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New York Folklore Quarterly, Vol. XVIII, No. 1, Spring 1962

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Vol. XVIII, No. 1, Spring 1962

Mari Schaus

IN a quandary for a new and different Yorker convention project, we racked our brains for a unique idea. We finally settled on marionettes with which we would perform three plays concerning the folklore of upper New York State. In January this seemed to be an insurmountable project which would devour much time and demand a great deal of resourcefulness on our part. As the next four months sped on, we realized that our little people made a very enjoyable project.

Our first thought was transportation. The marionettes were really no problem, but a large truck would be required to carry the theater to and from Lake Placid where the Yorker convention was to be held. We lacked sufficient funds for a costly haul, so we decided on a portable, yet serviceable theater that would fit easily in a car.

Our theater was fashioned in heavy cardboard to resemble an old story book, having three pages measuring four by three feet. It was made at a bookbinders to insure its authenticity and durability. When finished, we titled it “My Grandfather Said.”

We then wrote three short plays: “Tom Quick,” concerning a fearless and resourceful woodsman; “A Great Day in Galway,” a play retelling a humorous episode in Galway folklore; and a play introduced by folksinger Frank Warner and his friend Yankee John Galusha as they visited together in Yankee John’s kitchen in Minerva, New York. This play dealt with the hot times the lumberjacks had on Blue Mountain Lake....

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