Family history of my childhood and immediate family

This is a site about my parents, Peter and Marcy Hartman, and my brother Jay, and me. Especially when I was a kid.

For now, it’s specifically for posting a set of letters that my family wrote to Peter’s parents from 1968 through 1996.

(For letters that Marcy wrote to her parents before I was born, see my site about Marcy.)

I digitized and annotated and posted about three letters a week here throughout 2022 and early 2023.

If you want a better sense of where all the referred-to places are and how much we moved around, see the map of places we lived.

Below are three options for ways to navigate through the letters.

1. View a list of all letters in order, with a description of each

To view a list of all the letters, starting with the first one in 1968, visit the Posts page. You can then choose which letters to look at.

Each page of posts lists ten letters, with descriptions; to view a list of the next ten letters, use the Next button at the bottom of the page.

2. View lists of letters from each period of our life

I’ve divided up the letters roughly into several periods. Here are the periods so far:

1968: Harbinger
A commune at Harbin Hot Springs.
1969–1970: Post-Harbinger
A somewhat aimless period during which we lived in Modesto, Oakland, Richmond, and El Cerrito.
1970–1972: UC Berkeley
Peter finished his undergrad degree at Berkeley, majoring in math-for-teachers.
1972–1973: Awareness House
Peter worked as a drug-abuse counselor at the Rising Sun Awareness House in Tracy.
1973–1975: Hearthlight
Peter and Marcy started a foster home for (as they put it) “mentally and emotionally disturbed teenagers.”
1975–1978: Cotati
After Peter and Marcy ended the foster home, we moved to nearby Cotati, where P&M worked at a bookstore for a while, and Marcy spent a little time in grad school, and Peter learned more about computers and got his first computer job.
1978-1988: Palo Alto
In 1978, Peter got a job doing computer stuff for Oroweat, which required him to live in the Palo Alto area, so we moved there.
1988-1996: Post-Palo Alto
I left for college in 1986; Jay left for college in 1988; there are only a few letters after that point, so I put those in a separate post-Palo-Alto category.

3. Read through all the letters in order

If you want to start at the beginning and read through all of the letters, without descriptions, you can go to the first letter, read through it, and then click the Next Post link at the end of the letter. Then repeat until you reach the end.