Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 2 (1869 - 1875)


Lt 43, 1875

[White, W. C.?]

En route to California


Portions of this letter are published in HP 9.

[Probably fragment of family letter. First part is missing. En route to California, circa 1875.]

We asked a man living in one of the huts nearly buried beneath the drifts the depths of snow which had fallen. The answer was, “Eight feet.” 2LtMs, Lt 43, 1875, par. 1

As we neared Sacramento the scene suddenly changed. We viewed the greatest contrast possible—in flourishing flowers and in green shrubbery. Everything looked like spring. We were leaving all the snow behind us and the atmosphere was so mild we could have the car windows open without inconvenience. 2LtMs, Lt 43, 1875, par. 2

We love to contemplate the character and love of God in His created works. What evidences has He given the children of men of His power as well as of His parental love! He has garnished the heavens and made grand and beautiful the earth. 2LtMs, Lt 43, 1875, par. 3

“O Lord our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth. ... When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; what is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?” “All thy works praise thee, O Lord; and thy saints shall bless thee.” Psalm 8:1, 3, 4; 145:10. 2LtMs, Lt 43, 1875, par. 4

Had our world been formed with a perfectly level surface the monotony would have fatigued the eye and wearied the senses. God has adorned our world with grand mountains, hills, valleys, and ranges of mountains. 2LtMs, Lt 43, 1875, par. 5

The rugged granite, bare mountains, also the mountains decorated with evergreens and verdure, and the valleys with their softened beauty make the world a mirror of loveliness. The goodness, wisdom, and power of God is manifest everywhere. In mountains, rocks, hills, and valleys I see the works of divine power. I can never be lonely while viewing the grand scenery of nature. On the journey over the plains and mountains I have had feelings of the deepest reverence and awe while viewing the frowning precipice and snow-capped mountain heights. 2LtMs, Lt 43, 1875, par. 6

The mountains, hills, and valleys should be to us as schools in which to study the character of God in His created works. The works of God which we may view in the ever-varying scenes—in mountains, hills, and valleys—in trees, shrubs, and flowers—in every leaf, every spire of grass—should teach us lessons of the skill and love of God, and of His infinite power. 2LtMs, Lt 43, 1875, par. 7

Those who study nature cannot be lonesome. They love the quiet hours of meditation, for they feel that they are brought in close communion with God while tracing His power in His created works. We feel sad for those who complain of being lonesome amid the grand mountains and varied scenes of nature, those who would rather chat with votaries of fashion upon the subject of dress. They see nothing interesting in nature, nothing grand and soul-inspiring in viewing the works of infinite power in the lovely pictures of nature, but will go into ecstasies over the latest fashionable hat or dress. This class will talk of being lonesome. They are frequently tired of everybody, themselves not excepted, and do not know what is the matter with themselves. There is a great deficiency in themselves. They have dwarfed their minds. [Remainder missing.] 2LtMs, Lt 43, 1875, par. 8