THIS IS SURRATTS FOUNDATION E-NOTICE 2011-3 OF MARCH 1, 2011
Here are some items that might be of interest:
1. MORE ABOUT "THE CONSPIRATOR". Some of our more mature readers may have seen the cover story in the March/April 2011 AARP magazine about Robert Redford, with the subtitle "The fiercely private actor-director talks about fame, family and his new film, The Conspirator." The article notes that "Redford's latest directorial project is soon to be released in theaters. 'The Conspirator' tells the story of Mary Surratt (played by Robin Wright), whose boardinghouse was a meeting place for John Wilkes Booth and fellow plotters of Abraham Lincoln's assassination. Charged with conspiring in the president's murder, Surratt is reluctantly represented at trial by a young Union war hero (James McAvoy). The political climate of post-Civil War Washington – when individual rights sometimes took a backseat to national security – mirrors post-9/11 America, Redford admits: 'We don't seem to learn from our own history. But whatever parallels exist are up to the audience to find; it won't be a needles in a haystack. My focus is on the emotional arc of the characters. What I loved about this story was the two characters who start off at opposite sides and move together and across each other.'"
[Ed. Note: It's sounding more and more from the advanced press like Mary Surratt indeed will be the focus of "The Conspirator." It will be very interesting for history buffs to see if Mary is presented more in her "probably guilty" or "probably innocent" persona.]
And we received this important technical observation about "The Conspirator":
"Henry: Thanks for the news that you send every month, but we all should be pretty mad that Robert Redford (whom the Yahoo article that appears in the February 1 e-Notice referred to as being "historically accurate") had the nerve to shoot this film about Surrattsville in Savannah, Georgia (see http://savannahnow.com/news/2009-10-13/robert-redfords-movie-conspirator-begins-filming). I thought you should tell people before they are all majorly disappointed when they see the film. All the best! J.P. Szymkowicz (87)"
[Ed. Note: … adding to our disappointment that our own Oscar winner, Marcia Gay Harden (76), wasn't cast in the role of Mary Surratt!. Speaking of Marcia, I imagine that some of our readers took issue with her being listed by CNBC in a February 28 piece as one of fifteen powerful screen actors "hit with the Oscar curse." (http://www.cnbc.com/id/41720860) Marcia's work since winning the Oscar for "Pollock" has often been some of the best in film history, regardless of whether she has won a second Oscar!]
2. … AND MORE SOUTHERN MARYLAND HISTORY. We received this interesting email from Serena Karandy Butch (73): "Hi Henry: I am a youth librarian in a public library in upstate New York. I recently read a wonderful children's book called Countdown by Deborah Wiles. It is set in Camp Springs, during the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. There are some familiar references to the area and the author did live there for several years in the 60s with her military family. It is the first of a trilogy, so I am looking forward to the next two. Check it out in the children's area of your favorite public library! Thanks! Serena"
3. THE LATEST REPORT FROM AFGHANISTAN. We received this latest interesting report from the war zone from Rix Mills (62): "Henry: I'm back in Afghanistan again! This time I'm on a slightly different mission than before, admittedly less altruistic, but necessary nonetheless. I was sent here to improve the Afghan Police intelligence analysis capability so that they can figure out what is happening to them and take measures to stop the tremendous loss of life in their ranks each month due to Taliban attacks, tribal disputes, family conflicts, common criminals, corruption and the list goes on. This may be the closest to mission impossible that I have come in my career but it is only for four months and then I will decide if I want to continue or yield to the next brave soul. I am working with a group of former police officers from Northern Ireland who have seen their share of terrorism and used intelligence successfully to their benefit to stop their own acute internal problems in the past. Whether their experience has any application here is another question altogether but they seem to think so. Fortunately, they haven't mentioned anything adverse about my family that came to America from Northern Ireland or are keeping it to themselves like all good cops to be used at a later date uncertain! Rix"
[Ed. Note: Unfortunately, Rix also reported that after only three weeks in Afghanistan on his current mission, Rix came down with bronchitis and typhoid fever. Rix noted: "The problem here is that there is so much contamination in the air that it is only a matter of time before something gets you. Kabul is a nasty place and we are protected to the upmost but the filth just gets through anyway. I am living in a fortress-like, multi-block area called the "Green Zone" and there are more bunkers, razor wire and guards than you can believe. We back up to the US Embassy and can use their facilities, which is quite handy. All in all, it isn't bad but the environment is deadly!" We're sending strong get well wishes to Rix!]
4. TEEN CLUB STARS RE-UNITE FOR MARCH 12 SHOW IN GREENBELT. Some of our readers who were Teen Club and School dance regulars in the early 1970s may have fond memories of the great band Slow Rush. Slow Rush recently reunited and has been playing gigs in the D.C. area. (Your editor saw them last year in North Beach and they were fantastic!) On March 11, a special version of the reunited Slow Rush – featuring not only Jimi Simon (71) on keyboards but also Bart Windsor (69) on vocals, will play a show on March 12 at the Greenbelt American Legion Post 136 from 8:30 p.m. – 1 a.m. (A Facebook page about the event can be found at http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=163565270362455.) This event is sure to bring back some great musical memories!
5. 1969 AND 1970 BOOMERANGS SOUGHT. Steve Ryle is trying to locate a copy of the 1969 Boomerang. Please contact Steve at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any information that might be helpful. And Pat McArthur (70) is trying to locate a copy of the 1970 Boomerang. Please contact Pat at email@example.com if you have any information that might be helpful.
