The thought that you might get scarlet fever is too horrible. I’ll dismiss it as an April fool joke until I know that you have it. Nothing must mar the happiness of these next few weeks. You ask whether I have forgotten that only two months remain. Why, Ruthie, that is my foremost thought these days. It is easy for me to float away in dreams of you. It is perhaps a good thing that we have some plans to work out; they tend to keep us down to earth.
What Mary said about living expenses is no doubt true. Guy said that it cost him and Ella about one hundred dollars a month for living expenses. They had two rooms in an apartment; they paid $40 for these. I doubt that two could live here on much less than sixty or seventy-five dollars a month. Dr. Hodgkin said that they asked him $250/mo rent on a house near where Pendle Hill will be located – not an extravagant house either. It is probably fortunate that we would have living quarters provided.
Congratulations to Mary. It would be splendid if she could take the opportunity offered her. She would be a comfort to you when you begin to feel homesick, if we would be there. What is Nebraska going to do if all of us young Friends lave? We’ll have to return and show these people a thing or two someday. As you suggested I hope we can make our home here. I love this old state and someday hope to do great things for it.
Twenty dollars an hour! Didn’t you nearly faint? I hope you can study further and I’m very sue you can get work as cheaply there as you can in Sioux City. Probably they have a good conservatory at the University of Pennsylvania.
Miss Thornburg informed me that Penn State and the Univ. of Penn are two different institutions. They are not are distant, however; perhaps 50 mi or so. I learned that largely thru the efforts of Mr. Peters and another Quaker at Penn State compulsory military training was abolished there. He has some “stuff” in him which promises him success. Perhaps I shouldn’t say these nice things but I don’t worry now.
How I wish I had definite word from Philadelphia! I shall relay all news to you immediately.
How I wish I could settle some of your anxieties! But at this writing I know no more than I did last Tuesday. Each day I expect definite work. I trust in an affirmative answer and don’t worry beyond that because it dos no use. If we should be disappointed then we shall need to do the next best thing.
Your wish shall be granted if we begin our work this summer before returning from Toronto. I know how you must feel at the thought of leaving home even with me – who is such an uncertain quantity. When I think of being so far away I too feel badly but it is a thing we must do – better now than when our folks are older. The question in my mind is where we should spend the few days between our marriage and our departure to Toronto. Have you any place to suggest?
Mumps and measles are our delight yet these are preferable to scarlet fever. It would be unfortunate to close school this late in the season. Do I remember your measles? Say, I surely do! You have never seen me in quite so terrible a condition, have you? May you never!
Perhaps one reason for my happiness is the letter which I am enclosing. Please keep this letter for future reference. I am expecting word from Miss Lang tomorrow or the next day. The way Bess speaks it seems quite certain that we shall go to Philadelphia. All my plans are centered on that fact now. In my letter to Miss Lang I asked her to let us know when we might begin our work and how long we could expect it to last. Upon her decision or report rests the solution of the other problem of your request. That is, whether or not we might return to your home before we leave for the east to remain permanently. In my letter I suggested that if our work could begin in July or August it would save us considerable driving and expenses. So if that request is granted we will take a short trip upon the day of our marriage and then return for a visit of a day or two with you folks and mine.
For some reason I dislike to have everybody letting me know how much they need me here and how badly they dislike seeing me go. I haven’t told them definitely, but they know it is unlikely that I will return. It doesn’t make me blue or sad only I just don’t love their flattering – of course, though, I’m glad they feel like they do.
It was encouraging to note Miss Lang’s satisfaction over the fact that you have musical ability. It will give you a chance to do the work you love to do. In fact, the most attractive aspect of the work, after teaching school, is to feel that our time won’t be circumscribed so entirely by routine. Another encouraging thing is the thought that our financial worries will be greatly minimized. I won’t know how to spend or handle money, I fear, when we get situated. That is if creditors won’t take every cent we make. I hope we can get a sum accumulated so that our future will be freer.
I pulled a good one on Simmons the other day – she’s an old maid, you know. A robber was holding up a train; he announced that he would rob all the men and kiss all the ladies. He proceeded to rob one of the men in the lower berth. The man, rather bravely and chivalrously said, “You can rob us but don’t you touch the women”. An old maid in an upper birth peeked out between the curtains and said to the robbed man, “You shut up, he’s robbing this train!”. Simmons about choked on her food.
At home Friday night I told the kiddies stories. Chester wouldn’t go to bed but stared wide eyed s I related them. Katherine was sick so she missed the fun. She has a birthday the 15th of this month. That reminds me that you are getting older too. Let me see, 22. Do you feel that old, honey? That will mean 22 kisses, won’t it?
