Mom 1930

 

1/1/30

Catherine came out home with me and we’ve just laid around and eaten lots of food.  Lazy but restful.  This evening we went to the show “Broadway Melodies”.  Ralph Chester and Lawrence came with us.  The show was dumb I thought.  Would have been better I suppose with vitaphone but they haven’t got that started yet although there is to be one.  The love making was so slow and dumb.  They don’t know how.  It made me miss you. You know how in the right way.

 

1/5/30

A most distressing thing has happened in school again and of course it had to come from my room.  I feel dreadful about it but it is no fault of mine either.  I only wonder if after all my teaching is worth anything – not in arithmetic, reading, etc., but in those qualities that make character.  Tuesday afternoon a billfold was stolen from the pocket of one of the baseball boy’s trousers.  We were reasonably sure it happened before school was dismissed so we all turned in the names of students who had left the rooms during the afternoon.  The fold contained over seven dollars and a number of papers such as driver’s license, etc.    Thursday one of the business men called Kruse and said a small boy was trying to cash a five dollar bill.  He knew of our trouble and thought it so unusual for a small boy to have that much money so called our attention to it.  The boy said another was hiring him to change the bill and keep still about it.  That boy said he found it on the school ground and produced the fold and money that he hadn’t spent but the papers were all gone.  Both of the boys are in my room and I’m sure I know which is guilty.  I have found him cheating in school work several times.  He is of low mentality and gets nowhere in his school work or seem to care or try.

I’m glad everyone around here likes you.  Mrs. Newlin thinks she had the best joke on you.  She and Helen were walking home with one of the high school girls one day and the girls were talking about the boy friends around the school last week.  Helen said she thought Miss Miler’s friend seemed very nice.  The other girl said “yes, but Benton’s guys is the cutest”.  Mow Mrs. Newlin calls you “Benton’s guy”.

Mrs. Heizer was all excited yesterday and had to tell me at once that she has all but landed a job for you in Central High in Sioux City (at least she thinks so).  She called some member of the board she knows and asked him if there would be any vacancies.  She told him about you and he wanted you to apply.  She is determined to have me next year also if I was that close to her she would probably drive me to distraction.  However, I certainly would like to have the work under her and Mother would be glad to have us so near home.

Ralph left Saturday.  It seems a bit lonesome around without him.  I surely hated to see him leave.  We have always been such pals.  Brother Ralph will always be a friend and pal of ours.  He is very fond of both of us.

 

1/6/30

Your letters are such inspirations and set me on wings of fancy.  I have just read the last two through again and wonder how I can wait even two months to see you again.  What do I honestly think of you?  I love you absolutely and whole heartedly.

I went to the show last night “Illusions” featuring Buddy Rogers and Nancy Carroll.  Our new theater tried out its new vitaphone this evening in a comedy.  It does not work perfectly by any means but quite nicely.  It will surely be a big drawing card for the show.  I don’t know whether that will be so good or not.

The Methodist church is trying to hold a revival meeting this week but I fear the faculty is not supporting the meetings very well.  The minister boards at Mitchell’s.  I think he is quite well fed up all ready because he is the rather radical type.  At the table last night he asked me if the teachers were always that noisy.  I am sure he thinks we all need saving which might not be so far from the truth.

 

1/12/30

I have just finished reading the book “All’s Quiet on the Western Front”.  I have never read and hope never to read again a thing as horrible as that.  It nearly drives me to desperation thinking of the horrors of war and I have nothing in my experience to compare to it.  I marvel that any ex-soldier can live even half way decent one.  In me you will find a willing aid in World Peace.

I was most excited and I as pleased as my youngsters were Friday morning.  We received the results of the sales of the Christmas seals.  We won a dandy volley ball.  The children are so proud of it.  They always want to know who can carry it down to the gym and who should bring it upstairs again.  They like to brag about it to the fifth and sixth grade.  They didn’t sell enough to get such a premium.

Ray and I are going to a piano concert in Sioux City Tuesday evening.  Meyers is going with us but will stay at her home during the concert so I will be safe, you see.  You know I would be anyway because I have given my whole heart to you.

 

1/13/30  Sent special delivery

I didn’t get your letter until this morning and it hurt me so much after what I wrote in my letter yesterday that I couldn’t be at peace until I wrote again.  I won’t be quite happy until I hear from you again.

Dear heart, I wanted to go to the concert tomorrow evening so much and the only chance I would have to go would be to take Ray along.  Mrs. Heizer got us special rate tickets to go and it never entered my head that there would be any reason why I shouldn’t go.  In the light of what you said perhaps it would be better for me not to go with Ray.  Believe me when I say it was no date as I think of a date.  In fact, I asked Ray to go because he is just beginning his study of piano work and it is good for him to hear good piano concerts and you know how I enjoy them.    He would never think of asking me for a date nor would I accept.  He thinks too much of you for that.

I wish I knew what to do.  I can’t do anything but think of you.  I had my ring cleaned Saturday and it twinkles at me just like your eyes do when they are full of mischief.  I truly wish you were here to talk to me.

 

1/14/30

This has been a blue day for me in so many ways.  I won’t burden you with the troubles for they are rather petty perhaps but it is those little things that make life pleasant or unpleasant.  Then after reading your letter this morning I thought of you and felt so sorry to think that you were feeling so badly and I feel so good.  I surely hope you are better now.  I am trusting your difficulty is nothing more than a cold.  Please take good care of it and be careful.  You are too old to do such a childish thing as have the chicken pox.    I thought I was bad enough but I can’t hold a candle to you with as much work as you have to do.  I don’t see how you handle it all.

Fortunately for me we had the afternoon off today.  We are having a real old blizzard with plenty of snow and wind.  It began last night and is still going strong.  The wind is howling.  By noon Kruse began to wonder if we hadn’t better send the children home.  I spent the whole afternoon making out grades and report cards.  I’m not quite done yet but I can easily finish now.

There is one little point I want to set you straight on, my dear, and that is about my future work in music.  Rest assured that you needn’t be responsible for that.  If I am not able to work it out financially myself, I won’t take lessons.  You are saving for your own education which you must think of first.  I am just going along.  I can’t make ends meet as far as my music is concerned, I don’t study.  Think nothing more of it.  I have told you a hundred times – I don’t want to be a burden to you.

 

1/16/30

After scouring and disinfecting myself to the nth degree I feel like I should be clean enough to satisfy even the most fastidious person  You ask why all of that?  A deep, dark secret.  We have case of the itch in school.  Horrid isn’t it but true nevertheless.  I’m not taking any chances so I used Lysol, camphor and no end of lotions and wash often.  Anything for protection.  Talk about school troubles.  I guess we are not the only ones.  Evidently you are beginning to realize some of the difficulties encountered by those in the teaching profession.  Now do you think Merl and I are “all wet”?  Some folk are not fazed by anything but force and that doesn’t always have much effect.

I am still having a dreadful time with my little thief.  I can’t trust him as far as I can throw a cow by the tail.  The minute I have my back turned he tried all kinds of monkey shines.

This week one of the boys who were expelled from school early in the winter came to the office demanding his football letter.  Kruse said no, not until he was ready to come back to school and act like a scholar.

The names he called Kruse do not bear repeating.   The way he behaved was terrible so Kruse had him arrested. They fined the young “upstart” and now have him in the “coop”.   The marshal is making good use of him just now cleaning off sidewalks.  The idea of a kid sixteen years old thinking he can run things the way he wants and simply ignore all the other authority.  What is this world coming to?

I received an interesting letter from Lillian yesterday.  Said she could scarcely wait until summer.  How wonderful it would be to be with Merl all the time and not just now and then.  I could tell her it is not so hot being with Merl.  I have lived with him for several years and never got so thrilled about it.  What a difference in people.

 

1/19/30

You shouldn’t say such things as you wrote in your last letter.  It frightens me. No one human being can deserve such devotion – not I of all people.  If you put me on that level you are setting a tremendously high standard for me to follow.  I must carefully guard every thought and action let I fall from the pedestal.  You live that way easily but for me it is more of an effort.    I wish that I could be all that you think I am.  I am wondering if you will wake up after we are married to find yourself terribly disillusioned. Mrs. Ellis said the other night, “Two people may know each other for years but in one year of married life learn more about each other than in all the years previous”.

I wonder how much of our attraction to each other is just purely physical.  I don’t care much now. It doesn’t make any difference.  We love sincerely and that is enough.  I am sure there is enough attraction through common interests and desires else we wouldn’t have stayed together so long waiting our time – even though a bit impatiently.

Naturally I have been thinking a great deal about our marriage.  We have gone over the question so often but still I am not quite satisfied.  It would be so much easier to be married at Carrell’s home without any fuss and bother but I have finally had to admit to myself that I would never be quite happy about it when I thought back about it afterward.  I really want to be married at home.  In the end I think Mother would be happier too.  I’ll venture she would want to have it to remember afterward.  I know that as far as you are concerned you had settled it that we should go to Carrell’s home.  You won’t mind the other way, will you?  We’ll only be married once and I would like to remember things in a pretty way.  At hoe I could fix things the way I wanted them – decorating, dinner, guests, etc.  I know a man detests fuss and frills and I do too in a way, but in my heart I would rather like it for just this once.  Outside the family there are only two people I would really like to have attend our wedding and they are Guy and Ester.  Do you suppose they could be there?  They would probably be married by that time if not back in CA.  I have thought of a lot of things I would like to have done if we are married at home.  I will tell you the details if you are interested in the plan.

So Simmons doesn’t get along very well.  That is strange (not if you think back to days in NCC).  She just doesn’t know how I wish she hadn’t moved over to your house.  She will cause you trouble.  Did you think further about finding another place?

When I told Mrs. Heizer about your failure in getting a position in SC she wrote out a list of towns near SC that she insists you apply to.

 

1/21/30

I forgot to mention in my last letter about the books you told me about.  You must do the choosing for yourself.  I can imagine you choosing Well’s History.  I wouldn’t be sorry if you did for I would like to study that a bit myself but probably if I had the same opportunity I would choose something else.  Anything and everything that is readable and good, I like.  We certainly have one common interest and aim and that is to have a library of our own.  We are making a brave beginning now, I think.

 

1/23/30

I’ve been walking around in a dream since I read your letter and haven’t been able to really think.  Of course I want to go with you next summer.  I really would be heartbroken to have you go away on such a delightful tri and leave me here.  The trip and experiences would be wonderful of themselves but to be with you too would be ideal.   Are you sure it would be all right for me to be there too?  The invitation didn’t include e.  Would you ask Bess about that?  What a lucky boy you are to have the honor of such invitations.

Then comes the old question of what would we do the remainder of the summer?  Please, honey, don’t solicit students.  It would be sure to take you away from me.  Couldn’t you find something else to do instead?

Wouldn’t it be nice if everything could be so wonderful and so happy but this old world doesn’t hold that for everyone.  Last Sunday evening a cousin of mine who lives across the hill north was taken to the hospital  His appendix had already burst and now there isn’t much hope for him.  His folks were in California visiting his oldest sister  Word was sent to them and they started back immediately  I am worried about Mahlon and deeply grieved.  He is such a good fellow and so young.  He graduated in Chester’s class last year.

Lawrence is coming up to Allen tomorrow to take county examinations.  I wanted him to go to lunch with me at Mitchell’s but he said he would be scared and couldn’t eat with all that bunch around him looking at him.  He needn’t worry.  They wouldn’t pay much attention to him.

 

1/26/30

You can easily imagine what has been on my mind most of the time since receiving you last letter.  I told Mother about your proposed trip for the summer and she said just what I expected her to say  She thinks it is a question for me to decide for myself.  She reminded me of the plans I had made for the summer and asked if I cared much about dropping them.  That doesn’t bother me like wondering what we shall do the remainder of the summer.  In fun I suggested to Mother that we might stay in the house on Dad’s other farm.  We would just stay there – not live.  The place is too much in ruin for that.  A family is living there now but I don’t see how they manage in this cold weather.  I told Mrs. Heizer a little of your proposal thinking she would regret it because she had counted on me being with her all summer.  Instead she thought I should go with you by all means.  If we are married in June I think I will drop my music at the end of March and she won’t say much about it considering the closing of school and everything.

There may be several advantages in that too.  I stopped to see a doctor Saturday about y difficulties.  He kindly informed me that it is nerves – party due to the after effects of measles.  I very seldom feel nervous and hardly think that is the trouble but I do know that something is wrong and I might as well blame it on that.  Mother suggested this proposed trip would be a good rest for me.  I suppose I wouldn’t need to attend meetings unless I wanted to so I would have a glorious time doing nothing for a while.

I’ve been thinking of wedding plans.  Don’t think I’m going ahead without consulting you.  they are for your approval.  I would rather not have a bridesmaid nor a best man – just us two.  I want Esther and Guy there for chosen witnesses.  If President Carrell couldn’t come up for the ceremony I would choose Mrs. Newlin and have Helen play our wedding march.  Perhaps Ralph would sing for us.  I want your little sister Catherine to b flower girl and carry the ring.  I can’t decide on a color scheme but can do that later.  I think I will ask Josie and Mary Way to help Mother with the work.   I won’t be good for anything.  I’ll have Catherine M. to help me dress.  we will invite only your folks and family and your folks  and family.  There are many friends and relatives I would like to invite but once started on that I wouldn’t know where to stop so think it better not to begin. What do you think?  Be perfectly frank in your opinions.  what color would you suggest for me to wear?  or do you have and preference?  I wish Lillian could be here to help me buy my clothes.  I don’t know what to get.  Perhaps you are saying what’s your hurry, there is plenty of time. If there is only four months left before then I must do all arranging now while I am in my right mind.  Even now I feel a bit panicky to think so little time is left.  I want to so much but still I hate to think of leaving home.

Mother and I were in to see my cousin.  He looks quite good and seems to be getting along fairly well but still has a long way to go.  His folks got back from California and feel greatly relieved to find him as well as he is.

 

1/28/30

You never could guess what I have been doing this evening.  I do this occasionally.  I have found a number of advertisements that I have answered.  Getting samples of things free.  You know, like samples of soap for the school children, plans for parties and games.  I get a kick out of it any little thing new interests the pupils so much.  That is one reason I do it and it also satisfies my curiosity.

I have been feeing a trifle depressed lately – can’t sleep well at night.  Then you still insist that you feel your duty is to work for the college.  If so, I think I had better remain at home for the summer as we have planned before.  If we were going to keep house next year somewhere near your work for the summer I would willingly stay in our home aloe while you traveled anywhere your work called you but, dear, I cannot consent to just “bum around’ anywhere I might find a place to stay with no permanent footing anywhere  Or I might come home after the conference while you work until school begins.  I don’t want to make plans hard for you but you must consider these things in making plans for the summer.  As I said before, you will be working and so busy this question won’t bother you but for me — What shall I do?  I must know definitely.  I say this in deepest love and sincerity  You feel that you must do this work for the college – then by all means I want you to do it but I had better wait my time until later.  Once I really have you, not even your sense of duty will keep you from me.

 

1/30/30

I haven’t been especially happy this week.  I’ve had noon duty this week which is terrible, stating it mildly.  It doesn’t give a person a chance to breath from morning until night.  Catherine and I have nearly had some spots this week.  Last night she wanted to go to the show and I didn’t care to but I went anyway just to keep peace in the family.  The show was good but then I don’t get to practice and read.  Constant late hours are the root of my troubles now, I’m afraid.

Boy I let fly yesterday at some of Catherine’s’ pupils.  I have to herd them in the room every time the bell rings and we mixed yesterday.  I was so angry I could have picked them up and slung them against the wall.  Some did get knocked up pretty well but I noticed today they lined up properly without being told. It surely burned me up and I was so tired after school I couldn’t do a thing.  One little girl was quite sick this morning and had to be tended to, a couple of my boys had a real old fight this noon, etc., etc.,  They say a teacher has a snap of it.  Bosh.  Still there is something rather fascinating about it.

 

2/2/30

I knew there would be a letter waiting here for me when I returned this evening  I was so anxious to hear what Bess had to say about me going to Canada too.  I’m no good at deciding anything.  Between us we just seem to go round and round.  Now that the possibility has been offered, I would a little rather be married in the spring and go to Canada with you and I guess I’ll just leave the rest of the summer to you.  That will be an easy way out of it for me.  How would you like that?  I think by all means you should attend the conference because another opportunity like that may not come again soon. Of course I would like to go with you if I can.  If you went to the conference alone and we were married later, it would be rather an expensive summer for you.  Isn’t it horrid to always have to be thinking about money?

I can’t decide anything until you know what you will do and you want to know what I am going to do.  It’s a vicious circle.  I imagine we will learn this week whether we were re-elected or not.  I don’t know of a one on the faculty who wouldn’t be re-elected.

If you want to send in my name with yours to an agency you may.  If an agency gets you a job they get a good slice of your wages  That would be worth it if they could find work for both of us.  Did you ever investigate work in Oklahoma as you suggested last year you might?

2/3/30

I told you that our school board elected teachers last week.  Mr. Kruse came in to talk to me this morning and tell me the results of the meeting.  I was re-elected with a raise for which I am very glad, of course  All the grade teachers got a raise with the exception of one who reached the maximum grade salary.  All the high school teachers were re-elected with the exception of one – wait until I tell you who and consequently the why for of this letter.  Just a few minutes ago I was up to the building with Catherine getting some supplies and I sang in the hall forgetting there was another board meeting  I may get called on the carpet yet.  To go back to the important thing….by the way, I’m feeling much better this week than I have consequently much peppier.  Think I’ll go to the show this week on my own accord.  It will be “The Thing Called Love”.  Perhaps I can find out about this thing that has us in its grasp so securely.

But seriously, Ingram was the member of the faculty who was not re-elected.  That is, he received a complimentary election with the understanding that the position is open.  I couldn’t get that out of my mind all day.  As far as I can see, you could fill the place to the letter.  You could handle basketball beautifully.  You surely could do as much with football as Nurmie has and if you couldn’t teach manual training better than he has I won’t marry you.  Nurme is supposedly teaching physics and I’m not sure you are prepared for that, are you?  Considering everything, I think this is an ideal job for you.  The present salary is $1450.

After this years’ experience I would really enjoy coming back here to teach again.  I know I would if we were not getting married this summer.  I don’t know just what you would think of this town but we could surely live through one year at least.  What do you think?  Best of all would before you to come up and have a direct conference with the board  Now if you want them to consider us both, make it plain that I would like very much to come back to my work.  If they won’t consider that they might consider your application alone if you want them to.  Mother would be please to death to have us so close home.  Act soon. We will probably have until the first of the March to sign or reject our contracts for next year.  The more I think about it the more excited I get.  Will wait in suspense for your reply.

 

2/4/30

I’m so anxious to know what you are thinking.  I’d like to see you handle the work here.  I’m sure you could make it amount to something.  You seem to have had wonderful success with your basketball work this year and that ought to be a good recommendation for you

The whole faculty went to the show “The Thing Called Love”.  It was a good show but not at all like the thing we call love.  During the picture I could not help but think of our own affairs  I cannot see you acting as that man acted and talking as he talked.  If you ever did I think it would break my heart.  Chances are I would be angry and let fly too and so it would be far into the night.  I hope I have sense enough to control myself and never cause a scene between us.  Real love isn’t going to let us be like that.  We are always going to remember our agreement that we will kiss first and then discuss the point of disagreement.

 

 

2/5/30

I went to the post office to get the mail this evening and was well rewarded.  Your letter would have been sufficient but I had one from Merl also.  Had a letter from Ralph this morning.  Getting letters from both brothers in one day is quit  shock to me.  Something that happens once in a life time.

At last Merl has told me what his plans are for the summer.  Of course I’ll have to tell you but we had better keep it to ourselves for evidently he isn’t broadcasting them.  He and Lilian will get married as soon as school is closed and you would never guess where.  In the Friends church at Denver.  President Carrell will officiate.  Who would’ve “thunk” it?  Long live the bridegroom.  How he happened to tell me was this way.  I wrote to him asking him if he and Lillian could come to our wedding in June.  They plan to take a trip through some of the southern states but he said they could cut that short and come back in time for our wedding.  I have written to Lillian to the same effect but haven’t heard from her yet.

You see what I am doing?  You might have known I would after you suggested the possibility of being married early in June.  To be perfectly honest with you, I can’t think of it any other way.  All along I have just been trying to decide what we should do that would be best.  I believe I have almost made up my mind for sure to unite our love  the sooner the better. and let you worry about the rest of the summer.  If you are willing to give up that retreat and its pleasures just to have me go to Toronto with you, I’ll let anything go which might have come up for me during the summer.  Then we could be together all summer. After your enumeration  of all our fine qualities, I feel like we could most rule the world if we chose to do so.  I grant we have a lot in our favor.