6. MORE MARLOW HEIGHTS MEMORIES. We received these great Marlow Heights holiday memories from Sandy Miller Oursler (72): "Hi Henry: I find the stories of Marlow Heights very interesting as I remember each year a few days before Christmas, yes a few days....back in the olden days, people did not go Christmas shopping 2 months ahead of time, anyway, a few days before Christmas, my Mom and Dad would load up the old station wagon with us 7 siblings who by the way all graduated from Surrattsville back when we started out in first grade, no kinder garden back then, going to Surrattsville Elementary , Surrattsville Junior, and then on to Surrattsville Senior to graduate and would make a trip to Marlow Heights for a few hours to all do our shopping. It seemed like it took us so long to make that trip from all the way down from Clinton, Piscataway Rd, across from Hyde Field Airport......but we did. The best part was we (us kids) got all our shopping done with about $10. We couldn't wait to get home so that we could start wrapping.....I remember stopping at "Mr. H" to get a burger, it was somewhere around where they have Public Storage and what used to be" Cole's Ethan Allen Furniture" store. Like the last news letter stated, this was one of the closest shopping centers around. Boy, they had so many stores to choose from, although I only remember shopping in Woolworth's. I think that is what it was called....Thanks for the memories. Hope everyone is staying safe and enjoying life. Sandy"
7. SEEKING INFO ON COACH BEAVER. Lee Pascasio (64) is seeking information on football Coach Beaver from the 1960s. Please send Lee an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any information that might be helpful.
8. ACHIEVEMENT AWARD NOMINEES SOUGHT. This is the time of year when the Foundation Board seeks nominees for the Foundation's annual Achievement Awards. Photos and bios of past years' absolutely outstanding Achievement Award recipients (including the aforementioned Rix Mills) can be found on the Foundation's web site at http://www.surrattsville.org/achievement/index.shtml. If you know of a member of the Surrattsville community who you would like to nominate for a 2010 Award, please send me an email at email@example.com.
9. SAVE THE DATES: JUNE 24 AND JUNE 25. Thanks to the very active and organized Class of 76, the entire Surrattsville community is invited to "Surrattsville Night" at the Maryland Blue Crabs stadium in Waldorf on Saturday June 25. A special outfield picnic area will be set aside for the Surrattsville community, and a single price will cover admission and food. Additional details will be published in future e-Notices.
In addition, the Class of 76 is planning some Class-specific events for Friday June 24 and Saturday June 25, so Class of 76 members should check out the Class of 76 Group on Facebook for more information about those events.
10. SEEKING LOST HORNETS. Dick Duke (47) is trying to get in touch with members of the Classes of 46, 47 and 48. Please contact Dick at 734-769-0467, or firstname.lastname@example.org, if you have any info that might be helpful.
11. ALL CLASSES/FACULTY/STAFF DIRECTORIES AVAILABLE. Thanks to the herculean work of Pat Becker Oles (71), the Foundation's 2000 Alumni/Faculty/Staff Directory has been updated for 2010, and now includes fascinating "what I'm up to" paragraphs from those who submitted directory information. If you would like a copy of the Directory, send a $20 check payable to the Foundation to: Henry Smith, One W. Pennsylvania Avenue, Suite 950, Towson, MD 21204.
12. "SURRATTSVILLE ALUMNI" WINDOW STICKERS AVAILABLE. Pat Becker Oles (71) also kindly handles the Foundation's "Surrattsville Alumni" window stickers project. Pat notes that the stickers are not the "static cling type," that stick to the inside of a window. Instead, they are the "stick to the outside type," that can stick on a window or bumper, and use "repositional adhesive" (meaning no sticky residue). Information about purchasing the stickers can be found on the web site at surrattsville.org.
13. CLASS OF 2001 PLANS REUNION. The Class of 2001 is beginning work on planning for its ten year reunion, to be held on Saturday June 4, 2011 from 6 p.m. to 12 a.m., at a location to be determined. Please contact Jacquelyn Towns at email@example.com or Courtney Graham at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any contact info on members of the Class of 2001 or if you would like further information. The Class also has a Facebook page called “The Official c/o 2001 Reunion Page,” which contains photos and information to date.
14. BOOMERANGS AVAILABLE. The Foundation has a limited supply of yearbooks from 1991, 1999, 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2006. If you'd like one of these yearbooks (which are available for $15 including shipping and handling), please send me an email to email@example.com.
15. POSSIBLE 80/81 REUNION. The Classes of 80 and 81 are planning a possible reunion for June 2011. They need a contact person for the Class of 80. Please contact Teresa Blandford Pepper at firstname.lastname@example.org to provide contact info.
16. CLASS OF 61 PLANS REUNION. The Class of 1961 will celebrate its 50th Class Reunion at the Colony South Hotel and Conference Center in Clinton. This three day event will take place on June 24-26, 2011. Classmates from other Classes who may be interested are invited to join the celebration. If anyone has any information on missing Class members (listed at the end of this e-Notice) or would like information regarding the reunion, please contact: Don Byroads at 301-475-0127 or email@example.com or Darleen Mabry Burgess at 301-449-7261 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
I hope some of you soon will be seeing some tiny hints of Spring! Henry Smith (71)
MANY THANKS TO THESE (EARLY) DONORS TO THE 2011 CAMPAIGN!
Becker Oles (71)
AND MANY THANKS TO THESE MANY DONORS TO THE 2010 CAMPAIGN!
Bob Marr (71)