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July 26, 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.

BURDAH WEEKS, Arlington, Tarrant Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here comes another 10-year-old girl who wants to join the cousins. My papa takes The News and likes it very much. My school was out the first week in June, but I wish it would begin again, because I like to go to school. I am in the fifth grade. Last term, we had about 132 pupils. We have a real nice college. My papa is a brickmason. We have been living at Arlington eight years. I have just begun to read The News lately. I hope Peggy will be at the pasture when this comes.

EDWIN McWILLIAMS, Crystal Falls, Stephens Co., Tex. -- Dear old department: I will come once more, if the readers will admit me. I have been reading a very interesting book, entitled "How to Get On in the World," drawn from the life of William Cobbett. Mr. Cobbett was a poor boy who made his living by following the plow, as many of the cousins are now, and when he became a man, he was a soldier and had no education. He had a very poor chance to get one, but he had good perseverance to get one with. You see, while the rest of the soldiers were sitting around the fire talking, he was studying a grammar, in which he took great interest. He finally became a great grammarian, the best known in England or France. He wrote a good grammar, one that has enabled thousands who have failed to make head or tail of other grammars to master the English language, and to speak and write it correctly. Sir Henry Bulwer Lytton speaks of it as "the only amusing grammar in the world." Hazlitt says it is "interesting as a story book," and Mr. Richard Grant White declares that he "knows it well and has read it with great admiration." When it first appeared in England, 10,000 copies were sold in the first month, and it has had a steady sale in that country ever since. In Germany, it has been considered worthy of an honor which has never, I believe, been conferred on any other English grammar; namely, it is printed in the original, with notes in the German language, for the use of German students. The language of the ordinary English grammar book is incomprehensible to boys and girls; its words are unfamiliar and unintelligible to them; in fact, the whole vocabulary of grammar is a dead language to them. Now, Cobbett's little work has the breath of life in it,. it is in living, every-day English. The very words of it are alive, running over with life. Let us take a look at the other side of the subject. All of you who have studied grammar know it is very hard to understand. It is made up with such large words and its rules are so hard to learn and to apply, that very few teachers even understand teaching it. You may look through a grammar and you will find nothing more than words, words, words, names, names, names, rules, rules, rules. Mr. Cobbett looked at the matter in another way. He introduces the subject in such a simple manner, that even to the newsboy or the plow boy, it is very easy of comprehension. "Where there is a will, there is a way," so Cobbett had the will and he very easily found a way. While others spent their time in idleness, Cobbett was making good use of his time and was preparing for the future, and he had success in his good work. Now, cousins, you who go to small schools and live in little houses, you should never get discouraged in your studies. I have heard scholars talking about going to a higher school, when they could not read well in the second reader. What could they do at a high school? They would not learn as much there as they could at a small school. If you will master all the common schools can teach you, and if you will put your time to some use, you can, too, like Mr. William Cobbett, obtain good knowledge of any subject without going to a high school, even a day. Mr. Cobbett did not go to even a small school to make of himself a good grammarian and also a useful man. You will find many a boy to-day, who has not done anything much, but go to school, and he knows but very little, after all. Why is this? The answer is that he went to school without a will, and you may be sure that there is no one who can learn without a will. But, there is many a boy and girl who goes to school without one, and the consequence will always be the same. Many a boy and girl of to-day gives up in despair, and says: "There is no chance of my ever being anything in this world; just look what a house I live in and what a school I have to go to." Any one who gets such foolishness in his head is greatly mistaken, for haven't many of our smartest men of to-day been reared in just such circumstances? They did not get discouraged and give up, but kept on with their studies. A fine house can not give you knowledge; you must have a will to acquire it. I think the cousins are a smart lot of youngsters, who wish to improve their minds by writing to the papers, and I think that is a very good way to improve the mind. I think the cousins should do their best to make this page interesting to the readers. It is true that little cousins can not interest the older people much, but to write often gives them good practice and they may some day be the best writers that ever write to the page. Mr. Big Hat, I like your suggestion very much concerning the Summer School. Please find inclosed 25 cents for the memorial stone, contributed by Mr. Bud Sover. I will answer some questions. One is, "Why is a bunch of keys like the hair of the head?" Because it has so many locks. Another is, "Look in my face and I am everybody; scratch my back and I am nobody." It is a looking-glass. I will ask a question: What is the most valuable thing to mankind? It is very hard to answer, but I want the cousins' opinion of it. They will find no such question answered even in their studies, but everybody has an opinion of it. Miss Lutie Sanders, I am so glad you have met with such good fortune, and think that you half brother is exceedingly kind to you. There is no doubt you deserve it every bit, after doing so much hard work in the corn fields of Texas.

