F. Malcolm Benitz Page last modified:

University of Illinois
Frank – Scrappy
1935 – 1938

To most everyone in the U.S., Malcolm was known as Frank Benitz.  His father thought “Malcolm” would be made fun of and recommended he use “Frank”.  He thoroughly enjoyed his years in the U.S., taking the opportunity to visit distant cousins and tour the country by car.  Like his father, he attended the University of Illinois (at Urbana-Champaign, IL) and joined the Phi Delta Theta fraternity, where he made some life-long friends, Johnny Edwards, Walt Draper, & Emmerson Ward - with whom he exchanged yearly letters.  His fraternity brothers nicknamed him Scrappy for his determination.

And determination he needed.  He had to complete secondary school at the University High-School (June 1935 – January, 1936) before he was admitted to the university (February, 1936).  He completed five semesters at the university‘s College of Agriculture.  (We believe he suffered from dyslexia – he read very slowly; one son and a grandchild have suffered from it.)

Trip to California:  On June 8, 1938, he bought a Ford car ($75) from Jay Wardley (a fellow Phi Delt) and drove out to California with Xxxx XXXX (also a Phi Delt).  They camped at rural schools along the way; closed for the summer, the schools always had a water-pump.  Even so, the trip expenses were more than exptected and he had to wire home for more funds.  He visited national parks (Yellowstone) and made the pilgrimage to Fort Ross, where he stayed with the Call family.  Years later he recalled them fondly.

Malcolm returned to Argentina by cargo boat, departing from New York on September 12.

Initial Content
On strike!

Letters Received by Malcolm

Rodney Sympson, 17 Nov. 1937; “La California”, Las Rosas/SFé
Long type-written (his custom) letter from Rod, who was working as a segundo at “La California”; accounts of life there & at a party in Venado Tuerto.  Many people mentioned: “your Pop“ (Willie Bz), Frank (Bell), Aunty Olga (Horner-Bz), Jimmy (Roberts), Pedro ??, Cavanagh (brothers), Don Alberto (mayordomo), Ernie ??, Marjory (Sympson), Aunt Jo (Webster), Eva Cavanagh, Roberts's, Hamilton (manager, Campo Winter), Dennison's, Cadmus's, Douglas's, Margaret (Douglas), George Daly, George Cadmus, Murphy's, Cutts, Murray Stallard, Arturo Kenny, Billy & Eve Storey, Cuff.

FMB-Univ-01

Missing image.

U. of I., Permit to Enter
February 8, 1936
(Source: P. Benitz)

FMB-Univ-02

Missing image.

1936 Christmas Holidays
Visiting Allyn Cousins

Corsicana, Texas

FMB-Univ-03

Missing image.

Fraternity Prank
1936 or 1937
(Source: P. Benitz)

 

FMB-Univ-04

Missing image.

Univertity ID - 1937-1938
(Source: P. Benitz)

FMB-Univ-05

Missing image.

John Edwards
Probably Malcolm’s Best Friend
Phi Delta Theta, 1938
(Source: P. Benitz)

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FMB-Univ-06

Missing image.

Phi Delta Theta - Eta chapter house
309 E. Chalmers, Champaign, IL
(Source: P. Benitz)

FMB-Univ-07

Missing image.

Phi Delt members, 1938?
Malcolm is not in the photo.
“Scrappy” is written on its back
(Source: P. Benitz)

FMB-Univ-08

Missing image.

Phi Delt dance, 1938?
(Source: P. Benitz)

— Yet to Add - Drive to West Coast —
 

FMB-Univ-91

Missing image.

U.S. Departing Alien Income Tax
September 12, 1938
(Source: P. Benitz)

FMB-Univ-92

Missing image.

Passage NY–BA, S.S. Astri
September 12, 1938
(Source: P. Benitz)

 

© Peter Benitz (Benitz Family)