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THE COZY CORNER
January 12, 1896

TO CORRESPONDENTS -- When writing letters to Big Hat's department for publication, write on one side of the paper only. Printers never turn their copy, and the editor has no time to rewrite half, or even part, of your letters. Give your full name and address. Anonymous letters are never printed. These rules are imperative.


JOE C. GRAVES, Kosse, Limestone Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here I am once more with a great missive to worry you again, but as I am done picking cotton, I don't know what else to do. I can't think of anything of any importance to write about, as I never had any experience in letter writing until I wrote (or scratched, rather) to Mr. Big Hat's department. Jeremy Duncan, I will send you those pieces of wood as soon as I can get them. I have got the parperberry and blackgum, and I will get the sassafrass and wild cherry as soon as I can. As I can't think of much to write, I will try to tell the cousins of my trip from Alabama to Texas. We left Friday morning for Decatur, where we were to take the 12 o'clock train. We stayed there about two hours and then departed for Texas. When we came through Louisiana we saw lots of sugar cane farms and saw men hauling cane with mules and oxen hitched to the same wagon, something I never saw before. I also saw oranges growing on the trees. We crossed the Mississippi at New Orleans on a boat. We came through Houston at night and got to Kosse at 5 o'clock Sunday morning. There was a cold norther blowing, and I said if it was that cold in Texas all the time I wanted to go back home; but it isn't that cold all the time, for one day there may be a norther and next day the sun will be shining bright and warm. Vauretta Faust, the next time you write tell us all about your pets. I like to read letters from cousins telling about their pets, as I am a great lover of pets. Last year I wanted a pet squirrel, but I could not find one, but one day while I was thinning corn I passed along by an old ash tree, and to my surprise there sat a young owl with half of a frog by his side, which he had been eating with great relish. So, determining to have a pet, I picked him up and started for home. But I had not gone far before he began hallooing for something to eat, and when he got started to eating he did not know when to quit. And I am here to tell you now that that owl died hallooing for something to eat. We are talking of going camp-hunting in a few days. If we go we will go down on the Navasota river, and when I get back I will tell the cousins what all I killed. Maybe I will have good luck like Rudolph Bollier and Herbert Taylor. My brother sold his gun and took mine and went hunting, and he broke the ramrod, and next time I wanted to go I had to take the rod out of the wagon to load my gun with it, but I killed three squirrels and scared another one into a fit, and made two more think that it was raining shot. Bessie Lyon, it was Eutychus that Paul raised from the dead.


FLORENCE EVANS, Greenville, Hunt Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have been reading the letters of the cousins with much interest for several weeks. The cousins have been writing from almost every town in the state, but as yet I have seen nothing from our city. With the permission of Mr. Big Hat I have concluded to join the army of cousins. I inclose you herewith 10 cents to go into the Monument fund for Gen. Sam Houston. I think this is a most laudable enterprise and will result not only in building a monument to the chivalry, courage and patriotism of the great Houston, but will also be a lasting monument to the liberality and enterprise of the patriotic children of Texas. In my next I will do as Cousin Rosa suggested, give the cousins a short write up of our city. Wishing Mr. Big Hat and all the cousins a Happy New Year, I will say good-bye.


BEATRICE SPENCER, Paris, Lamar Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I find in reading the different notes from the Cozy Corner that they are very interesting and instructive. Sunday afternoons are very lonesome and I spend my time in reading, and I think it will be a great pleasure for me to correspond with the cousins. I live in Paris, Lamar Co., Tex. Paris is the county seat. I suppose it is well known and has perhaps before been described, therefore I will make no attempt to describe it. I notice that some of the cousins are very fond of hunting stories so I will try to write one. A crowd of girls, I think there were ten in all, went pecan hunting last Friday. We started about 1:30 o'clock and came to the woods in about half an hour. We went into the woods a short distance and came to a stream. It was clear as crystal. We were all very thirsty and we made a cup out of sticks and leaves and had a nice drink. Then we all sat down to rest, but as we were not very tired we soon began to look for pecans. We all found plenty to fill our baskets. In a short time we thought we heard the report from a gun and became frightened and started toward town. My age is 12 years.


