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Index to Submitters of The Cozy Corner Letters
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September 6, 1896


TO CORRESPONDENTS -- When writing a letter to this department, first give your full name, postoffice and state. Use pen and ink, on smooth paper, not larger than note size. Write only on one side of the paper and do now sew, paste or pin the sheets together. These rules must be observed to insure publication.

USTO BEE HAZBIN, Dallas, Dallas Co., Tex. --
Mr. Big Hat and cousins (or Peggy), good day!
    I hope it's not as hot at your homes, as it is out my way.
   While this drought with its winds, so hot and so blist'ry.
    Makes a rain-shower seem ancient, mythical history;
    And while the mercury climbs to 106,
    We all may expect, though, to hear sundry "kicks."
    Well, the drought has not the "corner" set,
    For the letters aren't dry, but interesting, as yet.
    Miss Lauretta Faust, such letters as yours
    The cousins enjoy, as the French say, toujours.
    Mr. Lantie V. Blum, the flower I choose
    Isn't as pretty as some, but I hope it won't lose.
    It is of colors which are very light.
    And, like the cousins' letters, its aspect is bright.
    It grows in nearly all parts of the state,
    Is constant in blooming and for rain, doesn't wait.
    Perhaps you may smile at my choice for power.
    But I solicit your votes for the yellow sunflower.
    Cousins, to Mr. Big Hat, I submitted an essay,
    But my road to the prize has a big ? in the way.
    I am 12 years old, and can not yet swim,
    So, I'll try to follow instructions and be in trim.
    Well, cousins, excuse my boring you so long.
    But the department mosquito must sing his song (?).
    However, I've finished, buzzing away,
    So, again, Mr. Big Hat and cousins, good day!

PEARL YARBROUGH, Tehuacana, Limestone Co., Tex. -- Good morning, Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Will you once more allow me the privilege of writing to your department? I did not see my last letter in print, for we didn't get that paper. Neiliah Purette [Neliah Pruitt], I was up at Waxahachie some weeks ago. How far do you live from town? My grandmother lives about two and a half miles from town. While I was there, I went up 120 feet in the courthouse. It was nice, indeed. I could see Ennis, fifteen miles distant. I brought some of the rocks home with me that came from Llano, Pecos and Burnett. The courthouse cost $16,000. The Methodists have a fine church house; it cost $10,000. On our way home, we stopped and ate dinner, and it was at the nicest place you ever saw. It was at the edge of a large tank that looked almost like a river. We were going to ride all over it, but we could not find the owner. The train ran right across the dam. This tank was at Frost. I guess some of you cousins have been there. We came fifty-five miles that day, and reached home that night about 9 o'clock. I was glad, indeed, to reach home, for I was tired and sleepy. Della Stone, I for one, as well as yourself, love to play croquet. My sister and I played the other day for the first time since my finger has been sore. I beat my sister two games, if I did have a bone felon. I have had a bone felon for ten weeks. I pulled the bone out the other night. But, I'm not the only one that has suffered from one. Mrs. Bullard, of Waxahachie had one that was lanced nineteen times and was nine months getting well. I tell them all that my finger is nothing compared with hers. The Baptists have just closed a meeting with sixty conversions. Miss Big Bonnet, I think you ran a right narrow escape from being drowned. I nearly got drowned once, and I have been afraid of water every since. I guess you think you can't thank that boy enough for getting you out. So, your dolls did not get to see Europe! Poor dolls! You will never see them any more; they have gone to that beautiful shore; but, I guess your friend got to Europe all right. We girls ought to learn how to swim, and then we could depend upon ourselves. I can swim like a rock and dive like a feather. I expect that is the way with a good many of you. J. B. Robinson, I will answer your question: What fish will you find in the bird cage? Cuttle fish. Annie Fern Nichols, I will answer your conundrums. It is a bag-pudding. Cousins, if Peggy don't get this letter, I will try to do better when my finger gets well. I will send Peggy some roses to eat, so he won't be hungry for letters. If roses are too good for him, I think he may starve.

ALLEN BERRYMAN, Brookeland, Sabine Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As it has been a long time since I wrote to the Cozy Corner, I thought I would write again. I haven't anything very interesting to write. We are having some very dry weather here. Crops are a failure on account of the dry weather. Well, cousins, I had a very exciting time this morning. My sister went out to a hen nest this morning and there was a big chicken snake in the nest. I got me a stick and soon laid him out. I wish you cousins were all here to-day. We would have a picnic. What has become of Herbert Taylor and lots of the cousins that used to write such good letters? Well, Miss Big Bonnet, I wish you would write again. I think you look very sweet in your new dress.

