In going through a box of old letters, I found a packet of some written to relatives in a Washington, D.C., suburb when our family lived in Orangeburg from 1931 to 1936.
One letter, written by my mother from 21 Orange Court on 17 June 1932, describes a gathering on my 11th birthday:
"How I wish you could all have been here at the celebration at night. There was such a happy crowd of little faces all around the table. I am so fond of little Jane Crum. She is an out and out tomboy but so sincere and full of fun.
“One night not long ago she came down to play and the children all came in the kitchen where I was ironing. We started talking about snow and Jane was so eager to know what sledding was like. She said she wished she could try it out some time as she knew it must be lots of fun. She was so interested in everything we told her. If we ever come back to Woodside, I am going to invite Jane to spend some time with us in the winter if her mother will let her. I know she would have the time of her life."
Despite the adversities of the Depression years which followed, our family always had happy memories of Orangeburg.
Our older brother, Charles J. Benedict Jr., became a speaker for the Los Angeles Rams and executive editor of Peterson's Pro-Football Annual; my middle brother, John, became editor of The Suburban Record in Silver Spring, Maryland; my sister, Ruth Mary, edited her church bulletin in Monterey, California; and I was secretary to the editor of The Evening Star in Washington. The youngest brother, Henry (Beany), was a high school choral director, a church organist, and choir director in the Washington area, and composed music.
All of us treasured the school years we had in Orangeburg, which compared favorably with the progressive education that had been established in Maryland.
Margaret B. MacNeill
(Mrs. John H. MacNeill)
Indialantic, Florida (since 1950)
World gets facts about Pearson honor
On behalf of Skipp Pearson and the dedicated team of volunteers who manage the Skipp Pearson Jazz Foundation, I would like to offer our sincere appreciation to Staff Writer Dionne Gleaton and The Times and Democrat for the wonderful reporting of the Order of the Palmetto Weekend for Pops.
In this present world where the media/press seem to be daily subjected to attacks, it is wonderful to know that strong partnership still exists between the Fourth Estate and the not-for-profit sector to bring facts and the truth to the attention of the public.
We are so happy to know that in the real world where your publication lives, there are no “alternative facts.” Because you cared, the world now knows that Skipp Pearson, the official ambassador for jazz music, has received the highest honor the State of South Carolina gives.
We can never thank you enough for what you have done to inform the public and to help archive an event of true importance.
Executive Director (volunteer)
Skipp Pearson Jazz Foundation
Post Office Box 835
Columbia, SC 29202