As with so many things in Slantville, the town history is subject to interpretation. Slantville's citizens each possess an individual vision or slant on life, which is reflected in their interactions and opinions as well as in their work. The combined contributions of the residents produces a gloriously kaleidoscopic community worldview which is exciting and inspires citizens' creativity. However, this same rich melange, when applied to an attempt to establish facts about historical events, basically produces a lot of confusion.
We current members of the Slantville Historical Society are carrying on the Society's proud tradition of maintaining some semblance of order in the midst of this lush imaginative chaos. You will no doubt find other Slantvillians who will offer alternate and even contradictory versions of the events described below. Please feel free to enter fully into the spirit of our town, and appreciate them all.
Slantville is named for its Founder, Atticus Slant. The Slant family prided itself on being descended from Christopher Columbus, and when young Atticus began to feel hemmed in by the traditions of his home town he decided to emulate his ancestor and strike out for new territory. Given that Columbus had set off for India, Atticus (who did not have access to a queen's jewels) decided that he could carry on the family theme by heading for Indianapolis. Unfortunately he was no more successful than his forebear in reaching his stated goal, and for that reason no one, to this day, is quite sure where on earth Slantville is located.
Atticus (known to friends as Atta) and his young bride Ona, along with Ona's younger sister Ina Pigseye, set off with little other than their great hopes, natural talents, and determination. After long travel they happened on a lovely, rolling green valley, with nearby mountains, lakes, and streams. The countryside was uninhabited, with the sole exception of farmer O.B. Leek. The Slants recognized in him a kindred spirit, and with his blessing they decided that this would be their new home.
The three weary travelers were happy to end their search. Ina was particularly ready to settle down. In truth she was somewhat lonely, and she fantasized that farmer Leek might make her his bride. For his part, O.B. Leek's attraction to Ina was one reason he welcomed the visitors to his valley. However, O.B. Leek could never quite bring himself to state his intentions to Ina, and she in turn failed to recognize the various cabbages which he brought her for the love offerings that they were. It was on one of her solitary walks in the hills that Ina stumbled upon the nearby village of Snitville. Finding the town temperament simpatico, she spent more time there and began keeping company with mayor Bodacious ("Big") Snit.
Over the years, as first the Askews and later other settlers stumbled onto Slantville, the town has grown and prospered. The populace tends to be easy-going and the general philosophy is "live and let live." On those rare occasions when there has been any community friction, the ties which Ina's marriage established with Snitville have been invaluable in providing a place for dissatisfied Slantvillians to go to blow off steam.
One of the few municipal disagreements which was severe enough to gain a place in our Brief Official Slantville History resulted from the attempt to agree on a town motto. There were vocal minorities (many consisting of one person) promoting such patriotic slogans as "BETTER SLANT THAN RANT," "SLANTVILLE - MY CITY, RIGHT OR LEFT," and "NORMAN ROCKWELL wishes he WAS BORN HERE."
Numerous unflattering cartoons of opponents appeared in the Daily Slant, and a free-for-all fistfight broke out after one sloganist called the other "derivative" and was answered with a vicious accusation of being "trendy." To stop the commotion the sheriff had to fire a shot in the air, killing a hapless buzzard which had been waiting to pose for a crawling-across-the-desert cartoon. This tragic event shocked the population to their senses, and they renewed their commitment to enjoying their differences.
The town motto which was finally selected probably comes as close as anything ever will to expressing the sentiment which unites the views of the disparate citizens of Slantville -
ONE PICTURE IS WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS Compiled by Jane Barr
Founding Member, Slantville Historical Society