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Iowa Woman Researches Father, Looks to Harrison

HARRISON, N.Y. - A journalism professor in Iowa is reaching out to the residents of Harrison to learn more about her late father, who lived and went to school in town. Judy Polumbaum said she was looking for any information locals might have related to her father Ted's family when they lived in Harrison before World War II.

Theodore Polumbaum graduated from Harrison High School in 1942 and edited the school's newspaper. He lived with older sister Peggy and younger brother Bobby in a home they moved into on Valley Ridge Road around 1938 with parents Phil and Minnie, Judy Polumbaum said.

"I’m on this quest as part of a research project on my dad’s life and times to produce a website and book," Judy Polumbaum said.

Ted Polumbaum became a successful photojournalist based in the Boston area but traveled often while working for LIFE and other publications. His photo archives reside with the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

"My dad was close to his three children and we knew him well," Judy Polumbaum said. "But I made the mistake that probably most offspring do, and failed to learn everything I could about him while he was still alive. I’m exploring his personal story, which includes a stint in the Army, an Ivy League education completed on the G.I. bill, a face-off with congressional inquisitors, travels across the U.S. and around the world, and quiet but determined political activism around peace and civil rights."

Ted Polumbaum was born in Brooklyn, spent part of his youth in Mamaroneck and lived in Harrison during his high school years, Judy Polumbaum said.

"I want to get a sense of the ambiance of the times in the various places my dad lived — including those early years in Mamaroneck and Harrison."

Any clues, contacts, reminiscences, memorabilia, issues of "Maroon Murmurs," the old Harrison High School newspaper from 1940 to 1942, or ideas can be directed to Judy Polumbaum .

She can be reached at her Iowa University office at (319) 335-3389 or her cell phone at (319) 321-6914. She can also be reached by mail at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, E-320 Adler Journalism Building, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242.

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