Coffee-spit-worthy Clip


I admit I spewed a bit of coffee this morning when I saw this new-to-me clip freshly found in the January 3, 1917 edition of The Pensacola Journal:

Check the fourth paragraph. Source:

“Mrs. Emmett Wilson?” GAH.

I turned immediately to all of my known and collected documents — and breathed a huge sigh of relief.

The “Mrs.” is a typo. Of course. I should know better — after all these years of researching Emmett, I’ve learned to take many of the articles written about him with a major grain of salt until I’ve done the background checking on the information. Editors interesting in pushing their agendas (I’m looking at you, Frank Mayes) said what they wanted about Emmett regardless of fitness for office, or the truth.

I should also know better than to read this stuff at 4 a.m. with only one cuppa under my belt.



What’s the first thing most folks would do in an emergency, if you had to let family members know that you were injured in an accident, or seriously ill?

You’d call them. And, more likely than not, you’d probably connect with them almost immediately.

Thanks to the miracle of modern telecommunication — we’re always accessible to other human beings at any time of the day or night. And it’s economical. I don’t give a second thought about the economics of calling my sister (who lives on the other side of the country) during the day: I just pick up the phone. But back in the 70s and 80s, I can remember having to wait until 5 or 6 pm to make a call to a friend who lived in the next county, because the rates would be lower.

(Aside: Here’s an interesting and informative article on the cultural shifts that telephones have brought over the past 100 years. The focus of the article is how the telephones have been depicted in film, but the historical background is well written.)

In Emmett’s day, and especially during his congressional service days (1913-1917) a telephone call (and in particular, a long distance call, as mentioned in the link above) was a big deal:

  • Telephones were still the accessories of the wealthy and upper-middle class by 1913.
  • Many communities, especially rural, were not completely (or consistently) wired for telephones.

Rural folks cutting telegraph and telephone lines for clothes lines. Priorities! Source: The Chipley Banner, February 18, 1899, p. 3 in

  • Long distance calls were expensive, and you didn’t telephone someone long distance without a reason. [Some businesses charged $5 for three minutes (in 1913 dollars), which is the equivalent of $60 in 2017.]

I started thinking about this yesterday when I came across my notes about this event:

Source: The Pensacola Journal, December 21, 1914, page 1, in

Here’s the background:

  • Emmett was admitted to Providence Hospital in Washington, D.C. at least a week earlier.
  • He was unconscious and his kidneys had shut down; he also went into delirium tremens, which was (and is today) sometimes fatal.
  • The condition was so serious, both Cephas Love Wilson and Frank C. Wilson Jr. were summoned to his bedside in Washington, D.C. This was neither an inexpensive nor easy trip for either of Emmett’s brothers.

My question is, were they contacted by telephone or telegram?

I am leaning toward telegram, because although Cephas had a telephone in both his home and office, and would have been accessible, the officials at Providence Hospital would probably not have known that — and, likely they would have used the tried-and-true telegram.

The cost associated with making the phone call from Washington to Marianna would also have been time consuming, and quite expensive. It was simply more efficient and economical to get the telegram to Cephas ASAP. 


Finally, take a look at the story that ran right below the article on Emmett’s brothers being summoned to Washington, D.C.:

Was the article on drinking an unfortunate placement or was the publisher sending a message? Source: The Pensacola Journal, December 21, 1914, page 1, in

At this point, Frank Mayes’ widow Lois Mayes was the publisher of The Pensacola Journal, and she was not a fan of Emmett’s. (The love-hate relationship between Frank Mayes and Emmett Wilson is an interesting story for another day.)

Lois, and the political movers-and-shakers of Pensacola, knew Emmett had a problem with alcohol. Most of Emmett’s colleagues and friends were now stepping away from him, tired of his behavior and wary of the professional fallout from associating with a known drunk.

Was the placement of this article on drinking an unfortunate coincidence or was it done on purpose?


Break Up


I like to check on my favorite databases every six or eight weeks, so as not to miss any updates. And — SCORE! — the excellent Chronicling America newspaper database (of the Library of Congress) had added several years of The Pensacola Journal since my last visit!

And what an interesting find!


Check out the “Letter to Santa Claus,” almost in the center of the paper. It was written 101 years ago today!


A breakup in progress! Or was it? Lots of little digs at Emmett in here, too.

