This is the morning of January 21, 1999. We’re at the Jewish Federation building at 1175 College Avenue and I’m Naomi Scottenstein with the Columbus Jewish Historical Society and this morning we’re interviewing Lou Goodman as part of the Oral History Project and Lou, let’s start by telling me your full name.

Goodman: Lou A. Goodman.

Interviewer: Do you know what your Jewish name is?

Goodman: Lavey.

Interviewer: Do you happen to know who you were named after?

Goodman: Yeah, a woman. Her name was Lena and her name was Leah in
Jewish so my name is Lavey.

Interviewer: That’s it. What relationship was she to you or was there a

Goodman: I think she was a cousin. Everybody was a cousin in those days.

Interviewer: Well your parents chose a name that they felt was good for you.
They had to have closeness to that person.

Goodman: Yeah. To the family, their family and our family and everybody. See
the Goodmans was a big family at one time. Not as big as the Schottensteins of
course. Lot of Goodmans.

Interviewer: Tell me who your mother and dad were.

Goodman: My mother, my father’s name was Abe, Abraham Goodman.

Interviewer: He went by both names, Abe, Abraham?

Goodman: Yeah, they’re Jewish Avram, Aba.

Interviewer: Uh huh, okay.

Goodman: And my mother came by herself . . . .

Interviewer: From?

Goodman: From I don’t know where at in . . . .

Interviewer: In Europe?

Goodman: Europe, that’s all I know. And when she came why she married my

Interviewer: Uh huh. What was your mother’s name?

Goodman: Ida, Ida Sarah.

Interviewer: Okay. What was her maiden name?

Goodman: You mean the . . . .

Interviewer: Her name before she married?

Goodman: Last name?

Interviewer: Yeah.

Goodman: Felger.

Interviewer: Felger, F-E-L-G-E-R?

Goodman: Yeah you know, Pickie Felger?

Interviewer: Oh yeah. So she was related, she was related to the Felger

Goodman: Uh huh. That’s right.

Interviewer: Okay. And how did your parents meet? Do you happen to know?

Goodman: No, I wasn’t born then.

Interviewer: No but did they ever talk about how they, I mean your father was

Goodman: No that was, my father, what happened, how he got here, his father
came over to see how the United States looks. Then he went back and brought back
three of his sons and two sons stayed here and the other son he married a girl
and they went on a horse and wagon to California. But on the way they stopped
someplace and took that land and kept it. You know that’s what they used to
do. And I’d never met them until one day, one day a knock on the door and I
opened it up and he said, “I’m your Uncle Ben.” And that’s how I
met him. And Ben had another, then when he brought over my grandmother, my
grandfather brought her over, he . . . .

Interviewer: How did your grandfather have connection with your mother to
bring her over?

Goodman: He didn’t bring her over.

Interviewer: Oh I thought you said he brought her over.

Goodman: No, he came over because of her sister was here and they brought her

Interviewer: Oh okay.

Goodman: You know Milt Goodman the doctor? Well that was my cousin, first
cousin. And my mother’s were very advanced. ‘Cause his mother and my mother
were sisters.

Interviewer: Sisters, okay.

Goodman: And so that’s how she got here. And I think you must have known
this ’cause my other uncle was named David and he was, married a girl, woman
named, all I remember the name was Libby. But she had about four daughters or
five daughters. Ann was one of them. She just got back into town and she got
married to somebody.

Interviewer: What’s her name now, Ann’s name?

Goodman: I don’t know her last name.

Interviewer: Oh.

Goodman: I don’t know what her last name is.

Interviewer: So just tell me about your uncles now. You had Uncle . . . .

Goodman: I had Uncle Ben. He was the oldest. My father was the next one.
Okay. Abe. And then there was David and then there was, I think his name was
Isaac. I’m not sure. It was something like that. Okay. He came over with his

Interviewer: Isaac did?

Goodman: Yeah Isaac did. But he got sick on the boat and he lost his speech
and everything. He became a mute. Luckily he married a mute. Uh huh. And he had
two sons. So . . . .

Interviewer: Where did Isaac end up living?

Goodman: You know, he didn’t . . . .

Interviewer: In Columbus?

Goodman: Yeah. He lived on, he’s a tailor. And you never saw him when he
wasn’t smiling. And he lived on, now I can’t think of the street I was born

Interviewer: Okay well we’ll get to that.

Goodman: We were living on that street. He happened to marry a woman from
Cincinnati. She was Jewish. But she was a mute. So they got along very good. In
fact I used to go around with them lots of times and . . . .

Interviewer: What about their children? Were there . . . .

Goodman: Two sons.

Interviewer: And who were they?

Goodman: Edward and David. But you know not having the kind of a life that
they had, they wereworked with a gambling crowd. Not that
they gambled but they worked for them at the tables. And they were fine fellows.
And . . . .

Interviewer: Let’s go back to Ben. Where did Ben end up living?

Goodman: California. And I don’t know anything about him.

Interviewer: Okay. So you kind, you really lost track of him?

Goodman: All I, I don’t know whether he’s dead or alive or what. I mean
he should be dead, I mean, but age is . . . . because my father passed away when
he was 80. And this was an older man.

Interviewer: Uh huh. And what about David? What happened with David?

Goodman: He lived here with his wife Libby and the girls.

Interviewer: And who were their children?

Goodman: Oh I can’t even remember their names. I know them when I, Joe
Cohen who lives here in town, you know, he’s married to one of them. That’s
the only one I know.

Interviewer: Oh okay. Well we, it’s not hard to lose track. Do you know
where, what country, you don’t know the area that your father came from?

Goodman: No.

Interviewer: But oh, okay.

Goodman: You know, he wanted to tell me everything but I wouldn’t listen. I
mean, any- body, a lot of people have been that way, see. They wish they’d
listened to their father in talking of what they did. I used to hear him talk
about how they rushed, ran away from the army, you know. That’s what all the
Jewish men did if they could.

Interviewer: From the Czar?

Goodman: From the Czar. They ran out. They did, something and left. Just like
where they say Murray Ebner . . . .

Interviewer: Murray Ebner left Germany because of the Holocaust.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Well this was another kind of Holocaust.

Goodman: They wanted to bring them to the war.

Interviewer: Well this was in the late 1800s, wasn’t it?

Goodman: Yeah. And that’s why they wanted them to go into the army and
these Jewish men didn’t want to go in the army. And they all snuck away I
think, whatever they could.

Interviewer: They wanted to come to a better country.

Goodman: Yeah they wanted to get away from the war effort.

Interviewer: You know we’re going to just stop one moment. Okay, we’re
talking about leaving Russia. But why did they come to Columbus?

Goodman: That I can’t tell you. My father stayed in New York for about a
year as a tailor. So then he came here to be with his father and the other . . .

Interviewer: Okay, his father was already established in Columbus?

Goodman: His father was here. His father was really an artist.

Interviewer: What kind of an artist?

Goodman: Well he could do anything. He was a watchmaker. And he made watches.
He got them together. He made furniture, anything that . . . . make but the
greatest things that he made that I wish I would have taken home, he would take
a razor and take a, like one of these sized things and he would make a picture
out of it and put it on a thing like that.

Interviewer: You mean he would use a razor blade and carve into wood or . . .

Goodman: Into wood and to paper. And made a picture like any . . . .

Interviewer: So it was a paper cut?

Goodman: Yeah a paper cut but he could, well he had two daughters. I . . . .
thought about that. And that’s who got them. I wish I’d have . . . . I’d
have taken one of them knowing what I know now.

Interviewer: So he did paper cuts?

Goodman: He did that and say, someone passed away and he would make the
drawing for the tomb and give it to the guys that knew how to make . . . .

Interviewer: Oh wow.

Goodman: and it, for the Beth Jacob, that’s where we belonged, the Beth
Jacob. He knew the things for everything like that and . . . .

Interviewer: Memorials or any kind of art work that they needed . . . .

Goodman: Yeah, art work, he could do it.

Interviewer: at Beth Jacob?

Goodman: He could do anything.

Interviewer: And did anybody else in your family inherit that artistic skill?

Goodman: No.

Interviewer: So you remember your grandfather then?

Goodman: Oh yeah. Yeah. I remember both grandfathers. My mother’s father,
he came over here. They brought him over and my mother’s mother passed away
when she was a little girl.

Interviewer: Oh, when your mother was a little girl?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Uh huh. So you don’t have a memory of that, of course?

Goodman: Well I’ve never seen her.

Interviewer: Yeah, yeah, sure.

Goodman: . . . . But when they brought that father over, why . . . .

Interviewer: Uh huh. There was a lot of closeness with your family at that
time when . . . .

Goodman: Yeah. Let me think that we lived right around where I was born. That
was on Washington Street. Everybody lived on Washington Street.

Interviewer: You actually were born on Washington Street?

Goodman: No.

Interviewer: No? What? You said Elmwood?

Goodman: Elmwood.

Interviewer: Elmwood, which is a little street off of Washington?