I’m feeling happy and buoyant because I have just returned from the grand climax of our series of business meetings of which I was chairman. Speaking or doing such things, if I succeed, gives me an incomparable feeling. How pleasant would it be to have you here to talk to and love. My mind always turns to such a thought when I’m happy
Surely I will get a letter from Miss Lang. Each time I go to the post office I expect it but thus far none has come. I feel almost certain about our going to Philadelphia but there is nothing like having definite assurance.
It will be fortunate to be able to see Ralph at Easter time. Bless his heart, I long to visit with him. We can share such personal affairs with each other. What suggestions did he make to you? I’m all curious.
Now who is fortunate and deserving of congratulations? It will be splendid for you to have the honor of receiving the trip to Lincoln, if so it be. Have you definitely planned the time following the dismissal of you school? What plans you make will affect mine in a measure. I want to work if possible following the time my school is over. Perhaps I can get in a couple of weeks of soliciting before June 10.
I heard from Miss Lang, but her letter wasn’t as clear and definite as I wanted for some reason or another. She did write more about our duties. Mine will be largely athletic and club management while yours will be club work, dancing, dramatics and music. She state that my qualifications were such as to be satisfactory for the work and intimated that we are both hired. She didn’t state anything about our salaried, the decision of the board, nor did she reply to my inquiry about what things we shall need to furnish for our “home”. I take it that she understands that Bess told us about these things.
She said our work will begin on the first of September (good!). If we choose to stay east we can occupy our place at the cottage by the 15th of July and each of us pay $1/day for board and room until September. The question now is whether or to we should return immediately from Toronto and go back to Philadelphia about the middle of August. Thus we would have a month and a half to spend I Nebraska. What would we do is the next question. I suppose I should solicit students and I would really like to if you would be happy. When I go to Central this week I’ll talk over campaigning with Guy and see what arrangements can be made. Last year Guy took the territory near home while I took that away. We might be able to switch this year so that I could be with you. It would pay us financially to return to Nebraska, I believe.
Nearly a fifth of the students are out with the measles and there is talk of closing the schools. I hope they don’t but maybe it can’t be helped.
Mother and Harold came for a visit. Mother had had five teeth pulled and some more must come out soon so she isn’t in the best of health. She hates to think of us going so far away as no doubt your mother does.
As I wrote the date above I beamed very conscious of the fact that only two months separate us. I have to count the weeks over and over to make myself believe that it isn’t a dream. It will be such fun to work out everything with you and to tell you about everything that happens during the day. We can do so many interesting things when we are together in the east. I expect this next year to open up better opportunities for the future just as this one has.
Isn’t it strange how our thoughts have changed over a period of time. Thoughts of doing other than teaching together next year didn’t enter my mind until one day I got a letter from Bess telling of her new work and some of the opportunities for Young Friends Rather accidentally I wrote to her and look what has come from it all. God is very gracious to us when we trust him to help in our needs He has never failed me; would that my record were as true!
At Hi Y Dr. Steward spoke. He told us about the Ozark Mountains and their beauties and people. Really he is a wonderful man; one whom I am very grateful to for many things. It has been a very great fortune to know him. Ministers such a he aren’t found everywhere.
Material about the conference is beginning to come to me and I’m anxious to assimilate it.
Spring doesn’t seem to have a good effect on you. I recall that last spring your state of life was very much like that your letter represented that came this morning. It hurts me to know that you feel so badly about our proposed plans though I know why it is. It makes me feel guilty and also that you are reluctant to go with me. Because I love you so much I want to make you happy but apparently I have failed in making our plans to do it. However I think that unless your homesickness is too serious we can be very happy in our work at Philadelphia. Believe me if I thought we wouldn’t be happy we wouldn’t be going. Perhaps you were in one of your valleys or depressions as you wrote. Maybe you need me to come and see you.
Congratulations on your election to go to Lincoln. You will have a good time, I know. Ralph will certainly enjoy having you visit him. Your selection as the one to achieve such an honor makes me proud of you.
Mr. and Mrs. Carrel and others of your friends at Central send you their greetings. They all think that we will very happy in Philadelphia.
In talking with Guy I asked his advice concerning whether or not we should return to Nebraska after the conference and he said he thought it would pay us financially to do so. That may make it easier for you because if we return we can spend about a week at least at your hoe before we go to Philadelphia. Would you like that? Of course you would. I’ll work campaigning for two weeks after school and then four weeks when we come back provided we can make arrangements that will be both satisfactory for you and me. Don’t you think it would be well for us to be in Philadelphia a few days early? Maybe if Mary decides to go to PA she might desire to go with us.
After we leave upon our wedding day I wish we might journey to some beautiful place for the night and then stop at some scenic spot for a day or two before going on. In the past we have never had privacy or freedom from duties but this is once that we shall. I told the Carrell’s how we wanted things as nearly as I could and they are some suggestions which I shall tell you about next week.
