Abigail Padden located the following transcript one afternoon while helping me unpack boxes at the Imaginactory, surprisingly enough from the collection of Big Benny Cubbage, strange as is the idea of the illiterate stink-pot having any collection beyond commemorative beer cans. I have copied it word for word, leaving all errors in punctuation and orthography, partially to preserve the freshness of the document and partially to give my editor a break.
As near as can be ascertained, the interview was the first of a short-lived attempt to document the history and folklore of Sycamore Shadows. Several transcripts, of which this is one, deal with the prevalence of “consumption” (tuberculosis) in 19th Century Sycamore Shadows. From other notes, it may be assumed that the interviewer was a nurse, though she was not a native of the area and nothing else is known of her life. (more…)