Goodman: Well no. It’s one block away from Washington. See the big shul was
on Donaldson and Washington.

Interviewer: What was the name of that shul?

Goodman: Agudas Achim.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: It was a big one. You had to walk up the steps, it was beautiful.

Interviewer: So that was a biggest shul?

Goodman: That was, it was the big shul. And then down the street
there, on Donaldson Street but a block away, was the Beth Jacob. And the Beth
Jacob, it was started and my father was the President of that. First they had a
group, they davened in a house. And then they decided they wanted to have
a shul and they picked my father to be the guy to . . . .

Interviewer: So he was kind of the leader of the . . . .

Goodman: He was the leader of the shul. There was a magazine printed.
I got the magazine at home but I keep it so I want to see it.

Interviewer: It’s very valuable.

Goodman: I think it was in 1910 or something like this when they built it.
And that was the Beth Jacob. Then on Washington Street if you was going north,
there was another shul. They were all together.

Interviewer: Uh huh. What was the other shul?

Goodman: I can’t think of the name. It had a nickname and it’s probably
now the . . . .

Interviewer: Ahavas Sholom? Tifereth Israel? Uh huh.

Goodman: And there was another shul for Ahavas Sholom? Right down the
road, in a two-block area. We used to go to shul on a holiday, you know,
and loaded with peanuts, not the nuts, and everything else. But they’d stand
out, everybody, all the men and women, not the men. The boys and the women would
buy a new dress for that occasion or they’d, “I bought a new suit,”
that day.

Interviewer: Uh huh. New holiday, you’d buy new clothes.

Goodman: Yeah. And it was fun, you know. Everybody stayed on the corner,
stand on the corner.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Well you said something about the nuts. What was that
about? You said . . . .

Goodman: Oh that’s a game, you know, you’d just roll nuts to see if you
could get the other nut, then it’s yours.

Interviewer: So instead of marbles?

Goodman: Yeah instead of marbles. You know. And there was nuts and I’d go
in and see how much I got in my hand or something. They always had something.

Interviewer: Yeah. You didn’t have money because it was Yontif or Shabbos?
Money wasn’t important then for kids.

Goodman: Yeah. They didn’t have money. Yeah. When any of us in the family
wanted to go to a movie, we used to go on a Sunday, see. And we’d get eleven
cents, ten cents to get in a penny to buy candy. And the candy we bought, we
called it a “grab bag.” When it got stale, they gave you a whole bag
full for a penny.

Interviewer: At the theater? At the store? You bought it at the store?

Goodman: Yeah. You know who had a store? It was the Kanters. Now you call
them “Kanter” now, the Kanterovitz . . . .

Interviewer: Uh huh. Kanterovitz was their original name?

Goodman: Yeah. They had a little store on the corner of Engler and
Washington. I tell you, they were the, I don’t know . . . . they raised some
beautiful kids.

Interviewer: Who were the Kanter kids? Who were the Kanters? Tell us who they
were. Who’s that family?

Goodman: Well they had two sons and a daughter. And the daughter became an

Interviewer: What was her name? Goldie?

Goodman: Something like that.

Interviewer: Goldie? She was colorful. And who were the sons?

Goodman: They were both in the building business and things like that. They
were great. One of them was a doctor.

Interviewer: Doc Kanter?

Goodman: Doc Kanter. There were two doctors, Abe Kanter and Jake Kanter or
something like that.

Interviewer: Were they brothers? Were Abe and Jake brothers?

Goodman: Oh yeah. And . . . .

Interviewer: But their mother, their family had a store?

Goodman: Had a little store, you know. And I think only two people could walk
in that store downstairs, you know. I don’t know how they . . . .

Interviewer: Did they sell groceries or . . . .

Goodman: Oh they had some canned goods and things like that, you know.

Interviewer: But it wasn’t kosher particularly?

Goodman: Oh it was?

Interviewer: It was kosher?

Goodman: Everything was kosher in those days . . . .

Interviewer: But they didn’t sell meat did they?

Goodman: No. No, they had butchers. Butchers had stores. There were two

Interviewer: Who were the butchers? Who do you remember?

Goodman: I can’t remember their names.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Okay.

Goodman: I’m sorry. But one was way up on Livingston Avenue in later days.
‘Cause my father when he had nothing to do, he’d go over there and sit and
talk with him. And the other one was down on Donaldson Avenue, further west. It
was right near the mikveh.

Interviewer: Uh huh. You remember that there was a mikveh?

Goodman: There was a mikveh. I went there once to find out what it

Interviewer: So it was one mikveh for the whole community?

Goodman: Oh yeah. Yeah.

Interviewer: Uh huh, like there is today?

Goodman: That’s right. So it was . . . .

Interviewer: Were you considered an Orthodox family?

Goodman: Oh yeah? Oh yeah. Everybody was. Everybody was.

Interviewer: If you lived on that side of town?

Goodman: Well there was a Reform shul and they don’t care.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Right.

Goodman: . . . . you asked them all they knew once. They didn’t know what
they wanted to be until they voted. I mean Mr. Lazarus, he was the president of
that Reform shul.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Was it always called Temple Israel?

Goodman: Yeah. Yeah. It was down further on that, what’s the name of that
street? I don’t know.

Interviewer: Well eventually it was on Bryden Road.

Goodman: Bryden Road.

Interviewer: Yeah. They had a big Temple there.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Uh huh. So Agudas Achim, you actually belonged to that shul
and . . . .

Goodman: I didn’t. I do now. I belonged to the Beth Jacob.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: My father was the first president of the shul and they seemed
to take turns. They had, I’ll name the four men it seemed they’d take turns.
There was Shustick, the roofer. He did things like that. There was a Furman.
They had a coal . . . .

Interviewer: Furman had a coal company?

Goodman: Coal company. Uh you know this guy . . . . my father and he were
very good friends and I am with Buddy.

Interviewer: Beim?

Goodman: Beim.

Interviewer: Beim, okay.

Goodman: That was the four.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Was Beim in the insurance business even then?

Goodman: Yeah. . . . money loaner too.

Interviewer: Money loaner? Uh huh. So they were pretty much the machers
of Beth Jacob then?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Who was the rabbi at that time? Do you happen to

Goodman: We had a great rabbi. My father got him but he, I can’t remember
the name. He writes books. He wrote books and everything. Everybody knows him
all over the United States. He was that kind of a rabbi. Greenwald.

Interviewer: Greenwald, okay.

Goodman: Yeah, but my father, I met him because my father hired him for the shul
’cause my dad used to do all those things. When they want somebody they got
them and . . . . And he came in our house and I met him. Of course then I saw
him in the shul all the time.

Interviewer: Sure. Yeah he sure was well loved. And respected.

Goodman: Respected over the country. I mean, you say Greenwood . . . .

Interviewer: Greenwald.

Goodman: My God. Greenwald, man, like you’re talking about heaven.

Interviewer: Well who was, do you know anything, remember anything about his

Goodman: No, I don’t remember. . . .

Interviewer: If he had children or wife or? Okay. Tell me about your family.
Do you have brothers, sisters?

Goodman: I had a brother.

Interviewer: You had a brother?

Goodman: Yeah, Willie Goodman.

Interviewer: Willie? Okay.

Goodman: You knew him.

Interviewer: Yeah I knew Willie, sure.

Goodman: Everybody knew Willie. And I had three sisters.

Interviewer: Three sisters?

Goodman: Ann was the oldest one.

Interviewer: Well let’s stay with Willie a minute.

Goodman: Oh yes.

Interviewer: All right. Who was Willie married to?

Goodman: Mim Himmelstein.

Interviewer: Himmelstein. Okay. And who are their children?

Goodman: Victor and Paula.

Interviewer: Okay. Okay, that’s Willie.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Okay, now tell me about your sisters.

Goodman: My sister Ann married a fellow from Milwaukee and she went there to
see Milt Goodman being married and she met this fellow there.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: And so she went to, she started living in Milwaukee and then she
lived in California.

Interviewer: Who was the man she married? What was his name?

Goodman: Sam something. I can’t . . . .

Interviewer: Sam? Okay. Do you remember where, so they lived out of town all
the time then? Uh huh. Did they have children?

Goodman: No.

Interviewer: No. Okay. And what about your other sister?

Goodman: Esther.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: She was the youngest. She was married to Jack Schwartz.

Interviewer: Jack Schwartz? And did they live in Columbus?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: Jack Schwartz.

Interviewer: Did they have children?

Goodman: Yeah they’re still living here.

Interviewer: Who are their children?

Goodman: One of them married a Paine girl.

Interviewer: Paine?

Goodman: Yeah. Paine girl. They live on Ardmore. I know them . . . .

Interviewer: Yeah well I know it’s stored in our minds and . . . .

Goodman: And then he had, he has, he and my sister Esther, they had one son
and three daughters.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: Stephanie, that’s the only one I can really remember. But I talked
to them yesterday.

Interviewer: Oh well. It happens to all of us Lou.

Goodman: I know.