ROBERT SCOTT, Lumber, Marion Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: May I get acquainted with some or all of you? I have been a silent observer of the happy little cozy corner for the past eight months. My dear friend and companion takes The News all this year and have enjoyed the little corner most of all, regardless of our non-interference. However, we hope to be better acquainted in the near future. I am very sorry I cannot tell some nice fairy tales and make all the cousins laugh, but for once, they must be content with the questions I will ask. What makes the ocean angry? What kind of employment is called light employment? If the cousins will let me off at this, I'll be sure to do better when I am acquainted. There, there comes that old mule. I may never get acquainted after all. So, I'll just throw a kiss at Little Miss Big Bonnet and say good-bye. My age is 15 years.

DAISY FIELD, La Porte, Harris Co., Tex. Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I hesitate to put my taxed energies within reach of the power of Peggy so soon again, but is he looks as benevolently on my faults this time, as he did the last, I will vote him a pretty good mule. Mr. Big Hat, the printers made a monstrous mistake in the publication of that example to my former letter. I would rather people would not think I am 8544 years old when I am not. Cousins, if age should be treated with veneration, you should all fall prostrate to the ground whenever I approach. Mr. Big Hat, your printers made me just 8530 years older than I am. As you are voting for a department flower, I will tell you what my favorite it. It is the modest little pansy with its sweet smiling face. Which color I like best, I hardly know; they are all so pretty. Lauretta Faust, you should never complain of your letters being dull or uninteresting. I enjoyed your last one very much. Joe Farmer, I don't see how you could compose such a good letter, when your brain was nothing but dishwater. Aimee Fern Nichols, I think the answer to your conundrum is a plum pudding, I will ask one: Why is Athens like the wick of a candle? Well, I have taxed my energies to their utmost, so good-by.

LAFAYETTE STEWART, Weestache, Goliad Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here this 75-year-old cousin comes again. I was so old, and used paper so old, the other time, that Mr. Peggy thought he would not attempt to destroy it, so, I have a fine chance to come often. It has been a good while since I last wrote. The reason is, I have been off on a fishing expedition, down on the bay. I stayed over a week. I certainly had a fine time boat riding and racing on the bay. Two of us were out in a little boat one morning, about a mile from shore, and my partner got frightened at a shark that jumped up by the boat, and he jumped on the other side of the boat and it turned over. There we were, out in the bay with all the monsters to battle for our rights and find the boat again! My head went in the first thing, and you may know I went pretty deep before I could start back up to the top of the water. My oars went with me, one in each hand. I lost one down in the water, and grabbed for it. I caught the fin of a wharper, and thought I had the end of my oar. He commenced moving along, and I thought I was going straight up to the top. It just seemed that the waves were moving me down stream at the same time I was rising to the surface. But, judge my surprise when I got to the top, to find I was in the other side of the bay! I then looked around and saw that great big wharper by me. I turned my other oar loose and haven't seen either of them since. Our department is getting better all the time; all the cousins are writing more and more interesting letters. Boys, the girls are about to get ahead of us writing. That will never do. What is the matter with most of the older cousins? I see they don't come as often as they might. Every youth of this dear corner ought to feel proud of it. Why not make use of it now, for we know that time is flying apace. If we could stop one moment and look ahead over the road of life we are to travel, we would be more contented with things that we have to do now. Just think. Men glory in raising great and magnificent structures, and find a secret pleasure to see sets of their own planting grow up and flourish. But, it is a greater and more glorious work to build up a man; to see a youth of one's own planting from the small beginning and advantages we have given him, grow up into a considerable fortune, to take root in the world, and to shoot up to such height and spread his branches so wide that we who first planted him, may ourselves, find comfort and shelter under his shadow. Much of our early gladness vanishes utterly from our memory; we can never recall the joy with which we laid our heads on our mother's bosom, or rode our father's back in childhood. Doubtless, that joy is wrought up into our nature as the sunlight of long passed mornings is wrought up into the soft mellowness of the apricot. The time will soon come -- if it is not here already -- when you must part with those who have with you surrounded, the same paternal board, who mingled with you in the gay-hearted joys of childhood, and the opening promise of youth. New cares will attend you in new situations, and the relations you form, or the business you pursue may call you far from the "play-place" of your early days. In the unseen future, your brothers and sisters may be sundered from you, your lives may be spent apart, and in death, you may be divided. Of you, it may be said:

          "They grew in beauty, side by side,
              They filled one house with glee;
          Their graves are several, far and wide,
              By mount and stream and sea."

