Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 3 (1876 - 1882)

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Lt 42, 1876

White, J. E.; White, Emma

Gorham, Maine

August 30, 1876

Portions of this letter are published in 3Bio 46.

Dear Children, Edson and Emma:

We are visiting your Aunt Lizzie’s. Mary and I came here yesterday. We found our friends not in the best health but able to be about. Lizzie has had [a] cold but is improving. Eda has had serious difficulty with a diseased tooth, which resulted in affecting the jaw. Her face is still swollen but does not pain her. Large pieces of bone work out from the jaw, otherwise they are in good health. 3LtMs, Lt 42, 1876, par. 1

It is as dry here, I think, as in California. Feed has been cut short for cattle so that they have to be taken up and fed. Not a drop of rain for five or six weeks. 3LtMs, Lt 42, 1876, par. 2

We were to remain here until Friday morning, but last night a telegram was brought to me from father (who passed on with Brother Smith to Richmond to prepare for us when we should come), that we must take the twelve o’clock train today, as important reporting was to be done at Richmond by Mary L. Clough. So our visit is cut short. Our friends feel badly to have us go, but the call is imperative. 3LtMs, Lt 42, 1876, par. 3

Our last meeting was a very victorious one. We had freedom in meeting, in speaking, to the people. Sunday it was estimated that from fifteen to twenty thousand were on the ground. A committee waited on me, after I had spoken Sunday, to go to Haverhill and speak in the City Hall, which rents for fifty dollars an evening. The Temperance Club is favored by having it Monday evening for ten dollars a night. I consented to go. They had a hack in waiting for me at the depot. Your father and I were conducted upon a large, broad platform raised fifteen or twenty feet above the people. They were the first men of Haverhill. We were introduced to ministers, six of them lawyers, doctors, by the president of the Temperance Club. The Queen of England could not have been more honored. I had for several days been afflicted with severe headache and I was nervous, but the Lord helped me to speak. I was never more clear. One thousand people were before me of the finest and most select of the city. 3LtMs, Lt 42, 1876, par. 4

I was stopped several times with clapping of hands and stomping of feet, I never had a more signal victory. Many of the First-Day Adventists were present. One of their ministers was present. They raised a contribution but we refused to accept it. We donated it to their club. 3LtMs, Lt 42, 1876, par. 5

The way is opening before us everywhere in the east. And I am beginning to think it must be our duty to bear our testimony and do our work where our efforts will be appreciated. 3LtMs, Lt 42, 1876, par. 6

Never did I witness such enthusiasm as these noble men leading out in temperance reform manifested over my talk upon temperance. It was new to them. I spoke of Christ’s fast in the wilderness and its object. I spoke against tobacco. I was besieged after the meeting and commended, and I was urged if I came to Haverhill to speak to them again. Here is where Grant has figured largely in his slander of Mrs. White, but the tide is turning in our favor. We know not how to lay out our labors; we see so much to do. I am invited to speak in Boston to the Temperance Club. Shall do so if I am not too much worn. 3LtMs, Lt 42, 1876, par. 7

Children, come near to God. Connect yourself with heaven that you may be channels of light. Let not precious moments be passing and you make no advance in the Christian experience and warfare. Satan will be busy with his temptations. Be sure to resist him. I want you children to encourage Willie and Mary all you can. Be in harmony with them. Not one word have they written us to your detriment, but I feel on this point particularly that you two brothers must cultivate the tenderest feelings and the closest union for each other. May God bless you children is the prayer of your mother. 3LtMs, Lt 42, 1876, par. 8

P.S. I arose early to write this. 3LtMs, Lt 42, 1876, par. 9