Skip to main content

Search the Special Collections and Archives Portal

Transcript of interview with Patricia Hesse by James M. Greene, February 5, 1975






On February 5, 1975, James M. Greene interviewed Mrs. Patricia Hesse (born 1895 in Beaumont, Texas) in her home in Las Vegas, Nevada. The two discuss Hesse’s personal history and the general social life of early Las Vegas. Hesse also shares experiences that she has had with her friends while living in Las Vegas.

Digital ID


Physical Identifier



Hesse, Patricia Interview, 1975 February 5. OH-00847. [Transcript.] Oral History Research Center, Special Collections & Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.


This material is made available to facilitate private study, scholarship, or research. It may be protected by copyright, trademark, privacy, publicity rights, or other interests not owned by UNLV. Users are responsible for determining whether permissions are necessary from rights owners for any intended use and for obtaining all required permissions. Acknowledgement of the UNLV University Libraries is requested. For more information, please see the UNLV Special Collections policies on reproduction and use ( or contact us at

Standardized Rights Statement

Digital Provenance

Digitized materials: physical originals can be viewed in Special Collections and Archives reading room



Geographic Coordinate

36.0397, -114.98194



UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 1 An Interview with Patricia Hesse An Oral History Conducted by James M. Greene Ralph Roske Oral History Project on Early Las Vegas Special Collections and Archives Oral History Research Center University Libraries University of Nevada, Las Vegas UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 2 © Ralph Roske Oral History Project on Early Las Vegas University of Nevada, Las Vegas, 2019 UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 3 The Oral History Research Center (OHRC) was formally established by the Board of Regents of the University of Nevada System in September 2003 as an entity of the UNLV University Libraries’ Special Collections Division. The OHRC conducts oral interviews with individuals who are selected for their ability to provide first-hand observations on a variety of historical topics in Las Vegas and Southern Nevada. The OHRC is also home to legacy oral history interviews conducted prior to its establishment including many conducted by UNLV History Professor Ralph Roske and his students. This legacy interview transcript received minimal editing, such as the elimination of fragments, false starts, and repetitions in order to enhance the reader's understanding of the material. All measures have been taken to preserve the style and language of the narrator. The interviewee/narrator was not involved in the editing process. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 4 Abstract On February 5, 1975, James M. Greene interviewed Mrs. Patricia Hesse (born 1895 in Beaumont, Texas) in her home in Las Vegas, Nevada. The two discuss Hesse’s personal history and the general social life of early Las Vegas. Hesse also shares experiences that she has had with her friends while living in Las Vegas. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 5 Interviewing Mrs. Fred Hesse in her home in Las Vegas on February 5th, 1975. Mrs. Hesse is a longtime resident of Las Vegas and has had a distinguished life here, in as much as she was the wife of Mayor Fred Hesse and participated in the affairs of Las Vegas even then and to this day. These tapes, Mrs. Hesse, will repose in the Special Collections section of Nevada History in the University of Nevada, Las Vegas Library, for the use of Mrs. Hesse, and for all serious researchers in history. Mrs. Hesse, you mentioned that you came to Las Vegas in 1921 and married Mr. Fred Hesse—what was his occupation at that time? Consulting engineer. Consulting engineer—did he have some associates? Yes. Are they with him in his business? Yes, Mr. Stetson. Mr. Stetson. Of the Stetson Hat Company. Yes. Mr. Gillette, of the Gillete Razor Company. Yes. And Senator Cameron of Arizona. I see. And they are engaged in what kind of engineering work? Or was it land speculation, possibly? Yes. It was land speculation—? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 6 Land, yes, I think so. I remember you mentioning that they owned a considerable amount of land in the vicinity of Lake Mead, below what is now Boulder City, but was then on the river. Yes. And you mentioned having a large home down there? Yes. How large a home was it? Well, it was in the shape of an “H”— Of an “H.” And a log-cabin type. I see. And we had a huge living room. (Unintelligible) And two bedrooms on what side of the “H.” Yes. And Mr. Hesse’s office and another bedroom on that side— Yes. And then a large kitchen, and then outside of that was the cook’s— Yes. It was, was a can. And the cooks would stay out there. Fascinating. And I would have house—I didn’t live there—but I had house parties down there all the time. Oh did you? