In The Beginning

The Hotvedt family home in Eau Claire as illustrated by Clarence
on the family tree.

On April 16, 1900, very near the start of the eventful 20th century the air was rent with the squalls of a new-born babe: one Clarence Hotvedt. The scene was an old eight-room house on East Grand Avenue in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. I was born the seventh of ten children. 
 
I graduated from high school in 1919 and immediately got a job with the Wisconsin Bell Telephone Co. I felt mighty proud when I walked up to the railroad ticket agent and bought my ticket to Hudson, Wis., where I was to start working. I started as a groundman or “grunt” as we were called. Worked all over our Wisconsin territory – Merrill, Merillan, Menominee, Chippewa Falls, Elk Mound, Sheboygan, Kewaunee, Wisconsin Rapids, Black River Falls and elsewhere. The most I ever made was $100 per month plus expenses as a lineman.
 
So, after my boyhood jobs, caddying, working at the light co., and that period from my high school graduation to entering the University I had saved up about $600 to go to the University on which I think was pretty good in those days. 

A young Clarence on left and from 1917 on right.

In his autobiography he recognizes the talent of his sister Mabel writing,
"My second oldest sister Mabel was the artist in the family. She never went to art school but learned to work well with water colors."

Mabel and two of her watercolors.