Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 4 (1883 - 1886)


Lt 39, 1885

White, W. C.

Basel, Switzerland

December 30, 1885

Previously unpublished.

Dear Son Willie:

We are having quite a snowstorm, not the first, however. There came about three inches of snow about one week ago, and it has not been warm enough to remove the first snow. Now we will have, I think, good sleighing for New Year’s. It has looked very nice to see the Common all covered with beautiful white snow. The trees surrounding the Common and the bridge were pure white as if crystallized. This beautiful sight remained all through the day. 4LtMs, Lt 39, 1885, par. 1

I have not been able to accomplish much for nearly two weeks. I was exhausted, but I am gathering up my forces again, feeling a little stronger. Mary has prepared two articles from a private letter written to Brother [Vocher] who was paying attention to Brother Vuilleumier’s daughter. He knew her parents were opposed to this match, but he continued his attentions just the same and was determined to drive the matter through at all hazards, but left it to be decided by Sister White. Well, this letter was written to him. Elder Bourdeau at Geneva is translating it. I think it excellent matter, and it should go into the Review. I have now an article on the observance of the Sabbath which I shall have put in the Review, for it is greatly needed. A portion of that given to Brother Hansen composes part of the article. I write some every day, but cannot write long at a time. 4LtMs, Lt 39, 1885, par. 2

I expect this letter will reach you before you start for Europe. I wish you to see just how my account stands at the office. I thought I would purchase me a horse, but I think not best to lay out money now for horse and carriage; if we go back in May, and I spend some time in England, it will not be best. 4LtMs, Lt 39, 1885, par. 3

Things seem to moving along here very smoothly. We are comfortably situated. I could not myself be more pleasantly and comfortably situated, but the coils do not keep more than warm on our side of the house. Were it not for this tile stove, which is a treasure, I should not be comfortable. 4LtMs, Lt 39, 1885, par. 4

Edith is not. She was buried last Sabbath. 4LtMs, Lt 39, 1885, par. 5

I have no particular news to write to you. I fear we shall not have your company here before the first of February. I wish you to bring on, if you can, a bottle of bay rum. I cannot get it here. Dr. Kellogg gave me a small bottle of something called Menther, I think it was, to rub on the head to relieve the headache. If you ask him, he will tell you what it is. It is quite fiery, causes a burning sensation on the skin. I feel anxious to do all I can, but dare not go into meetings at present. I keep away from everything that will call me out to labor, for I have overdone. I am nervous. I do not believe that there is any place where I can find rest. But I am gathering up my vital forces again and will be able, I hope, to do considerable writing yet. I have written several pages today, about ten, and am some tired. 4LtMs, Lt 39, 1885, par. 6

January 1, 1886

Since writing this I have written about thirty pages and corrected two discourses. I was real sick yesterday, but am much better today. Had a dream of real interest to me last night. I want it a little more distinct before I write it. It was for myself, for my encouragement. 4LtMs, Lt 39, 1885, par. 7

January 1, 1886

Dear Willie: I did mean to get this off last Wednesday, but did not succeed. We are doing all we can to get something before the people to act upon. I have not dared to go into any of their meetings, for I am afraid to be aroused to expend my strength. I need all the vital force I can get now. 4LtMs, Lt 39, 1885, par. 8

It is a beautiful morning, snowed some yesterday. The weather has been quite cold here, and bracing. Elder Whitney said he was going to write to you. I suppose he has done so. He received a letter from two who have embraced the truth in France. This has encouraged Brother Whitney. Elder D. T. Bourdeau has been much encouraged by two, worth some property, embracing the truth in Geneva. Brother Ertzenberger is doing a good work. He attended Sister Kelly’s funeral. I wanted to see him, but dared not tax myself with an interview. I am better now, though I have to hold myself in with bit and with bridle, for my soul is full of the truth. It is like fire shut up in my bones. I know we must reach a higher standard than we have yet attained, and how I long to have greater power to reach the people. 4LtMs, Lt 39, 1885, par. 9

God is our strength. I know many of our workers have tried to labor in their own strength. I know that the converting power of God must be felt in their hearts, or they will utterly fail of the grace of God. Truth will triumph, but who of us will triumph with the truth? 4LtMs, Lt 39, 1885, par. 10

Will you tell Emma to inquire if she can get me clover, that I may have it here? 4LtMs, Lt 39, 1885, par. 11