Alefounder in Poetry and Prose


The American poetess Barbara Howes (b. 1914) wrote "At Mrs Alefounder's", a poem about the Alefounder bird/wildlife sanctuary, Tobago, West Indies. This was published in The Blue Garden (1972) and later in Collected Poems, 1945-1990 (1995), pp 98-99.

Fictional uses of the name

Robert Palfrey Utter (1875-1936) wrote the short story "My Neighbor and Myself", published in Harper's Monthly Magazine, March 1921, pp 528-530 and in Pearls & Pepper (1924), pp 48-53. This tells of a man who moves into a small community and is subjected to a few practical jokes and tall tales by his neighbours. One such involved the right of way along an adjacent path which a previous owner of his house, Ruel Alefounder, had refused to buy.
Robert Palfrey Utter was a Professor of English at the University of California; where he came across the name I have no idea.

The adventure novel "Tell it on the drums" by Robert Wilson Krepps, published in South Africa, 1955, and by Hale in 1957, is set in South Africa in the 1880s. "Alefounder" has charge of some diamonds, property of Cecil Rhodes. These are stolen by a gang of thieves who travel north from Kimberley, fall out and eventually meet their deaths. Again, I have not discovered how or where the author learnt of the name.

William Alefounder is a character in "Kill-Devil and Water", a novel by Andrew Pepper (2008), set in 1840. The hero, Pyke, travels to the sugar plantations of Jamaica. Maybe Andrew Pepper took the Alefounder surname from the real Alefounder family who owned the former sugar plantation in Tobago.

An Alefounder family appears in The Midsummer Rose (2004) by Kate Sedley, which is said to be a kind of detective novel set in the time of Edward IV (15th century).

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Last updated 14 July 2015 by Peter Alefounder

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