After graduating on June 3, 1949, Walt arranged for a teaching job at Roberts High School just north of Idaho Falls, beginning in the fall school year.
He traveled to Idaho Falls and worked at what would have been a summer job as apprentice electrician with Jewel Electric. The U.S. Atomic Energy Commission had selected Idaho Falls as the headquarters of the National Reactor Testing Station (NRTS) on the desert west of the city. The population of the city would double during the next decade.
By fall he was earning more money as an electrician than he would as a teacher, so he continued working as an electrician until retirement many years later.
Erline and the three sons–who had remained in Logan for the summer–rode the Greyhound bus to Idaho Falls in August. Unfortunately, because of an acute housing shortage, the only housing they could find was a converted garage at 139 1/2 4th Street in Idaho Falls.
This photo (taken July 6, 1916) is the home in front of the garage:
Here are photos of the “garage” as it looks July 6, 2016:
The family lived at 139 1/2 4th Street until their new house on North Blvd. was completed.
The garage in 1949 was apparently very cold that winter. Lighting was from a single light bulb in a porcelain keyless lampholder that Walt installed.