Scanning the Chicago shelves at the Newberry Library Book Fair the title of a flowered fabric-covered book caught my eye. But I only picked up A Great-Grandmother Remembers during a second review of the shelves. I’m so glad I did. What a truly amazing find! In this book Addie Hibbard Gregory shared her experiences growing up and living on Prairie Avenue in Chicago. She was twelve years old during the Chicago Fire and lived through both world wars.
The book alone is interesting. (I stayed up late reading it.) But tucked inside were newspaper clippings from the book’s release in 1940, a letter written by Hibbard Gregory, and a memorial card. Yeah it’s autographed copy number 354. 500 were printed. Although I cannot be sure of the exact provenance, it appears from the inscription that the book belonged to a member of the Blatchford family, perhaps Frances Blatchford, at one time. The Newberry Library houses this family’s papers.http://mms.newberry.org/xml/xml_files/Blatchford.xml#bio1