October 20, 1895
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.
IRVIN YOAST, Rincon, Dona Ana Co., N. M. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I come to thank you, Mr. Big Hat, for printing my first letter. I cut it out and sent it to my grandma in Llano county, Texas. Mr. Big Hat, I can hold up my hand as a boy who can do real housework. I milk six cows, evening and morning, help my little sister wash dishes and help wash and iron the clothes. It would take too long to tell what all I do, for I help wherever I am needed. Now, I want to tell the cousins about our pets. We have six calves and my sister has a pet colt. Their mothers died in the Rio Grande. Stock raising has been discouraging in this country for the past few years on account of the poor range and low prices. But as it is now, cattle have increased in value and the range is fine. A man can ride all day with the grass touching his stirrups. Fine fruit of all kinds grows in the Rio Grande valleys. Mr. Big Hat, pay me a visit and we will go to the roundup and see perhaps 2000 head of cattle in one herd. I am sure the cowboys would exhibit their best roping and make the visit pleasant for you. Some people can hardly make out what cowboys are, but I am sure if you meet them once you would, find them nice, clever young men. Our teacher will be back from Chicago in a few days and our private school will commence.
JAY EARNEST, Dumas, Moore Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and Cousins: I hope you have room enough for one more cousin in your Cozy Corner. I have been reading the cousins' letters for some time, and as I have seen no letter from this part of the country, I thought I would write a few lines. I live twenty miles north of the Canadian river, on what is called the "Great North Plains." I like the plains very much, especially in the summer time. But it gets very cold here in the winter. We have to haul our firewood from the river. It is driftwood. During the summer, when the river rises, great drifts lodge on the sandbars, and as soon as the river gets down, so it isn't boggy, the people go to hauling the wood away. Mr. Big Hat, this is the finest watermelon country you ever saw. We had such nice ones this year. I wish you could have been here to help eat them. They are about all gone now. I would like to ask Cousin Ethel Pearce if she didn't once live in Lampasas, Tex. If so, I know her. As winter will soon be here, and Peggy will have to begin to store away his winter feed, I will close, for fear he might think this would make good forage.
EDNA NUTT, Pursley, Navarro Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I will ask admittance to the Cozy Corner again. Our school has not begun yet. I've been picking cotton. It has been raining here lately, and it looks like rain now. I stayed all night last night with my grandma. Some of the cousins talk about their quilts. I have pieces six. I guess all the cousins will sympathize with poor Birta. I do, any way. Maud, I would like to see your "cross-eyed baby" quilt, for I know it is pretty. Rudolph, you had very good luck hunting. Mr. Big Hat, you look so pleasant that you might live on your good looks, without working at all. I would tell about what funny times we had when we all had the small-pox, but it would make this letter so long that I'm afraid Peggy would get it. I will write about it next time, if I am welcome. I will ask a question: What makes a pair of boots?
JENNY LIND NOYE, Astonia, Ellis Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: I see some of my little friends are writing, so I will get mamma to write me a letter. I am a little 5-year-old. I have been to school some. Our school will begin again about the 1st of November. I have two sisters, named Mary and Ina, both older than myself, so, you see, I am the pet of the family. But I don't allow them to pet me much unless I am a little sick, then, they say, I am quite a baby. My papa is a farmer and I pick just a little cotton. Now, Mr. Big Hat, you may call me lazy, but I don't believe there are many little girls or big ones, either, that really like to pick cotton. Mamma says I am too little to pick cotton, and of course I agree with her. Don't you see where I am right?
MAUDE BURKE, Alder Branch, Anderson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: I am a little girl, 13 years of age. It has been some time since I wrote to you. I am always glad when Friday comes, so we can read the cousins' letters. I do enjoy them so. I have four sisters and four brothers. One of my sisters is married and is living about seven miles from us, and another of my sisters is now staying a week with her. Well, Mr. Big Hat, I have eleven little guineas. One of my brothers is going to school at Elkhart. I guess I will start to school soon. School is one mile from us. Elkhart is a little city twelve miles from here. They have good schools there. The name of our schoolhouse is Sand Springs. Mr. Big Hat, tell your sister to write. How old are you? I believe you are an old man. Jim F. Page wrote a good letter.