The editors who wrote this snippy little piece had had it with Emmett by this point. If you recall from an earlier post, Emmett damn near died almost exactly one year ago — he was found unconscious in his room at the Congress Hall Hotel, where he lived right across the street from his office in the House Office Building (today known as Cannon House Office Building).

This was the nadir of Editor Frank Mayes‘ patience with Emmett — whom he had brought out of obscurity to national prominence as  a U.S. Congressman. All Emmett had to do was follow Mayes’ bidding in Washington, D.C.; follow the party’s directives without question, and Emmett would likely be given a nice, cushy job on the Florida State Supreme Court (which Mayes & Co. KNEW was Emmett’s lifelong goal).


Frank L. Mayes of The Pensacola Journal. Champion grudge holder. Poor judge of character too, I think.

What Mayes & Co. didn’t realize was that despite Emmett’s terrible addiction, he had a good heart, and integrity. Emmett was also a people-pleaser of sorts: The  outcry and negative publicity that good old Frank Mayes put out in his own paper, about his personally selected man to represent the party’s ideas in Washington, got to Emmett. He was already a full-blown alcoholic when he took the oath of office on March 4, 1913; Mayes knew that, too. He figured Emmett would spend a lot of his time soused, a little out of his mind, and he’d probably just do as he was told.

Mayes underestimated Emmett’s character, which makes me feel good (because I am not Team Frank), but it also points out the poignancy of someone trying to do what’s best, only to get tripped up by politics, and someone else’ plain old ambition. Emmett wanted to do a good job for his constituency. Mayes didn’t care; as long as his ambitions were satisfied.

Long story short: Emmett followed his heart/good sense with a postmaster appointment because it was the right thing to do, and it cost him his career.

Back to the breakup item: In April 1915, Emmett had already announced he wasn’t running for a third term. In the article about his decision to retire from Congress, he said that it was all his decision, but you can bet your sweet bippy (or the 1915 equivalent) that the Florida State Democratic Party forced it.

Whatta guy.

I Love You, George A. Smathers Libraries


Friends, today I made a random check of historic newspaper databases, and I found a set that has been recently added to the University of Florida George A. Smathers Library Archive.

This one:

The Daily News. Pensacola's -other- daily newspaper not published by Frank Mayes. Source: University of Florida Smathers Library

The Daily News. Pensacola’s -other- daily newspaper not published by Frank Mayes. Source: University of Florida Smathers Library

A totally new-to-me source that I haven’t seen either in microfilm or in hard copy to date. I knew this publication existed, but I figured known copies were non-existent! You have no idea how thrilling this is to find it!

There’s a few things that are important about this publication:

  • Frank Mayes was not the editor/publisher. Mayes ran The Pensacola Journal, the morning paper, which was considered the stronger of the two newspapers. Whatever Mayes thought was wonderful, the editor of The Daily News took a more objective, critical view of the issue.
  • The Daily News would eventually become the Pensacola Daily News, which would be run by Emmett’s college roommate (from Stetson University) and close friend, William Bloxham Crawford.
  • The limited editions of this paper fill in an information hole. The Smathers Archive only has the years 1899 through 1903 of this paper — but that’s fine. Emmett went to visit his grandfather and family members during this period (so, perhaps he is mentioned in the paper). More importantly, Emmett lived in Pensacola for six months from September 1901 to February 1902, when he was enrolled in shorthand courses at Meax’s Business College.
Source: The Chipley Banner, February 15, 1902

Source: The Chipley Banner, February 15, 1902

Emmett’s prominent Pensacola family —  he was the grandson of Augustus Emmett Maxwell, and the nephew of Judge Evelyn C. Maxwell — meant it was likely his activities would be mentioned somewhere in the paper.

Let’s hope for interesting and/or boring clips! Anything will be most welcome!



A Study of Notoriety

An example of the Tersely Told column, April 26, 1914. Source: The Pensacola Journal, in Chronicling

An example of the Tersely Told column, April 26, 1914. Source: The Pensacola Journal, in Chronicling

In the early 1900s, if you got your name in the newspaper, it was a big deal. It indicated prominence in your community. If you think about it, the community news blurb columns were a sort-of equivalent to our Facebook.

In Pensacola, these columns were mostly found in the Society section of the paper, with little headings over each news blurb; if you were a businessman or the items were often filed under a column titled, “Tersely Told.’ Mostly, these were about prominent individuals’ comings and goings, and what they were doing that day, much like what you see on Facebook, when friends post where they are at a certain moment, who they are with, what they are doing, and the like.

