In Cleveland, Ohio, at a drugstore on East 152nd Street, on Sunday, December 1st, 1912…

Sherwood Anderson, 36, founder and president of the successful American Merchants Company in nearby Elyria, Ohio, hands the pharmacist his address book and asks the startled man to help him figure out who he is. Anderson’s business suit is splattered with mud; he is unshaven and confused.

The pharmacist finds the number of an Elyria businessman, who comes to get Anderson and checks him into the Huron Road Hospital.

His wife, Cornelia, 35, rushes to the hospital to see him. For the past four days, no one has known where Anderson was. His secretary said that last Thursday he was dictating a letter to her, stopped, wrote a note to Cornelia, stood up, said:

‘I feel as though my feet were wet, and they keep getting wetter,’

and walked out of the office.

The note Anderson wrote to his wife said,

‘Cornelia:  There is a bridge over a river with cross-ties before it. When I come to that I’ll be all right. I’ll write all day in the sun and the wind will blow thru my hair. —Sherwood’

Lying in the Cleveland hospital, Anderson slowly starts to remember his wife, his children, his life in Elyria. He still doesn’t know why he is here.  But he knows one, specific, thing. He knows he is going to be a writer.

 

Sherwood Anderson

Sherwood Anderson

This year, we’ll be telling stories about these groups of ‘such friends,’ before, during and after their times together.

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