Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Letters - Dear Cousin - Shall I send this or shall I burn it up? Alice E. Anderson

 Dear Reader,
      The next scores or so of posts will be not my own writings, but correspondences of my Great-Grandfather Leon Gould. This letter is to his cousin, Alice, whom he later married! Great-Grandpa Leon had a large family (of 11 children), and journeyed as secretary to Alexander Smith in the RLDS church before eventually joining the Church of Christ (TL) and becoming an Apostle. His descendants have been blessed with a rich spiritual heritage and many true family accounts of  what can only be called miracles. If you read these letters and are interested in reading more of the Gould family history, look for a book titled "Trek of Faith" by Peggy Tucker. These letters contain the original spelling mistakes and have not been corrected. Feel free to print and keep these letters in your own family history files if you so wish. In the future, a book of Leon's writings will be made available. Enjoy!

                                                                                                                           Moose Beltrami Co.
                                                                                                                           Minn. July 23, 99
Mr. L.A. Gould
Battle Lake, Minn.

Dear Cousin;-
“Now don’t”. “Its too rediculas. Not another person in the wide world would have said such a thing about me, and I am quite sure you wouldn’t if you had have been in your right mind. “The idea that I am the most beautiful”-------; dear me, where have you kept your eyes? What would some of the other girls you have seen say or think if you classed them below me in beauty?

     You are a queer boy, as I have told you before. I should think you would have been afraid to tell me how beautiful I am for fear of making me conscious of the fact, and then it would all be spoiled.
No you cannot make me believe that, for I know better. Well I believe I will drop the subject.

      I really wouldn’t have answered your letter until I had had more time to decide what kind of an answer to send, if it hadn’t have been that I do not know when again I can get off by myself to write and I never can write any thing of importance when anybody is around.

     Did I make you think that I have the blues only on Sunday? Well I did not intend to do that for I have the blues sometimes besides Sundays, but I confess Sunday is the worst day for such attack for then I do not have so much to do to keep my mind off from my perplexities, as I do other days; and Sunday you know is naturally a long lonesome day, if a person can not go to church.

     Any attempt of mine to have confidence in myself, when taking an examination, would turn out just like that affair of Dell’s when she got up enough confidence to make Arthur a coat. When it comes to taking an examination, my confidence fails me entirely, that’s the reason I nearly always have such luck, I guess.

     May has been staying up at Aldridges for over a week. She says Mr. Aldridge is very, very sorry that he kept his children away from the entertainment. They are going to have only five months of school next year in this district. Two and a half this fall and the same next spring. I suppose you knew the new school house at Moose was- is going up.

     You wanted to know why I had taken to having the “Blues”, also what it is that troubles me. I think I shall tell you some things that trouble me. One thing that troubles me is because I am of so much trouble to other people. As for having the blues; the mosquitoes, the wet road to school, the little school, being so far away from home and relatives, being among people who think of religion only when they can not think of any thing else to think of and other things combind are enough to make me have the blues, if they wouldn’t anybody else.

     I find it so much easier to do wrong than right; so much easier to let myself be led into foolishness than to keep out of it and so hard for me to decide how to do right when I do want to do right; that it is a very easy matter to have something to be “blue” over. Now another thing that troubles me a great deal is whether it is a good plan to allow this correspondence between us two, or not. I do not know how to find out what is best, so am going to tell you about it and see what you think ‘is best’. How to be plainer, I had just as live correspond with you as anybody I know of, but that is the way I felt last fall and of course I can not tell how long I will feel that way. But it seems that my corresponding; last fall led you to hope things of me that I could not fulfill and it also led other parties to believe that I encouraged you to believe things that I knew all the time there was no hope of, and if my corresponding with you now is going to make one of the bet girls and one of the best boys on earth think that I am hard hearted and a flirt, and that I take especial delight in trying to win somebodies heart just for the sake of casting it off afterward and a whole lot of other bad things about me, why I guess we had better not correspond, for I am guilty of enough wickedness anyway with people thinking that of me.

     I really do not know as I am to blame because I never set my heart on any particular person or because my fancy is always changing from one person to another. I suppose, unless I am to be numbered among the old maids, that when the right time comes I will know, who I really care for most. I should like to help you out of you trouble, someway but I tried that once and it seems I did not better affairs very much for you, so guess I better not try it again.
WELL I do not know what you will think of this letter, I’m sure but I had better quit befor I make it any worse.

                                                                         With best wishes for you I am your Friend
                                                                                           and “coz.”
                                                                                       Alice E. Anderson
                                                                                        (Bemidji Minn.)
                                                          Shall I send this or shall I burn it up is the question now?


  1. oh, my! The plot thickens. I am liking Alice Gould more and more, as well as Leon. They are such "real" people, with struggles and worries, just like the rest of us. One doesn't think of that when one just thinks of them as Grandpa and Grandma.
    Darleen Frishkorn

  2. Darlene. how funny for Ruth and I were just expressing that very thought:-) We just finished todays letter. Great Grandma Alice is so spunky. I would have loved to have met her.


I like you too ;)