MARIE BELMONT, Dodd, Fannin Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Two of my friends have just written a letter to the cousins so I think I shall join you also. I live in Tishomingo. It is the capital of the Chickasaw nation,, but I am now in Dodd going to school. I stay with my uncle, Dr. T. J. Vanney. Tishomingo is a small place. It has only five stores, but I like to live there very much. Our teacher gave us two weeks holiday and I spent most of the time out at my uncle's. He lives about two miles south from Dodd on a large farm. My uncle has a crowd of children out at his house and we had a fine time pecan hunting and horseback riding. There is a schoolhouse about a quarter of a mile from the house and I went over and visited it. There was a small attendance, but I liked the mode of teaching very much. Well I shall wind up with my age, for I think there is a fine chance for Peggy. My age is 12 years.


EDNA WATTERS, Wilmer, Dallas Co., Tex. -- Good evening, Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As I have never written to your paper I will now make my first attempt. I go to school and study fourth reader, history, arithmetic, language, geography and spelling. I have two sisters, one older and one younger than myself. I love to read the cousins' letters.


LULA WATTERS, Wilmer, Dallas Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As I have never written to your valuable paper I will now make my first attempt. I enjoy reading the cousins' letters very much, that are so interesting. I am going to school and like my teacher. I study Texas history, algebra, grammar, physiology, geography, United States history, spelling and arithmetic. I have two sisters, but no brothers.


ALICE O. STOKES, Wilmer, Dallas Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I will write you a letter. I am 8 years old and can not write very well. I am going to Ten-mile creek. We live on a high hill on the north of the creek and can see little mountains on the other side. We have a pretty place. I have a little black cat. Her name is Bobby. She is very gentle. Brother Frank (he is my big bud at home) has a black mare. Her name is Dollie[?]. Oh, she is so pretty and gentle. Sis and I can hitch her to the buggy and mamma can drive her anywhere. Frank and his cousin went on a camp hunt in Trinity bottom and killed fourteen squirrels. He loves to hunt and some times he catches o'possums. I do not like them. Their tails are too slick. I reckon the hair all froze off their tails. Frank kills lots of Mollie cotton-tail rabbits. Mr. Big Hat, come down and I will pop you some corn.


HENRIE WILSON, Bryan, Brazos Co., Tex. -- Little Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Is there room in the Cozy Corner for another little girl? I have had a merry Christmas and I wish all of you a happy New Year. I am in the sixth grade at school. My best friend is Mamie Parks. I like to read the letters the cousins' write. We are having two weeks holiday. I think it is so nice in you to give us a whole page for the cousins' letters.


LUCY WILSON, Bryan, Brazos Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here comes another little girl asking admittance to your Cozy Corner. I am 10 years old, and in the fourth grade. I study language, arithmetic, geography, spelling reading and history. I have two brothers and one sister. I like to read the page for "Little Men and Women." We did not have a Christmas tree this year, but we had a party for our church. My best friend lives next door to me. Her name is Jessie Garth.


SADIE LONG, Davilla, Milam Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I wrote you all about a year ago, but Peggy got it I guess. I had the slow fever then; four of our family had it. I am 11 years old. I am in the third grade. I got my name on the roll of honor in school last month. I had a fine time Christmas. Dr. Pitts and his wife came and ate dinner with us. We used to live in Hamilton county. It has mountains in it. My sister and I once went out on the mountains to gather plums and we got lost. We were scared very much. Here is a riddle: A million teeth and cannot eat.


OPHELIA OLIVER, Terrell, Kaufman Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I think you have a nice little band and I thought I would like to join you. This is my first attempt to write to the Cozy Corner. I go to school and I am in the sixth grade. I take up seven studies. I will answer one of Alice Valentine's questions. The last one is a broom. I have been reading the letters for some time. I live on Asylum avenue, and can see the asylum from our house. I have only one little brother. We are building a new Christian church and papa is the architect and has the contract, too. It will cost about $4500. I hope all had a good time Christmas week. I got a lovely poem book Christmas. All of the cousins talk about their pets. I have no pets only a pony that I ride. It is as gentle as can be. I go out riding very often. So many of the girls here go riding in the evenings. I am 13 years old. I think that Genevieve writes such nice letters and Lena Bumpas in Oak Cliff writes nice ones, too. I have lived in Oak Cliff myself and I would like to hear from some more of my friends there and would also like to hear from Miss Big Bonnet. I never read a letter from her. I will close by asking a question: Why does a miller wear a white hat? And I will answer Jacquette Rypinski's last question. It is a bird.


