A Rose for Emily

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The mayor of Jefferson in the 1890s, Sartoris is a representative of the old genteel per-Civil War South (he was a Confederate Colonel in the war). Sartoris passed a racist law that forces black women in Jefferson to wear their aprons in public, and in 1894 he comes to the financially impoverished Miss Emily’s aid by excusing her from having to pay her taxes in Jefferson. The town authorities who succeed him with their “modern ideas” are frustrated by this arrangement with Miss Emily, but are unable to change it.
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Colonel Sartoris Character Timeline in A Rose for Emily

The timeline below shows where the character Colonel Sartoris appears in A Rose for Emily. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Section 1
The Post Civil-War South Theme Icon
Patriarchal Authority and Control Theme Icon
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...and cared for by the townspeople. In fact, in 1894, the then-mayor of Jefferson, Colonel Sartoris—who made it illegal for black women to go into the town streets without an apron... (full context)
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...subsequently sent a formal letter inviting her to the sheriff’s office, then a letter from the mayor himself. The mayor received a reply note from her explaining that she no longer went... (full context)
The Post Civil-War South Theme Icon
Tradition vs. Progress Theme Icon
Patriarchal Authority and Control Theme Icon
...deputation’s spokesman informed her that her taxes were due; but Miss Emily countered that Colonel Sartoris excused her from paying taxes long ago, and that the town’s authorities should speak to... (full context)
Section 4
The Post Civil-War South Theme Icon
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Patriarchal Authority and Control Theme Icon
Time and Narrative  Theme Icon
...was about forty and gave lessons in china-painting to the daughters and granddaughters of Colonel Sartoris’s contemporaries. This was also around the time that Sartoris had excused her from paying her... (full context)
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Gossip, Social Conventions, and Judgment Theme Icon
The narrator again recalls (as in Section 1 of the story) how the newer, post-Sartoris generation rose to power in town. The narrator also recalls how Miss Emily’s painting pupils... (full context)