All together, we have about 30 inches of snow on the ground at my house. My husband has dug a path down the driveway to the street … which probably won’t be shoveled by the county until Wednesday.
I’m not going anywhere for a few days. Thankfully, we have plenty of provisions and firewood, and PEPCO has been on its toes — no lack of power.
The kids will be out of school until (most likely) Thursday. I can work from here except for actual writing on the book; unfortunately, with the young kids in and out all day, it is too distracting. So, I decided to spend time checking back with archives, checking in with sources, revisiting outlines, organizing information. And just out of curiosity, I checked, and yes, Mercury is in retrograde. Ironic?
Checking back in with sources is often the step that gets overlooked or forgotten, so I don’t consider this negative, or as if I’m spinning my wheels.
It’s been productive over the last few days, too.
- On Friday, I checked into Florida State University’s Heritage Protocol & University Archives, and discovered they’ve added the Platonic Debating Society Book, 1897-1904. The book includes meeting minutes, debates, assignment of officers and debate contestants. According to the collection note:
“The order of business for regular meetings included such proceedings as regular debate, decision of judges, irregular debate, decision by the house, and the appointment of debaters, officers and committees. During regular debates, each speaker was given fifteen minutes to make his argument and five minutes for a rejoinder.” This is where Emmett would have practiced his early debates, and gained debating skills and feedback! Imagine — finding text of some of his early speeches! I’ve asked for a copy of anything relating to him from this book. I can’t wait to hear back from the archivist!
The excellent Sue Tindel over at the Jackson (Florida) County Clerk’s office found contact information for the grandson of Eudora (‘Dora’) Neely Wilson Smith. Dora was the oldest daughter of Dr. FC and Elizabeth Wilson; she was about four years older than Katie Wilson Meade. I have no photos of Dora, or anything else other than a few clippings from various newspapers about her life. Her husband was Wynter Elijah Bryan Smith, a lawyer and state representative. They had one child, a daughter. That daughter had one child, a son. I have written a letter to the gentleman, and I hope to hear back from him.
- Yesterday, I spent most of the day tracking down Meade Wilson’s descendants. He had two sons, Meade Jr. and Francis M. Wilson. Both are deceased; Meade Jr. did not have children. Unfortunately, I’ve found out that Francis M. Wilson and his son, Francis Jr., are also now deceased. The last known address of the family was Lakeland, Florida.
The challenge: Once you get into the third generation (great-grandchildren) and beyond, the likelihood that memorabilia, letters, and so forth about any of the original Wilson siblings is greatly reduced.
However, it would seem to me that if a member of a family held national- or state-elected office, that information would be worth keeping, or, donating to a library or historical society.
My next task will be to check in with state and local libraries and historical societies, for new additions.
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