LILLIAN LOVE, Charco, Goliad Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Pardon my presumptuousness, but the loneliness of this occasion oppresses me, and I must either read or write to dispel the gloom that surrounds me. I prefer to write, and as my correspondence is very limited, gently ring for admittance into your happy circle of youthful writers. While perusing the contents of some of the delightful epistles written for the exclusive benefit of the boys and girls of the grand old state of Texas, my mind wanders over some very evident talents for good literature. I notice that the boys seem more disposed to uphold and preserve the names and accomplishments of our great writers among men, and that the girls are inclined to reverse matters. Girls, why can't we also maintain some of the judicious acts of women? Many noble deeds and works have been accomplished by our sex, and why should we not preserve their memory by making mention of them from time to time in our writing as they are brought to our notice? Cousins, think about this most interesting subject, and in your future writings, let woman predominate. I would attempt to reveal the pre-eminence of some of our inspired sex, but as this is my first effort to entertain the thoughtful readers of this page, and for fear of boring you, I will not undertake to dwell on this subject until my next missive. Mr. John Shepard, I very readily found your age, and if any of the cousins are anxious to know mine, they may consider you three years my senior. Come again, you write a splendid letter, and rest assured that such compositions will greatly improve these columns. Lella Du Bose, I was indeed glad to see and read your entertaining letter. It made me recall quite a number of incidents of our school days at Bruceville. Mr. Big Hat, I think your plan of essay writing an excellent one, and though I am not competent to compete for a prize, may I offer my best wishes for the success of the contestants? I would like very much to correspond with some of the cousins through the summer months.

JEFF MILLER, Hamilton, Hamilton Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As the glorious rain is falling and nothing an be heard but the patter of rain, I will make you all a call. Though, I can not write as interesting as some of the cousins, I am going to try for an improvement on my last letter. Cousins, I am going to try for one of the prizes for the best poem. I think Mr. Big Hat very sensible to think of such ideas. I expect his sister, Miss Big Bonnet, did most of the brain work. Did any of the cousins celebrate the Fourth? People here did not at all. Bertha Reed, write again. You write real nice letters. Rudolph, you should come again. Miss Lily M. Walsh, please write to Mr. Big Hat, won't you? I will not worry you any longer this time.

SUSIE KARNES, Pearl, Coryell Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: It has been quite a while since I have written to the Cozy Corner. I am very fond of reading the letters from the cousins. I have two little pet pigs and one pet pony. I have a nice time riding evenings. Tell Miss Big Bonnet to come down and see me when peaches and watermelons get ripe. I live near Pearl, in Coryell county. I hope some of the cousins will write to me and let us get acquainted. Don't let Peggy get my letter.

ETNA VALENTINE HOBBS, Coleman City, Coleman Co., Tex. -- Little Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here I come again, with one of my tiresome letters. It has been raining nearly all day, but has quit now. Little Miss Big Bonnet, you should be here now to play in the mud with my little brother and sisters. I have four sisters and three brothers. My oldest sister is now attending the normal at Coleman. Henry C. Somerville, I do not indorse all of your essay, for I have never seen in any history where the soldiers abused their commanders so, or tried to throw them from command. Still, you may be right, for we did not study the same history, I suppose. I studied Thrall's. Little Miss Big Bonnet, you are surely pretty in your new dress. Don't you think so, cousins? I am just like one of the little cousins. I like little letters, too. Hurrah! Herbert T., did you get back again? I'm surely glad of it. If I were you, I would be glad that my name had been lengthened by "or" being added to it. I am sorry that you have to go rolling around over the floor now, for I think you have had enough rolling already. Our school has been out just exactly one month last Friday. I was very sorry, for I love to go to school very much. We had an examination the last night and had a picnic on the following Saturday. We all had a fine time. I said a speech entitled "The Dead Man's Journey." I came near having to tie a string around my neck to keep my heart from jumping out at my mouth. Ludie Saunders, you are right about singing, for I have never yet seen a Saunders girl that could not sing. And, as for plowing, I have done lots of it in planting cotton. My brother and I planted several acres of cotton, and he would ride awhile, and I would ride, and once in awhile, I would nod and nearly fall off the horse. I have told my age in my other letter, only I am one year older than I was then. Well, I had better quit, as I do not like such long letters. Beware, Peggy, this letter is fatal, sure!

