This section is from the book "Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: A Guide To Correct Writing", by Thos. E. Hill. Also available from Amazon: Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: The How-To-Do-Everything Book Of Victorian America.
As a rule, the more frequent such letters, the more minute they are in giving particulars; and the longer you make them, the better.
The absent husband should write a letter at least once a week. Some husbands make it a rule to write a brief letter home at the close of every day.
The absent child need not ask, "Do they miss me at home ?" Be sure that they do. Write those relatives a long letter, often, descriptive of your journeys and the scenes with which you are becoming familiar. And, if the missive from the absent one is dearly cherished, let the relatives at home remember that doubly dear is the letter from the hallowed hearthstone of the home fireside, where the dearest recollections of the heart lie garnered. Do not fail to write very promptly to the one that is away. Give all the news. Go into all the little particulars, just as you would talk. After you have written up matters of general moment, come down to little personal gossip that is of particular interest. Give the details fully about Sallie Williams marrying John Hunt, and her parents being opposed to the match. Be explicit about the new minister, how many sociables you have a month, and the general condition of affairs among your intimate acquaintances.
Don't forget to be very minute about things at home. Be particular to tell of "bub," and "sis," and the baby. Even "Major," the dog, should have a mention. The little tid-bits that are tucked in around, on the edge of the letter, are all devoured, and are often the sweetest morsels of the feast.
Let the young, more especially, keep up a continual correspondence with their friends. The ties of friendship are thus riveted the stronger, and the fires of love and kind feeling, on the altar of the heart, are thus kept continually burning bright.
Detroit, Mich., Feb. 1,18 - .
My Dear Henrietta :
I have been to the end of my journey, and am now homeward bound. Another week, and I hope to kiss my wife and babies, and tell them that this is my last journey of the winter. One or two journeys next spring, and then I am done traveling away from home. What better news can I write you than this? Yes, perhaps I have better news yet, which is, that I have completed such arrangements, during my absence from you this time, as will greatly increase my income without it being necessary for me to travel.
Isn't that pleasant? How I long to get home and tell you all about it. At present, when not closely engaged in business, I am busy thinking of many improvements that we will make around our home next summer, being the very changes that you have so long desired, but which our means hitherto have not permitted us to make.
Kiss Sammie and Tillie for me, and accept many kisses for yourself. I will write you from Cleveland, if not before. Good night.
Your Loving Husband,
Galva, ILL., Dec. 26,18 - .
Thus, one by one, I expect, our little band of joyous, happy girls, so short a time ago together, will drop away into happy homes, which, if they do not make them, they will at least adorn.
And so you are married. Well, I had some intimation, months ago, that such an event might sometime take place, but really I did not think you would change your name so soon. Mrs. Charles Blackwell! - well, that does sound a little odd, I confess, but then it is a pretty name, nevertheless. I assure you I am impatient to meet you, and witness how you dignify the name.
Accept my most sincere good wishes for your future happiness, and tell your husband that he must be prepared to feel an interest in the welfare of all your old friends, especially,
New York, Oct. 3,18 - . My Dear Child :
I am sorry that you should urge me to grant you such an unreasonable request. Of course, nothing could please me better than to have my darling little Ella sitting on my lap at this very moment; but think how seriously the absence from your school, now, would derange all your recitations for this term. You must not think of it; recollect that all your brothers and sisters have been away at school, and always remained until the vacations. It is true that you, being the youngest, have been petted more than the rest, but it would be very unfortunate to have my indulgence interfere with your studies. You know that you are the idol of our hearts; for that very reason you should endeavor to become proficient in those branches of study that will render you an accomplished lady.
Believe me, my dear child, you will find school more pleasant every day, as you get better acquainted with your schoolmates; and, through improvement in your studies, you will steadily grow in favor with your teachers.
I will write Mrs. Mayhew to render your tasks as light as possible at first, and I have no doubt 6he will do all in her power to aid you.
Only a few weeks, remember, and you will be home for a long vacation, which will be all the more delightful for the privation you are at present undergoing. Your father, brothers and sisters all unite with me in sending you their love.
I remain, my dear child,
Your Affectionate Mother,
NANCY BENNETT. To Ella Bennett,
Hopeville Female Seminary.
Argyle, N. Y., March 2,18 - . Dearest Love: