Mrs. William B. Green "Hattie"  Letter, 1845 to her Mother in Vermont




Taken from Naperville Centennial, 1831-1931,  Copyright 1931, Fort Payne Chapter - Daughters of the American Revolution, Naperville, Illinois.  Transcribed with permission by Diane Bauer.

Through the kindness of Mrs. Wm. B. Green's family we are able to print the first letter written by her to her parents in Vermont, after her arrival in her new home, and a most charming letter it is -- giving a firsthand picture of those early days:
Dear Mother:--
                                   East Du Page, June 12, 1845,
   Come, lay aside your work for awhile and look into your daughter's home -- We will come from the East -- Wait while I let down the bars -- come, is not this a nice yard, larger than yours.  Notice the large oak trees -- twelve -- what a nice shady place.  But come on, since the outer part is ragged to behold -- naught but logs, their natural form and color, walk in
-- take my large rocking chair, is it not easy?  What a nice room 15 X 16 -- My hemp carpet only three yards -- striped quite pretty and good.   My walls are white, although rough.  My table stands on the west side, and over it may glass and Wm.'s watch.  She'll have just an hour to write -- In the corner is our stand -- on it my lamp, workbasket and Bible.  We read
every evening --   commenced the book of Psalms.  My chairs are on each side, and our spit box by the rocking chair.  My curtains are up at the windows and they are so nice.  East side leads into the bedroom, also a large cupboard -- look in a moment. 

    Upper shelf devoted to sundries.  No. 2, groceries, a goodly supply, viz., one cake loaf sugar, paper rice, one raisins, two coffee, ground pepper, cinnamon, spice, ginger starch, indigo, cannister of first rate tea and my baking plates and pudding dishes.  No 3 and 4 -- tableware, breakfast, dinner, and teasets, tumblers, sauce dishes, castor, Brittania teapot and silver -- No. 5,6, 7 and 8 --Milkpans, 10 2-quart basins, one pint basin, 3 baking pans, iron spoons, grater, chopping knife, pastry cutter, etc.  Lower department -- molasses and oil jug, oil can, colander, coffee pot, stone jar of butter, one of bread and cake --

    Look into our bedroom, windows faces the East, bed stands South, wash bowl and pitcher in a chair.  Have not brought home our wash stand yet.  Wm. Is going to Chicago in a week or two with some wheat, and will bring them home then.  A six weeks washing is in my basket. 

    Mrs. Blinstom is coming to iron Saturday.  She washed Tuesday.  Can you climb above -- I guess not.  I'll tell you how it looks.  A bed is on the floor -- Could not bring the other bedstead, a trunk, chest of bed clothes, a bag of dried apples, bag of dried peaches, two nice codfish, etc.  We go down cellar from the bedroom from a trap door.  Nothing there now but a half-barrel of
salt mackerel.  Come a moment longer out the South door into my back room. See my stove, a premium stove, two ovens, a low one and an elevated one, four griddles, shovel and tongs, dripping pan, flat heater, large and small spider, copper teakettle, copper boiler, flats, dipper, iron pot, dish kettle basin and brass kettle.  Then there is my wash tub and rinse and washboard, milk, water and mop pails.  Here also hang my broom and mop. Here is my wash basin and you will find the towels by the door.  My dish pan is turned down on a large box, and under is some mustard and onion tops for lettuce for dinner.   Let me look into the oven lest my Indian pudding be burning.  Wm. bought me a cook book.  Could not do without it.
    I am quite contented, now I can sit under my own oak tree, and this is our home.  Do come this Fall and stay all Winter.  You shall have a bed in the sitting room by the stove.  We would make it so comfortable.  Wm. said yesterday, "If Father were here, he would make our yard look better."  I think of you every day and every hour.  I am writing on my damask tablecloth.  Mother hemmed it.  My comprehensive commentary is on the stand -- my father's gift.  My pen is made with the little white-handled knife brother carried so many days.  Everywhere is something to remind me of home -- Tell Grandma and Grandpa every time I open the cupboard door our old fashioned china plate looks me in the face -- Love to them all -- I wish they would all write me.
    We have good and the best of neighbors, can go to meeting when I please -- Attended church last Sabbath at Naperville, quite a little place.  The house is new, not finished, the heaters seated on rough boards, and Mr. Lyman, the preacher, behind a table or desk.  Something of a contrast to our neat church.  Good-bye for the present -- must lay the dinner cloth.
Taken from Naperville Centennial, 1831-1931,  Copyright 1931, Fort Payne Chapter - Daughters of the American Revolution, Naperville, Illinois.  Transcribed with permission by Diane Bauer.
Previous  |  Next ]     [ Up  |  First  |  Last ]     (Article 33 of 167)