MAUD CARSON, Mount Vernon, Rowan Co., N. C. -- Mr. Big Hat: I believe some weeks have elapsed since I had access to the dear old News, but I haven't forgotten you all and never shall. I thank Mr. Big Hat for printing my letters. The cousins I have written to this department, have benefited me greatly. I have read a good many of Dickens', Victor Hugo's and George Elliott's novels. I am reading the life of Marshal Ney now. Mr. Big Hat, Marshal Ney is buried in the cemetery at our church. He was taken up a few years ago to see if they could find the piece of silver that was in his skull. They didn't sift the dirt, so they didn't find it. My grandfather went to school [with] him. Bessie Bee thought Mr. Big Hat's department was the most popular in the United States. I think it be the most popular in the world. Mr. Big Hat, doesn't it make you proud to have so many cousins speak about your valuable paper? I guess it's a good thing the cousins don't talk about me, for it would make me proud. Ludie Sanders, I think you write a real interesting letter. Among the most interesting letters are those from Susy Brown, Mattie Mabel Rigdon, Thomas O. Stewart, Lillie White, Herbert Taylor and Barton Scoggins. Cousin Barton, I have some friends in Roxboro. Cora Cannan, I am very sorry I made a mistake in trying to correct you. You know Mr. Big Hat asked the cousins if all of your answers were correct. I got my United States history and on page 20 it said: "Columbus was born in 1445," but, of course, Mr. Big Hat knows. How many of the cousins are saving Mr. Big Hat's department? I have got them all in my trunk. I have been saving them ever since we have been taking The News. I never expect to be without this valuable paper. I commenced writing to the department when I was 13 and I am going to write till I am 20. Oh, cousins, won't it be pleasant to look over our letters when we are old to see what we wrote when we were young? I think it would be nice of you all would save "Little Men and Women." My married sister is home on a visit. She thinks I have improved so much since I have been writing to the department, but I will leave that for the cousins to say. My oldest brother is in Dallas. He is coming home next summer. I certainly will be glad to see him. Cousins, didn't Susy Boles Fisher write a splendid letter? I wish I could write half as well as she does. I as well as the other cousins like to read long and interesting letters. A little girl said to me the other day that Mr. Big Hat didn't like cousins from other states. I told her he did or he wouldn't print their letters. Don't you think so, cousins? I don't agree with Bertha Reed and Ethel A. Pearce about wanting the girls to have all the department. I don't think any of the boy cousins are sleepy headed, especially those Mr. Big Hat named. I really do think some of the boys write as well as the girls. We don't read in any of the letters from the boys that they think they write better than the girls. They don't try to discourage us, girls, and I am not going to discourage them. Cousins, isn't that a sad letter from our little nameless cousin? I think we should all help her. Come again, Jesse Harman and tell us some news. I hope you may find Joe some time. Nell Fallon, you said you thought L. W. Neff was so young to be an editor (which he is), but what about Mr. Big Hat? He still wears dresses. I don't think Lawrence wears dresses if he is only 15. Cousins, wasn't that sad about Oklahoma? She certainly was a faithful cat. Mr. Big Hat, I hope you will soon tell us about your pet rooster, Hannibal. I thank you, Nellie Wortham. I am pleased to know you so loved reading my letters. I also enjoyed reading your nice letter. But you wanted me to write often. I think I do come often, and I am afraid a little too often to please Mr. Big Hat. This is the fifth time I have written.
BRAXTON F. RODGERS, Zephyr, Brown Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: Once more I take the privilege of writing to the Cozy Corner. We are enjoying the refreshing breezes of winter again, and the heat of summer is gone. We have gathered corn and picked four and a half bales of cotton. We must commence hauling cushaws and sorghum. We have had a good rain this evening and the clouds are roaring with electricity. During the past week, while thinking of how I was going to beat one of my neighbors picking cotton, I cut my hand with a saw. I have a very nice time going to preaching and singing. I am enjoying god [sic] health at the present time, though the welcomed cold weather did not cure the chills of the rest of the family. I have spent the summer within nine miles of home. Part of the time my kindred from Comanche county were here. One Saturday night four of my cousins came just as I was getting back from preaching. They got off the road between Comanche and Zephyr, and it was 9 o'clock when they got to Zephyr, where they got a boy to show them the way to our house. When my uncle came he found the road very easily. They all seemed to enjoy the trip, though just from Mississippi a little more than one year ago. They thought it was quite a journey to undertake in one day. They seem to like Texas very well, except the rocky part of sweet Brown. I guess they would think Brown county is like Arkansas, if they lived there. I will change the subject by flattering the cousins a little. I think most of the cousins that have written during the last month or two have done very well. I admire the compliments which I have received from the cousins. I have noticed that a girl away over in Kentucky asks what I have been doing that I have not written more letters, and another in Comanche would like to help me eat goobers. If she wishes yet to partake of the fruit of sweet Brown, all she has to do is to make me a visit. And if she would like to take a few home, we can measure them in half pecks made of cushaw hulls. We have goobers by the peck, potatoes by the wagon load, and cushaws by the carload. The goobers didn't do quite so well as I thought they would on account of the soil of sweet Brown being so good that the same vine attains so much strength that it will not fall down. I covered up one row of my goobers, and after awhile, with a little persuasion, it would have been higher than the others I believe. One of my neighbors has seen that Comanche cousin, and speaks well of her. I hope to see her some day. While going to my uncle's I might ride by and carry her some goobers if she wishes. It seems to me that Bessie Bee has become tired of writing to The News. I have not noticed any of her letters lately. I would like to be at the fair to wear a star for Brown, but I can not go on account of cotton picking and scarcity of money. There are to be shows at Brownwood on the 19th and 17th of October, and I expect to go to one of them. Some say they enjoy reading novels and playing ball, but I enjoy reading the Bible, which I think is the duty of all. I have never been to Sunday school three Sundays in succession until this year, and I am sorry I did not go before. I have now read through the New Testament, and will get a Bible as soon as possible and increase my study. I find there is more good in it than there is in running horse races, if one does occasionally get from $5 to $300 a haul.