Do you know a girl by the name of Dorothy Kimbal?  Ralph met her in school recently.  She asked Ralph if he knew you.  He answered that he guessed he did slightly.  He had roomed with you three years and is going to have you for a brother-in-law.  Interesting.

 

2/7/30

Just a quick note.  Nothing interesting to write about.  I didn’t try to write last night because Ray came over.  Had to listen to Ray and Catherine quarrel.  They were trying to order some valentines from Montgomery Ward and they had a dreadful time.  They couldn’t agree on anything.

Had a letter from Lillian yesterday explaining some more things  She told me I was a fool if I don’t go to Canada with you.  I am going with your consent, sweetheart.

 

2/9/30

Dear Mr. Ferguson,

This is to inform you that you are condemned to go unkissed for an indefinite length of time for your wicked misbehavior toward the only sweetheart you have who loves you with all her heart.  Your own conscience tells you that you have done wrong.  However, if you are sufficiently repentant perhaps your sentence will be shortened.

You know you are forgiven before you ask.  Why should I care if you write to Mrs. Carrell or anyone else?  That doesn’t worry me any in the least.  You know I have more faith than that in you.  Besides you know what I’ve always told you about the way you and Mrs. Carrell act.  President and I will show you two something someday if you don’t watch out

Yes, I have so far made up my mind that I have already bought some of my clothes.  I know you will think that is foolish and taking a good deal for granted but I’ll tell you how it happened.  Yesterday I went shopping for a dress.  I would have to be in style you know with a long dress.  I have been looking for one for some time but had almost given up in despair.  I couldn’t find any that fit or suited me at all.  Yesterday  went into a classy little shop and in fifteen minutes had tried on several dresses that fit me as though they had been made for me.  Then I couldn’t decide which one to take so I took tow.    One is a black and white outfit that I will wear now  The other one I am going to keep until spring and it will be just the thing to wear at the conference and in our journeying about.  Buying it now will be saving in nervous energy and time.  I don’t like to shop for clothes because I usually have such a hard time.  What ever shall I do when I look for my wedding dress!  What kind of a dress would you like for me to wear?  Should it be white?

Lillian said Merl said hers should be white so white she will have.  She is going to Denver to get her clothes and wanted to know if I didn’t want to go with her.  I hope I don’t have to go that far away to buy my clothes  Sometimes I feel like most anything would do just to get it over with.  You had better help me choose.

Catherine told me something tonight that has made me think that perhaps I should get out of this town.  Not much worried.  It won’t make a great deal of difference to me whether I stay here or not – meaning that I won’t be heartbroken if we aren’t here in town next year.  I would really like to see you get this job however and show these folk a thing or two,

I don’t see why the Allen basketball team hasn’t done better this year.  They haven’t played well enough to get into the tournament.  They lost their game to Waterbury Friday.  Waterbury is undefeated yet this season in conference games.  Dale is proud of course but I think he plays very well.  They play like they know what they are about.

 

2/11/30

Your letter this morning made me very happy.  I was so anxious to hear what you would say about my decision.  I think you must have known how I would decide. There will be many changes taking place in my mind before final arrangements are made no doubt so don’t get confused and bewildered with all my statements.  There are so many little things to think about that are necessary to make everything run smoothly.  This is one time there must not be any flaws of any description

When Dad was taking me to the train Saturday he was asking me about Merl and his plans and then he told me something about his ambition for the boys.  I’ll tell you about it some time.  It came with something of a surprise to realize that the folks are not working for themselves but everything is for the boys  It isn’t the pleasure of accumulating for self but for the joy of giving  It makes a worm glow around my heart to know that I have such parents.  During this talk would have been the time for me to talk to Dad about my own approaching marriage but somehow I couldn’t just then.  I had a feeling that Dad would feel badly.  Have you ever talked to him about it?  If you haven’t, do you think you have done the fair thing to him?  I love Dad a lot and I think we should both talk to him about our plans.

You are to be congratulated upon the excellent standing you have in that community.  It is something to have people ask you to accept a position such as has been almost as good as offered you.  It doesn’t surprise me at all.  I expect such things will happen a good many times in your life.  Your worth is quickly seen and people are eager to make use of it.  I shall be proud to be the wife of such a man  I love you and will always be your greatest admirer.

 

2/13/30

You are very kind to supply my sweet tooth for a while.  Your valentine was lovely or perhaps I would be more appropriate for me to say it was delicious.

I anticipate a merry time tomorrow.  The children are quite excited about valentines  The box is brimful now and I know many of the children haven’t brought their valentines yet.  It is great sport to watch their pleasure.

My heart goes out in sympathy for Catherine tonight.  She received word last evening that her father has had a stroke and is not able to speak or move one side of his body.  He was found in his car in Hartley, Iowa and was taken to a hospital there.  Catherine is very broken up about it and declares she knows he will never get well again  I don’t blame her for being worried but I wouldn’t take that attitude.  She taught today but I know it was a dreadful day for her.  She felt so badly that Mr. Kruse took her home to Sioux City to be with her mother.  Her mother is very emotional and taking on dreadfully.  I can sympathize because death came so near entering our family last spring only a year ago.

 

2/16/30

I am feeling rather happy and elated but don’t know just why.  I have my opinions but won’t tell you just now.

I hoped that my feelings were a good omen concerning Catherine’s father but I fear not.  She did not come back today and sent word that her father is worse.  Truly I hope her father’s condition will be improved sufficiently for her to return on Monday.

I look with unusual eagerness for your letters now  There are so many interesting things they might contain about various things.  I’m always interested in the things you are doing but your actions now are so closely linked with my future that I cannot refrain from being overly eager.  Scarcely four months left in which we must be dependent upon letters to convey our thoughts and feelings and then we shall be together forever to share everything.  I often wish that I might take a peek into the future and see just how it will work – you and I living together.  You have expressed such beautiful hopes for our lives.  Truly it will be a joy.

Your letter made me sure you have forgiven me of the wrong I did you last year and that you will be just as happy now.  I do not know why I felt as I did then.  I didn’t want to be married and for a tie I didn’t care how you took it..  I knew I was hurting you and your replies always made me want to cry but still I wouldn’t give in.  I am a willful creature and , as Ralph says, it will be the one thing that will cause me trouble if anything does.

I dream about you and my heart races.  I remember one night in particular at Young’s Park last summer.  I was sitting in a swing waiting for you after meeting one evening.  Presently out of the darkness you called my name and then came to me.  As you stooped to kiss me there I realized how tender, sweet and real your love for me is.  There is always a tender caress in your hands that I dearly love.  I cannot ever imagine harshness in them.

2/18/30

I am as dense as a block of wood tonight.  I’ve had a cold for some time and can’t seem to get rid of it.  I feel fine during the day but when evening comes I feel punk.  I have fever and nearly bur up.  I am going to be inoculated for scarlet fever tomorrow.  I have put it off as long as I feel I dare but I have such a horror of the disease that I have decided to take this precaution.  Nearly every day another family is quarantined and children are taken out of school  We rather thought the thing had died out last week but it still appears this week.

Catherine came back last evening although her father was no better.  They brought him home Sunday and she said it nearly set her crazy to be around home.  There was nothing for her to do and he didn’t know her so she came back to work.

John, you accuse me of being changeable.  I don’t think I am a bit more than you are.  I was very much surprised at your present proposed occupation.  I didn’t suppose you ever thought of that now.  I guess the trains have a lasting hold on all you folk.  Of course it is an idea to play with and may work out very nicely.  Keep it in mind.  However, this came to my mind.  If you take up that work you are more apt to lose sight of your master’s degree or any further school work. If you took up work with the railroad next year would we live in Columbus?  That would be a happy arrangement, don’t you think?  You decide.  I shall be happy and try to be content if I may have just a few things: give me a piano, home, and you to love and I shall make out very nicely.  I will try very hard not to worry about finances.  There are lots of interesting things I can do.

 

2/20/30

In the midst of exams again an I am about ready to fly.  Nothing makes me quite so nervous as to correct exam papers when there are so many.  If you could see my hair you would know at once how I have been spending the last two hours.  I run my fingers into my hair until it is a mess to behold.  Just lately I have been discovering how true the doctor’s verdict was.  Now with Catherine feeling as she does I am constantly kept on edge.

Mr. Meyers is still no better.  So far he doesn’t recognize anyone or anything so they don’t have much hope for recovery.  Catherine had an opportunity to go in to the city this evening so she went leaving her work piled sky high.  Poor kin – she doesn’t accomplish much of anything.  Her mind is constantly at home.

I spoke too hastily in my last letter for I didn’t have the inoculation done after all. The doctor at Wakefield talked me out of it.  His personal opinion was that it wasn’t worth the risk of a serious reaction.  I know of no recent cases of scarlet fever and we hope the scare has died down.

I suppose you are having the same problem in your school that we are having here since the weather is so warm and that is this game of marbles.  What do you say to the boys who play marbles for keeps?  How should one talk to them about it?  Frankly, I don’t know.  I have no strong convictions either way.  Kruse talked to my goys today and several told him they didn’t know any other way to play.  What do you think about it?

It looks as though your proposed visit must be postponed indefinitely.  I wouldn’t want you to neglect your work nor lessen your ambition one bit, but it is disappointing, you know.

 

2/23/30

I am very much worried about Mrs. Heizer.  She wasn’t a bit well Saturday but was trying to keep up her work.  She is having the same thing I am, a cough that comes from the depths and makes the whole body so sore.  Mrs. Heizer is so frail that anything like that is doubly hard on her  Dad has the same thing and coughs just like he did when he had the measles.

You certainly have done some work to be proud of.  No wonder the town is interested in having you return next year.  Of course they like to have someone who will do all the work.

Mrs. Smith told me Saturday that the superintendent at Waterbury was not re-elected and that they are looking for some new grade teachers.  The supt. this year put out a good basketball team but that was all that was any good about the man and as a help to the community he was nothing.

 

2/24/30

My heart longs for you tonight for comfort and assurance that you are well and strong and by my side.  I always feel so when grief and sorrow has come to others. Word came this evening that Catherine’s father died late his afternoon  I am so sorry for her sake.  God alone knows why such things must happen.  It will be comparatively easy for the girls to forget their sorrow and live their lives happily but poor dear Mrs. Meyers is left alone in the world with very little left to live for  Imagine how alone she must feel.  I do not see how I could live without you  If anything should happen to you it might as well happen to me too for life would be void without you.  You have – and most men do have – your work quite independent of the home.  My work and all my hopes for the future are centered around you and the home we make together.    I must see you soon.

 

2/25/30

Now that you know what your opportunities are for next year, I’ll tell you what I think.  Not that my decisions on such matters amount to much but I want you to know how I feel.  I don’t imagine that you have heard anything from Kruse and I hope not.  What would you think if I told him not to consider your application and that I would turn my contract back unsigned?  I’m sure they would not consider hiring me again and I’m not so certain I want to come back anyway.  The only thing that tempts me at all is being close to the Heizer Music School and near home.  I wouldn’t care to live in this town without working and we couldn’t get a decent house to live in anyway – at least one that is at all modern.  Just say the word and I’ll tell Kruse this  I’d like the opportunity to tell him.  That man and I get along less and less every week.  He doesn’t even give me a chance to be nice to him anymore.  He doesn’t eat at the Mitchell’s anymore.  To tell the truth, I don’t believe I want to teach at all next year – so far domesticated have I become (imagine me saying that last spring).

I would love to live in Central City. Haven’t I told you may times that I wish we might always make that our home?  I like the town, the college is there, we have many close friends there, and our church is there.  It would suit me perfectly.

I think as you do that we would be very happy in Fullerton.  It would really be starting a new life for we know very few people there  No doubt we would find much to make life pleasant  It is up to you to decide what to do.  I am entirely out of the question, seems to me, as far as work is concerned.  Makes it nice for me but oh my poor husband.  I can try to make a ho anywhere you find the kind of work you are satisfied with.  As I have said before – what I know about housekeeping and home making isn’t much.  I’ll need all my time learning to do that.  We will want to entertain friends but I’ll have to learn a lot about the culinary arts before I can do that.

We learned today that Catherine’s father will be buried Thursday afternoon.  Mr. Kruse is asking the board if school may be dismissed that afternoon to allow the teachers to go.  I feel I should go because Catherine and I have always chummed together and she would expect me.  Kruse made it a point to tell me this morning that if all couldn’t go, not one could  I’d say something else but I guess better leave it unsaid.

 

2/28/30

School was dismissed this afternoon and all the faculty went in to Mr. Meyer’s funeral.  The service was beautiful and the family held together wonderfully well but I felt so sorry for Catherine.  I just thought I couldn’t stand it.  I felt so badly when we came home and so did everyone else so a group of us went over to Dixon to see a play given by the high school.

I am so sorry about your aunt’s death but it was not a shock to the family surely. I wish you were here to go to a basketball game with me tonight but I suppose you will be very much excited about your tournament.

 

3/1/30

While I’m waiting for the train this morning I’ll write a few lines…the train came and now I’m situated at Davidson’s.  There is plenty of time before I need to go up to Mrs. Heizer’s so after a while I ‘ll move along and get some lunch.  Wouldn’t I love to have you here to lunch with me?

Do not hesitate to ask for a position for me if there is a chance for me to get one.  I like to teach and would just as soon – would rather under the circumstances but I wanted you to know that I would just as soon keep house for you.  The chances for me to get a school are so slim that I wanted you to know I wasn’t counting too much on that.  I will be perfectly happy any way things are settled since I will be with you.  I want you to settle things but I’ll do anything you want me to do to help you.  I have done and said a lot of dumb things but I am not so dumb that I can’t see the reason why I should work if I can get a position.

Kruse brought the contracts around to be signed last night.  I turned mine in and told him nothing  He won’t talk to me decently anymore and I’m not breaking my neck to get in his way.  He is down on the whole gang and so are we on him for the dirty deals he has given us the last few weeks.  None of the high school teachers want to come back if they can get other jobs.  He wants a gang of Wayne teachers anyway that don’t have so much mind of their own (meow).  I could say a lot of things but I won’t.

 

3/2/30

I am so anxious to see you and be with you again.  Don’t think there will be much time to talk.  Perhaps the wisest thing would be for you to wait a little later so that the time will be a little evener divided between now and the time we are married.  I never say that but what I get a thrill to think that it will really be so in such a short time.

Catherine came back this evening.  She has come through her sorrowful experience much better than I thought she would.  She has strong stuff in her make up that I didn’t realize she had.

I was glad to find Mrs. Heizer much better this week than last.  She said she hadn’t been able to give some of her lessons.

Since the closing of school work will soon be upon us, I am thinking seriously of giving up my lessons as much as I dislike to.  Then it will leave Saturday free for other things.  I will be needing that time you know.

I acquired another new pupil myself last evening.  She will begin her lessons next Wednesday.  That gives me a pupil for every evening after school  3/4/30

It seems most too good to be true to think you are really coming to see me this week.  I hope the week will not drag because I want the time to hasten.  I am sorry that I insisted on your coming if it is apt to spoil anything for you in connection with Bess.  It really would have been well for you to talk with her.  You may change your plans if you want to.  What shall we do while you are here?

We went to the show tonight.  Buddy Rogers in “Half Way to Heave”.  Not as good as I thought it might be but fair.

You certainly get yourself involved in things  I never saw anyone to compare to you.  You seem to have arrived at the place where you most run the town.  You are always telling about some new thing you have begun.  Will there ever be an end to it?  I am jealous of your time.

I get a funny feeling when I realize other teachers are coming here after my job  A girl from Waterbury was here today and learned I am not coming back.  I thought I wouldn’t mind a bit giving up my work here but I do.  I wouldn’t change plans for anything because I want to be with you too much but I don’t like to hear about those who are coming in.  Selfish I suppose.  If you stay at Monroe I rather hope I can teach too  My opinion keeps changing you see, with new developments.  Do whatever you find that you think best.  Thank goodness someone in the family will be level-headed and sensible.  I’ll trust your wisdom so never mind my chatter.

 

3/10/30

Nothing else matters now but you.  I can foresee nothing to lessen our joy soon to come yet I wish it were true now to make sure.  So much depends upon our marriage now, as far as I am concerned that every day only adds to my impatience.  You are strong to have endured as many of the carelessly indifferent things I have said and done but most of the happiness I desire for myself now is in making you happy.    I wonder if I shall ever learn to give in graciously when my will is crossed but I shall try for family harmony’s sake.

Hope you r day has been as satisfactory as mine with one exception; I have wanted to be alone today without the chatter of the gang on school problems, applications, new jobs, school discipline, etc.  These are not the days for hermits (or hearing your correction, heritresses).

 

3/12/30

In my box this morning I found a letter that I have read and re-read many times.  It is indeed heart balm and sure cure for heart ache.  You are a darling sweetheart and I adore you.

I wish you would not take on so much work.  You will wear yourself down  – I speak from experience.  Remember what I had last year?  I know you love to do the things you are doing and I am proud to know that you are capable of doing them but I also want a strong lover husband.

As far as I am concerned, I would be very glad if you could get a position in Wakefield.  It would fix things beautifully for me but I can understand why you might not care so much about it.  Somewhere near Columbus or Central City seems more like home to you, doesn’t it?  My interests are more or less centered here not saying that I couldn’t become established in another place.

Another new pupil began her musical studies last evening.  I thought she was going to be very dumb but she began very nicely.  I haven’t gotten very far in my own practice this week  The lesson seems extremely difficult for some reason but I assure you I don’t mean to get stumped on the last grade.

 

3/13/30

My music has been a great consolation to me this evening.  Ellis’ have been gone and Catherine is at play practice so I have had the evening to myself.  Being alone gives me an opportunity to play as I choose.  I do to my heart’s content until I reach the limit of my nervous energy.

After correcting a few papers I went over to the school building and watched play practice.  I can’t say that I am wild about the play – too much family quarreling and meanness.  Even though it is only a play I dislike it very much.  I vow in my heart I shall never talk to anyone that way and above all others my husband.  It would be a dreadful way to live.  There will be differences and plenty of them but we must remember to settle them peacefully.

Only nine more weeks of school  In many ways I regret it for I dislike to lose this group of splendid youngsters I have this year but I probably wouldn’t have them again anyway even if I did stay.  More and more I am having to catch myself from dropping into day dream .  It would really be too bad if I began to neglect my work.

 

3/16/30

In order to sit and enjoy your letter I had to clear out a space large enough to see into the mirrors at least.  that is one failing of Catherine’s I simply cannot grow accustomed to.  Her belongings are always scattered everywhere – no place for anything.  I have put them away and if she doesn’t like it she still have to learn to put them away herself.

I went to the play given by the Junior Aid here in town.  It was very well given and very entertaining  Catherine certainly made the most of her part.  Her reputation as an actress is well established.  I went to the Waterbury
play on Saturday.  I didn’t care so much for it although it was good.  The players were not as good as the Allen cast.  Dramatics of all kinds ins interesting and now I wish I had taken more of that sort of thing while I was in school  When I think of my college days now I wish I had done a good many things differently.  If I could have known then what I know now I would have planned my work more advantageously.  Perhaps even yet I shall have the opportunity to make up those things I would like to have taken.

How interesting that our minds should have gotten together on the same date of the important event.  I just told Mother this morning that I had finally made up my mind to the date and we were looking it up on the calendar.  Considering all things, I think June 10 will be the day.

 

3/18/30

The possible state of affairs for next year seems almost too good to be true.  Do you suppose it will really work out?  I am not so anxious about teaching two grades again but with so few it might not be so bad.  Dear me, I would scarcely know what to do with such a few pupils  What salary would I get  You should insist on a raise in your own salary.  Lt me know if there is any chance for work and I’ll be right down.  The children are beginning to find out that I am not coming back.  They make it so difficult for me.  I tell them they will have a better teacher next year  I wish the year were over now

Your father is to  congratulated upon his promotion.  It is splendid for him but distressing for the family to have to move again.  It will be sorry if they move, providing we are in Monroe next year.  It would have been the next best thing to being near my own home.  I will miss Mother dreadfully.  These last two years have spoiled me again.  I do like to be home.

 

3/20/30

The problem that distresses me now is a popular one – money.  It isn’t a question of how to get it, but what to do with it.  I haven’t much but what shall I do with that little that I have.  I think I told you that I have been putting it in the United Savings and Loan in Lincoln.  You’ve seen what has happened to several loan associations and one in Lincoln too  Mine is alright as far as I know but is it safe after all?  If I did draw it out, what would I do with it  Rumors have it that the Waterbury bank is near collapse ad I’d be just as apt to lose it there.

