Crystal River, FL
Feb 22, 1920
From: William A Gray
To: Ruth (Barrell) Gray, New Providence, NJ
I do not want good old George Washington’s birthday commemorative of our
greatest American to pass, without writing a word to my wife, the greatest living American
This has been an odd Sunday in my career. It started with me in Ocala, a breakfast
at nine and then a trip to the Post Office where I found 2 letters, yours and Edwards.
We had planned to come here by train, but Bernie Conlon, Overland agent, said he
would take us down by auto and spend a couple of days fishing himself if he could get
matters straightened out. He finally decided to go and he borrowed a Premier car which a
widow has for sale and we finally got off about 6 P M, landing here about 8 P M, a trip of
over 40 miles over some very rough roads. We passed through a phosphate mining town
named Dunellen and phoned from there that we were on our way and to have something
for us to eat and they did, the finest roast turkey I ever ate.
The reason we were so late starting is that just as we were about to leave Ocala, a
chap came along and wanted to look at an Overland touring car. Conlon had one left,
which he was going to take on this trip. The prospect had a Buick 4 which he wanted to
trade in, and after a few minutes dickering the deal was made. That’s why we came here in
a borrowed car. While Conlon was busy at something else, I had to teach the man how to
run the new Overland.
The trip was very pleasant and I arrived here with a fine appetite.
This looks like a fine place for sport. It must be good for millionaires come here from
all parts of the country. Will be able to tell you more about it in a day or two.
I will not try to write any more now as it is late and I am writing in a small room not
over 12 x 12 and 4 men are sitting around telling fish stories. So much love for all and a
fond good night.
Feb 22, 1920
From: William A Gray
To: Edward Gray, New Providence, NJ
I received your nice little letter this morning with one from Mama.
Yes, I have seen lots of Orange Groves and picked the ripe fruit and ate it right
under the tree. I haven’t seen any orange trees in blossom but they say it is a beautiful
sight and the perfume is delicious. I took a picture, or rather Mr Massey took one of me in
the act of plucking an orange from a tree, which I will send to you as soon as I have it
printed. There are no banana trees here. It is too far north and they don’t do well.
Haven’t done any fishing yet, but leave this afternoon for Crystal River, and my next
letter will probably contain some “fish stories.”
I too, wish you were here with me this morning. It is warm and you could play out
doors without hat or coat.
Maybe if we have luck we will get a new Holmes car and next winter will put it on a
Clyde line steamer, and get of at Charleston, South Carolina and motor down here. This
would be lots of fun and we could see all of this country. Some of the roads are rough and
you need a light car for touring this country. The Holmes would do fine.
Well, Eddie, I hope you will write me again and tell me what you, Jack, Charlie and
Joe are doing, and any other news you think of.
Give my love to Mama and all the brothers and sisters, and with much love for
yourself and a good night kiss for you for every day I am away, I remain
P S Tell Katherine to write me giving all the small town gossip.