Above, Plinky Toepperwein uses a mirror to shoot at a target held in husband Adolph’s hand. Otto M. Jones, Library of Congress
Begin with Chapter One ~ Return to Chapter Forty-One
Hedda Burgemeister, January 1913
Tap, tap, tap.
Hedda forces herself to abandon a most pleasant dream. A dream in which the tap-tap-tapping does not belong. She does not move. Listening.
Not a sound. Why is she now wide awake? She rolls to her other side to attempt to submerge herself back into that dream.
Tap, tap, tap. Again. Perhaps at the glass in the front door?
The room is pitch black. The cuckoo Otto gave her calls out a half-hour, providing no clue as to the actual hour of the night.
Tap, rap, rap. Bolder, more insistent this time.
Terrified, she reaches for her robe and tiptoes toward the front door. She turns back to the kitchen, arming herself with the iron skillet from the cookstove.
Continue reading “An Ostrich-Plumed Hat: Chapter Forty-Two”
Above, 1912 Cuero Turkey Trot, Francisco A. Chapa Family papers, UTSA Libraries Special Collections, The Top Shelf
Begin with Chapter One ~ Return to Chapter Thirty-Eight
Andrew Stevens, November 1912
“‘Personal antagonism,’” sputters John. “Bryan Callaghan must be rolling over in his grave. His reasons for renaming the park Waterworks were not petty.”
“Alderman Mauermann stuck to his ground, though,” adds the Colonel. “George Brackenridge’s gift to the city had more strings attached to it than a spider’s web. What good is a park with no way to access it?”
Mr. K’s grumpiness that this topic resurfaced at City Hall is obvious. “As big a proponent of parks as Alderman Lambert is, he sees the gift for what it was—a scheme to line George Brackenridge’s pockets. The city was hamstrung. Forced to buy property on River Avenue from him for an entrance to the parkland.”
John waves a hand dismissively. “A technicality. That’s a mere technicality according to Alderman Boynton. Says it’s poor grace to censure a benevolent donor simply because the city failed to notice the hitch at the time the gift of land was accepted.”
Continue reading “An Ostrich-Plumed Hat: Chapter Thirty-Nine”
“We are against his politics, but we like his grit.” W.A. Rogers for New York Herald, Cabinet of American Illustration, Library of Congress
Begin with Chapter One ~ Return to Chapter Thirty-Six
Andrew Stevens, October 1912
John trumpets, “Teddy Roosevelt’s as crazy as a bull moose in spring, that’s what he is.”
“His secretary tackled the shooter before he could get off a second shot,” says Mr. K before turning toward Andy. “No offense meant concerning your qualifications for this position, Andy, but it seems having a former football player for your secretary is not a bad investment. You could benefit from training with the Turnverein.”
“That crowd in Milwaukee,” adds the Colonel, “would have lynched that insane Bavarian on the spot if Roosevelt hadn’t assured them he was fine.”
John shakes his head in wonder. “A hole right through in his overcoat. His shirt soaked in blood. Yet the former President insisted, ‘I will give this speech or die.’ And he almost did. Talked for fifty minutes before his doctor dragged him off the stage.”
Continue reading “An Ostrich-Plumed Hat: Chapter Thirty-Seven”