Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 3

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Lt 45b, 1880

White, Willie; White, Mary

Battle Creek, Michigan

November 3, 1880

Portions of this letter are published in 3Bio 149, 154.

Dear children, Willie and Mary:

Your good and interesting letters were received this forenoon. I thank you for writing. Please write us [as] often as you can. My health is better but I sleep but little. I cannot sleep longer than [till] three in the morning and I seldom get to rest until past nine o’clock. I look rather older than usual. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 1

Tonight Father closes a trade with real estate agent Peavy for property on Goguac Road, that brick house sitting up so high, large, with cupola. We rode up there one day and we decided it was just the place for the old folks. It is on a prominence overlooking all Battle Creek. We purchased about thirty acres. There is a large, young, thrifty orchard containing the best of fruit, and about ten acres of oak grove. The house cost eight thousand. It was built ten years ago. It has all the advantages of a country residence and yet it is as near the city as from the office down. We think a road is on either side of us. The house is the most substantial, thoroughly built house I have ever seen. It is three stories. The partitions are of brick, but it is not built as we would build a house. It is cut up into many rooms. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 2

In the third story are four rooms, thoroughly finished, each opening into a large room—a store-away room. These rooms each have one good-sized window. The size of rooms is twelve by twelve by twelve. The second story has four rooms twelve by fifteen, with large clothes press off each room. Above the kitchen is a nice square room fifteen by fourteen, and a good-sized bedroom opens [?] from this large room. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 3

First floor has a parlor twelve by twenty-two, most thoroughly finished (was not finished till last winter); hall and front door, sitting room, twelve by seventeen; kitchen fifteen by fifteen; buttery twelve by twelve; bedroom twelve by twelve. There is a well on the doorsteps one hundred feet deep; a cellar stoned up and plastered rough all over—an excellent cellar, and an immense cistern. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 4

Now you have the large brick house described. We think much of the grove. There is a good barn, and plenty of land to cultivate, pasturage for cow and horses. A living stream runs through one corner of the field for pasture. Now you have our future home. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 5

We have to pay for this six thousand dollars. We wish Edson’s place to be sold as soon as possible for three thousand dollars. Make some effort to get Healdsburg place in market, for we shall want some [of the] means that are tied up in these places. Have you taken up that mortgage at fourteen per cent? Let us know how these things stand. We want all the interest stopped that can be. How much have I to my credit? Let me know. Every one who has visited this place says it is exactly the place for us. Henry Kellogg was entirely satisfied that Father ought to get the place for it was exactly what he wanted. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 6

Now I learn Mittie [?] will come but would rather remain here. Phoebe Lunt will also if you want her. Do you want Della Frisbie? These three will come if you want them. I have written to Lucinda [Hall] to know what she proposed to do, if she was going to California. As yet no word comes from her. Now write at once. What are your wishes? Dell wants her younger brother to come too, if she goes. If you want all of these to come before a letter can reach here, telegraph. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 7

Father is attending the wedding of Will Kellogg and Ella Davis. They sent for me but I did not feel very well so remained home to write. Tomorrow night Sister Mary Welch will be married to a brother from Kansas, a fine-looking man. Father officiates this also. Yesterday the funeral discourse was preached for Othe Taylor’s wife. She has been to Sanitarium as a patient. She died very suddenly at last. Marian [Davis] is at work for me; Eva Bell and a copyist. We shall not, of course, want the Cole property now. We have just what we want—a good, thoroughly made house, and everything we could desire. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 8

Mother.

Willie, please write to Father. Write freely. Show that you have some confidence in him. He is doing well. Is cheerful and kind. He feels that everything is kept from him by you and [S. N.] Haskell. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 9

He has some strong battles with himself, but now [that] we have this place, we shall move as soon as possible. We cannot get on the place before ten days, probably; families occupy the house. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 10

I am very busily at work; but Father keeps me riding considerably so I do not break down. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 11

Mother.

Edson is having heavy chills. Poor boy, he is almost discouraged over this setback. He has been healing his face and now the liver has that work to do. 3LtMs, Lt 45b, 1880, par. 12