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 7 Yes. Who were some of your guests? Well, they’re primarily all dead now. Yes. Mrs. Cille Cragin. Mrs. Cille Cragin. Her husband was the mayor after Mr. Hesse, he’s dead. I see. And Bes Pembrook. Yes. And Mrs. Leo Magnum. Oh yes. And Mrs. Grace Neldon. Oh those are the life at the time, were they not? Yes, mm-hmm. We had lots of fun down there. We were held up there. Really? Yes, some bandits had stolen the car here in Las Vegas. Yes. And they came down and they got stuck in what’s Black Canyon, you know. Yes. And so they walked over to our camp, and we were all out in the yard, doing acrobatics—we were very young. (Laughs) Yes, yes? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 8 And this man came up and said that they were lost and they would like to have something to eat. And I told them to go to the cook’s camp— Yes. We were scared, we were frightened. Surely. And there were two of them. (Laughs) And we said that our husbands were out doing surveying. Yes. And they weren’t even there. (Laughs) And so we sent them to the cook house, and that night, we would have died laughing. We moved furniture—we hadn’t built, our house wasn’t finished here, and I had all my furniture down there: baby grand piano, and the big trolley. We put those up against the swinging doors, and everything’s (unintelligible)— (Laughs) And Mrs. Neldon had a very bad cold, and we made her sleep in one of the bedrooms alone. Well that night, we all slept in one room, regardless of the cold and everything else. And we got the house all shut up and locked, and the cat was in the house, and wanted to go out, so we opened the door about this far and pushed this big cat out. (Laughs) Well, next day, they came back and called me by name—well that really did frighten us. And so— UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 9 Well, yours was the only home on the river, of course they knew your name. And so, we sat—I sent them still back to the cook’s house, I didn’t want to do—well Fred had always told me if anybody came to the camp to be sure when they left, to give them food. Yes. So I did, I gave them oh you know, canned beans, and canned tomatoes— Yes. Beans and tomatoes? Yes, and things like that. And so by that, they started to walk out, through the Vegas marsh, you know? Oh? And— Is that the way you got to your home, from Las Vegas? Yes. That’s the Vegas way. Mm-hmm. And— Was there a road down there? Well, a fairly rough road. Yes? And, well anyways, by this time, it had gotten out that this car had been stolen, and they found down at Black Canyon. Fred knew the only way that they could get out was to come around through our camp. Yes. Well the men were (Unintelligible)’s husband’s gang down in the motorcar, and we talked so fast telling them. And I said, “And by the way, where’s my gun?” UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 10 (Laughs) And Fred says, “it’s right where the last we look for it,” and we couldn’t find it, so we had pitchforks— (Laughs) And well it was a very exciting time anyway. Then they caught the man. Did you have telephone communication? Oh no, no-no, we didn’t have no such thing. How long did it take to get down Vegas marsh in an automobile to your home, on the river? Oh, I’d say thirty-five minutes or an hour. Wasn’t it very warm down there Mrs. Hesse? In the summertime? Yes, well I was never there in the summer. You left for cooler climates in the summertime. Mm-hmm, I never stayed here. I see. Because we didn’t have coolers or anything. Oh no. So I really couldn’t stand the heat. Mm-hmm. Usually I’d get down to the coast ‘cause I liked to swim— Oh yes. So we’d go down— It was more of a weekend standard thing, away from Las Vegas. This was before you built your home on Fourth Street, was it? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 11 Yes, mm-hmm. That about Fourth and Fremont? Yes. Was that another large home? Yes, oh yes, very large. How many bedrooms did you have there? Oh we had one, two, three, five bedrooms and two baths— Goodness, I should say. And then being from Texas, I had the servants’ house out in the yard. Oh yes. And another bath there. And I was still sleeping outdoors, so we had a sleeping porch, and I slept there all the time. Do you remember what year Mr. Hesse became mayor of Las Vegas. No, I can’t tell you that, it was in the twenties. In the twenties, uh-huh. Mm-hmm. I don’t know, I should say about twenty-four, twenty-five. And for how many years was he? Well, he was for two terms, and I think the terms were six years—I’m not exactly accurate on that. I see. Do you remember some of his associates in the city government? Hmm, let’s see. Mr. Thomas, he’s dead. What? Did he have a business with Mr. Thomas? Yes, a clothing business. