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would purloin really valuable papers. As for their being called
“the pumpkin papers,” the only reason they were called that
was because Chambers put them in a pumpkin long enough to go
down and get the local district attorney in Westminster, Maryland.
They weren't in that pumpkin more than a half hour. If
they had been in there any longer they would have rotten. In
a growing pumpkin the acid would have spoiled them. That's
how things often become famous!
Interestingly enough, it's in Westminster, Maryland,
where he lived that we built our warehouse. I'd forgotten all
about this until I went down to look at the new warehouse. I
said to myself, “I've been here before.” I suddenly saw the
main street and I said, “Say, this is where Whittaker Chambers
lives!" I'd forgotten all about it.
Whit and Mrs. Chambers invited us down there for a night.
Whit said, “Maybe you'd like to see the pumpkin and the house.”
I said, “You're damned right I would.” I remember our trepidation
before we went down there...what were we going to talk
about? Well, I found myself sprawling on the back porch with
Whittaker, who was a lazy gent. Esther did all of the work.
She cooked meals and cleaned the house and took care of the
two boys. We found ourselves grumbling together about the
Columbia football team. That's the last thing in the world that
I thought that Whittaker Chambers and I would talk about.
Columbia was losing all of its games and we were both very annoyed
about this and agreed that their coach was an incompetent.
Suddenly I burst out laughing. I said, “If anybody could get
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