Oct 12, 1896
From: William A Gray
To: Ruth Barrell, New Providence, NJ
My Dear Ruth:
I cannot promise you a long letter but I must tell you how glad I was to hear from
you after so long an interval of silence, and how very pleased I shall be to see you
Wednesday evening if nothing arises to prevent.
I wrote you last night, not so much because I had something interesting to tell you,
but because, in doing so, I seem to be nearer you than ordinarily.
I did not send you the letter for a couple of reasons, the chiefest being that I thought
it too painfully dry and uninteresting and the other, that I wasn’t sure whether it would have
reached you at Lawton.
However, I will enclose it with this one, and the two together might make an excuse
I have been looking out tonight and wondering whether it is going to rain tomorrow. I
think we are entitled to something better than this in the line of weather and tomorrow
would be a good day for it to start in for the better.
I was very busy today and am thoroughly sleepy just now.
The boat “Puritan” which should have been at the pier at 7 A M didn’t arrive until
1:30 afternoon. She carries the mail, so that we had to crowd a day’s work in between the
hours of 1.30 and 5.30 P M.
I rather like the work, and although shorter hours would be much appreciated
generally, I am glad that my time was so fully occupied during the last week, because if I
had had much leisure, I know some very lonesome thoughts would have taken possession
of my mind. As it was I didn’t have time to measure the distance between us and my
thoughts usually turned to the circumstances of our last meeting, Thursday, Oct 1st.
So Ruth, on Wednesday we shall renew our acquaintance. I just long for some
songs and duets with you. The most dreary hours for me Sunday were those that, had we
been together, we would have devoted to that favorite past time of singing hymns.
Although I feel perfectly well I have to night a slight ache in the back of my neck,
which seems to warn me that my bedtime is already past.
So that if you will pardon this humble attempt at a letter and excuse the scrawl
(written with the best pen I could find) I will bid you good night.
By Wednesday you will have recovered from any fatigue which might have resulted
from your fifty miles ride, and I shall try to be well, so that we can have a real nice time.