Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 7

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Lt 18c, 1891

Miller, H. C.

Petoskey, Michigan

June 4, 1891

Previously unpublished.

Dear Brother Miller,

Have just received your last letter in which you complain of correspondence between you and me being made public. I have not written to a soul in Burrough Valley but yourself. Sara has addressed my letters, but she would not think of talking or writing about any of my letters. She never has done it and knows her duties too well to do it. Of course, some things have to be known. When persons were making propositions in regard to trading, offering thirty-five hundred for your place, it had to be told them after a time that it was not a settled matter in regard to our exchanging, because you were not fully satisfied with the property in Burrough Valley. When we first told them the property was ours, we supposed it was a trade in fact; but after hearing from you, we were not certain of anything. 7LtMs, Lt 18c, 1891, par. 1

I thought, when consenting to pay you one thousand dollars in exchange, it was rather hard for me; but when it comes to paying fifteen hundred dollars in exchange, I simply cannot do it. You said you would trade and consider the matter bona fide. I then said, No, on the testimony of those who have seen the property, and all bear the same testimony. After thinking over the matter carefully, I cannot consent to sell the Burrough Valley property for twenty-five hundred and take your property at four thousand. Whatever you may say, or whatever others may say in the matter of my property, it is the same they say of yours. Once I thought I could sell at once to the Review and Herald for the price you estimated property; but I learned I could not sell it to them, nor to any one who looked at the property, at that price. Now, if you wish to pay me twenty-seven hundred in money value and you keep your property in Battle Creek, you can have my place; but I do not feel that I can do justice in any way to myself to make any other offer than this. I am sorry that you are disappointed. I wish you were satisfied. 7LtMs, Lt 18c, 1891, par. 2

In regard to the rent of your house, it remained untenanted until I went to Greenville. I told Sara to rent it for twenty dollars and as there was no water on the place, I would pay the water tax, supposing then that the house was mine. She rented it for eighteen dollars and let the renter pay the water tax. Again, supposing that the place was mine, that the trade was final, I did some things I otherwise would not have done. Before I left Battle Creek, I rented the small house for one dollar per week. This brings four dollars per month. I rented it with special care to one woman. I had offers from others, but they had children, and I knew this would be an objection to renting the main building, so we let this one woman go into the house and rented the main building the best we could. In this way you see the place is bringing twenty-two dollars per month, and they pay the water tax. You might have done better, but we have had considerable anxiety and worriment over the matter. Now I leave this troublesome, perplexing matter, which has been a burden to me, in the hands of the Lord. 7LtMs, Lt 18c, 1891, par. 3

In a former letter I stated that if you wanted any or all the furniture that you sold me, at the same price I paid you, I release all claims to it and you can order anything sent to you that you desire. The things that Brother Durland sold at the same time that you sold out were offered me at a second hand store at a very low price. But I am entirely satisfied if you are, and if you are not, please let me know. The furniture can be sent to you for the same as you would have to pay had you taken it with you. 7LtMs, Lt 18c, 1891, par. 4

Willie does all my business; I should not make any trade without his advice or counsel, for he is my business agent. I am entirely pleased with the Burrough Valley property. I may make my home there. Have been glad to hear that the railroad is not to go through the valley, or very near it, for then I should not appreciate it as I do now. I should enjoy the valley if there were but few Sabbathkeepers in it, unless they were of the right kind. I should not expect to go to the valley to make money, but I should go there to secure a good climate, and this is the reason I thought you went to the village, to get occupation in outdoor exercise for yourself and for your boys, to gain for them pure air and plenty of exercise in the open air. 7LtMs, Lt 18c, 1891, par. 5

Now, my brother, I have no more to say in reference to this matter. Complete the exchange or give it up; but let it end soon, for this matter comes in to burden me greatly in my writing on the life of Christ. I would say, I cannot accept your proposition. I will exchange property, giving you one thousand dollars. I will accept twenty-seven hundred, money value, for I need it much just now to invest in my books. 7LtMs, Lt 18c, 1891, par. 6