    I would like to exchange songs with some of the cousins and to correspond with a few.

HIRAM BROWN, Thornton, Limestone Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat, Miss Big Bonnet and cousins (Peggy, too): Good morning to all. I thought I would step in and chat with you all this beautiful morning, as everything is so calm and peaceful. Everything is quiet, but one little boy I heard running the calves with a bell on (the calves have the bell on, I mean). How have all the cousins enjoyed the summer meetings and picnics? I have had quite an enjoyable time all the summer. I have been going to camp meetings about two months and they are not all over yet. A big Baptist meeting commenced last night and I guess it will run about two weeks. To-morrow is my birthday, the 17th of August. I will be 17, and I feel just as young as I did when I was 10. I wonder if I will get a present! I nearly always do, but my chances are slim this time, I think. Everything has been so dry that nobody can afford to give me anything. I went to church last night, cousins, and I am so sleepy this morning, I can hardly write. I will ask some questions: When is a river like a young lady's letter? What is that which every one requires, that which every one gives, that which every one asks, and that which very few take? What is it that we have, two every years, two every week, two every day? I would like to correspond with some of the cousins about my age (17).

MINNIE HEXT, Delhi, Beckham Co., Okla. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: What a good page the Cozy Corner is getting to be! I can't hardly wait until it come. I am a cowman's daughter. I don't know anything but ranch life. I can ride, milk, wash and iron. I wrote to Mr. Big Hat about four weeks ago and sent 10 cents for the Sam Houston stone. But, I never saw my letter in print. I don't feel discouraged, though, so, I shall write again. I think I directed it wrong. This is the way I directed it: Little Mr. Big Hat, Dallas, Tex., in care of the Dallas News. Was that right? Cousins, come up to Greer county and eat watermelons with me. Miss Big Bonnet, why don't you write oftener? We have had a big meeting going on two weeks. I saw the preacher sprinkle three or four on Sunday. I hope to be a Christian some day. I have nine sisters and four brothers. I hope Peggy won't get this. Love to all the cousins and success to the dear editor!

BEN SHROPSHIRE, Brownwood, Brown Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Having been a silent reader of this department for a long while, I, at last, decided to write and ask the permission of you all to join the happy band. I think the Cozy Corner is the nicest and most interesting band that I ever had the pleasure of reading. I was very much impressed by two of the letters (which I will not mention, though, all of them were very good.) If welcomed by all, and permitted to join, I will write again. I send best wishes to the cousins.

SADIE LONG, Davilla, Milam Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As my other letter was in print, I thought I would write again. One of my cousins is here now. He is going to stay about two months. Our cotton is open now. I expect we will have to have it hired out to pick. I will tell all my pets: I have a cat and a pig and a calf and a little boy brother. I will ask a question: What is it goes up hill, down hill, and never shows a track?

BERTHA EDWINA SAUFLEY, Decatur, Wise Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: My grandma has been visiting me. She went home just the other day. Herbert must be a bad boy, and I guess he gets lots of whippings. I wish he would write another letter soon. School doesn't commence here till September, and I will be glad when it begins. My papa goes to Galveston very often. One time, when he went, he brought some pretty shells, and when he came home, he gave them to me. I have a nice saddle pony and I am learning to ride. Please cast my vote for the rose geranium, which, I trust, will come out victorious.

MAUD SLAYDEN, Sherman, Grayson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and dear cousins: This beautiful Sabbath morning, I sit down to chat with the merry cousins awhile. Nellie Fallon, we would be glad to have your letters in the paper every week. They are so interesting. I think all of the letters are good. I always read all of them. Mr. Big Hat, tell Peggy to write again. I enjoyed reading his letter so much. Oh, cousins, to-day seems so lonely. My sister and my brother are visiting my oldest brother, and I miss them so much. What great enjoyment it would be to have some of the cousins spend the day with me. Come again, Ludie Sanders, all of the cousins seem to enjoy your letters. Ludie, have you got any kinfolks living close to the city of Sherman[?] There is some Sanders living close to me.