What suggestions do you have regarding the conference? While at Central I prepared a questionnaire to be sent to the young people of the yearly meeting to ascertain their thought I shall send you one as soon as they are printed. I can imagine us in Toronto. It will be such fun to think and plan with you. You’ll have to be my inspiration governor, advisor and critic. Of course all I need to do for you is to manage your finances, and be your lover. Other than that you will be free.
Dad just drove out and we went for a ride. They are planning on our wedding almost as much as we are. Strange isn’t it? Dad likes his new place quite well.
Your letter today had the same effect on my soul as the wonderful rain that has recently fallen has had on the earth. To be honest, your letter of last Thursday hurt me much but then I tried to realize that you would soon get over it. It occurred to me to ask, what if you really talked to me like that after we are married. I don’t think you will – when I detect such an attitude on your part I’ll strike out for the “tall timber” to return when you are feeling better. You won’t have to teach much longer. Do what you can and be happy.
Yes, we should have all our plans definitely made by Sunday and we shall, no doubt. No, your work isn’t so much like school, or at least I don’t think it will be. It will be more or less just living on the playgrounds and in the Guild lending a hand here and there in various activities. I hope further word comes about the work this week. Seems to me that things are awfully slow at the other end of the line. I’m all set for the joys of the summer and for the new work.
We’re working hard on our play though it is difficult to get all the pupils there at the same time to practice. I wish you could be here one week from Friday to see it. You remember it, don’t you? “The Eyes of Love”.
The roads were terrible, yes, worse than that but we got home at about 11:15. It was mud, water, holes, hills and what not. I was fortunate not to have any trouble of any kind in view of such conditions. I don’t regret at all thought that I went to see you, far from it!
Dearest, you are the world to me now, as I told you Sunday. Sometimes I’m inclined to such or fell “gloomy” but for the most part you mean happiness to me. I’ve turned over in my mind almost every point of conversation and plans that we had and talked about. The time that I spent listening to you play and sing was so pleasant. Often I want you to do that. It was then that your beauty and charm fascinated me. You didn’t realize what thoughts you were producing, did you.
Kenneth and Lois came over today and Kenneth arranged to take my job. It was good to have them visit here. Lois went to one of my classes and to dinner with me while Kenneth was interviewing the board. He should be able to handle this work very nicely. It seems strange to be leaving here after I have become so well acquainted yet I’m glad.
The more I think about it the more I become enthusiastic about spending the larger portion of our time at Niagara Falls. I plan to write soon for some travel guides that can inform us of the important and beautiful places that we may visit on a journey such as ours.
Sorry to hear of the new sickness in Allen. Especially with Helen in view of her plans for the next few weeks. She will miss the musical contest you said she was planning to attend, won’t she? Kruse is probably all excited about affairs, isn’t he?
Well done Ruthie! You obey well – now if I can only keep you so well trained. Did you send Miss Lang a picture of yourself? Now don’t tell me you forgot that. I know you can teach some music at Phil. but I have grave doubts about your work being limited to that. My guess is that you will have some girls clubs to organize and sponsor, some playground management, ad your music.
Catherine’s plans for you make me realize how soon June 10 will come and how nearly married we are. Last year I greatly enjoyed sharing in George’s experiences and I wished they too could have been mine. Now our time is here. I will be anxious to hear all about the shower and especially to see your (our) presents. They are for me too, are they not? If not I shall have to have a shower on myself.
Play, play, play, that’s about all I get done any more. Thank goodness that it will soon be all over with.
I fear Katherine has the mumps. She has been sick quite a bit recently and this will make her miss quite a bit of school None of the younger children have had the so it appears that we are in for a real siege at home, doesn’t it?
Just a few lines tonight in fulfillment of my promise to write after the play was over. Of course it would rain on this day of all day. Consequently our crowd was much smaller than it otherwise would have been. We took in $71.00 of which $40 will be clear. The play went off splendidly – the cast performed very well.
I wish I could be with you on your birthday. You know that my hopes are for you to have a happy day. I’m led to recall several other of your birthdays and they all bring happy remembrances. Especially do I remember the first birthday present I gave you, do you?
I hope you had a good time at the shower; I’m anxious to hear about it.
4/27/30 (includes play program)
Happy birthday Ruthie! May the little present tick happy thoughts of love to you. I didn’t select this particular present solely because I felt you needed a clock but because I thought it was clever and that you would enjoy such an article. How inadequately it expresses my love.
For some reason I have been thinking this week about your wedding dress. Have you decided upon it yet? Will it be white or pink or blue? In some ways I hope it will be white – you always look so nice in that . Either will be nice, I am sure. I shall be anxious to learn about what you decide. I bought the kind of tie yesterday you said you liked.
Since Friday about all I have heard is compliments on the play last Friday. Everyone talks about how good it was. Of course I am glad though the part that I played was very small. Now that the play is over I have some other things to look forward to. I have to give a toast at the Junior Senior Banquet next Thursday. Then I have to preach two sermons for Dr. Steward two weeks from today – Mother’s Day.
