July 1925

Ruth 7/11/25 After John’s first trip to the farm

Do you want me to tell you what a thrill is? I know a girl who got the biggest one of her lif one night when “prince charming” gave her her first kiss. A thrill makes your nerves tingle and your heart beat fast. Glad you got back safely – I wanted you to stay but was glad you stuck to your plan. After all our discussions about the students at NCC Ralph and I both decided that of the things we like most about you is your “stick-to-a-tiveness”.
You know how families like to tease. Mine teases me bout my “railroad Paddy” but I don’t care because I know there is more to you than that.
I am confident that you will choose wisely in you life work and will stay by it until you do success. In a way it surprises me that you are the boy that you are when you tell me what your family is like. Maybe you are mistaken and you were just depressed. I’m glad you like my home. Some of my girlfriends are getting their hair bobbed. Hope Mother doesn’t get hers done. Has your mom gotten hers done?

Ruth 7/18/25

We went to Niobrara and mosquitos almost ate us up. Weighed 132 before going and 131 when I returned. Mosquitos and heat (100) – was never so miserable those 2 days but did have fun too.
My advice to you would be to go on to school at present. Of course I have had no real experience and am not in a position to give advice but thats what I think.
Ralph and I seem to be closer than ever before this summer. I don’t believe Marie understands him properly. I can’t talk to Mother. From her talk she must think that I am going to school to get a fiancé but I intend to show her that she’s all wrong. OK, if one should happen along the way that would only be secondary but I have something else to do before I get involved with a fiancé. So that means I’ll have to go easy on the sentimental side of life but I find that many times that things are easier said than done.

Ruth 7/24/25

The threshers have been here for 2 days. My its awful. We had them for 3 meals. Men eat such a lot! They are a queer lot altho interesting to watch – at the table especially. Mother and I exchange our observations while we eat after they have left. Mother decided she’d take a vacation after they left and lay around and read. I’m Learning to sew. Aren’t you glad you don’t have to think about your school clothes? I’ll have to confess I have a shocking weakness for pretty clothes. It almost amounts to a passion.

The threshers

The threshers

Johnny, I would like very much to read those pamphlets you were speaking of. Not that I think it would change my viewpoint but just want to know what someone else thinks. I shall always maintain that young people should not indulge until after they are engaged at least. You’ll probably say “old girl you better practice what you preach” and I’d say amen but do you know I can’t explain why but when I am with you sometimes I want it hot and I most generally get it too but not always. I think I’d better stop right here until morning and maybe by that time I’ll calm down a little.
I’ve calmed and now I think I can talk sanely. What I want to know is why don’t they (our parents) tell us more about life? All that I have learned about men and all that is involved I have learned from other girls. Oh well, why worry. Do you realize how much I’ve been using that expression lately? That seems to be my attitude toward everything lately.

Mom 7/24/25
I can’t seem to learn to like to cook but I should hope I would sometime being as how we’re engaged and everything. Ha! Had you forgotten about that? Oh yes, and I was supposed to ask you once in awhile how much money you had saved.

I have been going out with Floyd – I don’t want to but can’t be mean to him.  Mother says I ought to tell Floyd that the reasonI seem so different is because I’m engaged. Perhaps he’d leave me alone if I would but I shouldn’t talk like that when it is all a joke.

This is the actual letter Floyd wrote when Mom dumped him!  He says:

Letter from Floyd pg 1Floyd letter pg 2

Dear Ruth – I think maybe it is my place to make the apology instead of you.  You know that I wrote last to you when you were still at school and as I didn’t receive an answer from you before you came home, or after, I didn’t know just what to think.  Then too I heard that you were going with another person so I just decided that you didn’t care to write.  Maybe I am to faint hearted but you know, Ruth, that a fellow hates to be a pest by hanging around where they are not exactly welcome.  I realize now that I was very abrupt the other night and maybe very rude but I was very tired that night and if it hadn’t been the occasion that it was I wouldn’t have been there at all.  I would of done justice to myself and everyone else if I had stayed home.  ruth, I surely would like to have your companionship the rest of the summer if you think my company would be worth while.  You know that I have always had as much respect for you as I have for one of my sisters and I enjoy your company more than any one elses.  Would it be all right if I came down tonight and if you find it impossible for any reason it will be all right anyway because I will always regard you as my friend.  As ever, Floyd


