Autograph Book, Page 4

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Top Left: My Fellas

To Minnie.

The verb, I love, I learned at school,
Thou lovest, follows next in rule;
We love let us say together,
Proving thus we love each other.

Ever your friend.

Mattituck, July. 21, 1881.

This note from Annie was a bit tricky, as it took me a few passes to get acquainted with her letter “M.” The end of the letter has a slight swirl to it, a backwards curl that almost resembles a lower case “q.”

Also, this is the first example of a note written in the corner of the page. Throughout the book, several persons have left small phrases or words – written in the corner of the page, always at a diagonal. I’m not sure if these are in-jokes, or whether they bear some kind of additional significance as to the place where the message was inscribed. In a lot of cases, the messages are incredibly mysterious – with little clues as to their meaning.

For this page, the inscription in the top left looks like the words “My Fellas.” I can’t be 100% on this though, as the “s” looks a little different from other “s’s” in the actual body of the message. I’m also not sure about the underlines and what look like quotation marks. Or are they tick marks, keeping some kind of score?

Identifying the location as Mattituck took a little while, but once I recognized the letter “M,” it made sense. A quick Google search reveals that Mattituck is a CDP/hamlet in Suffolk County, New York.

Established in 1678, Mattituck today has about 5,000 residents and sounds quaint and lovely. One of the biggest events in the area is the annual strawberry festival, which has been running for 58 years.

It’s interesting to think that, from the time Annie signed Minnie’s book… another 74 years would have to pass, before the first strawberry festival was held.

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