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Quills, Seals, and Ink: Letter Writing in the Age of Jackson, 1790-1830

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A presentation on the art of letter-writing as it was done before the internet, telegraph, and the envelope, presented by Brian Allison.

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Quills, Seals, and Ink: Letter Writing in the Age of Jackson, 1790-1830

"We have not heard from you as often as you wished since you left us..."

- Penelope Overton to John Overton, July 4, 1799

Historic Travellers Rest is excited to collaborate with local author Brian Allison to present a virtual program at 4 p.m. on April 11, 2021 focusing on writing in the age of John Overton and Andrew Jackson.

This virtual program is described by Allison as “a presentation on the art of letter-writing as it was done before the internet, the telegraph, and even the envelope. From quill pens to steel pens, sealing wax and pounce pots, we will talk a bit about the lost art of correspondence as it was done in the days after the United States was founded, and talk about how the often-overwhelmed postal system kept a fledgling frontier in Tennessee connected with friends and family far away. And if you are interested in trying it yourself, we shall discuss where to look for the materials to get started in this ancient art.”

Brian Allison is a local author and historian who has spent two decades working in the field of public history. During that time, he has acquired a great deal of experience working in many capacities for several museums.

This is a pay what you choose program. We recommend a donation of $15 to support our ongoing educational programming efforts. The program will be live at 4pm CST and the recording will be shared with those that register the following week.

For those who would like to enjoy the program, but cannot attend live, we will send a recording to all registrants the week following the live program.


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