A peculiar idea has come to me so I’ll pass it on to you.  I might draw out the amount and you could use it to eradicate you indebtedness,  It would be paid back later, you know, in the things I’d ask you to get for me which I otherwise would probably not ask for.  Isn’t that a bright idea  I am sure you would be a safe investment

I suggested some such thing to Ralph but Mother put a stop to that.  She said my money would be too much tied up and it would be too long before I could get it again  The no doubt would be true with Ralph but with you – you would be at my mercy and able to pay back whether you felt so inclined or not.

 

No fooling.  Ben has made me feel a bit uneasy by saying that if he had money in  savings he would draw it out at once.  I mean to talk it over with Dad when I go home.  Mary Elis lost a good deal in one of the concerns that closed in Lincoln.  It was a good deal of her savings from two years’ work at the store.  I also heard that Mrs. Newlin lost in the same loan company.  It really is serious and is enough to make anyone worried.  Please advise me.

Now on to the old subject of what to do next year.  Your board is really trying to make it worthwhile for you to stay at Monroe it seems, but what about me?  I don’t want to complain, but I would rather not consent to live in one or two rooms with no outside work to do.  I would be a raving maniac and you would find it necessary to put me in chains before the year would be half over.  I would have to have something to do to keep me busy and keep me out of mischief.    Either I’ll have to have a permanent job or a house to keep.  I know what a task it is to find a house to rent in a small town an when you do find one it usually isn’t much with no conveniences.  How can one live decently without a bathroom in the house?  I perceive, lover boy, that when we are married our problems have just begun.  Such things as finding a house, furnishing it ad keeping it in running order will not be so easy.

Now I know I promised not to say anything and let you engineer affairs, but there are some things which would not be so pleasant, you know.  I am hoping one of your present teachers moves on.  I want her job and need it to occupy my mind.

You were very kind to return my comb, you thief.  I discovered your other crime you committed Saturday morning before we left home.  I immediately thought of a means for revenge but considering the fact that you were my guest I refrained but I haven’t forgotten and someday I may pay you in return,  Catherine discovered your trick before she got in bed  She has a habit of throwing the covers far back before she gets into bed.

 

3/23/30

 

Apparently we are not lacking for opportunities to work.  What do you think of the offer from Philadelphia?  I have not been able to think of anything else since I read the letter that came Friday.  I’d give a good deal to be able to talk to you about this matter.  I will be so anxious to get your letter telling me what you think about it.

As I think if it I come to think more and more that it would be quite the work for us.  I don’t know just what the work would be but it might be interesting for a year anyway.

You would have the opportunity to go to school a part of the time if you wanted to.  To me it seems to be a great advantage all around.  Perhaps it wouldn’t be preferable to work at Monroe if we can both work there but is that going to be possible?  Naturally we must think of financial gains in view of the future  I thought perhaps you would be particularly interested in this wok because of school advantages.  The final decision is for you to make.  I am sure you will think it over carefully and make the wisest choice.  You may guess from what I have written that I will be willing and satisfied if it seems best to you that we should go to Philadelphia.

Questions come to me of course concerning the work.  Would we begin at once or in the fall?  If at once would we go to the conference as pre-arranged and then go to Philadelphia at once?  If not until fall, what would we do during the summer – be east or in Nebraska?  You see I hadn’t planned to be so far away from home so suddenly  That is the only objection I have to it at a  Mother said right away “Oh, that’s so far away”.  However it isn’t as if we’d never come back for years.  We would surely come back in the summer for our vacation.  Mother thinks it is a splendid opening for us and advised us to go and for you to go to school there.  I’m glad she talked that way or I should have felt dreadful about it and might not have formed my opinion as I did.  You know I would rather be nearer home than that but since we would be going east sometime anyway it might as well be now.  We will be prepared to come back that much sooner, for we are coming back to live in Nebraska are we not?  I would so much rather live here permanently if your work will permit.

Last week Dad painted the interior of our house.  Mother says that much is done toward the wedding.  The house is all topsy-turvy now.  It wouldn’t be so bad I this would be the last of it but it will probably be done over again before June.

The missionary society is going to piece a quilt this month for me.  That will be fine.  Mother is making me one too.  In time I may have a few things.

Chester and Dale went into the city Saturday and got themselves new suits.  They were all decked out today in great style.  Very neat looking.

You will think me very foolish when I tell you what I have just about decided to do.  It is something I have always admired and wanted but is not necessary at all.  I want a fur neck piece.  I can’t decide whether or not to put the money into it for all the real value it would be to me.  If I don’t get it now I know I never will because there will always be too many other things.  Things for the house, you know.  Everything in my wedding outfit must be of the most exquisite and most beautiful things.

 

3/25/30

Your letter just about wrecked the day for me so far as concentration on school work was concerned.  I wouldn’t have you write any other way of course.  You always seem so generous in your attitude toward everything especially anything I ask you about. Sometimes I wonder if you will actually be like that after we are married.  I am a fortunate girl.

 

3/27/30

My dear,  you are no good at all in helping me to decide by questions.  I might just as well not have you for all the good you do me – to tell the truth, you are too generous in your opinions.  It may bring you to grief someday.  I suppose you are well aware of the fact that in a little matter like that I would suit myself anyway unless you gave some drastic reason for me not to.

The suspense is rather hard on the nerves.  This week has been one of real struggles for me.  I’ll be glad when more information arrives and some decision is made.

You thought of the same thing I did in connection with schools and Prof.  It would be interesting to see him again but I think it would be better not to.  There again you are too liberal in your attitude.  I am sure of that one thing but we won’t discuss it.  It was “every man for himself” then which caused chaotic conditions.  We will let the past rest in peace, shall we lover boy?

As you already know, I share your feeling that this offer is indeed an opportunity for us even though it does make me feel homesick to think of it even now.  I will be so anxious to hear from Bess again.  It is not necessary for me to write to Bess, is it?

Yesterday Virgil Berth brought up some quilts his other had made to see if any of the teachers would want to buy them.  There were made very nicely and were beautiful so I bought one  It was not quite finished but will be soon.  If we make plans to go to Philadelphia be sure to inquire if the cottage is furnished and with what things.  Perhaps we would rather have our own things anyway.

 

3/30/30

I have had a terrible cold since Friday.  It is a great time to b ill.  This is exam week for us again.  Another thing I must tell you but don’t worry about it – I have been directly exposed to scarlet fever.  Last Thursday afternoon one of my little boy was quite sick with sore throat and headache and his face was so flushed.  We had no way of getting him home so he had to wait until the wagon came in the evening.  The next morning the doctor quarantined the family for scarlet fever.  Now the whole room is exposed myself included because I took care of him.

I am anxious to read the letter I know is waiting at the post office.  I’m eager for more information.  You must relay it as soon as anything comes to you.  I talked to Mary Way today about this work.  She says she doesn’t recall this particular work or organization.  When she worked in Philadelphia she was not under the Friends supervision.  She reminded me that we mustn’t think we’ll get rich in the east.  Living expenses are much higher there than here.  She advised making very sure of where we were to live before going there.  Conditions are not always so favorable.

Mary told me something else that interested me greatly.  She has been offered work as assistant hostess at the new school being established in Philadelphia.  She has not decided what to do about it though she is considering it seriously.  As soon as she got my letter she wrote to Phil. asking for more information.  The possibility of our going there too made her more interested.  I would like it immensely if she would be there.

I have finally convinced Mrs. Heizer that I am going to leave her at the end of next month.  I shall regret it very much but it must be.  She thinks she is going to get me in with some music teachers she knows there.  She said she wished I could go to one in particular but she knew it would be too expensive.  Out of curiosity I asked her how much she charged.  Her reply – twenty dollars and hour.  Now if all teachers charge accordingly, I’ll not be studying piano next year.  Perhaps I won’t anyway.

I indulged in my proposed bit of foolishness last Saturday.  Hope you are not too disappointed in me.  Also got a link watch band.  Had it ordered special in yellow gold.  Very fond of it.

Only April and May left, dear.  You aren’t forgetting, are you?

4/1/30

There is so much I want to say to you I scarcely know where to begin.  My mind is so uh upset between happiness, regret, and the strangeness of everything that I am totally at sea.  I have been feeling quite cool toward our proposed work until I received your letter this morning and now I am fired with enthusiasm again.  To tell the truth, the situation is beginning to look too good to be real.  A disappointment of some sort is surely due.  I would like to know a bit more fully what will be expected of me but no doubt I’ll soon learn.  There is no question but what it will be interesting.  The only drawback I see is the great distance from Phila. home.  I have the  queerest feeling when I think of that.

That brings me to another thing which is very selfish of me to say but I might as well be frank about it.  I half way hope our work there will not begin until fall for this reason.  If we leave immediately after our wedding knowing that we will not be back for a year it is going to soil the wedding for me.  Not even my love for you and the happiness in being with you will be enough to take away that dreadful hurt.  If arrangements could be made whereby we could leave home the next day or two I would not mind so much.  Don’t you see – I want nothing to cloud our first happiness together.  If we could be gone a day or two and then come back home for our final leave-taking, I could bear it much more easily.  It is a strange request to make but you understand, don’t you?

Some of us are fairly holding our breath for fear school will be closed because of scarlet fever and measles.  So many students were absent today that all classes, both grades and high school, were much broken.  If it grows much worse the school must  closed although there are no serious cases  that we know about.  The board met today and are considering the matter but decided in the negative.  They don’t want school to be held any later in the spring.  Tomorrow will probably decide the matter.  I am still wondering about myself.  I know I won’t have the measles (can I ever forget?) but scarlet fever is another thing.  I’m trying to be as careful as possible.

I finally took the problem I’ve been having with the little boy to Mr. Kruse and he decided to talk to the boy’s father.  His parents have been aware of his problem because it began when he was very small.  They have had no luck trying to break him of it.  He thinks it is nothing much – more annoying to those who see him than to himself but we are all agreed it should be stopped.  I am to talk to him.  The boy has always lived on a farm and attended a country school.  Coming to this school and trying to play with this group of boys has been almost too much for him.  He is a rather innocent, timid type and doesn’t mix in well with this gang.  They treat him a bit roughly.  For instance the boys told him that he must smoke and drink before he could join their club.  He refused so they told him they were going to lock him up in an old shed for the night.  They keep him worried all the time about something because he believes the things they tell him.  Another time he came home so distressed his mother was worried.  He finally told them that one of the boys said not to be surprised any time to see his father’s head come rolling down the street because in this town they kill someone nearly every day.  Vernon cannot adjust himself to such a group.  Perhaps the gang needs a little more guidance than does this one boy.  And so my problems go.

 

4/3/30

This is the week for exams for us.  Does that explain anything?  There are many papers before me but I am so flighty I can do nothing with them.

We are still undecided about closing school but I don’t think it will be.  There are a great any students absent but we are carrying on as best we can.  I had another good exposure to scarlet fever this morning.  If I am going to take it, I surely will now.

Had a letter from Ralph this week saying that he is wearing glasses now.  Can you imagine how he must look?  Funny old kid.  He has finally broken with Marie definitely.  For one I’m glad that is over if he doesn’t get into something worse.

 

4/6/30

Back to work again but I’m wondering what the week will hold for us.  They tell me of several new cases of scarlet fever that have developed over the weekend.

Took my lesson on Saturday as usual and then saw Mary Way.  She hasn’t heard anything from Phila. but expects word any time.  I do so hope she gets her position there.  It would mean a great deal to me.  You understand it isn’t because I love you less, but it will just be hard to be so far away from family.  I’ll need all the loving you promised.  That is at the bottom of the whole thing.  I wouldn’t be going but for that promise.  It would lead me to the ends of the earth, I believe- just to be with you.

I received a copy of the last letter sent to you and it appears everything is set for us.  I foresee no reason for us not getting this appointment.  Now that I have thought of it so long, I would be very much disappointed if we don’t.  I’m glad you are making all arrangements and I can enjoy the benefits of it.  It is always so hard for me to make decisions on important things.  That is one reason I need you so much – to look after my affairs.  The cost isn’t much if loving is all you ask.  I have an abundance of that to give and there will always be more.

The county agent sent word that the state is offering a free trip to Lincoln the first week of June to someone who has a certificate of achievement and one of appreciation in 4H club work.  I have both so he thinks I may be chosen.  He wanted to know if I would go if I was chosen.  I didn’t tell him I planned to go to Lincoln anyway.  I expected to go sooner but perhaps I can work plans out this way.

I still think June 10 will be the date.  A week later would be an inconvenient time for me and you wouldn’t be so happy either.  If any change is made it should be changed to an earlier date.

Ralph intends to be home at Easter time too.  They will be having spring
vacation and, as usual, he doesn’t have any work in mind so Dad is having him come home to build fences.  What would the poor boy do without Dad to turn to?  I’ll be glad to see him anyway.

 

4/8/30

Now that report cards are out of the way I can rest in peace once more.  How glad I am that only one more time remains.  I hope I get into nothing worse.

I’m not so sure it would be so wise for you to be around our school at a time like this but I suppose it would be no more dangerous for you than for me.  It would be unfortunate for you to take our disease to your town but I hope you not afraid to risk it.  There are eight pupils out of my classroom and in most grades more than that.

It appears as though we are fairly set for next year.  I really am looking forward to it.  Of course, I’ve had to tell the gang about it and they are all excited too.  Most of them are making some change next year but not a one has as interesting a prospect before them as I.  If all plans work out, our happiness will be complete.

The music contest will be at Wayne this weekend and you might know I’m planning on being there.  I’m driving Dad’s car out and taking several others with me.  Then Ray and Catherine are going home with me Sunday for dinner.  Wish you could be there with me.

 

4/9/30

I shall be anxious for the mail in the morning and yet I am afraid.  I want us to go to Phila. and still I don’t.  To be honest I don’t dare think about it or I get the blues so badly.  I don’t care what happens to me.  I’ll be disappointed if we don’t get the place and I shall feel badly if we do.  It is just a fifty-fifty situation.  I feel like weeping every time I go home…..

The free trip to Lincoln is mine.  My expenses are paid – nothing to do but have a good time.  I wish that week would come a little sooner than first week in June but since it is so, I must make the best of it.   The county agent came up last night to tell me about this trip and come to find out he is an old friend of Miss Borneson’s.  He graduated from the university last year.  Very young, good looking, has a car and I judge is an ambitious fellow.  Elly persuaded him to stay for supper and we invited Ray down and had a big time.  He took us all for a ride then we bought ice cream and had a feed at Mitchell’s Mr. Spence wants me to organize a club again and appoint another leader if I can find someone to take it.  I’m sure the girls are interested enough to in one.  Would like to take the on another year myself.

More sickness – I am quite disgusted.  How can we do anything in class work with so many of the pupils absent and then to have them come straggling back to school.  The people around this town do the most outlandish things.  They act as though it is a disgrace to have scarlet fever.  A pupil of mine came back today and her hands were peeling off.  I was furious.  Her mother says the girl didn’t have scarlet fever but she was sick long enough.  I have been directly exposed so many times this week that now I don’t care.  Everyone else is so careless, I don’t give a darn whether I get it or not.  They can get anyone they want to take care of this mess.  If you run the risk by coming up, I think I shall send you out home to stay Friday.  It will be too much of a gamble for you to stay about school.  I feel most sure Nurmie is having it right now – although h says not.  He has been missing several days of school this week.  Manages to be around about half a day and then he is in bed again.

Merl has accepted the position of superintendent at Dannbrog, Nebraska.  Good for him, yet I hate to think of him as superintendent.  Too much of a dog’s life.  Perhaps he can make people feel differently toward him but I wouldn’t be superintendent for a good deal more than he is getting.  Mother is all thrilled about it.  She has wanted him to try for it for some time.  I surely hope he makes good.

Learned that the piano part of the contest comes tomorrow evening so I’m going over to Wayne tomorrow for that then again on Saturday.  I’m looking forward to it with a great deal of anticipation.  I hope it will afford some relief.  If it doesn’t I shall soon be ready for those institutions that care for people with affected minds.

Our “happy home” has been broken up at Mitchells.  Three of the bunch left and are eating at the restaurant.  Three of the girls couldn’t get along so they left.  Never see anything of them anymore.  Just four of us left.

 

4/13/30

After so much foolishness and laughter I doubt if I can get serious enough to write a decent letter.  At any rate it will be of a different type than the last.  I should never have sent that letter but it was all I could write – feeling that way all week.  You will be grateful to know that I feel right with the world once more and can feel optimistic even though I have only 24 pupils left.  I don’t know how to teach with so few children before me.  Lord only knows how they will ever get their work made up before school closes.

The music I absorbed this week end has set me right again..  Went over Friday evening and heard the piano section of the contest.  It was delightful  Our boy from Allen won first.  We were at Wayne all day Saturday and heard all kinds of things.  I can think of nothing in the way of work that gives me quite as much enjoyment as a music contest.

Catherine and Ray were out home today with me.  We had more fun just fooling around.  Ray is the funniest thing when he wants to be.  The boys are quite fond of him because he is a farmer at heart and made himself right at home with them.  They like to hear him play the piano.

The only flaw during the weekend was the fact that Catherine got a little mean to Ray.  When she gets peeved she can act terrible.  She isn’t the right type of girl for him.  They are too absolutely different. She is always letting her temper fly over some little thing which makes it unpleasant for him. Sounds like I am falling for him myself, but I never think of him that way. He is like a brother to me.  If it was last year I probably would have gotten in difficulties, but I never felt that way this year.  You take up too much of my attention and thought.  There isn’t room for anyone else.

My hope is that you have not grown discouraged with me again after my last letter.  My thoughts were morbid an nothing seemed quite right.  Now that I have come out of it I am enthused again as you might know I would be.  What an ideal arrangement of work if there isn’t too much of it.  It doesn’t sound much like social service work to me.  It appears to be connected with school.  If we only knew definitely about it and just what was expected of us.  You know I have had no training in school music – singing nor very much in folk dancing or dramatics.  I might profitably spend my time in summer school if such could be arranged

Naturally I am glad our work doesn’t begin until September.  However, it doesn’t seem to me it would be profitable to go to Philadelphia for the summer.  It would cost us no more to make the extra trip than staying east, would it?  I don’t care what we do this summer.  You may decide.  Whatever suits you suits me.  I’m yours to do with as you choose so long as you love me and give me first thought occasionally.

I’m a bit worried – although it is none of my business – about Josie  When I was home she brought a boyfriend hoe.  Rumor has it that she is becoming infatuated with him but I hope they are false.  He is barely 21 while she is closer to 30.  His in not good looking, hasn’t an attractive personality and acts embarrassed to tears.  Of course this is all first impression but I should be very much disappointed if she is choosing a fellow like he appeared to be for anything serious.  Tell you more when I can see you and really talk.

 

4/15/30

Did you know your girl is an artist along with her other accomplishments (yah)?  I have just completed a work of art upon the window of my school room.  You shall see it when you come this week.  It is wonderful.  Really, I did try my hand at a little work with a little degree of satisfaction.  An Easter decoration.

What shall we do while you are here?  Shall I go to the city for my lesson? If you would rather just spend the day together, we shall.  Perhaps we will need the time to do all our talking.

We are still having lots of scarlet fever.  I have so many pupils absent I scarcely know how to teach.  My scarlet fever must have settled in my tooth.  My wisdom tooth has bothered me again.  It has to have its spells at regular intervals.  I suppose in the end I will have to have the thing pulled.

I haven’t written to Miss Lang yet for the main and simple reason that I don’t know what to write.  I’m going to wait until I talk with you.  You must tell me what I am expected to write.  I don’t know very much about any of those subjects except music and not much about that.  If I must be your advisor, you must do as much for me.

Your mention of George and Zola has made me wonder too.  What will they do?  I certainly wouldn’t want to be in  Zola’s place.  Life is going to be a hard struggle for them, it appears.  I’m afraid I’m not as grateful a I should be for our opportunities.  So much has been offered to us.  I read a story last night that might well be concerning myself.  About a girl who refused to leave her parents and old friends and the near tragic consequences  It was like a warning to me.  However, I am glad for the summer in Nebraska.  Seems to me by Sept. I shall be perfectly ready to go after becoming accustomed to living with you.  I will just naturally expect to go with you without second thought.

 

4/21/30

There is plenty that has happened about our town today of which I will tell you presently, but first I want to tell you that I have just penned a letter to Miss Lang.  You must commend me for obeying so promptly even though I neglected the duty so long.  Now I shall anxiously await a reply.

Now for the other  The school has been a bit upset today because Miss Borreson was taken home to Wahoo this morning ill with either scarlet fever or measles.  We do not know for such which.  She does not plan to be back this year.  I’m afraid it is going to be hard with her  And that isn’t all Helen Newlin has the measles too.  I am so sorry for her because she will miss so much that she had counted on at the closing of her senior year.  Very unfortunate and still I don’t suppose anything will be done about it .  We’ll all run the same chances of becoming ill.

