This week I was the delighted guest of Bas Bleu (Blue Ladies), a local women’s service club. What a warm and dedicated group of women! First we enjoyed an exquisite meal of shrimp, rice, veggies and some really lush chocolate cake! (Thanks to the great chef at the Catawba Country Club)
I was excited to meet Melinda Herzog the new director at the Catawba County Historical Association. We are so lucky to have such an accomplished woman at the helm of that organization! Melinda talked briefly to the group about the polio and “Miracle of Hickory” exhibit that the association is putting together.
And then I shared my PowerPoint presentation on BLUE and the "Miracle of Hickory".
There were so many people in the group with a polio related story. Some had family members who volunteered at our 1944 emergency polio hospital. And Grace, a lovely woman at my table is married to a man who had polio.
I really think that America was so relieved when the polio vaccine came out, that as a nation, we tried to forget all those painful years of epidemics. But, of course, those who were affected by polio could not forget. And finally their stories are being told - through fiction, nonfiction and even in film.
A few titles you may enjoy include:
Blue by Me Joyce Moyer Hostetter
Wilma Unlimited: How Wilma Rudolph Became the World's Fastest Woman - by Kathleen Krull
The Wonder Kid – George Harrar
Small Steps: The Year I Got Polio – Peg Kehret
A Friendship For Today – by Patricia McKissack
We Are All Welcome Here – Elizabeth Berg
An American Summer – Frank Deford
Polio: An American Story by David M. Oshinsky
Breath: Life in the Rhythm of an Iron Lung - by Martha Mason
Martha In Lattimore – documentary film about Martha Mason who has been in an iron lung for over 50 years.