&Wombats and Such&: Calvin and Grace Coolidge and Their Pets


I’ve stumbled upon this delightful article before, yet the record shows that I haven’t Stumbled Upon it, so I now rectify the situation. The quote’s a bit long, but it’s worth a read. And the article itself is fantastic. For the record, I have no opinion of Calvin Coolidge, the President, but I’m a big fan of Calvin Coolidge, the Wit, and Calvin and Grace Coolidge, the Lovers of Animals sound like delightful people:

We were also at home to a family of mice, who had a private entrance behind a large davenport placed across one corner of the dining room, which served as a sitting room for we had our meals downstairs in the main dining room. Seated at my desk one evening I was suddenly aware that I had a visitor, who had arrived unannounced and was sitting up looking me over as critically as any other guest who had favored me with a call. Finding me amiable, he got down and began an inspection of the place. I made no protest, sitting quite still and allowing him to go about at his will. Having completed his tour of investigation, he disappeared beneath the davenport, presumably to report on his findings to his family, and I arose to do a little investigating of my own, discovering that he had made his exit by way of a small semicircular hole in the baseboard just above the concrete flooring. On several succeeding evenings we were dining out, but on the next evening which we spent at home my little visitor in gray was back again and brought one of the children. In accordance with the rules of hospitality I served tea. The larder afforded only pieces of dry cracker, but these seemed to meet with approval and were quickly nibbled away. From then on, Father Gray looked to me for daily food for his family, consisting of himself and his wife and several children. Mother Gray was a rather portly lady, and when she paid me a visit she found the doorway a bit low and narrow, but she was resourceful as well as plump, and she managed to enter by turning over on her back, placing her feet against the baseboard and pushing herself through. I brought all sorts of delicacies from the hotel table for the delectation of these visitors of mine, and I firmly believe that I thus acquired some friends in Washington who would have pronounced me the perfect hostess.

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