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Chapter 110: The best of everything

Wednesday, January 3, 1906Sterling, Illinois It was breathtaking, the snow, all blinding white, crisp, clean, cold. White fluffy drifts and dunes everywhere. I felt light hearted. “This is wonderful,” I said to Sydney Anning, as I looked around at the blinding whiteness that was everywhere. There had been a fresh […]

Chapter 109: The Annings

January 1, 1906The Boardinghouse of Mrs. Luella S. Anning802 West Third Street, Sterling, Illinois Nick had taken charge of everything related to my moving to Sterling. He’d even taken charge of finding my boarding house.  I would have gladly made my own arrangements, but I had no idea where to […]

Chapter 107: New From the South

May 1, 2015Chevy Chase, Maryland I’ve been reading microfilm for hours. My eyes are dry. But what a freaking goldmine. Not only am I finding long-missing information about Emmett Wilson’s wherabouts during 1905 and 1906, there is a ton of contextual information about Nicholas Van Sant, Emmett’s roommates at his […]

Chapter 105: Transition

November 5, 2020Chevy Chase, Maryland According to the data collected on Emmett, his family and colleagues, I estimate that Emmett returned to Marianna sometime around the middle of November. Likely he assisted Cephas with whatever current court business was at hand at Wilson and Wilson, but there isn’t much in […]

Chapter 104: Disillusionment

November 3, 1905The National HotelWashington, D.C. I’m in a hotel room, on the bed, my eyes closed. Odd sounds from outside in the hallway — busy city street noises outside — where am I? Oh yes. Washington. I think I slept the night before, but I can’t tell, because I […]

Chapter 103: Taking his chances

November 2, 1905The U.S. House of RepresentativesOffice of Congressman William Bailey LamarWashington, D.C. “Come on, Emmett,” Paul said, smiling at me, holding open the door to the House Chamber. I felt the hairs along my arms stand up as I walked through the door; I gaped. “Desks?” I said, turning […]

Chapter 99: New Film, New Questions

April 28, 2015Chevy Chase, Maryland Why would someone up and leave his home, family, business and professional contacts, and budding political network to relocate 1,500 miles away, where he’d be virtually starting over, all alone? And, why go from Florida to rural Illinois in January, for goodness sake? I’d been […]

Chapter 96: Mutually Beneficial

September 11, 2020Chevy Chase, MD I suppose Emmett could be considered lucky — in his life, he had at least three mentors looking out for him, shepherding him during his career, impressed by Emmett’s intelligence and potential. Emmett had a lot of potential, energy, charm, and those who know him […]

Chapter 95: No Waiting

April 30, 1905Cephas and Lula Wilson’s HouseMarianna, Florida7:25 pm I’m standing outside of Ceph’s house, in the front yard, looking up at the huge oak tree near the sidewalk. The tree has curtains of gray moss dangling, drifting with the soft wind. The sun’s set already, and it feels like […]