By Ted Gup

ISBN-10: 1101444630

ISBN-13: 9781101444634

An inspiring account of the United States at its worst-and american citizens at their best-woven from the tales of Depression-era households who have been helped by means of presents from the author's beneficiant and secretive grandfather.

presently prior to Christmas 1933 in Depression-scarred Canton, Ohio, a small newspaper advert provided $10, no strings connected, to seventy five households in misery. readers have been requested to post letters describing their hardships to a benefactor calling himself Mr. B. Virdot. The author's grandfather Sam Stone used to be encouraged to put this advert and help his fellow Cantonians as they ready for the most harsh Christmas such a lot of them could ever witness.

Moved by way of the stories of pain and expressions of wish inside the letters, which he found in a suitcase seventy five years later, Ted Gup at the beginning got down to unveil the lives in the back of them, trying to find documents and family everywhere in the state who may well aid him flesh out the relations sagas hinted at in these letters. From those assets, Gup has re-created the effect that Mr B. Virdot's present had on every one relatives. many folks yearned for bread, coal, or different must haves, yet many others got funds from B. Virdot for extra fanciful items-a toy horse, say, or a suite of encyclopedias. As Gup's investigations published, a majority of these issues had the ability to show people's lives round- even to avoid wasting them.

yet as he exposed the agony and triumphs of dozens of strangers, Gup additionally discovered that Sam Stone was once way more advanced than the cute- retiree personality he'd consistently proven his grandson. Gup finds deeply buried information about Sam's life-from his impoverished, abusive upbringing to felonious efforts to conceal his immigrant origins from U.S. officials-that aid clarify why he felt this kind of powerful affinity to strangers in want. Drawing on his detailed locate and his award-winning reportorial presents, Ted Gup solves a unique kinfolk secret even whereas he pulls away the veil of 8 many years that separate us from the hardships that united the United States throughout the melancholy. In A mystery Gift, he weaves those revelations seamlessly right into a tapestry of Depression-era the US, so that it will fascinate and encourage in equivalent degree.

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An inspiring account of the United States at its worst-and americans at their best-woven from the tales of Depression-era households who have been helped through presents from the author's beneficiant and secretive grandfather.

almost immediately prior to Christmas 1933 in Depression-scarred Canton, Ohio, a small newspaper advert provided $10, no strings connected, to seventy five households in misery. readers have been requested to put up letters describing their hardships to a benefactor calling himself Mr. B. Virdot. The author's grandfather Sam Stone was once encouraged to put this advert and support his fellow Cantonians as they ready for the harshest Christmas such a lot of them may ever witness.

Moved by means of the stories of agony and expressions of desire inside the letters, which he stumbled on in a suitcase seventy five years later, Ted Gup at the start got down to unveil the lives in the back of them, looking for documents and family all around the state who may support him flesh out the family members sagas hinted at in these letters. From those assets, Gup has re-created the effect that Mr B. Virdot's reward had on each one kin. many folks yearned for bread, coal, or different must haves, yet many others bought cash from B. Virdot for extra fanciful items-a toy horse, say, or a collection of encyclopedias. As Gup's investigations printed, some of these issues had the facility to show people's lives round- even to avoid wasting them.

yet as he exposed the agony and triumphs of dozens of strangers, Gup additionally realized that Sam Stone was once way more advanced than the cute- retiree personality he'd constantly proven his grandson. Gup reveals deeply buried information about Sam's life-from his impoverished, abusive upbringing to felonious efforts to conceal his immigrant origins from U. S. officials-that support clarify why he felt the sort of robust affinity to strangers in want. Drawing on his distinctive locate and his award-winning reportorial presents, Ted Gup solves a novel relations secret even whereas he pulls away the veil of 8 many years that separate us from the hardships that united the USA in the course of the melancholy. In A mystery reward, he weaves those revelations seamlessly right into a tapestry of Depression-era the US, in order to fascinate and encourage in equivalent degree.

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Extra resources for A Secret Gift: How One Man's Kindness--and a Trove of Letters--Revealed the Hidden History of the Great Depression

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But after two years, young Fairbanks evidently decided that he had learned all he needed from the experience. He was always impatient, and he felt that it was time to move from the second-­highest rung on the ladder to the highest. He was still a teenager, but he saw no need to wait until he reached the grand old age of twenty to begin his climb. He wanted to make it to the top. It was time for Douglas Fairbanks to take a crack at Broadway. indd 28 03/08/2015 09:54:55 2 The Heroine’s Likable Younger Brother T he theatrical universe that the teenage Douglas Fairbanks encountered was still in the throes of its Big Bang in 1901: large and getting larger.

A studio employee dutifully replied, confirming that yes, it was the same man, adding, “Mr. ” Kenneth Davenport, as unofficial studio biographer, would later write: “He had thought to become a captain of industry and had enlisted as private, donning overalls—picturesque ones, you may be sure,—and learning all about the manufacture of bolts, nuts and hinges. But the rewards of the particular captain that came within his range of vision did not seem alluring enough to warrant Doug’s continuance in the hardware regiment.

Such exuberance was typical of him, as was what followed. “I was seized with a restless spirit,” he recalled later. “If life had some prize package for me, I wanted it tied up and delivered at once.  . I thought of London. Of course! One could not expect adventure to dwell in this prosaic land. * They had, he claimed, fifty dollars each. “I walked from Liverpool to London, from London to Dover, from Calais to Paris and even from Paris to Brussels,” he said. “I worked with street gangs, unloaded cobblestones from barges and formed amazing contacts with all sorts of people.

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A Secret Gift: How One Man's Kindness--and a Trove of Letters--Revealed the Hidden History of the Great Depression by Ted Gup


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