To: Lucy May Briggs, Ossian, Winneshiek Coy., Iowa
From: Hattie Buckland, Gardner, D.T., December 25th, 1882
A merry Christmas to all.
My Dear Sister May,
I recieved your very welcome letter tuesday evening. I had just been giveing the Briggs'es fits in Mates letter J went up to town to mail some letters and he got yours and of all the startleing news it contained "Wonders will never cease" when I read it I hollored hurrah so loud that it scart all the old batches on this section. Who ever thought that Frank was making "spark" on Ellen. dont it beat all how fond our boys are of the dutch. tell El to get him one and then they will all have one. perhaps he can get Annie Criss or the old woman herself. Well dont it seem strange to think Frank is really married I am glad of it and I think he has a real sensable sort of a woman just the right kind of a girl for a farmers wife. where are they staying. write me full particulars, what kind of a dress Ellen had and what kind of cloths Frank got and every thing like that. he will have to build him a house now. but the worst thing of all it to think that my blessed old Bagley is married I told J that there would'nt be one of my old fellows left by the time I wanted another man.
I expect Ada will live in town or is he going to take her to Canada. what become of Julie Oxleys fellow she had when I was down home his name was Dewat I thought. that Cresy is someone I dont know any thing about unless it is the one that had that flirt of a wife there in Ossian if it is I dont think she has got much of a man. well what did you have good for Christmas and what did old Santa Clause bring you. I guess he forgot us this time for he dident bring any of us a thing was'nt that to bad. we had chicken pie for dinner made out of lean meat it was real good come over and I will make another.
I wish you could see our little darling she is the dearest little thing that ever lived does more than forty cunning things every day she will make patty cakes with her own little hands she looks so pretty I squeez her most to pieces and she can say mamma.
I think it must rain new dresses down there the next time there is going to be a shower let me know and I will catch some I have'ent had but one and that I haint got done yet. what kind of goods is your dress. they are all real pretty. I expect you feel quite like a woman now that you are sweet sixteen. how is your health are you any better than you were when I was at home. you must be careful if you are going to school not play out in the snow much. tell Willie I think he is the nicest little man ever was to have more head marks than the big children. tell him to write to me again and Ma too I haint had but a few letters from her. how old are Charlies coalts that he bought is he going to run two teams next summer.
have you heard from Bluffton lately Uncle George will be apt to make you a visit wont he. is Carrie Rosebrooks dead we heard that she was and then that she wasent so I dont know. tell Kate that I have'nt seen her Childrens pictures she was going to send in return for Nellie's. and the Harts they will get every bodys and then never give any back.
well I cant think of any thing more this time so I will bid you good evening.
now do write soon I have to look look and look about forty times, "more or less," before I get a letter.
love to all
from your Sister
These cards for Ma.
Johnnie and Nellie send love.