Several years ago I read a column by Joseph Sobran. I could tell he was really upset when he explained that the man he had thought was Shakespeare wasn’t from Stratford on Avon. He was convinced that the real writer of the works was Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl of Oxford. Sobran had read Ogburn’s book and was sadly proclaiming de Vere was the true author of Shakespeare.
Sobran’s column aroused my curiosity, but it was a couple of years later when I had time to look up “The Mysterious William Shakespeare” in our branch library.
The book was waiting for me on the shelf along with William Plumer Fowler’s study, “Shakespeare, Revealed in Oxford’s Letters.”
Things moved quickly after that. I became a member of the Society and in 1995 invited Charles Beauclerk (then Lord Burford) to give a de Vere lecture at the Indianapolis Contemporary Club. I attended the 19th Annual Conference in Greensboro, North Carolina. I enjoyed meeting the members and met even more Oxfordians at the San Francisco one. I was fortunately in Washington, D.C., for an Oxfordian Annual meeting when Joseph Sobran was there and I told him how much his column had influenced me to become an Oxfordian.
My quest for the history of Edward de Vere as the real Shakespeare has held me captive with the superlative research which has been done and is being done by so many in the field.
What has been uncovered is just astounding. What a wild, exciting adventure to witness in my retirement. The men and women who are working to change a 400-year-old icon of historical significance find it a hard nut to crack, but I am impressed to see so many of the walls around it starting to crumble.
— Mary Jane Meeker
“How I Became an Oxfordian” is edited by Bob Meyers. You may submit your essay on this topic (500 words or less in an editable format such as MS Word), along with a digital photo of yourself, to:firstname.lastname@example.org. Also include a sentence about yourself (e.g., “John J. Smith is a businessman in San Francisco.”).
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