W. J. OWENS, JR., Elysian Fields, Harrison Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have fought a good fight, but it has taken pretty long to conquer Gen. Green. The governor was a good commander and we privates (a younger brother and a brother of Ham) were the ones to do the fighting. The governor would sit in the shade and order us to charge till I was sick of charging, but since the battle is over and the smoke and dust has blown away, I am glad that the governor ordered so many charges, for if we had not went at it with a will, Gen. Green would soon have conquered us. Well, cousins, our school was out on the 26th of June and we had a grand barbecue and tableaux at night. All the candidates from Marshall were here and all made speeches except a few. The crowd was estimated as all the way from 1000 to 1500. Prof. Jordan, our teacher, deserves a whole lot of glory for the way he handled we fellows and girls. After the tableaux, dancing was commenced, and we danced till the "wee sma' hours." There was a platform erected, and it was left till last night, and we young fellows and girls met and had our last dance on the platform, as the ringleaders were going to tear it up to-day. Well, cousins, I do wish it would rain. We are needing rain badly, and I do hope we will have some soon, as it is clouding up. Cousins, do you like to hear the violin? I do. We have two darky fiddlers on our place, and they come every few nights and play for us. The governor said if he could just get a preacher, he would be all O. K. I will close, for methinks I hear old Balsam braying for this now, and if he does get it, I hope he may step on his ears and turn him a back-action somersault. As soon as I sell some game chickens, I am going to send you a great big piece of money for the Sam Houston monument.

JOHN MACK BUXTON, Midlothian, Ellis Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat, Peggy and cousins: As I have not written to The News for some time, I thought I would try again. Well, summer is here again. To-day is my birthday. It is the 30th day of June, and to-morrow is my papa's birthday. He will be 37 years of age, and I will be 12 years of age. Cousins, we all should read everything good we can and try to advance our talents and cultivate our minds. We should abhor idleness. Books regarded merely as a gratification are worth more than all the business of earth. We should study hard while we are young, especially spelling. There are more than 100,000 words in the English language, and we can not reasonably be expected to know the orthography of them all. But, do not understand from what I say, that I think we ought not to work and play. I believe that all little boys work more than they get credit for. Do not neglect the games proper to youth, but let us work while we work, study while we study and play while we play. There is much in the proverb: "Without pains, no gains." Cousins, how do you like to play croquet? I surely do. I attended a picnic last Saturday at Cedar Hill. I had a very nice time. The farmers are all needing rain here. It has not rained in about two months.

ROSIE HAAS, Weatherford, Parker Co., Tex. -- Miss Big Bonnet and cousins: I have written to your paper before and my letter was thrown into the waste basket. Peggy ate the first, and I felt like whipping him, but I will write again and see if his appetite calls for my little letter again. We are having vacation now. The next term, I will be in the fourth grade. I am crocheting my doll a bed-spread and pillow cases, with trimming to match. If Miss Big Bonnet would come to visit me, I would let her play with my dollies' furniture and cook on my little stove. I am 10 years old. I have two sisters and a brother, 2 1/2 years old. He is so cute. When he sees his papa reading, he says: "Papa, are you reading The Dallas News?" My papa was agent and sold the first Dallas News in Decatur, Tex., years ago, and has been reading it ever since. It is the best paper in Texas. I like to read the children's page, and am glad when Sunday comes. Now, Peggy, don't eat my letter this time. I would rather give you some ice-cold watermelon and peaches, which is more refreshing than cousins' letters.