Catherine has planned a linen shower for me Saturday evening at her home in the city.  She couldn’t have chosen a more inconvenient time for it as far as I am concerned but I don’t dare say anything because it will make her peevish to have to change her plans.  She made them all and then told me about it.  Of course it is darling of her to do it but I’m not especially crazy about the idea.  I want to be home Sunday because of my birthday.  I had already promised Mother.

I’ve been walking around in a dream today thinking of you and hoping you had a safe return home.

 

4/23/30

I am so tired this evening that I can scarcely move.  After school Catherine took her pupils out in the country for a picnic.  She asked Miss Cundy and me to go with her  We had more fun playing baseball, football and what not but now I am so very tired.  At any rate it is a healthy tiredness.  I have felt tired the last few day for no reason whatever.  No pep.  Mrs. Mitchell decided it was a bad case of spring fever.  It may be spring fever but my guess is there is a good deal of love sickness mixed with it.

Ralph came up and spent the evening with me last evening.  He sang and then we listened to the band play at the school.  I felt so badly when he left I had to cry a little.  I have decided to loan Ralph the money he wants and the rest you may use this summer as you see fit.  The other matter I think I shall drop.  You don’t approve under the circumstances so it will be dropped.

 

4/27/30 (includes clipping about the bridal shower)

What a weekend!  That’s all I have to say.  So much has happened that I am about wrecked.  I don’t know where to begin.   Perhaps I should begin back to Friday and tell you the pleasant things first.

I think I mentioned that my school children were planning a birthday party for me Friday afternoon.  They were so excited about it and had such a good time.  I let them plan it all just the way they wanted it.  One of the others made me a birthday cake an wrote my name on the top with dark icing.  It was all very lovely.  They called Mother and asked her to come to the party.  That pleased other so much that she baked a big angel food cake to bring up an then Dad was busy and wouldn’t bring her up.  Mother was so disappointed.

Saturday Dad went in to get his picture taken and I went in to take my last music lesson.  It was so rainy and gloomy that I felt like a gloomy cloud myself.  I hadn’t wanted to stay all night in the city but Mother thought I had better.  After dashing hither, thither and yon I finally went out to Meyers.  She met me at the door with the following story.  The first thing she said was, “it is all off”.  I just stood there while she rattled on.  Three of the girls had called and said they didn’t think they should stay because of the rainy weather.  Ray called from Allen saying he couldn’t come because he had planned to go with Kruse and Kruse was involved in so much that he couldn’t go.  Ray and Carol thought they could get a bus but learned it was too late.  Ray reported that Mrs. Ellis’ grandson had died with scarlet fever.  The school board and the health board met and decided to close school for the remainder of the year.  You can’t imagine how I feel.  I can’t make myself really realize that it is so.  It gives me such a strange, depressed feeling.  There is an actual gloom over the whole town mainly because of the death of this little boy.  He was in the first grade at school and was such a dear little fellow.  I can’t understand why it had to be so.  The family had been quarantined for several weeks except two girls who were in high school.  They stayed here with Mrs. Ellis.  One girl was a senior  Last Friday she took sick so they took her home.  She just thought she couldn’t bear it because the junior senior banquet was held Friday evening.  She had a lead in the senior play so they decided that day to drop the play.  It is too bad for the seniors; they will be denied everything that makes a senior year happy.  They will not even have commencement exercises.  The only thing left for us is to make out our grades, check in our books and we are free to do as we choose.  at first they thought the teachers would have to stay in town the remaining three weeks in order to draw their pay, but Mr. Kruse told me this afternoon that it wouldn’t be necessary.  This town will be a dead place for several weeks; the churches and theater are closed too.

By the time Kitty had told me all this I was completely flabbergasted.  Catherine was just sick.  She had everything planned perfectly lovely.  She was so disappointed she didn’t want to stay home so we went down town to a show.  I didn’t care to go but thought better not to say anything  We got home about eleven scared to death because we had seen such a scary show.  First thing we saw was a derby hat.  We thought Mrs. Meyers had Ray hide somewhere but it turned out to be Nurmie Vernal and Miss Hammond.  We felt plenty dumb but never dreamed that they would come through the mud.  We had a big laugh and decided to go on with the party.  We had our dinner at one o’clock this morning.  We were too silly for words.  The kids decided to stay all night but we didn’t get to bed until nearly three.  We all slept late this morning.  First thing I knew something hit me square in the face.  Nurmie had thrown a pillow at me but had disappeared by the time I came to..  Then the rumpus started.  Don’t see how Mrs. Meyers stood it but she said she liked it occasionally.  It made things a bit more cheerful for her.  Before things were over Nurmie pulled me over the foot of the bed and gave me a birthday paddling. I thought what a contrast to your birthday kisses.

Catherine and I decided to come back to town with Nurmie much as we hated to.  Mrs. Meyers packed up the remains of the party and we brought them out to Nurmie’s.  Vernal fixed it up and we had a late dinner.  You see our party lasted two days instead of one evening.

As far as the shower is concerned, it was a flop.  Ingram’s gave me a linen luncheon cloth, Ab gave me a linen hand towel and Meyers gave e six Madura napkins.  All lovely things.

 

4/29/30

You think of the dearest things  I thank you a hundred times for the little clock.  I simply love it and would kiss you more than twenty two times if you were here.  You are always getting m things I really want and have been wishing for.  Merl sent me a bottle of exquisite perfume.  Hope you will like it too.

It made me feel dreadful to think that you doubt me for a minute!  It isn’t as easy for me to express my thoughts as it is for you but that doesn’t mean that I don’t have them.  I never intend for my letters to sound cold.  They are not like yours but I never could write like you do. You know the song “You’re Part of My Heart”? It’s true.  Wherever you go, I’m following you.  That is I.

I feel so lost without school duties.  Yesterday I checked in books and all day my throat ached from near tears.  Many of the children I will not see before I leave and it hurts.  Those who have come in for their school things nearly break my heart with the things they say.  I have part of the grades made out but still have loads of work to do.  All the books are to be fumigated and then they must be put back in their places.  A tremendous task considering all the books in the school.  I wish Kruse would let us go this week but I guess we’ll have to put away books next week.

Mrs. Mitchell is having a birthday dinner for me tomorrow evening and has invited a few extras.  I hear rumors of an out of town show somewhere after dinner.  Wonder what we will do for my next birthday?  You must promise me right now twenty-three kisses the first thing in the morning.  My, I’ll be getting old!

 

5/2/30

I’m lonesome tonight.  Mother called this evening and said she didn’t think I had better go home this weekend.  Dad is afraid I might take a germ home.  I would go to you if I could get away from my work.  It would do me more good than going home but it appears I can do neither  We have worked like slaves all week on report cards and a hundred other reports that Kruse insists on and we are not through yet  I’ll venture it will take us most of next week also.  We can see no sense whatever in most of these reports.  We think he has just given it to us to keep us busy until time for our next pay check.  He keeps telling us he wants the books and building to be fumigated but we are told it would cost at least $200 to do it properly.  That will make the board think twice.  Many people are afraid to have us come ear but I don’t think we teachers are apt to carry it now.  It was much more dangerous I should think when we were with the children  Still, I would rather run no chances with Dad if he is afraid.  I could hang myself if I should take the disease home to him.  I did so want to see Dale’s class play tomorrow evening but Mother didn’t think I had better go down.

Last night we went to a show at Wakefield.  Perhaps we shouldn’t have but the town isn’t quarantined, why should we confine ourselves to its limits?  At dinner last night everyone gave me some foolish little do-dad for a birthday gift like a lollipop, little can of adhesive, a small folding drinking cup, a bar of soap, etc.  Had loads of fun.

Before we went to Wakefield I went to the post office for the mail.  No letter.  The evening was spoiled for me. Went back to Mitchell’s and there Frances had my letter.  Everything was rosy again. While our car load were waiting for the other car I had to read my letter.  What a sweetheart you are!  Never do I doubt but what you will do all in your power to make me happy when we are married.  I should indeed be an ungrateful creature I am not happy

Catherine has been out to dinner and I am glad.  I fear her statement is true concerning me.  She said I am a unsocial creature.   I almost believe I am.  I enjoy being alone – doing the things I want to do without having to talk.  I like your company because we can be together for long periods and I do to need to say anything at all.  I am not a good conversationalist I’ll admit, to my own detriment.  A good hostess must be able to talk when the occasion demands it  Usually when I am with people I can think of nothing to say and never anything clever.

I have not heard from Miss Lang since I wrote.  My picture must have been such a shock to her she hasn’t been able to recover enough to write to me.  Yes, I remembered to send the picture, although I was tempted not to.  After all, it is only you that really matters in this job so your picture was enough.

I cannot tell you anything about going to see you.  I can’t say when I will be through with this work.  Since the folks would rather not have me go home, I might spend the time with you if you are not afraid to have me come.

 

5/4/30

Your letter was certainly rich food for the heart.  What a joy it will be to live with you always and have you love me like that.  The idea of coming to see you keeps playing in my mind; I will come as soon as I can get away.  I want to be home for Mother’s Day, the last perhaps for some time.  Also I have been asked to play for baccalaureate next Sunday evening at Waterbury.

I would like to see your suit.  Won’t you show it to me if I come all the way to see you?  I know you will be perfectly handsome in it  When I think about it I have a panicky feeling.  I want us to be married at once before anything can happen to prevent it even though I know nothing could happen.  I’m impatient.

An answer has come from Miss Lang in reply to my letter.  She explains more in detail what is expected of me.  I will not have any regular classes to teach but will act as supervisor over a number of classes seeing that supplies are kept on hand and that attendance is kept up to capacity and, if not, discover the reason why.  I will have complete charge of the library.  What that means remains to be learned.  She said we would work from 3-5:00 in the afternoon and from 7-10:00 in the evening.  Sounds as though all the morning is free to use as we care to  After we arrive free evenings will be arranged for us which sounds fine to me.

She has suggested a change in my salary and wants an answer soon  I want you to tell me what you think best.  On most questions similar you will never say, but please tell me what you think best now.  You remember at first they offered me eighty dollars plus room.  Now they suggest sixty dollars plus room, board and laundry  Which do you think is the better offer?  It doesn’t seem as though there would be much difference but what do you think?

All the work we have to do about the house is keeping our own room in order and preparing our dinner on cook’s day out.  Not much, is it?  Then this is the way she described our room using her words: ” Your room is fairly large with a northwest exposure – four windows.  It has a built in utility closet, wardrobe, desk, chiffonier, three chairs and two cots.”  How do you like that?  Not so sure about that last statement.  What think you, lover?  She goes on to say “If you have some blankets I am sure you would be glad of the extra covering on some of our cold winter nights.”  I should say so if I must sleep alone (???)  Will bring the letter with me and let you read the whole of it  Sometimes I think this work is going to be a snap but again I think probably there is a great deal we shall discover that is not a snap at all.

I was hoe over the weekend after all.  Dad laughed at the idea of me carrying the germs home  Dale came up and took me to his class play Friday evening  It was quite good and I was so glad I could go.

As usual I see my arrangements are very indefinite so this is the way I’ll leave it.  If I decide to come Wednesday, I’ll wire you to have you meet me at Norfolk.  If I wait until Monday, I will go to Columbus and you can meet me there after school.  How does that suit your majesty?

 

5/6/30

A more disgusted faculty you never saw than the one you would find here if you came visiting  We are all most ready to pull up stakes and leave town and leave Kruse “in the soup”.  I never heard of such a superintendent in all my life.  I don’t think we are ever going to be through with this fool business.  We are having a grand time wasting time sitting around when we are not in mischief.  To tell you how much time I’ve put in, in the last few days:  Friday morning worked half hour and the remaining time a group of us played baseball.  I worked two hours after lunch and then played tennis in the gymnasium with Charlie, Carol and Ray.  Yesterday I finished reading a book in the morning and made one report which took about fifteen minutes’ times.  I don’t know what I did immediately after lunch (nothing I presume).  From three to six I played tennis again.  This morning I killed time down town shopping.  Bought the funniest dress.  Spent two or three hours on one report today and that’s all I’ve done.  Isn’t it a shame when I could be home helping Mother or spending my time with you?

I thought surely I could get away this evening ad I was going straight to you but no – Kruse has thought of something else he wants done.  I’ve given up now and think we’ll be here until the end of next week.  I have all my books ready to hand in so I just sit around doing nothing.  So much for that, and don’t set your heart on my getting to Monroe  I may not.

It is raining again tonight.  Lots of it.  This weather has turned my hair all on end  Ha some of it cut off this morning.

Your suggestion for witnesses is excellent with me.  Could never think of anyone I would want more.  I wrote to Esther about details last evening.  I shall be disappointed if they cannot be there but, of course, I understand how it is.

I was reading in the paper this evening about the uprisings in India due to the imprisonment of Gandhi.  I don’t understand it at all.  Why Ghandhi?

Perhaps during some quiet evening together you can tell me lots of things I should like so much to know.  Whether or not you answer my questions I should like to hear you talk.  When you are really in earnest about a subject you are so lovable.  It is so exciting to think that I can always be with you and share everything with you.

 

5/11/30  from Waterbury

In view of the fact that everything is so unsettled in my mind concerning what I shall do this week, I shall be on the safe side and write is case I should not find it possible to be with you.  It isn’t that I don’t want to come but I just wonder now if it is going to be possible.  First of all, I am financially embarrassed.  When I sent the check to Ralph, It sent it from my checking account at the bank.  Other things have come up unexpectedly making it necessary to check out practically all my account.  Last week I sent to Lincoln to draw out an amount from the loan but they haven’t sent it yet.  That is why I am out of funds and we don’t get our last paycheck until the end of this week.  Chance are the money will come in the morning.  If so, I will be there tomorrow evening – if not, I’ll not come at all this week but will wait to see you at commencement.  Mother hasn’t wanted me to go at all because she has a lot of work planned here for me to do.  Since I am leaving her this summer, I almost feel that I should do this for her.  Please do not mind too much, dear.

The roads are in terrible condition because of so much rain which is going to make it disagreeable for the baccalaureate services at Waterbury this evening.  I am going over with Dale but I don’t think all of the family will.  A Catholic priest will give the message this year.  The town agreed to alternate each year with a Catholic and a Protestant speaker each year.  Usually about half the class are Catholic students.

I have been having memories yesterday and today as I “cleaned house” in my room trying to discard everything I thought in wouldn’t want to take with me.  I have saved so many things during school days which make me recall lots of things.  Have decided it isn’t a wise thing to do reading over old letters and such things.  They should better be burned shortly after receiving the.  Today I have been putting pictures in my picture album.  Pictures are not so bad.  I dare say they will afford us hours of amusement when we are far from home and old friends..  I wouldn’t take a good deal for all the pictures I have collected of hoe, family, school and friends.  They are a source of great pleasure.

I must write to Josie and ask for her assistance with the wedding in the menial tasks bound to be connected with such an affair  I shall be of no account and Mother will not be able to do all of it.  I’ve thought of lots of details that I want to talk to you about.

I have had to make a slight change in the wedding due to Mother’s wishes and I must first ask your opinion  I told you there would be no wedding march.  Mother doesn’t like that but now there must be one.  I cannot think who to have to play but Helen Newlin.  What would you think of inviting Mrs. Newlin too?

5/15/30

It is well your letters came today and ended my desperation or my insanity.  I might have ended my life thinking “Now he will be sorry for the way he has treated me!”.  Well,   not quite as bad as that, but I would have called you to learn why you didn’t write.  Imagine going a whole week without a letter from you!  It proves even more truly how much everything depends on you.  My spirits were very low, then two letters came today expressing the same old love and everything seemed bright and happy again.  That love is absolutely essential to my welfare.  The promise of that love forever is the center of all my life now  Not even a month separates us now.  I want the time to fly quickly but this week has been long.

Did you talk to Dad about our plans and desires when you were here last?  You promised to but I forgot to ask you if you did.  I hope I get my pay check today and then can you guess what I would do?  I would go to Sioux City tomorrow and buy the dress.  Wouldn’t it be fun if you could help me choose??  I’m not setting my mind on any particular color or style until I see what I can get.  Oh, it will be fun.  Going to take Mother along to help decide this big question.

We went to the schoolhouse last night for supper and the tenth grade graduating exercises  There was lots of food and a good time was had by all.  I always feel slightly in the way at such a gathering  Either the women are older than I and have their babies to take care of or the girls are too young to talk with  Lawrence got his eighth grade diploma last night and is so proud of it as well he may be.  The speaker was a lawyer from Ponca.  Perhaps he was all right but he talked so  and on so many different subjects that I could scarcely sit still before he finished.  During the course of his speech he mentioned the financial situation, banking system, religion, character, home, occupations, conditions in the middle west, conditions in the east, and sights of Chicago, education, and means of travel, advancement since his day and on and on. Rambling.  Will go to Dale’s commencement tonight.

 

5/17/30

The folks went to Springbank this afternoon to attend Quarterly Meeting  The quarantine has been lifted from the churches but I imagine a good many people will hesitate about coming to the meeting  Several families have the fever yet but I haven’t heard of any recent new cases.

I have a duty to perform tomorrow which I always dread – singing for a funeral.  First I was asked to play but they needed another to sing and drafted e.  That is even worse than playing.  It will be the funeral of a man who used to be a barber in Waterbury and now has his home in Hartley, Iowa about a three hour drive from Sioux City.  The trip into that part of the country will be interesting for I have never been over in Iowa farther than Sioux City.

As you say, George and Zola are to be pitied knowing the circumstances.  I am very sorry for Zola.  Very unfortunate for George for I presume he is greatly in debt yet  Doctor bills are usually so large.  Our good luck for next year is not to be smiled at.  I wouldn’t trade places with anyone for worlds.  It will be perfect with you.  You don’t have to remind me of the nearness of the date.  I am fully aware of the fact.  I can imagine you being very calm and sure of yourself but me….  Sometimes I wish we hadn’t even planned a home wedding, then I wish it were over and we were living quietly together  Sometimes I feel actually panic stricken although I don’t know what about – not from fear but just everything in general.  If I only didn’t have to oversee everything and make the plans.  Mother will always say “how do you want this and how do you want that?”  until I don’t know what to do.  Why did anyone ever start this sentiment about home weddings?  Probably it is the proper place and deep in my heart I wouldn’t want it any other way but the planning and thinking about it is such a strain.  No dear heart, I’m not backing down on our plans; I’m just thinking out loud.  I want everything to be lovely for us to remember about our wedding.

In talking to Mother about our announcements she wondered if we would rather announce it ourselves because we have so many friends who the folks do not know at all.  That is true, but it wouldn’t make much difference, would it?  Tell me what you really prefer for I must order them soon  I told Mother I would have them ready before we left and she could send them out a little later.  Or would you rather wait until after we return from Canada?  Considering the number we want, it is going to be quite an item.

Dad has been teasing me about being hard up.  He said he was afraid I was going to have to call it off because I couldn’t afford to get ready.  I must confess I’ve been doing some “tall” thinking and figuring today.  To make it worse, notice came today of insurance soon due.  I wouldn’t tell Ralph of my troubles for anything  He would feel terrible.  I’m having to think twice about everything  Terrible state of affairs at such a tie but I shouldn’t have gotten myself so situated.  Plain dumbness on my part and now I’ll have to make the best of it.

Cathryn Chase wrote the other day asking for the dates we would be in Richmond so she could make plans for our visit.  They have moved into Richmond with his mother.  He is going to school during the summer and Cathryn will stay with his mother and maybe work in an office.  She hoped we would be there while Clarence was still home.  I would like so much to meet him.

Yes, we are scheduled to visit the Capitol building while in Lincoln.  I want to be in Central for the June festival and commencement too, if possible, but I must be in Lincoln by noon of Tuesday if I go with the group to the Capitol building.

 

5/21/30

You are a dreamer and what beautiful dreams.  Life will surely be wonderful with you as my companion  Just three weeks from today is the big day for us but I trust I shall feel better than I do now.

I have been so ill the last two days that I haven’t cared about anything.  I took cold last week.  Yesterday and today it has entirely gotten the best of me.  I have not felt so perfectly miserable since I had the measles.  I surely will feel better tomorrow.  We had planned to go to the city tomorrow but I am in no condition to go on such an errand now.

Do you really mean you are coming up this coming Friday?  Perfect! but couldn’t you fill your first mission by writing?  Only a week from this Friday I will go to Central City  After that the time will be as good as gone.

It is useless for me to try to write more tonight.  Don’t feel worried about me for I will surely be better tomorrow.  It was pure carelessness on my part that I have such a cold but it is a bit unusual that it should affect me so seriously at this time of year.