MARY DORCAS WILHELM, Mount Vernon, Rowan Co., N. C. -- Mr. Big Hat and Cousins: As my other letter was fed to Peggy I will write again. I am 8 years old. School is out. My papa is dead and mamma and I live with grandpa and grandma. I have two pets, a dog and a cat. I live on a farm. I am out under a cedar tree writing. Come again, Aggie Kellie, Stella Oliver and Lizzie Lamar. I hope our Virginia cousin, Hattie B. Graham, hasn't forgotten us. I will ask a riddle: I have a piece of net work, neither wove nor spun; been in the loom forty weeks, and hasn't a thread begun. Annie Mayor asked why a good husband was like dough. I guess it is because if he wasn't soft. Mr. Big Hat, if your birthday is on Feb. 29, it will come only every four years. Is your name Mr. Big Hat, or do you just call yourself that? Success to the little editor. Give Peggy my love.
LULA V. ARMSTRONG, San Augustine, San Augustine Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As I am a reader of The News, and see so many nice letters, but none from this county, I thought I would write to your department. Some of the cousins write about their pets, but I haven't any except a little sister, 3 years old, and she is just as funny as she can be. I have two sisters and three brothers. We are nearly through picking cotton and through gathering corn. We can't make any syrup this year, because the frost killed out cane last year. Lawrence Fountain, come again. Ora Medford, come again, too. Papa and mamma both know you, and I like to read your letters. I go to school and study United States history, dictionary, fifth reader, geography, grammar and arithmetic. I will ask a question in history: When was the purchase of Alaska made, and through whose diplomacy?
THOMAS O. WHITTINGTON, Edom, Van Zandt Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: Here comes another one of yer long-legged, lanky, big-footed, sleepy-headed country boys for kids, as the town dudes call us. I'm just fresh from the farm, and it does seem as if I have just waked up from a long summer's sleep of matted dreams of hunting and fishing, to gather corn and march away to the cotton fields again. As I saw most of the other boys had waked up and written, I thought I would write too. Well, the hot summer days are over and fall winds are blowing. The trees are shedding their leaves and the fish come to bite. Oh, what a good time we farmer boys have had fishing during the summer months. I believe it is a good thing, anyhow, to be a farmer's boy and live far away from the noisy city and its many sights, out in the country, where fish and mosquitoes bite well, where bait is easy to get and where the best of health and life can be enjoyed. Jim F. Page, you write a good letter, come again.
ELMO DAVIS, Tacitus, Haskell Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Seeing my last letter in print I will attempt to write once more to the dear old Cozy Corner. The letters are getting better and better all the time. I can not express how I do like to read them. School will begin before long, and I will be so glad. But I might as well not be, for I will be in the cottonpatch a good part of the time. So you see it will not do me much good. I hope to get done before school is out. Oh, ye girls, you say you are going to beat the boys. I must admit that you do write some awfully sweet letters. You are going around the boys now. But come ahead, boys, we will get there after awhile. Miss Ethel, yours and Miss Bertha's, and Miss Julia O'Neill's letters get better all the time. Cousin Ethel, you said in the last issue of The News that you thought I should write first. I think I could appreciate a letter from you very much, since you girls are capable of beating up boys at writing so badly. Now, don't think I mean to make fun of your letters, for I do not, they are just as nice as they can be. And I, for one, will answer all the letters you write me. I will tell the cousins where I live. I live in the city of Tacitus, and we keep the postoffice, and my father runs a blacksmith ship. I sometimes act as postal clerk, as I may want to be postmaster myself some day, and I want to learn how to keep postoffice, while I am young. Well, Mr. Big Hat, you left out part of my other letter, but that is all right, for I know you have a great deal to do for such a little man. He is little in size, but large in mind. Good luck to the cousins and Mr. Big Hat!
September 15, 1891, and continued in that position until
the post office was discontinued, May 7, 1900].
FAIRRY CARTER, Newlin, Hall Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here I come again to chat with you this rainy morning. I was glad to see my other letter in print. It is so rainy this morning that we could not pick cotton. I go to school, and my studies are arithmetic, grammar, spelling, fourth reader, geography and Texas history. School closed this week so the children could help pick cotton. I like my teacher very well. Papa gives us children 20 cents a hundred to pick cotton. I never did get a whipping at school, and ain't afraid of getting one. There have been a good many boys whipped at school. I will ask some questions: Who capture [sic] Cornwallis? Who defeated Napoleon, at Waterloo? How many voyages did Columbus make to the new world? Who was the first vice president of the United States? Who was the founder of Rhode Island, I am 11 years old.
