Papa Didn't Preach

Words of Wisdom for Daddy’s Girls

By turns amusing and insightful, Papa Didn’t Preach captures the life lessons Vasilisa C. Hamilton learned from her Dad, the late Merritt Hamilton. Hamilton, son of the late Lillian T. and Solomon P. Hamilton Jr., died in 1999 at age 73 after working a full day on the farm he loved. Hamilton’s Farm Fresh Produce, the business he owned and operated with his wife, Colleton County native Alneatha Salley, was well known throughout the South Carolina Lowcountry and the Central Savannah River Area. Their agribusiness was profiled in a 1995 edition of Carolina Farmer magazine.

Papa Didn’t Preach captures the warmth and humor of a father who, according to his daughter, was a giant in her eyes and in the eyes of everyone who knew him.

The two exchanged jokes, newspaper clippings, old and new music, and had some of their best conversations while riding around Point South - Pocotaligo, Buckfield and Mackay’s Point plantations, Sugar Loaf Island, and Yemassee in the Ford pickup he used on his farm, or in her two-toned Mercury Lynx.

The life lessons in the book are some of the ideas Merritt cultivated in Vasilisa. He was her best friend and the only man who never disappointed her. Writing the book was therapeutic because it made Vasilisa realize that her Dad is tilling the soil and keeping everyone in stitches in a much better place.

A book that only a simple farm girl from Pocotaligo could write, Papa Didn’t Preach is an American story first and foremost.