How it worked at The Pensacola Journal (morning paper) and The Pensacola News (evening paper) was that you (or your secretary) would call the item in to the editor’s desk. These columns often were filler, so there never was a guarantee that whatever you called in to include would get selected. But, if you were considered a hot property among the locals, you could be sure that your item would run in the paper.

F.C. Brent. Source:

F.C. Brent. Source:

Who were the key people of Pensacola in the early 1900s? If you were a member of the families Blount, Knowles, Brent, Avery, Maxwell, you would be certain of automatic coverage, at least in the society pages. No need to have to call up the society page editor to sell yourself for the treasured copy space.

But if you aspired to prominence, as did Emmett when he first moved to Pensacola in 1906, and were unknown, it was all about contacting the editors on your own; selling yourself, making yourself into prominence, using whatever connections you could to get your name in print.

Justice Evelyn Croom Maxwell. VIP in bar and bench circles. Source: State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory,

Justice Evelyn Croom Maxwell. VIP in bar and bench circles. Source: State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory,

In 1906, Emmett had already had two big start-overs in his life to overcome; the pressure was on him now to make good, not screw up royally. People who could make a difference for Emmett, such as Frank Mayes (the editor, publisher, and Democratic party kingmaker) were watching.

Oh, he didn’t have to try as hard as, say someone who was completely new to Pensacola; after all, Emmett was the grandson and nephew of two of the Maxwell family members. But he was still an unknown. Emmett would have to contact the papers, tell the editors what he was doing, and hope that information about his doings would be included in the news.

I wonder if Emmett felt uncomfortable doing this; that he felt this was akin to prostituting himself in some way, to selling his soul a little bit at a time?

In reviewing the statistics on Emmett’s press coverage in the Pensacola papers, there were less than 20 during the years 1906-07.

In 1908, Emmett’s name appeared more often in the society section of the paper; he was now attending important events, and his comings and goings were now being reported regularly. There were 42 society-news mentions in the papers; still, his name was spelled correctly only nine times during that period.

As Emmett’s popularity (and prominence) increased, his name was mentioned several times a week — and now, more often than not spelled correctly, especially leading up to and during his campaign years (1911- 1912). Rest assured, editor Frank Mayes had a lot to do with this — Mayes wanted a close association with President Woodrow Wilson, and he knew he could do this if he got Emmett into Wilson’s administration.

Frank L. Mayes of The Pensacola Journal. Champion grudge holder.

Frank L. Mayes of The Pensacola Journal. Champion grudge holder.

Emmett was elected by a landslide — an amazing thing in 1912, given the fact he had little political experience (every job he held that was public service was given to him via connections — he’d never run for office before), and his age. It was all Frank Mayes’ doing, everyone knew. Despite the fact that Emmett was a good public speaker, and a fairly good lawyer, he was unknown and new to the profession. If Emmett had been incompetent, Mayes wouldn’t have been able to cover that up so well.

Emmett was finally prominent. His family was proud of him; his friends knew how hard Emmett worked to get there — and, they knew how stressful it was on him, as he was drinking more than ever to cope. I wonder if this was related to the fact that he had to compromise his beliefs and political views to get what he wanted — that he was still selling himself, so to speak, to Mayes as well as the Democratic party officials?

In September 1914, when Emmett was in his second term as a U.S. Congressman, Emmett stood up for himself against Mayes — it was only once — and that would prove to be Emmett’s undoing. He failed to nominate a close associate and political friend of Frank Mayes to the coveted postmaster position in Pensacola. Mayes felt slighted by Emmett, and Mayes was the kind of guy who took slights personally.

The next day, a front-page article about Emmett and his disloyalty to his friends appeared, written by the postmaster runner-up Chipley Jones.

October 14, 1914. The Pensacola Journal. Source: Chronicling

October 14, 1914. The Pensacola Journal. Much of the letter Jones wrote for The Pensacola Journal appears to have been a collaboration with Mayes. It would not do for Mayes to blast Emmett in an editorial, since Mayes was the one who had to sell Emmett as a candidate to the Democratic state party in the first place. Source: Chronicling

Emmett had two more years left in his term, but Frank Mayes was done with him. In fact, Emmett’s name rarely appears in the paper anymore, except for articles that are negative about his service. He’s simply referred to as ‘the Congressman from the Third District.’ No name.

Mayes must have known the appearance of indifference would bother Emmett more than anything else. And it did. For the two years remaining of Emmett’s term in office, there’s less than 25 mentions of his name in The Pensacola Journal — and Emmett’s name isn’t always spelled correctly, just as when Emmett was fighting his way out of obscurity.