ELLA DANNELLEY, Clarkson, Milam Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and my many unknown cousins: As I saw my other letter in print, I thought I would write again. I attended a concert at Rosebird [Rosebud?] last Friday night. There is to be a picnic given by the Woodmen of the World, July 1, and I expect to attend. Do any of the cousins like to dance? I used to dance, but do not now. Our school closed the last Friday in May with a concert. We have services three times a month and Sunday school every Sunday. Miss Big Bonnet, you looked so cute in your new bonnet and dress, that I almost wanted one like it. I know all of the cousins thought so, too. Would some of the cousins like to exchange songs with me? Will you allow me to ask a question? What is it that is older than its mothers? Enclosed you will find 10 cents for the Sam Houston fund.

E. EUGENIA SHAW, Mangum, Greer Co., Okla. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Will you admit a western girl in your Cozy Corner? If you will, I will step in this beautiful morning, and chat awhile. Miss Big Bonnet, I wish you were here to go plum hunting with me, this morning. We would have a nice time, that is, if you rode your brother's mule. I would like to correspond with some of the cousins. What has become of Pearl Shaw? Pearl, we must be some relation, as our name is Shaw. I would like to correspond with you. I will ask some questions: When was the first English school established in America, and how many pupils did it have? When is a boat like a heap of snow? What is the difference between a feather bed and a spendthrift?

BELLE AWTREY, Minerva, Milam Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I thought as I had never seen any letters from this part of the country, I would write. Papa takes The News and I like to read the cousins' letters. I think some of the cousins can write such interesting letters. We are having plenty of watermelons now, and I do enjoy eating them. I am 12 years old, and am keeping house for papa. My brother, papa and myself live alone. My mamma has been dead ten years. I am not going to school now, for my school is out. I am in the fifth grade, and have seven studies. I believe I like United States history best. Some of the cousins were speaking of Ludie Sanders. I wonder if she is a sister to Mr. Jim Sanders of Minerva. Some of the cousins seem to think Mr. Big Hat is very good looking. I hope he is not as good looking as Mr. Rodgers says he is. He says he is so good looking, that he has to whip his face every night before he can make it go to sleep. As this is my first attempt to write to The News, I guess I had better stop before I make too many mistakes. But, I have always heard that mistakes cain't make haystacks; but, I wouldn't care if it was so this time, for this reason: As hay is attractive to mules, my letter might escape Peggy's notice.

FISHER RAWLINS, Oak Cliff, Dallas Co., Tex. -- Dear Mrs. Peggie: I call you "Mrs.," because I know if you were a "Mr.," you would never have had the spunk to tell us little folks what you did about the way we have of saying, "I am a little child only 14 or 16 years old -- and have a cat and four or five sisters and brothers," etc. I thank you ever so much, and will try to write of something else. Mamma read to me about those ants that worked like soldiers, in the Sunday News. I am going to tell something more about them. The ants have soldiers, workers and the queens -- and the little ants wash their hands and face and keep real clean, too. When they want milk, they tap one of their cows (aphis) and she gives them a drop or two of some kind of sweet liquid. Mamma showed them to me. And, they have flower leaves for their pasture. Just think how nice that must be. Mamma gave Brother Phil all her collection of bugs and showed him how to mix a jar with ants in it, so he could see how they worked. He put it under her teaz-a-weaz-er (refrigerator) and they went up the air pipe and got in the mil, fruit and butter and everything in it. Mamma knows now, how it was with the parents of her school children when they used to say, "I never know when, nor from where, a bug is going to drop." Papa put a piece of screen over the pipe, but when they found it, they went after more ants and kept on until they got enough ants to push the screen up and pass in. Mamma laughed at papa and told him that when he was better acquainted with ants, he would know that they never gave up. I expect the uncles might have given up, if they were still like some of us little boys. The first railroad in America was built in 1836. It was three miles long, from the granite quarries of Quincy, Mass., to Neponset river. A blue gum tree in New South Wales is 482 feet high. Who can tell of one higher?

TISHIE POWELL, Denson Springs, Anderson Co., Tex. -- Good morning, Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here comes another cousin to join your interesting circle. Miss Big Bonnet, you certainly look pretty in your new dress. You had better take your brother's place, for you are better looking than he is. Mr. Big Hat, you know all girls are better looking than boys! I went to a picnic the 3d of July and had a nice time. It rained as we came back, but we all stopped at a house and didn't get wet. There was a dance that night, but I didn't go. I enjoy dancing very much. Cousin Minnie Stevens, come again. We only live fifteen miles apart. I like to read your letters. Ludie Sanders, your letters are interesting to any one. If I could write like you and Herbert Taylor do, I would write each week. I was glad to hear Herbert had returned home. I guess he will stay at home now. I hope he will, and write often. Herbert, if you like to go fishing, come down here. Mr. Big Hat, come down and I will give you and Peggy some peaches. I will send some money next time I write. My age is between 8 and 16 years.