I hope you are listening just now to Clay Center. The music is wonderful. I hope there is a piano and a radio in our living quarters next year, don’t you? There may be.
One of the girls who lives near Monroe and whom I had such a time getting to go to Central last summer is going to give a talk at the high school tomorrow on what Central has meant to her. It is a great joy to hear those whom you have helped speak gratefulness and be enthusiastic. Such things as this make me feel that there is still a place for Central. Our school is doing for their youngsters something that few other schools are doing. It deserves to succeed.
Katherine doesn’t have the mumps, rather the glands of her neck are causing her trouble. I was home for a bit yesterday and the kiddies and I had a good romp. Dad comes home about twice a week, so I imagine that Mother gets a little lonesome though she says she doesn’t. Mother has been up to Lawrence’s recently and reports that Gloria Jean is as peppy as can be. She says that about all that Rose gets done is to play with her baby. She is continually making things for her and fixing her up – just as if she were a little doll. She is a darling baby – so pretty.
Last week I got a little excitement through an accident that occurred to a boy in the senior class. Viola Preston’s brother went out in the country to get a girl who was coming in to play practice and on the way in just east of town a car crashed into them on a bridge. One of the girls came in to get me to go and get Mr. Preston. I hated to break such news to him but I did it calmly enough not to greatly disturb him, it did Mrs. Preston though. The car is almost a total wreck and the wonder is that the occupants weren’t killed. The girl was cut on the knee and had a bad bump on the jaw while Carl was shaken up a little and bruised. The girl took her part well in the play though.
One of the other senior boys got into a bad scrape the other day. He and some other boys were at a dance at Columbus. He was outside the hall and a big car drove up and as it did it scared him as it came close to bumping in to him. He thought it was some fellows who were drunk and started to cuss them. Just at that time out stepped a cop and the chief of police from the car and said “come with us”. The other boys had to take up a collection and had a hard time to raise $15,, the sum necessary to get him out of jail, but they finally succeeded and the boy was released at 11:00. I hope he learned a lesson, though I doubt that he did.
4/30/30 (includes clipping of Mom’s election to youth conference)
The occasion of your school’s closing is tragic as far as nearly everyone is concerned. I can’t imagine how surprised and disappointed you must have been to have Catherine tell you such news. You should get a real rest now before the events of the summer arrive. If you should find a little spare time remember that there is a young man who would love to have you come to see him. I had given up the thought that you might come to visit my school but when the news reached me this morning my hopes were renewed. If you would come to Norfolk I would be glad to meet you there. I don’t want to encourage your doing this if by so doing you will be hurried to complete your work of preparation for the summer. It wouldn’t be an item of great expense and would be a lot of fun.
Too bad about your shower but it couldn’t be helped, I suppose. Did I read that you didn’t get to be at home for your birthday? That, if true, was too bad. I hope all your plans for marriage will not be so haphazard and disappointing.
The little clipping was interesting. I shall keep it among my collection. Why not? It will serve to remind me of the most wonderful experience of my life – without question, the most wonderful experience. Really, I feel so unworthy of you. I wish I really knew what you think about me when you think rationally apart from love.
Sunday, after writing to you, I wrote letters in a real ambitious fashion. I wrote to George and Guy as well as to four or five other persons. Now perhaps the mystery of my declining personal correspondence will be solved.
I received a copy of “The Quest”, and international young Quaker magazine. Did you get such a paper? I want to subscribe but there will be no need for both of us subscribing. I’ll wait to hear from you. One of my happiest thoughts about our married life is that we shall read together, especially in the evening.
Yesterday I picked up my encyclopedia and turned to Niagara Falls. Don’t you do such a thing unless you wish to become enthusiastic about spending quite a time there next summer. Really, it must be wonderful – judging from what I read. I could just see us observing the many physical miracles and floating away I our love dreams in the spray and water.
I’ve just returned from the junior-senior banquet which was a very delightful occasion. It was worked out after the fashion of a carnival and was very clever. I had to give a toast on the subject “masks”. This occasion recalled to my memory one banquet during our Junior and Senior years. We had a good time, did we not? I always enjoy attending such affairs with you – in fact I don’t feel right not to have you. You always look so beautiful and seem so happy on such occasions. Truly you are the idol of my dreams.
I’m glad you like the present. Best of all though is the fact that it’s’ ticks carry my message to you I thought as I bought it how it could serve as our night guardian and watch as we sleep in Philadelphia. As a general rule I don’t make promises as far as a year in advance but since it is you that asks me to promise 23 kisses, collectable at 6:30 am April 27, 1931, I shall promise This must be accompanied with a proviso, though That is, that on August 22, 1930 at 6:30 am you give me 23 kisses.
