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Ruby Ogletree knew something was wrong when a typewritten letter arrived from her son, Artemus, in the spring of 1935. The teenager didnt know how to use a typewriter, as far as she knew; all of his previous letters, mailed home to Birmingham, Alabama, and written with the nonchalant cadence of a young man out seeing the country, were in longhand. The tone in the new letter wasnt quite right, eitherwhoever wrote it used slang that didn't sound like her son.