A Collar of Jewels by Pamela Pope
My novel A Collar of Jewels is initially based on a true story once told to me by a very elderly friend. Just prior to the start of the 20th Century her aunt left Southampton for New York to start a new life with her husband and young baby, but when they arrived her husband left her sitting on the quayside with the luggage and returned to England without her. His wife stayed in America where in spite of everything their son grew up to be a successful businessman. I reversed this situation, leaving Ellie and her son William stranded in Southampton.
Ellie’s story evolved when I discovered a book about the history of the American Trades Unions and was fascinated by accounts of the national railroad strike resulting from a bitter dispute by men working for George Pullman, inventor of the Pullman railway carriages which today are still synonymous with luxurious travel. The strike became a setting in which Max, Ellie’s husband, was dangerously involved and her own life changed forever.
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