Simmons took ill this week so last night she wished me to drive her in her car to Central City for treatment. I did and when the doctor saw her he advised her to go to bed and remain there because she had a very contagious throat disease. She didn’t return so I took my time about leaving Central. I stopped at Nortsheds and did – what do you suppose? – bought a new suit for our special occasion on June 10.. I feel that much nearer a married man now. I know what you will say, “I want to see it”. But no, not until I come to see you on Tuesday morning, June 10. I want to surprise you, you see.
Of course I visited with Guy Solt while at Central. He says he is going to try to get a decision from the College Board this Friday night about student campaigning. Ester was brim full with excitement to talk to me. She said that their plans are immature yet Guy Puckett may return to Nebraska but on the other hand the Hockett family may all drive to California and thus combine a tour with the marriage Esther wants to be married at home, though and if she is Guy and she will be with us Had you thought of who you would want of our friends to be there if Guy and Ester should not be there? Guy has definitely decided to stay in California for another year.
It must be difficult for you to separate from your youngsters so abruptly though I hope it won’t affect you very seriously. Your job of closing school and fumigating will be an unhappy one I warrant.
Since your folks don’t want you to come home, don’t you feel like a
vagabond lover? No, I’m not afraid of you so don’t let that hinder you from coming to see me if you can come. I’ll brave any danger to be with you, especially when the danger is as remote as it would be if you came.
I’m not surprised that you haven’t received a letter from Miss Lang yet. No, I think it wasn’t the shock of your picture because I haven’t heard from her since I wrote to her and sent her mine and surely my picture wouldn’t startle her, eh, hem! She seems to be awfully slow on her end of the line; I don’t know what to expect of her. I hope she isn’t that slow in all of her work. A letter came from Bess today in response to my further inquiry concerning the wages we should receive. Bess assures us that you will receive $80/mo. and laundry and room whereas I will receive $100 and expenses. She suggested that your board will amount to about $1.00/day. Therefore the two of us will have $150/mo. for our own use. We should be able to save some of that after paying our expenses, I should like to know what equipment we will need to furnish for our room but I suppose we shall learn if we are patient Bess said our work would last until at least until the middle of June and probably all summer if we wished to stay. Certainly we have nothing to lose in such a proposition.
For some reason I haven’t felt very well this week end. I was at home and when I came back I’ve had a headache. I’ve had much to worry about this spring and more now but perhaps I’ll get
over it with a little rest. With lots of love some of my perplexities won’t cause me so much anxiety. I’ll be greatly relieved when school is out. I suppose I really should rest awhile but student campaigning isn’t such difficult work. I’ll mix those two weeks with jollities of you visit, commencement, and yearly meeting. Then vacation tie will be at hand.
Estellene and Faith just dropped in to pay me a visit. I enjoy their company. Estellene looks much healthier this spring than I have seen her before. She is still skinny but her complexion and appearance is much better. I’ve enjoyed the company of the girls this year; in fact it’s about all I have had with no boys my age around.
When Edith was putting a hair piece in her hair the other day she missed her hair and punctured her ear drum. Thus she has been quite unwell this week due to the pain. She managed to teach, however, all but one day. She has lost the sense of taste on one side of her tongue but the doctor says it will return and her ear will heal. She is going to summer school, perhaps to Central. You knew they were going to have summer school, didn’t you? Edith is now keeping company quite steadily with a farmer boy who lives near her school. He seems to be a fine chap.
Chester says he is going to take you away from me. What do you think of that? He always talks about you when I go home. Leonard is still a book worm; he reads continually. Katherine is well now and is a peppy as ever. I laughed at her because she hung a little boy a May basket and pretty soon the boy hung the same May basket on her door only he had different candy in it She first out right in the presence of the boy, “why, he gave me my basket back”. Mother laughed heartily over the matter. THz kiddies are all doing well in school; I shall get awfully lonesome of them next year. I’ll not burden you by it though.
Lawrence is working as a foreman of a special gang of railroad men now and will do so for the rest of the summer. He receives about $225/mo. for this work. Lawrence and I haven’t much in common now but never-the-less I get lonesome for him I think I shall write and invite him and Rose to our wedding. He and Rose have worked hard to pay for their home, car and baby and they are now practically out of debt June 12 is the third anniversary of their marriage.
If Guy and Esther can’t be with us June 10 what would you think of just having Merl and Lillian serve as witnesses and partners in crime? Had you thought of anyone else?
You are a dear for deciding that you will come soon. If not tomorrow then hasten Monday. You are to be congratulated on your decision to spend the next Sunday with Mother.
Do you have a clear mental picture of our living quarters for next year? I’ll venture you have every article located, don’t you? By all means we shall need extra blankets under such unforeseen circumstances! Looks as though our beds will be “twin” whether we will or not. Either we shall make an exchange or use one of those cots only for special occasions. How do you like that? Don’t you admire my determination in response to this matter?