MARY WEST, Honey Grove, Fannin Co., Tex. Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have long been a silent and admiring reader of the dear old cozy corner. Every time I read the letters I think I will write, then I think what's the use. Peggy will get it. I don't think Peggy will ever want any more letters if she gets this one. How many of the cousins like music? I like it so much that I have been taking for a year. I like art much better than I do music, however. I took in pastelle last year. I haven't begun oils yet. I am housekeeper, cook and all now. Mamma went to see our old home in Louisville, Ky., about three weeks ago on a visit. It is the first time she has been back since we've been in Texas, nearly five years. Papa wanted me to go with her, but I wanted to stay at home and go to school. I told mamma I wanted to go to the Dallas Fair and papa said last night that I might go and see the cousins. I wish all the cousins could be there. They must all be sure to wear their badges. I know all the cousins like to go to school and we that have the opportunity should appreciate it very much. I won the $14-medal at the close of school for reciting. I was three years younger than the youngest of the others. I never won but one other prize, and that was a ring. Do all of the cousins go to Sunday school every Sunday. we have head marks to our class. I would have finished out my time last Sunday and gotten a head mark, but was sick in bed. I wonder if Mr. Big Hat goes to Sunday school? Though I know he does, for he must be a very good boy. Have many of the cousins been to Galveston? I think it such a pleasant trip. I went last summer and had a splendid time. It was such fun to watch the great white waves come in, and then break over you, but oh, they were salty. They unloaded and loaded the freight on Sunday. We went on board and it was very nice. I have gone on two fishing excursions this year and if Peggy doesn't get this I will tell about them in my next letter. The boys are doing splendidly, and if the girls don't mind they will be the sleepy heads.
LEE SYPERT, Rogers, Bell Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: The department has improved a great deal since I last wrote. I think Mr. Big Hat's department "For Little Men and Women" outshines all other departments. We had an ice cream party here Saturday evening. I think most every one enjoyed it. They had all the cream they could eat. The young folks went over to my aunt's last night and had a candy-pulling and play. I spent the night with my cousin. It is getting cold weather now, and the girl cousins will not have to spend so much time keeping their hair in curl and will have more time to spend on their letters, and of course they will be better. Jesse Harman may be a very good cowboy or newsboy, but he isn't a good judge at all; but I am very glad he has found him a home and relatives, for he must have been very lonesome all by himself in the world. Mary Battersby, I like the description of your home very much. If there is anything I admire it is a nice house, with pretty views. Joe Graves, I wonder how many boys lie in bed and let their fathers get up and build the morning fire? My father and one of my sisters went to Houston to attend the old veteran meeting, but I think they got rather tired of it before they got back. My brothers went to Galveston this summer on a visit. Our school will begin in about three weeks. It may not last but four months and it may last nine months. My real name is Leonora, but they call me Lee for short. I am 14 years old.
ROSEBUD MELMS, Pearsall, Frio Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: According to an old adage there is always room for one more, so I suppose there is room in your department for me. What nice and interesting letters some of the cousins write! Johnnie Price, your letter was above the average. "Shove" often if you can do that well every time. Girls may write well, but you write better. But I believe your name is John instead of Johnnie. Dora Bennett, your letter was one that would benefit any reader. I am going to look in The News for your picture. Mr. Big Hat, I wanted to join your Summer School, but could not spare the time from the school at home. I think it would be a good idea for every teacher of this state to collect those papers and have them studied in connection with their text book on Texas history. How many of the cousins have an ideal character which they wish to attain? I think we ought to select our profession while we are young and work toward that end during our school days. Girls, we must not let the boys get ahead of us. The professions are opening to us, and we must grasp the opportunity to "paddle our own canoe."
CECIL AND FRANK CANNAN, Angleton, Brazoria Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: We are two little boys aged 6 and 4 years, and you know, of course, we can't write, but got mamma to write for us to-day. We have a nice little saddle and love to ride horseback. We have a little brother 3 years old, and we three have a fine time playing together. We have lots of room to play as we live on a big prairie. We have a little dog named Jet and we hitch him to a little wagon and make a horse of him. But he doesn't like to pull a bit.
TOMMY M. SIMMONS, Rockdale, Milam Co., Tex. -- Little Mr. Big Hat: I am a little boy, and I expect quite a bad little boy, but I guess you will let me write to you and the little cousins. I have been pecan hunting this evening, and fell out of the tree and hurt my side a little. Just as I hit the ground I saw a large coon coming. As I did not have my gun, I thought I would fight him, but he ran away. School will soon begin. I do not like to go to school. Do you, Mr. Big Hat?
EUGENIA EMBRY, Hamilton, Hamilton Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here comes another little 10-year-old girl to join your happy band. I have been to school but nine months, so you need not expect good writing. I am in the fifth grade. I had to herd sheep one month. One day our dog found a nest of little rabbits. He caught two and I caught one. I brought it to the house and fed it, but it got away. I can pick 100 pounds of cotton a day.
LAURA ARNETT, Kosse, Limestone Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: This is the first time I have written, but I have been reading your letters a good while. My age is 9 years, and I have a brother who is 14. My schoolmate's name is Eva Robertson, but she went to Taylor last night, and I haven't any one to play with me now. I am in the third grade, and I study language and spelling and read in the third reader. My father is a merchant.
NELLIE ARNOLDI, Sherman, Grayson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: This is my first attempt at writing to you. I do not promise an interesting letter, but will do the best I can. I do not know any one that has written to you. I go to the Sherman Institute, and I think it is the best school in Texas. I study geography, spelling, Texas history, grammar, classics and arithmetic. I will study United States history after christmas. I am taking elocution and music. I am 10 years old. I have one brother and no sisters. I have a white cat, a white pony, but I am not red-headed, and all I wish for now is a bicycle. Did you hear about the drummer who took care of a baby while its mother went shopping? I expect you did, as it was in The News about three weeks ago. I like to read the stories and letters from the cousins in the Cozy Corner. I hope to see this, my first letter, in print.
