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Sunday, July 15, 2012

Mark Wilson and other storytellers we miss

My "WP" for Western Pal, storyteller Mark Wilson died recently.  At the 2012 National Storytelling Conference, I brought to the Storytell swap photos Mark sent me and offered everybody their choice of one.  I've decided to broaden that offering by posting them online to let others see more about Mark and many storytellers he photographed, starting with others no longer with us.

On Michigan there's a special page called In Memoriam that  attempts to recognize Michigan storytellers deserving our remembering.  It can only be complete if we remember those who helped build storytelling.  Just as the African story of “The Cowtail Switch” (found in the book of the same name by Harold Courlander) ends, “For it is a saying among them that a man is not really dead until he is forgotten.”  Let the stories of our storytelling family never be forgotten.

First of all here's Mark.  His note on the back says "Me and my tomato plants (top of my hat is about 6 1/2')"

Mark sent me many photos to help me get to know members of STORYTELL and other storytellers before I ever had a chance to attend any conferences.  We kept hoping we'd get to the same conference at the same time, but he was very much a WP and didn't make any of the same ones I've been able to attend.  Because the 2012 conference especially remembers Those Who Have Gone Before, here are some of his photos for storytellers whose voices have been stilled in this world.
Brother Blue

Chuck Larkin

Rose Owens "The Story Lady"

The next photo is of a storyteller who, as far as I know, is alive, but seems to have gone silent.  He is missed by those of us he mentored.  Wherever he is, the Storytell community has wished he would get in touch with us.
Papa Joe, "Oh, Brother, Where Art Thou?"

This was the first of four posts of Mark's photos.  The next post will be of current storytelling members from those past conferences Mark attended.  After that will be a post from the Providence and possibly Denver and Bellingham conference festivities -- NSN clearly had a lot of fun!  The final post will be of Mark's home area.

There has been a wonderful development from this series.  Please see the latest article for this month titled "Rose Is Alive!"


Stephen Hollen said...

How I miss Mark and Chuck. Both wonderful friends.

Lois Sprengnether Keel said...

Stephen, I agree whole-heartedly. When Chuck came to my library I wrote a press release calling him "a national treasure." They were both friends to me and I am privileged to memorialize each of them here.

Hope Baugh said...

Thanks for these, Lois. I didn't realize Rose had died. I'm sorry to hear that, but glad to see this photo of her.