OTHO SHELTON HINES, Farmersville, Collin Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: After a Rip Van Winkle sleep of some weeks I come again. Well, cousins, did old Santa Claus visit you? The old gentleman came in on time at our Christmas tree. My, my! How we did crane our necks to see him! Came in at the door. He said he had to visit different parts of the world that night. I felt sorry for him, as he seemed tired. He presented all with something and went his way. I hope all the cousins had a nice time. Our school opens again to-morrow. Our superintendent gave us a week's holiday. Cousins, did you ever sit up to see the old year out and the New Year in? We are going to have a watch night at our church, but you know how sleepy a boy can get, and I am afraid I can't keep awake. Don't you think this is a nice custom? I do. I will ask some questions and close, but first will ask Olive Henesy, Roy Neblett and Burett Gouger to write again. Where are the highest mountain peaks in the world? What mountain range reaches to the Arctic ocean? A happy New Year to all the cousins.


NONIE KELLER, Deming's Bridge, Matagorda Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: I am a little girl 12 years of age. I think The News is a good paper. I learned my letters from The News. I would be in bed by papa's side and studying the letters. Cousins, what kind of a Christmas did you spend? I had a nice time. I spent Christmas with my little cousins, Blake and Alma McSparran. Mary West, I liked your letter so much, but your trip turned out to be a sad one. Write again, Mary. Next time I write I may tell about my trip to the bay.


LUTHER WHITTEN, Paris, Lamar Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: This is my second attempt to write to you. I saw that Peggy did not get my other letter. Mr. Big Hat, I went to a Christmas chimney, and you ought to have been with me. I had a tine time, and there were a heap of people there. I have been going to school two months. I see that two of our boys do not love to go to school, but I am not like them. I do love to go to school. I have a good teacher. My studies are spelling, reading, arithmetic, grammar, history, geography and penmanship. Mr. Big Hat, you had better come and spend the winter with me and go to school. I know you would like to. I will ask some questions: On what day of the month will Easter come in 1896? When and where did Franklin die, and where is he buried? I will be 5475 days old the 5th day of February. How many years old will I be?

[Mr. Big Hat's response]:
When you come again, Luther, tell us what a Christmas chimney is.


MYRA L. BROWN, Whitney, Hill Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Christmas has come and gone, and I hope all of you had a merry time. Christmas was a lovely day here and so was New Year. It was quiet, but then I like quiet days. Bessie Smith, I wish that I could see you. We are only five miles apart. I am at my aunt's now, but my home is in Hillsboro. I spent Christmas here. Mr. Big Hat, if you were here some afternoon and had Peggy with you, you could go riding with me and my cousins, for we sometimes ride around on old Kate an hour or two. We went to the Christmas tree at Towash. My little cousins are attending school now. I hope that I may go soon. Miss Big Bonnet, come again. You write too seldom. Well, cousins, I was glad to see that I was the third to contribute money for Sam Houston's monument. I would like to correspond with some girl 12 or 13 years old.


ROSA LEE HAMBLEN, Moody, McLennan Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As I saw my other letter in print, I thought I would write again. I don't go to school now. I stopped before Christmas. I don't think I will go any more. Just think! to-morrow is New Year's day! A happy New Year to you, Mr. Big Hat! What kind of a Christmas did you have, cousins? I had quite a pleasant time. I didn't go to the Christmas tree, but I had a splendid time shooting Roman candles and fire crackers at home. I went to a birthday party Saturday night and had a good time. We had a musical concert Christmas night. I played a piece and was in a dialogue. I forgot to tell you that the concert was a complete success. It was at Rice's opera-house. I will be 13 years old the 2d day of January. My little brother was 4 yesterday, the 30th. His name is Arthur Latane. I got a nice book Christmas. The title of it is "The Family Circle."