ALTA KNIGHTON, Denson Springs, Anderson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: Here comes another little cousin to join your happy band. I am a farmer's daughter. I am mamma's baby. I have one little brother and no sister. Mr. Big Hat, I was sick and did not get to go to the picnic the 3d of July. Papa and brother went and brought me some candy and lemons, so I enjoyed it very well. I am going down to grandma's this week if I get well, and stay a week or two. Miss Big Bonnet, I wish you were here to go with me. Wouldn't we have a nice time eating watermelons? All the cousins are telling about their pets. I haven't any, except two little ducks and my doll. I don't have much time to play, as I am the only girl. I am not going to school, but will start in September. I study at home. I study fourth reader, arithmetic and spelling. Mr. Big Hat, papa is going to get me an organ when I am 12 years old. My love to all the cousins and Mr. Big Hat! I am 9 years old.

HENRY C. SOMERVILLE, Bagwell, Red River Co., Tex. Little Mr. Big Hat: Please accept my thanks for the nice book you sent me as premium in the contest, "The Mier Campaign." I had little hope of winning the prize, knowing the literary ability of the writers in your department. The old proverb sometimes comes true in this as in other respects, "A faint heart never won a fair lady." "The Story of Mexico," by Susan Hale, is a book I appreciate. I am now reading it and find the same to be delightful reading. "Time flies," "time and tide wait for no man," and I regret that I now find myself 19 years old and thus debarred from entering your Summer School, not from any sanguine expectations of winning, but rather to have the honor of being in a contest with the other writers of your department. I am a Red River county boy -- raised on a farm in the grand old state of Texas. I have a practical knowledge of labor and know how to hustle for a living. We have some amusements, for all labor would make Jack a dull boy. We have singing and spelling matches, also preaching and Sunday school.

MARY CARTWRIGHT, Terrell, Kaufman Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: I have written to you once before and I saw it in print and decided to write again. It has been raining here every day, nearly for one week. We will start for our western trip real soon. We had an awful hard rain here Sunday. I read The News and like to read the letters. Some of the letters are quite interesting. I went to Kaufman Sunday, and spent the day with my cousin. I had a very nice time. My sister has just finished the book, "Elsie Denmore." She likes it quite well, and I think I will read it. I am not very fond of reading, though I sometimes read when I have nothing else to do. As it is now vacation, I find quite a good deal to keep me busy, reading and writing letters. Tell Miss Big Bonnet that I will write to her real soon.

OTHO SHELTON HINES, Farmersville, Collin Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As it has been some months since I last called, I thought I would see if you would allow me to come again. I am always anxious to see Sunday's paper, as I am, on that day, permitted to read the many nice letters from the cousins. Say, Mr. Big Hat, don't you feel proud of the many bright letters that you are publishing week after week? I thought that when the warm weather came on, that the cousins would not have the energy to write such nice letters, but they keep right on, as if there wasn't any end to their fund of knowledge. Cousins, I hoped to have met some of you on the 1st instant, on the big excursion to Musgrove Springs. It was so hot, though, I did not enjoy the trip very much. I have a good time at home playing with Cecil and James Casey, our pastor's little boys, and then I have a nice pony about thirteen hands high, that I ride late in the evening when it is cool. Sometimes, I take my two sisters and brother in a surrey, and we go away off on the prairie and in the bottom and have a good time fishing and hunting. My grandmother has been visiting us this summer, but she returned home two weeks since, and oh, how I miss her! Cousins, you know it is nice to have a grandmother, but one is appreciate more when their good mother has been dead six years. Success to Mr. Big Hat and the cousins! I inclose 5 cents for the Sam Houston memorial.