I also received a letter from Miss Lang though she told you more than she did me. All she stated in my letter was that I would have charge of the boy’s work and you would be an assistant in the girl’s department. She also said that we wouldn’t need to go to Philadelphia before September 3 and that we would have plenty of time for adjustment during the first month. She will not return from her vacation until on that date. I’m anxious to read your letter. In regard to the change in salary, it would seem to me that the latter offer $60 and expenses would be preferable to the original offer. This latter offer provides your laundry and board for only $20, which appears to be more reasonable than if we had to pay outright for it. Then too, if in the end there were no difference we would be spared the necessity of looking after another financial item each month. Certainly nothing could be lost in the recent proposal and something might be gained if nothing more than convenience for them and us. Miss Lang told me she would send a contract soon – I suppose before doing so she awaits your reply I didn’t suppose Quakers, especially easterners signed contracts – it was originally not a Quaker practice. I think it is wise to have a written agreement, don’t you?
I received a long letter from Guy Puckett yesterday which was certainly welcome. His plans are still indefinite but he is going to make a desperate effort to be at our wedding. He will let us know definitely as early as he can.
This is indeed a wet country. It has rained all day and at 10:30 is still pouring I hope it gets it out of its system before June 10, don’t you?
Naturally I anxiously awaited a telegram from you yesterday though I doubted that you could come. It is natural to hope for what you want to occur when the result is doubtful, isn’t it? It must be very disgusting to be so played with by Kruse and you teachers are.
If it continues to rain I shall become web-footed, I believe. It has rained for the past week. We had a small flood last Tuesday night which was quite exciting to the townsfolk The lower floors of the school were covered with six inches of water, therefore yesterday was declared a holiday The water was all dipped out and it was quite pleasant again today It has been clear today, but now it is raining to beat the cars.
I had a letter from George yesterday which justified our anxiety for them. They haven’t located for next year George is trying to get into social service of some kind. Zola hasn’t been well this year – you recall that her health was undependable when she was in school. She gave up her teaching three weeks ago and is now with her mother under the doctor’s care. George said they didn’t know what the difficulty was but that one doctor thought it was a tumor. They don’t have a very pleasant future to anticipate.
Why do I say 6:30 am? What was the significance of that request, dear? Do I read a protest against such an early awakening? You must realize (eh, hem!) that after our honeymoon we must settle down to business establish regular hours (5 am to 8:30 pm), refrain from sentiment, be conservative, etc. Surely you must arouse yourself from your lonely little cot and do the early morning work before you dare approach my sleeping quarters There! See what kind of a husband you are getting? You know I couldn’t stand such a rigid life.
I’ve been following the Indian situation quite closely though at such a distance it is hard to know the truth. Undoubtedly Gandhi is the greatest spiritual power in the world today. He holds some 300,000,000 Indian people in the palm of his hand because of the sheer force of his personality and soul. I view the situation from three perspectives: first, I sympathize with the desire within the natives for political and economic liberty; second, I am opposed to British Capitalistic imperialism; and third, India is a great, crowded, ignorant, and complex land. The third is the cause of the second and the second the cause of the first. Imperialists in America, of course, favor England and discredit Gandhi but on the whole I think that Americans sympathize with India. Gandhi is certainly setting a precedent for oppressed peoples in using passive resistance or “soul force”. My guess is that it is a more certain blow at England than physical revolt Perhaps that is one of the reasons Gandhi was imprisoned – the English feel that it will be an easier matter to subdue India with machine guns and bayonets than with boycotts I’m full of this subject and I should love to have someone to talk to who would listen like you always do. Better still when what I think will really amount to something. The ore I teach and live the more I am convinced that I must give myself to the study of international issues.
We don’t seem to have much difficulty to agree with each other about plans for the summer, do we? You have been so wonderfully patient with me in all my uncertainties and then, too, so willing to cooperate I used to wonder whether we could live happily in view of our differing interests but now there seems to be very few differences and toward those we do have we are sympathetic It all seems like a triumph for our long years of courtship.
How different has been this evening from what I had planned. My first thought upon awakening this morning was “today she is coming”. I could hardly wait until evening and I shaved especially for you this morning Of course, I was disappointed when I received your telegram this noon. I don’t know whether or not to be anxious about your welfare, or to plan on you coming soon Of course you will let me know all about your change of plans as soon as possible. I know you too must have been disappointed
Mrs. Sigia said that she heard over the radio that a storm struck the area north of Norfolk last night. Putting everything together, I suppose that weather conditions necessitated a change in your plans.
Because it rained yesterday my audience at church was small. In the morning I gave a Mother’s Day talk and in the evening I told them about the Quakers. Needless to say, I had a good time. Went home for dinner and didn’t return to Monroe until evening. The folks were more anxious to see you than I, I do believe. So you know they must have wanted to see you very badly. Chester insists that you are his girl rather than mine. Dear boy.
