By Ted Gup

ISBN-10: 1101444630

ISBN-13: 9781101444634

An inspiring account of the USA 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.

almost immediately sooner than Christmas 1933 in Depression-scarred Canton, Ohio, a small newspaper advert provided $10, no strings hooked up, 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 support his fellow Cantonians as they ready for the most harsh Christmas such a lot of them may ever witness.

Moved via the stories of anguish and expressions of desire inside the letters, which he stumbled on in a suitcase seventy five years later, Ted Gup at the beginning got down to unveil the lives at the back of them, trying to find files and relations everywhere in the kingdom who may aid him flesh out the relatives sagas hinted at in these letters. From those resources, Gup has re-created the effect that Mr B. Virdot's present had on every one kinfolk. many of us yearned for bread, coal, or different prerequisites, yet many others got cash from B. Virdot for extra fanciful items-a toy horse, say, or a suite of encyclopedias. As Gup's investigations published, a lot of these issues had the ability to show people's lives round- even to save lots of them.

yet as he exposed the discomfort and triumphs of dozens of strangers, Gup additionally realized that Sam Stone was once way more advanced than the cute- retiree character he'd continually 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 the sort of robust affinity to strangers in want. Drawing on his certain locate and his award-winning reportorial presents, Ted Gup solves a novel relations secret even whereas he pulls away the veil of 8 a long time that separate us from the hardships that united the USA in the course of the melancholy. In A mystery Gift, he weaves those revelations seamlessly right into a tapestry of Depression-era the United States, as a way 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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Corman got to hear how Coppola by some adroit wheeling and dealing had managed to swell his own bank account with $40,000 of production money and was accountable to no one as to how he spent it. The producer accordingly wanted to withdraw his half of the money from the production—to no avail, since the entire amount was in Coppola's own account. Coppola then settled down to write a screenplay, working virtually non-stop for three frantic days and nights. He developed his original concept into a full-length script, which he typed directly onto mimeograph stencils for immediate distribution to cast and crew.

Francis was paralyzed for a year, which he spent in his bedroom at home. No other children came to visit, because polio was a contagious disease. But nearly half a century later, when he made Jack, a film about a freakish kid with no friends, he remembered when, as a polio victim, he longed to play with other children. Still, some of his relatives brought him presents to cheer him up. "I had a television, an 8 mm movie projector, a tape recorder, a ventriloquist's dummy, and puppets," he recalls; "I became a ventriloquist and a puppeteer.

The picture qualifies as a "nudie" because of the succession of topless girls who parade through the movie. Consequently, it comes across as an extended version of a bawdy burlesque skit rather than a porno flick. Although both the Cowie and Schumacher biographies of Coppola assert that Tonight for Sure is a black-and-white movie, all of the footage is in color (albeit muddy, dingy color), with the color photography for the Coppola segments shot mostly by his classmate Jack Hill. Carmine Coppola (listed in the credits as Carmen) supplied the jazzy score for the picture and would score other Coppola films in the future.

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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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