Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 6 (1889-1890)


Lt 93, 1890

White, W. C.; [White, Mary]

Crystal Springs, St. Helena, California

May 20, 1890

Possibly addressed to May Walling, rather than Mary White. Previously unpublished.

Dear Children Willie and May:

My eyes are growing stronger and I am gaining some. My nights are the most difficult. I awake about twelve o’clock every night, so sore in bone and muscle I can scarcely move. This continues more or less until I get up in the morning. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 1

I have thought of taking May with me and she giving me treatment. I am somewhat perplexed to know just what I had best do. If I go back east, it ought to be next month before the hot weather comes on. I greatly desire to call at Colorado and see my children and my grandchildren. I do want to do just the right thing. I might perhaps have strength to attend the New England camp meetings if they did not expect too much of me and would make things convenient for me, that I shall not be exposed. If I knew the will of God, I am willing to do it at any expense to myself. But I have had, during these weeks of pain and helplessness, many serious thoughts. I am sure I shall never work as I have done and go at every one’s beck and call. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 2

You speak of my not going up to the Northern meetings. I think if you had any idea of my last sickness, you would not have any anxiety on this line, for I simply could not go. It would be impossible. I cannot walk but a few steps alone. I have not been able (to) sit up but a very short time, when compelled to lie down. My whole body suffers with rheumatism. Nights are long and tedious. Yet, I know I am improving. My diet is two or three rolls, a young onion and a little barley broth. I have not ventured on fruit of any kind, and shall not until I am thoroughly cleansed from the poison of malaria. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 3

Last Sabbath upon the hillside they were as sheep without a shepherd. I agreed to make the attempt to speak to them. The chapel was well-filled. Patients, both men and women, were present. Some are men of position and wealth. Brother Biter helped me on one side, Sister Lockwood on the other, and I moved slowly as a funeral to the chapel. I had perfect freedom in speaking, although I found I could not stand. I sat in a rocker on the platform and talked with them. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 4

As soon as meeting closed I was introduced to three women, none of our faith, who expressed their pleasure in hearing the words spoken. One lady said she should ever have these good words so full of light and comfort imprinted on her memory. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 5

Well, the institution has an excellent class of patients and they are paying patients, too, and I was glad a good impression was made. There is a man of wealth and influence from Pennsgrove whose judgment was convinced of the truth, but his worldly standing has hindered him from making a decided stand. His wife is convinced of the truth, but a worldly woman, and could not lift the cross to take her stand for the truth although her sympathies are with Seventh-day Adventists. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 6

After the meeting they came to Sister Ings and inquired when her husband would return. They felt after hearing Mrs. White speak, they must both take their stand decidedly. They wished Bro. Ings to baptize them and they unite with [the] Petaluma church. He has a milk-white horse and nice phaeton which they offer to me whenever I wish to ride. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 7

After Sabbath I have had several solicitations from the wealthy class for an interview. They want to talk with me, but I dared not tax my strength last night. I ventured, about five o’clock, to visit and converse and pray with one lady. She was very grateful. There is a banker and his wife here at present. She [came] for treatment from Oakland. There are others from Reno, Nevada; a member of legislature and also a judge. They seem to appreciate the simple truth spoken. I am so pleased, if in my feebleness, I can break the bread of life to some poor hungry souls. Never was I more fully satisfied that this is the place for an institution for health. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 8

Dr. Burke is fully in harmony with us to make, he says, this institution just what the Lord has signified it shall be. He looks forward to the time when he can close up the one in Napa and center his whole interest in the hillside. He knows not how to accommodate the patients. They have from eighty to ninety in Napa. Where will they be accommodated is the question. The institution is full and although Dr. Burke’s time is divided between the two, there is but little, if any, dissatisfaction. All have implicit confidence in his advice and counsel. He works constantly yet never seems to be agitated or in a hurry. He answers their questions with all deliberation and interest as if that one demanding his attention was the only person in the institution. If he is busy and sees one watching out for him, he accommodates himself to the situation and gives them an interview. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 9

He says if Sister White will stand by him he will not flinch, but he will work in harmony with this people for he believes the testimonies the Lord gives to Sister White. Up to the time of the dedication of the chapel, himself and wife would receive nothing for their services. He says he has injured the institution and he can only do his best in restoration and seeking to redeem the past. He has great anxiety for the spiritual interest of the institution. He is also watching every leak, keeping no more help than they actually need. He says every cent must be saved that can be, [to] work off the debt already on the institution. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 10

Well, I have just come back from my treatment. They have three girls to give treatments. Each have nine patients in the women’s department. I took my treatment at eight o’clock. One girl, German, from Switzerland treats me. She is very thorough and tries to do her best for me. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 11

Tenth of next month Brother Hutchings goes to Yosemite and has encouragement that I will go. Eld. St. John and his wife will go at the same time. I do not know as they will be in our party, for I think there is to be another party who goes at [the] same time. Sara came back last night, having attended to my business satisfactorily. Disposed of the fruit to the college. The house is occupied by one of the best families. I am offering it for sale, for forty-five hundred dollars. This is as low as I can afford. What price do you put on your house? Several have wanted to purchase it. I sold my old platform wagon for thirty dollars and Jim, I expect, is sold to the Health Retreat for two hundred dollars with the privilege of my buying him back if I come to live in California. Jim is observed by every one—so large, sleek and proud. They say I could get three hundred for him. He is a beauty, perfectly sound and gentle. Bill is for sale at one hundred twenty-five. I need money now more than horses. I have sold two cows, forty dollars each. Have not received the money yet for fruit or cows, but it is all safe. I want to clean up these things as fast as possible. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 12

Now Willie, had I better go to Battle Creek, if I continue to improve, the last of June? Go to Yosemite the tenth, be ten days or two weeks in making the trip and then go from Stockton to Battle Creek? Is this the best thing? Is it adviseable to remain where I am if I have strength [to] write what I can, and send back to Battle Creek, on the Life of Christ? My eyes are now so that I can use them without pain. Please answer these questions as soon as convenient. I am perplexed over this matter of Mrs. Scott. I fear the note has run too long and I shall lose it. As soon as the paper is found, send it to Lawyer Adams. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 13

I am trusting in the Lord. I believe He will restore me to my former strength if I have learned my lesson not to be presumptuous. I am tired and must rest. If it is not best for me to go to Battle Creek in June, I will return from the contemplated trip to Yosemite and find the best place I can to rest. It will be rather hot on the hillside, but this is really a missionary field. Several have embraced the truth. One old lady, Tracey, has taken up her abode in the institution as a boarder. Her children live in Oakland and try to persuade her to return home but she declines. She loves the society of these who love and serve God, and it is so very quiet here she cannot bring her mind to live the few remaining days with those who are full of the world. They consent she shall do as she pleases. How glad she was to hear me speak last Sabbath. Her heart overflowed in gladness. She could hear every word because, she said, “Sister White spoke so clear, slow and distinct.” I would try to help them here as God should give me strength if it is the “way of the Lord,” I have no will of my own. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 14

I have written Edwin Jones a long letter which I hope will help him. I think of my children and grandchildren. Would love to see them, but know not where I shall be. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 15

May the Lord bless you and me is the prayer of Mother. 6LtMs, Lt 93, 1890, par. 16