The seniors are having a difficult time finding a suitable date for sneak day. Now they have decided upon this Thursday. They chose that date because I planned on your being here the early part of this week. If you come now you can go with us to Lincoln if you wish or someone else can sponsor the group. I don’t care a snap about the day myself. I would much sooner teach school. I’ll be glad when that group is graduated; they have such terrible times when deciding upon anything.
The sunshine was welcome today after such terrible rains as we have had here. The town was flooded twice and everything has been muddy and wet since. The town of Silver Creek has been entirely flooded for the past several days If it begins again I’ going to build an ark.
Your letter quieted my anxieties considerably. I was a little worried about your welfare until your letter came, though I suppose I should be more worried now after reading that you are broke.
I’m reminded as I sit here tonight that four weeks from this time will be thrilling to say the least. It hardly seems possible that the tie is so short yet I don’t have any regrets. In one sense it is fortunate for you to have this extra tie in which to complete your wedding arrangements. I’m so busy now studying the League of Nations, the World Court, and Ramsay MaDonald that my mind is kept off of the coming events to some extent I dislike not to be able to dream but it isn’t good for me to do too much of it.
Regarding your query about inviting Mrs. Newlin and Helen – that will be satisfactory with me. Do you know whether they will be in Allen at that time? I recall having asked Helen about Yearly Meeting and she replied that they didn’t know whether or not they would be in the state.
Mary Ida Winder will be at Yearly Meeting this year. I always look forward to seeing her and visiting about her work because that is my work too. Yes, my job in this life is clearer now than ever before – it is in the line of politics and international relations. Come what may I am steering on until I have done what my ambitions demand. The future with all its doubts and problems would not be nearly as promising without you to love and live for. While I must do what I feel I should do I covet the realization of all your dreams for you. I shall be disappointed if our marriage shall deny you what you want most. Now if you feel the same way, how perfect!
Why do you suggest that your letters should be destroyed soon after they come? I may agree after we are married but I doubt it. Our lives are revealed too exactly in our letters to make it seem right for me to destroy the record. No better diary could have been kept than your letters.
This morning the post office was closed before I went on our sneak day trip so I missed your letter. Though the office was closed tonight when I got home, I went to Kelley’s and had they get my mail. I certainly wish I might be able to grant your request and put my arms around you and tell you all was well. For it is, and I love you as tenderly as ever.
You said it was a week since you heard from me. I don’t understand. Because I thought you would be in Allen I addressed one letter there and then I thought you would be coming here so I didn’t write my usual letter. I wasn’t cross because you didn’t come; I was just greatly disappointed.
Your letter has caused me anxiety over your money in the loan association. Yes, I would take such a response from them to indicate that they were on slippery ground financially either that, or they fear a “run”. Had they written you previously concerning the fact that you must give them thirty days’ notice before drawing your money out? Wasn’t the association the same type of an institution as a bank and didn’t you have the privilege of checking on your account? If affirmative, I think you should insist that they should give you your money.
We went to Lincoln today and visited all the important places: the capitol, the “pen”, the university, etc. This afternoon we went to a movie which was terror – kept you excited and mystified until the end. I did get to see Ralph. I marvel at the capitol building. Today a guide showed us about and if what he says is true, and no doubt it is, the building is one of the most wonderful in the world. When you are in Lincoln I hope you see it.
What you told me about Merl and Lillian makes me anxious for them to get married before they change their minds It seems that they have a difficult time with their plans and arrangements, doesn’t it? I hope and know that we won’t have any such difficulties. Especially since you and your mother are making such careful preparations. You put your whole soul into what you do. It gives me the most satisfied feeling you can imagine to have you thinking and doing so many things just for our love and happiness.
It is hard for me to realize that school is so nearly over I’m glad though I regret in some ways that I will leave here When I compare these things thought with our plans for next year, there is no choice as to which is the better or wiser. I’m happy with our plans and I feel that you are. They seem too good, or near what we wanted, to be true. It will be great fun to work, live, and love with you.
The other day when writing to Bill Thomas I told him of my plans for the summer and fall. He stopped by the school the other day and complimented us on our arrangements. He asked your name and when I told him is responded, “Merl’s sister, if she’s anything like Merl you are to be highly congratulated!”. He asked us to come visit him at Camp Sheldon this summer.
I’m full of ambitions and dreams today and you are helping me perform them all. I see you as a beautiful loving wife a source of inspiration a wonderful hostess, a good other, and all. Dr. Stuart said this morning that a woman’s greatest service was her inspiration and influence. I can’t make myself believe that we are to be married in about three weeks. Two more Sundays before I go to you to leave you again never.
I don’t want you to feel that marrying me is chaining yourself with undesirable fetters. Life reaches its highest happiness when two are bound together willingly and freely in pursuing their dreams. It is my hope that within the next two years we can go to Europe and study. When we return I expect to be an authority on some things and you will be well qualified in your arts. When you say “I do” on June 10 then we shall start on one happy crusade. It’s apparent, isn’t it, that “I’m a dreamer”.
