08 August 2012

Forget the ring - Send cash...

This envelope had two letters, one short one 'joking' about that pesky ring this time (or the order is off-its just hard to know at times), with an interesting P.S. written on the back.
The second letter –well, I believe it, but I don’t believe she did that! Alice –really?! ~the details are below (I’m not a total spoiler). Of course only she and Pansy know if the were sent together or just saved together for what ever reason, but here they are for you to read together…..


From Chula Vista, Cal

January 18, 1909

Your nice letter reached me – a few days ago, and of course, you know how very happy I am to hear from you- as to your business I am very glad, and hope you great success, and good luck.

Dear heart, I do want to see you so badly, and yet perhaps it means an awful long time. It grieves me to think of the many thousands of miles we are separated. Doesn’t seem exactly fair? Does it dear? Yet the time will come, when we will be so happy –wouldn’t we dear?

Honey you never sent me what you promised-don’t you remember? The ring – I want a nice big diamond right away. Ha! Ha! Yes! Dear, how I would love one and from you – Nothing could please me more. I’d love you oh! So much more – Yet! Could I? –No! I don’t think I could love you more than I do now – By! By dear heart, I am in a hurry and will write soon again.

With a nice big kiss-

..p.s. Will you tell me your first name, dear? Perhaps you think it funny-but I never did know it.
Ha! Ha!
                                                          Your sweetheart ~ Alice


My Dearest Boy:~
Although it has only been a few days ago since I wrote to you: giving you all my plans, and expectations.- But after all dear, I concluded not to go. (Abroad) or away from you. Honey I am so dreadfully lonesome for you I can hardly wait and feel I cannot.
Of course you must realize how hard it is: just to know of each other through letters, so I want to make this proposition with you.
If  you send me my fare, I will come to Woburn directly – I will see that you will get it back again. –As it stands I haven’t it; for my folks attend to the money matters.
They want me to discard you as I have learned lately, and this I can never do. So, dear, if you will send me the money to come to you I will make arrangements to stop at some of my friends in Boston or close by –as I am always welcome to come at anytime, and know for sure that part of it is o.k.  –So as to give, my dear
a (??) have to arrange things for the future, and it will not interfere with your work at all.  So dear, I will expect to get a money order by return mail,registered!!)
 You understand dear: from the way I write that I can not go away with out seeing you. Then I do not want to leave you.  My chum wrote me last night and told me to prepare for the journey = But the thought even scares me. I feel that I shall never see any on of my folds of friends again, when I am to stay a year at boarding school in Paris away from all my people and friends. I cannot do it; and know (??) will please you, won’t it dearie?
I shall not answers my chums letter, but will expect to receive the fare from you so I can come to you & I will give you your fair chance dear, to prepare for the future as I will stay at my friends homes. They write me to come, come, come!
But if I come, which I know I can now, as my folks, wish to blind me from you in all respects –even to hear from you – S0 I would advise you, dear to register all the important mail.
If they do not pay you back, I will when I get there for I will be (???) able to them. 
Loads of love, dearest-but don’t keep me waiting as I want to see you so badly. For I love you so much and know you love me.
                          ---keep this letter quiet to all, please--

01 August 2012

Put A Ring On It - 100 years before Beyonce...

NOTE: When I found this tin of letters I ordered the letters by the postmark (Alice did not date her letters) – which is not always legible and it seems the ‘15’ was a ‘12’ and this letter came before the last. Clear as mud? – seems Alice had made some demands that started the drama of the last letter….

From Chula Vista, Cal

January 12, 1909

My dear friend:
Revere Beach 1909
Your very welcome letter reached me this morning, and seeing how anxious you are to hear from me I thought to write you immediately.

