Twentieth Century Literary Club

The Sept. 16 meeting of the Twentieth Century Literary Club was held at the home of Pat Hopf, who also presented the program. This Sept. 16 meeting was the first meeting held since the COVID-19 outbreak. The last regularly scheduled meeting was March 18.

The Club Collect and the Pledge of Allegiance were recited. Information was given on the Derexa King Award for Literary Excellence, which is presented annually by the club to Jasper High School students. The winner of this year's award, an engraved desk clock, was Bennett Schmitt, whose composition was "Voices." The runner-up award, an engraved key chain, was presented to Kamila Graham, whose composition was "A Shoreless Space." The Derexa King Award is presented in memory of Derexa Savage King who was a former member of the Twentieth Century Literary Club. she was the first woman to practice law in Dubois County. This is the 33rd year the Derexa King Award has been presented.

Anne Tangeman was complimented for compiling and presenting the annual membership booklets. The booklet lists the members, the dates of the upcoming meetings and the hostess for each month. Anne also gave the treasurer's report.

Pat Hopf reported on the book, "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn," by Betty Smith, published in 1943. This book is the coming-of-age story of young, sensitive and idealistic Francie Nolan and her formative years in the turn of the century slums of Brooklyn, New York. It is difficult to describe the plot, but one could say that everything that can happen in life happens, from birth and death to marriage and bigamy. It might be easiest to say it is a story about what it means to be human. It is a book about city life and a story of grinding poverty, but the themes are farther-reaching: the fabric of family, the limits of love and the birth of knowledge.

Betty Smith, the author, was born in 1896 in Brooklyn, New York, and grew up there. "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn" has been translated into more than 15 languages and has been made into a motion picture. There is no doubt this is an autobiographical story.

The next meeting of the club will be Wednesday, Oct. 21, at the home of Judy Welp, who will also present the program.


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