All the Trappings of a Really Good Find (from Alabama to Connecticut)
This is a social sport and you can win by talking to everyone you meet. I found this story because I chatted it up with someone at a sale and was given a tip to "Look out for this sale coming up..." They were right, within a few weeks I was in Bethel Connecticut on an old farm road arriving at the home of a collector.
Although it was the last day, and the last hour of the sale, there was still a good quantity of things to look at. In the basement I managed to find what I was looking for. In the workshop, among all kinds of shelves and cabinets was an old desk. If untouched, these are often repositories, or micro time capsules. In this desk there was one drawer that wouldn't open and by removing the drawer above I was able to reach down and remove the contents. What I got was an assortment of papers and catalogs, and envelopes, including the one above. There was a sad but interesting letter inside:
"...My wife died and thank you for the order?!!" Let's skip over the personal message and get to the contents. We have some raccoons to catch!
It may be surprising but the fur trade was still active in the 1950's and if you had the time (and the horseshoe nails) you could made some money on those pelts. This is no less cruel and painful as the metal traps. Maybe trick number 2 is a little more humane...
Well, that was a little better, we presume the fox died of embarrassment and just handed his coat over to the hunter. Maybe this last method will have the hunter giving up his coat?
I've heard about someone being "drunk as a skunk" but not drunk as a raccoon. I hope the animals of the forest have learned to bring a designated driver from now on. It seems that Mr Conner had a rather regular home publishing business running right out of his home.
Someday I hope to find a copy of "Hill Billy Farmer." This was a sale from several years ago but it is one of my favorite pieces of correspondence - God rest Mrs. Connors soul... and the raccoons and foxes.