Good Mo'ning, deah Yankees - everywheah!
How Yo'all? (Now, I realize that the above salutation does not quite ring true. 'Deah' was not quite the word the southerners used in referring to the Yankees. Also, 'yankee' was not honored with a capital. However, you are dear Yankees to me. A new book, just completed by a Georgia U. professor, Dr. E. Merton Coulter, called "The Confederate States of America - 1861-1865," dwells at some length, so the reviewer says, on "the ravages committed by Sherman's Army in Georgia" in his famous - or infamous - March to the Sea. The South is not going to forget - nor let the North forget - what we did to them. In preparing for this journey to Atlanta - perhaps unconsciously warming up to the land of my sojourn - I told Virgil about the remark of Cleveland's top book reviewer. When "Gone With the Wind" came out (in '35 or '36 - I forget), Leila Heath Neff said, in her opening remarks, "Never again do I want to hear that song, 'Marching Through Georgia'." Virgil, with his practical mind, replied, "They would have done the same thing to us, if they had had the chance." At any rate, I am going to read this book - to get a scholarly southern historian's viewpoint. I'd better qualify that statement, and say that I'm going to read it if I can ever stay awake long enough evenings to do any reading. Before coming here I had visions of myriad safaris to the spots replete with historic interest. After a full day "in the field" in the chill wind that they say I brought with me to Atlanta, I thaw out in my cozy room, only to flop on the bed after supper - "Gone with the wind." By the way, my lovely landlady, a doctor's widow, is going to take me to Tara Hall, Scarlett O'Hara's home in "Gone With the Wind" - which is only 23 miles south of here. I can hardly wait.
It just about tore me apart to have to pass up a wonderful trip and tour through Savannah. A Garden Tour, sponsored by the Garden Clubs of Savannah. Just imagine visiting mansions, one of whose iron grill work alone cost $100,000! Ah, me! Will I ever get such a chance again? If I had had the bus fare, I fully believe that the Garden Clubs of Savannah would have honored Mr. Walker's Courtesy note that he wrote for me five years ago. (It is dateless, thank goodness). But Simon Legree would never let me go. If I ever had any illusions about "conquering the South," they are quickly dispelled. I am just a slave - with a drawing account from the L.J. Bullard Co. of Cleveland, publishers of "How and Why," incomparable program of Mental Development for the very young. My manager, C.E. Ruppelt, is a tall, spare Spartan - the kind who takes an ice-cold shower every morning; the kind who thinks we self-indulgent mortals eat far too much; the kind who loves to deposit his load of women workers in a "fertile" area about a mile from the nearest lunch grill. For two days I worked right through the lunch hours, and he thought that was just ducky. Seriously, he is a grand person, as upright as a Scotch preacher, as industrious as a bee - as patient as Job, with a subtle twinkle in those steel-blue eyes. The first day out - when a pouring rain drove us to the Public Library for shelter, this cocky Clevelander tried to tell him how to sell. I believe in making a second call - to present the program to the husbands. He said, "If you're going to do that, you'd better go back to Cleveland right now." And those rapier eyes pinioned me to the wall. So, you see, I'm just a slave. His lovely wife, a former teacher of voice at Cincinnati College of Music, is with him in this work. They raised their own children on "How and Why." When all three were in college at the same time, the mother started selling. Then her husband joined her. A wonderful team, and from Pittsburgh.
Now I must close. Sorry to have talked shop so much. But that's all I know of Atlanta and environs - so far. Better reading next time.
Florence B. Taylor
Next - 3/30/50 - Spring in Atlanta GA
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