MENVILLE RUSSELL, Curtis, Eastland Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and all of the cousins: I have been a silent admirer of The News, but a very few months, but I think a great deal of it just the same. I don't know how many letters I have written to Mr. Big Hat, but never sent but one off, and that little flop-eared mule got it. I thank you ever so much, Peggy, for it was not fit to be seen in The News. I think it would have disgraced the paper. Don't you, Flop-ears? I was so glad to see a letter from you. Come again, Peggy. Ah! cousins, wasn't that a nice letter from that "tiresome Hardin girl," as she calls herself. And, the "Green Persimmon," she writes a splendid letter. Cousins, what has become of the "Buzzard Rider" (Herbert Taylor)? Do you suppose he is still in that terrible old sack? His tale sounded rather fishy for whales, didn't it? But, I like his letters. Gene Murdock, Wilhelmine Clark, Hattie Friend, Hattie Simmons, Ludie Sanders, Dale Nelson, Joe Dawson, Herbert and Marie Taylor, come again. And, Joe Farmer! Why, I like to have forgotten you. I have seen your letters in other papers besides The News. We take the "Young Author," and your pieces in that are just splendid. Joe, you used to read the Courier-Journal, didn't you? I have seen your letters in it. Cousins, don't you think it a great deal better for the 15-year-old girls to be reading good books or papers on Sunday, than to be off somewhere with boys no older than themselves[?] I think most of the cousins will agree with me, for all of our good writers write like they had good sense. What do you suppose has become of our 75-old cousin? I have forgotten his name. Well, whatever your name, come again. I will tell you of a little adventure I had the other day. I went to the orchard to get some peaches. The trees were so high, I could not reach the ripe fruit, so I had a long stick, trying to knock them off, when my two little brothers came up. The oldest one, Bennie, got up in the tip-top of the tree to throw me down some peaches. He had thrown down only a few when he saw a little green snake right by his head. I was standing right under him, my other brother, Barry, behind me, and the pile of nice peaches behind him. Bennie, in his haste, fell, and, of course, on top of me. He knocked me down, and I fell on Barry, knocking him down on top of the peaches. The poor peaches were under us and poor snakey, on top of the whole pile. We were all scared nearly to death, but no bones broken. Mr. Big Hat, I don't think the cousins ought to tell you their ages if you won't tell yours. I'm not going to tell my age, unless some of the cousins guess it. This thing is long enough, that if Peggy gets it, he can't eat any more letters, or it will kill him. If it was a good one, it would be too bad, but as long as it is just a pretension, it wouldn't make much difference if Peggy did get it. I will correspond with any of the cousins of my age who will write first.

JOHN S. FISHER, Munday, Knox Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: As there has been no one writing from this part of the world, I concluded I would represent this community in the Cozy Corner. This is the first time I have attempted to write, but I have been reading the cousins' letters for some time past. I'm like Cousins Hattie Friend and John Shepard. I can not write an interesting letter. I sit and think, and think, but when I take up my pen to write down my thoughts, it seems they scatter to the four winds, beyond all hopes of regaining them. As to a subject, cousins, I think "Great Men" is a good one. My ideal among great men is our first martyred president, Abraham Lincoln. Since Washington occupied the chief executive chair of the nation, there has been no president who has occupied so prominent a position before the country or the world, or, who has been a subject of such universal interest, as President Lincoln. Lincoln was born the 12th of February, 1809, in Hardin county, Kentucky, in a log-hut, where he remained until he was about 8 years old, when his father resolved to remove from Kentucky, on account of his dislike for slavery. He sold his farm for ten barrels of whisky, and $20 in cash. This liquor and his household goods, he loaded on a flatboat on the Ohio and started for Indiana, but on the way, his boat overturned and he lost all of the liquor. By this loss, he was poorer than ever, but settling in Spencer county, Indiana, he and Abraham began the great task of clearing a farm. When the son was about 10 years old, his mother died. During this time, Abraham was securing a month or so of schooling, and he would read all the books he could get his hands on. Among them were the Bible, Aesop's Fables, Bunyon's Pilgrim's Progress, and the life of Washington. In 1834, Mr. Lincoln became a candidate for the legislature and was elected. From that [time] on, he rose step by step, until he landed in the presidential chair, there to do the great work which has made him famous all over the world, that of emancipating all the slaves in the United States. In accordance with Lantie Blum's proposition, I cast my vote for the violet, as the Cozy Corner emblem. Joe Farmer, Ludie Sanders and all of the cousins, continue writing. I think your letters interesting. I hear Peggy braying for this letter, so, I will close.