SHELLA BRATTON, Honey Grove, Fannin Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have been reading the letters in the Cozy Corner, and I like them very much. I live in town and I like it well, but I would prefer the country if it had a nice school like we have here. I went to visit my grandmother's and grandfather's home. They live in the country. I hunted for hens' nests. I love to hear the birds sing, don't you? While I was out there, I went upon a mountain and I saw a grave where an Indian had been buried. Some of the cousins have pets. Well, I have a cat and a pig. Next time, I will try to do better, if Peggy don't eat this one, for it is my first attempt. My age is 12 years. I will put a cross after my letters, as it was written without help. Inclose 10 cents for the memorial fund, for I want my name on the list.

BERTHA RAYMOND, Moran, Shackelford Co., Tex. -- Little Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here comes a little 8-year-old girl to join your happy band. I have been reading the cousins' letters and think they are very nice. My papa has been taking The News for several years and likes it very much. I live half a mile from town. I go to school at Moran, but our school is out now. It is Sunday and it is raining. We need the rain very much. Our cotton is good. I hope Peggy won't be hungry, so this letter will be printed.

MARY WOMACK, McGregor, McLennan Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat, Miss Big Bonnet and dear Peggy: How are you all getting along? Well, Peggy, I read your letter and thought it very nice. It was just simply splendid for the first time. Write again to all of us cousins. You just wrote to one person before. We are perfectly satisfied with the explanation, which you gave, and won't say anything else about that, I don't guess. We ought not to, I know. We would be exceedingly glad to know your age, Peggy, but if your are not going to tell us, I suppose there is no use to saying anything more about it. Your picture is ugly, but you must be a very smart and good mule, if you don't throw Mr. Big Hat and his little sister. It rained a big rain here last night. We surely needed it, for we had not had any but a little shower in two months and four days. Is not that a long time? Mr. Big Hat, I hope that our many cousins from the different parts of these grand United States will do all they can to make your suggestion a complete success. I agree with you on saying that the cousins should not fulfill your request just for the prizes, but for the benefit of it. Many of our little cousins think that our page is merely for amusement. But, that is not all, it is beneficial, also, many who write say they don't like to go to school. I don't see how they can help but love it, but when they see they don't like it, these words should come into their mind at once, "We should all strive to get an education." Miss Big Bonnet, you looked just as sweet and cute as you could in your last picture; write again. Hush! I heard some one coming. Oh, now dear cousins, I can see who it is. 'Tis Peggy!

SALLIE CRITIC, Sulphur Springs, Hopkins Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: What made you buy that mule, Peggy? Don't you know that to use him for a waste basket to devour your little correspondents' letters that speaking of their ages, their pets, the objects of their love, you hinder the development of their loving natures, and thus mar the best of human products -- a great, loving human heart? Dolls and pets to the trundle bed trash serve the same purpose in awakening the springs of love in their little hearts that rain and sunshine serve to the acorn that gives the oak tree birth? I am glad to learn that his big ears, besides showing what kind of animal he is, were made useful as blotting pads to dry the ink splotched on his letter and hoof. "I am not going to tell you how old I am;" that sentence shows shrewdness, as very old mules are nearly valueless. "I am going to stop right here." Any one would have discovered that without his telling it. "I never had any brothers and sisters." In this sentence, he utters a physiological truth which satisfactorily accounts for his hatred of those that make pets of them. Should Peggy, in nosing about, discover my letter, there will doubtless be an awful bray, but dear Mr. Big Hat, don't let him sue his ears and hoofs to smother and murder me quite. I think your two letter writers, one of whom gives a sketch of a journey to the moon on a buzzard and the other of a voyage on the back of a turtle, should be more realistic. People nowadays are not as simple as the person, who having read "Gulliver's Travels" said he liked the book very much, but he thought there were "some things" in it hard to believe. I saw a letter last week from a dear little friend in Cooper. Come again, Mary, and tell us all about the railroad.