I am sorry, dear that I made you feel so blue and down hearted with the remarks made in the letter previous to this.  But I was quite confused just at what to say, and there fore reached you at the wrong time. Yet I ought to consider, and never be put-out or disappointed regarding your letters, as I know you are always very busy and don’t just understand what kind of letters I am wishing. You must cheer-up, sweetheart and I will explain, just what I meant by Saying if you do not see me now, you may never.  It is just like this dear; Previous to this letter you wrote, before this last one, I received a letter from my chum and she writes to ask if I would go abroad with her and go to a Paris boarding school for a year.  As I know her people well, and being such a good friend, her folks do not wish to send her alone.  And on the account of business, it is impossible for them to go.  So they wrote and asked me.  I haven’t answered yet, but, should, as they are anxious to know.  We do not sail until the third of June.  But, before that time, I should be in San Francisco, preparing for my trip.

I know I will return dear but it may not be for years to come yet. I will try and see you before I leave the Atlantic coast. I know dear, I shall enjoy the trip and school abroad, But I do want to see you so badly before I go.

Perhaps I shall not go – I haven’t told her yet. But I want you to come. –If you do, I suppose all my plans and arrangements must be broken. Why don’t you send me that birthday present dear? Don’t be afraid to risk it. By risking it – perhaps you will save some Unnecessary thinking. So I will be expecting it any day. I will be true to you dear as long as you are to me, and in one way I wish to see you personally, instead of writing it out on paper……

Revere Beach, MA 1909
 Would you kindly give Mr. MacDonald my regards, and thank him for the postal’s he sent me of “Revere Beach”. Tell him he didn’t keep me guessing very long as I recognized his writing immediately.

I love you dear and want you to write more affectionately.

Perhaps I am a bit quiet, but I am very funny as all say –and I expect more for our (??) than I would give myself.
Send me it, dear, that is the ring. I know what you meant when you first told me. Then I know you are coming.

Don’t be measy, dearie for I will be willing to wait until February. Before that (??) I will not write you much about myself and yourself etc.

Hoping to hear from you directly.

13 July 2012

Alice Enters 1909 With a LONG Letter...

Oh boy –I think she upset poor Pansy the last time! To have been able to read his letters to her! A quick apology for that and right into the “what kind of marriage material” are you questions she goes.  I am thinking Alice would have been fun, but a drama queen to know.

From Chula Vista, Cal
January 15, 1909
My dearest boy:
Your dear letter reached me tonight, and after reading it (perhaps you will consider me a baby) but I simply cried.

I must have been some what harsh, dear, to you in the letter which made you sorry and feel blue. I answered the letter you wrote, me first and hope to make things plainer in this one since I had your second letter. Oh! How I love it: because it is so very long; then again how I hate it, because you were feeling do down hearted.

Dear do cheer up, for I love you and you only. I know you can’t love me more than I do you. Yet you may think so.

Perhaps it is (?) for me to ask you to come so far to see me but I am so crazy to see you I cannot consider any thing. Your letter I considered very sensible and wise.

Now dear, once you asked me to be very frank in my expressions: I wish to ask you much, since I was always afraid to in the previous letters. Once fear and my only fear is this: Please under no circumstances show or repeat the contents of this letter or other letters to any one. And if on any certain occasion kindly ask my permission. Won’t you dear?

I have much to guard against, and many to fear; even my people back east. Of whom I am referring – concerning there letters. “Mums” the word. Not that I think you do, but just to remind you, dear.

Our Pansy worked in the building to the far left on Main St., Woburn
You want me, dear, to be your wife, and I love you enough to feel as though you are to be “him”. You are a good Catholic man, and of course you must realize I am a good Catholic girl – I cannot think for a moment, dear, that you ever or would do a wrong to any body. No one could tell me differently.

Dear, I consider how wise you were after all; to stay with the firm you are working for perhaps if you care. I would not be prepared to be “yours” etc – I realize, Dear, that you are not rich and the expense of travel is great across the continent.

Now what I wish to ask, dear, if you will not consider it rude or curious etc. – but since we have gone so far as promising each other many other simple things. I would like just how much you are making each month, and the amount you have already saved. So I can get a good idea how you are standing. Do you remember, dear, the last time I saw you-the “good-by” question? Ha! Ha! – I know you love me dearest, and will always as I will be true to you, no matter where I am.