All my heart and soul is in your keeping, sweetheart.  Ruthie

 

 

 

1/1/30

Catherine came out home with me and we’ve just laid around and eaten lots of food.  Lazy but restful.  This evening we went to the show “Broadway Melodies”.  Ralph Chester and Lawrence came with us.  The show was dumb I thought.  Would have been better I suppose with vitaphone but they haven’t got that started yet although there is to be one.  The love making was so slow and dumb.  They don’t know how.  It made me miss you. You know how in the right way.

 

1/5/30

A most distressing thing has happened in school again and of course it had to come from my room.  I feel dreadful about it but it is no fault of mine either.  I only wonder if after all my teaching is worth anything – not in arithmetic, reading, etc., but in those qualities that make character.  Tuesday afternoon a billfold was stolen from the pocket of one of the baseball boy’s trousers.  We were reasonably sure it happened before school was dismissed so we all turned in the names of students who had left the rooms during the afternoon.  The fold contained over seven dollars and a number of papers such as driver’s license, etc.    Thursday one of the business men called Kruse and said a small boy was trying to cash a five dollar bill.  He knew of our trouble and thought it so unusual for a small boy to have that much money so called our attention to it.  The boy said another was hiring him to change the bill and keep still about it.  That boy said he found it on the school ground and produced the fold and money that he hadn’t spent but the papers were all gone.  Both of the boys are in my room and I’m sure I know which is guilty.  I have found him cheating in school work several times.  He is of low mentality and gets nowhere in his school work or seem to care or try.

I’m glad everyone around here likes you.  Mrs. Newlin thinks she had the best joke on you.  She and Helen were walking home with one of the high school girls one day and the girls were talking about the boy friends around the school last week.  Helen said she thought Miss Miler’s friend seemed very nice.  The other girl said “yes, but Benton’s guys is the cutest”.  Mow Mrs. Newlin calls you “Benton’s guy”.

Mrs. Heizer was all excited yesterday and had to tell me at once that she has all but landed a job for you in Central High in Sioux City (at least she thinks so).  She called some member of the board she knows and asked him if there would be any vacancies.  She told him about you and he wanted you to apply.  She is determined to have me next year also if I was that close to her she would probably drive me to distraction.  However, I certainly would like to have the work under her and Mother would be glad to have us so near home.

Ralph left Saturday.  It seems a bit lonesome around without him.  I surely hated to see him leave.  We have always been such pals.  Brother Ralph will always be a friend and pal of ours.  He is very fond of both of us.

 

1/6/30

Your letters are such inspirations and set me on wings of fancy.  I have just read the last two through again and wonder how I can wait even two months to see you again.  What do I honestly think of you?  I love you absolutely and whole heartedly.

I went to the show last night “Illusions” featuring Buddy Rogers and Nancy Carroll.  Our new theater tried out its new vitaphone this evening in a comedy.  It does not work perfectly by any means but quite nicely.  It will surely be a big drawing card for the show.  I don’t know whether that will be so good or not.

The Methodist church is trying to hold a revival meeting this week but I fear the faculty is not supporting the meetings very well.  The minister boards at Mitchell’s.  I think he is quite well fed up all ready because he is the rather radical type.  At the table last night he asked me if the teachers were always that noisy.  I am sure he thinks we all need saving which might not be so far from the truth.

 

1/12/30

I have just finished reading the book “All’s Quiet on the Western Front”.  I have never read and hope never to read again a thing as horrible as that.  It nearly drives me to desperation thinking of the horrors of war and I have nothing in my experience to compare to it.  I marvel that any ex-soldier can live even half way decent one.  In me you will find a willing aid in World Peace.

I was most excited and I as pleased as my youngsters were Friday morning.  We received the results of the sales of the Christmas seals.  We won a dandy volley ball.  The children are so proud of it.  They always want to know who can carry it down to the gym and who should bring it upstairs again.  They like to brag about it to the fifth and sixth grade.  They didn’t sell enough to get such a premium.

Ray and I are going to a piano concert in Sioux City Tuesday evening.  Meyers is going with us but will stay at her home during the concert so I will be safe, you see.  You know I would be anyway because I have given my whole heart to you.

 

1/13/30  Sent special delivery

I didn’t get your letter until this morning and it hurt me so much after what I wrote in my letter yesterday that I couldn’t be at peace until I wrote again.  I won’t be quite happy until I hear from you again.

Dear heart, I wanted to go to the concert tomorrow evening so much and the only chance I would have to go would be to take Ray along.  Mrs. Heizer got us special rate tickets to go and it never entered my head that there would be any reason why I shouldn’t go.  In the light of what you said perhaps it would be better for me not to go with Ray.  Believe me when I say it was no date as I think of a date.  In fact, I asked Ray to go because he is just beginning his study of piano work and it is good for him to hear good piano concerts and you know how I enjoy them.    He would never think of asking me for a date nor would I accept.  He thinks too much of you for that.

I wish I knew what to do.  I can’t do anything but think of you.  I had my ring cleaned Saturday and it twinkles at me just like your eyes do when they are full of mischief.  I truly wish you were here to talk to me.

 

1/14/30

This has been a blue day for me in so many ways.  I won’t burden you with the troubles for they are rather petty perhaps but it is those little things that make life pleasant or unpleasant.  Then after reading your letter this morning I thought of you and felt so sorry to think that you were feeling so badly and I feel so good.  I surely hope you are better now.  I am trusting your difficulty is nothing more than a cold.  Please take good care of it and be careful.  You are too old to do such a childish thing as have the chicken pox.    I thought I was bad enough but I can’t hold a candle to you with as much work as you have to do.  I don’t see how you handle it all.

Fortunately for me we had the afternoon off today.  We are having a real old blizzard with plenty of snow and wind.  It began last night and is still going strong.  The wind is howling.  By noon Kruse began to wonder if we hadn’t better send the children home.  I spent the whole afternoon making out grades and report cards.  I’m not quite done yet but I can easily finish now.

There is one little point I want to set you straight on, my dear, and that is about my future work in music.  Rest assured that you needn’t be responsible for that.  If I am not able to work it out financially myself, I won’t take lessons.  You are saving for your own education which you must think of first.  I am just going along.  I can’t make ends meet as far as my music is concerned, I don’t study.  Think nothing more of it.  I have told you a hundred times – I don’t want to be a burden to you.

 

1/16/30

After scouring and disinfecting myself to the nth degree I feel like I should be clean enough to satisfy even the most fastidious person  You ask why all of that?  A deep, dark secret.  We have case of the itch in school.  Horrid isn’t it but true nevertheless.  I’m not taking any chances so I used Lysol, camphor and no end of lotions and wash often.  Anything for protection.  Talk about school troubles.  I guess we are not the only ones.  Evidently you are beginning to realize some of the difficulties encountered by those in the teaching profession.  Now do you think Merl and I are “all wet”?  Some folk are not fazed by anything but force and that doesn’t always have much effect.

I am still having a dreadful time with my little thief.  I can’t trust him as far as I can throw a cow by the tail.  The minute I have my back turned he tried all kinds of monkey shines.

This week one of the boys who were expelled from school early in the winter came to the office demanding his football letter.  Kruse said no, not until he was ready to come back to school and act like a scholar.

The names he called Kruse do not bear repeating.   The way he behaved was terrible so Kruse had him arrested. They fined the young “upstart” and now have him in the “coop”.   The marshal is making good use of him just now cleaning off sidewalks.  The idea of a kid sixteen years old thinking he can run things the way he wants and simply ignore all the other authority.  What is this world coming to?

I received an interesting letter from Lillian yesterday.  Said she could scarcely wait until summer.  How wonderful it would be to be with Merl all the time and not just now and then.  I could tell her it is not so hot being with Merl.  I have lived with him for several years and never got so thrilled about it.  What a difference in people.

 

1/19/30

You shouldn’t say such things as you wrote in your last letter.  It frightens me. No one human being can deserve such devotion – not I of all people.  If you put me on that level you are setting a tremendously high standard for me to follow.  I must carefully guard every thought and action let I fall from the pedestal.  You live that way easily but for me it is more of an effort.    I wish that I could be all that you think I am.  I am wondering if you will wake up after we are married to find yourself terribly disillusioned. Mrs. Ellis said the other night, “Two people may know each other for years but in one year of married life learn more about each other than in all the years previous”.

I wonder how much of our attraction to each other is just purely physical.  I don’t care much now. It doesn’t make any difference.  We love sincerely and that is enough.  I am sure there is enough attraction through common interests and desires else we wouldn’t have stayed together so long waiting our time – even though a bit impatiently.

Naturally I have been thinking a great deal about our marriage.  We have gone over the question so often but still I am not quite satisfied.  It would be so much easier to be married at Carrell’s home without any fuss and bother but I have finally had to admit to myself that I would never be quite happy about it when I thought back about it afterward.  I really want to be married at home.  In the end I think Mother would be happier too.  I’ll venture she would want to have it to remember afterward.  I know that as far as you are concerned you had settled it that we should go to Carrell’s home.  You won’t mind the other way, will you?  We’ll only be married once and I would like to remember things in a pretty way.  At hoe I could fix things the way I wanted them – decorating, dinner, guests, etc.  I know a man detests fuss and frills and I do too in a way, but in my heart I would rather like it for just this once.  Outside the family there are only two people I would really like to have attend our wedding and they are Guy and Ester.  Do you suppose they could be there?  They would probably be married by that time if not back in CA.  I have thought of a lot of things I would like to have done if we are married at home.  I will tell you the details if you are interested in the plan.

So Simmons doesn’t get along very well.  That is strange (not if you think back to days in NCC).  She just doesn’t know how I wish she hadn’t moved over to your house.  She will cause you trouble.  Did you think further about finding another place?

When I told Mrs. Heizer about your failure in getting a position in SC she wrote out a list of towns near SC that she insists you apply to.

 

1/21/30

I forgot to mention in my last letter about the books you told me about.  You must do the choosing for yourself.  I can imagine you choosing Well’s History.  I wouldn’t be sorry if you did for I would like to study that a bit myself but probably if I had the same opportunity I would choose something else.  Anything and everything that is readable and good, I like.  We certainly have one common interest and aim and that is to have a library of our own.  We are making a brave beginning now, I think.

 

1/23/30

I’ve been walking around in a dream since I read your letter and haven’t been able to really think.  Of course I want to go with you next summer.  I really would be heartbroken to have you go away on such a delightful tri and leave me here.  The trip and experiences would be wonderful of themselves but to be with you too would be ideal.   Are you sure it would be all right for me to be there too?  The invitation didn’t include e.  Would you ask Bess about that?  What a lucky boy you are to have the honor of such invitations.

Then comes the old question of what would we do the remainder of the summer?  Please, honey, don’t solicit students.  It would be sure to take you away from me.  Couldn’t you find something else to do instead?

Wouldn’t it be nice if everything could be so wonderful and so happy but this old world doesn’t hold that for everyone.  Last Sunday evening a cousin of mine who lives across the hill north was taken to the hospital  His appendix had already burst and now there isn’t much hope for him.  His folks were in California visiting his oldest sister  Word was sent to them and they started back immediately  I am worried about Mahlon and deeply grieved.  He is such a good fellow and so young.  He graduated in Chester’s class last year.

Lawrence is coming up to Allen tomorrow to take county examinations.  I wanted him to go to lunch with me at Mitchell’s but he said he would be scared and couldn’t eat with all that bunch around him looking at him.  He needn’t worry.  They wouldn’t pay much attention to him.

 

1/26/30

You can easily imagine what has been on my mind most of the time since receiving you last letter.  I told Mother about your proposed trip for the summer and she said just what I expected her to say  She thinks it is a question for me to decide for myself.  She reminded me of the plans I had made for the summer and asked if I cared much about dropping them.  That doesn’t bother me like wondering what we shall do the remainder of the summer.  In fun I suggested to Mother that we might stay in the house on Dad’s other farm.  We would just stay there – not live.  The place is too much in ruin for that.  A family is living there now but I don’t see how they manage in this cold weather.  I told Mrs. Heizer a little of your proposal thinking she would regret it because she had counted on me being with her all summer.  Instead she thought I should go with you by all means.  If we are married in June I think I will drop my music at the end of March and she won’t say much about it considering the closing of school and everything.

There may be several advantages in that too.  I stopped to see a doctor Saturday about y difficulties.  He kindly informed me that it is nerves – party due to the after effects of measles.  I very seldom feel nervous and hardly think that is the trouble but I do know that something is wrong and I might as well blame it on that.  Mother suggested this proposed trip would be a good rest for me.  I suppose I wouldn’t need to attend meetings unless I wanted to so I would have a glorious time doing nothing for a while.

I’ve been thinking of wedding plans.  Don’t think I’m going ahead without consulting you.  they are for your approval.  I would rather not have a bridesmaid nor a best man – just us two.  I want Esther and Guy there for chosen witnesses.  If President Carrell couldn’t come up for the ceremony I would choose Mrs. Newlin and have Helen play our wedding march.  Perhaps Ralph would sing for us.  I want your little sister Catherine to b flower girl and carry the ring.  I can’t decide on a color scheme but can do that later.  I think I will ask Josie and Mary Way to help Mother with the work.   I won’t be good for anything.  I’ll have Catherine M. to help me dress.  we will invite only your folks and family and your folks  and family.  There are many friends and relatives I would like to invite but once started on that I wouldn’t know where to stop so think it better not to begin. What do you think?  Be perfectly frank in your opinions.  what color would you suggest for me to wear?  or do you have and preference?  I wish Lillian could be here to help me buy my clothes.  I don’t know what to get.  Perhaps you are saying what’s your hurry, there is plenty of time. If there is only four months left before then I must do all arranging now while I am in my right mind.  Even now I feel a bit panicky to think so little time is left.  I want to so much but still I hate to think of leaving home.

Mother and I were in to see my cousin.  He looks quite good and seems to be getting along fairly well but still has a long way to go.  His folks got back from California and feel greatly relieved to find him as well as he is.

 

1/28/30

You never could guess what I have been doing this evening.  I do this occasionally.  I have found a number of advertisements that I have answered.  Getting samples of things free.  You know, like samples of soap for the school children, plans for parties and games.  I get a kick out of it any little thing new interests the pupils so much.  That is one reason I do it and it also satisfies my curiosity.

I have been feeing a trifle depressed lately – can’t sleep well at night.  Then you still insist that you feel your duty is to work for the college.  If so, I think I had better remain at home for the summer as we have planned before.  If we were going to keep house next year somewhere near your work for the summer I would willingly stay in our home aloe while you traveled anywhere your work called you but, dear, I cannot consent to just “bum around’ anywhere I might find a place to stay with no permanent footing anywhere  Or I might come home after the conference while you work until school begins.  I don’t want to make plans hard for you but you must consider these things in making plans for the summer.  As I said before, you will be working and so busy this question won’t bother you but for me — What shall I do?  I must know definitely.  I say this in deepest love and sincerity  You feel that you must do this work for the college – then by all means I want you to do it but I had better wait my time until later.  Once I really have you, not even your sense of duty will keep you from me.

 

1/30/30

I haven’t been especially happy this week.  I’ve had noon duty this week which is terrible, stating it mildly.  It doesn’t give a person a chance to breath from morning until night.  Catherine and I have nearly had some spots this week.  Last night she wanted to go to the show and I didn’t care to but I went anyway just to keep peace in the family.  The show was good but then I don’t get to practice and read.  Constant late hours are the root of my troubles now, I’m afraid.

Boy I let fly yesterday at some of Catherine’s’ pupils.  I have to herd them in the room every time the bell rings and we mixed yesterday.  I was so angry I could have picked them up and slung them against the wall.  Some did get knocked up pretty well but I noticed today they lined up properly without being told. It surely burned me up and I was so tired after school I couldn’t do a thing.  One little girl was quite sick this morning and had to be tended to, a couple of my boys had a real old fight this noon, etc., etc.,  They say a teacher has a snap of it.  Bosh.  Still there is something rather fascinating about it.

 

2/2/30

I knew there would be a letter waiting here for me when I returned this evening  I was so anxious to hear what Bess had to say about me going to Canada too.  I’m no good at deciding anything.  Between us we just seem to go round and round.  Now that the possibility has been offered, I would a little rather be married in the spring and go to Canada with you and I guess I’ll just leave the rest of the summer to you.  That will be an easy way out of it for me.  How would you like that?  I think by all means you should attend the conference because another opportunity like that may not come again soon. Of course I would like to go with you if I can.  If you went to the conference alone and we were married later, it would be rather an expensive summer for you.  Isn’t it horrid to always have to be thinking about money?

I can’t decide anything until you know what you will do and you want to know what I am going to do.  It’s a vicious circle.  I imagine we will learn this week whether we were re-elected or not.  I don’t know of a one on the faculty who wouldn’t be re-elected.

If you want to send in my name with yours to an agency you may.  If an agency gets you a job they get a good slice of your wages  That would be worth it if they could find work for both of us.  Did you ever investigate work in Oklahoma as you suggested last year you might?

2/3/30

I told you that our school board elected teachers last week.  Mr. Kruse came in to talk to me this morning and tell me the results of the meeting.  I was re-elected with a raise for which I am very glad, of course  All the grade teachers got a raise with the exception of one who reached the maximum grade salary.  All the high school teachers were re-elected with the exception of one – wait until I tell you who and consequently the why for of this letter.  Just a few minutes ago I was up to the building with Catherine getting some supplies and I sang in the hall forgetting there was another board meeting  I may get called on the carpet yet.  To go back to the important thing….by the way, I’m feeling much better this week than I have consequently much peppier.  Think I’ll go to the show this week on my own accord.  It will be “The Thing Called Love”.  Perhaps I can find out about this thing that has us in its grasp so securely.

But seriously, Ingram was the member of the faculty who was not re-elected.  That is, he received a complimentary election with the understanding that the position is open.  I couldn’t get that out of my mind all day.  As far as I can see, you could fill the place to the letter.  You could handle basketball beautifully.  You surely could do as much with football as Nurmie has and if you couldn’t teach manual training better than he has I won’t marry you.  Nurme is supposedly teaching physics and I’m not sure you are prepared for that, are you?  Considering everything, I think this is an ideal job for you.  The present salary is $1450.

After this years’ experience I would really enjoy coming back here to teach again.  I know I would if we were not getting married this summer.  I don’t know just what you would think of this town but we could surely live through one year at least.  What do you think?  Best of all would before you to come up and have a direct conference with the board  Now if you want them to consider us both, make it plain that I would like very much to come back to my work.  If they won’t consider that they might consider your application alone if you want them to.  Mother would be please to death to have us so close home.  Act soon. We will probably have until the first of the March to sign or reject our contracts for next year.  The more I think about it the more excited I get.  Will wait in suspense for your reply.

 

2/4/30

I’m so anxious to know what you are thinking.  I’d like to see you handle the work here.  I’m sure you could make it amount to something.  You seem to have had wonderful success with your basketball work this year and that ought to be a good recommendation for you

The whole faculty went to the show “The Thing Called Love”.  It was a good show but not at all like the thing we call love.  During the picture I could not help but think of our own affairs  I cannot see you acting as that man acted and talking as he talked.  If you ever did I think it would break my heart.  Chances are I would be angry and let fly too and so it would be far into the night.  I hope I have sense enough to control myself and never cause a scene between us.  Real love isn’t going to let us be like that.  We are always going to remember our agreement that we will kiss first and then discuss the point of disagreement.

 

 

2/5/30

I went to the post office to get the mail this evening and was well rewarded.  Your letter would have been sufficient but I had one from Merl also.  Had a letter from Ralph this morning.  Getting letters from both brothers in one day is quit  shock to me.  Something that happens once in a life time.

At last Merl has told me what his plans are for the summer.  Of course I’ll have to tell you but we had better keep it to ourselves for evidently he isn’t broadcasting them.  He and Lilian will get married as soon as school is closed and you would never guess where.  In the Friends church at Denver.  President Carrell will officiate.  Who would’ve “thunk” it?  Long live the bridegroom.  How he happened to tell me was this way.  I wrote to him asking him if he and Lillian could come to our wedding in June.  They plan to take a trip through some of the southern states but he said they could cut that short and come back in time for our wedding.  I have written to Lillian to the same effect but haven’t heard from her yet.

You see what I am doing?  You might have known I would after you suggested the possibility of being married early in June.  To be perfectly honest with you, I can’t think of it any other way.  All along I have just been trying to decide what we should do that would be best.  I believe I have almost made up my mind for sure to unite our love  the sooner the better. and let you worry about the rest of the summer.  If you are willing to give up that retreat and its pleasures just to have me go to Toronto with you, I’ll let anything go which might have come up for me during the summer.  Then we could be together all summer. After your enumeration  of all our fine qualities, I feel like we could most rule the world if we chose to do so.  I grant we have a lot in our favor.

