Monday, December 3, 2012

Letters - Dear Cousin: I will endeavor to answer your letter, Your Cousin, Leon

 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!

                                                                                                                            Clitherall, Minn.
                                                                                                                            Aug. 11, 1899
Dear Cousin:-
With such materials as I have at hand I will endeavor to answer your letter.

     I met with a little accident so am off duty this afternoon. Was in attendance at the Silver Lake School last Sunday.

     Your letter is like you, Alice. It shows you Character which I admire and love. You must not worry over me. I will try to do the best I can but you must not be surprised if I fail altogether. I have been so near overcome lately that I dare not promise much for the future. I began to doubt the promise that our trials should not be greater than we can bear.

     Yes we can be cousins but, somehow that thought does not bring any great weight of happiness.

     Maud gets lots of letters from Missouri, lately. They have not sent out cards yet.

     You have lost more in weight since last winter than I have. When last weighed I was only fourteen pounds lighter than then.

    I have not seen Lester since I came home. It is of no use to go out there to see him for he is always away.

    I suppose you have your certificate by this time.

     You will have hard work to read this, but how can I spell correctly with such a poor pen?
Respects to Nona. I admire “smashers”.

                                                                                                                 Your Cousin
                                                                                                                  Leon Gould
                                                                                                              Battle Lake, Minn.


  1. Oh! How sad and resigned he sounds. Poor guy!

  2. charity,sorry but this is not the interesting blogs that fasinated me.Can't read them especially when all that energy could be put into your grandmother Josie.I just don't understand your religion,you say God guides but how does God pick who is important and who is forgotton about. I think not,the believers in Gods work would first put every ounce of compassion in one that needs it.I think you are brainwashed about Gods work.I am not a believer I feel from my heart and God is not a part of my life.Scriptures and whatever else you want to quote mean absolutely nothing-they are word easy to say the hard part is actually physically-mentally-emotionally using your own brain to do good.You might not like me for what I say but these letters are worthless,when you have a grandmother who you could put as much time into.My guess is you don't,won't and don't care.I am shocked at all of you.Is this what your father has taught you about compassion,that letters mean more than teaching his daughter what truly your God would expect from you.You believe so much in what God stands for it surely isn't what you and your mother and father do.Not one letter did I read,where are all the letters to a wonderful,caring,hard-working,giving,loving 83 yr.old grandmother.There has never been any and never will,scripture comes first.

  3. Nancy, once I believe you have read this comment I will delete this and the one above - you are simply not allowing my Grandma to have her own wishes met. When she feels ready to be in contact with more of her family she knows we'll be there for her. At this time she is not ready for this contact from most of her descendants. Allow her grieving process the time she desires for herself. Once she is ready to talk with the rest of us she'll choose to answer her phone or allow us her mailing address on the little things she sends. Grandma is a smart and strong woman, and should be allowed to have what she wants - we will not be forcing ourselves upon her before she wants to really be in contact. I don't appreciate your sharp words - we all strive to lovingly do the best we can in this life, and that is not the same thing for each person. Continue to do your best, and we will continue to do our best.

  4. Charity, Your love and compassion come through so strongly in your reply to your friend. Sorry she was so harsh toward you and your family. I do appreciate these letters, and am so thankful you are putting them in your blog. Each of us, in our human struggles, must find our way. God bless you, Darleen

  5. Charity,If you believe in your heart that this is what your grandma wants there is no compassion.Your grandmother has been treated terribly and it has been for years not just recently.You have your grandmothers po box and phone number.No one calls or writes.Maybe she wants peace and feels this is her only way of getting it.No one is making an effort.Has anyone given her unconditional love. Of course she is a strong woman but even strong woman want to be cared about.Over and over she was condemmed for making the choices she made-does she think do my children understand or do they still hate.Yes hate which is what it sounded like in all the posts.It is so hard that people who say they are christians can do as you all do. There is no excuse-you keep making excuses for the wrong you all do.I have never in my life seen anything like this.It't easier I guess.Reread my above post because it is the truth. Erase what you like.Life isn't shutting out things you don't want to deal with.Those letters had no interest to me I'm sure they mean a great deal to you.How do you all strive to lovingly do your best in life? From what i'm told no one calls or writes.It's hard for me to know my elderly aunt has to be the first to what make the first attempt.I'm sorry this is going no where.I have to say I will not try again.People who talk the Christian talk but don't have any idea what it means are sad human beings.

    1. Nancy, I understand your sadness and confusion at this case, as I also feel the same way, and also have never witnessed anything similar. No, we do not have Grandma's PO box and she has sent notes to her children, acknowledging missed phone calls, etc, but with no return address. Please do not be so quick to judge what is not clear to your eye. I am posting these letters as a favor to a cousin who is interested in preserving them for an enormous extended family. Both my parents come from families of 15 children, and I love and am interested in all of them.