RUBE ADCOCK, China, Jefferson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: As my other letter was printed, I will try again. It is a beautiful morning, and I am here by myself, so I will take my pen and entertain you a few seconds. There is a protracted meeting going on here now, but I have not attended it. China is a small railroad station, fifteen miles west of Beaumont, on the Southern Pacific railroad. There is a store, postoffice and a few dwelling houses here, and the nearest woods is two miles and a half distant. How would you like to live here? There is an old man down here who thinks he can strike oil, so he made him a machine and started a well and got down thirty-five feet, when it caved in. But, he didn't give up; he started another one and got down seventy-five feet, and some bad boys got two or three gallons of oil and poured it in his well. Then, he thought he had struck oil. That was mean in them, wasn't it? I want to exchange songs with some of the cousins. Henry Somerville, farmer boys always make great men; that is, if they try, and I think you will. I read a piece in the department entitled "Harry's Wishes." Now, I am pretty bad at wishing myself, and think that a good lesson. I like to read the Woman's Century, too. We have had bad luck since we have been here. We have lost two nice horses, and are about to lose the third one. I would like to correspond with some of the cousins who live near San Antonio, or have seen the Alamo. When I am a man, I am going to visit San Antonio, just to see the Alamo. If there is anything I don't like, it is a mule. Now, Peggy, don't you get mad at that, for you are not a mule; you are a donkey. Isn't much difference, though. Papa and I are "keeping batch," and I am the cook, and I have a time, too, I tell you. And, I don't mean a nice time, either. Peaches are ripe now, but as there are none on our place, that doesn't do me any good, does it? If I could write such letters as some of the cousins do, I would write oftener. Joe Farmer, have you rested long enough? Come again. I will start to school soon, and I won't have time to write then, so, I hope this will be printed. Success to all.

OLIA GRISHAM, Durango, Falls 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. My uncle takes The News, and I enjoy reading the cousins' letters. I think some of the cousins write real interesting letters. I went to a picnic on the 23rd of July and had a nice time. Lillian Love, you write interesting letters; also, several others. Miss Big Bonnet, you look cute, sitting in Mr. Big Hat's chair. I will ask a question: Which is the most ancient of the trees? My age is 12 years.

MINNIE BRACKETT, Tom Bean, Grayson Co., Tex. -- Little Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As I have just finished reading Miss Big Bonnet's and the cousins' letters, I thought I would try to fill up a little space. I live in a small town. My papa is a merchant. I am 11 years old. Miss Big Bonnet, your letters are real nice, but the next time you write, tell us how old Mr. Big Hat is. It is terribly dry down here, and we need rain very much. Peggy, there can no antidote be found for the poison this letter contains; so, beware, don't chew it up.

CLARA PERKINS, Greenville, Hunt Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have been reading your letters for some time, till I thought I would like to be one of the cousins. Edith Springer, I will answer your question. A man rode over a bridge and his little dog named "Yet" walked. Della Stone, I am like you. I like to play croquet very much. Come again, Ludie Sanders. Miss Big Bonnet, I am with you. I wouldn't run off any more. How many of you cousins can ride a bicycle? I can ride splendidly, and can nearly coast. I was 11 years old last April. I hope Peggy won't be hungry when this letter comes, for if it is in print, I will write again. I send my best wishes to all the cousins.

CARRIE WRIGHT, Caddo Mills, Hunt Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Good morning to you all! We are ever so glad to see the new cousins interested in this department. Cousins, it is very warm in this part of Texas, though any one can breathe a little, if one can afford an ice house and plenty of fans. I haven't attended school this summer. I have had a very nice vacation attending picnics, ice cream suppers, visiting, etc. The "literary" of this community gave a picnic the 11th of last July. The day had at last rolled around, and we were at the picnic ground for the day, or, at least, that was our idea, but disappointment was in our way. The members had just gotten their badges and marched, when a large cloud began to form in the southeast, and about 10 o'clock, it began to thunder and then rain. Oh, dear! I don't think I ever saw it rain much harder. The rain was bad enough, but the mud and rain, too, was too bad, about 2 o'clock, we started on our journey home. It seems very singular, but just as we drove up to our gate, it stopped raining. In about two weeks, the picnic was renewed and was pronounced a complete success. I imagine Ludie Sanders is fair complexion, light-brown hair, gray eyes and is stout; has a good deal of temper and also possesses patience. She likes to go to school. She does not have very much to do with her school mates, but likes to attend parties. As for Herbert Taylor, I scarcely know how to judge him, but I will send my opinion. I suppose he is fair, somewhat freckled, brown eyes, black hair, is slim and rather tall. He is very lively, is liked by his school mates, as he is fond of past-time. He is very good in his studies and likes reading matter. Lantie Blum, my choice for a department flower is the rose. Mr. Big Hat, they say you require the cousins' ages, but I don't think it right when you won't tell your own. I believe you to be 40 summers and twice as many winters.

