Thursday, February 23, 2012

Two Years: A Look Back

Oh, my! An e-mail regarding the name of this web domain——and the necessity of paying for it for another year reminds me that I've been trying to answer the question, "Who is George Mills?" for exactly two years now. The website's name indicates how little I knew about Mills when I started: It would be more correctly titled "Who was George Mills?"

Things around here started slowly, but while ordering my first Mills novel, King Willow, I received information from Heather at Peakirk Books in Norfolk based on a biographical sketch in text on British children's authors. I placed that order and purchased this domain name on the same day.

After purchasing my second Mills book, Meredith & Co., the preface led me to contact a former employer of George, Windlesham School in Brighton. Dr. Tom Houston, an alumnus, provided a wealth of information which included the fact that Mills had attended Oxford.

Annabel Peacock, then in the archives at Oxford, completely cracked open the metaphorical nut of this research by providing detailed and accurate information regarding Mills, his father, and his grandfather, also Oxon alumni.

That led to connections with Harrow, the Eastbourne Local History Association, Christ Church, the Plantagenet Blood Royal, London, Kensington, Lady Dorothy Mills, the Beauclerks, the Walpoles, the Aclands, the Hobart-Hampdens, the Wingates, the Ramsays, American multimillionaire D. C. Corbin, Budleigh Salterton, Cornwall, Lincolnshire, New Zealand, South America, Africa, the Middle East, Portslade, Meads, Brighton, Spokane, New York, France, China, India, and the Bosphorous.

And all that was within the first 20 days of writing this blog!

Since then I've met many fascinating and wonderful people and learned a great deal about history, geography, literature, different cultures, and, quite frankly, about myself.

Right now, I still have to present Hugh Chittenden's speech and the events of the day during the Newlands School hundredth anniversary celebration and wrap up our examination of the Chittendens. There are also a few cricket photographs with players that want identification.

Other than that, however, there is not much new regarding George Mills and the vast segments of his life for which we cannot account.

It has been two marvelous years for me, but I still have a feeling that it isn't over yet, and I implore everyone, but most especially George's closest family members, to contact me if you can add anything to what we know about this fascinating man, his life, and his times.

Thank you once again to everyone who has gone out of his or her way to help me tilt at this windmill here. I am forever in your debt.

Cheers! As of this moment 34,419 visitors have popped in for a visit, so here's to many more visitors, and many more years of learning about George Mills.

1 comment:

  1. Sam, I wished you'd put a link to your very first post on the home page, so readers could start at the beginning of your story.