Morganton, N.C.  
March 18th, 1878

Safely did your pleasant message of the 13th reach me on Saturday evening. Johnnie is out at "Creekside" (happy with his " Flo" of course) Willie is at the lodge, and I'm going to have the best pleasure of all, a quiet talk with my Capt.

I've enjoyed the day at Col. Tate's. They are all weak and would have some kind message for you if they had known my intention tonight. I'm glad your country friend dident inch me out of my letter. But don't write me two letters a week if it clouds your mind. I want you to keep your mind. That's why I pray you not to worry.

Don't you think I should come before a circus? I can't but recall a genuine compliment Mrs. Avery told me an old country man paid me on his return from the Centennial. (I'd never thought of it since and don't think me vain now) Oh! she is a fine girl, a great girl, why she is better than a circus and knows all that Centennial ha! ha! Poor dear Cora is in a nervous swing tonight on account of that husband of hers. The R.R. meeting is held tonight at Henry's and some fear that Capt. E[rwin] may not retain his position. I'm glad you are a free man. Tis all very well to have an office while you have it, but tis fearful (to my mind) to be so in the power of any set of men, to work hard and yet be under obligations for your bread and butter. Still some men can't make any other way.

As to the gloves, I'll not inflict the penalty of white ones. Get brown and a black "cravat" (as Clande would say)for I'm going to keep on my mourning and the brown would look better. In fact are truly admissible for a morning marriage. Do as you please about the ring, have it or not just as you think best. I never saw Mr. A[nderson] marry anyone but Cora. She had a ring, yet it can be without if I remember our code. Who will see us married I can't say. I thought at one time I'd send for cards and then concluded it would give offense if I dident ask every body, and if I did that, what was the use of invitations. Don't bring any company with you or have any to meet me. I'm not going to have any wedding but a Presbyterian minister must hear me give my vows or I'd never feel it was lawful. So after all you won't know my dear good pastor. He is just my idea of a perfect man.

I know as long as we are in the world we imbibe it's sin, but Mr. A. inhales as little as it's possible. Minnie won't compare notes with me. I could not but feel amused (and disgusted too) at the way she allows persons to talk to her of the man she loves. It's fun talk and no one seems to mind it in the least.

When my mind is too full of thoughts I waft you the rest. I fully admit this the only subject I never found words for. I'll try and tone down enough for you when I go to you and yours.

Now that the time is drawing near I have that sickening feeling of fear that I ever felt about marriage. I know it will be a new life, and one of joy or woe to both of us. I know that I love you and that I trust you. God must direct and lead me on to fulfill the whole duty I owe you. I've thought so constantly of my mother for the past few weeks, and have been longing long like some homesick child for her loving council before I enter this new path. I only realize more and more that she is gone and you are now my other self.

I'd a long pleasant letter from Dr. Bessent a few days ago. He is a singular man in some things.

Last Saturday I'd a letter from the Yankee Major (who I told you of last Summer). I'll tell you all about it when I see you. Don't like to have it rehearsed in my love letter. Col. Tate got it from the office (and man like wanted to know about it). I handed it over to him and was highly amused at the earnest manner he told me he intended to tell Kay about that, but he can tell you if he wishes. I told it first.

Tis growing late and I must bid you a reluctant good night. Don't you have some miles in a stage when you go by Charlotte? How are you going back to Fayetteville? I only ask for information. Hope Miss Maggie has recovered from her cold. Be at rest about the gloves and get brown.

I hope I'll be "laid out" long, long before you, but I beg you to excuse me. Tis not right to jest about it. God bless you. L.P.

Go to LETTER 35