BESSIE BEE, Burnet, Burnet Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I notice that many of the cousins are asking why I do not write oftener. I have various reasons for not so doing. The main reasons are that I have not been at home much this summer, and the time that I have been at home, mamma was gone and I was too busy to write. I am not afraid that Mr. Big Hat does not want me to write, but I think he is willing for everyone to write who takes an interest in his department. So now, dear cousins, after an absence of over four months, I again walk into the circle to find a welcome seat where I can rest and converse with you all a while. I am almost afraid to begin my narrative, for I feel somewhat abashed in the present of Florence Giddens, Evangel Bowman, Rudolph Bollier and others who have been doing well so long. Cousins, it gives me much encouragement to know that among so many nice, well written letters mine always find space and interest[s] you. Many of the cousins have highly complimented my letters, and I am so forgetful as to not remember the names, but I sincerely thank all for their kind words. Mr. Frank Alison (I believe that was his name) said that if I was like their bees I was quite spiteful. I guess that he does not know that if bees are not disturbed they will not hurt any one. One of my cousins came and spent two weeks with me not long ago. I enjoyed her visit so much. We do have such pleasant times when we are together. Her name is Ouida. She and I started early one morning to visit one of my friends. The journey was quite a distance, but I thought I new the way. After we had gone about ten miles we discovered that we were lost. We started back home, but the farther we got, the more we became perplexed. There was not a rock, bush or tree that we remembered seeing before. We started out to find a house, but in vain. After a while it commenced to rain. Oh, how we did feel! We did not know what to do. Ouida was scared, and so was I, but I did not want her to know it. It stopped raining after a while and we were able to drive on. It was not long, however, until we did find a house, and how glad we were! We inquired the way back home, and they told us. We had gone a very long distance out of the way, and when we reached home it was nearly night. How our folks did laugh! Especially one of my brothers, who said it was a good punishment for us, because we took his buggy and horse without permission; but I told him that as he had been taking other girls around so much in his buggy I thought we might use it sometimes. Mr. Big Hat, I was very sorry to hear about the death of Oklahoma. Most people do not admire cats, but I think they make just as nice pets as any other animal. I love my cat very much. Cats are very affectionate when treated kindly. Boys and girls, what is the matter? I hope we are not getting spiteful toward each other. I have not been reading many of the letters lately, but I take from some of them that the girls do not like the boys' letters. I think the boys are doing well -- much better than some of us girls. I enjoy reading their letters very much. I believe that more of the girls write than the boys, and I believe it is our duty to encourage those who do not write much. As for superiority, I think boys and girls are equal. Let's none of us quarrel about that. I had a good laugh over Rudolph Bollier's letter. Some of the cousins may think that he was rather unfortunate, especially when he wrote the letter. Can you guess why, Cousin Rudolph? Mr. big Hat, do you ever have any leisure moments? If so, I wish you would give us some knowledge about editors' work. Is it very pleasant? There is a Galveston News and a Dallas News, and I suppose there are two Mr. Big Hats -- one at Galveston and the other at Dallas. The other time I wrote to this paper I was rejoicing over the return of spring, and now I am feeling sad over the departure of summer. I dread to see winter come again, because it is so cold and gloomy. I will still feel lonelier, because I will be so far from home. I am going off next week to attend school and will be gone a year. I shall be too busy with my studies to write any more letters to this department, so, cousins, write nice letters and enjoy the pleasure of exchange of thought. I wish you all much pleasure during my absence. So, good-bye, Mr. Big Hat and cousins!
SALLIE WESTER, Wills Point, Van Zandt Co., Tex. - Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I like so much to read the young folks' letters. We live in a pleasant country home four miles from Wills Point. I am 13 years old. I like life in the country very much. One can be so free and have so many nice things that can't be had in the city. We have one of the finest orchards and have had fruit all the year. If Mr. Big Hat and cousins were here I would give them a treat of luscious peaches and apples. We will have fruit until the last of November. I am the baby of a family of three girls. My oldest sister is a dressmaker and my youngest a school teacher. They are away from home a great deal, so mamma calls me her "little housekeeper." Like the average Van Zandt county country girl, I can hitch a horse to a buggy and go to the postoffice, four miles away, by myself. Cousin Maggie Jenkinson objected to our telling about our pets. But if Mr. Big Hat is so kind as to print this letter she need not read any more of it, for I must tell Mr. Big Hat and the cousins who like to read of pets about my pet chicken. She was left with five others without a mamma chicken to look after her. The cats caught all of her brothers and sisters and broke her leg. I called her Pegleg at first, but as she got older she got so she could walk all right and I changed it to Peggie. She knows her name quite well and will come any time I call her. She comes three times a day to get her meals. She eats from my hand, and as she sits knowingly on my lap, she talks all the time, and as it appears so interesting I almost wish I was like the man in the "Arabian Nights Enterments," who was able to understand the language of chickens. If I see this letter in print I will write again, and in my next I will tell you what I think it is that Peggie says as she eats.