  6. Charity not once in any of my posts have you took the time to understand someone else's view.Your story is set in your mind and I guess that's that.It's simple Grandma wants this.Well Grandma is 83.I know my 37yr.old and 23&19yr.old sons would never ignore their grandma no matter what is said.What has this beautiful person done that her children have no idea what she has been doing at least for tha last 5yrs.I'm sure she doesn't want to burden anyone.In the 60yrs of raising her children I'm sureshe gave so much of herself.As for your dad&mom coming from families with 15 kids-that is them-you only have 1 grandmother not 30 so being interested in all of them isn't your grandmother who should come first.You all know her PO box.And you know I think I would of felt the same way if my daughters husband swerved to avoid an accident knowing his entire family was behind him.Some day you all will look back on this and I hope your hearts break.Quick to judge-it's obvious no one cares.Your words are so caring,but thats all they are,words with no heart.I think of my aunt who should be treated like a queen daily.PO box 246 but you knew that.where is your mom in all this.Well I'm happy to send my aunt a christmas package,will she be getting anything from her children.Josie is a hero,none better.I won't waste my time on your blog.Your mothers cousin Nancy

  7. Nancy, please listen - No, we do not have her address but would be happy to - please post the rest of it. You have limited understanding and no compassion for the children in this case it seems - my poor mom is heartbroken - feeling that she has lost her mother, as Grandma hasn't accepted her phone calls. Mom has never lost touch with Grandma in the past 5 years until now, and has never been one to blame or accuse or speak ill of either of her parents. My mom is the most loving and kind person I have ever known, and loves her mother very much. I feel ashamed to see you so blatantly disregard and abuse the intentions of people you don't know. I understand your pain, truly. Please be more courteous.

  8. charity maybe Josie knows what will happen if she lets everyone know where she is.I am going by the terrible posts about Josie that her children posted all over many sites.It was all about how she "killed" her husband.You know very well what was said.She has to protect herself.I can't have compassion for anyone that has no compassion for their elderly mother.Why do you need compassion?From what I hear she recieves no calls or letters.I also feel ashamed that 13 of her children act like she doesn't exist.Where were they all during the long,hard 2yrs.your grandfather was ill.And yes I know my aunt and am heartbroken that she is so alone.Courteous is what you and others should of been to Josie-but no she has to repent!if your mother loves her mother as you say she would not stop until she made sure Josie is cared for. You all know how to contact her in soldiers grove.Tell me Charity if your children treated you how Josie was treated while Frank was in the nursing home how would you feel.You all don't deserve couteous,understanding or compassion.You are right I don't know the majority of my Sedlak cousins,what I do know is that Josie has done nothing and my thoughts of her over the many years was that she had so much family around her.I was shocked to find out so different.What are your intentions,I keep asking but get no answers,just the same old story.Go to her,she can't be hard to find.Today I shopped for her for christmas.You see Charity when I was young your grandma was the kindest of all,as I got older I would only see her occasionally but when someone finds a place in your heart you never forget them.My mother and Josie were sisters and all the years I heard from my mother about Josie.I hope you all find her with love again,she deserves this.

    1. Nancy, let's take this point by point.
      1) I am very pleased and proud to know you are contributing to Grandma's Christmas - that is wonderful
      2) If you really think 13 of her kids act like she doesn't exist, and that nobody calls, you must have been somehow misinformed
      3)Everyone knows where Grandma is, but we don't all have her address - please don't make ridiculous suppositions
      4) Let's see: Grandma while Grandpa was in the nursing home - I know my parents made the long trip to visit them, and so did my husband and I and our little ones. They were very happy to see us, and we were happy to see them. Others of their children and grandchildren visited and helped out much more frequently.
      5) People, including myself, call and leave messages to just say "hi, love you" to Grandma.
      6) You have not met the majority of these people you are talking about - maybe you ought to go spend some time connecting or reconnecting with them as well.

  9. Charity again you are flip flopping with what you say.First you all had no idea where Josie was or how to contact her-now you say you do.Look I care not about my cousins that don't seem able to show their mother love.I guess I must be misinformed,I doubt it.What ridiculous suppositions have I made that she isn't being treated how a 83yr.old mother in a wheel chair should be.Maybe your mother should make that long trip again,this time for her mother that she is heartbroken over.Like I said soldiers grove is tiny.The feeling I have for 13 of my cousins I would never want to reconnect with them,I see past their sweet,sympathy,talk.Why is it so hard to love Josie!You don't have to be pleased and proud that I contributed to Josie's christmas,until I was 10 my family spent 1-2wks almost every summer on the farm after that I visited with Aunt Josie when Andy was a baby at my mothers,then at funerals,lastly when my mom died 8yrs ago,so she means a great deal to me.Did you ever hear the saying its easy to talk the talk but hard to walk the walk!

    1. Good grief. I tell you one thing, and you CHOOSE to misinterpret it. No, I don't have Grandma's address. Yes, I would love to have it. Yes, I know where she lives, yes I call her and she doesn't answer so I leave her messages, AS DO OTHERS WHO LOVE HER. If she doesn't feel ready to talk on the phone yet, she isn't feeling ready to see us yet either. Have you ever met my mom? You have no idea how difficult this entire thing is for her. Her heart is broken.

    2. Good grief is right.You are all brainwashed by some kind of religion that doesn't exist except in your own little world.You all know nothing about what you say or preach you are robots repeating words.None of you even know what love is.Love is your mother going and taking care of her mother maybe she wouldn't be so "heartbroken" or doesn't your religion believe in that.Don't put the blame on your grandmother that she isn't feeling ready shame on all of you.I guess after reading all the posts I wouldn't want any of you in my life.Maybe I've been fighting for care for Josie when all she does just want peace like she has.My mistake!Don't bother answering your entire site is deleted.


I like you too ;)