McGuire is listed as a consultant to the Florida Federal Writers' Project in the back of Florida: A Guide to the Southernmost State, in his capacity as editor of the Florida Review. As far as I can tell, McGuire must have been completing his masters degree at the University of Florida at Gainesville at the time. A masters thesis, dated 1939, appears in the record by a William Joseph McGuire, born in 1917, entitled A Study of Florida Cracker Dialect Based Chiefly on the Prose Works of Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings. This must be the same Will McGuire who wrote the "Note on Jook" article; he seems to have had an avid interest in Florida folkculture. This would make him only 21 at the time that he served as an (white) expert on the folk history of jook joints for the Federal Writers' Project. The Florida Review was an official student publication of the University of Florida and a member of the National Scholastic Press Association. Founded in 1931 by a literary society at the University, it was published quarterly. In the issue that "Note on Jook" appears, an article titled "Color Added" by Stetson Kennedy also appears, under the "stories" section. Kennedy, a former student at the University, had left to work for the Florida Federal Writers' Project in 1937; he became a (white) editor of folklore, oral history and ethnic studies (McDonogh xix). Like McGuire, he was just over 20; most likely, it is through this connection that McGuire became associated with the FWP. (see American Memory)
Interestingly enough, the published version of Will McGuire's "Note on Jook" doesn't contain any reference to such a murder case in the prairie cattle country of Florida, though it does address how the term jook came to be discussed in the state Supreme Court. It is possible, since "Note on Jook" appeared in the Spring 1938 issue of the Florida Review, and the Florida state guide was first published in November 1939, that McGuire showed the writers working on the section on jook joints an early version of his article, and by the time it went to press without the section, it was too late to revise the reference in the guidebook.
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