Don’t be down hearted, sweet heart, for it will make me very sad. You must cheer up, and forget the past. (if it has been cruel to you). Think that some day I will be with you and console in all you troubles.

Your little gifts were so very thoughtful. I appreciated the flowers at school, etc. Dear, I want you to send me a large photo of yourself, and I am going to have my picture taken in a few months and will send you one. I am going to Los Angeles and have some “sepia” finished ones. I always considered it artistic.

Darling, you mustn’t say that you are thinking you will loose me in the long run. For you won’t.

Dear, please tell me some of your back life and of your people. Yet don’t do this if you think I shouldn’t know. But someday you are going to, anyway. You can always write me and I will remember you always.

Won’t you please write me your full name. Honey, I only know just Mr. McDonough.

I think, I will go abroad, so if my plans are wiser, I will tell you to come. First I must understand your situation in life, your position, etc.

Cheer up! Now and be happy for I want you to be.
Do you ever see my cousins at Woburn etc?
It is raining tonight and I feel just in the mood of writing letters.
Must close now.
-with all my love to the dearest boy.


P.S. Kindly give my regards to Mr. MacDonald


12 July 2012

Alice types a letter...

Two weeks or so after Alice wrote pleading for a response of some sort – a disappointing letter arrives from Pansy.   Our Alice put her new business skills to use and typed a response - I think Alice is a little miffed he isn't doing what she wants. What do you think?

From Chula Vista, Cal
December 2, 1908

My dear friend,

Your very welcome letter reached me a short time ago, and I was much disappointed to read of your delay in coming west, for I had planned so much, and do want to see you very much, but I think (from the way your letter read) that you will never see me here, if ever, elsewhere, for I am going east very soon, to boarding school and after a year of that I will travel.

I intend visiting Boston, but only for a very short time, for my friends will mostly be in New York and Philadelphia. That is why I would like to see you before it is to late.

I trust you to be so kind as to keep all I have said to you quiet, not that I would believe for a moment that you day what I write to others but merely wish to remind you.

Did you care for my picture?

Wishing you a very Merry Xmas and a Happy New Years dear,

Very lovingly,
Your sincere friend
Alice B. Wood

~I'll have another letter up tomorrow ~ Alice gets down to the nitty gritty this time (for 1909). See you all then.

05 July 2012

Alice gets impatient

Alice – “don’t chase the bus”!   I picked up that expression from Mary Delux  and her very funny and true Secrets of a Bus Stop Goddess. It has served me well and I  truly think Alice would have benefited at this point from reading Mary’s blog. 'Course if she did - my tin of letters may not exist!

We have two letters this week as they were short (and whiny, I think).
Xoxo ~Girlie

From Chula Vista, Cal

October 30, 1908

My dear Mr. McDonough,

It wasn’t a great while ago, since I wrote to you, but after I re-read your last very nice letter I concluded to get a snap shot of my self, and give you on; only I prefer to give you a lovely big finished picture. Anyway I will later on. Dear, did you get my letter? Why don’t you answer – or perhaps I haven’t given you time to answer yet. Only don’t delay to come. –you will wont you honey?

Write soon, and please pardon the awful pencil writing and also paper.

A.B. Wood

From Chula Vista, Cal
December 2, 1908

My dearest Friend;

I cannot see why you do not write to me. What is the matter, dear? Are you ill, dead, or what.

Perhaps you did not get my letter and a small snap-shot of myself  I sent you quite a few weeks ago. You’re not angry at me are you dear? If you are, I am lost to what caused it. But you’re not of course. Only why don’t you write and come West, as you said you would as soon as possible.

Possibly lay about the latter part of October or the first of November. Now, dear it is the last day of November and no word, regarding your coming has reached me yet.