OLA DUBOSE, Rising Sun, Jones Co., Tex. -- Good morning, Mr. Big Hat and cousins! I am greatly surprised to see so many cousins assembled in this Cozy Corner. Peggy got my other letter, so I will try to do better this time, but I think all the cousins fear Peggy. Lantie V. Blum, I read your letter with interest. I lived in Scurry, nearly two summers myself, near Bull creek, but we did not raise even a garden, it was so dry, and there were so many sand storms. We recently got a letter from an old friend there and she said they all had nice crops there this year. Perhaps you know her. Her name is Mrs. A. L. Sloan, and she is postmistress of Knapp and lives close to Durham. Well, Mr. Big Hat, I think you were right. Herbert Taylor did write a nice letter this time. Come again, Herbert; I am sure you are welcome to all. Cousins, don't you think the piece headed "Mamma's Dishwasher" was nice? Roxie Horton writes nice letters, doesn't she? Mr. Big Hat, you are about the only person I ever heard of that never grew a bit, and had to wear the same dress all the time. I feel real sorry for you. Please get Miss Big Bonnet to make you a new one. My papa has been taking The News for two years. Nellie Fallon, come again, please, and Luta Jones and Hattie Friend. Cousins, wasn't the piece headed "A Surprise Party Surprised" good?? I think all the cousins ought to take warning and not do as Daisy did -- make fun of those that can't dress as well as they do. I like poor folks and like those that are kind to them, too. I think we ought to all think as much of the poor as we do the rich. I would like to correspond with some of the cousins of my age. Mr. Big Hat, I guess you are getting tired of me, but I will try to dodge Peggy this time and bring my letter to a close by asking Miss Big Bonnet to write us another letter.

WESLEY HENDRYX, Winters, Runnels Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: It is once more I raise my hat to speak to you a few moments. I saw my other letter in print and it made me feel grateful to Peggy. But, I am sure had just finished his supper, but nevertheless, I will come again. I see so many interesting letters, it makes a 11-year-old boy feel kind of discouraged to write to such a grand old page as this. Mr. Big Hat, school is out up here. I am having a good time fishing. A big meeting begins to-night. I know we will have a good time to-morrow, for we will have dinner on the ground. Three sermons will be preached. Dear cousins, my letter isn't so interesting as a great many I see in this department, for I am only a plow-boy. I have followed the plow handles a great deal in the last two years. I live in Runnels county, about twenty miles north of Ballinger city. Crops are very good out here. Cotton is good, but corn, as a general thing, is not so good. Papa will make from twenty-five to thirty bushels to the acre. Our cotton is opening now. I love to pick cotton. How many of the cousins do? The most I ever picked in a day was 220 pounds. I love to see the boys get a move on themselves, as they have in the last News, for I think they have done wonders. Well, boys, you know we will have to quit that fishing and hunting, and get down to business, for we can't sleep half the time and keep up with the girls in industry and shrewdness. Of all the letters I have seen in this department, I like Edwin McWilliams' the best. If I only could compose such a letter as his, I would be thankful. I will answer one of Usto Bee Hazbin's questions: The cotton gin was invented by Whitney, in 1793. I will ask a question: When was gold discovered in California? I send 5 cents to the memorial fund.

ANGUS MANSEL, Hamilton, Hamilton Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: Here is another knocking at the door of your interesting young folks' department and asking admission. I also have, for a long time, been a "silent admirer" of your inviting Cozy Corner, but have never had occasion to write, and I trust that you will appreciate this effort enough to accept of it. I notice in the last issue of The News, some very meritorious communications from the younger cousins, and I am glad to see The News the recipient of the same. I am over 16 years old and would, doubtless, be classed among the "elder" cousins. I attended a literary society here the other evening and was asked to make a talk. I promptly arose, and, as I am not used to making extemporaneous speeches, I hurled a few old worm-eaten "chestnuts" at the audience, and in return, was greeted with something similar, only worse, after which, I retreated. The audience, then realizing the benefit of my remarks, encored me back, they insisted with tears in their eyes that I should return and finally dared me to, but without avail. I would like very much to enter your literary contest, but as the first I heard of it was in the issue of Sunday, Aug. 9, I am doubtful as to the advisability of my competing. Mr. Big Hat, don't you think that if cousins writing from cities would give their street and number, they would be more likely to obtain correspondents? I do.

