April 25, 1897
My Dear Mamma,
O I had such a delightful time when I went to Somerville. Of course it rained Saturday so I had to hide my new finery under a mackintosh,* shelter my head with an umbrella and protect my feet with rubbers.* I rode in the barge to the depot so I didn’t get wet at this end. When I reached Boston I had to walk to the Hollis St. Theatre and this was rather awkward as I had to hold my umbrella, carry my bag and prevent my two new skirts from the damp. Each thing required a whole hand to see it and so I had a rather hard time. Continue reading
[Feb 20, 1899, postmark]
Many happy returns of the yesterday to you!! And now today I’m “of age”. I just do wish that time did not skim along so fast.
I celebrated my birthday and astonished the natives by getting down to breakfast on time this morning. Not that I’m going to turn over a new leaf and make it the rule of my life to always go down early. Oh, no. What’s the advantage? Continue reading
Feb. 22, 1899
I don’t see why you felt disappointed about the box. It was just grand and I was by no means the only one who thought so. The cake was particularly good both cake & filling being done just right. Elsie must have been dreaming when she spoke about a hard crust. And the candies the girls couldn’t believe that they were home made. Continue reading
Feb. 8 – 96
Dear Mama –
Midyears are such fun! I wish they came oftener (before and after taking). I passed in French, German, and Geometry and haven’t heard from English or Bible yet, but I know I passed in Bible, but am rather doubtful about the English. However, I shall know Monday. Continue reading
Jan. 15 – ‘99
How are all you getting along now that the person who made you so much trouble is out of the way? I hope Phoebe is all right and that no one has been taken sick, so you can put in some of the rest you need so much. Continue reading
Jan 16, ‘98
Yes, dear sister, you are a good girl to write to me but why didn’t you tell me some things I wanted to know? Your letter was extremely good as far as it went but that was the trouble, it didn’t go far enough. For instance, Mamma said in her Sunday letter “Elsie went sleigh riding with Louise (she will tell you the circumstances).” Naturally I was curious to know the circumstances but I am still painfully ignorant. Enlighten me at once. Then after asking many times if the cats had been killed yet, I finally got the answer. “The kittens have disappeared.” Which ones? Who disappeared them and how? You people say “Mamma has told it all so I will not today” when you might just as well elaborate upon her statements. For example, why didn’t you go into more detail concerning your visit to the Sem[inary] & Miss Learoyd. All you said was “Miss L. is same as ever.” Another thing you said “Debate last night.” Who debated, who got it & was it interesting? Not that I’m finding fault. Oh no. I am simply suggesting lines of improvement.
You will probably have great sport at the whist* party. How I should like to attend it. I miss whist. You will probably stay to some of the dances, don’t you suppose? The letters on my seal are Sigillum collegii Wellesleiani 1875 and in the corner circle, our motto “Non ministrari sed ministraire.” You know I have a white cord with which to finish the edge. I think it’s in the closet. I am glad Papa is of the right opinion concerning the beginning to the new century. Did he meet any opposition in the family? I saw the statement in a paper the other day and was at first rather astonished but was soon set aright by my common sense. I expect to find a goodly no. of stamps in my next letter for I am already four or five in debt. I am going to write lots of letters today as I owe twelve.
Have you had much skating lately? We had some pretty good Monday & Tuesday and we had a fine time. We have had our last recitation in Eng. III. Not that we have finished with English III (forensics*). By no means. Only that we have no more class appointments to be instructed in the art of writing forensics. We know all we can about writing them, the only thing left to do is to put our knowledge into practice by writing the four remaining briefs and forensics. The last one is due on May 11. Won’t the class have a jubilee!
I went to the board of Chemistry the other day & out of 32 formulas I put on the board only one was wrong. How’s that? Oh I do like Chemistry better than anything I ever took in college & what is better still, I do well in it.
I am intending to go to town tomorrow to read up a special topic “Spenser’s debt to Chaucer” in the Boston Library. Tomorrow night Wood Cottage is to present an opera the proceeds of which – 10 cents admission – will be used for keeping the ice clear for skating.
Now this is addressed to Mamma. I recently received an invitation to Grace Leonard’s wedding to be held in Omaha, Feb. 2. Do you remember her, she was the pretty quiet girl who roomed with Maud Burroughs & who sat next to you at the table. Now what shall I send the lady? Advise me & get it for me if you can – or else send me some money & tell me what to get. Remember wedding Feb. 2. I hope to begin “Quo Vadis” today if I ever get some of my letters written. 1st one is finished. Let the good work continue.
Please send Phil’s address before next Sunday. Don’t forget baby pictures. Send Anna’s letter back. Florence Converse, Wellesley ’92, is taking P.G. course here now. Anna met her on vacation. Should like to meet the author of “Diana Pistent.”
*forensics – the study or art of formal debate and/or argument.
*whist – a card game
Letters were made available courtesy of Wellesley College Archives.
Transcribed and footnotes added by Heddy Panik.
Were you disappointed not to get a letter from me yesterday? But I just didn’t have a minute’s time so I thought I would wait and write after seeing your letter tonight. You see I didn’t get up until almost dinner time as I was rather tired & thought I would get in a little rest when I could. Continue reading
Jan. 31,  ‘98
Before I got your letter I had thought of finishing the doily* and had begun to work on it. I am glad you’re of the same opinion. You poor Mamma! I hope you liked the present I gave you. Christmas – not counting this doily of course. I will try to make you another one but do not want to make rash promises. Continue reading
Dear Home people –
It is a lovely day, or so promises to be, for the events of the day seem to call for pleasant weather. Anna and Amy are coming out at noon. Yesterday we went to hear the Baccalaureate sermon by a Dr. Richards of New Jersey. The seniors all marched and dressed in white, a pretty sight. Continue reading
Mar. 12, 1899
Your last letter was a particularly nice one. It was quite a surprise to find that you had invited Ila. I wrote right off of course for her to come next Sunday, that seeming a particularly good time. I have not yet heard from her. Continue reading
March 7, 1897
I suppose you are thinking of me as in Lexington today, as there I am. It is such a pretty town and must be lovely in the summer. Grace has a fine new house – moved in since Christmas. We would consider the house large for a private family with library, sewing room, bathroom, five rooms on third floor, etc. but it is none too large for the family. Continue reading
May 10, 1897, [postmark]
Many thanks for the “pome.”* It is quite a piece of work. I hope your essay is in so near a state of completion. How is it getting along? And how is the valedictory: Let me offer my hearty congratulations to my smart sister. Continue reading