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 12 I see. I don’t remember any of them— Where did you buy your groceries? Who did you buy them from? Clint Boggs, Mr. Clint Boggs had a grocery store. Mr. Boggs, I see. But if we wanted anything very fresh, then they didn’t carry it. And Mr. Stetson and his wife would drive up here and bring me fresh vegetables and things. And they would come from where? From Hollywood. From Hollywood and bring you fresh veggies. Mm-hmm. Didn’t the railroad serve this purpose? Well yes, you could have things, but lots of times when I gave up hardly, I had things sent up by mail. I was thinking maybe Mr. Boggs might beget vegetables? No he didn’t, I guess there were not the facilities here to keep them fresh. You mean they didn’t have ice at that time? Well we had ice from the railroad, but not like we have now. Yes, well, he didn’t carry then a big stock of meats then either? Oh, well, yes, they did, we’ve got all kinds of meat here. And do they have ice-coolers I suppose for his meats. I guess. What ladies’ organizations were in Las Vegas? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 13 Well I didn’t belong to any except Bridge Club. Bridge—I see. And then later, we had this (unintelligible) that wasn’t very (unintelligible). Oh, a fan club, (unintelligible) do you remember some of the members of your club? Yes, Mrs. Williams. Mrs. Williams. And Mrs. Louis. What did Mr. Williams do? He was with the railroad, and by the way he came in 1905 with the railroad. Mr. Williams did, what was his first name? Nick. Nick Williams? Mm-hmm. Miss and Mr. Reed—Hycie, we call her, will be able to tell you a lot about the very first days here. Oh yes. And that is the auctioning of the land, and so far? If you want to know who bought the land for the railroad, it was Judge Magnum, my attorney’s grandfather. Your attorney’s grandfather (Laughs)—when did you first meet the Doctor and Mrs. Woodberry? Well, I didn’t meet them when they first came— While they were here? And they— Or they came after you? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 14 Yes. Oh yes, they came in the thirties. I see. I don’t remember when. And they were, well I became—Mrs. Woodberry and I became friendly. Yes. Very soon after they came. Surely. And we’ve been intimate friends ever since. Yes. And I didn’t know Doctor so well, because I wasn’t sick. (Laughs) (Laughs) And, but then— You know that’s remarkable. That, not having an illness after so many years of respiratory troubles. Did it clear up rapidly after you came to the desert? Well, no, I would have to down to Los Angeles, to the doctor there that had taken care of me. Yes. And, but then when I would go down there, I wouldn’t be able to talk, hardly at all— the glands in my throat was, would become so slow. I see. But the desert did cure— Oh, yes, yes. Your respiratory troubles. Well I know you’re grateful for the desert—remain true to the end after it helped you. Oh, I wouldn’t live any place else, truly. I think a lot of people could say that. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 15 Mm. Do you remember where you might have say, purchased yard goods, or who had a department store or something? Well there, you couldn’t call it a dependent store— (Laughs) And I did all my shopping down in Los Angeles, but I just give everybody heck now if they go to Los Angeles to shop because we have everything here. (Laughs) Oh of course! You wouldn’t think of it. Mm-hmm. Did you take holidays in, maybe in Utah or Wyoming during summertime? Not so much Utah or Wyoming— Went to the coast perhaps. Yes, most always to the coast because we thought getting away from the dry air, that the salt air was much healthier than going to another place where the air was so dry. I see. You mentioned Mr. Cragin being a friend of the family’s. Mm-hmm. And of course, Doctor Woodberry, can you remember some other of your intimate friends? Yes, Mr. (Unintelligible), I started to tell you that a little while ago, about Mr. (Unintelligible) staying at our house. Mr. (Unintelligible) Well, Mister— why, I was very happy with both of them because they put me on a pedestal and I could do no wrong or nobody ever dared say a word about me. (Laughs) UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 16 What lady can resist that? I should say. They’re fine gentleman— Mr. Pike, was he in the business with Mr. Cragin? Yes, the Cragin Empire—Insurance Company. Do you remember other businessmen that you liked to do business with? Well, I didn’t do very much business up here for a long time. I see. Did you have difficulty in cooling your Las Vegas home? Oh, it was terrible, so difficult. Well we had, I think the first, homemade cooling system that was a box with a fan in it, and then sawdust over it, and then the water from the hose we’d put on top and then it’d drip down. I see. But we had that little (unintelligible) my rooms were so large that would only keep our bedroom cool. (Laughs) And then in those days, the Las Vegas nights used to be much cooler. They did? Yes, you see now, we’re so built up and the high buildings hold the heat— Yes. And the humidity— Lots of little sprinkling. Yes. So it was entirely different then, the nights were always delightful. Well, cool and dry, yes. Mm-hmm. