The Great Hitty Bride Necklace Discussion

Have we discovered a discrepancy?
Did the publishers make a mistake?
Did Dorothy Lathrop miss a continuity point?
Did Rachel Field change some of the story after the drawing was done?
Or--did the Sisters Larraby add their own necklace?

You Decide!

From Hitty, Her First Hundred Years--Rachel Field
Illustration--Dorothy Lathrop

Notice that Lathrop has drawn a necklace on Hitty.

Our Premise: Dorothy Lathrop inadvertently drew the necklace on the Hitty Bride, although it should not have been there.

Our Arguments for:

1. In chapter 14, in the beginning, Hitty says her coral necklace was scattered to the four corners of the hayloft.

2. In the picture Dorothy drew of her in her bridal finery (pg 163), she is wearing a necklace! It doesn't say the sisters gave her a necklace.

3. In the remaining pictures in the book, she doesn't have one. (So, if the sisters gave her a necklace, why is it gone?)

4. Although this is a b/w drawing, all of the other b/w drawings showing the necklace are not shaded or colored to suggest coral.

Our Proofs for:

1. Page 151: a b/w drawing of the mice scattering her coral necklace.

2. Page 154: "...and my coral beads broken and scattered to the four corners of the hayloft."


Our Arguments against:

1. The drawing is in black and white, and we cannot tell if this is a coral necklace or any other bead.

2. The sisters could have made a necklace for her, as brides often wear pearls.

3. Field could simply have cut the part about the sisters making a necklace.

Our Proofs Against:

1. The illustration shows a necklace.


OK! It's up to you--send us your comments for or against, and we will add them to the page! What do you think? Did we discover a discrepancy?

Are you interested in learning more about the book? You can check out our Book Discussion pages.


Reader's Comments:

When our group discussed this 'irregularity' we came up with no exclamation. All I can say is that a very high percentage of books have 'errors' that escape even the proof reader.
Before my interest in Hitty, I was into reading everything I could get my hands on about impressionist art. I bought over a period of several years, 63 books and there is an error in almost all of them!!!!! Some glaring, some just a misspelled word! I suspect that given perhaps a 'short' time frame and the excitement with wanting to get the public to know Hitty, it was just not caught. These two ladies were certainly excited about Hitty and I know myself, when I do something with Hitty, I can hardly wait to share it with someone. Ahem, wonder if that lady that was Dorothy's relative who talked about her at Stockbridge remembers hearing anything about it - like the two discovered it after the book was published. ????---


I think that the sisters made her a pearl necklace that probably got destroyed when the rest of her wedding finery got destroyed. My best guess is that the thread would have been finer and would have rotted in the muddy water and then just disintegrated. Anyway, that's my theory.--Michelle


I just assumed that the Larraby sisters made her a pearl necklace to go with her wedding dress.--Margie


I think if Field wanted the sisters to make a necklace to go with the wedding gown she would have made a point of saying something about it because the corals are such an important part throughout the book thus far. I think it was just a mistake and she missed it when the book was being put together with the pictures.-- Dawn


I believe the sisters Larraby gave Hitty a pearl necklace. --Pauline


My opinion is that Fields forgot to write in a part where the ladies made her a necklace and yet, it did indeed rot in the river and scattered. Therefore the new owners would not have know she wore a coral necklace much less any jewelry at all. At least now we know and use the magical elastic thread to change necklaces if so want to. If in fact the proof reading was hurried, could it have been done by another person?--Teddie


It [the necklace] was "borrowed"! That is why it was gone in the remaining illust. The bridal tradition being, "Something old, something new, Something borrowed, something blue.
Just my 2 cents! ;o)--
Kristine H


Pearls dissolve in certain types of water.-- Anne in VA