Friday, April 18, 2014

Passion of the Pearl: Letter P

Souce: namu project
The Letter P
Could it be perfume, pink, pandering, pancakes ...?
Strong to my traditional form, the letter P is for:

Pearl harbored serious obsession here.
This Pearl is Great-Aunt Pearl, whom I knew only by reputation and photos. Grandmother Amy was the oldest of three sisters with the middle sister Grace and youngest sister Pearl

In 1911, Pearl was in high school, with all the expectations of any young woman in the early 1900s, which were basically marriage, children, and home.

But, OH, first came the tender innocent love, romance with its soft touches, shy kisses, sweet words...

In her English textbook, Pearl practiced writing her name, over and over.  Other pages were covered with doodles and sketches, dreamy sketches of young men.  
Even her perception of Hell expressed a passionate moment in her life.

This textbook must have been all over the classroom, passed from girl to girl.  Squelched giggles and hurried scribbles asked and answered questions.  Comments and questions (what did he say about me?...Certainly I know that YOU know!..Girls are made to flirt with men---But men with girls??  Oh! No!...) ***

 Pearl's dreams of romance were recorded for a great-niece to find:

The drawings and notes were found in History of English Literature by Reuben Post Halleck, M.A  (Yale), published by the American Book Company in 1900.

Pearl married shortly after graduation, at the age of eighteen or so.  The man she married was named Fred, who was rather plain and balding early, liked to fish, and was not greatly ambitious.  He was the very antithesis of the ideal heroic man of her dreams. 

On March 6, 1913, in a double wedding, Pearl married Fred Funk AND
her sister Grace married John Friend.

Whenever I asked my grandmother about her sister Pearl, she would sigh and say, "Oh, Pearl..."
I was an over-achiever.  I never did any of this.  Seriously.

Imagine what Pearl and her friends could have done with Smart Phones.

***Copied from the text book, written in pencil.

Now, what did YOU do during a high school class?  Be honest, now!


  1. I can't reveal my doodles...
    Actually, I was probably doodling D&D creatures, not girls.
    That's cool you still have that old book of hers.

  2. Wow, it's neat that you have her writings and drawings.

  3. I remember daydreaming in Freshman English...last class of the day. There was a girl who always skipped that class and you could see her getting on a motorcycle w/her boyfriend and leaving the school. I remember thinking how awesome that was, that she had such reckless abandon. I now know that I was dead wrong, but at the time that life of rebellion seemed dreamy. ;)

    That's awesome that you have your great aunt's high school book!

  4. I was a very good girl, and beyond that, I am not telling.

    That is surprising that Pearl made it to high school. In those times it was not always thought necessary to send a girl to school beyond grammar school.

  5. I can't draw one bit, so I just filled in all the o's and such, I can stay in the lines at least lol

  6. What a treasure to have that notebook! As for me and high school... being honest... I was a pretty diligent student who didn't get into trouble and paid attention in class. But I really didn't like school and I was a loner.

  7. The mustachioed man on the right looks like Edgar Allen Poe!!

  8. Sadly I mostly just paid attention and took notes...I was socially backward then as now.

  9. What an incredible treasure that book is. Something to cherish, to read, to reread.
    I read in my high school classes. Usually not a book the class related to.

  10. I drew whatever came to mind. I barely ever paid attention

  11. Hi human, Susan,

    Such a wondrous memory that you have. A textbook of the way it was and probably quite the same these days. My human has high school annuals full of written notes from all his starstruck fellow students. Well, that's what he tells me.

    Please have a good long Easter weekend.

    Pawstive wishes,

    Penny the cordial host of the Alphabark Challenge! :)

  12. A sweet book. Something to pass down to your granddaughters. I couldn't draw but just doodled with circles and squares.

  13. I daydreamed a lot when I should have been paying attention and getting better grades, but I knew I wasn't going to fall behind. Your Great Aunt Pearl was quite the artist, her drawings are good.

    1. Apparently, Pearl did move on with art. I have one of her water colors and it is quite good. I wonder what happened to the others?


Go won' t hurt...I'd love to hear what you think!