January 23, 2013

"L'ADDIE," MISS PRINDLE & FLORENCE CONNER

This tale starts out innocuously enough with a book called L'addie by a writer named Evelyn Whitaker. Not that it's pertinent to the story but this title and her many others were published anonymously while she was alive. Though I haven't read it and most likely wont it's apparently about gender differences in the care of aging parents.

I found it in a thrift store crate full of books and it piqued my curiosity merely due to its age. When you dig through dozens of piles per week you are bound to find ephemera, money or something interesting. My way of thinking is that if it's common to find things in books then it stands to reason that you'll find older "things" in older books. A theory which hasn't procured many vintage treasures but enough to keep me searching.

I've found a $20 bill, a wad of $2 dollar bills, various singles and as is evidenced by this blog, a few cool remnants from the past. To me, a letter or a gift inscription from the early to mid 1900s with a name attached to it is as exciting as finding a few bucks. Being that I am a Redford Cemetery "researcher" of sorts and the name Prindle is prominent -- there are at least 49 family members interred there -- in said boneyard I couldn't pass it up.


In this case it hasn't bore much historical fruit though I've tracked down a few leads. The fact that Florence Conner (I hope it's Conner and not Cormer; the "om" pattern follows a similar one used in the word "from" directly above her name.) addresses Miss Prindle formally suggests that she is younger than the woman or she is/was perhaps a student or underling of hers.

Seeing as the only clue to Miss Prindle's identity is that she was apparently still single and lived past 1903 it precludes most of the Redford Cemetery Prindle clan, many of whom died prior to 1900. The only feasible candidates from there are Charlotte M. Prindle (b. 1877 d. 1961) and Louise M. Prindle (b. 1885 d. 1943). Though both went on to get married and become mothers their age ranges make it possible but unless they retained their maiden names it seems highly unlikely.

As for Florence Conner I've found the photograph below from the August 18, 1905 Detroit Free Press.


Her Detroit connection is Mrs. William Joseph Keenan. If she is the Florence Conner I've yet to confirm it but her "large circle of acquaintances" gives the notion some credence.

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