A Synopsis of the Story to Date...

("Today's Children" Family Album)

"Jest a plain American family," Mother Moran would call the people who make up her household. And that is just about what they are---they, and all their friends whom we have come to know---just average people, going through experiences that almost every one of us goes through at some time in our own lives.

Mary Moran---"Mother Moran" as she is affectionately known---is a widow with three grown-up children. The problems and experiences she has met have given her a warm-hearted understanding and a common-sense philosophy. She has found that modern conditions and modern problems have placed unusual strains on er grown-up children, as they have on all the young men and women of today.

Frances Moran, the elder of two daughters, is a commercial artist, with a background of several years of successful business experience. About three years ago she met and fell in love with Ralph Martin, an executive of the Lane Advertising Agency. At the time, Frances did not know that he was married. When she found out, she broke with him immediately, in spite of her deep love for him. Later on, however, he made it plain to her that he was not considering marriage, Frances, broken-hearted for a time, later seemed to forget, and became very friendly with a man whom the whole family admired greatly, Henry Matthews. He is the wealthy owner of a rug-importing business and is a widower with two children of school age. Quiet and fine, Henry Matthews has loved Frances deeply for over a year. After asking her several times to marry him, he finally demanded a definite answer and when Frances said she was unable to give him back such an answer, Henry left for California. Just before Henry left, Ralph Martin again entered Frances' life. What part he is to play in her future, no one knows.

Eileen, Mother Moran's youngest, is gifted with a beautiful voice. During her studies in Italy, it became necessary for her to have a throat operation, which injured her voice, so that a career in opera was no longer possible for her. When she returned home. She was broken-hearted and discouraged, but with the loving encouragement of Mother Moran, Eileen eventually turned to radio, where she has begun to find success. Although she is attractive to men, only one, Bill Taylor, seems to have interested her at all deeply. However, she likes Donald Carter, head of the Lane Advertising Agency's Chicago office. Bill met her when his father's company took over the sponsorship of Eileen's "Magic Lamp" program. Bill Taylor had always been far more interested in writing than in the practical details of his father's business. At the time he first came to Chicago to assist Eileen with the radio program, he was engaged to a girl in New York, but he found in Eileen the one real love of his life. His family were furious because Bill broke his engagement and they were even more furious when they found out that he was deeply in love with Eileen, whom they looked upon as an adventuress. When she told Bill that she could not marry him, he gave up his position with his father's company and established himself on an Arizona ranch with the avowed purpose of finishing the book he had always wanted to write. Whether Eileen's feelings for Bill are deeper than she has said, we do not know, but since that time she has indicated on one or two occasions that she is not quite so sure that a career is to be preferred to marriage and a home.

Terry Moran, hard-working advertising executive, Dorothy, his wife, and their two children, Lucy and little Bobby, have felt the strain of the economic changes that have taken place during the last five years. For a time, it was necessary for them to cut down expenses, and as a result they took an upstairs apartment in the two-flat building which Mother Moran owns. Like every other young family of today, the Terry Morans have had their personal problems, their quarrels and their happiness. Dorothy is very ambitious for Terry's success and for her children. This has occasionally led to her social aspirations with which Terry has not been greatly in sympathy. Mother Moran calls little Lucy, ten years old, a "tomorrow's child." Nevertheless, Lucy has her little problems, even today. For a while she was made unhappy by a natural childlike jealousy over the extra attention paid to her baby brother, Bobby, now two years old, but this feeling soon disappeared.

