Teddy Roosevelt's Daughter
“What will he write of us, Cissy, this young man who has taken it upon himself to tell our stories?”
“I’m not a mind reader, Alice.”
“He never met us. He didn’t know us. He has seen us only through the lens of books he little more than scanned.”
“He will write what he will write.”
“But I’m so tired of it all, these writers who remember only the scandals.”
“I don’t think he’s like that. His book will be historical fiction.”
“That’s even worse.”
“Historical fiction. What does that mean?”
“He plans to tell the tale we hid from the world, Alice, not the tales that have been told before.”
“Good god, you don’t mean…”
“Yes. You, me and Ellie. Cal, Willie and Nick.”
“Please tell me you’re only being mean.”
“Alice, it’s happening. Face it. He pieced it all together.”
“You and I were friends once, Cissy.”
“But not anymore.”
“No, not anymore.”
– Alice Roosevelt Longworth (1884 – 1980)
– Eleanor Medill “Cissy” Patterson (1884 – 1948)
As I write the words of Cissy and Alice, they step from an unchanging past into a myriad of possible futures. They step tentatively at first, testing the waters of time with pointed toes as though the temperature might be unkind.
Then they rush laughing into life, dancing on the waters as they understand the opportunity they've been given.
I’m writing the chaotic story of the intersecting lives of six persons. Dozens of books have been written about five of the six, though no author has ever noticed that all five were actors in a single play.
The sixth invididual, Cal Carrington, was also real and his relationship with the five was exactly as I will describe.
My novel begins in 1884 and ends in 1948. Teddy Roosevelt makes an occasional appearance, although he is not a principal character.
The encounters and relationships I've woven together were sucked from the dark archives of Time Magazine, the diaries of neighbors, books written by other authors and my own imagination. I've been researching the sacred six since February, 2001.
I believe their story would have been told long ago except that Alice Roosevelt would have sued for slander. And since Alice outlived the other five, their amazing story died with her.
Roy H. Williams
PS – I’ll let you know when the book is complete. Princess Pennie has asked me to share some of the story with our guests at my 50th birthday party on March 29. I hope to see you then. – RHW