Really I am very much disappointed about it, and could cry; But I dont dare, for fear you excuse will prove to be something serious, and I might keep my fears for something worth while. Ha! Ha!

Mr. MacDonald has never written me a word. I thought kind enough to drop me a postal. Honey, do drop me a few cards for a change. And tell me when you are coming West and all about everything. Boy you know, I love you, and I will always be such a friend to you. And dear you mustn’t forget my birthday present which you promised, as I am so anxious to see you.

Write soon, honey, and receive love from your little girl,

03 July 2012

Everyday Vintage - Vintage (most) Everyday

I love vintage clothing - but rarely find vintage pieces that that fit me (I am 5'11" and not of small bone). So, instead I tend to search for great vintage accessories for myself. They can be easily mixed in with current everyday wear and really put the finish on an outfit.

This morning was a perfect example - I was getting ready for the day job this morning - I just needed a pop of something for my summer outfit of jeans, navy tank and J. Crew seersucker jacket(♥). This chunky nautical theme necklace from the 1960's was just the thing to complete the unintentional red, white and blue theme  - Happy 4th of July!!

27 June 2012

Pansy wrote back and Alice was thrilled!!

I truly wanted to find a picture of the house where Alice lived for some of these first letters. With some help from a friend with access to Ancestry.com (thanks Diana!) I got the address and unfortunately  found it is now an overpass of the San Diego Freeway -very unromantic, I know. It was a lovely neighborhood with houses similar to the one in the picture below.

I also found out that our Alice was no stranger to scandal – but that’s an epilogue to our saga and a ways off yet. 

Here is the 2nd letter in the tin ~ Enjoy!!

From Chula Vista, Cal
October 19, 1908

My dearest Friend:

Honey boy! Don’t think for a moment I have forgotten you because I didn’t answer directly; But I was so terribly busy; I didn’t find time to write in answer to any of my letters need. So tonight I simply told my self that I am treating my dearest real cruel, by neglecting to answer his letter. So I am down to it, and by and try and make it interesting and as long as I can, to make up for all my “mean-ness”. Perhaps I’ll surprise you when you hear that I am very busy at short-hand and type writing. I have been studying some time at this course, and find it very interesting. Now didn’t I surprise you some?

Dear, I decided that on writing on such a large sheet of paper, I’d better write on both sides as it is so big. I’ll have a hard time finding an envelope to enclose it.

You disappointed me quite a bit when you wrote of your delay in coming West-but I was quite encouraged after reading further. That you’re coming will be no great length of time to wait. For, honey, I can’t wait.  I am awfully blue tonight, and just feel like crying when I think of the awful distance. (??) no. Tell me you are coming soon. Let me say that California, especially San Francisco is a fine place for the drug business, in fact anything connected with that is live –Doctors, or druggists in general. So love, you come to me soon, and then I shall decide whether we shall go (?) or not directly – Ha! Ha!

Do you believe in Fortune Tellers or rather what they tell?

Say, I have oh! So much to tell you – that I can’t begin to note it. And things I wish to give you that would be impossible to write –Ha! Ha!

Dear, I want to make you happy and you know I can do it. To make you who are alone in this world from relatives. – Happy! –

Say you are coming! Every thing will prove most successful here for you I know. This is a country where hopes are made brighter and prospects good. Rely on what I say dear, for I know. For a fact that what I say concerning business and prospects –in general are good.

A house from the area in San Diego where Alice lived
First of all you of course are coming to my house. We have a beautiful home, big garden, and plenty of extra room. Your coming would over joy me.

Dear, what’s keeping you back? Tell me, why you delay so long? But again I may prone a little bit too curious. Am I? “Love is always curious” Haven’t you heard the expression?

Dear, I must close –am getting terribly sleepy now. My sister is making a great noise in the parlor with her “best” who has been with us a week. Coming 7 & 13 miles to see “her” or the “country” I believe. He is from San Francisco, an English man recently from London. So we have to (?) a good time while it lasts.

With loads of love from your (own little girl),