JUDIE HEXT, Delhi, Beckham Co., Okla. -- Little Mr. Big Hat: Good morning to you all! I feel jolly this morning after a good night's sleep and a good rain, also. My papa started to Kansas City with 550 beef steers to ship. He drives them as far as Woodward, Ok. Mamma took us all out to the round-up and watched them cut out the steers. Then, we all got in the hack yesterday and saw them start and ate dinner at the chuck wagon. Then, we all came back home in the evening. We children all went to the watermelon patch and brought twelve melons to the house. So come up, cousins, one and all, and eat melons with me. Jesse Locke, write again. I think that was a good letter you wrote.

MAGGIE CHAMBERS, Goree, Knox Co., Tex. -- Miss Big Bonnet: I thought I would write to you. I will vote for a department flower. I will take the red amaranth. I think you write such nice letters. I have a cat, a dog and a horse. That is all my pets. I think Miss Big Bonnet looks pretty in the cap, don't you, cousins? If Peggy gets my letter, I will give her some oats.

LOUIS G. HARRIS, Giddings, Lee Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: I am a little boy not 7 years old yet. I have five brothers. We have two goats, a gig [pig?] and a wagon. I wrote this letter myself. I send 10 cents for the Houston memorial fund.

EDNA BOMER, Whitney, Hill Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: This is my first attempt to write to The News. I would not be writing now, but that my friend, Bessye Smith, persuaded me to. I have only been living in Whitney about two months. I lived in Comanche three years. Cousin Della Stone, I, for one, love to play croquet, and I also love to read very much. Cousin Ruth Jones, I would much rather have a sweet face all the time. I am 14 years of age, and I am in the ninth grade, and go to the Baptist Sunday school. Cousins, we know that Bessie Bee has gone off to school, but what has become of Hazel Gray? Herbert Taylor, your poem was excellent.

JENNIE ARNOLD, Cleburne, Johnson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: Enclosed find 10 cents for the Sam Houston monument. I consider this a most valuable undertaking, and it makes our hearts burn with patriotic fire at the mention of the name of the grand old hero, Gen. Sam Houston, who sprang to the assistance of tyrannized Texas and held back the hand of oppression. The name "Tejas"[?] was found on a map published in February, 1777, and assumed by students in aboriginal and Spanish etymology to be the same as the present word Texas, it having been discovered (according to authorities capable of giving true information), by early Spanish navigators. About 1828, Texas began to attract thousands of adventurers from all over the United States, which so excited the jealousy of the Mexican government, that war was declared. This war resulted in the victory of San Jacinto and secured Texas independence. Mexico, at that time, was convulsed with political commotions and harassed by most disastrous civil wars, and this state of affairs continued to exist from the time of the downfall of the Montezumas to the coronation of Maximilian the fist. The rapidly increasing power among the Texas colonies continued to so arouse the animosity of the Mexican authorities, that on April 6, 1836, an arbitrary law was passed, prohibiting immigration of American settlers into Texas in future. Military posts were established throughout the provinces, the civil authorities were trampled under foot, and the people were subjected to the most capricious tyranny of unrestrained military rule. About this time, the attention of the grand old hero, Gen. Sam Houston, was attracted to Texas and he began the task of moulding and saving a state. His ancestors came from "Scotland's noble sons," who fought by the side of John Knox for "God and liberty," Houston being born in Virginia, March 2, 1803. His birthday was, in 1836, the natal day of a grand and glorious republic. Fearing this theme may be tiresome to the little readers of the Cozy Corner, I will close by quoting one of Elizabeth Doten's poems from the July Arena. Though not in "blue and gold," I think we would have to look far before finding anything more beautiful, or so thoroughly applicable to a hero with heart and mind as broad and comprehensive as Houston's:

"Where have the world's great heroes gone,
The champions of the right,
Who, with their armor girded on,
Have passed beyond our sight?
Are they where palms immortal wave,
And laurels crown the brow?
Or, was the victory thine, O, grave?
Where are they? Answer thou.
The earth is green with martyr's graves
On hill and plain and shore,
And the great ocean's sounding waves
Sweep over thousands more.
For us, they drained life's bitter cup
And dared the battle strife;
Where are they, Death? Oh, render up
The secret of their life.