Circle of Friends, Part Two: Paul Hayne Carter

Friendship troika (top to bottom): Walter, Cephas, Paul.

Friendship troika (top to bottom): Walter, Cephas, Paul.

One thing that stands out to me in getting to know Emmett’s closest friends is that his inner circle was consistent and remained close to him all his life. Emmett’s true inner circle were: Walter Kehoe, Big Brother Cephas, Paul Carter.

Emmett wasn’t a snob. He seemed to make friends everywhere he went. But there’s a difference between true friends and acquaintances, and Emmett never confused the two. True friends stick around because the relationship is genuine. When the shit hit the fan for Emmett several times in his life, those three guys were always there for him.

If Emmett were ever uncertain about something, these were the three he’d consult. But whose opinion weighed the most to Emmett?

I think it was Paul’s. Here’s why I say this:

Dateline: June 1, 1905.

Paul Carter, a full-fledged attorney, is now working as a private secretary of Congressman William Bailey Lamar in Washington D.C. Emmett is the junior partner in his big brother’s law firm in Marianna, Florida. Kehoe has moved on to Pensacola, to expand his growing political career. Impatience and adventurelust strikes our hero: Emmett is tired of living in Cephas’ shadow, he’s tired of small-town life, he wants something different. His successful older brother, and his two best friends both seem to have a lot more going on than he did.

Nicholas Van Sant. Source:

Nicholas Van Sant. Source:

A friend from college days, Nicholas Van Sant, has stayed in touch with Emmett over the past year. Recently, Van Sant offered him an opportunity to go into practice with him as a full, equal partner. Business was thriving, he’d be busy, he’d meet new, influential people.

This seemed like just the ticket at the right moment: It sounded good, but the opportunity was about 1,500 miles away, in Illinois. He’d be a Democrat working for a Republican, in the North. He knew nobody, had no real contacts up there other than his old college friend. Still, it seemed a chance of a lifetime for Emmett.

What did Emmett do? He talked to his trusted friends.

Who would not want to bask in my hotness 24/7, anyway?

Who would not want to bask in my hotness 24/7, anyway?

He told his brother, Cephas, who probably said, “It sounds OK, but, gee, look at all you are giving up here: Free room and board at my house. The cache of working with me, Cephas Love Wilson. This is comfortable for you. Why give up something comfortable for something unknown?”

He told his friend, Walter Kehoe, who probably said, “Affiliation with the Van Sants, even though they are a powerful and important Republican political family, may be challenging for you, a lone Democratic Southerner, far away from home, with no other contacts. There are benefits, but you would be far away from friends and family. Won’t you be lonely?”

Still undecided, Emmett went to visit Van Sant in Illinois to discuss it in person. After that visit, Emmett may have felt better about making the change…but he was still on the fence. So, on his way home to Florida, Emmett took a significant detour to Washington, D.C., to visit Paul, and to talk about this opportunity. This speaks volumes about how Emmett valued Paul’s opinion. I think it was this conversation that pushed Emmett off the fence, and to Illinois.

I think Paul told Emmett that it didn’t really matter that Van Sant was a Republican per se, as this was an opportunity to do something completely different than he’d ever have the chance to do in Florida. If he stayed in Florida, working for Cephas, he could expect more of the same for years, probably. That’s not such a bad thing, but Paul knew his friend wanted to try his wings, and that Emmett probably would never learn to stand on his own professional merits unless he got away on his own. Moving to Illinois, starting fresh, even though it would be hard at times, was one way to say to the world, “I’m Emmett Wilson, not Cephas Wilson’s little brother.”

Paul probably said to Emmett, “What would you stand to lose if you did try this? You aren’t leaving anyone or any big opportunity behind. If nothing else, you’ll gain valuable experience working with the Van Sants, and you’ll know you can stand on your own.”

Illinois in January! It would be a whole new adventure!

Working with Van Sant in Illinois in January! It would be a whole new adventure!

Also, “Look at this like an adventure. If it doesn’t work out, you can always start over. You’ve done it before, you can do it again.”

That’s just what happened.

Emmett moved to Sterling, Illinois; it lasted six months. He moved back home to Florida, and indeed, started over — this time, in Pensacola —  more experienced, wiser. I don’t think Emmett had regrets, but it made him realize a few things: He had it good in Florida with his friends, even though it seemed dull at times. And, in the political/legal business, it is all about connections and relationships, two things he really didn’t have in Sterling.