Interviewer: Kind of slips our mind. Things that we don’t deal with every

Goodman: Yeah. And then my sister Bertha, she married Paul Meyer.

Interviewer: Paul Meyer his name?

Goodman: You know the family?

Interviewer: Yeah. Tell us about Paul.

Goodman: Well he was a great guy. That’s all I can say.

Interviewer: He was a doctor, wasn’t he?

Goodman: Yeah he’s a doctor. He became the, he made all the . . . .

Interviewer: Radiologist?

Goodman: Radiologist. He was the only radiologist in Grant Hospital. And the
man who hired him, he needed him. Well now they got about 25-30 of them, I don’t

Interviewer: What about, they had two sons also, didn’t they?

Goodman: Two sons.

Interviewer: Uh huh. And they’re both . . . .

Goodman: Andy.

Interviewer: Andy?

Goodman: He’s a yard barber.

Interviewer: Well no, wait a minute. That’s their grandson. That’s Esther’s

Goodman: Not Esther. We’re talking about Bertha now.

Interviewer: I mean Bertha, Bertha’s grandson. But Bertha and her husband
had two sons.

Goodman: Yeah . . . . Andy and . . . .

Interviewer: No, no.

Goodman: I’m not talking about that. That I do know.

Interviewer: How about Terry, Terry and Bruce? They had two sons, Terry and

Goodman: Terry? No, they had Harlan.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: And Andy.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: Bruce, Bruce, I think, you’re right about that. Bruce is one of
the sons.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: Bruce and Terry. And they had the other son that I’m talking

Interviewer: Yeah, Andy and . . . .

Goodman: Andy and Harlan.

Interviewer: Harlan.

Goodman: Harlan now took over the, the Paul’s. First Paul had it.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: And then he died. And Terry took it.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: And Terry decided to retire and Harlan has it.

Interviewer: Oh so now it’s down to the third generation in Radiology?

Goodman: Uh huh.

Interviewer: Uh huh. And their other son’s a doctor too, isn’t he?

Goodman: No Bruce is.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: Bruce is a doctor and their son is a doctor.

Interviewer: Who is his son?

Goodman: Uh huh. Bruce is a doctor. He has three sons, Jeffrey.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: And Matthew. Matthew is the youngest. And Jon.

Interviewer: Jon?

Goodman: Yeah, J-o-n.

Interviewer: Okay. Okay. Just trying to get these families straightened out.

Goodman: I’m trying to get them straightened out.

Interviewer: Sometimes you get a little tangled up with who belongs to who.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Well that was a great family then.

Goodman: Yeah and now they all got kids.

Interviewer: Yeah well see, we have to deal with four generations and even

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: That’s a lot to remember Lou.

Goodman: Yeah, like me. I’m a great uncle, see. I’m a great uncle to, I
think there’s about six of them now that I’m a great, great, great uncle.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Yeah it’s down a couple generations now.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Well thank God you’re still here and . . . .

Goodman: I am.

Interviewer: and I’m sure that as time goes on they look at you with great
reverence ’cause you’re the . . . .

Goodman: Oh yeah. They all like me I think. I don’t know, you know. But
they do. Uncle Lou.

Interviewer: Yeah. Well I know it’s always been a close family and . . . .

Goodman: Very close.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: Still are.

Interviewer: I see a lot of you at Agudas Achim during the holidays.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: What about . . . .

Goodman: They come there because of me.

Interviewer: They do? They follow you.

Goodman: Well in the first place there’s the shul there when they
had the Minyanaires. See. I brought seven of them up there, including my son. .
. . . a son. That’s all I got is one son. And I used to make him go. I said,
“You’re going.” And they, “They’re not their father,” I
told them.

Interviewer: Uh huh. What was your interest in Minyanaires? Did you help
start it or how . . . . .

Goodman: No, my brother . . . .

Interviewer: What do you remember about Minyanaires, how did, who started it?

Goodman: My brother.

Interviewer: Which, who?

Goodman: Willie.

Interviewer: Willie? Uh huh.

Goodman: . . . . Willie.

Interviewer: And what was Minyanaires? Tell us what Minyanaires was.

Goodman: Minyanaires was, what it taught them to daven so they’ll be
ready for their Bar Mitzvah.

Interviewer: Bar Mitzvah, uh huh. Do you remember when Minyanaires

Goodman: No. All I know is that as they kept growing up, I kept taking them.
That’s all I know.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Well and they’re probably in their fifties now.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: So.

Goodman: Well you know, what’s his name, the rabbi, the first one?

Interviewer: Rubenstein?

Goodman: Rubenstein. He and my brother and . . . ., you know, they had
fellows, they had the Brotherhood. They’re the ones that really did it.

Interviewer: Uh huh. So Rubenstein came here in the early fifties?

Goodman: Well he came from the big shul.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: He was there. The big shul had him for years.

Interviewer: Rubenstein?

Goodman: Yeah. . . . for years.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: And then they came over to build that shul.

Interviewer: Oh you mean Rubenstein was with the old Agudas Achim. Yeah and
then he came over when they built what they called the new Agudas Achim on East
Broad Street?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Broad and Roosevelt.

Goodman: . . . . 45 years ago.

Interviewer: Yeah, right. Okay, Lou before we get too far away, tell us, you
said you have a son so you were married many years ago and you had a son.

Goodman: Not really.

Interviewer: No?

Goodman: I had a, oh yeah, I had a son and I was, I can’t even remember
when I was married. I was married to this girl and . . . .

Interviewer: Yeah tell us about your first marriage.

Goodman: I had, it was lousy.

Interviewer: Who were you married to?

Goodman: Well I worked out of town. And I was working in Erie, Pennsylvania.
And I married this girl. She was a very pretty girl, beautiful girl. But she had
one bad thing.

Interviewer: Well maybe we don’t want to talk about that?

Goodman: It doesn’t bother me.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Okay.

Goodman: I mean if you want to know . . . . She didn’t trust me.

Interviewer: ‘Cause you were a traveling man?

Goodman: No I was working in town. I was working at a store there.

Interviewer: Oh, okay.

Goodman: I ran a store in Toledo for 10 years.

Interviewer: Okay. We want, I want to talk about your business career but we’ll
be do that in a little while.

Goodman: Okay.

Interviewer: Let’s get your marriage . . . .

Goodman: Anyway, why I say that thing, she would stay in the window and watch
and see if I was coming down the walk with anybody. And I knew she would be up
there lookin’, you know. So I wouldn’t go along with anybody. And I’d come
in and she’d say, “I saw you with that girl.”

Interviewer: What was her name?

Goodman: Oh I don’t know.

Interviewer: Well . . . .

Goodman: Shirley.

Interviewer: Shirley? Okay. And you had a son . . . .

Goodman: She just passed away in January.

Interviewer: Oh she just passed away?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: And I used to go to, into a restaurant with her and I’d, you know,
smile to the girl. I’d never hear the end of it. And . . . .

Interviewer: Well you were a friendly guy.

Goodman: Yes.

Interviewer: What, tell, I don’t want to distract you but . . . .

Goodman: I don’t mind.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: And if I went to a theater, see, and I’d sit there and my wife sat
there and a couple walked in a the girl sits next to me and she says, “Well
I know. I saw you trying to make her.” Well that lasted four years.

Interviewer: Well that sounds like serious jealousy.

Goodman: Yeah it was. She said, “I knew it. I can’t help it.”

Interviewer: Well Lou, you were a nice guy.

Goodman: My boss, my boss used to tell her and everybody else. And I don’t,
I had a little kid . . . . She said, “If I had a son, if I had a baby, I
wouldn’t even know you’re around.” And that’s a bunch of junk.

Interviewer: What’s your son’s name?

Goodman: Ronnie.

Interviewer: Ronnie?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Where does Ron live?

Goodman: Atlanta.

Interviewer: Atlanta, Georgia? Uh huh. Do you know when he was born?

Goodman: Yeah, April 24th, uh huh.

Interviewer: What year? How old is he now?

Goodman: He is, I’m 31 years older than he is, see? Fifty something.

Interviewer: Okay. Do you want to tell us when you were born?

Goodman: Sure.

Interviewer: Okay. Sometimes people don’t want to tell us, but if you do.

Goodman: No, I’m . . . .

Interviewer: Thank God you’re here to tell us, right?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Okay, when were you born?

Goodman: 1911.

Interviewer: Oh okay.

Goodman: I’m 80-, I’ll be 88 years old in March.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Well you’re pretty good for 88. You’re remembering a
lot, a lot more than you thought you would Lou.

Goodman: Well I knew everything before. It bothers me, you know . . . .

Interviewer: Well sure it does.

Goodman: People say, you know, “I want to say something and I can’t
find the words.” And it makes me angry.

Interviewer: You get frustrated?

Goodman: Since I’ve been on the road for, well, outside of that 15 years, I’ve
been on the road for 48 years.

Interviewer: Well let’s hold that for a minute. I just jotted a reminder
for me, but let’s go back . . . .

