Archibald Rutledge's Enduring Holiday Stories
Publication Year: 2012
Published by: University of South Carolina Press
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Title Page, Frontispiece, Copyright, Dedication
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Over the course of some three decades involving active study of the life and literary endeavors of Archibald Rutledge, many individuals have helped me or encouraged my efforts. Foremost in their ranks was the late Irvine Rutledge, Old Flintlock’s son. Irv was enthusiastic about my plans for a series of anthologies ...
A Note on Selection
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Unlike my previous Archibald Rutledge anthologies, selection of items for inclusion in the current one has been a relatively simple, straightforward undertaking. The seasonal focus explains this in large measure, but some mention of how the pieces included were located does seem merited. ...
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Hampton hunts and wildwood walks are experiences I have shared vicariously with Archibald Rutledge from the days of starry-eyed youth to the present. As a youngster his stories in Field & Stream and Outdoor Life so entranced me that I carefully timed my visits to the barbershop in order to be sure to face a lengthy wait for a barber’s chair. ...
Part I: Christmas in Dixie
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The hunting experience was part and parcel of the holiday season at Hampton, and the quest rightly holds preeminence in the contents of this anthology. Nonetheless Rutledge was closely attuned to the wider meaning of the season. He delighted in the simple joys of sharing and giving, not merely with his immediate family but with neighbors and, especially, the black residents on the plantation. ...
Part II: A Natural Christmas
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Today’s readers tend to remember Rutledge primarily as a hunting writer, and unquestionably he was a master of the genre. Yet during his lifetime he was at least as well known as a nature writer. The selections in this section offer solid evidence of why this was the case. ...
Part III: The Hampton Hunt: Whitetail Tales
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Christmas vacations at Hampton were filled with activity. They included joyous reunions with the black people resident on the plantation, who had not seen the Rutledge family since late summer, and a constant stream of visitors as family and friends from surrounding plantations, nearby McClellanville, and the Charleston area came to the stately old home; ...
Part IV: The Hampton Hunt: Other Game
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This piece first appeared in the August 1920 issue of Field & Stream and later was included in Plantation Game Trails (pages 160–64). At the time quail, those noble little patricians of fence rows and overgrown ditches, patches of broomsedge and unharvested field corners were plentiful. ...
Part V: Christmas Verse
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Without much question, posterity remembers and honors Rutledge more for his prose than his poetry. Booksellers indicate that his collections of stories are in greater demand than those bringing together poems, although the scarcity of both attests to his enduring popularity. ...
Part VI: Feasting at Hampton: The Culinary Aspects of a Low Country Christmas
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Writing in My Colonel and His Lady, a moving tribute to his parents, Rutledge offered some insight into the kind of fare that was standard for the holidays at Hampton. “I hate,” he ventured, “to describe a plantation Christmas dinner if I cannot offer my readers the dinner itself.” ...
About the Editor
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Jim Casada, a retired history professor, is one of the country’s most widely published outdoor writers. He has written or edited more than forty books, contributed to many others, and authored some five thousand magazine articles. ...
Page Count: 248
Publication Year: 2012