The Papers of Seymore Wainscott
Seymore Wainscott, born in 1737 in the Piedmont region of Virginia, is the central character in this fictional story of creative genius, home, family, and endurance.
The Papers of Seymore Waisncott is not just a story told as a narrative. Instead, it is an editorial project after the fashion of such monumental projects as the Papers of George Washington, The Papers of James Madison, and the collected writings of other luminaries of the 18th century. After all, Seymore Wainscott was the most gifted mouse of his time.
The Biography of Bevel Wainscott
Bevel Wainscott, Seymore's father, was among the founders of the Lanham Colony who endured the long ordeal of captivity during the planting. He and his family also survived the Great Fire that only a few years later took the lives and homes of many of the colonists.
Then, in 1743, his contact with the courier mice led him to establish a family business in Williamsburg. The Williamsburg years widened Seymore's childhood world to include not only the capitol, but lytfolc colonies at great houses throughout much of the Old Dominion.
The enterprise thrived and his family prospered until a personal calamity in 1755, robbed him of his business, scattered his family, and aimed a devastating blow at Seymore's prospects for the future.
Leornian Feldham's Voyage Diary
In 1789, Seymore Waisncott published Leornian Feldham's diary of travels to the Caribee Islands. Leornian, Seymore's father-in-law, was one of the greatest influences in Seymore's life, and the diary offers a captivating view of the wider world that is backdrop to Seymore Wainscott's story.
The voyage diary is filled with Leornian's sense of adventure and keen observation. His captivating narrative puts you aboard the creaking ships on which he sailed the tradewainds in company with "salts" and passengers from all over the world, and it opens to view the lytfolc world of the Carolina Tidewater and the Caribee Islands.
Intrigue stalks his travels from the James River to the Charles Town docks, to the Magnolia Plantation on the Ashley River, and from there to the West Indies. Even the journey home puts Leornian's life in danger.
The White Pavilion
In 1776, Seymore and Bryhta Wainscott moved their family to the orangery near the Great Hall at Lanham Plantation. The home they established there became known among the lytfolc as The White Pavilion. Merrinand Wainscott, born to Seymore and Bryhta in July of 1768, was almost eight years old when the family relocated. She grew up at The White Pavilion, living there until her marriage to Claxton Woodruff in the summer of 1795. Claxton took his bride home to Tuckahoe, near Richmond, Virginia. Confronted with making their own home, Merrinand wrote to Seymore and asked for insight into the creation of the home in which she grew up. This series of letters resulted.
Much was written during the latter part of Seymore Wainscott’s life—and a great deal more was written in the century following—concerning the breadth and depth of his genius and the magnitude of his accomplishments; however, the panes of the windows through which biographers sought to reveal his life were often cracked and smudged with the writer’s own ideas about achievement, success, and fame. A writer cannot pick up a pen without writing about himself to one degree or another, and notwithstanding sometimes Herculean efforts to the contrary, most of Seymore’s biographers searched for justification in his life for the ideas by which they sought to shape their own.
This collections of letters, out of the many documents in the wainscott collection, perhaps provides the most comprehensive introduction and explication of Seymore Wainscott himself because in it we glimpse the plumb line of all he thought and everything he did. In these letters to his beloved Nan, he touches upon every facet of his life, revealing the genesis, the topography, and the coastlines of what he thought and did, and why. We hear the simple music of his soul in words of truth about his life, as best he knew to tell it.
|Throughout his long and challenging career, Seymore Wainscott helped create and shape numerous enterprises. However, two of these entities were particularly crucial in establishing his personal independence: Lanham Press (est. 1770) and The Gatherum Archive and Library (est. 1787).|
Lanham Press gave Seymore his own public voice, enabling him to shape not only the message but its presentation. The Gatherum Archive and Library enlarged and facilitated his memory, along those unique threads of interest with which he had long been occupied.
The story of Seymore Wainscott cannot be fully told without the ability to peruse materials from the collection. To this end, Tanner Young is converting the Archive Document Viewer (used heretofore to present original source materials associated with My Father's Captivity) for use with original artworks and other materials pertaining to The Papers of Seymore Wainscott.