Going through my grandmother’s things recently, at the old folks home, my mother found a letter that H.L. Mencken sent to my great-grandmother in 1926. Short and expressing genuine bewilderment, this letter references a point of conflict that Mencken simply calls “this Becky Bolling bilge.” (Preliminary research hasn’t revealed what this was.)
The letter, signed by the man himself, begins: “Dear Mrs. Whitehead:- I am genuinely astonished that you should think me an idiot.”
I’m an admirer of much of Mencken’s work, but I couldn’t be prouder of my great-grandma for provoking his pen.