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 17 Well cooler, because of the lack of humidity. But I would go away the first of June and wouldn’t come back until September. (Laughs) You know, I can’t call you a coward because everybody does the same. Yes. ‘Course not having been raised in the desert climate, it was hard for you initially. Mm-hmm. When was it you come back you say—first of September? Yes, it was hot enough then. Now— But not like it was the heat had broken— Yes? Did you have any hotels at that time that you distinctly remember that you visited socially? Oh yes, I’ll tell you something funny about that. When I first came here to get my divorce, I stayed at what is now the South (Unintelligible) you know? Yes ma’am. And I think the name of it then was the Las Vegas Hotel. Las Vegas Hotel, yes. And so I had one of the few rooms with a bath. And the water—they had a water shortage, and I would turn my bathwater on, and then take a nap (Laughs) (Laughs) And when I’d wake up, I’d have about that much water in the tub. Only two or three inches? Well, about like this. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 18 Goodness, not much water pressure was there? And then— You’d have to wait almost all day to take a bath. Yes. Well then, I didn’t stay there very long, because I went to live with Mrs. McCrystal, whose granddaughter of my attorney’s again. The Magnum family. Where was their home then, Mrs. Hesse? Oh, right where the Nevada Power is now at Fourth and Ogden, I think. Fourth and Ogden, I see. And she had a large home? No it wasn’t too large, but we—I had my room— Yes. There, and she had hers, and her daughter had hers. Did you remember any of the guest ranches, you know? That the Hollywood people used to come up here? No, I don’t remember the names of them, I never was there. You remember, (unintelligible) out in Paradise Valley? Oh yes, lovely ones. Lovely ones, yes. We used to drive out to some of them and get fruit, but I don’t even remember the names. I remember a few of those in the very early forties. Mm. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 19 But they weren’t occupied by, I think movie stars mainly owned them at that time. Say, forty-two and three, three particularly I remember. The Hollywood person would just maintain homes rather than in Palm Springs. ‘Course this was fashionable them, you know? Gambling would come in— Oh, well when I first came here they had no gambling. Ah yes, that’s right. My husband was a great gambler. One, do you remember when the gambling started here? Yes I remember but I don’t remember what year. I see. Was it in hotels? Or was it mainly on Fremont Street— I see. Oh and by the way, is it alright to mention another name that you might look up? Yes, very much. There’s a Mister—now, I don’t know him— a Mr. Harold Stalker, that they had one of the first gambling places I think here. And you can look him (unintelligible)— Yes, I will. And they were here in the early day. Mm-hmm. How about—they’re really—? There was no place to go and eat. You had to go down to the railroad station and eat at what they called the Beanery. (Laughs) Do you remember who ran that? No, it was, well I guess by the railroad, the railroad ran that. Railroad ran that. Can you remember any names, like, the Fongs or the Papas family? Yes. I know one of ‘em. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 20 Jack Papas? Yes, I guess, he used to live right down here. Yes he did, yes he did, not too far from you. Just about two doors—that’s now vacant. I talked to him last fall. You did? Yes, he’s eighty-seven right at that time, and— I’ve haven’t seen him for a long time, I used to see –at the hospital and talk to him. His wife’s quite a bit younger than he is. That is—Doctor Woodberry’s hospital is gravitating towards becoming more of a clinic— Yes. ‘Cause they still have a hospital functioning No, no, they, not since Claire having that stroke really— Well, that’s very reasonable then. Mm-hmm. And you see, he was, he really kept those rooms filled, but I want to tell you it was a hospital like, it’s a private hospital of course, like you have never seen. You’re a number at these big hospitals. Yes ma’am. You know? But at the Las Vegas Hospital, you were a person. ‘Course, I spent so much time there because I’d be in three months at a time. Why did mister—Doctor Woodberry have a stroke, do you remember? Yes, I can remember. It’s been over a year ago. But until very recently, it was (unintelligible) hospital. