04 August, 2011

The Telegraph-Herald

I've been reading a lot of old clippings lately, and this one from from the (Dubuque) Telegraph-Herald in August of 1922 made me smile:

"For the first time in nine years, Villa Turiucm, the country home of Mrs. Edith Rockefeller McCormick will be thrown open to society on Sept. 1.

The villa had been closed to society ever since the hasty and unexpected departure of Mrs. McCormick for Europe nine years ago to engage in the study of psycho-analysis. Her departure at that time automatically cancelled more than 3,000 (??) invitations to a reception that was to have been one of Chicago's most brilliant social affairs.


The occasion the the opening of Villa Turicum, as announced today by Mrs. McCormick, will be a bridge party for the benefit of the Girl Scouts.

Speculation as to whether or not Mrs. McCormick is seeking to re-establish her social leadership in Chicago was rife in society circles today."

Jeepers, three thousand. Really? I think that perhaps our excited society columnist is referring to the event for 200 that yes, Edith unexpectedly cancelled without explanation. Of course we''ll never know the true reason for that, because Edith was quite adept in utilizing Disraili's "Never complain and never explain."

This once again illustrates to me the power of how simply just one exaggeration or error can cement itself into everyday consciousness and recollection; thus becoming what many believe to be truth or fact. (Don't even get me started on the infamous scarlet fever story, which did not occur!)

I've noticed quite a few of these slight inaccuracies or flow blown exaggerations as I re-read the clippings. I shall keep you posted with the more interesting of the lot.

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