MAY SANDEL, Wellborn, Brazos Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: It has been a long time since I wrote to the Cozy Corner, and although I have attempted to write several times since, I have always failed to send my letters off. I studied the Summer School lessons and sent my answers off last week. I do hope I will receive a diploma, but would be surprised if I should receive one. I enjoy reading the letters in the Cozy Corner. Most all of the cousins write interesting letters. I am somewhat timid about writing, as the other scan compose letters so much better than I can. I have been reading the letters in this week's paper, and notice that many of the cousins are in trouble. I sympathize with them all, especially Berta Langhram. Berta did you ever read this verse:
still sad heart and cease repining.
How true and beautiful those words are! and they are so comforting. I think Mr. Big Hat has a very kind heart. He writes such sympathizing letters to those who are in trouble. School here will not begin until the last of this month, and then I will be so glad. I have several new studies that I am anxious to begin. I will have the dear same teacher I had last year. I am 15 years old. Mr. Big Hat, I think your story of Oklahoma was very good. You must write us another true story. How many of the cousins have had a nice time this vacation? I, for one, have not enjoyed it very much. I think it is our duty to embrace every opportunity to have a good time while we are young, for
the pleasures of to-day
ONA HINES, Hellandville, Ellis Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I wrote to you after the burning of the spring palace. I then lived in your city, and I have just moved to Hellandville, a little railroad village, situated on the Texas Central. I can overlook four counties. This is quite a change for me. I have given up my pets since I wrote you before. I am now 13 years old. I have nothing much to amuse me now, only reading and writing letters, and you may expect to hear from me again, as I have become interested in reading the letters that have been written to you. I will try to have something more interesting when I write again.
JOHN L. HANDLEY, Lane, Hunt Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I concluded this bright, beautiful morning that I would drop in a few moments and chat with you all a little while. I am well -- how are you? Well, the first subject we will talk about will be our Summer School. I finished my lessons and sent them off at last. Yes, it was "at last," sure enough. I sent the papers off on Wednesday before the time was up, on Friday. I suppose they will be all right if they got there by Friday, for, you know, the Bible says, "They that come in the eleventh hour will be rewarded as highly as those that come in on the ninth hour." I guess you all would like to know my excuse for being so late. I had to pick cotton all day and did not have much time at night. Some of the country cousins will know something about it. Mr. Big Hat, I believe Texas topography was the most interesting subject I ever studied. I did not know that we did have such a grand state as Texas. What do you all think about it, cousins? How many of you are going to the great State Fair at Dallas? I think I will be there, and I want to see that little man they call Mr. Big Hat. But I want to know one thing more, and that is, how are we to know Mr. Big Hat and the cousins from anybody else? Well, I guess I had better be going. I hope to meet you and some of the cousins at the fair.
Hamilton, Hamilton Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: By request
I will tell you of the adventure I once had with a ghost, but
before I commence I just want to say that the story I am going
to tell is true. It happened in the fall of 1893. Mamma and papa
were not at home. There were only three of us, two sisters and
myself, at home. We were sitting that night at the supper table,
talking about ghosts, and the girls asked me what I would do
if a ghost came that night. I told them I would not care if one
did, but you will see that I did care a little.
I want to stay all night."
I ran back to the house and got my target rifle that was standing inside of the door, loaded. When I came out again he had disappeared, and I said to him: "Now, see here; if you come inside of this yard to-night, you are a dead man." So he got on his horse again and rode off. And that was the last of my ghost, and I was glad of it. For what purpose he came I never found out.
JOSIE L. ATKINSON, Palestine, Anderson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and Cousins: I like to read the cousins' letters so much. I think we learn a great deal by reading them and Mr. Big Hat's letters. I like to go to school. Our school will begin the 4th of November. Our teacher is a young Baptist preacher, and I hope he will be a good teacher. I study geography, history, grammar, spelling and arithmetic. I did not join the summer school, because I thought it would be too hard for me, as I have never studied Texas history. Cousins, you don't know what a sweet little brother I have. He is 2 1/2 months old. My only other brother will soon be three years old. He is so mischievous. Papa tells him to say "Yes, sir," but he says, "Papa, I tan't say wes sir," and he won't say it, either. There is only one little girl of my size in this large neighborhood, and that is Eula Pierce. Ethel Pearce, I don't suppose she is your relative, because you spell your name differently. Little sister Jessie and myself have been quite sick. It is very cool to-day and we had a fire, the first we have had this fall. To -day is my birthday. I am 11 years old. Mr. Big Hat, I would appreciate one of your pictures for a birthday present. I will send a stamp and I want you to send me one. Evangel, I enjoy your letters so much, come again. Cousins, can any of you walk the barrel? You ought to see me walk it. I can walk it as fast as I can run. I can milk, iron, help wash the clothes, cook, and clean up the house. I have three sisters, two older than I and one younger. I am the only blue-eyed girl mamma has. My two little brothers have blue eyes. I have tried to write my letter with ink, and have put so much on it that I know Peggy won't want it. Oh, I like to have forgotten that I wanted to guess what Mr. Big Hat's handsome steed is. If it does not require either food or water, I think it must be a bicycle.
EDWARD HORN, Wills Point, Van Zandt Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As it is my birthday, and as I have nothing else to do, I will write a few lines to the dear old department. I feel encouraged to write again, as I saw my last letter in print, for I thought sure Peggy would get it. Well, school has begun, but I did not get to begin when it did, but will soon, as we will soon be done picking cotton. We have picked out eight bales this year, while at the same time last year we had out twelve bales. Cousins, how many of you are going to the fair? We all ought to meet there and register in Mr. Big Hat's register. I would like to go, but I don't see how I can. I received a letter from one of my northern cousins. I was surprised to get a letter from him. I guess you will all know who he is when I tell you his name. His name is Lawrence C. Fountain. He is one of our model cousins. He is talking of coming to Texas, and we will all welcome him to our sunny lands and white cotton fields. Cousins, what do you think about Rudolph Bollier's letter about going hunting? I have been hunting several times, but never had such luck as that. Rudolph, come again, and write another letter like that, or one as interesting. I will write next time a description of Buford a battle ground, in South Carolina, my old home. The battle was fought in the revolutionary war, between Col. Buford of the American and Col. Tarleton of the British army. I am going to take a trip soon up in Hunt county, to visit my aunt, and I will write all about it to the cousins.
ERA BEVILLE, Como, Hopkins Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: This is my second attempt to write to the young people's department. We have had a nice rain this week and it is now pleasant weather. There is a big singing school going on now. It began last night and I am going to it. I had already been to one singing school this summer. Cousins Clemmie Hennel and Otis Walsh, you must excuse me for not answering your letters sooner. Cousin Rudolph Bollier, you are a splendid marksman. I have a small brother, only 11 years of age, who says he wishes you would visit him and teach him how to be a good shot, too. Mr. Big Hat, how long will it be before we will hear from the examination? I need not be asking, though, for I do not expect I will get anything. We had a big day at Forest Academy last Sunday -- preaching in the morning, literary service of the Epworth League and splendid singing in the evening. Cousin Maud Foy, you were speaking of different quilt pieces. If it would not be too much trouble, I wish you would send me the "cross-eyed baby" pattern.
MAE ATKINSON, Palestine, Anderson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Seeing so many good letters this week, I thought I would write. Last Saturday a crowd of us went grape-hunting. There were eleven of us and we all went in one wagon. One young lady had a sore hand and could not get any grapes, but she had a devoted escort. I will tell the cousins about my ride last Sunday. Several of my friends and myself started to visit a lady friend living about five miles from home. We arrived at our destination and, alas for us! there was no one at home. We then thought we would go to another farmhouse, about two miles from this one, but we met with the same fate as before. We visited several other houses, but finding no one at home, we decided that our own home was the best place for us. It was after 12 o'clock when we arrived at my friend's home. We were soon repaid for our fatiguing journey by a nice, refreshing dinner. I hope the "we's" in my letter will not be like the little girl's "awful." My age is 15 years.
BURETT GOUGER, Red Oak, Ellis Co., Tex. -- Dear Big Hat and cousins! I enjoyed reading the cousins' letters very much last week, although I was expecting to see a few letters from Red Oak, after having such a large ice cream supper week before last. Cousins, we had a real nice supper in our little village a few weeks ago. I think there were somewhere between 300 and 400 people present. Its purpose was to secure money to buy two bells, one for the Presbyterian church, the other for the schoolhouse. We had some real pretty girls waiting on the tables, but I felt very sorry for them, as they had no chance at all to talk. Anyhow, those girls collected $58. Our school will commence the first Monday in October. Many of the faces that were once seen playing beneath the schoolhouse eaves may be gathered together some future day. But a few have taken their position in life to teach school. I hope they will have success. And may they be rewarded at last by seeing the young men and women when they have trained trying to be honest and industrious as well as crowned with the highest honors of educations, May their words of kindness be sprinkled around their school like the evening dew that falleth at midnight hours. Now cousins, I will tell you how much cottonI picked the other week. On Monday I picked 400 pounds. Tuesday 400 pounds. Wednesday, 540 pounds. Thursday  pounds. Friday 400 pounds. Saturday,  pounds. Quitting at 5 o'clock Saturday evening, the total was 2604 pounds. Now, cousins, do not think I write this from egotism or anything of the kind, for we have boys and girls at Red Oak and elsewhere that can beat what I have done. I will ask a few questions: Was John Smith a good or a bad man? Please give your reason for your answer. Will someone give the retreat of George Washington in brief form without going to books for references? How high is Washington's monument? What reason did Guiteau give for killing President Garfield?
