Dear Miss Minnie
By sunfeathers and more on December 28, 2012
Remember the part of my being an early bird? Sat down last night after supper & shower to transcribe another letter (this one was written by Miss Effie) from the postmarked envelope of October 6. I made it through two pages before my eyes started drooping. The old onion skin paper is hard enough to focus on so I had to wave the white flag and go to bed.
This morning, I arose full of energy and purpose. Going downstairs, turned on the laptop and got the coffee going so that I could sit down and finish that letter. Somewhere along during the third or fourth page, I saw a reference to a "STYDE" joining the first Baptist Church and who was going to be "baptised". Miss Effie went on to say that no one would be there to see it except the "officers of the church and the largest men in the church". She went on to write that folks had hoped he would be "baptised" the previous Sunday because "people wanted to see him".
My imagination was intrigued and my mind took off down the path of possibilities. The most obvious explanation was that he was a prisoner and had done something so heinous that people wanted to gawk. I believe I got it on the first try. Googling the word STYDE Anderson County SC prison, I found an article in the Newberry Observer from 1911, referencing a Samuel Hyde. I need to get back home and take the magnifying glass to the letter to see if what I took for STYDE is really S.HYDE. The dates are bang on for this to be a coincedence. An excerpt from a September 22, 1911, article stated that "he professed conversion and will be baptized". If I can corroberate this article with the person that Miss Effie was talking about in the letter, it will explain why people wanted to stare at him as the article described a heinous act.
I am having more fun with this endeavor that I would have ever thought possible. My goal is too bring the rest of the letters up and put them in chronological letter so that I can get moving on the transcriptions. A dedicated space is now available at the Manor that will be my place to work.
I can't wait!!!
sunfeathers "life is full of possibilities"
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