Before my granddaddy Elmer Baird settled down on the farm with his wife Evelyn he spent a few years as a newspaper reporter, notice that I said his wife and not "my grandmother." The Spanish American War was over and he considered himself fortunate to have escaped his time in Cuba with no more than a bad knee courtesy of a Spanish M93 Mauser.
Elmer was a type of newspaperman known as a stringer. Stringers didn’t have a regular job with one paper but covered for whatever paper had a need at the time. The two papers he contributed to mostly were The Daily Tribune and The National Register.
Elmer lived to an old age, and after he passed I received a box from his estate. The box contains a suitcase filled with an assortment of artifacts of Elmer's once vibrant life. In sorting through Elmer's preserved life, I discovered that Elmer was also on a personal mission as he traveled for the newspapers. His wife Evelyn who was an accomplished gardener had the desire to have a blue rose in her garden. Always after that headline-grabbing story, Elmer also had to keep a sharp eye out for that elusive blue rose.
The box that was delivered by FedEx to my front porch was one of those cardboard types with the built-in folding handles and was marked "DELIVER TO ADDRESSEE ONLY." Noted on the outside also was the declaration N.O.I.B.N., which from my old retails days I know it stands for not otherwise identifiable by name. Upon opening the box I found that it contained a suitcase filled with an assortment of artifacts of Elmer's life. Photos, telegrams, journals, notes, and some of his gear make up the bulk of the contents.