The clang of plates, knives, and forks have grated on my ear for the past two days till I feel tonight as if I'd never again enjoy the sight of dinner.
Our church dinners are over and I'm too tired for anything save a talk with my Sweetheart. It rained all day Tuesday so we did not do as well as we expected, however, we have realized $65 (sixty five dollars) most all of it come from our own church people.
Your letter gladdened my heart on yesterday and I find it my greatest pleasure to send you a speedy reply. Wonder what you are doing with your dear self as I sit here thinking of you. Bless your heart for the promise you gave me. I'll trust you in that as fully as in everything! I would not have you without fore thought lightly regarding what will redonned (?) to your comfort in afteryears, but things that are past and gone mistakes that have been made (when it utterly out of the question to mend it) just let it go and bear the burden learning the hard lesson to never suffer the like pain again. I do pray you will come out of this Utley matter safe, and if you do I beg you for my sake as well as your own to let other men's affairs alone and what you have let it be all your own, be it ever so little. I know all about this mixture in money matters and it don't pay both sides equal. I could tell you of numberless conflicts could I see your dear face tonight, but perhaps it was all for my good. I think we are only safe where we "trust no man farther than his own interest" of course I except you ha! ha! but I've proved it in giving you my heart for life. You can't imagine how I feel as the time draws near for my new life to begin. I don't doubt my love for you (knowing as I do that it's the very root of my life) but I fear you don't know half my faults and imperfections. I do want to be better and I pray God that you can be thankful for ever asking for my love.
No, no, don't neglect your business. Stick at that matter till you get if finished, and you come out of it. Don't leave it almost fixed. I've a perfect contempt for an indolent man, rich or poor. God put us here to work till the day was over and idleness is old Satan's workshop. I could but think last week (when I felt so heart-sick over your troubles) Ah! What became of all your fortitude you have dispersed so freely? I could only take the burden to "Our Father" and beg him to care for us and help us. How impudent in me to talk so to one who is so much more worthy to tender me advise, but I love you too tenderly to see you broken in body and mind by anxiety.
I've not yet told the little girls of the compliments I going to tender them. No don't bring anybody with you. I'm not going to have any attendants, or any wedding, just as quiet as I can manage it shall it pass off. Mother would have told me to go to the church (if she was here). I did not intend to send any cards or have any fuss made over me whatever. I love many persons here, but I'll see to that and tell you in time. I would not have a big fuss at my wedding if I was worth a mint. I'd just as soon laugh and dance over a grave. Mr. Anderson's address is or rather his name R.B. Anderson. He is a lovely man, and I'll miss his kind loving words more than I care to think of, but I know that a life with you will far more than compensate for all I'll give up. I trust you will receive this before you go off to court.
We are having real Spring weather now, the first trees are almost out. I do trust they wont be killed, yet most persons fear it.
I'd a long call from the "gentle Flo" this morning. She was quite pleasant. Cam and Clande think she is a wonderful woman. I hope it's all so and trust she may make my brother a loving faithful wife. Do you know I've never yet told Sis Clande of our love. I'll drop her a note before you come up for I cant find face enough to talk of it. What foolish things women are, myself among the number. I'm sorry Miss Maggie is so unwell, but glad your cold has gone.
I've made up my mind to love your sisters as my own and wont stop to doubt but that we will all live happy and as one family. I cant see why we should not and yet I would not trust myself with any other man alone, nor with Johnnie's wife Ah! Tis my love for you Capt. that is willing to trust anything or stand any test.
Clande would send love if she knew of my writing. I've not seen her bright face since your letter.
Tis now time for me to be asleep. I'm so stupid tonight that I fear my letter is a fraud.
Good night, may the angel of the covenant keep you from harm, care and anxiety.
March 14th, 1878
Go to LETTER 34
Back to MESSAGES FROM A HIDDEN PAST