Volume IV, No. 1, Fall 1976
Some things happen so quickly I'm caught off guard, as was the case recently when two of Bittersweet's elderly friends died--Charlie Grace on April 15, 1976 and Mary Moore on July 18, 1976.
Charlie's and Mary's personality stories were featured in our Winter 1975 issue. Now many more people will be given the opportunity to know our friends as we knew them because their personalities will appear in a new Doubleday and Company book, going on sale in November. The book, entitled I Wish I Could Give My Son a Wild Raccoon, is a comprizal of interviews of people across the United States by students of magazines similar to Bittersweet. It was edited by members of Foxfire, all proceeds from this book going to the Smithsonian Institute's Reading Is Fundamental program.
During this last summer a few other items took me by surprize. A few I had anticipated but hadn't expected quite so soon. For one, Jim Conner will not be with us his senior year due to the fact he will attend a Baptist college to major in piano. Good luck, Jim.
Before school ended last year we chose our new members and the people who would take over as editors. This was so these members could get to know more about Bittersweet, and the new editors could find out more about their responsibilities. I took over as an editor this summer.
As story editor I suddenly found myself in a position of high authority and responsibility. I found people came to me for help I often couldn't give, and I found I had to speak to you through this column. So, when it came time to choose a logo for my column, I wanted to use something unique about my personality. Two things seemed perfect.
From the time I was very young I have desired to be a well-known author. I'm not there yet, but the writer within me is very prominant. I am also a lover of mice, especially my pets Michael and Gabriel. I just couldn't leave out the mice in my life. So, through Emery's artwork, you have before you a fitting portrait of the new editor. The pen, tail, ears and smiling "hullo"--that's all me.
As new editors it's true many of us don't know as much about our jobs as our predecessors did, but nothing is to keep us from learning. I look forward to a year of experiences that will help us all to grow individually as well as teach us to work together for our goals.
While concentrating on preparing the fall issue, the summer staff has an even greater chance for learning. Beverly Barber joined us this summer and it was a wonderful experience for me to watch her learn the jobs we've already learned. The enthusiasm she added made every day worth coming to work.
One reason I look forward to the beginning of school this fall is that I know many of the rest of our new members will have that same type of excitement in our new two-hour, two-credit class. We'll have twice as much time for the interviews, darkroom work and writing. But we'll also have to do twice as much work.
But the time will be well spent because Bittersweet really teaches us. As a class it isn't perfect. It has its faults. But it's more effective, I believe, than most textbook English courses which involve only cut and dry material. Bittersweet leaves room for expansion, and that is one thing I like. I am pleased to be the editor and watch us learn--for learning is inevitable.
Autumn brings other welcome changes. I have come to love its cool afternoons and beauty, and I call it my most cherished season.
A leaf floating down a small crystal stream Leads me to ask, "Can this be a dream?" Orange and yellow and bright burning red--The breathtaking beauty of trees overhead.
The air so cool, a chilly delight--
I'm happy and joyous from morning till
My heart sings praises, a glorious song-.
The Autumn is here! I've waited so long.
Thy beauty, my Lord, too great to be told--
Thy riches and splendor, how great to
I thank Thee for Thy love in this way--
And ask to never forget this, Thy day.
So until next time--the Lord be
willing--grace, peace and love.
THE EDITOR'S MAILBOX
Dear Mrs. Massey:
The weekend was spent in Camdenton with old friends Gene and Margaret
Bradley, former residents of Lebanon. She was telling me about BITTERSWEET magazine, which, obviously, is not on the newsstands around here in northeast Missouri since I had never heard of it.
After never having heard of this magazine until ten days ago, this week brings our copy of the AAA magazine, THE MIDWEST MOTORIST, with, what else but an article on your project!
Let me congratulate you on this worthwhile and rewarding project. It sounds marvelous and such a fine way for instilling into our too-much, too-soon young people how the mountain people lived and still live in some remote areas.
Here's a big Hurrah for you and your ambitious students.
Mrs. J. Andy Zenge,
Dear BITTERSWEET Staff:
After receiving the last issue of BITTERSWEET for this season, I have to say that the article I
found most interesting was the series on rural high schools in the spring issue. I always enjoy any
article you have on schools.
One thing worries me--with your becoming a corporation and all, I'm fearful that you may lose some of your "personal touch" that makes you so unique. But then again, with a magazine like BITTERSWEET, which is made up wholely of people, that would be hard to do. BITTERSWEET will always thrive as long as there are people who care.
Of course, I'm renewing my subscription.
Deadwood, South Dakota
I am a great fan of FOXFIRE and was very pleased to learn of your magazine in the ST. LOUIS
POST DISPATCH. I was all the more pleased since I had a week or two earlier been talking
about the ideas behind FOXFIRE and wondering if such a thing were being done with the folklore
and knowledge from other areas of the country, and particularly the Ozarks, as that is my place of
Keep it going folks. The old-timers can teach us so very much.
Mary A. Senter,
I received your copy and have read it from cover to cover and enjoyed it so very much. It reminds
me of my childhood days. Thank you for the copy.
I wasn't raised in the Ozarks, but washed on a board, rode in a buggy drawn by a horse, used coal oil lamps, wood stoves and didn't know what electricity was until I was 14 years old. I went to a one room schoolhouse and believe I did as good as children do today. We were poor people, but God watched over us and we were happy.
Thanks again and keep up your wonderful work. I am looking forward to receiving your magazine. May God bless each and every one of you.
Mrs. Frances Carter,
We would like to thank the following people for their donations:
Virginia R. Crocker, Storm Lake, Iowa
Donald M. Lance, Columbia, Missouri
Charles H. Baldwin, Columbia, Missouri
Mrs. George Bassore, Lebanon, Missouri
Betsy Jane Maier, St. Louis, Missouri
Jim O'Quinn, Lebanon, Missouri
Almon Atkins, Springfield, Missouri
Francis Balcom, Anaheim, California
Frances E. Coe, Chilhowee, Missouri
Miriam Gray, Nevada, Missouri
Eldon Kissell, Springfield, Ohio
Joseph M. Jakupcak, Oak Park, Illinois
Copyright © 1981 BITTERSWEET, INC.