Would Emmett have done this if Cephas or Walter advised against it? I’m not sure.

But: I believe that if Paul had said the move was a bad idea, Emmett would not have done it.

I mentioned earlier that I believe Emmett absolutely trusted Paul’s opinion. Here’s one more example why Paul and Emmett’s friendship is so critical in telling Emmett’s story.

Dateline: August 1, 1910, Panama City

At this point in Emmett’s life, he was still unmarried, unattached, and was being groomed for a more significant political career. His friends (who now included Frank Mayes, editor of the Pensacola Journal and head of the local Democratic Committee) believed that if Emmett were able to ‘settle down,’ i.e., get married, stop hanging out at his club so much, cut back on the drinking and carousing, he’d be considered more seriously for office. He had a good political career ahead of him. His public image, though, was being questioned by the party dads. He didn’t send a ‘mature enough’ impression for political office consideration.

Emmett’s friends, who also had political ambitions tied to Emmett’s rising star, believed they needed to be proactive to force this change on Emmett. A few friends (Kehoe, Cephas) thought this was a great idea, and set about doing some matchmaking. One of the people they called in to help was Paul Carter, who was now the third-term Mayor of Marianna. (Note: Paul would be elected in 1912 for a fourth term; he and Mary Horne, a longtime friend and childhood sweetheart from Chipley, would be wed September 5, 1912.)

Mayor Paul Carter of Marianna, Florida. Source: The Pensacola Journal, 1912.

Mayor Paul Carter of Marianna, Florida. Source: The Pensacola Journal, 1912.

Operation Matchmaker was activated by Walter Kehoe and his wife during the first week of August, 1910. They ‘found’ a suitable girl from Georgia, who was (according to her descendants) uptight, tense, did not dance, did not play cards, did not drink, but played piano beautifully. The Kehoes introduced Emmett to this girl while hosting friends in Panama City over a two week period. Paul Carter was invited to visit during this matchmaking weekend, as were several of Emmett’s family members.

Everyone was there to vet this young woman for Emmett. She was from a good family; she impressed everyone she met. The Kehoes thought she was a good match for Emmett, because she was a strong, tough character, who (apparently) did not tolerate ‘loose’ behavior of any kind. She certainly had a strong enough character to ‘change’ Emmett, since (it seemed) Emmett was not going to change himself.

I can imagine Emmett talking to Paul about her and the fact he and the woman were being pushed towards each other.

I can imagine Emmett saying to Paul, “She’s nice, but I don’t know her. I’d never see her on a regular basis.” And, “I know they (the Kehoes) are just trying to help, but this woman would try to change me into someone I’m not.”

It is likely that Paul weighed in against the matchmaking. I can imagine Paul saying, “Do you want to take a chance that you’ll get to know her, maybe fall in love with her, after you get married? What if you don’t? If she loved you, she’d take you as you were. If you truly wanted to change, she’d leave that up to you, if that was what you wanted.”

I can also see Paul saying something like:

“Gee, Emmett, it is like they are picking out the person for you to have sex with for the rest of your life. Can’t you do that for yourself?”

I believe that if Paul had suggested that if Emmett really liked her, and there was ‘something’ there between them, Emmett should at least spend time with her on a regular basis (she lived 250 miles away, which was a 10-hour trip one way back in 1910), and get to know her. It would have been tough: It wasn’t just the distance, but this young woman was only allowed to ‘date’ on the front porch of her house in Columbus, Georgia, with her tyrannical father in hearing range of the courting couple. This matchmaking episode pretty much died on the vine, but I do think if there had been sparks, Paul would have encouraged it; and Emmett would probably have followed through with it.


Paul was the kind of friend who helped Emmett stay true to himself, when people were trying to micromanage Emmett’s life to their own political/professional benefit. He was just there for Emmett, whether Emmett needed him or not.

Emmett was lucky he had Paul in his life.



In the past week, I’ve come across what I consider the turning point, the downward slide, in Emmett’s career and life.

It’s October, 1914. Up until this point, Emmett was the Golden Boy of West Florida, he was getting appropriations for his constituency, he was serving on important committees, he was making speeches in Congress. He was, for all practical purposes, making good.

Then, things changed quickly, almost overnight, and it is as if everything he touched or did turned sour.

