Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 1 (1844 - 1868)




Lt 1, 1856

Howland, Brother and Sister

Battle Creek, Michigan

July 15, 1856

Portions of this letter are published in 1Bio 341-342. See also Annotations.

Dear Bro. and Sister Howland:

No doubt you are wondering why Sister White does not write you, but cares, sickness, and journeying has hindered me. We returned last week from a journey of two weeks. We had a weary journey, but the Lord strengthened us. We started for our journey intending to remain four days at Hastings and then return home, but Sunday as we were going to the Court House, my husband to preach Sister Hutchinson’s funeral sermon, two Brn. met us and said they had come for us 16 miles on foot to get us to go to Bowne, that some were anxious to be baptized, and as they had only heard one (Bro. Frisbie) they wanted a new gift. They went to the Court House and the Lord gave my husband strength and liberty to talk the truth. After [the] meeting closed these two brethren then walked home from that afternoon meeting 16 miles. All their errand was to get us to go to that people. We sent an appointment for that place, then went on our way to Grand Rapids, from Grand Rapids to Bowne. Our meeting on the Sabbath was well filled, although it was in the midst of the hay harvest. We both had liberty. 1LtMs, Lt 1, 1856, par. 1

Perhaps you will have an interest to hear about these Brn. more particularly. They are only a few months in the message, they numbered 17, two strong in the faith. A physician and wife, very smart people, moved away, but before we left there were two more embraced the truth, making their number good. These brethren never heard but one man talk the truth, and they had read our publications, been convinced, and within three months 17 Sabbath keepers were raised up. 1LtMs, Lt 1, 1856, par. 2

They are substantial souls; some of them, or all, used tobacco. One Bro. had just bought two pounds; he read the piece in the Review, he laid aside his tobacco, and has tasted none since. This ought to shame those who profess the third angel’s message, and have professed it for years, yet need to be often exhorted about their tobacco. A number of these Brn. have left off the use of tobacco, and another [also] that has just been converted out from the world from being a profane man to the third angel’s message. 1LtMs, Lt 1, 1856, par. 3

Sabbath noon four were led down into the water and baptized. One sister came to be baptized, a beautiful woman, intelligent, [who] had been a school teacher for years. But for three years [she] has been a cripple, has wheels to her chair and goes round the room on these wheels and does her work in this way. James and her husband carried her into the water and there she was baptized. Not one went in so calm, and was so sweetly blest as that sister. 1LtMs, Lt 1, 1856, par. 4

Sunday two decided for the truth, and three more are thoroughly convinced. Their heart is with us, and we think they will start from that meeting to take a stand for the whole truth, notwithstanding husbands and fathers [who] stand in the way. The two that decided while we were there slept not all night. They were counting the cost and decided, come life or death, to sell all to buy the field. They were hungry souls for the truth and it was good to try to encourage them. But I must write upon something else. 1LtMs, Lt 1, 1856, par. 5

When we returned home found my little Willie sick with sore mouth and canker; he is better now but the summer complaint troubles him some. Henry is quite a large boy, does a great many errands, is a smart boy. Edson is a smart boy making good progress in reading. Henry says he sent you a letter. I would like to have seen it and corrected it some. Poor Clara, yet not poor, sleeps in the cold grave; her loss we deeply feel; it can never be made up; it was so sudden, too. That tumor broke within and she mortified immediately. My children need her care. How can I go at all? It seems to me I must be confined at home constantly. O, do move out here and then I will leave my baby with you; the best little fellow you ever saw, and when I go [I] can feel easy about him. Why don’t you come? Can’t you come? There is work enough here and it is nearly one half higher than in Topsham. It does seem that I must have you here. My health is better than it has been. My husband enjoys better health. Do write me. Why keep silent so long? 1LtMs, Lt 1, 1856, par. 6

Love to all. 1LtMs, Lt 1, 1856, par. 7