Shooting Down Myths about Annie Oakley : LUSENET : TB2K spinoff uncensored : One Thread

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Shooting down myths about Annie Oakley

July 9, 2000, Columbus Dispatch

John Switzer

The other day I read Annie Oakley's motto for success: "Aim at a high mark and you will hit it. No, not the first time, nor the second and maybe not the third. But keep on aiming and keep on shooting, for only practice will make you perfect. Finally, you'll hit the bull's-eye of Success."

The motto is in one of Oakley's scrapbooks from the early 1900s, said Beth Edwards, president of the Annie Oakley Foundation in the Darke County community of Greenville, Ohio.

Edwards is on a crusade to stamp out some of the myths about Oakley, who was born in Darke County in 1860 and whose real name was Phoebe Ann Mozee.

"One of them is that Annie was a dumb little hick that stumbled out of Ohio -- like they are portraying her on the Broadway stage right now," Edwards said. She said Bernadette Peters portrays Oakley in Annie Get Your Gun as a hayseed with wild hair.

"She was a bright little gal who learned very quickly, she had a wide-open mind, and she couldn't have done what she did if she was ignorant," Edwards said. "She made her way by her wits and muscle. She was a child prodigy, really. She broke ground for women in so many ways. She was also a fashion trendsetter."

Oakley was one of the first women to wear knee-length skirts, but when she did, she always wore leggings to cover her legs. One facet of her life that is not a myth was a love affair with her husband, Frank Butler, that lasted 46 years.

"They each had a terrific sense of humor and loved to tease each other," Edwards said. Butler wrote poetry to Oakley, and the humor is obvious: "They fished together, he and she, beside a mountain brook. He used minnows for his bait, she used a sweet and saucy look And when they quit the noisy stream, the maiden's home they sought He hadn't hooked a single thing, but a sucker she had caught."

In a more tender mood, Butler wrote this poem called Little Rain Drops: "There's a charming little girl, she's many miles from here She's a loving little fairy, you'd fall in love to see her. Her presence would remind you of an angel in the skies, And you bet I love this little girl, with the raindrops in her eyes."

-- (, July 10, 2000


That was really cool. Thanks KB =o)

-- cin (cin@cin.cin), July 10, 2000.

Shoot, I always thought Annie Oakley was a diesel-dyke. Maybe I've got her confused with Calamity Jane.

-- (, July 10, 2000.

She's a loving little fairy? What a relief for the millions of Annie Oakly fans.Why don't you just bore us to tears.

-- Dan Newsome (, July 10, 2000.

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