N. O. WRIGHT, Bell Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: I have never written to The News before. But I've been reading some of the cousins' letters, and they were so nice and I enjoyed them so much. I thought I'd join the cousins and have a jolly time, too. I'm a little girl, 17 years old, and if the cousins let me join their band, next time I'll write you a good letter. Cousin Levi says one of our little cousins said one girl was worth as much as half a dozen boys. It's true we girls are worth a great deal, and are useful for many things and in many ways, and to doubt the world would be lonesome and dull without us, but at the same time, if we think it over and look at all sides of the question, we will agree that boys are quite valuable, too. I have four sisters and three brothers and brothers are just as dear to me as my sisters. And remember, little cousins, we all have papas, or have had, and they once were boys, you know. I have a father, and he's kind and good to me, and that's why I take up for the boys. So all you little boy cousins must appear in the next issue with bright, happy faces and cheering songs, and don't let the girls dishearten you. It's nature for them to want to keep ahead. Now, Cousin Levi, I think you are too hard on old maids. You ought not to talk so hard about them, for there are lots and lots of good old maids, who are good, kind and true to all. Besides, I myself am liable to be an old maid, and if I am, I hope I'll be a good one and useful, and not one of the selfish kind you spoke of. I will try to answer one of the riddles asked by Cousin Hedwig Paula. It was: Two fathers and two sons went hunting and shot three rabbits, and when they divided them, each got one. They were grandfather, father and son, or, in other words, grandfather, son and grandson. People are busy in old Bell, picking cotton. Cotton isn't very good this year. We didn't have enough rain, but it had been raining yesterday and today, and it will make the range good again. Corn is real good here this year.
HEDWIG PAULA PFEFFER, Kenney, Austin Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and the dear cousins: It is Sunday and I am very lonely. Sister Elsie and I are the only ones at home. Brother and my two sisters have gone to a ball this morning and will return to-morrow. Papa went to a feast this afternoon and will come home to-night. Mamma and my two other sisters are walking about the pastures. I went to a show the other day and enjoyed it so much. It was a very big show, and there were some wild animals, of which the sea lion was the most curious one to me. Brother Max will return from Seguin, Oct. 9, and I will be glad to see him again. He has been away from home since June. Well, Mr. Big Hat, I will tell you a little about that flower I sent you last time. It wasn't a hollyhock, it was a "mallow." One of the cousins named Clara French, wrote to me after reading my letter in The News in regard to it. She asked for the seed, but as it does not bear seed, I will send her some cuttings. That is, if she will answer my letter. I wish I could be one of the cousins that are going to the Dallas Fair. Sister Tonie will go to the fair, but I don't know whether she will wear a blue star. Papa and mamma will go, too. Maud Foy, I wish you would send me your quilt patterns, both the double bow-knot and the cross-eyed baby. Mr. Big Hat, I wish you would tell the cousins every week whose penmanship was the best. But I guess if you did this time, my name would not be among them, for I don't like my penmanship to-day. But you must not think that I went hunting, too, as one of the cousins did. I will close by asking Ellen Schroeder and Felix Herring why they don't come again. I am 13 years old.
HATTIE SIMMONS, Chillicothe, Hardeman Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have been reading your letters for only two weeks, and think they are so nice and interesting that I have decided to write one. School beings Monday. I am so glad for we have had five months for vacation. I have spent most of my vacation reading. I like to live in the panhandle. I think it is the most healthful country I have ever lived in. We haven't much fruit nor many vegetables, but are blessed with good health and pleasant weather. Did any of the cousins ever see a prairie dog? They are something like the squirrel in appearance. They are caught with traps or by drowning them out. Of course they live in the ground. Ida Hill, Maggie Jenkinson and Florence Giddens, I enjoyed your letters so much, and hope you will come again. Some of my friends and myself organized a Junior Literary society during vacation. We enjoyed the meetings so much. We gave a public entertainment last night, as it was our last meeting before the beginning of school. As this is my first attempt to write to The News. I will close by asking of the cousins who have read "Lucille." Was Lucille ever married?
JOHNNIE STRUCKE, Burton, Austin Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have been reading all the cousins' letters and think they are quite interesting, so I have decided to try to write a missive to you, too. I know I can not get up a good letter, as I never have had the advantages of learning at school. I live out in the country where wild fruits grow in the woods in great variety, and sometimes you can see the girls and the boys roaming around in the woods as happy as an be, devouring all the fruit they desire. I think the girls are a little too hard on the boys by calling them sleepy heads. Remember, girls, in olden times if it had not been for the boys this country would not have been civilized. It is the boys that have developed the country and made it what it is to-day. Another thing. I think sometimes boys are very handy when waiting on the girls. Now, you must not think I am trying to raise a war with any one, for I am not, for I think girls are lovable and quite nice in their way. I will answer one of the cousin's questions: It was John Wilkes Booth that assassinated President Lincoln. I will close by asking a question: Who delivered the funeral ceremony of George Washington?
ADELE HENRYETTE PFEFFER, Kenney, Austin Co., Tex. -- Little Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have just come home from a little walk which I took with mamma and baby, and saw Sister Hedwig writing a letter to The News, so I thought to make my first attempt. I wanted Hedwig to write a joint letter, but she didn't like it, so I must come by myself. Maybe we will do so next time. Mr. Big Hat, I will send you a little picture with a boy and a girl on it; you may call the boy "Mr. Big Hat" and the girl "Miss Big Bonnet," but it doesn't make any difference. As this is my first letter, I will tell my studies. They are, fourth reader, arithmetic, language, third German translation, spelling, geography and penmanship. School will begin to-morrow, and I am glad of it. One of our dogs died a few weeks ago. He ran against a fence and broke his neck. He was a bird dog and would catch any chicken we wanted. He also would pick up the dead birds which brother shot, when hunting. I will close by asking a riddle: Big at the bottom, small at the top, inside it goes flippytyflop. I will be 12 years of age Dec. 6.
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