Katherine (Norton) Crane was left an orphan when a child, and has had an unusual history. She had thought herself to be a distant relative of Mother Moran's during the several years she lived as a member of the Moran household. Then, shortly after she met Bob Crane, she discovered that her true parentage was not what she thought it was, but was in reality a mystery. Katherine refused to marry Bob until this mystery is cleared up. Through investigations by Bob and Judge McCoy, a friend of the family, it finally developed that Katherine's real mother had left her father shortly before Katherine was born, and had died not long afterward, leaving Katherine in the care of her friends, the Nortons. Katherine's father, a Carl Ross, unaware of her birth, had gone to Alaska and disappeared. Later on he was reported to have died in a blizzard. Bob's efforts to locate Katherine's father carried him finally to the Lane Advertising Agency, in New York, where he talked with Mr. Carter, head of the agency. Later on. Mr. Carter's daughter, Katherine, a sister of Donald Carter, of the Lane Advertising Agency, came to Chicago to study art, and developed an immediate and noticeably close friendship with Katherine Norton. Members of the Moran family often remarked that the two girls looked enough alike to be sisters. In any event, when the mystery surrounding her parentage was apparently cleared away, Katherine gave up her secretarial position and married Bob Crane.

The son of a typical farming family, Bob was ambitious to study law, and came to Chicago, where he completed his legal studies. A year or so later he met Frances, and thus Mother Moran. Because of Bob's interest in reform politics, Mother Moran finally induced him to run as the Community Civic Club's reform candidate for ward alderman, and he was elected. Shortly after Bob and Katherine were married, his investigations into certain angles of political graft made him dangerous to the ring that controlled local politics. Though a series of frame-ups, they almost succeeded in having him disbarred from legal practice, and removed from public office. When he was finally able to clear himself of these false charges, Bob, completely disgusted with political life, resigned from his position as alderman. He and Katherine then decided to move to a small town where life would move more slowly and easily---more in keeping with their own temperaments and desires. Just at this time his father's farm hoe was completely destroyed by fire, and the tremendous financial burden which this accident threw on Bob forced Katherine to give up their plans to move to Arcadia. Bob had also undertaken the responsibility of financing the college education of his brother Dick, who finally decided, after several upsetting experiences, that he did want an education very much.

Lately we have come to know Adam Bridges, a retired farmer who has taken quite an interest in Aunt Carrie, Mother Moran's sister. Both middle-aged, they often find themselves at temperamental swords points with each other, but their friendship seems to be growing none the less.

In recent moths, through the influence of a Mr. William Edwards, whom Bob and Kay met while on their honeymoon in Bermuda, Bob is again becoming more and more interested in reform politics. Katherine both fears and resents this intrusion of public life into her home. She is afraid not only for Bob's personal safety, but also fears that his connection with the wealthy and important people backing this reform movement is going to come between Bob and herself. She thinks often of the tragedy of her mother's life, because the separation between her mother and her father came about through somewhat similar circumstances.

Katherine's fears for Bob's safety and future, if he re-enters politics, have been increased through her conversations with Arthur Donely, a political reporter on one of the city's big papers. Arthur Donely, a casual acquaintance of Fran's, has come to take more and more of an interest in Bob's political activities. Katherine feels that his warnings as to what may happen to Bob if he continues in reform politics, are sincere; Bob, on the other hand, feels that Donley, for reasons of his own, is simply trying to frighten him away from his work of political reform.

For a time Katherine seemed to make an attempt to assist Bob in his political work by joining the activities of the women's branch of the Civic Reform Party. There she met and became very friendly with a Mrs. Joan Young. Mrs. Young is the charming and gracious wife of a man many years her senior. She has sought escape from a very unpleasant marital situation by her connection with the Civic Reform Party, and has become a great admirer of the work Bob is attempting to do in governmental reform.

These people, and other, with their experiences, problems, sorrows and joys, all seem somehow to revolve around the unassuming person of Mother Moran. When she has been asked for counsel and advice she has ventured a bit of her own common-sense thinking, or some of the wise philosophy she has gained in her voyage through the none-too-quiet seas of her own life.

Perhaps without realizing it, these people who know her have come to look upon Mother Moran as a steady rock of understanding live and encouragement, always ready, always there.

And when "Today's Children" do think of all Mother Moran means to them, their hearts and their minds are filled with respect, admiration and deep love.

What the future will bring into their lives, no one knows. How will Eileen settle the age-old problem of career versus marriage? Will Fran marry Henry Matthews or will her renewed interest in Ralph Martin lead to further complications? Will Bob make a success in politics or is he merely headed for more trouble, and just what does Kay think of the whole business? Listen---and find out.

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