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: But let’s go back to your son.

Goodman: Oh.

Interviewer: What is he doing? What does he do?

Goodman: He’s a salesman.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: He . . . .

Interviewer: Is he married?

Goodman: Yes. He has one daughter.

Interviewer: Uh huh. And what’s her name?

Goodman: Jessica.

Interviewer: How old is Jessica?

Goodman: 24 or 25. She is a brain. She went to three colleges, two colleges.
Now she’s in her third college. Free, everything . . . .

Interviewer: Scholarship?

Goodman: Scholarship. She wants to be an English professor. And so she’s at
a college that’s part of Berkeley but they’re up in California. And she
teaches too. She gets paid for that and she’s got that.

Interviewer: And she’s only 24?

Goodman: She’s about 24. I think 24 or did I say 25 . . . .

Interviewer: Yeah, but she’s still pretty young to have that background.

Goodman: Oh.

Interviewer: Do you get to see her very often?

Goodman: No, she’s in, she’s living close to San Francisco.

Interviewer: Uh huh. A little community near there?

Goodman: Little town there.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Yeah, that’s pretty far.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Just to visit her Grandpa.

Goodman: I call her on the phone or she calls me, you know.

Interviewer: But you’re in touch?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Tell us about your work career. Tell us about your beginning
jobs. What did you do as a very young man?

Goodman: I . . . . oh, you wouldn’t know all of the, I started 11 years

Interviewer: Eleven years old? That wasn’t unusual though was it? Kids were

Goodman: They were working. But the reason I guess I started then is that
nobody asked me to do it . . . . but I walked down High Street and there was a
fellow there, a good friend of mine, his name was Cooper, one of the Coopers in
town. And I think they’re all gone now. And he had a stand there in front of

Interviewer: What kind of a stand? What did he sell?

Goodman: He was selling newspapers.

Interviewer: Oh, okay.

Goodman: He’d sell newspapers and he had everybody at Lazarus was buying
them, was carrying them in, you know. He was making money. Anything was money.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: See? So I decided I was going to go up and carry newspapers. And I
carried them . . . . You didn’t carry them. You had a corner and that was it.
See. So I did that.

Interviewer: Do you remember what newspapers sold for?

Goodman: Yeah, three cents.

Interviewer: Uh huh. What was the newspaper?

Goodman: Well there was, I sold the Citizen. My brother sold the, my
brother that he started working too. We had the same corner. The corner we had
was on Chestnut and High. He sold the Dispatch. And then I, you know, I
could work from, well say after school, and Sundays and Saturdays, you could
work for hours and all, maybe you’d make a dollar. You . . . . .

Interviewer: Well the newspapers sold for three cents, right?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: And how much of that did you get to keep?

Goodman: A penny.

Interviewer: You got to keep a penny?

Goodman: Uh huh.

Interviewer: Uh huh. So you had to sell a lot of, a hundred newspapers to get
a dollar?

Goodman: Oh I saw, I say a shaygetz, you know . . . .

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: He had a box of candy and he was selling the candy. And I looked at
the guy and I said, “That guy, he’s doing everything wrong.”

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: And I said, “I’m going to do that.” But who’s got
money? So I went to my mother ’cause I, kids when we came home there, we didn’t
keep any money. We just laid it on the table.

Interviewer: It became family money?

Goodman: That’s right.

Interviewer: Sure.

Goodman: Everybody needed money. Everybody was poor.

Interviewer: Yeah.

Goodman: We didn’t know that we were poor. That was life. . . . .

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: So I said, “Mom, I want, I need 50 cents.” She said,
“What for?” I told her. She said, “No, you’re doing all
right.” And I said, “Okay.” So I go back to my corner and there’s
a building there. There was a building there then. And there was a black
attorney. In fact his name, I can remember his name. Mine’s Goodman. This is

Interviewer: Goodwyn?

Goodman: And I walked in there and I said, “I need 50 cents. Would you
loan me 50 cents?” He said, “What for?” And I told him. He said,

Interviewer: So he gave you the 50 cents?

Goodman: Gave me. And I said, “I’ll bring it back” this evening.
So the box of candy was little bars like Hershey Bars. Except they were two for
a nickel in those days. So you bought them, I think, it was 50 cents. And you
had 36 bars in it. So I took them around and I sold them for a nickel apiece. I
wasn’t going to sell them two for a nickel.

Interviewer: Sure.

Goodman: And that’s how I started. By the time I got through with school, I
only went to school half days, I went to school. At noon I was gone.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Was that a regular school day or everybody just went ’till

Goodman: No everybody, no, huh uh. I just didn’t take any rest periods or
anything else. That’s all.

Interviewer: You didn’t take rest periods? So you completed your day by

Goodman: Yeah, I did.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: And I got up to where I was selling five boxes at one time, you

Interviewer: I want to know, did you pay Mr. Goodwyn back?

Goodman: Oh yeah.

Interviewer: Okay. I just wanted to make sure you cleared your debt.

Goodman: I got a better one than that.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: And I would sell. But in the Summer, they were melting and I said .
. . .

Interviewer: Chocolate melts.

Goodman: “What am I going to do?” So they used to have a cart that
you’d just push . . . . They’d blow a whistle and they’d come out and they’d
give you some ice cream. They called it ice cream but it was the worst crap I
ever saw. And I only did it once. And I was, I told them I’d sell plenty of
them so they made it into little half pints. And I sold them for a dime apiece.
But I’d only make 10 percent, see. And I did that and I made two dollars and I
used to have to go, push that cart all the way up to, maybe Hamilton Avenue,
there. I don’t remember the street. Then I said, “This isn’t
right.” I had a lot of ideas, see? And I walked into Moores and Ross Ice
Cream Company.

Interviewer: Moores and Ross? Okay.

Goodman: And I was maybe, maybe 14 years old. Twelve to fourteen. And I
walked in there and they said, “Can we help you?” And I said,
“Yeah I want to see the boss.” And the boss came out, see? He said,
“What can I do for you?”

Interviewer: Do you remember who the boss was?

Goodman: Well I don’t remember his name. I remember what he said. And he
said, “What can I do for you?” I said, “Let’s go in your

Interviewer: You were 14 years old. Okay.

Goodman: Yeah. I said, “Now you make ice cream and you cut it, how many
do you put in a quart?” See?

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: They used to have bars, somehow. He said, “Six, eight and ten.
Whatever you want.” I said, “How much is a ten?” I can’t
remember the price but I knew that I’d bought enough. When I gave him the
money, I didn’t give him the money. I said I didn’t have any money.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: I said, “Well,” I said, “that’s what I want.”
I said, “I want in a three color, you know, chocolate, vanilla and whatever
that other was.”

Interviewer: Strawberry?

Goodman: Strawberry. Wrapped up, you know bars. These guys I went to, I went
to fellows that were mechanics in a car. They had all the, I walked from Fourth
Street all the way up to Washington, I think it is. But on Broad Street. And I
would sell them for ten cents apiece and these guys never even knew what they
were. See? I made, I think that I made, I think I made forty dollars I saved.
But I mean not, there wasn’t that much. And I said, “I haven’t got any
money.” I said, “But I’ll pay you when I get through selling
these.” He said, “You know, I believe you.”

Interviewer: And he trusted you?

Goodman: Yep.

Interviewer: So he gave you the ice cream and you went out?

Goodman: Yeah. There were those big tubs there and they put another bottle in
there and they set around it ice in there and everything else.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Not refrigeration like we know it now?

Goodman: Oh no, huh uh, no.

Interviewer: So you had to sell them fast?

Goodman: No I was in, it was in a container.

Interviewer: Yeah.

Goodman: Well they liked it, you know my customers there and we sold a lot of
ice cream.

Interviewer: So you went into the ice cream business?

Goodman: Yeah. . . . And in the meantime I also worked for a candy company.
There was a candy company on, I went to Mound Street School before I went to
South. And they put me to work. When he needed me . . . . And one Saturday, I
said, “What the heck am I doing to do on Saturdays? They’re not working
or anything.” So they had punch boards, see? So I . . . .

Interviewer: What’s a punch board?

Goodman: Well a little punch board like that they gave, you’d get a stick
and you’d push it through. Tells you what, it’s from one down to a hundred,
see? And it’s got 50, you’d buy 50 boxes of candy, pound, one pound boxes. I
don’t pay for anything until I get through with it . . . . And I took them out
and I said, “Here, you’ll get, everybody gets a pound box of candy. And
you push the button and find out what you’re going to pay, one cent up to a
dollar.” So I got through I think it was $35, see?

Interviewer: Well I’m trying to understand how the punch board worked with
the candy. How did that . . . .

Goodman: The punch board, you’re selling punches.

Interviewer: Oh so you took a chance on the candy that you bought?

Goodman: Uh huh.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: Thirty-five dollars for the candy.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: And thirty-five cents for a box, that’s what they cost, see, and I’d
buy a hundred of them. So that’s what I was going to give away that day.

Interviewer: Oh give away according to the punch?

Goodman: That’s right . . . .

Interviewer: Uh huh, according to the punch board.

Goodman: They pay a punch it out there and it says, “Two,” that’s
all they pay is two cents.

Interviewer: Oh okay.

Goodman: And if it said “Fifty-two,” they paid 52 cents and so on.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: So when I get through I’ve got $50.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: The candy cost me $35. So I made $15. That’s a lot of money in
those days.

Interviewer: Sure. But people enjoyed the chanciness of the punch board.

Goodman: Yeah. Yeah. You know . . . . And one of the customers was one of the
most miserable boss that I ever saw. And he was supposed to be a great guy in
this city and anything he wants, he went to New York. He became the head of the
baseball company.

Interviewer: Do you remember his name?

Goodman: I can’t, I usually do but not, not today.

Interviewer: Well if you think about it later on. Lou, we’re coming to the
end of the tape . . . . Okay, Lou, we’re on Side B now of the first tape and
you were telling us a story about . . . .

Goodman: Well this man, you know, that owned this machinery. He sold Willys
Overlands, you know.

Interviewer: Willys Overlands?

Goodman: That was a car.

Interviewer: Oh the name of an automobile?

Goodman: Yeah. And it was on, well I can’t remember the street name here.
Anyway so I had on my place . . . .

Interviewer: Your territory?

Goodman: My territory. Nobody else had a territory but me . . . .

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: And every time he saw me he said, “Get the hell out of
here.” You know, I’m taking the time from the men, you know. Five men,
they stop to buy a piece, they don’t know what a candy was or a piece of ice
cream. This was during the ice cream. This all happened in November. The one, I’d
keep coming back. I don’t give a damn what they said.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Well you were in business and . . . .

Goodman: Yeah, it’s my company.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: So I was in there this time and he said, “I told you to get the
hell out of here,” and this was November. And, “Now get out.” And
he picked up a hose and poured water on me. And I could have killed him. But I
was back again.

Interviewer: Well he didn’t want you taking time away from the workmen.

Goodman: I know. I know what he wanted. But I know what I wanted too.

Interviewer: Yeah. But you were in business and you needed to sell your

Goodman: That’s right. I’d do it.

Interviewer: You were persistent.

Goodman: If I got asked to leave, say in a building . . . . They don’t want
you in there. They wouldn’t let me go inside the door . . . . downstairs. So I’d
went up . . . . outside the doors, opened the window . . . .

Interviewer: You found another way to get in?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Well it was important to make a living. Okay and how long were
you on the street Lou, doing . . . .

Goodman: Well I graduated high school in 1929. And in 1930 I was in this
business, furniture. I was working for a good furniture company.

Interviewer: Good furniture?

Goodman: My brother was working there. And that’s before he opened up his
store and everybody knew about it.

Interviewer: Uh huh, Willy . . . .

Goodman: Willy opened his store.

Interviewer: Where was Glick’s Furniture?

Goodman: On 65 East Long Street.

Interviewer: Okay. Well see, you remembered that. That’s okay.

Goodman: On some things . . . .

Interviewer: I know, I know. So you were a salesman in the store?

Goodman: Not a salesman. In those days you weren’t a salesman because they
told you you were a salesman. You had to work for it.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: And what they made me do was arrange the floors . . . .

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: the seven floors and things like that and then on, I could, I was
wearing overalls, you know, things like that. And I used to open up the boxes of
the lamps and put the lamps away and this away.

Interviewer: Well it’s kind of a stock, stock boy?

Goodman: Stock boy, yeah.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: But on Saturday I was supposed to get dressed. And stay at the front
and when, in those days, people came in and they said, “Well I’d like to
have Mr. Miller wait on me.” “Well Mr. Miller has a customer right
now. You mind waiting?” “Oh no I don’t mind waiting.” We had a
place about this big and they sat down on the couch and when he came down, I
would get his order and take it back to the office. That’s my duty on
Saturdays And that’s what I did every Saturday. Well I stayed there, I don’t
know, I mean three years. And from there, the next five years, maybe the whole
five years I worked in different places. I worked in Erie, Pennsylvania. I
worked in Cincinnati. I worked in a French town outside of Pittsburgh and . . .

Interviewer: Who did you work for? Who was?

Goodman: I don’t know.

Interviewer: Different people, different companies?

Goodman: Yeah. Just. And I worked in Huntington . . . .

Interviewer: Were you selling furniture all the time?

Goodman: I was working for a furniture company. And then I never got along. I
didn’t like it. In Canton, too. And then so I’d quit in six months or they
fired me when six months or . . . . They didn’t tell me what they wanted from
me, see? So I came back to Colum—, didn’t come back to Columbus. I went to
the furniture show because a fellow here, his name was Rosenthal. That’s the
same fellow I told you went to the shul . . . . When he left here . . . .

Interviewer: Do you remember what Rosenthal’s first name was?

Goodman: Ralph.

Interviewer: Ralph Rosenthal?

Goodman: He lived on Broad Street. Yeah. And he said to me, “Lou,”
he said, “I’m going to . . . . Toledo.” He said, “I need a man
to help me.” He said, “I want an assistant.” He said, “Would
you like to go with me?” And I said, “I’m not ready.” And he
said, “Okay.” So he went to Toledo. Well coming back there I went to
the show this one time and who did I bump into? It’s him.

Interviewer: Rosenthal?

Goodman: Rosenthal. He said, “Lou,” he said, “how are
you?” I said, “I’m fine.” He said, “Are you ready?” I
said, “Yeah.” He said, “Okay, you’re hired.” That was it.
And I was there for ten years. And I got one, I got a salary which was $65 a
week and that was a lot of money in those days.

Interviewer: Yeah it was.

Goodman: But I couldn’t get a raise because the war was on and money was
all frozen. So I had to work for $65 a week for ten years. That was the bad part
of it. But from there I came, I said to him, “Look,” I said, “you
know I ought to leave you now.” He said, “Why?” I said,
“Well,” I said, “now that I need to go out there and get some
business,” and I had a good reputation then, and then and . . . .

Interviewer: What kind of furniture were you selling?

Goodman: Living room. No in the store there I sold everything they had.

Interviewer: In the store?

Goodman: Yeah, in the store.

Interviewer: Uh huh. At Glick’s?

Goodman: At Glick’s.

Interviewer: Yeah. But then . . . .

Goodman: . . . . and then all these other stores . . . . But then when you
went as a salesman on the road and you sold living room furniture?

Goodman: Only.

Interviewer: Only living room? Do you remember the name of the company?

Goodman: Sure, it was Norwalk.

Interviewer: Norwalk?

Goodman: Norwalk. I was with them for 31 years.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: And I told my boss, I said, “Look,” I said, “I could,
what I’d like to do is open a store but I don’t have any money. And if I
wanted a job, you know I can get a job in any store. They all know me.” And
I said, “If I want that, I’d stay right here ’cause you and I get along
good.” Ten years, that’s good. So I said, “I think I’m going to go
on the road.” And that’s how, the man that hired me on the road called on
me to sell me merchandise because I bought all the merchandise that came into
the store. This was the largest store in Toledo. We had seven floors of
furniture beside the warehouses. And I said to him one day, I said, “One of
these days I’m going to take your line out on the road.” And about five
years later I called him, I said, “I’m ready.” He said, “Okay,
we’re glad to have you.” And I was with him for 31 years.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Well you did well with that company.

Goodman: Yes I did. And he said, oh another thing he said to me, he came to
me and he said, “Will you take Indianapolis too?” I had in Columbus
where, not Columbus, Ohio.

Interviewer: You had all of Ohio?

Goodman: All of Ohio. But I only wanted the big cities, the big cities and
big stores. And he said, “You can have Indianapolis if you’re not
scared.” I said, “Well, I’ll,” I knew why he was talking to me
about being scared and I said, “I’m not scared.” And you know, I was
about 29 I think. And the reason he said that to me is that’s the home base
for the Klu Klux Klan, Indianapolis.

Interviewer: Klu Klux Klan? Well that’s interesting.

Goodman: So he thought I’d be scared. I said, “Hell I’m not scared
of those guys.” So . . . .

Interviewer: Well you didn’t have to deal with them.

Goodman: I don’t know who they are.

Interviewer: Right, right.

Goodman: I . . . I could. Maybe I did deal with them. They don’t know . . .

Interviewer: And he was afraid that they’d find that you were Jewish and you were . . . .

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Uh huh. So he was protecting you?

Goodman: He was because, and another thing he was . . . . Germany . . . .

Interviewer: Oh is that . . . .

Goodman: and the factory was German. And he fired a man. And I said,
“What did you fire him for?” He says, “Well he’s

Interviewer: He was German but he wasn’t Jewish?

Goodman: No.

Interviewer: Okay so he was really German?

Goodman: He was German but he was anti-Semitic too.

Interviewer: And he knew that you were Jewish?

Goodman: Oh yeah. I had, I’ll tell you . . . .

Interviewer: But he liked you?