John 7/6/25

On the way home from the farm visit Harold and I had an adventure. It started to rain so they we put the side curtains up. When we were at Clarks, NE it was raining quite heavily, nevertheless we proceeded. We just got off the pavement and I was trying to sleep when I felt the car skidding. This woke me in time to see us heading for a ditch. The car upset but the crank kept it from going all the way over. We tried to find the night police at Clarks but could not. We couldn’t find a soul nor a telephone. Finally we found the “cop” and I happened to know him. He woke a garage man who came and pulled us out. The only damage was a dent fender and a flat tire. They proceeded and arrived at Central City at 3:42; the train was due at 3:40. The train was so uncomfortable I couldn’t sleep. Got home at 6 am and lay on the couch till 7:00 then had to go to work Sure glad when 5:00 quitting time came around. I took my brothers to the river to swim and wrote a letter from the river bank.

John 7/9/25

Lots going on in Shelton. A man got hit by a fast train right in front of our house. Sure glad I was at the farm and missed seeing it. I heard that my mother’s sister, a flapper girl of 16, ran away from home and was married to a boy of 22. Just imagine getting married at 16. My aunt can’t cook a meal if she had to and further more she has only been in courtship 2.5 months. Those kids getting married would be worse than us getting married because you can make bread.
I still keep pondering over that old problem of my life’s work. In the past 2 days I have summed up the various occupations which appeal to me: mission work, traveling YMCA work, farming, ministry, school teaching and on or two others. I wish someone would tell me what I’m suited for.
Harold sure missed leaving Josie and said he felt sorry for you kids living out there in “the jungles” and having no place to go. But I do not feel that way. I imagine I would enjoy living in a community like you do.

John 7/13/25

I didn’t get a letter for a few days and begin thinking you didn’t like me anymore. I could’t bear to think of going back to NCC if you don’t care for me anymore. A letter came and I was the happiest boy in the world. After reading your definition of a thrill I realize I have had several thrills myself. I once knew a boy whose nerves tingled and heart beat faster every time he kissed a certain girl.
It certainly has been hot. The railroad is the next to the hottest place I know of. I sweat so much that when my face ad clothes dry off they are covered with salt. It looks like someone threw sand on me. There is no danger of me spoiling, is there?
When you think about how awful cooking is just think that some day you will have to cook for your own family, won’t that be fun?

Railroad work crew

Railroad work crew

John 7/19/25

You told me not to say “monkeying around” or “monkey business” and the such. Did you know that when I was speaking of that I was making mention of our ancestors? That is the theory of Darrow in the TN trial case. It has sure been interesting to read the proceeding of that trial. I have thought a great deal over the subject of evolution since this trial started. Of course I don’t believe in it but it stimulates ones mind. I have been suffering with an infected wisdom tooth.


One of the guys on the RR gave me several pamphlets which I read instead of going to church. He also gave me an address where I might write for more material which I did yesterday. After reading the pamphlets, which were issued by the US government, I have been thinking more strongly than ever before over that old problem of ours, which is whether kissing should be indulged in by US and company. As yet I am not ready to say that it should not but upon receiving this new information which I sent for which deals more directly with the subject I might change my mind. I hope to be informed this summer whether kissing is more detrimental than helpful.

You telling me about Ralph and your talks  makes me think of by gone days ( or rather nights) when Ralph and I would talk over our situations and problems. I realize how you can appreciate talking with him. Often I wish I had someone to talk to. Mother and Father don’t appreciate my feelings. The other morning I was provoked. I told Mother that I would have liked to see her and dad before they were married. I sure hope I will be able to appreciate my children’s feelings, it the time ever comes, better than Mother and Dad do.

John 7/27/25

I just finished putting two gas savers on the car. After finishing the process I measured my gasoline and then drove up town. After returning home I again measured my gas and I had half a gal more than when I started. My boss and I have been overhauling the Ford and we now have enough parts left over to make another Ford.


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