Saturday, July 11, 2009

The lost art of love letters.

Both of my grandparents (dad's) have passed away. My grandmother in 2005 and my grandad just a few months ago. My dad and uncle are slowly cleaning through their house. I went there yesterday to help dad sort through the memories. On a small table beside the door was a stack of letters that were now a light brown from the aging. I had heard of these letters but never read them. They were love letters from my great-grandfather to my great-grandmother when he was dating her. He worked for the Atlantic Railroad Station and wrote her so many letters that she saved. Here is one letter I found. My great-grandmother's name was Effie but we called her Deedee. His name was Joe but was "Dick" back in the day (both of my grandad's parents).

4:30 AM
November 21, 1915

My dear, sweet Effie:

Yours of the 18th just received a few minutes ago & I sure did enjoy reading it. That was a funny dream you had about us. With that part of it, about us being married and having a little Dick was so true. If I can get a job that will warrant our support, want to get married right away & if I don't get the job we'll have to wait until Spring when I come back here. I would like to quit railroading & am going to make an awful effort to do so. Effie, I sure do want to see you bad. Seems like I haven't seen my darling in two years. I know there hasn't been a second since I left you, that I wasn't thinking of you & wishing we were together. I am not making much money now. Just about breaking even. Have only made $47 so far this month. Well my sweet sweetheart, don't know a thing, so will go to bed now & get a little hay. Will take my annual bath & Sunday shave when I get up. Am feeling all O.K. Be sure and take good care of yourself & and above all, don't work too hard. It sure does get my goat, when I think that my little girl has to work. With love and kisses.

I love his writing, his penmanship, and his eagerness to marry my great-grandmother. I love that he wants to be with her so badly that he is trying to line up just the right job so he can provide for her. I love that he says things like "my sweet sweet Effie" and "my darling." I was saddened that letters like this are so rare now. It made me realize that letter writing like this was definitely an art in our nation's past-time and that emails, texts, and facebook messages are now our primary source of communication. Whether it's through email, text, or letters, I think the most important thing is that "love" is expressed.....but the art of love letters is so captivating and just straight up romantic.

Hope this art never fully leaves.

Here's a pic. of the letter envelope.


Matthew, Delecta, & Marli Claire Rollins said...

So so so very sweet! I got teary reading the great letter. It's so sad that we have resorted to texting and Facebook messaging, instead of taking the time to hand write a letter. Thanks so much for sharing this awesome post!

NatalieDeltaGam said...

oh, how beautiful! i love it!

Lanie Beth Sinclair said...

Wow!! What a treasure!

Lane Moore said...

Delecta: I got teary as well! Felt like I was reading "The Notebook" again!

Tommy said...