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and they’ve rusted and most ruined the skirt

The next morning Marjorie overslept and came hurrying down to breakfast. “How much time have I got?” she demanded. “Why, what’s the matter with that clock! It’s stopped, mother.”
      “Yes,” agreed the little mother serenely, “I didn’t wind it, you know. I was afraid that was puttering.”

— Ruth Cameron, “Puttering,” in her Chit-chat (Chicago, 1911) : 65-67
opens to same at hathitrust

In which Mother agrees to stop “puttering,” as an experiment.

Ruth Cameron was the pen name of Persis Dwight Hannah (1886-1965)

see Janet Hutchins, “#WHM – Persis Dwight Hannah, Alpha Xi Delta and Reporter,” posted March 27, 2016 at Fraternity History & More, a blog in which “Fraternity/Sorority Historian Fran Becque, Ph.D., shares stories connecting the past to the present and the future” — here

Something about Cameron (and class, and condescension... and philanthropy and tuberculosis) in Lynn Downey, her Arequipa Sanatorium : Life in California’s Lung Resort for Women (2019) : 68

Full transcription of “Puttering” follows.

16 March 2022