Lewis William Selmeier
So far this page is notes to myself about what I might write as I uncover photos and data while clearing out old boxes.
He always wanted to be an advertising copywriter.
Graduated from Principia College in 1934 and then got in roadster with one of the Andrews brothers and headed west
got fired for writing poetry on the job
During war was in army in ordinance in Cincinnati, took initiative inappropriately and got shipped to France where he was put behind a desk. See What did your Dad do in the war?
VP of RCA when he quit and broke out on his own to start Paradise Pools, putting the first swimming pool in our own backyard. A ritual that continued for 25 years after that was going for a swim every summer night before going to sleep. Often the day began with a swim first thing in the morning. We never air conditioned that house because we knew we'd spend less time outside cooling off in the pool if we did. We lived around the pool during warm months.
But after one season building pools, he realized that that wasn't what he wanted to do and started his own advertising agency (with three children under the age of 8). Ran the "Lewis W. Selmeier Advertising" agency for the rest of his life.
One day came home from the office saying that he had yet another opportunity to expand his business, but he was wondering why he would. This was during an era in which there was a 90% tax bracket. He would have to hire more employees and work even longer hours but keep almost nothing for the risk and the effort. He said said he might as well buy a boat. So he did. A year later he bought a bigger one. On Friday afternoons in the summer we used to drive to his office to pick him up on the way to the marina. On Monday morning we'd drop him back off at his office, in the same suit in which he'd left on Friday. He'd slept in a tent on the river bank and shaved in the river water and had not gone home since Friday. Summers revolved around the boat. In her final days, Mom said that she wanted her ashes thrown in the stretch of river where we used to have a camp on the riverbank, the place where we used to spend those weekends. We did the equivalent.
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