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Letter from Ella on teaching, news from Forest Grove, and Bible study



Letter from Ella on teaching, news from Forest Grove, and Bible study


Letter from Ella to Mary Denison Lyman, the wife of Reverend Horace Lyman. She discusses teaching and a lack of Bible study, and requests news from Forest Grove. Ella was an old classmate of Mary.


?, Ella




Pacific University Archives

Is Part Of

Lyman Family Papers








Seattle, Sept. 29th, 1878

Dear Mary:

Do not think that because I have neglected writing so long, that I have forgotten you, one of my classmates. I have been, and am , very busy, so much so that I haven’t time to do as much as I ought in way of correspondence. My work in school helps me employed nearly six [?] a day, and after that I practice on the piano as long as I can. Then in the evenings I have my lessons to look over for the next day. It doesn’t take very long, but then a teacher cannot be too careful. I hear ten classes, among them two Greek, two Latin and one Rhetoric. One class in Latin is almost through the Reader, and is a very fine class, clever in members. Louis Anderson will take [Aubasis?] next time. I so much enjoy these more advanced classes. There are one hundred and nine pupils in attendance, so you see we all have to work. Mrs. Anderson teaches but very little this year, but the other four teachers are busy nearly all day. Prof. Anderson, Mr. Burnell and I teach until 3.35 P.M., and Charley A. most of that time. I get $50.00 a month.

I have received letters from none of the girls although I have written to all of them now. I hope to hear in a few days. It seems so long since we graduated, when I look at the class picture and then at the smaller picture in my album, it seems as if years instead of months had elapsed since that memorable day where we went in force to the metropolis of Oregon. I am so anxious to hear how the school at Walla Walla offends, and how your father, Horace, and Sarah are getting along. Please give me full particulars when you write to me.

How do matters and things propose at the Grove this time? I hear that the school is full, but don’t know any particulars. And how are you getting along as matron of your establishment? I know that you obey my parting injunction of giving your friends “lots of goodies”. Hence I would like to know who are Sam’s, Beckwith’s Branet’s, [Ceofelius’?], Whalley’s, McCoy’s, and all the rest of the boys’, “bright, particular stars”. Don’t let any personal feelings in the matter make you backward about telling me. “Your confession, etc” you know. I would like so much to hear from May Eaton, and to know what she is doing. I wrote to her and Sarah Borolby a week ago, and hope to hear from them soon. Elia is at home by this time I suppose. I am so glad she can be there this winter, as I feel so much better to be away if she can only be at home.

This is the [?], [?], [?] place I ever saw, but then it doesn’t matter much so long as I am busy. It is impossible to have a prayer meeting here among the young folks, as the school is conducted in such a way that is would not do. Two of the regents even object to the Bible being read in school, but it is done anyway. Things are very different in that respect from what they are at home, and I miss some of our privileges sadly. There is good material here for a debating society among the [?], and I shall commence using it as soon as possible. Prof. Burnell is a very quiet “nice” young man, he is so assured and seems very distant, but yet very pleasant. There is no fear that I shall quarrel with him as I did with Mr. Ferrin. By-the-way, how does this latter gentleman come on? I think Laura might write to me, as I wrote to her two or three weeks ago. I suppose she begins work in the store soon. We will move into [?] handsome new homes in two or three weeks more. It is in a beautiful place, and commands a fine view.

Mr. Ellis has built a small house near Aunties new one, and they have just moved. Mrs. Ellis is real well, much better than I ever saw her. Her children have grown wonderfully. Now be a dear good girl, and write me a long letter. Give my love to all the girls.

Your loving friend, Ella

So sorry I did not get to see Ina. Write to me all about her. If Elina hasn’t come home, go and see mamma all you can.

Aunt [Harris?] wishes to be remembered kindly to you.



?, Ella, “Letter from Ella on teaching, news from Forest Grove, and Bible study,” Pacific University Archives Exhibits, accessed October 25, 2020,

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