1898, March 22 – Letter from Rosalie Bauwens to Lewis Hesse with rose petals & newspaper clippings & theater program with notes

Rosalie sends Lewis rose petals that she wore in her hair, newspaper clippings reflecting on past & coming wars, and discusses the dress she is planning to make.  Read a transcript of the letter below (original misspellings & all) or click on the image links to view the actual letter. As you read the transcript of the letter click on the links to view information & images about what they are discussing.


Click on a link to view the image: (some images can be further enlarged by clicking on them once they open)

Envelope Front     Envelope Back      Letter Page 1      Letter Page 2-3      Letter Page 4-5     Letter Page 6     Rose Petals  Theater Program Page 1 with notes     Theater Program 2-3 with notes     Theater Program Page 4 with notes     Newspaper clipping 1     Newspaper clipping 2


Transcript of letter:

St. Louis, March 22, 1898

Dearest Lewis:

Your welcome letter of the 20, received and read.  I’ll answer right away.  Lewis you ask me if I forgot to mail the letter I wrote you on the 15 until 1 Pm> next day.  Now Lewis, as soon as I get through reading a letter from you, I always set right down and answer it, and as soon as I finish the letter I mail it, even if it is as late as half past 11 o’clock.  How that letter happened to be stamped 1 PM I can’t tell.  for I mailed it at half past 10 on the 15.  Perhaps it’s marked 1 AM, look again.  You ask what I think about your idea in regard to my picture.  Well I think you’re a silly boy, but if it does you any good to pet my picture, go ahead, and welcome too, just so it is my picture you are petting.  I see your picture also every evening, for I keep it in my little book.  By the way, to-morrow is my I.A.H. (??) birthday and to-morrow evening I will write to Mr. Cook.  I am sorry your head ached you so, I’m not free from headache myself just now, and if you didn’t feel much like writing then, neither do I now.  I would like to make my new dress myself, but think I would gain more by having the waist made as I am far from strong yet, and worry I have enough of this way, without sewing on dark goods at night, especially with fitting.  So I think I’ll get the waist made & make the skirt myself.  I’d like to have you with me to help me, But you know that without my telling you, don’t you?  Lewis, I didnn’t see Julie since I told you of her being down here and going over to Jennie’s with me.  I feel a little uneasy about her too, as I know she can get off when she wants to.  I didn’t write down her address when she gave it to me, in fact I didn’t pay much attention to it, as she promised to call soon again.  So I don’t know where she is, only that she was staying some place in the West End when last I saw her.  It’s almost 3 weeks since I saw her last.  I wouldn’t be a bit uneasy only for that when she was down here last, I thought that through her talk I could notice a misunderstanding between her and Mrs. Proctor, but she did not say anthing directly.  But this she did say; When she left the first place she lived out at, she did not go to her aunts to stay until she got another, (which she got the next day) but instead, she went to a strange woman who rented rooms to girls by the day or week, just as they wished.  She shared for that night a room with 3 girls, she had some of her clothes and 4 in money with her, she went to bed, and the next morning one girl was missing with another girl’s clothes and Julie’s $4.  I didn’t tell you this, because I didn’t want to make you feel bad, but I tell you now, to show you why I feel just a little uneasy about her, because I did not see nor hear of her since.  As soon as I do hear of her or see her I’ll let you know.  Well I hope your headache is at an end, mine isn’t.  Saturday I spent a passible day at work and in the evening I patched and crocheyed.  Sunday morning I went to church and in the afternoon we got the house full of company, Jennie & Will the baby & Otto and a friend of Otts; Mamie W. & a little friend of her’s, my cousin Ida & a friend of her’s.  But Lewis I wasn’t free from the blues by a long shot.  I fight against them Lewis, but that helps me none, for I got them still.  Sunday it rained all day and was raining hard in the evening, but I couldn’t tand it I had to do something to get rid of my thoughts for a little while at least.  so I left all the company and went with Edd in all that rain to theater.  But Lu I get so discouraged at times that if it wasn’t oh, let’s talk of something else.  I enjoyed real well at theater, for it happened to be a splendid show, and I’m not sorry for the money I spent.  I didn’t catch a new cold and only cough once in a while, but the last few days I have right smart side pain.  Well Monday I felt a little blue and tired for being up so late the night before, and I was longing for a letter in the evening, but I didn’t get any.  I went over to J’s in the evening and helped her a while in her new place.  It’s a very pretty place.  To-day was a miserable day.  Storming and raining and frightful cyclone weather.  The wind is blowing hard even now.  Mamma & I had hard words again after supper, and Lu, I’m heartily sick of it all.  But what can help it?  I don’t know, nor either where it will all lead to.  If sympathy and confidence could be found somewhere it would be different, but no.  Well enough of this Lewis for I’m getting, oh just sick, and if I don’t stop you’ll be sick to.  I send you a few rose leaves from the rose Enid put in my hair Monday morning and I wore all day.  They are all withered now.  Pray for me dear.  So good night with best love and a kiss I remain your discouraged but your own true


Please excuse bad writing and scratching, I’m so tired.  The Decklemann’s and the rest of the folks send best wishes and regards.


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