RUBE ADCOCK, China, Jefferson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: It has been a long time since I wrote to the department. Since then, I have changed my postoffice. I used to live at Amelia. Papa has bought a hog ranch, and I am staying with him. It is awfully lonesome here. Our nearest neighbor is a mile and a half from us. It is five miles to the postoffice. I walk it all the time. Mr. Big Hat, if I were you, I would sell Peggy and get me a bicycle. I know you would look nice on one. And then, it couldn't eat the cousins' letters! I think Peggy writes an interesting letter, and I hope he will write again soon. I went to a barbecue on the 4th of July and had a nice time. There was dancing and races and also a decorated bicycle parade, which was very nice. The Beaumont city band furnished the music. Cousin Hattie Friend, come again. I hope Mr. Big Hat will have a summer school. If he does, I am going to join. I think Herbert Taylor had better join a circus. Say, boys, the girls are getting 'way ahead of us. That won't do, will it? Do any of the cousins read novels? I do, and will exchange novels with any of the cousins. The Cozy Corner gets more exciting every week. I see we have a celebrated turtle rider now. I live six miles from Sour Lake. It is a celebrated watering place, and they have struck oil there, and it may make a city some day, that is, if they get a railroad. I am going to start to school soon and I am glad of it, too. Well, I've written enough, I guess. And, if this is printed, I will try again. I hope Peggy will be asleep when this gets there. I am 14 years old. Success to Mr. Big Hat and The News.

LUELLA WORD, Sonora, Sutton Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and unknown cousins: I am 13 years old and want to join your happy band, hoping you will receive me as a cousin. Come again, John Shepard. I have just been reading your interesting letter. Mamma said you must be the John Shepard she knew near Greenville. If you are the same John, then your sister and mamma used to go to school together and were great chums. Mr. Big Hat, you had better trade your big hat off for a little dude hat. Hattie Friend, I agree with you that we are never too old or too young to learn. Write again. Dollie Nelson, we don't write just for our names to be printed. We write our simple, sorry letters for Mr. Big Hat to feed Peggy on, so he can find room to print "you-all's" interesting letters. Yes, Buena Luckie, I have seen a prairie fire. Come again, Buena. Boys, I love to read your letters. I wish more of you would write and make the girls think you were going to beat us. My papa takes The News and likes it very well. I like the "Little Men and Women" page better than any other part of the paper, although I read all the news. Miss Big Bonnet, write often and next time, take your bonnet in your hand, so we can see your face good.

ADRIENNE S. GROUSKY, Colorado, Mitchell Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat, Miss Big Bonnet and cousins: I was so glad to find my name in print. It encouraged me to write again. Yesterday, an old friend of mine took a little girl and my sister and myself on a little fishing excursion. We went eight miles from town to a place named Champion. We caught forty-seven perch and catfish. We met a Mexican and all that we had left from dinner, we gave to him. He could not speak English, so I was glad I had learned how to speak Mexican. I was taught when I was on the ranch. He had a large herd of sheep. When I first saw them, I thought they were papa's. Papa is one of the largest sheepmen in western Texas. Papa raised 5000 lambs this year and we had the cutest little one you ever saw, only it died. We stayed ten days on the ranch. On the fourth, we celebrated it in great shape. We had a large barbecue. Every boy and girl had a red, white and blue flag and a horn. We have a water spaniel dog. My sister is home now from school, and I am so glad. We are going on a picnic soon, and we are going to the ranch again. We have a horse and surrey and we go driving all the time. I guess my sister, Estelle Grousky, will write soon.

USTO BEE HAZBIN, Dallas, Dallas Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Is there enough room in Peggy's stomach for one more letter? If so, here is a nice specimen to eat. Cousins, I have read your letters for a long time, but I never could get up enough resolution to write before. I have lived in the suburbs of Dallas for twelve years. I know some of the girls will think I'm "awfully horrible" when I say that I despise cats and have no pets whatever. Have any of you ever lain in bed almost ready to "take the first train to slumberland," when you are rudely awakened by a "Meow! Me-e-ow-ow! Sp-i-i-ts-meow!" which was kept up for about two hours? Well, our cats go on like that almost every night.. I have often wished for a good dog, but never owned one. I go to the Dallas high school and am in the ninth grade. Cousins, please don't answer questions unless you are sure you know. I have seen several bad mistakes made in this way. I will ask some questions: Who wrote the declaration of independence (United States) and who was its first signer? Who invented the cotton gin? The sewing machine? Multiply 12 by 10, divide by 2, subtract 8, divide by 4, add 12x12 to the quotient, extract the square root of this and you have my age. Will some cousin please tell me? I have forgotten it.


- July 26, 1896, The Dallas Morning News, p. 14, col. 3-7.
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