Goodman: Every place and everyone that did business with me, they know right
away I’m Jewish. I tell them.

Interviewer: Were there problems with Klu Klux Klan anyplace else? Were you
aware of that in Ohio?

Goodman: Oh sure. It was in Ohio. They was all over.

Interviewer: What do you remember about Klu Klux, incidents?

Goodman: I didn’t pay any attention to them.

Interviewer: Uh huh. You would just read about them and hear about them?

Goodman: Yeah I’d hear about them. They burned crosses, you know, on your
territory? You know on your land, on your street, anyplace.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Lou, back to your 31 years on the road and after that,
is that when you retired?

Goodman: I retired for one month.

Interviewer: And what year was that?

Goodman: 1981. And I went back to work.

Interviewer: For the same company?

Goodman: No.

Interviewer: No? Who, for who?

Goodman: Let’s see, there was, the first company I worked with was called
Deville. You never know them. And then I worked for, well the reason I stopped
working for them is that some of the salesmen that worked there had money and
they bought, the machine out, bought out, not the machinery, they bought the
company out and this guy and I didn’t get along. He was a Jewish fellow too.

Interviewer: So how long were you with them?

Goodman: From New York. Well I don’t know.

Interviewer: Just a short time?

Goodman: Just a short time. And then I went to another guy and I stayed with
him a short time because he wasn’t, I couldn’t stay with him. And then I got
a, I walked into Sobel and he, I said, the first company I had was at Norwalk
and they had a factory in Cookville, Tennessee. So when I walked out on this
other fellow . . . . I, it was right across the hall so I walked in there and I
said, “I know somebody in Cookville. Maybe he’s here.” And the boss
walked up to me and he said, “Who in the hell are you?” And I said,
“Lou Goodman.” “Oh,” he says, “crimenently, I know more
about you than you know yourself.”

Interviewer: Now this was in 1980, somewhere in there?

Goodman: Yeah. Yeah like that. That was, and I said, “How do you know
me?” He said, “Well your boss told me all about you. You want this
line?” And I said, “I don’t know whether I want this line, I mean.
Tell me what it’s like, what is it, how much is it and everything else.”
So he did and I said, “Okay I’ll take it.” And so he said, “I

can’t do it right now. I don’t have the people working there that much, you
know, to put you on.” He said, “but I’ll,” this was in the
Fall. He said, “I’ll, next year,” he said, “you can come.”
In January he calls me and he says, “You still want that line?” I
said, “What the hell you think I said?” And he said, “Well,”
he said, “the only reason I’m asking you is you, there’s so many people
coming around here asking for the line.”

Interviewer: So he was giving you first chance?

Goodman: Yeah. So I said, “You’d better keep it for me,.” . . .
and he said, “Don’t worry, I will.” So that’s what, that July or
August I started with him.

Interviewer: Uh huh. What was the name of this company?

Goodman: O’Henry.

Interviewer: O’Henry?

Goodman: His name was Henry.

Interviewer: Henry? Uh huh.

Goodman: Harlan Henry was his name.

Interviewer: And where was this? Where was he based in . . . .

Goodman: I just told you but I can’t think of it.

Interviewer: Uh huh. So how long did you stay with them?

Goodman: Well I stayed with him for at least five years. I’d have been with
him yet but he decided to go out of business.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: But it’s a small store but I was doing a lot of money with him.
And he said, “Lou,” he said, “I didn’t want to do this.”
‘Cause I called him around Christmas time and I wanted some information and
the girl, his bookkeeper said, “We’re closed,” which all stores closed
anyway, manufacturers around the last two weeks of Christmastime. And he said,
“I didn’t want to do this Lou,” but he said, “I’m tired of
it.” He said, “I work, I do everything here,” and he told me
everything he does and I knew that. He said, “I had to pay out $175,000 for
health for my people work for me.” And he said, “I had to pay another
$50,000 out for,” he named the other company which I don’t remember.
“And,” he said, “you know I don’t need that.” He said,
“That’s my money. $225,000,” he said, “and I’m doing all the
work and all they want is their money.” He said, “I don’t need
this.” He had money.

Interviewer: So he closed up?

Goodman: So he closed up.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Well was that the end of your career then? Then you
continued on?

Goodman: . . . . Some guy called me that I used to work with at O’Henrys
and first O’Henry said it and I said, “What’s the name of the
company?” And he said, he told me. And I said, “Well that’s the
worst junk I ever saw,” I said. “I don’t sell any cheap junk.”
He said, “Lou, that’s all I know right now.” I said,
“Okay.” So maybe a week later the salesman for his company, he said,
“Lou, I got myself a good line and I think you ought to get it.” I
told the guy that was hiring there, I said, “I gave you a telephone
number.” I said, “Who is it?” and he gave me the name. And I said
the same thing to him. And he said, “I don’t know,” he said, “I
sold so much of this stuff this last three weeks and nothing was wrong,
everything was all right.” And he said, “Why don’t you call
him?” So I called him and he, again he said to me, “Lou, I was just
ready to call you.” I said, “Yeah but I want to know about your line.
The last time I sold it it was the worst junk in the world.” He laughed and
he said, “Yes, you’re right.”

Interviewer: What was the company then?

Goodman: Same name.

Interviewer: But he improved, he improved his line?

Goodman: Yes he did. He . . . . He said, “Lou,” he changed it. And
I said, “Well how do you make it?” He told me where he makes it and I
said, “Well it sounds good.” I said, “Send me the pictures and I’ll
let you know.” So he sent me the pictures and I called him back and I said,
“Okay.” So I took the line. And he didn’t want to fire me.

Interviewer: So you’re still working?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Lou, you’ve had a long career. That’s okay. Keep working.
That’s good.

Goodman: Yeah. I’m getting so old that I’m getting sick of it.

Interviewer: You just travel around Columbus or?

Goodman: Yeah, anyplace I want to go in Ohio.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Lou I have a couple of more things I need to wrap up
with you.

Goodman: Wrap it up.

Interviewer: Okay. Now you’re remarried. Tell us about your second

Goodman: Wonderful.

Interviewer: Okay. And who are you married to?

Goodman: Jane.

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: You know her don’t you?

Interviewer: Jane Finkelstein?

Goodman: That was her name.

Interviewer: Her married, her, yeah.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: What was her maiden name, do you know?

Goodman: Freidenberg.

Interviewer: Freidenberg, okay. She originally from Columbus?

Goodman: Yeah I think so. Yeah, the fact is she worked in Glick’s when I
was there, just for the summer so she had money to go to school.

Interviewer: So this was a long time ago, many years ago?

Goodman: Yeah. That’s when I met her but I hadn’t seen her ’till I came
back to Columbus

after all that other stuff that I was with.

Interviewer: Traveling and . . . .

Goodman: Yeah. And I’m walking, I walked out of Martin’s restaurant, not
restaurant but his . . . .

Interviewer: Martin’s Kosher . . . .

Goodman: Kosher . . . .

Interviewer: Uh huh, butcher shop then.

Goodman: And she and a couple girls were talking. As I walked past, she says,
“Hi Lou.”

Interviewer: She remembered you from the past.

Goodman: And I didn’t know who the hell she was. I didn’t know who she
was for at least a month. ‘Till, I didn’t know who to ask. So I had a date
with some girl and we went to some Chinese place and she was sitting there with
. . . .

Interviewer: Jane, Jane was sitting there?

Goodman: Yeah with another . . . .

Interviewer: With some of her friends?

Goodman: Well yeah. And she said, “Hi Lou,” and I said,
“Hi.” Naturally. And I asked the girl I was with, “Who is
she?” She told me who she was. So I called her and we didn’t get along
the first date. ‘Cause we talked about, well this was twenty years ago.

Interviewer: Uh huh. When were you married to Jane?

Goodman: In, oh, let me see.

Interviewer: You’ve been married almost 20 years?

Goodman: Almost. Just about.

Interviewer: Yeah. Okay.

Goodman: And it’s been wonderful. Best thing I ever had in my life.

Interviewer: Well thank goodness it finally worked for you.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: And Jane has, what, two sons?

Goodman: Two sons. One’s a doctor.

Interviewer: What’s his name?

Goodman: Joel. And the other one is Jim, James, and he’s, has something to
do with a college. He’s one of the bosses of the college.

Interviewer: Like an administrator?

Goodman: Yeah, administrator.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Where do they live?

Goodman: Well they, Jim lives in Washington, D.C. And Joel lives in Boston.
So he’s got a . . . . and he’s with Mass General Hospital.

Interviewer: Mass General?

Goodman: He’s a pretty good boy.

Interviewer: Oh I would say. He’s got a good position.

Goodman: He’s a researcher.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Well that’s great.

Goodman: He lives in Boston. The other one lives in Washington. tomorrow or
Friday Jim’s coming in town.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Are they married, Jim and Joel?

Goodman: Jim is married. Joel isn’t. Should be.

Interviewer: Well he’s too busy doing his career. Tell us about your
schooling Lou. Where did you first go to . . . .

