[Ads-l] Zoar survivor quote=?UTF-8?Q?=E2=80=94Errol_?=Morris versions
thegonch at GMAIL.COM
Tue Jun 1 15:26:23 EDT 2021
According to findagrave.com
Hilda Morhart died in 1978, and is buried in the Zoar Cemetery
Hilda R. Dischinger Morhart (1900-1978) - Find A Grave Memorial
On Tue, Jun 1, 2021 at 9:32 AM Stephen Goranson <goranson at duke.edu> wrote:
> Apologies to those not interested in this quotation hunt.
> But, according to New York Times of March 16, 1975, Section XX, Page 11:
> Hilda Morhart, one of two old‐time Zoarites still living, sits in her
> warm, cluttered parlor reading through memoirs and notes on conversations
> she has had with other old‐timers about the Zoar community. She has
> published book of Zoar lore, “The Zoar Story,” and knows as much about
> those mysteriously different years as anyone today. “The spirit was
> different then,” she says. “Those were very humble people back there. They
> were very close to their religion.”
> So, the quote, *if* accurately remembered, as a deathbed mention of the
> last living member, would be after that date (maybe from the other
> survivor, unless Hilda Dischinger Morhart [for whom I have not yet found an
> obituary] had a big change of heart) and before circa 1985.
> S. Goranson
> From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of
> Stephen Goranson <goranson at DUKE.EDU>
> Sent: Tuesday, June 1, 2021 6:42 AM
> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Subject: Re: Zoar survivor quote—Errol Morris versions
> Thanks to Garson!
> I actually had The New Yorker piece in my notes, but forgot to include it.
> Yes, Feb. 6, 1989 "Predilictions" by Mark Singer (intermittent) pages
> 39-72, here page 72. I missed the 1995 book. (At NYT, not sure if comments
> are allowed on the recent Morris article (the icon is there but empty): in
> this case, only for subscribers? I buy the Sunday, but get the rest via
> So, revised dates for the publication of the ex-Zoarite/Morris
> quote--assuming it, or something similar, exists--now probably well after
> 1930 and probably before 1985-ish.
> Stephen Goranson
> Here's Ben's Wall St. J. column on hijacking (May 28):
> I added at amazon a brief review of Ralph Keyes, The Hidden History of
> Coined Words, which I bought (published March 1, 2021).
> From: ADSGarson O'Toole <adsgarsonotoole at gmail.com>
> Sent: Monday, May 31, 2021 12:48 PM
> To: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at listserv.uga.edu>; Stephen Goranson <
> goranson at duke.edu>
> Subject: Re: Zoar survivor quote—Errol Morris versions
> There is a match for the quotation in a 1995 book that contains a
> reprint of a profile of Errol Morris written by journalist Mark
> Singer. The reprint is from a collection titled "Mr. Personality" by
> Singer, but the original source is "The New Yorker".
> The website of "The New Yorker" indicates that the profile of Errol
> Morris by Mark Singer was titled "Predilections" and it appeared in
> the February 6, 1989 issue.
> I have not verified the text in "The New Yorker". I currently do not
> have access to "The New Yorker", but some other list member might be
> able to check it. Of course, this is not direct evidence that the
> quotation was employed by a Zoarite. It simply suggests that Errol
> Morris was propagating it circa 1989.
> Year: 1995
> Book: Literary Journalism: A New Collection of the Best American Nonfiction
> Editors: Norman Sims, Mark Kramer
> Publisher: Ballantine Books, New York
> Quote Page 295
> Database: Google Books Preview
> Bibliographical Note: “Errol Morris: Predilections" from Mr.
> Personality by Mark Singer. Copyright © 1989 by Mark Singer. Reprinted
> by permission. Originally in The New Yorker.
> [Begin excerpt]
> “My favorite line in Dr. Death, I think, will be when the last living
> Zoarite is quoted as saying, 'Think of it—all those religions. They
> can't all be right. But they could all be wrong,” Morris said.
> . . .
> At the time this Profile was published in The New Yorker, in February
> 1989, a decision about Randall Adams' legal fate, although imminent .
> . .
> [End excerpt]
> Date: February 6, 1989 (print edition)
> Periodical: The New Yorker
> Article: Profiles - Predilections
> Comment: Profile of moviemaker Errol Morris by Mark Singer
> Full access to this article is paywalled. I have not verified the
> presence of the quotation in this article
> On Mon, May 31, 2021 at 8:27 AM Stephen Goranson <goranson at duke.edu>
> > In the NY Times, May 28, 2021, ‘Errol Morris: What We Believe About
> > “Years ago I read an anecdote about the 19th-century utopian community
> of Zoar [in Ohio]. It was mentioned in passing in a book about forensic
> psychiatry. And try as I might, I haven’t been able to source it since. The
> story concerns the last living inhabitant of Zoar, a woman who on her
> deathbed said, “Think of all those religions. They can’t all be right. But
> they can all be wrong.”
> > So, what is the quote, or was he wrong? Other remembrances from him
> (check accuracy):
> > 1997 Filmmaker v6 p50 [my elipses]:
> > “Years ago when I was reading all sorts of different things, I stumbled
> across a story about this religion. ….last living inhabitant of Zoar on his
> [sic, though maybe a transcription error or typo for her?] deathbed…”All
> those religions. They can’t all be right. But they could all be wrong.”
> > 2003:
> > “…in her nineties on her deathbed. Think of it. All those religions.
> They can’t all be right. But they can all be wrong.”
> > 2008 (?):
> > “But I found in an archive in Ohio a record of the last inhabitant of
> Zoar…Think of it. All those religions? They can’t all be right. But they
> can all be wrong.”
> > Tentatively, I assume there was some such quote, but, if in a regular
> published or widely-known book of forensic psychology, it seems as if it
> would have turned up by now. Reportedly, Morris considered making a film
> about Zoar, so archival text is not out of the question, though, say, the
> Ohio Historical Society archive could be quoted in a book. In 1930, a Mrs.
> Beiter [former family name of members was Beuter, Mary [Mary Beiter Carr?
> 1890-1969?] or Alameda, or her relatives] was said to be the oldest
> survivor of Zoar community. That’s not the same as the last member, but
> suggests a post-1930 date for the statement, the death, and the
> publication. Yet before about 1992?
> > Stephen Goranson
> > http://people.duke.edu/~goranson/
> > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > The American Dialect Society -
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