Monday, July 02, 2007

Uncle Jim has been cleaning out G'ma Opal's barn to
ready it for pulling down as it is old and quite
rickety. Recently he found a suitcase in it with
old papers and pictures. What a treasure.

The following letter was in it. It is from my great-
grandfather to my great-grandmother. He wrote it
several months before they married. His first wife
had died in childbirth with siamese twins. He was
in Doniphan (aka Mayberry) and writing to Hattie in
Fern Nook which was 12 or so miles away. And yes,
Princess Hattie is named after her great-grandmother,
as well as G'ma Opal whose real given name is Hattie.
Great-grandfather John was born in 1854. He married
late in life and then had five children. G'ma Opal
was the youngest of the five. So, amazingly, I am only
three generations removed from the Civil War.

June the 16 1901
Doniphan Mo
Ripley Co

Miss Hattie Chappel
My own little darling Hattie
I would have writen before now but was expecting to come up
Though just when I was thinking of coming I took worse and
I could not come
Though the time seemed long and dreary yet my love for you
is the same
It looks rather dark for us now but after the darkest clouds
comes the britest day
I am geting better and think it will permnant this time
Hattie I hope you are injoying your self better than I am
Let me express my simpathy to you in behalf of your ma
I can't write if you see any thing in this worth answering dont
do like I have but write the first chance
Very respectfully
J.J. Simon


e-Mom said...

Laurie this letter is a treasure! Maybe you could frame it and hang it on your wall? How fantastic to find a suitcase full of family mementos. You've struck gold! :~)

LeftCoastOnlooker said...

How beautiful! I love it!
I was going to say. "you'll frame it, won't you?", but e-mom beat me to it.