The fact that I didn’t talk very fully with your father makes me wonder if I shouldn’t come up next Friday.
Friday night the pep club gave a party for the basketball team. We had a jolly time. They gave us a beautiful trophy because we won two-thirds of our games.
Yesterday I went home and had a good tie with other, Edith, and the kiddies. Edith’s school was closed three days early on account of smallpox.
I expect that Lawrence and Rose will not be joining us for our wedding. I will be disappointed if they don’t but it can’t be helped, I suppose. I hope Merl ad Lillian don’t disappoint us too.
It seems that there is no end of trials and sorrows in this life yet the converse is as true. I wish you were here to help me in a problem that is new and painful to me. I’ll tell you all about this matter Friday but not in a letter. No, it is nothing that concerns me personally but I’m called on to “bear another’s burden”.
This matter took me to Columbus tonight but I had to hasten back to a farewell party given in my honor at the Union Church. Everyone seem so appreciative of what I have done though to me I have just lived my normal life.
The seniors tendered me quite a surprise the other morning. They called a class meeting, then called me in and presented me with a splendid bill fold. I was greatly surprised and I enjoyed their expression of like for me. Such things as these together with many “good-byes” make it seem that I’m hurting someone by leaving. I should dislike to leave very much if it wasn’t to take up a happier abode – that with you.
Our bank opened Monday. I haven’t been down to see how my account stands. I think us all have 30% deposited but we can only draw out 10% a month. So, my dear has gotten herself into a financial embarrassment. Well, that doesn’t worry me at all – I’m so used to being so situated that I am confident everything will work out well. I’ll come to your rescue Friday.
I should have told you that last Sunday afternoon I dropped into Suttons Faith and Irene produced a beautiful bedspread, a light blue one, and said it was ours. This certainly was a surprise. I like it so much, you know my sympathy for blue. I know you will love it too. I certainly appreciate the fact that I have gained some real friends here in Monroe. The memory of these two girls will always be a pleasant one.
I had a letter from Guy Solt today assuring me of work for the summer should I be able to give some time. I must write to him tomorrow again and state my terms. I’m remembering your objections to my doing this work, and I shall do everything to make you happy while I labor.
Tomorrow examinations, Thursday reports and check in books, Friday the picnic, then rest with you. You should be quite rested by June 10, however, you will worry a lot, won’t you?
Yes, you can make train connections early Tuesday morning to Lincoln. I think the train departs about 6:00. Phew! That will be early, won’t it? We should get used to it though because we will probably see that hour pretty regularly sometime I don’t like to think of you leaving Central and me on Tuesday morning That is the day of the alumni banquet. I had so hoped you could go with me if not to the breakfast, then to the old student’s dinner in the evening. But if you will be happy to go to Lincoln, I grant that you should go.
Will you welcome just one more letter upon your arrival at home? I know you will.
My thoughts left Central City for the most part on the train that left last Tuesday morning though I was still asleep. I missed you so greatly and even now I want you more than anything else. How happy to know that on five more days remain before we are united forever.
Yearly Meeting is going as usual. Sermons, sermons, and more sermons and they all say the same things, or practically so. I have had a delightful visit with Mary Ida as well as with the Mission Secretary She told me about many interesting opportunities for service in other lands, When we go through Richmond this summer I want us to investigate all possibilities for going abroad soon. Several were mentioned that I think would appeal to you as they do to me.
Phil Stein was telling me today that Zola’s baby has been taken from her thru an operation and that Zola is getting along in health quite well. I do hope George gets a good job for next year after all his hard struggle and effort. Too bad that this accident has happened to them but after all it could have been avoided. I suppose they are not entirely to blame. It seems that there is a serious defect in our education somewhere if two people who have enjoyed educational opportunities center into marriage uninformed.
The breakfast yesterday morning and the banquet last evening were both delightful occasions. The banquet last night was late because at the about the time for it to begin it poured down rain. Did I say “pour”? Literally sheets of water fell. Consequently the lights went out so lamps and candles saved the day again. In spite of it all we had a good crowd and a good time.
Because of the heavy rain my student campaigning has been interrupted so all I can get done now is to work tomorrow and Friday.
Saturday morning I need to be here at Yearly Meeting. At noon I shall leave for Columbus. There I shall have my laundry done and also some pressing. Sunday, at about noon, I will start for your place. Then sweetheart, the time will be very short. I hope you will be already prepared by early Monday so you can have your mind free.
Of course I’ve been wondering how you have gotten along at Lincoln. I hope you have fully enjoyed your dear self and also that you have been somewhat rested. We shall get a real rest soon dear but I want you to be “peppy” on our wedding day.
Will close now, dear, but only this letter. My love and thoughts shall be with you continually.
You’re adoring lover and sweetheart – John