Goodman: Fulton.

Interviewer: Fulton Street School? And . . . .

Goodman: It was just down the street. See I lived on the corner then of
Fulton and Washington.

Interviewer: Okay. And how long were you at Fulton Street School?

Goodman: ‘Till I graduated.

Interviewer: Was that through elementary school?

Goodman: Elementary.

Interviewer: Uh huh. And then where’d you go?

Goodman: Mound Street School. And that’s a three year thing, I think.

Interviewer: Like middle school . . . .?

Goodman: Middle school. And then I went to South High.

Interviewer: And you graduated from South High? Can you tell us about some of
the, some of your friends maybe that you went to school with? Do you remember
any of your buddies?

Goodman: Yeah, one of them, I haven’t seen him in years now that they moved
out of town, Henry Schiff. Abe Dworkin just died about a year ago.

Interviewer: Abe Dworkin? Uh huh. And Henry Schiff you lost track of?

Goodman: Yeah well he got angry or I got angry and we stopped talking to each
other and then the next thing I knew he was, left town. I don’t know what
town. I think it was in New York somewhere.

Interviewer: You kind of lose track.

Goodman: And well, gobs of people but I can’t, you know . . . .

Interviewer: Yeah you kind of haven’t been in touch with them. You didn’t
go to college then did you?

Goodman: No.

Interviewer: You didn’t have to go to college. You had a lot of street
training and . . . .

Goodman: That’s what I wanted to tell you. My mother said to me,
“Lou,” she said, “you want to go to college?” and I said,
“Yeah.” I wanted to go to Miami University up there ’cause I liked
to play football. That’s what I wanted to play. And they had the best football
and the fact is, at that time Paul Brown, that doesn’t mean anything.

Interviewer: Yeah, yeah we know about Paul Brown.

Goodman: And that fellow also, what was, kind of funny name, and he was, he
became a coach with Notre Dame. And they were both up there at the same time.
And I said, “Yes I want to go.” But then I think it was $25, you know.
That, money, $25 was a lot of money too. She said, “Well what do you want
to do? What are you going to make? What do you want to be?” And I said,
“A business.” She said, “For business you can go get a job and
learn the business.” I learned the business.

Interviewer: Well she was wise. She just put you out and you made it work.

Goodman: That’s right.

Interviewer: Uh huh. What about during the war, World War II? Were you
involved in military service?

Goodman: I was a buyer in a store and . . . .

Interviewer: Did that let you out of the military service?

Goodman: No I don’t know why I wasn’t in, I’ll tell you the truth.
Number one: the first time I went to register, the fellow in front of me and the
fellow in back of me were sent to Pearl Harbor. I don’t know why, I mean, they
didn’t send me. Then I went and got a doctor, you know . . . .

Interviewer: Check up?

Goodman: they called them before, a check up . . . .

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: And they gave me a 1A. And I never got called.

Interviewer: You slipped through the cracks?

Goodman: I didn’t do anything about it, you know. I did when they, the last
time they called me. But when they called me one day to go up to Cleveland, you
know, a bunch of us went and that’s the day that Roosevelt died, April 12.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: See that I remember too? And then at, when they were almost
finishing up the, you know, the fact that they called me up again and this time
I didn’t want to go because they wanted me to go to Germany as a policeman.
And I had friends then and my doctor sent a letter to this doctor at Cleveland
and the girl I was taking out knew him and . . . .

Interviewer: So you had connections?

Goodman: I had connections. Then they put me down to a 4 instead of a 1.

Interviewer: 4F or . . . .

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Yeah.

Goodman: Something like that.

Interviewer: Uh huh. So you weren’t qualified then to be in the military?
Uh huh.

Goodman: I did try.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: You know, my wife, we had this baby.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: . . . . And I thought to myself, “My God how’s she going to
live on $25 a week, a month, or whatever?” So they advertised in Detroit
for some, I don’t even know what they call them, but anyway it was a good job.
You were working on a boat, you were in the, you’re the one that hands out
everything, you know.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: Like that. Quartermaster.

Interviewer: Quartermaster? Okay.

Goodman: So I go up there and I take the, they gave me a sheet to sign . . .
. and I answered it.

Interviewer: You answered a questionnaire?

Goodman: Yeah, everything. I wrote a . . . .

Interviewer: Okay.

Goodman: and they said, “You forgot to put down what college you went
to.” I said, “I didn’t go to college.” He said, “Then we
can’t take you.” I said, “Wait a minute,” I said, “you see
these young punks that are coming in here now, they graduated. What the hell do
they know?” I said, “I’m running a store of 60 people, I’m doing
all the buying. You mean I can’t do what they’re doing, even better?”
He said, “You’re right.” He said, “I don’t think you can pass
the thing.”

Interviewer: Another questionnaire?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: He said, “I don’t think you can pass this.”

Interviewer: He wasn’t encouraging you at all?

Goodman: No, and I said to him, “You’ll never know until you give it
to me.” He said, “Okay.”

Interviewer: So you filled it out?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Uh huh.

Goodman: He says, “Okay, you need glasses.” And I said, “Okay,
I’ll get glasses.” So I guess years ago this eye here was damaged and I
didn’t know that. See I’m not wearing glasses now. I do wear to read now a
little bit. And so I came back there and he says, “Well, did you get
glasses?” So I said, “No,” I said, “they said I can’t.
Just got a bad eye.”

Interviewer: So this wasn’t the military then, was it?

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: It was.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: And you’re negotiating the position with the military?

Goodman: Uh huh. Go to Detroit and talk to them. And he said, “Well I
can’t take you then.” I said, “What’s wrong?” He said,
“Well,” he said, “if you was at a fire station,” he said,
“you wouldn’t be able to tell if a plane is 500 yards up or five miles
up.” I said, “I guess you’re right.” “But let me tell you
something,” he said again. I’m giving everybody argument. I said,
“This guy’s got glasses on and in an interviewer he’s at the fire
station and his glasses fall off and break. Can you see anything?” He said,
“No.” And I said, “I can.” He said, “I know you
can,” he said, “but the red tape,” he said, “I can’t do
anything for you. I’d like to have you in a minute,.” . . . See? That’s

Interviewer: So you didn’t get in?

Goodman: I didn’t get in . . . .

Interviewer: But you sure tried.

Goodman: Yeah. So I go to talk to my boss. He said, “What did you
do?” So I told him, “I’m going to try to get on that,” they had
something else real tough, the sailors . . . . just carry the ammunition and
things like that. So he says, “Don’t do anything Lou,” he said.
“I’m going to talk to the boss,” you know our boss in Toledo, not
Toledo, in Detroit. He says, “and I’ll find out what I can do for
you.” And I said, “Okay.” So he came back, he says, “Well, I’ll
tell you what. As long as the war’s on, you don’t go. We’ll give your wife
half your.” . . .

Interviewer: Income?

Goodman: Yeah. And I said, “Okay.” So I didn’t go.

Interviewer: Huh, so it worked out?

Goodman: Yeah it worked out for me. Except they didn’t, they were freezing
my money.

Interviewer: Well, the, it wasn’t just you. It was happening . . . .

Goodman: Oh everybody.

Interviewer: during the war, they . . . .

Goodman: But I was the only one hurting . . . .

Interviewer: sort of put a lid on? Yeah they put a lid on . . . .

Goodman: That’s right.

Interviewer: what you could earn as an income?

Goodman: That’s right.

Interviewer: As a young person, Lou, we’re going back to your youth again,
do you remember any organizations that you might have been involved with? Or
what you did for socialization?

Goodman: . . . . Well we had, everybody had clubs then. And we formed one. It
was called the, oh God, I wouldn’t know what we called it. It had something to
do with athletics and friendship or whatever it was, we had it.

Interviewer: Friendship? Just guys getting together and . . . .

Goodman: Oh we had about 20, 25 members. And I’ve never been . . . . in a
club that I wasn’t the president.

Interviewer: You were always president? You were a leader?

Goodman: I think. And I was president . . . . And . . . .

Interviewer: Was it affiliated with any synagogue?

Goodman: No.

Interviewer: No. But it was all Jewish, was it?

Goodman: All Jewish. And when I went to Toledo, when I went on the road, I
became the president of the Columbus, Ohio Retail Salesmen, furniture re—-. .
. .

Interviewer: Ohio Retail Salesmen organization?

Goodman: Three years. I did it two years in a row and then they wanted me to
help again and I said, “Okay, I’ll do it.” Those are the things I’ve

Interviewer: Yeah. I was just trying to see if you were involved in, you
know, like B’nai B’rith or . . . .

Goodman: Well I’m a member but I don’t, I’ve never been to a meeting.

Interviewer: Or, yeah, or any of the things that kids, you know, young kids
belong to.

Goodman: Well if they’re living at home, and I, the first 31 years on the
weekend I’d come home. I’d come home on a Friday and leave on a Monday. I
did that for 31 years.

Interviewer: So you didn’t have time to be involved in organizations? Yeah.