Do you know a girl by the name of Dorothy Kimbal?  Ralph met her in school recently.  She asked Ralph if he knew you.  He answered that he guessed he did slightly.  He had roomed with you three years and is going to have you for a brother-in-law.  Interesting.

 

2/7/30

Just a quick note.  Nothing interesting to write about.  I didn’t try to write last night because Ray came over.  Had to listen to Ray and Catherine quarrel.  They were trying to order some valentines from Montgomery Ward and they had a dreadful time.  They couldn’t agree on anything.

Had a letter from Lillian yesterday explaining some more things  She told me I was a fool if I don’t go to Canada with you.  I am going with your consent, sweetheart.

 

2/9/30

Dear Mr. Ferguson,

This is to inform you that you are condemned to go unkissed for an indefinite length of time for your wicked misbehavior toward the only sweetheart you have who loves you with all her heart.  Your own conscience tells you that you have done wrong.  However, if you are sufficiently repentant perhaps your sentence will be shortened.

You know you are forgiven before you ask.  Why should I care if you write to Mrs. Carrell or anyone else?  That doesn’t worry me any in the least.  You know I have more faith than that in you.  Besides you know what I’ve always told you about the way you and Mrs. Carrell act.  President and I will show you two something someday if you don’t watch out

Yes, I have so far made up my mind that I have already bought some of my clothes.  I know you will think that is foolish and taking a good deal for granted but I’ll tell you how it happened.  Yesterday I went shopping for a dress.  I would have to be in style you know with a long dress.  I have been looking for one for some time but had almost given up in despair.  I couldn’t find any that fit or suited me at all.  Yesterday  went into a classy little shop and in fifteen minutes had tried on several dresses that fit me as though they had been made for me.  Then I couldn’t decide which one to take so I took tow.    One is a black and white outfit that I will wear now  The other one I am going to keep until spring and it will be just the thing to wear at the conference and in our journeying about.  Buying it now will be saving in nervous energy and time.  I don’t like to shop for clothes because I usually have such a hard time.  What ever shall I do when I look for my wedding dress!  What kind of a dress would you like for me to wear?  Should it be white?

Lillian said Merl said hers should be white so white she will have.  She is going to Denver to get her clothes and wanted to know if I didn’t want to go with her.  I hope I don’t have to go that far away to buy my clothes  Sometimes I feel like most anything would do just to get it over with.  You had better help me choose.

Catherine told me something tonight that has made me think that perhaps I should get out of this town.  Not much worried.  It won’t make a great deal of difference to me whether I stay here or not – meaning that I won’t be heartbroken if we aren’t here in town next year.  I would really like to see you get this job however and show these folk a thing or two,

I don’t see why the Allen basketball team hasn’t done better this year.  They haven’t played well enough to get into the tournament.  They lost their game to Waterbury Friday.  Waterbury is undefeated yet this season in conference games.  Dale is proud of course but I think he plays very well.  They play like they know what they are about.

 

2/11/30

Your letter this morning made me very happy.  I was so anxious to hear what you would say about my decision.  I think you must have known how I would decide. There will be many changes taking place in my mind before final arrangements are made no doubt so don’t get confused and bewildered with all my statements.  There are so many little things to think about that are necessary to make everything run smoothly.  This is one time there must not be any flaws of any description

When Dad was taking me to the train Saturday he was asking me about Merl and his plans and then he told me something about his ambition for the boys.  I’ll tell you about it some time.  It came with something of a surprise to realize that the folks are not working for themselves but everything is for the boys  It isn’t the pleasure of accumulating for self but for the joy of giving  It makes a worm glow around my heart to know that I have such parents.  During this talk would have been the time for me to talk to Dad about my own approaching marriage but somehow I couldn’t just then.  I had a feeling that Dad would feel badly.  Have you ever talked to him about it?  If you haven’t, do you think you have done the fair thing to him?  I love Dad a lot and I think we should both talk to him about our plans.

You are to be congratulated upon the excellent standing you have in that community.  It is something to have people ask you to accept a position such as has been almost as good as offered you.  It doesn’t surprise me at all.  I expect such things will happen a good many times in your life.  Your worth is quickly seen and people are eager to make use of it.  I shall be proud to be the wife of such a man  I love you and will always be your greatest admirer.

 

2/13/30

You are very kind to supply my sweet tooth for a while.  Your valentine was lovely or perhaps I would be more appropriate for me to say it was delicious.

I anticipate a merry time tomorrow.  The children are quite excited about valentines  The box is brimful now and I know many of the children haven’t brought their valentines yet.  It is great sport to watch their pleasure.

My heart goes out in sympathy for Catherine tonight.  She received word last evening that her father has had a stroke and is not able to speak or move one side of his body.  He was found in his car in Hartley, Iowa and was taken to a hospital there.  Catherine is very broken up about it and declares she knows he will never get well again  I don’t blame her for being worried but I wouldn’t take that attitude.  She taught today but I know it was a dreadful day for her.  She felt so badly that Mr. Kruse took her home to Sioux City to be with her mother.  Her mother is very emotional and taking on dreadfully.  I can sympathize because death came so near entering our family last spring only a year ago.

 

2/16/30

I am feeling rather happy and elated but don’t know just why.  I have my opinions but won’t tell you just now.

I hoped that my feelings were a good omen concerning Catherine’s father but I fear not.  She did not come back today and sent word that her father is worse.  Truly I hope her father’s condition will be improved sufficiently for her to return on Monday.

I look with unusual eagerness for your letters now  There are so many interesting things they might contain about various things.  I’m always interested in the things you are doing but your actions now are so closely linked with my future that I cannot refrain from being overly eager.  Scarcely four months left in which we must be dependent upon letters to convey our thoughts and feelings and then we shall be together forever to share everything.  I often wish that I might take a peek into the future and see just how it will work – you and I living together.  You have expressed such beautiful hopes for our lives.  Truly it will be a joy.

Your letter made me sure you have forgiven me of the wrong I did you last year and that you will be just as happy now.  I do not know why I felt as I did then.  I didn’t want to be married and for a tie I didn’t care how you took it..  I knew I was hurting you and your replies always made me want to cry but still I wouldn’t give in.  I am a willful creature and , as Ralph says, it will be the one thing that will cause me trouble if anything does.

I dream about you and my heart races.  I remember one night in particular at Young’s Park last summer.  I was sitting in a swing waiting for you after meeting one evening.  Presently out of the darkness you called my name and then came to me.  As you stooped to kiss me there I realized how tender, sweet and real your love for me is.  There is always a tender caress in your hands that I dearly love.  I cannot ever imagine harshness in them.

2/18/30

I am as dense as a block of wood tonight.  I’ve had a cold for some time and can’t seem to get rid of it.  I feel fine during the day but when evening comes I feel punk.  I have fever and nearly bur up.  I am going to be inoculated for scarlet fever tomorrow.  I have put it off as long as I feel I dare but I have such a horror of the disease that I have decided to take this precaution.  Nearly every day another family is quarantined and children are taken out of school  We rather thought the thing had died out last week but it still appears this week.

Catherine came back last evening although her father was no better.  They brought him home Sunday and she said it nearly set her crazy to be around home.  There was nothing for her to do and he didn’t know her so she came back to work.

John, you accuse me of being changeable.  I don’t think I am a bit more than you are.  I was very much surprised at your present proposed occupation.  I didn’t suppose you ever thought of that now.  I guess the trains have a lasting hold on all you folk.  Of course it is an idea to play with and may work out very nicely.  Keep it in mind.  However, this came to my mind.  If you take up that work you are more apt to lose sight of your master’s degree or any further school work. If you took up work with the railroad next year would we live in Columbus?  That would be a happy arrangement, don’t you think?  You decide.  I shall be happy and try to be content if I may have just a few things: give me a piano, home, and you to love and I shall make out very nicely.  I will try very hard not to worry about finances.  There are lots of interesting things I can do.

 

2/20/30

In the midst of exams again an I am about ready to fly.  Nothing makes me quite so nervous as to correct exam papers when there are so many.  If you could see my hair you would know at once how I have been spending the last two hours.  I run my fingers into my hair until it is a mess to behold.  Just lately I have been discovering how true the doctor’s verdict was.  Now with Catherine feeling as she does I am constantly kept on edge.

Mr. Meyers is still no better.  So far he doesn’t recognize anyone or anything so they don’t have much hope for recovery.  Catherine had an opportunity to go in to the city this evening so she went leaving her work piled sky high.  Poor kin – she doesn’t accomplish much of anything.  Her mind is constantly at home.

I spoke too hastily in my last letter for I didn’t have the inoculation done after all. The doctor at Wakefield talked me out of it.  His personal opinion was that it wasn’t worth the risk of a serious reaction.  I know of no recent cases of scarlet fever and we hope the scare has died down.

I suppose you are having the same problem in your school that we are having here since the weather is so warm and that is this game of marbles.  What do you say to the boys who play marbles for keeps?  How should one talk to them about it?  Frankly, I don’t know.  I have no strong convictions either way.  Kruse talked to my goys today and several told him they didn’t know any other way to play.  What do you think about it?

It looks as though your proposed visit must be postponed indefinitely.  I wouldn’t want you to neglect your work nor lessen your ambition one bit, but it is disappointing, you know.

 

2/23/30

I am very much worried about Mrs. Heizer.  She wasn’t a bit well Saturday but was trying to keep up her work.  She is having the same thing I am, a cough that comes from the depths and makes the whole body so sore.  Mrs. Heizer is so frail that anything like that is doubly hard on her  Dad has the same thing and coughs just like he did when he had the measles.

You certainly have done some work to be proud of.  No wonder the town is interested in having you return next year.  Of course they like to have someone who will do all the work.

Mrs. Smith told me Saturday that the superintendent at Waterbury was not re-elected and that they are looking for some new grade teachers.  The supt. this year put out a good basketball team but that was all that was any good about the man and as a help to the community he was nothing.

 

2/24/30

My heart longs for you tonight for comfort and assurance that you are well and strong and by my side.  I always feel so when grief and sorrow has come to others. Word came this evening that Catherine’s father died late his afternoon  I am so sorry for her sake.  God alone knows why such things must happen.  It will be comparatively easy for the girls to forget their sorrow and live their lives happily but poor dear Mrs. Meyers is left alone in the world with very little left to live for  Imagine how alone she must feel.  I do not see how I could live without you  If anything should happen to you it might as well happen to me too for life would be void without you.  You have – and most men do have – your work quite independent of the home.  My work and all my hopes for the future are centered around you and the home we make together.    I must see you soon.

 

2/25/30

Now that you know what your opportunities are for next year, I’ll tell you what I think.  Not that my decisions on such matters amount to much but I want you to know how I feel.  I don’t imagine that you have heard anything from Kruse and I hope not.  What would you think if I told him not to consider your application and that I would turn my contract back unsigned?  I’m sure they would not consider hiring me again and I’m not so certain I want to come back anyway.  The only thing that tempts me at all is being close to the Heizer Music School and near home.  I wouldn’t care to live in this town without working and we couldn’t get a decent house to live in anyway – at least one that is at all modern.  Just say the word and I’ll tell Kruse this  I’d like the opportunity to tell him.  That man and I get along less and less every week.  He doesn’t even give me a chance to be nice to him anymore.  He doesn’t eat at the Mitchell’s anymore.  To tell the truth, I don’t believe I want to teach at all next year – so far domesticated have I become (imagine me saying that last spring).

I would love to live in Central City. Haven’t I told you may times that I wish we might always make that our home?  I like the town, the college is there, we have many close friends there, and our church is there.  It would suit me perfectly.

I think as you do that we would be very happy in Fullerton.  It would really be starting a new life for we know very few people there  No doubt we would find much to make life pleasant  It is up to you to decide what to do.  I am entirely out of the question, seems to me, as far as work is concerned.  Makes it nice for me but oh my poor husband.  I can try to make a ho anywhere you find the kind of work you are satisfied with.  As I have said before – what I know about housekeeping and home making isn’t much.  I’ll need all my time learning to do that.  We will want to entertain friends but I’ll have to learn a lot about the culinary arts before I can do that.

We learned today that Catherine’s father will be buried Thursday afternoon.  Mr. Kruse is asking the board if school may be dismissed that afternoon to allow the teachers to go.  I feel I should go because Catherine and I have always chummed together and she would expect me.  Kruse made it a point to tell me this morning that if all couldn’t go, not one could  I’d say something else but I guess better leave it unsaid.

 

2/28/30

School was dismissed this afternoon and all the faculty went in to Mr. Meyer’s funeral.  The service was beautiful and the family held together wonderfully well but I felt so sorry for Catherine.  I just thought I couldn’t stand it.  I felt so badly when we came home and so did everyone else so a group of us went over to Dixon to see a play given by the high school.

I am so sorry about your aunt’s death but it was not a shock to the family surely. I wish you were here to go to a basketball game with me tonight but I suppose you will be very much excited about your tournament.

 

3/1/30

While I’m waiting for the train this morning I’ll write a few lines…the train came and now I’m situated at Davidson’s.  There is plenty of time before I need to go up to Mrs. Heizer’s so after a while I ‘ll move along and get some lunch.  Wouldn’t I love to have you here to lunch with me?

Do not hesitate to ask for a position for me if there is a chance for me to get one.  I like to teach and would just as soon – would rather under the circumstances but I wanted you to know that I would just as soon keep house for you.  The chances for me to get a school are so slim that I wanted you to know I wasn’t counting too much on that.  I will be perfectly happy any way things are settled since I will be with you.  I want you to settle things but I’ll do anything you want me to do to help you.  I have done and said a lot of dumb things but I am not so dumb that I can’t see the reason why I should work if I can get a position.

Kruse brought the contracts around to be signed last night.  I turned mine in and told him nothing  He won’t talk to me decently anymore and I’m not breaking my neck to get in his way.  He is down on the whole gang and so are we on him for the dirty deals he has given us the last few weeks.  None of the high school teachers want to come back if they can get other jobs.  He wants a gang of Wayne teachers anyway that don’t have so much mind of their own (meow).  I could say a lot of things but I won’t.

 

3/2/30

I am so anxious to see you and be with you again.  Don’t think there will be much time to talk.  Perhaps the wisest thing would be for you to wait a little later so that the time will be a little evener divided between now and the time we are married.  I never say that but what I get a thrill to think that it will really be so in such a short time.

Catherine came back this evening.  She has come through her sorrowful experience much better than I thought she would.  She has strong stuff in her make up that I didn’t realize she had.

I was glad to find Mrs. Heizer much better this week than last.  She said she hadn’t been able to give some of her lessons.

Since the closing of school work will soon be upon us, I am thinking seriously of giving up my lessons as much as I dislike to.  Then it will leave Saturday free for other things.  I will be needing that time you know.

I acquired another new pupil myself last evening.  She will begin her lessons next Wednesday.  That gives me a pupil for every evening after school  3/4/30

It seems most too good to be true to think you are really coming to see me this week.  I hope the week will not drag because I want the time to hasten.  I am sorry that I insisted on your coming if it is apt to spoil anything for you in connection with Bess.  It really would have been well for you to talk with her.  You may change your plans if you want to.  What shall we do while you are here?

We went to the show tonight.  Buddy Rogers in “Half Way to Heave”.  Not as good as I thought it might be but fair.

You certainly get yourself involved in things  I never saw anyone to compare to you.  You seem to have arrived at the place where you most run the town.  You are always telling about some new thing you have begun.  Will there ever be an end to it?  I am jealous of your time.

I get a funny feeling when I realize other teachers are coming here after my job  A girl from Waterbury was here today and learned I am not coming back.  I thought I wouldn’t mind a bit giving up my work here but I do.  I wouldn’t change plans for anything because I want to be with you too much but I don’t like to hear about those who are coming in.  Selfish I suppose.  If you stay at Monroe I rather hope I can teach too  My opinion keeps changing you see, with new developments.  Do whatever you find that you think best.  Thank goodness someone in the family will be level-headed and sensible.  I’ll trust your wisdom so never mind my chatter.

 

3/10/30

Nothing else matters now but you.  I can foresee nothing to lessen our joy soon to come yet I wish it were true now to make sure.  So much depends upon our marriage now, as far as I am concerned that every day only adds to my impatience.  You are strong to have endured as many of the carelessly indifferent things I have said and done but most of the happiness I desire for myself now is in making you happy.    I wonder if I shall ever learn to give in graciously when my will is crossed but I shall try for family harmony’s sake.

Hope you r day has been as satisfactory as mine with one exception; I have wanted to be alone today without the chatter of the gang on school problems, applications, new jobs, school discipline, etc.  These are not the days for hermits (or hearing your correction, heritresses).

 

3/12/30

In my box this morning I found a letter that I have read and re-read many times.  It is indeed heart balm and sure cure for heart ache.  You are a darling sweetheart and I adore you.

I wish you would not take on so much work.  You will wear yourself down  – I speak from experience.  Remember what I had last year?  I know you love to do the things you are doing and I am proud to know that you are capable of doing them but I also want a strong lover husband.

As far as I am concerned, I would be very glad if you could get a position in Wakefield.  It would fix things beautifully for me but I can understand why you might not care so much about it.  Somewhere near Columbus or Central City seems more like home to you, doesn’t it?  My interests are more or less centered here not saying that I couldn’t become established in another place.

Another new pupil began her musical studies last evening.  I thought she was going to be very dumb but she began very nicely.  I haven’t gotten very far in my own practice this week  The lesson seems extremely difficult for some reason but I assure you I don’t mean to get stumped on the last grade.

 

3/13/30

My music has been a great consolation to me this evening.  Ellis’ have been gone and Catherine is at play practice so I have had the evening to myself.  Being alone gives me an opportunity to play as I choose.  I do to my heart’s content until I reach the limit of my nervous energy.

After correcting a few papers I went over to the school building and watched play practice.  I can’t say that I am wild about the play – too much family quarreling and meanness.  Even though it is only a play I dislike it very much.  I vow in my heart I shall never talk to anyone that way and above all others my husband.  It would be a dreadful way to live.  There will be differences and plenty of them but we must remember to settle them peacefully.

Only nine more weeks of school  In many ways I regret it for I dislike to lose this group of splendid youngsters I have this year but I probably wouldn’t have them again anyway even if I did stay.  More and more I am having to catch myself from dropping into day dream .  It would really be too bad if I began to neglect my work.

 

3/16/30

In order to sit and enjoy your letter I had to clear out a space large enough to see into the mirrors at least.  that is one failing of Catherine’s I simply cannot grow accustomed to.  Her belongings are always scattered everywhere – no place for anything.  I have put them away and if she doesn’t like it she still have to learn to put them away herself.

I went to the play given by the Junior Aid here in town.  It was very well given and very entertaining  Catherine certainly made the most of her part.  Her reputation as an actress is well established.  I went to the Waterbury
play on Saturday.  I didn’t care so much for it although it was good.  The players were not as good as the Allen cast.  Dramatics of all kinds ins interesting and now I wish I had taken more of that sort of thing while I was in school  When I think of my college days now I wish I had done a good many things differently.  If I could have known then what I know now I would have planned my work more advantageously.  Perhaps even yet I shall have the opportunity to make up those things I would like to have taken.

How interesting that our minds should have gotten together on the same date of the important event.  I just told Mother this morning that I had finally made up my mind to the date and we were looking it up on the calendar.  Considering all things, I think June 10 will be the day.

 

3/18/30

The possible state of affairs for next year seems almost too good to be true.  Do you suppose it will really work out?  I am not so anxious about teaching two grades again but with so few it might not be so bad.  Dear me, I would scarcely know what to do with such a few pupils  What salary would I get  You should insist on a raise in your own salary.  Lt me know if there is any chance for work and I’ll be right down.  The children are beginning to find out that I am not coming back.  They make it so difficult for me.  I tell them they will have a better teacher next year  I wish the year were over now

Your father is to  congratulated upon his promotion.  It is splendid for him but distressing for the family to have to move again.  It will be sorry if they move, providing we are in Monroe next year.  It would have been the next best thing to being near my own home.  I will miss Mother dreadfully.  These last two years have spoiled me again.  I do like to be home.

 

3/20/30

The problem that distresses me now is a popular one – money.  It isn’t a question of how to get it, but what to do with it.  I haven’t much but what shall I do with that little that I have.  I think I told you that I have been putting it in the United Savings and Loan in Lincoln.  You’ve seen what has happened to several loan associations and one in Lincoln too  Mine is alright as far as I know but is it safe after all?  If I did draw it out, what would I do with it  Rumors have it that the Waterbury bank is near collapse ad I’d be just as apt to lose it there.

