Robert Burdick’s Growing Up in Beloit, serves as both an homage to coming of age in a gentler era, and as a poignant love letter to his beloved Midwestern hometown. In a lively narrative, Burdick brings to life the universal exuberance and industry of youth, from comic adventures, pranks, and pratfalls, to the more serious business of navigating academics at school and experiencing hard work at a variety of jobs. Burdick has the gift of perfect recall, providing minute details about the construction of a lakeside treehouse, and the mechanics of both his Soap Box Derby car, and the engine-powered go-cart he dubbed the “Putt-Putt Car.” Throughout his lively memoir, Burdick also paints meaningful word portraits of family, friends, and mentors. His vivid descriptions of daily life in Beloit, Wisconsin in the 1940s and 1950s will appeal to locals interested in community history…and to anyone yearning to slip back in time for an amiable visit with a likeable young man.
Beloit College Archivist and author