Congressional appropriations for Pensacola ‘fell through’ without explanation; messages were either getting misdirected or not delivered at all, giving folks the impression that Emmett was not on the job.

Frank L. Mayes of The Pensacola Journal

Frank L. Mayes of The Pensacola Journal

Also, Emmett appeared to have turned his back on one of his biggest supporters based on a unsubstantiated rumor, and locals were calling into question his official decisions, which looked incompetent and ill-informed.

As a result, Emmett’s chief supporter, Frank Mayes, the publisher of The Pensacola Journal,  completely turned his back on Emmett, essentially branding him persona non grata. Indeed, the editorial commentary in October was unrelenting in its scathing and dismissive comments about Emmett, where once there was nothing but support. When reading the papers in consecutive order, one gets a strong sense that Mayes feels ‘let down.’ The Pensacola Golden Boy image was gone.

In many instances, Emmett’s name was not even mentioned in subsequent articles; it was as if Mayes decided Emmett’s name wasn’t even worth the type space in his publication.

Mayes thinks Emmett didn't care enough about this project.  Source: The Pensacola Journal, Oct 1914.

Mayes thinks Emmett didn’t care enough about this project. Source: The Pensacola Journal, Oct 1914.

I’ve seen it written that the opposite of love is not hate, but indifference; and in October 1914, Mayes was now entirely indifferent toward Emmett. Mayes was now looking to Tom West and John P. Stokes, Emmett’s primary opposition in the 1914 primary election, as Emmett’s potential replacements for 1916 — and Emmett still had the general election coming up in November (Emmett was unopposed in the 1914 general election)!

You see, back in 1912, Mayes basically took Emmett out of obscurity and made him a congressman; all Emmett had to do was prove his opponents wrong. Emmett’s opponents said he was too young, had no real legislative experience, had never run for any election at all, and (privately) that he seemed to have a drinking problem.

In the months leading up to Emmett’s candidacy, Mayes knew the challenges Emmett was facing, including the drinking. In 1912, there was a lampoon article in The Pensacola Journal teasing Emmett about the time he spent at his club; so, the fact that Emmett drank was not news to Mayes, or anyone else. Everyone drank. Emmett was likely good at hiding the amount of his alcohol consumption.

Mayes saw something in Emmett that made it worth taking a chance to back him politically. The facts that Emmett was young, and without significant experience in big-time politics were also known to Mayes. However, he believed that the only way to get experience was to actually do the work, and so, he backed Emmett. All Emmett had to do was promise to do his best, and I believe he did. Mayes promoted Emmett every chance he got in his newspaper, and it paid off — temporarily.

In the end, it came down to the fact that Emmett could not stay away from drinking, because this is what did him in. I don’t think Mayes realized what a problem Emmett had, either, and it took him for surprise too. And Mayes always felt like he had an accurate read on people, especially his friends. I think Emmett’s drinking problem caught him unawares; Mayes did not like to be shamed or proven wrong in public, especially after putting his reputation on the line with Emmett. Mayes had a great reputation for always backing the winners. This time with Emmett, however, he goofed.

Curiously, there was a chance for Emmett to turn all of this around, to take a stand, to make amends, but he didn’t. This is also noted in the contemporary media. The November 16, 1914 edition of the Lakeland Telegram read, “The papers are speaking out so plainly that the congressman ought in self defense to say something in reply.”

Many were curious why Emmett didn’t take a stand for himself. He worked very hard to get to Congress, and to convince his constituents he was up to the responsibility.

Yet, Emmett’s lack of response speaks volumes. It was almost as if he was acknowledging he had a problem, and was overwhelmed, and yet, it was unmanly and unseemly to say those words out loud. So, his choices were to either say something and receive public disparagement, or to say nothing and still, receive public disparagement.

Also, Emmett felt the cut-off relationship with Mayes deeply. The two had been close up to October 1914. Emmett trusted Mayes; he relied on Mayes. Thing was, though, this was a political friendship based on patronage and favors, Emmett may have lost sight of that. Once he became useless to Mayes, that was the end of the relationship. Sad, but true.

I imagine Emmett’s friends were telling him to get help, immediately, and to say something, anything publicly to cover himself. He owed his constituency at least that much. I can imagine Frank Mayes’ (and his friend’s) frustration with him, too, when nothing was forthcoming.

Eventually, it came out that Emmett was drinking, every day, and it was out of control. As the drinking spun out of control, so did his life. Unfortunately, October, 1914, is just the start of that downward spin cycle.

More to come.