Goodman: I had enough going just taking care of the furniture company.

Interviewer: Sure. Did you ever, were you ever affiliated or do you remember
going to what was then the Jewish Center, many years ago?

Goodman: When they first opened up I went there to take a rubdown, you know.

Interviewer: Uh huh. But Schonthal, how about Schonthal Center? Do you
remember Schonthal Center?

Goodman: Oh I used to play there.

Interviewer: You played what?

Goodman: Basketball.

Interviewer: Uh huh. Were you into athletics as a youngster? Sounds like you
might have enjoyed. . . .

Goodman: Well I did a little football, baseball. I wasn’t too good at
baseball. Football was my . . . .

Interviewer: Did you play in high school?

Goodman: I went out in high school. That’s where I, I was working, I don’t
have . . . . and what I did, I told my mother in this last year that I was in
high school at the, I said, “Mom, next three months is football. I’m not
going to work.” She said, “Okay,” and I went out and they had
about 100 men going out for the team. But I made it.

Interviewer: Oh.

Goodman: And so I, there were about 40 of us in the game. And it was a new
coach so he had, do you know anything about the high school?

Interviewer: Well my husband graduated from South High.

Goodman: Yeah, well.

Interviewer: I go to the reunions with him.

Goodman: Oh. They had another coach there that coached baseball and
basketball and he wasn’t Jewish. But he liked Jews.

Interviewer: Well there were a lot of Jewish kids going to South High School.

Goodman: Yeah. And he liked them. He used to come and sit with us in the
cafeteria. He’d come around and sit down with us. He said, to me,
“Goodman.” I said, “Yeah.” He said, “I’m going to
call you Murphy. You look like an Irishman.” I said, “Okay you can
call me anything.” Well he got me on the first team.

Interviewer: Oh. Well you must have been a decent player then.

Goodman: I was a decent player but I’m going to come to the reason that
they didn’t play me. So then along comes Rosh Hashonah and Yom Kippur. So I
don’t go out for anything. And I come back and I thought, “I wonder what
I weigh.” And I get on the scale and I didn’t know that the coach was in
there and he said, “For Christ’s sake Goodman, is that all you
weigh?” I said, “That’s what it says, I don’t know.” I
weighed 130 pounds.

Interviewer: Oh boy. That wasn’t enough, huh?

Goodman: And I was on the line and they averaged 200 . . . .

Interviewer: Well they’d kill you.

Goodman: So he wouldn’t put me in. I was just, would go in there and do
everything. you know.

Interviewer: Well you were spunky but you just weren’t big enough.

Goodman: Yeah, yeah.

Interviewer: Lou I want to try to recall some of the places that you might
have lived starting as a kid. You were telling us about the house you lived in
on Elmwood. Where did you live after that?

Goodman: That’s where I was born. I wasn’t old enough to know.

Interviewer: But I mean after that?

Goodman: Oh we lived on Washington Street. My grandfather lived in this house
and my, we lived in a double. So my mother’s sister lived next door to ours.
And then the next house was, his name was George Goodman, Gediah. So he
was a cousin, too. They had us all lined up with that and they’d look at each
other and who’s getting done first for Friday and everything, you know. And
who’s making the best cake and cookies, you know.

Interviewer: But you visited each other and . . . .

Goodman: Oh we’d go . . . .

Interviewer: never lacked for company?

Goodman: Oh no, we always, that’s, you know, in those days everybody had a
porch and everybody sat on the porch and they, it was nice.

Interviewer: Yeah. You didn’t, you didn’t need television or, did you
listen to the radio?

Goodman: I didn’t, I don’t think we had a radio.

Interviewer: Don’t think you even had a radio. Uh huh. Lou, in looking back
through your life, can you tell us maybe about some of the big changes that you’ve
seen? You know, we’re coming to the end of the century and we’re talking
about the new millenium and, I think there’s been, there’s going to be a lot
of recalling of the last century. You’ve lived almost the whole 20th

Goodman: Yeah from 1911 on.

Interviewer: Would you tell us about some of the changes? I can even recall
many changes in my lifetime and like, you know, the use of telephones. Not
everybody had a telephone when we were kids.

Goodman: No, we had one. It was on the wall and you had to crank it.

Interviewer: A crank telephone?

Goodman: Yeah. I think it was called Ohio Bell. I’m not sure.

Interviewer: What about transportation? Do you remember as a kid, did your
dad have a car?

Goodman: Car? There weren’t any cars in town when I was a little kid.

Interviewer: There weren’t any cars?

Goodman: No. They were, once in a while, they didn’t even have a, when
people had a, when an airplane came across, everybody ran out, “Oh look at
the airplane.”

Interviewer: Well that was very rare.

Goodman: Yeah well that was rare. So was a car. There was horses and wagons

Interviewer: Do you remember traveling by horse and wagon?

Goodman: Oh sure. My dad, I, you know, he sold, he bought fruit from a
commission house and then he’d go out in the country to sell it to the people
living there. And then if they had junk, he’d pick it up and take it. See,
that’s what he did.

Interviewer: On the horse and wagon?

Goodman: I used to ride with him. During the Summer and things like that, I
used to ride with him.

Interviewer: Well what was your first recollection of cars?

Goodman: Oh me, I had a good recollection. The minute I started selling ice
cream and those times, that’s who I sold, to people in cars, see. I’d go in,
I’d sit on the car, you know, to see what it was like . . . . like a Reo, did
you ever hear of a Rio?

Interviewer: Rio? Uh huh.

Goodman: All right. That was in my starting place. And then there was a
Franklin. And there was, like I said, a Willys Overland.

Interviewer: Uh huh. These are places that you went to to sell your ice

Goodman: Yeah so I knew they were . . . .

Interviewer: Car agencies?

Goodman: Yeah. They sold cars and the Cadillac, and they’re all on that

Interviewer: What was the first car you owned, do you remember?

Goodman: Yeah. Well let me say it this way, first my brother and I had a Ford
together, one of those open Fords. You know, no cover or anything like that.

Interviewer: Do you remember what it cost you?

Goodman: Didn’t cost me. I don’t remember where we bought it. I can’t
remember that. But then we moved over on Ann Street and my father brought in a
car for me. It was a, he paid $10 for it. It was a little coupe, Chevrolet coupe
with a rumble seat. And he also got his tires from a junk shop. And I paid $4
for the license and that’s all I know about the price. So my mother made a
sheet and washed it and everything else so I’d have one to carry, you know,
sit on the seat in the front to drive my car.

Interviewer: So it was like a cover?

Goodman: Yeah. And I had to crank it.

Interviewer: Oh yeah.

Goodman: And that was my first car.

Interviewer: Uh huh. But it was yours?

Goodman: Oh yeah. Well I . . . . I took the, the kids I played with went in
and they all went with me. It cost them a nickel to ride with me. I said,
“Well I don’t have any money for gas.”

Interviewer: Oh you charged them, where would you go? Do you remember places
that you might have gone as a kid in your car? Now you were a teenager then?

Goodman: Yeah and I’d take them to plays, whatever we was playing, baseball
or football or things like that.

Interviewer: Did you go to movies?

Goodman: Yeah for ten cents. And a penny for candy.

Interviewer: But what was, do you remember what theater you used to go to as
a kid?

Goodman: Yeah it was down on Whittier Street or on Main Street, was the Main
and the New on the, that was from Washington to Grant.

Interviewer: Uh huh. It sounds like you have a lot of nice recollections of
your youth but you were a worker. You were a hard worker.

Goodman: Oh I was working all the time. Just like now, I, you know. I can’t
do everything maybe I want to do. I will now but . . . .

Interviewer: Yeah but you’re still working, even at this stage of your
life. But you take time off if you want whenever you feel . . . .

Goodman: I’m my boss.

Interviewer: Uh huh, well that’s good. You have the freedom.

Goodman: Yeah.

Interviewer: Well Lou we’re almost at the end of the tape, Side B of this
tape. Do you have any feelings that you want to share with us as far as future
or past?

Goodman: No I’m, I feel fine, I mean.

Interviewer: You’re looking forward to continue working as long as you can
and . . . .

Goodman: I don’t know. I have been but, I haven’t worked this year yet.

Interviewer: Oh well, the year is young.

Goodman: Yeah . . . . I don’t know. When I start working I’ll find out
whether I want to keep it up or not.

Interviewer: Uh huh. You’re not worried about getting fired or anything
like that?

Goodman: No, I don’t care if they do.

Interviewer: Lou, on behalf of the Columbus Jewish Historical Society, I’m
going to take this time to thank you and . . . .

Goodman: That’s okay.

Interviewer: I hope we haven’t taxed you too much with trying to remember
the past . . . .

Goodman: No.

Interviewer: but we all have that short memory too. And I hope you look
forward to many more years of working and enjoying life. And thank you.

Goodman: Okay.

* * *

Transcribed by Honey Abramson

Proofread by Marvin Bonowitz

Edited by Peggy Kaplan