MARIE TAYLOR, Itasca, Hill Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Seeing my last letter published, I have the courage again to ask admittance into the Cozy Corner. Yes, and if I be permitted to sit by Genevieve Myrdoch, I shall be more pleased; for her letter last week, cousins, was quite entertaining. Don't you think so? And I like her more, for her favorite novelist is Dickens. How I wish we might spend some of these dreary Saturday evenings alone with Dickens! Of all writers, he is my favorite. I could not praise him enough were I to write all day, so I leave the remainder to be taken for granted. What do you think of Poe, cousins? Had I a feather from an angels wing, dipped in the waters of the celestial fountain, I could not express my admiration of his poem, "The Raven." No one but a true genius could have written that famous poem, each line coming from his soul. Of what do you think the raven and Lenore are the emblems? I think the raven is his evil nature, and Lenore the good spirit which he had lost. How many admire Longfellow's "Evangeline?" I think it grand, and that it contains many beautiful lines suitable for quotations. Well, cousins, how have you spent Christmas? I was disappointed, for I wished it to be snowing, so it would look more like Santa Claus and Christmas, with snowballing and skating, and be like the angel, wreathed with a halo of heavenly light, speaking to the earth, "wrapped in silence, deep and white." "Peace on earth, good will toward men." But, of course, as it was Christmastide, we all felt jolly, and the week passed pleasantly, with cakes, turkeys and presents and -- "painkiller." Herbert Taylor, I am very much interested in you, as you have discovered ere this, so let us hear from you again. Take another trip and visit the moon, like I did. He lives in grand bachelor splendor (I am speaking of the man in the moon), whom we girls of the earth adore), is quite handsome, and it would profit some of our old maids to emigrate! I also visited Jupiter and Mars. With that fable, I will bid you all adieu.


MAUD CARSON, Mount Vernon, Rowan Co., N. C. -- Little Miss Big Bonnet: I will write to you this time, as I enjoyed your letter so much. I hope you will answer this letter. I know Mr. Big Hat is kind enough to let you answer the letters that are written to you by the cousins. Well, cousins, gloomy old winter is here. We had a little snow yesterday morning for the first time (Dec. 28). Summer is my choice, with its beautiful flowers and pretty green grass, and above all, its delicious fruits. I do not enjoy Christmas as much now as I did when Santa Claus used to come see me. I did not have much this year; grandpa died Christmas day. He was 83 years old. Maud Burk, is your father's name Dick? If so, my father knows him very well. One of my friends, Minnie Fleming, has gone to Tennessee to go to school. I miss her so much. I was glad to see a letter from Mabel L. Sweetman and Lawrence C. Fountain some time ago. Lawrence, you had better conclude to come to our state. We certainly will give you a hearty welcome. Since I wrote last my brother Willie has gone to Texas. I have two brothers in Dallas now. Mr. Big Hat, I certainly did enjoy the story you told about Hannibal, and I hope you will have another as interesting to tell in the near future. I have had a good many pet chickens, but I could never raise them. I have two lovely pet cats that I think a great deal of. I do not think anybody can have anything nicer than pets. Lawrence W. Neff, I have no piece to send you, but would be pleased to receive a copy of your paper. Lellah Pelt, Lilly Rowe and Abner Williams write splendid letters. Minnie Lee, we all give you a hearty welcome. Our school will commence Jan. 6. I do not know whether I will have time to write any more after school begins. Our school was to begin in November, but our teacher got sick, so it was postponed. We will have a right long session, I think. Lena May Wiese, judging from your letter, I think you have a good education. I always like to read them. Susie Belle Fisher, I have never read "Les Miserables," by Victor Hugo, but would be delighted to read it. Burett Gouger, you certainly do write a good letter. Joe and John Carson are my uncles. The one who works at the coal yard in Dallas is my cousin. Burett, was your mother a Bostain? If she was, you and I are related. Didn't you all move from China Grove, N. C., to Texas? My home is not near Vanderbilt's mansion, as that is in Asheville, N. C. I live near Third creek, but do not live in the bottoms. Cousins, do any of you know a man by the name of Tom Powlas? He left North Carolina about ten years ago. He was a cowboy when heard from last. I do not know what part of Texas he was in. The next time I write I will send you all a story of Henry Clay's old home, if Mr. Big Hat will allow me. I will tell you all in time, not to expect much of me. Cousins, I have begun a woolen quilt and I would be very glad if you all would send me some woolen pieces. All should write their names on a piece of paper and pin to the pieces. Katie Norton, come again soon. I like to read your nice letters. Louise Groce, it must have hurt you when you ran that needle in your knee. Kate certainly was a smart cat. Well, cousins, the sun is setting. I must soon stop, although I want to sit with you all as long as possible. When I begin school I want to study hard and I won't have time to write much, but I am going to take time to read the letters, even if I can not write. I do not expect I will be missed from among the cousins.


