• U.S.

Letters, Aug. 6, 1951

5 minute read

Something for Delegates

Sir: Your Nov. 15, 1948 story interpreting the election returns has been worrying me for almost three years. Usually accurate, you seem to have missed entirely one big reason why many voters stayed away from the polls. It was not disinterest, but rather lack of a choice of candidates. We (and you would be surprised at how many there were of us) simply did not want to feel responsible in any part for the election of either Truman or Dewey.

With party nominations coming up, this is something for delegates to consider . . . MARGARET C. GALATAS Franklinton, La.

Inside U.S.A.

Sir: I have never read an article which made me as heartsick and physically ill as the one on the case of the Clarks and Cicero, Ill. [TIME, July 23].

Perhaps somebody . . . should revive the custom of feeding people to the lions . . . so that our fellow American citizens who seem to have so thoroughly forgotten what America stands for, could further enjoy themselves!

But one question plagues me. Where is our freedom from aggression when the police can no longer stop a mob bent upon the destruction of the property and even the lives of innocent people? MRS. SIDNEY LANIER Cambridge, Mass.

Sir: Congratulations to TIME for its magnificent stand against racial prejudice throughout the years.

The ugly race riot in Cicero, Ill., the refusal to permit Dr. Percy Julian, famed Negro chemist, to lunch at Chicago’s Union League Club even though he was invited, and the indignity heaped upon Josephine Baker here in Los Angeles are further examples of what “Dr. Stalin” ordered . . . ERIC SOKOLSKY Los Angeles

How Bells Get Up in Trees

Sir: In your July 16 story “The Bell of Kamela” we have a new variation of a perennial hoax. Older examples include the story of the Confederate general who, returning from the wars, stashed his sword in the fork of a young tree, whence it “grew” upward along with the tree only to be found long afterward, high above the ground, by the general’s grandson. Now we hear of a cowbell which, tied by a pioneer to a young sapling, is found presumably 73 years later at the top of a towering ponderosa pine.

As any freshman botany student knows, all of these reported events are biologically impossible, since they imply that trees grow from the bottom. Trees, contrary to popular opinion, grow from the ends of the branches and of the main trunk . . . H. E. BREWER Pullman, Wash.

Sir: . . . I can’t believe that the people of Kamela know so little about trees. As for your correspondent: Didn’t he ever see a fence stapled to a sapling? And did it grow skyward with the tree? . . . WILBUR O’BYRNE Blacksburg, Va.

Sir: . . . Remind me to lower the hammock, as the tree has grown since I hung it . . . WALTER S. PHILLIPS Tucson, Ariz.

Sir: . . . Please be advised that it was none other than Minnesota’s own Paul Bunyan who hung “Babe’s” bell on that pine tree during a sojourn on the coast . . . BILL MACCONNACHIE Cloquet, Minn.

Sir: . . . It might more likely have been dropped from a flying cow. WILLIAM S. GAFFNEY C/O Fleet P.O. San Francisco

Sir:. . . How many readers caught you up a tree? PAUL T. KENNEDY Seattle ¶ 95.—ED.

New Turnpike

Sir: More power to Andrew Wyeth [TIME, July 16]. I am so sick and tired of seeing things in your magazine called “Art”—things that look like nightmares! . . . RUTH WHITFIELD Greensboro, N.C.

Sir: Your piece is in every sense worthy of this gifted artist. It is good to know that this significant new movement has been recognized for what it is: a “new turnpike.” JOHN KOCH New York City

Sir: Andrew Wyeth, says TIME, is a puzzle to critics, but not to laymen. Will some layman . . . kindly explain to us why Young America is part worker, part soldier, drives a red bicycle to the left of the road, is moving at a fast clip but getting nowhere, and isn’t looking where he’s going? Young America, my foot! This jerk is right out of the Kremlin. LEWIS WILLIAMS Philadelphia

¶ To other critics of Young America, Artist Wyeth has said: “The picture is not satirical and does not represent things that people have read into it.” —ED.

The Colonel’s Adventures

Sir: Allow me to recall only two of the early adventures of Colonel Richard Meinertzhagen, D.S.O., featured in your July 2 issue as the world’s leading bird-lice catcher.

Colonel Meinertzhagen was the man who fooled Franz von Papen in Palestine [during World War I], exposing himself to a chase by German cavalry and losing a saddlebag full of carefully prepared misleading information about General Allenby’s plans. Meinertzhagen, moreover, is the only living European . . . who has entered the hallowed and mysterious cave of Machpelah* in the tomb of the patriarchs at Hebron.

In Allenby’s 1917 offensive, Meinertzhagen was the first staff officer to enter Hebron, from where all the native notables had fled. Looking for some secular or religious dignitary, Meinertzhagen came into the deserted mosque and found a door open, leading into vast, dimly lit souterrains. After a look at the enormous stone cenotaphs buried in dust, the colonel . . . left and finally found a rabbi, from whom to take the town over. Later on, when Meinertzhagen discussed his experience with [Father Hugues] Vincent, the famous Dominican archeologist, it became clear that he had actually been in the mausoleum of the patriarchs, missing in his hurry a unique and irretrievable chance for research . . . THEODORE F. MEYSELS Jerusalem

* Bought by Abraham, the first of the patriarchs, as a burial place for his wife Sarah and himself (Genesis 25).

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