A peculiar idea has come to me so I’ll pass it on to you.  I might draw out the amount and you could use it to eradicate you indebtedness,  It would be paid back later, you know, in the things I’d ask you to get for me which I otherwise would probably not ask for.  Isn’t that a bright idea  I am sure you would be a safe investment

I suggested some such thing to Ralph but Mother put a stop to that.  She said my money would be too much tied up and it would be too long before I could get it again  The no doubt would be true with Ralph but with you – you would be at my mercy and able to pay back whether you felt so inclined or not.

 

No fooling.  Ben has made me feel a bit uneasy by saying that if he had money in  savings he would draw it out at once.  I mean to talk it over with Dad when I go home.  Mary Elis lost a good deal in one of the concerns that closed in Lincoln.  It was a good deal of her savings from two years’ work at the store.  I also heard that Mrs. Newlin lost in the same loan company.  It really is serious and is enough to make anyone worried.  Please advise me.

Now on to the old subject of what to do next year.  Your board is really trying to make it worthwhile for you to stay at Monroe it seems, but what about me?  I don’t want to complain, but I would rather not consent to live in one or two rooms with no outside work to do.  I would be a raving maniac and you would find it necessary to put me in chains before the year would be half over.  I would have to have something to do to keep me busy and keep me out of mischief.    Either I’ll have to have a permanent job or a house to keep.  I know what a task it is to find a house to rent in a small town an when you do find one it usually isn’t much with no conveniences.  How can one live decently without a bathroom in the house?  I perceive, lover boy, that when we are married our problems have just begun.  Such things as finding a house, furnishing it ad keeping it in running order will not be so easy.

Now I know I promised not to say anything and let you engineer affairs, but there are some things which would not be so pleasant, you know.  I am hoping one of your present teachers moves on.  I want her job and need it to occupy my mind.

You were very kind to return my comb, you thief.  I discovered your other crime you committed Saturday morning before we left home.  I immediately thought of a means for revenge but considering the fact that you were my guest I refrained but I haven’t forgotten and someday I may pay you in return,  Catherine discovered your trick before she got in bed  She has a habit of throwing the covers far back before she gets into bed.

 

3/23/30

 

Apparently we are not lacking for opportunities to work.  What do you think of the offer from Philadelphia?  I have not been able to think of anything else since I read the letter that came Friday.  I’d give a good deal to be able to talk to you about this matter.  I will be so anxious to get your letter telling me what you think about it.

As I think if it I come to think more and more that it would be quite the work for us.  I don’t know just what the work would be but it might be interesting for a year anyway.

You would have the opportunity to go to school a part of the time if you wanted to.  To me it seems to be a great advantage all around.  Perhaps it wouldn’t be preferable to work at Monroe if we can both work there but is that going to be possible?  Naturally we must think of financial gains in view of the future  I thought perhaps you would be particularly interested in this wok because of school advantages.  The final decision is for you to make.  I am sure you will think it over carefully and make the wisest choice.  You may guess from what I have written that I will be willing and satisfied if it seems best to you that we should go to Philadelphia.

Questions come to me of course concerning the work.  Would we begin at once or in the fall?  If at once would we go to the conference as pre-arranged and then go to Philadelphia at once?  If not until fall, what would we do during the summer – be east or in Nebraska?  You see I hadn’t planned to be so far away from home so suddenly  That is the only objection I have to it at a  Mother said right away “Oh, that’s so far away”.  However it isn’t as if we’d never come back for years.  We would surely come back in the summer for our vacation.  Mother thinks it is a splendid opening for us and advised us to go and for you to go to school there.  I’m glad she talked that way or I should have felt dreadful about it and might not have formed my opinion as I did.  You know I would rather be nearer home than that but since we would be going east sometime anyway it might as well be now.  We will be prepared to come back that much sooner, for we are coming back to live in Nebraska are we not?  I would so much rather live here permanently if your work will permit.

Last week Dad painted the interior of our house.  Mother says that much is done toward the wedding.  The house is all topsy-turvy now.  It wouldn’t be so bad I this would be the last of it but it will probably be done over again before June.

The missionary society is going to piece a quilt this month for me.  That will be fine.  Mother is making me one too.  In time I may have a few things.

Chester and Dale went into the city Saturday and got themselves new suits.  They were all decked out today in great style.  Very neat looking.

You will think me very foolish when I tell you what I have just about decided to do.  It is something I have always admired and wanted but is not necessary at all.  I want a fur neck piece.  I can’t decide whether or not to put the money into it for all the real value it would be to me.  If I don’t get it now I know I never will because there will always be too many other things.  Things for the house, you know.  Everything in my wedding outfit must be of the most exquisite and most beautiful things.

 

3/25/30

Your letter just about wrecked the day for me so far as concentration on school work was concerned.  I wouldn’t have you write any other way of course.  You always seem so generous in your attitude toward everything especially anything I ask you about. Sometimes I wonder if you will actually be like that after we are married.  I am a fortunate girl.

 

3/27/30

My dear,  you are no good at all in helping me to decide by questions.  I might just as well not have you for all the good you do me – to tell the truth, you are too generous in your opinions.  It may bring you to grief someday.  I suppose you are well aware of the fact that in a little matter like that I would suit myself anyway unless you gave some drastic reason for me not to.

The suspense is rather hard on the nerves.  This week has been one of real struggles for me.  I’ll be glad when more information arrives and some decision is made.

You thought of the same thing I did in connection with schools and Prof.  It would be interesting to see him again but I think it would be better not to.  There again you are too liberal in your attitude.  I am sure of that one thing but we won’t discuss it.  It was “every man for himself” then which caused chaotic conditions.  We will let the past rest in peace, shall we lover boy?

As you already know, I share your feeling that this offer is indeed an opportunity for us even though it does make me feel homesick to think of it even now.  I will be so anxious to hear from Bess again.  It is not necessary for me to write to Bess, is it?

Yesterday Virgil Berth brought up some quilts his other had made to see if any of the teachers would want to buy them.  There were made very nicely and were beautiful so I bought one  It was not quite finished but will be soon.  If we make plans to go to Philadelphia be sure to inquire if the cottage is furnished and with what things.  Perhaps we would rather have our own things anyway.

 

3/30/30

I have had a terrible cold since Friday.  It is a great time to b ill.  This is exam week for us again.  Another thing I must tell you but don’t worry about it – I have been directly exposed to scarlet fever.  Last Thursday afternoon one of my little boy was quite sick with sore throat and headache and his face was so flushed.  We had no way of getting him home so he had to wait until the wagon came in the evening.  The next morning the doctor quarantined the family for scarlet fever.  Now the whole room is exposed myself included because I took care of him.

I am anxious to read the letter I know is waiting at the post office.  I’m eager for more information.  You must relay it as soon as anything comes to you.  I talked to Mary Way today about this work.  She says she doesn’t recall this particular work or organization.  When she worked in Philadelphia she was not under the Friends supervision.  She reminded me that we mustn’t think we’ll get rich in the east.  Living expenses are much higher there than here.  She advised making very sure of where we were to live before going there.  Conditions are not always so favorable.

Mary told me something else that interested me greatly.  She has been offered work as assistant hostess at the new school being established in Philadelphia.  She has not decided what to do about it though she is considering it seriously.  As soon as she got my letter she wrote to Phil. asking for more information.  The possibility of our going there too made her more interested.  I would like it immensely if she would be there.

I have finally convinced Mrs. Heizer that I am going to leave her at the end of next month.  I shall regret it very much but it must be.  She thinks she is going to get me in with some music teachers she knows there.  She said she wished I could go to one in particular but she knew it would be too expensive.  Out of curiosity I asked her how much she charged.  Her reply – twenty dollars and hour.  Now if all teachers charge accordingly, I’ll not be studying piano next year.  Perhaps I won’t anyway.

I indulged in my proposed bit of foolishness last Saturday.  Hope you are not too disappointed in me.  Also got a link watch band.  Had it ordered special in yellow gold.  Very fond of it.

Only April and May left, dear.  You aren’t forgetting, are you?

4/1/30

There is so much I want to say to you I scarcely know where to begin.  My mind is so uh upset between happiness, regret, and the strangeness of everything that I am totally at sea.  I have been feeling quite cool toward our proposed work until I received your letter this morning and now I am fired with enthusiasm again.  To tell the truth, the situation is beginning to look too good to be real.  A disappointment of some sort is surely due.  I would like to know a bit more fully what will be expected of me but no doubt I’ll soon learn.  There is no question but what it will be interesting.  The only drawback I see is the great distance from Phila. home.  I have the  queerest feeling when I think of that.

That brings me to another thing which is very selfish of me to say but I might as well be frank about it.  I half way hope our work there will not begin until fall for this reason.  If we leave immediately after our wedding knowing that we will not be back for a year it is going to soil the wedding for me.  Not even my love for you and the happiness in being with you will be enough to take away that dreadful hurt.  If arrangements could be made whereby we could leave home the next day or two I would not mind so much.  Don’t you see – I want nothing to cloud our first happiness together.  If we could be gone a day or two and then come back home for our final leave-taking, I could bear it much more easily.  It is a strange request to make but you understand, don’t you?

Some of us are fairly holding our breath for fear school will be closed because of scarlet fever and measles.  So many students were absent today that all classes, both grades and high school, were much broken.  If it grows much worse the school must  closed although there are no serious cases  that we know about.  The board met today and are considering the matter but decided in the negative.  They don’t want school to be held any later in the spring.  Tomorrow will probably decide the matter.  I am still wondering about myself.  I know I won’t have the measles (can I ever forget?) but scarlet fever is another thing.  I’m trying to be as careful as possible.

I finally took the problem I’ve been having with the little boy to Mr. Kruse and he decided to talk to the boy’s father.  His parents have been aware of his problem because it began when he was very small.  They have had no luck trying to break him of it.  He thinks it is nothing much – more annoying to those who see him than to himself but we are all agreed it should be stopped.  I am to talk to him.  The boy has always lived on a farm and attended a country school.  Coming to this school and trying to play with this group of boys has been almost too much for him.  He is a rather innocent, timid type and doesn’t mix in well with this gang.  They treat him a bit roughly.  For instance the boys told him that he must smoke and drink before he could join their club.  He refused so they told him they were going to lock him up in an old shed for the night.  They keep him worried all the time about something because he believes the things they tell him.  Another time he came home so distressed his mother was worried.  He finally told them that one of the boys said not to be surprised any time to see his father’s head come rolling down the street because in this town they kill someone nearly every day.  Vernon cannot adjust himself to such a group.  Perhaps the gang needs a little more guidance than does this one boy.  And so my problems go.

 

4/3/30

This is the week for exams for us.  Does that explain anything?  There are many papers before me but I am so flighty I can do nothing with them.

We are still undecided about closing school but I don’t think it will be.  There are a great any students absent but we are carrying on as best we can.  I had another good exposure to scarlet fever this morning.  If I am going to take it, I surely will now.

Had a letter from Ralph this week saying that he is wearing glasses now.  Can you imagine how he must look?  Funny old kid.  He has finally broken with Marie definitely.  For one I’m glad that is over if he doesn’t get into something worse.

 

4/6/30

Back to work again but I’m wondering what the week will hold for us.  They tell me of several new cases of scarlet fever that have developed over the weekend.

Took my lesson on Saturday as usual and then saw Mary Way.  She hasn’t heard anything from Phila. but expects word any time.  I do so hope she gets her position there.  It would mean a great deal to me.  You understand it isn’t because I love you less, but it will just be hard to be so far away from family.  I’ll need all the loving you promised.  That is at the bottom of the whole thing.  I wouldn’t be going but for that promise.  It would lead me to the ends of the earth, I believe- just to be with you.

I received a copy of the last letter sent to you and it appears everything is set for us.  I foresee no reason for us not getting this appointment.  Now that I have thought of it so long, I would be very much disappointed if we don’t.  I’m glad you are making all arrangements and I can enjoy the benefits of it.  It is always so hard for me to make decisions on important things.  That is one reason I need you so much – to look after my affairs.  The cost isn’t much if loving is all you ask.  I have an abundance of that to give and there will always be more.

The county agent sent word that the state is offering a free trip to Lincoln the first week of June to someone who has a certificate of achievement and one of appreciation in 4H club work.  I have both so he thinks I may be chosen.  He wanted to know if I would go if I was chosen.  I didn’t tell him I planned to go to Lincoln anyway.  I expected to go sooner but perhaps I can work plans out this way.

I still think June 10 will be the date.  A week later would be an inconvenient time for me and you wouldn’t be so happy either.  If any change is made it should be changed to an earlier date.

Ralph intends to be home at Easter time too.  They will be having spring
vacation and, as usual, he doesn’t have any work in mind so Dad is having him come home to build fences.  What would the poor boy do without Dad to turn to?  I’ll be glad to see him anyway.

 

4/8/30

Now that report cards are out of the way I can rest in peace once more.  How glad I am that only one more time remains.  I hope I get into nothing worse.

I’m not so sure it would be so wise for you to be around our school at a time like this but I suppose it would be no more dangerous for you than for me.  It would be unfortunate for you to take our disease to your town but I hope you not afraid to risk it.  There are eight pupils out of my classroom and in most grades more than that.

It appears as though we are fairly set for next year.  I really am looking forward to it.  Of course, I’ve had to tell the gang about it and they are all excited too.  Most of them are making some change next year but not a one has as interesting a prospect before them as I.  If all plans work out, our happiness will be complete.

The music contest will be at Wayne this weekend and you might know I’m planning on being there.  I’m driving Dad’s car out and taking several others with me.  Then Ray and Catherine are going home with me Sunday for dinner.  Wish you could be there with me.

 

4/9/30

I shall be anxious for the mail in the morning and yet I am afraid.  I want us to go to Phila. and still I don’t.  To be honest I don’t dare think about it or I get the blues so badly.  I don’t care what happens to me.  I’ll be disappointed if we don’t get the place and I shall feel badly if we do.  It is just a fifty-fifty situation.  I feel like weeping every time I go home…..

The free trip to Lincoln is mine.  My expenses are paid – nothing to do but have a good time.  I wish that week would come a little sooner than first week in June but since it is so, I must make the best of it.   The county agent came up last night to tell me about this trip and come to find out he is an old friend of Miss Borneson’s.  He graduated from the university last year.  Very young, good looking, has a car and I judge is an ambitious fellow.  Elly persuaded him to stay for supper and we invited Ray down and had a big time.  He took us all for a ride then we bought ice cream and had a feed at Mitchell’s Mr. Spence wants me to organize a club again and appoint another leader if I can find someone to take it.  I’m sure the girls are interested enough to in one.  Would like to take the on another year myself.

More sickness – I am quite disgusted.  How can we do anything in class work with so many of the pupils absent and then to have them come straggling back to school.  The people around this town do the most outlandish things.  They act as though it is a disgrace to have scarlet fever.  A pupil of mine came back today and her hands were peeling off.  I was furious.  Her mother says the girl didn’t have scarlet fever but she was sick long enough.  I have been directly exposed so many times this week that now I don’t care.  Everyone else is so careless, I don’t give a darn whether I get it or not.  They can get anyone they want to take care of this mess.  If you run the risk by coming up, I think I shall send you out home to stay Friday.  It will be too much of a gamble for you to stay about school.  I feel most sure Nurmie is having it right now – although h says not.  He has been missing several days of school this week.  Manages to be around about half a day and then he is in bed again.

Merl has accepted the position of superintendent at Dannbrog, Nebraska.  Good for him, yet I hate to think of him as superintendent.  Too much of a dog’s life.  Perhaps he can make people feel differently toward him but I wouldn’t be superintendent for a good deal more than he is getting.  Mother is all thrilled about it.  She has wanted him to try for it for some time.  I surely hope he makes good.

Learned that the piano part of the contest comes tomorrow evening so I’m going over to Wayne tomorrow for that then again on Saturday.  I’m looking forward to it with a great deal of anticipation.  I hope it will afford some relief.  If it doesn’t I shall soon be ready for those institutions that care for people with affected minds.

Our “happy home” has been broken up at Mitchells.  Three of the bunch left and are eating at the restaurant.  Three of the girls couldn’t get along so they left.  Never see anything of them anymore.  Just four of us left.

 

4/13/30

After so much foolishness and laughter I doubt if I can get serious enough to write a decent letter.  At any rate it will be of a different type than the last.  I should never have sent that letter but it was all I could write – feeling that way all week.  You will be grateful to know that I feel right with the world once more and can feel optimistic even though I have only 24 pupils left.  I don’t know how to teach with so few children before me.  Lord only knows how they will ever get their work made up before school closes.

The music I absorbed this week end has set me right again..  Went over Friday evening and heard the piano section of the contest.  It was delightful  Our boy from Allen won first.  We were at Wayne all day Saturday and heard all kinds of things.  I can think of nothing in the way of work that gives me quite as much enjoyment as a music contest.

Catherine and Ray were out home today with me.  We had more fun just fooling around.  Ray is the funniest thing when he wants to be.  The boys are quite fond of him because he is a farmer at heart and made himself right at home with them.  They like to hear him play the piano.

The only flaw during the weekend was the fact that Catherine got a little mean to Ray.  When she gets peeved she can act terrible.  She isn’t the right type of girl for him.  They are too absolutely different. She is always letting her temper fly over some little thing which makes it unpleasant for him. Sounds like I am falling for him myself, but I never think of him that way. He is like a brother to me.  If it was last year I probably would have gotten in difficulties, but I never felt that way this year.  You take up too much of my attention and thought.  There isn’t room for anyone else.

My hope is that you have not grown discouraged with me again after my last letter.  My thoughts were morbid an nothing seemed quite right.  Now that I have come out of it I am enthused again as you might know I would be.  What an ideal arrangement of work if there isn’t too much of it.  It doesn’t sound much like social service work to me.  It appears to be connected with school.  If we only knew definitely about it and just what was expected of us.  You know I have had no training in school music – singing nor very much in folk dancing or dramatics.  I might profitably spend my time in summer school if such could be arranged

Naturally I am glad our work doesn’t begin until September.  However, it doesn’t seem to me it would be profitable to go to Philadelphia for the summer.  It would cost us no more to make the extra trip than staying east, would it?  I don’t care what we do this summer.  You may decide.  Whatever suits you suits me.  I’m yours to do with as you choose so long as you love me and give me first thought occasionally.

I’m a bit worried – although it is none of my business – about Josie  When I was home she brought a boyfriend hoe.  Rumor has it that she is becoming infatuated with him but I hope they are false.  He is barely 21 while she is closer to 30.  His in not good looking, hasn’t an attractive personality and acts embarrassed to tears.  Of course this is all first impression but I should be very much disappointed if she is choosing a fellow like he appeared to be for anything serious.  Tell you more when I can see you and really talk.

 

4/15/30

Did you know your girl is an artist along with her other accomplishments (yah)?  I have just completed a work of art upon the window of my school room.  You shall see it when you come this week.  It is wonderful.  Really, I did try my hand at a little work with a little degree of satisfaction.  An Easter decoration.

What shall we do while you are here?  Shall I go to the city for my lesson? If you would rather just spend the day together, we shall.  Perhaps we will need the time to do all our talking.

We are still having lots of scarlet fever.  I have so many pupils absent I scarcely know how to teach.  My scarlet fever must have settled in my tooth.  My wisdom tooth has bothered me again.  It has to have its spells at regular intervals.  I suppose in the end I will have to have the thing pulled.

I haven’t written to Miss Lang yet for the main and simple reason that I don’t know what to write.  I’m going to wait until I talk with you.  You must tell me what I am expected to write.  I don’t know very much about any of those subjects except music and not much about that.  If I must be your advisor, you must do as much for me.

Your mention of George and Zola has made me wonder too.  What will they do?  I certainly wouldn’t want to be in  Zola’s place.  Life is going to be a hard struggle for them, it appears.  I’m afraid I’m not as grateful a I should be for our opportunities.  So much has been offered to us.  I read a story last night that might well be concerning myself.  About a girl who refused to leave her parents and old friends and the near tragic consequences  It was like a warning to me.  However, I am glad for the summer in Nebraska.  Seems to me by Sept. I shall be perfectly ready to go after becoming accustomed to living with you.  I will just naturally expect to go with you without second thought.

 

4/21/30

There is plenty that has happened about our town today of which I will tell you presently, but first I want to tell you that I have just penned a letter to Miss Lang.  You must commend me for obeying so promptly even though I neglected the duty so long.  Now I shall anxiously await a reply.

Now for the other  The school has been a bit upset today because Miss Borreson was taken home to Wahoo this morning ill with either scarlet fever or measles.  We do not know for such which.  She does not plan to be back this year.  I’m afraid it is going to be hard with her  And that isn’t all Helen Newlin has the measles too.  I am so sorry for her because she will miss so much that she had counted on at the closing of her senior year.  Very unfortunate and still I don’t suppose anything will be done about it .  We’ll all run the same chances of becoming ill.