BOB STEELE, Springer, Indian Territory > Springer, Carter Co., Okla. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Seeing so many letters from many of the states and only a few from the territory, I thought I would write. I enjoy reading the cousins' letters very much. The territory is a very hilly and broken country. Water and grass are plentiful. I live three and one-half miles from the Arbuckle mountains. They are in rows, about one-half mile apart, running east and west, and ten miles from the beautiful city of Ardmore. Ardmore has 8000 inhabitants. I also live seven miles from Birwyn. It is a railroad station of about 100 inhabitants. It is forty miles from here to Red river. There are not many Indians living close to us, but on Blue river, about thirty-five miles east of here, there are a good many. Some of them can not speak a word of English. Well, Mr. Big Hat and cousins, I have not told you what a Christmas I had. It was very dull. There is not much society here. All we have is preaching twice a month. I was born in Texas and stayed there till I was 2 years old. Then my father came to the nation. I have been here fifteen years. There were then but few settlements along the banks of Red river. I have been to school but very little. My age is 17. I will ask a few questions: How many acres are there in Texas? Who laid the cornerstone of the capitol at Washington? Which is the smallest state in the union? What is the furthest point ever reached north?


MARVIN ROWLAND, Mount Selman, Cherokee Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I am a little boy 11 years old and like to read all the little cousins' letters so much that I thought I would join them. It is very cold here to-day. We had a sleet storm yesterday and we had a jolly time eating ice cream. We had a nice Christmas here. I think everybody enjoyed our Christmas bow. We never had anything like it before. We thought it much prettier than a tree, and we had such a good old Santa Claus. I wish he could come twice a year. I haven't but one pet and that is my little dog, Tim. I think he is very smart. I am trying to teach him a great many things. I forgot to say anything about our fair. We had such a nice time. The best thing of it all was I met so many of my dear schoolmates. I have looked every week to see a letter from Patty McKellar. She said she was going to join the cousins. My father and mother say they can not do without your paper.

[Mr. Big Hat's response]:
Mr. Big Hat never heard of a Christmas bow before. Tell us what it is. Perhaps another year some of the cousins will like to try it instead of a Christmas tree.


MAUD ADAMS, Ferris, Ellis Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As I have never written to your paper, I will now make my first attempt. We have had some beautiful weather this week. I was 11 years old last September. My father is a farmer and lives two miles south of Ferris. Tell all the cousins that I wish I could see all of them. I have a pet cat. I am going to school and learning fast.


JIM BATTERSBY, Floresville, Wilson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: It is about six months since I last wrote to the Cozy Corner. I am not going to school at present, but will start next week. How many of the cousins had a good Christmas? Mr. Big Hat, why don't you wear pants? I think you are old enough. I began wearing pants when I was 3 years old, and you look about 6 in your picture. I think Miss Big Bonnet might make you a pair. Come again, Larett Faust; you write such good letters. I wonder whether Herbert Taylor ever got off that buzzard's back. I think he must be a very little boy, that a buzzard could fly away with him. Mr. Big Hat, I have the funniest cat you ever saw. When her kitten was little (he is a big cat now), she would go out at night and bring him rats, mice, rabbits and birds. One day she brought him a big snake.


MARGARETTE RENNIE, Dodd City, Fannin Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have been reading the notes from the different cousins. I find they are very interesting and instructive. Sunday afternoons are very lonesome ones to me, and I engage myself in reading The News. It will be a great pleasure to me to correspond with the cousins. I live in Dodd City. It is located near the central part of Fannin county. Bonham is the county seat. Dodd is six miles from Bonham. It is a very small town of about 350 inhabitants. Christmas day I was fixing to go out horseback riding and got up on a box to saddle my horse and the box turned and I fell and hurt my ear badly, and besides did not get to take my ride. I have a little friend, Beatrice Spencer, visiting me this Christmas. She says she is going to write to the Cozy Corner in a little while. This is my first attempt to write. I think we have the nicest club I ever joined. I was 12 years old the 13th[?]/18th[?] of October.

- January 12, 1896, The Dallas Morning News, p. 14, col. 4-7.
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