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 21 Oh yes, they just, oh yes, they just closed it recently because they were losing money with the upstairs and so they just turned it into a room and Claire couldn’t practice in it anymore. Oh no. How long it was before the doctor could practice again? Or could he ever—did he ever practice after his skills? In the first place, they wouldn’t let him. And then he couldn’t, they wouldn’t give him insurance. Yes. And so of course, the doctor in this day and age can’t practice. This is true, yes. Well, he did maintain an interest in his property then and has his office there. Goodness I’m glad he has an office there. Oh I am too, he’d go crazy. Yes. I go in to see him every Monday and Friday. Isn’t that wonderful? He appreciates it so much. Well, as one of my friends said, Claire was therapy for me and I was therapy for him. Yes? And so, oh. I never minded staying in the hospital because everybody knew me, because I was there every year for three years to four months at a time. And everybody from the parlor and the cooks and everybody know me. And the nurses, I loved them, I never minded the time. In fact, when I’d come home, I’d be homesick. Yes, it was wasn’t it! Well, I got so much attention there, you know? Which I liked. (Laughs) When did you move into your present home—? This one? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 22 This one, at 203 South Sixth. Oh, in forty-two. In 1942. I’ve lived here a long time. Why yes. I would like to move, but I have to be near the hospital ‘cause I have to go twice a week. Oh yes. And then all my friends are right around here. Well, who do you visit with now? Well, Mrs. Woodberry, Mrs. Williams, Mrs. Louis, Mrs. Powers. (Laughs) Fine. So many of our friends are dying now. Yes? Are in (unintelligible) and I’m getting stronger than I’ve ever been in my life thanks to Claire. Yes? Well he gives good advice. He stresses in our conversation at least, good day to day preventative medicine. Just stay in good health, and you’re ‘gonna be alright. Yes. And I think that’s good advice, that’s very wise. And really do you feel, you might, would, care to move one day from this home? Oh, I would if I can—now my attorney again, who tends to all my affairs for me. Of course. You’d be surprised to know that I have never been in a first national bank. (Laughs) Is that right? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 23 No because John tends to all of my business affairs. And I was there just once, when Mrs. Woodberry and I went to Europe, and I had to get travel checks. And that’s the only time I’ve been in that bank. When did you go to Europe? Oh about, eight years ago I bet. Did you take the grand tour? No, we went to Ireland first. And then we went to Rome. Oh yes. And then we went to Venice. Oh really. And this is where we made a mistake. We came back to Rome and we were going to Austria, and we just doubled crossed our way and they laughed at us when we got it. One of my old beaus was living in Austria, so we didn’t, we weren’t there like tourists. I see. We were there as—we weren’t guests there, but they entertained us all the time. Yes, I see. And it was oh, Lola and I first roomed together, and it was the first elegant hotel that we had. The travel agency had registered in different hotels, but we weren’t too pleased, but we didn’t mind. But when we got to Austria, we had this beautiful (unintelligible) gentleman Kristoph, who was this old beau of mine—knew what extravagant tastes I had— (Laughs) So we got the royal suite. And what city was this? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 24 This was in, oh— Vienna? Yes, Vienna. And oh, the suite was the most magnificent thing. I can’t even describe to tell you what it was. Clearly. And oh, just magnificent paintings and everything. Well, we were there just two nights and managing downstairs, was one of the Germans— Yes. Hitler Germans. Oh I see. Told us we had to get out, it’s the King in Romania or something, one of the countries, was coming. (Unintelligible) So we of course, I called our driver and came to see what to do, but nothing could be done. So, but they did give us two rooms, adjoining—they were very nice. The rooms were all lovely and the food was out of this world. How long were you in Europe? Oh, about six weeks. I see. After Mr. Hesse’s turn of mayor was filled, who succeeded him? Mr. Cragin—Ernie Cragin. Mr. Cragin. Then does Mr. Hesse return to his business as a consulting engineer? Yes, he did. Only the awful thing, I’ve always regretted this, I built a garage. I owned that property from the Fremont hotel to the block there. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 25 Which block are you referring to? To Ogden. To Ogden? Mm-hmm. And right, all of the hotel property was mine. Where the plaza now sits? No, where the Fremont hotel is. Oh, the Fremont. And, so I built a garage there. Well, we had a man that we thought was reliable. And he proved not so good. Yes. So— Is this the Hesse garage? So Fred had to— El Rio. The El Rio Garage? Mm-hmm. I see. And Fred had to take over and manage that thing and he hated it. He just hated it. He’s an engineer at heart. Yes. And he did as much as engineering as he could, but he couldn’t let that property go to ruin. No. And I never saw a man hate anything so—he used to get mad at me, but I said, “You made, you told me you’d build that.” (Laughs) Do you remember the businesses each side of your garage, the El Rio garage? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 26 Well we had the garage and then I had another building there that we added to the garage that I rented. I see. Was a store in there or something? No, it was a cleaning thing I think. I see. I never paid much attention to it. And there was the, a small hospital. On Fremont Street? No, off the Fremont on Second Street. On Second Street. Mm-hmm. Behind your garage, huh? No. It was right, near Fremont Street. I see. And our main entrance to the garage was on Ogden. What was the name of that hospital that’s there? I think it was the Early Las Vegas Hospital. The Early Las Vegas Hospital. Mm-hmm. But Claire wasn’t in it then. Yes, I understand. And it was just a small hospital. Do you remember a lot of the—‘cause of the wooden buildings, were there many fires? Yes, and it was a great excitement, everybody used to go to the fires. I’ll tell you what, we all, every fire we went to, till they stopped it, and as the town got a little larger, you know, because UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 27 (unintelligible). And then another thing we’d do— the big event of the town, when I first came here was to go to the station and see the through trains come in and the hotel went down. (Laughs) We used to have fun like that. How many trains a day would go through here? Well, we had the lean train from Chicago, of the Union Pacific— Was this in the thirties yet? Yes, oh no. No, well, it ran into the thirties. The late twenties, huh? And— Had the Depression struck yet in 1929? Yes, but Las Vegas has been fortunate. Depression has never bothered it too much. Really? Well something always happened—the Dam was built, the Basic came in, and it just seemed— Like it was destined to be. Yes. Oh that’s fair, I see. What was the main occupation of most of Las Vegas residents in those days? Say for, pre-Depression days. Well there were lawyers— Railroads or farming, or—? Yes, well it was purely a railroad town. I see. Purely. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 28 Mm-hmm. And I almost regretted when we moved here, we moved (unintelligible), most everybody worked for the railroad. Yes. And then of course, there were about three doctors here. Uh-huh. Couple of dentists. Do you remember any of their names? No I don’t. Well, I knew Doctor Mildren. Mildren? Yes, I went to him before Claire. I see. (Unintelligible) Oh yes. Marry a dentist? Yes, Doctor O’Bryen. And he was Downtown too. Yes. Did you have a police department as well? Yes. Not many though? No, no. They were pretty good though ‘cause they weren’t afraid of ‘em, but nobody ever locked their door. Nobody? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 29 Nobody ever had a key, imagine that now. With so many itinerants because of the railroad? Well there were so many itinerants, they all lived here. I guess the Depression that brought probably the itinerant people in. Mm-hmm. And this is before that time. What did you think of Las Vegas when you first saw it? The truth. Well I well. Well I really, I really liked it, the town. Because it was something different and I used to write these wild tales. (Laughs) That’s all? (Laughs) yes. Not all of them were true, they were a little exaggerated. Oh you were around the Frontier. Yes. Really? Oh I don’t know, but I really like the town, but I wasn’t used to the people. I was entirely different. Oh yes? I can see why. The schools— Well I never left my youngest son go to school here, I hated to send him away so young, but— When was he born, Mrs. Hesse? He was born in 1912. And what was your son’s name? Edgar. Edgar? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 30 Mm-hmm. So he did not go to the Las Vegas school. Where did you send him? I sent him to private schools down in Los Angeles. In Los Angeles, I see. I’d go down, I spent the road hop-riding— (Laughs) Oh, I wanted to. He graduated from San Diego Army and Navy and then went to Harvard. Army and Navy is—about what’s the location of that little town? It’s changed—it was right in San Diego. But its north of there? Yes. Yes it is north of there. I forget the name. I do too because it’s an entirely different school than it was when Edgar went there. What was his major course of study at Harvard? Oh, he took law. Took law? And did he come with? No. No, he went to—right away he was sent to the state department during the war. Oh I see. Because he could speak so many languages and he did intelligence work for the state department because in Peru, there were quite a few Germans and Japanese. And of course, most of the Germans were in the camp, what’s the—he would have to go to these smaller towns you know. Did he spend most of his career in South America? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 31 Yes. And well, he was still living there—he was retired, except staying, his father was not quite well then. Edgar (unintelligible) and he just tended to his affairs after he got out of the state department. And then he died of cancer in 1958. It occurs to me that some disposition must’ve been made, or logically, it may not have. It made up your river property because of the backing under the water. Here you have a lovely river home— It’s under four hundred feet now. I understand. Was there any compensation ever given to other property owners as well as yourself? Or? No, I don’t think so. I mean, it was a complete loss? Mm-hmm. You’re never—the government, never gave you anything. Mm. Well that’s unusual. I wonder if that’s still done today, if they build another dam, why—that would be— Oh I don’t know how it would be now. Property loss. Yes, but ours was development property down there. But in, you know, like Black Canyon, you know, there’s quite a lot of property that’s down there. Private property. Mm-hmm. Before the Dam was started. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 32 Mm-hmm. No, not before the Dam was started. What’s the name of that town down there? Boulder city? No, no. In the Black Canyon District. Henderson? No, no. No, no, it was right on— Oh, Overton? No, mm-mm. Oh I don’t know. From the Black Canyon District. While it’s the Black Canyon to me, I— Yes, of course. I don’t know what it is now, but there’s a town there. But it’s not any of those old towns. Were customers thinking of Bullhead? Mm-hmm. I see. After they got draft experience, what did Mr. Hesse do? Was he engaged, still engaged in—? He was still in engineering, but he died right afterwards. And what year did he pass? Forty-one. In 1941, I see. Mm-hmm. And then was that the time you came over here to your present home? Well, I was gone for a year, and then I came back here. I see. UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 33 Forty-two. And took up with your old friends again? Yes. (Laughs) The present city of Las Vegas, ‘course must seem very impersonal to you. Oh yes, it does to all of the old-timers. ‘Course. ‘Cause I told you, they don’t count me as an old-timer. (Laughs) (Laughs) I told you that Mrs. Williams’ husband came in 1905. 1905 on the railroad, yes. And Mr.—out of Westlake, I’m sure came very soonish after that. Certainly. What did he do, Mr. Westlake? I don’t know, I don’t know any job. I see. My attorney told me about it. And—I tried to get that I hope he’s alright. I tried to get him to see about that man I told you about. Yes. And I couldn’t get him, to see him. But I’m sure it is, because he was here and there during the early Depression. (Unintelligible). Do you remember when the boys first came to town? Sam Boys? No. No, I see. Was the main street of town mainly engaged in Nevada’s Fremont Street, mainly engaged in mercantile activity, or was it entertainment? UNLV University Libraries Patricia Hesse 34 No, we didn’t have that much entertainment. Yes, I see, I see. And they may have had, now in the stocker’s place—they may have had a poker game going on, but not publically I’d guess. And I’m not sure about that, but I think there is because I’m quite sure my husband played poker, and I think that he also played Bridge there. I see. Straight Bridge, not any of the late Bridge, the old-fashioned Bridge. And he liked that, as a gambling game. So they don’t like this other fellow telling. Oh no. Did you learn to ride horses? Oh well I, when I was born, my grandfather gave me a pony and a dog, and I—Edgar’s down in Texas, I rode back horseback all the time, but not here. Not here? Why do you think that was? Well, they weren’t any special horses to ride and there was no place to ride. Prob