Catherine has planned a linen shower for me Saturday evening at her home in the city.  She couldn’t have chosen a more inconvenient time for it as far as I am concerned but I don’t dare say anything because it will make her peevish to have to change her plans.  She made them all and then told me about it.  Of course it is darling of her to do it but I’m not especially crazy about the idea.  I want to be home Sunday because of my birthday.  I had already promised Mother.

I’ve been walking around in a dream today thinking of you and hoping you had a safe return home.

 

4/23/30

I am so tired this evening that I can scarcely move.  After school Catherine took her pupils out in the country for a picnic.  She asked Miss Cundy and me to go with her  We had more fun playing baseball, football and what not but now I am so very tired.  At any rate it is a healthy tiredness.  I have felt tired the last few day for no reason whatever.  No pep.  Mrs. Mitchell decided it was a bad case of spring fever.  It may be spring fever but my guess is there is a good deal of love sickness mixed with it.

Ralph came up and spent the evening with me last evening.  He sang and then we listened to the band play at the school.  I felt so badly when he left I had to cry a little.  I have decided to loan Ralph the money he wants and the rest you may use this summer as you see fit.  The other matter I think I shall drop.  You don’t approve under the circumstances so it will be dropped.

 

4/27/30 (includes clipping about the bridal shower)

What a weekend!  That’s all I have to say.  So much has happened that I am about wrecked.  I don’t know where to begin.   Perhaps I should begin back to Friday and tell you the pleasant things first.

I think I mentioned that my school children were planning a birthday party for me Friday afternoon.  They were so excited about it and had such a good time.  I let them plan it all just the way they wanted it.  One of the others made me a birthday cake an wrote my name on the top with dark icing.  It was all very lovely.  They called Mother and asked her to come to the party.  That pleased other so much that she baked a big angel food cake to bring up an then Dad was busy and wouldn’t bring her up.  Mother was so disappointed.

Saturday Dad went in to get his picture taken and I went in to take my last music lesson.  It was so rainy and gloomy that I felt like a gloomy cloud myself.  I hadn’t wanted to stay all night in the city but Mother thought I had better.  After dashing hither, thither and yon I finally went out to Meyers.  She met me at the door with the following story.  The first thing she said was, “it is all off”.  I just stood there while she rattled on.  Three of the girls had called and said they didn’t think they should stay because of the rainy weather.  Ray called from Allen saying he couldn’t come because he had planned to go with Kruse and Kruse was involved in so much that he couldn’t go.  Ray and Carol thought they could get a bus but learned it was too late.  Ray reported that Mrs. Ellis’ grandson had died with scarlet fever.  The school board and the health board met and decided to close school for the remainder of the year.  You can’t imagine how I feel.  I can’t make myself really realize that it is so.  It gives me such a strange, depressed feeling.  There is an actual gloom over the whole town mainly because of the death of this little boy.  He was in the first grade at school and was such a dear little fellow.  I can’t understand why it had to be so.  The family had been quarantined for several weeks except two girls who were in high school.  They stayed here with Mrs. Ellis.  One girl was a senior  Last Friday she took sick so they took her home.  She just thought she couldn’t bear it because the junior senior banquet was held Friday evening.  She had a lead in the senior play so they decided that day to drop the play.  It is too bad for the seniors; they will be denied everything that makes a senior year happy.  They will not even have commencement exercises.  The only thing left for us is to make out our grades, check in our books and we are free to do as we choose.  at first they thought the teachers would have to stay in town the remaining three weeks in order to draw their pay, but Mr. Kruse told me this afternoon that it wouldn’t be necessary.  This town will be a dead place for several weeks; the churches and theater are closed too.

By the time Kitty had told me all this I was completely flabbergasted.  Catherine was just sick.  She had everything planned perfectly lovely.  She was so disappointed she didn’t want to stay home so we went down town to a show.  I didn’t care to go but thought better not to say anything  We got home about eleven scared to death because we had seen such a scary show.  First thing we saw was a derby hat.  We thought Mrs. Meyers had Ray hide somewhere but it turned out to be Nurmie Vernal and Miss Hammond.  We felt plenty dumb but never dreamed that they would come through the mud.  We had a big laugh and decided to go on with the party.  We had our dinner at one o’clock this morning.  We were too silly for words.  The kids decided to stay all night but we didn’t get to bed until nearly three.  We all slept late this morning.  First thing I knew something hit me square in the face.  Nurmie had thrown a pillow at me but had disappeared by the time I came to..  Then the rumpus started.  Don’t see how Mrs. Meyers stood it but she said she liked it occasionally.  It made things a bit more cheerful for her.  Before things were over Nurmie pulled me over the foot of the bed and gave me a birthday paddling. I thought what a contrast to your birthday kisses.

Catherine and I decided to come back to town with Nurmie much as we hated to.  Mrs. Meyers packed up the remains of the party and we brought them out to Nurmie’s.  Vernal fixed it up and we had a late dinner.  You see our party lasted two days instead of one evening.

As far as the shower is concerned, it was a flop.  Ingram’s gave me a linen luncheon cloth, Ab gave me a linen hand towel and Meyers gave e six Madura napkins.  All lovely things.

 

4/29/30

You think of the dearest things  I thank you a hundred times for the little clock.  I simply love it and would kiss you more than twenty two times if you were here.  You are always getting m things I really want and have been wishing for.  Merl sent me a bottle of exquisite perfume.  Hope you will like it too.

It made me feel dreadful to think that you doubt me for a minute!  It isn’t as easy for me to express my thoughts as it is for you but that doesn’t mean that I don’t have them.  I never intend for my letters to sound cold.  They are not like yours but I never could write like you do. You know the song “You’re Part of My Heart”? It’s true.  Wherever you go, I’m following you.  That is I.

I feel so lost without school duties.  Yesterday I checked in books and all day my throat ached from near tears.  Many of the children I will not see before I leave and it hurts.  Those who have come in for their school things nearly break my heart with the things they say.  I have part of the grades made out but still have loads of work to do.  All the books are to be fumigated and then they must be put back in their places.  A tremendous task considering all the books in the school.  I wish Kruse would let us go this week but I guess we’ll have to put away books next week.

Mrs. Mitchell is having a birthday dinner for me tomorrow evening and has invited a few extras.  I hear rumors of an out of town show somewhere after dinner.  Wonder what we will do for my next birthday?  You must promise me right now twenty-three kisses the first thing in the morning.  My, I’ll be getting old!

 

5/2/30

I’m lonesome tonight.  Mother called this evening and said she didn’t think I had better go home this weekend.  Dad is afraid I might take a germ home.  I would go to you if I could get away from my work.  It would do me more good than going home but it appears I can do neither  We have worked like slaves all week on report cards and a hundred other reports that Kruse insists on and we are not through yet  I’ll venture it will take us most of next week also.  We can see no sense whatever in most of these reports.  We think he has just given it to us to keep us busy until time for our next pay check.  He keeps telling us he wants the books and building to be fumigated but we are told it would cost at least $200 to do it properly.  That will make the board think twice.  Many people are afraid to have us come ear but I don’t think we teachers are apt to carry it now.  It was much more dangerous I should think when we were with the children  Still, I would rather run no chances with Dad if he is afraid.  I could hang myself if I should take the disease home to him.  I did so want to see Dale’s class play tomorrow evening but Mother didn’t think I had better go down.

Last night we went to a show at Wakefield.  Perhaps we shouldn’t have but the town isn’t quarantined, why should we confine ourselves to its limits?  At dinner last night everyone gave me some foolish little do-dad for a birthday gift like a lollipop, little can of adhesive, a small folding drinking cup, a bar of soap, etc.  Had loads of fun.

Before we went to Wakefield I went to the post office for the mail.  No letter.  The evening was spoiled for me. Went back to Mitchell’s and there Frances had my letter.  Everything was rosy again. While our car load were waiting for the other car I had to read my letter.  What a sweetheart you are!  Never do I doubt but what you will do all in your power to make me happy when we are married.  I should indeed be an ungrateful creature I am not happy

Catherine has been out to dinner and I am glad.  I fear her statement is true concerning me.  She said I am a unsocial creature.   I almost believe I am.  I enjoy being alone – doing the things I want to do without having to talk.  I like your company because we can be together for long periods and I do to need to say anything at all.  I am not a good conversationalist I’ll admit, to my own detriment.  A good hostess must be able to talk when the occasion demands it  Usually when I am with people I can think of nothing to say and never anything clever.

I have not heard from Miss Lang since I wrote.  My picture must have been such a shock to her she hasn’t been able to recover enough to write to me.  Yes, I remembered to send the picture, although I was tempted not to.  After all, it is only you that really matters in this job so your picture was enough.

I cannot tell you anything about going to see you.  I can’t say when I will be through with this work.  Since the folks would rather not have me go home, I might spend the time with you if you are not afraid to have me come.

 

5/4/30

Your letter was certainly rich food for the heart.  What a joy it will be to live with you always and have you love me like that.  The idea of coming to see you keeps playing in my mind; I will come as soon as I can get away.  I want to be home for Mother’s Day, the last perhaps for some time.  Also I have been asked to play for baccalaureate next Sunday evening at Waterbury.

I would like to see your suit.  Won’t you show it to me if I come all the way to see you?  I know you will be perfectly handsome in it  When I think about it I have a panicky feeling.  I want us to be married at once before anything can happen to prevent it even though I know nothing could happen.  I’m impatient.

An answer has come from Miss Lang in reply to my letter.  She explains more in detail what is expected of me.  I will not have any regular classes to teach but will act as supervisor over a number of classes seeing that supplies are kept on hand and that attendance is kept up to capacity and, if not, discover the reason why.  I will have complete charge of the library.  What that means remains to be learned.  She said we would work from 3-5:00 in the afternoon and from 7-10:00 in the evening.  Sounds as though all the morning is free to use as we care to  After we arrive free evenings will be arranged for us which sounds fine to me.

She has suggested a change in my salary and wants an answer soon  I want you to tell me what you think best.  On most questions similar you will never say, but please tell me what you think best now.  You remember at first they offered me eighty dollars plus room.  Now they suggest sixty dollars plus room, board and laundry  Which do you think is the better offer?  It doesn’t seem as though there would be much difference but what do you think?

All the work we have to do about the house is keeping our own room in order and preparing our dinner on cook’s day out.  Not much, is it?  Then this is the way she described our room using her words: ” Your room is fairly large with a northwest exposure – four windows.  It has a built in utility closet, wardrobe, desk, chiffonier, three chairs and two cots.”  How do you like that?  Not so sure about that last statement.  What think you, lover?  She goes on to say “If you have some blankets I am sure you would be glad of the extra covering on some of our cold winter nights.”  I should say so if I must sleep alone (???)  Will bring the letter with me and let you read the whole of it  Sometimes I think this work is going to be a snap but again I think probably there is a great deal we shall discover that is not a snap at all.

I was hoe over the weekend after all.  Dad laughed at the idea of me carrying the germs home  Dale came up and took me to his class play Friday evening  It was quite good and I was so glad I could go.

As usual I see my arrangements are very indefinite so this is the way I’ll leave it.  If I decide to come Wednesday, I’ll wire you to have you meet me at Norfolk.  If I wait until Monday, I will go to Columbus and you can meet me there after school.  How does that suit your majesty?

 

5/6/30

A more disgusted faculty you never saw than the one you would find here if you came visiting  We are all most ready to pull up stakes and leave town and leave Kruse “in the soup”.  I never heard of such a superintendent in all my life.  I don’t think we are ever going to be through with this fool business.  We are having a grand time wasting time sitting around when we are not in mischief.  To tell you how much time I’ve put in, in the last few days:  Friday morning worked half hour and the remaining time a group of us played baseball.  I worked two hours after lunch and then played tennis in the gymnasium with Charlie, Carol and Ray.  Yesterday I finished reading a book in the morning and made one report which took about fifteen minutes’ times.  I don’t know what I did immediately after lunch (nothing I presume).  From three to six I played tennis again.  This morning I killed time down town shopping.  Bought the funniest dress.  Spent two or three hours on one report today and that’s all I’ve done.  Isn’t it a shame when I could be home helping Mother or spending my time with you?

I thought surely I could get away this evening ad I was going straight to you but no – Kruse has thought of something else he wants done.  I’ve given up now and think we’ll be here until the end of next week.  I have all my books ready to hand in so I just sit around doing nothing.  So much for that, and don’t set your heart on my getting to Monroe  I may not.

It is raining again tonight.  Lots of it.  This weather has turned my hair all on end  Ha some of it cut off this morning.

Your suggestion for witnesses is excellent with me.  Could never think of anyone I would want more.  I wrote to Esther about details last evening.  I shall be disappointed if they cannot be there but, of course, I understand how it is.

I was reading in the paper this evening about the uprisings in India due to the imprisonment of Gandhi.  I don’t understand it at all.  Why Ghandhi?

Perhaps during some quiet evening together you can tell me lots of things I should like so much to know.  Whether or not you answer my questions I should like to hear you talk.  When you are really in earnest about a subject you are so lovable.  It is so exciting to think that I can always be with you and share everything with you.

 

5/11/30  from Waterbury

In view of the fact that everything is so unsettled in my mind concerning what I shall do this week, I shall be on the safe side and write is case I should not find it possible to be with you.  It isn’t that I don’t want to come but I just wonder now if it is going to be possible.  First of all, I am financially embarrassed.  When I sent the check to Ralph, It sent it from my checking account at the bank.  Other things have come up unexpectedly making it necessary to check out practically all my account.  Last week I sent to Lincoln to draw out an amount from the loan but they haven’t sent it yet.  That is why I am out of funds and we don’t get our last paycheck until the end of this week.  Chance are the money will come in the morning.  If so, I will be there tomorrow evening – if not, I’ll not come at all this week but will wait to see you at commencement.  Mother hasn’t wanted me to go at all because she has a lot of work planned here for me to do.  Since I am leaving her this summer, I almost feel that I should do this for her.  Please do not mind too much, dear.

The roads are in terrible condition because of so much rain which is going to make it disagreeable for the baccalaureate services at Waterbury this evening.  I am going over with Dale but I don’t think all of the family will.  A Catholic priest will give the message this year.  The town agreed to alternate each year with a Catholic and a Protestant speaker each year.  Usually about half the class are Catholic students.

I have been having memories yesterday and today as I “cleaned house” in my room trying to discard everything I thought in wouldn’t want to take with me.  I have saved so many things during school days which make me recall lots of things.  Have decided it isn’t a wise thing to do reading over old letters and such things.  They should better be burned shortly after receiving the.  Today I have been putting pictures in my picture album.  Pictures are not so bad.  I dare say they will afford us hours of amusement when we are far from home and old friends..  I wouldn’t take a good deal for all the pictures I have collected of hoe, family, school and friends.  They are a source of great pleasure.

I must write to Josie and ask for her assistance with the wedding in the menial tasks bound to be connected with such an affair  I shall be of no account and Mother will not be able to do all of it.  I’ve thought of lots of details that I want to talk to you about.

I have had to make a slight change in the wedding due to Mother’s wishes and I must first ask your opinion  I told you there would be no wedding march.  Mother doesn’t like that but now there must be one.  I cannot think who to have to play but Helen Newlin.  What would you think of inviting Mrs. Newlin too?

5/15/30

It is well your letters came today and ended my desperation or my insanity.  I might have ended my life thinking “Now he will be sorry for the way he has treated me!”.  Well,   not quite as bad as that, but I would have called you to learn why you didn’t write.  Imagine going a whole week without a letter from you!  It proves even more truly how much everything depends on you.  My spirits were very low, then two letters came today expressing the same old love and everything seemed bright and happy again.  That love is absolutely essential to my welfare.  The promise of that love forever is the center of all my life now  Not even a month separates us now.  I want the time to fly quickly but this week has been long.

Did you talk to Dad about our plans and desires when you were here last?  You promised to but I forgot to ask you if you did.  I hope I get my pay check today and then can you guess what I would do?  I would go to Sioux City tomorrow and buy the dress.  Wouldn’t it be fun if you could help me choose??  I’m not setting my mind on any particular color or style until I see what I can get.  Oh, it will be fun.  Going to take Mother along to help decide this big question.

We went to the schoolhouse last night for supper and the tenth grade graduating exercises  There was lots of food and a good time was had by all.  I always feel slightly in the way at such a gathering  Either the women are older than I and have their babies to take care of or the girls are too young to talk with  Lawrence got his eighth grade diploma last night and is so proud of it as well he may be.  The speaker was a lawyer from Ponca.  Perhaps he was all right but he talked so  and on so many different subjects that I could scarcely sit still before he finished.  During the course of his speech he mentioned the financial situation, banking system, religion, character, home, occupations, conditions in the middle west, conditions in the east, and sights of Chicago, education, and means of travel, advancement since his day and on and on. Rambling.  Will go to Dale’s commencement tonight.

 

5/17/30

The folks went to Springbank this afternoon to attend Quarterly Meeting  The quarantine has been lifted from the churches but I imagine a good many people will hesitate about coming to the meeting  Several families have the fever yet but I haven’t heard of any recent new cases.

I have a duty to perform tomorrow which I always dread – singing for a funeral.  First I was asked to play but they needed another to sing and drafted e.  That is even worse than playing.  It will be the funeral of a man who used to be a barber in Waterbury and now has his home in Hartley, Iowa about a three hour drive from Sioux City.  The trip into that part of the country will be interesting for I have never been over in Iowa farther than Sioux City.

As you say, George and Zola are to be pitied knowing the circumstances.  I am very sorry for Zola.  Very unfortunate for George for I presume he is greatly in debt yet  Doctor bills are usually so large.  Our good luck for next year is not to be smiled at.  I wouldn’t trade places with anyone for worlds.  It will be perfect with you.  You don’t have to remind me of the nearness of the date.  I am fully aware of the fact.  I can imagine you being very calm and sure of yourself but me….  Sometimes I wish we hadn’t even planned a home wedding, then I wish it were over and we were living quietly together  Sometimes I feel actually panic stricken although I don’t know what about – not from fear but just everything in general.  If I only didn’t have to oversee everything and make the plans.  Mother will always say “how do you want this and how do you want that?”  until I don’t know what to do.  Why did anyone ever start this sentiment about home weddings?  Probably it is the proper place and deep in my heart I wouldn’t want it any other way but the planning and thinking about it is such a strain.  No dear heart, I’m not backing down on our plans; I’m just thinking out loud.  I want everything to be lovely for us to remember about our wedding.

In talking to Mother about our announcements she wondered if we would rather announce it ourselves because we have so many friends who the folks do not know at all.  That is true, but it wouldn’t make much difference, would it?  Tell me what you really prefer for I must order them soon  I told Mother I would have them ready before we left and she could send them out a little later.  Or would you rather wait until after we return from Canada?  Considering the number we want, it is going to be quite an item.

Dad has been teasing me about being hard up.  He said he was afraid I was going to have to call it off because I couldn’t afford to get ready.  I must confess I’ve been doing some “tall” thinking and figuring today.  To make it worse, notice came today of insurance soon due.  I wouldn’t tell Ralph of my troubles for anything  He would feel terrible.  I’m having to think twice about everything  Terrible state of affairs at such a tie but I shouldn’t have gotten myself so situated.  Plain dumbness on my part and now I’ll have to make the best of it.

Cathryn Chase wrote the other day asking for the dates we would be in Richmond so she could make plans for our visit.  They have moved into Richmond with his mother.  He is going to school during the summer and Cathryn will stay with his mother and maybe work in an office.  She hoped we would be there while Clarence was still home.  I would like so much to meet him.

Yes, we are scheduled to visit the Capitol building while in Lincoln.  I want to be in Central for the June festival and commencement too, if possible, but I must be in Lincoln by noon of Tuesday if I go with the group to the Capitol building.

 

5/21/30

You are a dreamer and what beautiful dreams.  Life will surely be wonderful with you as my companion  Just three weeks from today is the big day for us but I trust I shall feel better than I do now.

I have been so ill the last two days that I haven’t cared about anything.  I took cold last week.  Yesterday and today it has entirely gotten the best of me.  I have not felt so perfectly miserable since I had the measles.  I surely will feel better tomorrow.  We had planned to go to the city tomorrow but I am in no condition to go on such an errand now.

Do you really mean you are coming up this coming Friday?  Perfect! but couldn’t you fill your first mission by writing?  Only a week from this Friday I will go to Central City  After that the time will be as good as gone.

It is useless for me to try to write more tonight.  Don’t feel worried about me for I will surely be better tomorrow.  It was pure carelessness on my part that I have such a cold but it is a bit unusual that it should affect me so seriously at this time of year.

All my heart and soul is in your keeping, sweetheart.  Ruthie

 

 

 

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