Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 3 (1876 - 1882)


Lt 34, 1876

White, W. C.; White, Mary

Battle Creek, Michigan

Tuesday July 11, 1876

Portions of this letter are published in 3Bio 41-42; 7MR 287.

Dear Children, Willie and Mary:

We are now in our own house in the field opposite Judge Graves. Brother Thayer has made many additions and rearranged the house to suit his ideas but this is a very nice location. We tarried here last night and rise this morning to write you a few lines. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 1

Last Friday we visited your home, Mary. Spent the Sabbath with your family. We were so worn out we ran away from meeting. We took buffalo [robes] and laid them under a tree and I lay down on them the most of the day. We enjoyed the rest much. In the afternoon Oliver and his family came up to your mother’s and we had a sing. Oliver has a very fine family. Mary [Clough] was pleased with George and his wife, and especially with Oliver’s family, but she thought most of your mother. She thought her a woman of solid worth, as she truly is. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 2

We came back home after sundown. It had been an excessively hot day and we drove very slowly. Some time after dark, about nine o’clock, as we rode, it appeared as if the heavens were illuminated. We turned to see the reason of the brightness and saw a large meteor slowly pass across the heavens and break in pieces, leaving a long trail of brightness burnt into the heavens which did not disappear for hours. This was a remarkable sight. Many have remarked in reference to it. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 3

But in reference to your home, Mary; your mother is well and good as ever, but disappointed in not receiving letters from you. She says she has heard nothing from you for four weeks. This is too bad. Never leave your mother in anxiety. Write, if only on a postal card. Be prompt to do this duty. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 4

We fear we shall not meet Sister Rice unless she comes in a day or two. We leave here Thursday for New York. Then on to the Centennial. Shall visit Lucinda at her home, spend one Sabbath; then on to Philadelphia. We found work here to do. Sister Sprague, the teacher in our school, has caused us much labor. She has taken advantage of her position as teacher to encourage the love of young men, and she has nearly ruined the usefulness of two or three. All day Sunday and Monday we were laboring in reference to this matter. Oh, when will young women professing godliness, learn to follow Christ? We have talked very plainly. She, Miss Sprague, will be dismissed. Why, if these things should exist, the school would soon be demoralized. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 5

Have you yet sent the testimony, all published, which has reference to Battle Creek? If not, send it at once. They need all that there is for them. The devil is not dead yet and his special power seems to be exercised in Battle Creek. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 6

We will try to do something in reference to my life in the course of a week. But there are so many things to do and to think of, you need not be surprised if we do not furnish matter for [the] paper. Father at one time was fearfully worn. I took the principal burden at our last camp meeting and have felt such a letting down [I] could not trust myself to write even the simplest letter. Yesterday I felt some stronger and I hope to fully recover my worn energies. Be patient with us and we will try to meet your mind soon if we can. Be of good courage, dear children. The Lord will give you strength as your day. Hold fast to God, cling to Him with unwavering trust. I would say your father is real well and strong now. He seems to be in a healthy condition. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 7

In regard to California, he talks about coming, [but] has a perfect dread of stepping on California soil. What can be done to relieve this matter I know not. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 8

What about your camp meetings? No appointment appears for California. Are Californians going to give up the idea of camp meeting this season? Unless you have more help than there is now prospect of, I fear camp meeting would not amount to much. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 9

We never have attended a round of camp meetings with such satisfaction as these last, thus far. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 10

I must close. Much love to the children. Will write them soon. We think of you all often and want to see you so much. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 11

We suffer, Mary [Clough] and myself, especially with heat very much. Tuesday: it is cool today; threatens to rain. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 12

Love to all the members of the family, Frank, George, and yourselves. 3LtMs, Lt 34, 1876, par. 13