"Lo how the viewless air around
With quickening life is strewed,
And from the silences profound
Leaps forth the answering word:
'We live -- not in some distant sphere --
Life's mission to fulfill;
But, joined with faithful spirits here,
We love and labor still.
No laurel wreath, no waving palm,
No royal robes are ours,
But evermore, serene and calm,
We use life's noblest powers.
Toil on in hope and bravely bear
The burdens of your lot;
Great, earnest souls your labors share;
They will forsake you not.' "

     These poems of the "inner life" are intensely interesting to me, with their deep undercurrent of psychical research. They leave such a pleasing effect upon the soul, coupled with a sweetness that is not "akin to pain." It isn't often we find such poems, or one who has studied so extensively these mysterious communings of soul with soul:

"The truth that elevates the mind
And purifies the heart,
That teaches love of all mankind
And blunts affliction's dart.
"That dries the orphan's, widow's tear
And mitigates their loss --
That truth without a doubt or fear,
I take as gold from dross."

     I hope some of the other little folks will call for a description of Mr. Big Hat. Does he partake of the nature of a hero "strong and true?"

          "Poised head of an intelligent size
          And two straight, luminous hero eyes?"

          Can some one enlighten us?

LEE BEAUMONT, Waco, McLennan Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I am 9 years old. I raised six canary birds this year and they are all singers. I have a horse and saddle. I have flowers and enjoy them so much. This spring, I had a bed of sweet peas. Now, I have four o'clocks. Let me tell you a joke on them. They are called four o'clocks, but they do not open till 7. If any of the little cousins would like some vine seed, I will send them some. My mamma copied this, but I thought it by myself.

NETTIE McKAY, Longview, Gregg Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I am a little girl 12 years of age, and would like to join your happy circle of little men and women. Your circle grew so interesting, I couldn't stay away any longer. I am now going to school, but our school will be out in two weeks. We are under the control of a splendid young teacher. Cousins, how many of you study elocution? I do, and it is more interesting than any study I have. My cousin and I are writing at one time. I will close by asking a riddle:

          It was once alive and swinging,
          But now is dead and singing.

M. INEZ HALSEN, Beeville, Bee Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I would like to join your happy circle. I have been reading the letters for a long time and think they are ever so nice. I live on a large ranch. Our school is out now. I am 12 years old. Have four sisters and no brothers. Will some one please answer this question? Who was the first white girl born in America? If Peggy does not get this, I will write again. Inclosed find 15 cents for the Sam Houston memorial stone fund. Five cents are from myself and 5 cents apiece from two of my sisters. Their names are Sarah Soursa Holsey and Susan Hill Holsey.

MALCOLM BYNART, Big Springs, Howard Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: This is my first letter. I have just got through reading the letters, and I think they are very interesting. It has been about a month since we had any rain. It is awfully dry here. My papa is a lumber merchant. I am 10 years old and I am in the fifth grade. I have two sisters. My papa is a subscriber of The News. I go to Sunday-school, and I think it is nice to go there. We have a nice playhouse that we play in. I have a kitten. I attended a picnic on the 4th of July and had a good time.

RALF REYMAN, Alvin, Brazoria Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have been a silent reader of The News for quite a while, and may I be admitted into the Cozy Corner? I can swim, dive and float. I'd like to go in the water every day, but mamma will not let me. Sister wrote to the cousins not long ago. I have a black pony, and I ride him to town nearly every day after the mail. Our school commences in September. I was in the fifth grade last year. I had an alligator for about two weeks, but it got away. It was a small one. I'll close my letter, asking why all the policemen in Kansas City wear red suspenders?

BUSTER WHITWORTH, Watterson, Bastrop Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I thought I would write to you. There is a protracted meeting going on in the Watterson neighborhood. I went hunting yesterday and killed a squirrel and shot a rabbit, but failed to get it. We are needing rain very badly. I have been picking cotton. The most I have picked in a day this year has been 112 pounds. We have picked out two bales. I have but few pets. My old eight-ounce-duck cotton sack is about all. My age is 15. I would like to see Peggy and all the cousins.

JEANETTE MAY GANS, Giddings, Lee Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I am a little girl 7 years old. I have three sisters. I have a sweet little baby sister. I wrote this letter myself. I send 10 cents for the Houston memorial fund.


- September 6, 1896, The Dallas Morning News, p. 14, col. 3-7.
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