September 9, 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.
IDA PFEFFER, Kenney, Austin Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As I have nothing else to do and it is a pleasant Sunday morning, I thought I would again seat myself to have a little chat with you all. The wind is blowing very strong, and we had a little shower of rain to-day. Carrie Williams, you guessed everybody had enough rain. We have not. We had enough in May, but since that time it has been very dry. The little rain that we had to-day did not do much good. Zilla Crain, do those cacti of which you have spoken bear seed? If they do, would you not like to exchange some for flower seed? I would like to exchange. Mr. Big Hat, you ought to come up here and eat fruit with us. We have enough, mostly peaches and grapes. I think you would have a nice time playing with my brothers and helping them saddle their pet colts. A little kitten keeps jumping on my desk where I am writing, and waits to play with my fingers while they are moving. Mr. Big Hat, on the 28th of July I passed The News office, but I did not see you. A crowd of men were sitting in front, and I guess one of them was you. I want to tell the cousins something of what I saw on my journey down to Galveston. It was nearly 4 o'clock in the morning when the excursion left. Kenney had its own car, and we all were in it when the first train came. The first went through from Brenham, and it had six cars from there. Our car was placed between the first and second car, then we went on. When we arrived at Bellville two more cars were placed before us. Up to that time we got all the smoke, but they then got it all. Sealy was the second station where we stopped. We could see the town very good, because the morning commenced to break. I can not tell all the names of the towns through which we passed. They did not call the names when we went down, because it was an excursion for Galveston, and on the way back I was sleeping sometimes, so I did not hear them. At Wallis, I acquainted myself with a little girl. She could not find a seat and was standing beside our seat. So Caroline, my partner, and I told her to have a seat with us. We three could sit very comfortably together. Oh, I surely can say that we had a fine ride on the great prairies. The cool morning breeze that came into the train was very pleasant. I saw many large heads of cattle, and soon we came to Orchard (I remember that station's name). The sun now commenced to rise. I saw many pear trees on my way, many loaded with fruit. Some said the train ought to stop so we could eat the pears. At Rosenberg we stopped a good while, because the train people eat their meals there. We passed Clear Lake park. It seemed to me that it must be a very nice place for picnics and fests. The lake was situated south of the park, and there were boats on it. We also passed through Richmond, but I can not remember anything of that place. It was too much to keep in one's head all I saw in the one day. I was very sorry that we could not stay longer. I guess some of the cousins think that I am very forgetful, but I am not. If all would see so much in one day they would understand. when we came to the Brazos bottom we could see nothing else than large trees and bushes and some farms. When we came near the river I did not know that it was there, and did not look where the train went along. I saw the banks of the river and thought that some people wanted to make large tanks. I could not see the water, only the red banks, but in a few moments we came over the bridge, and then I knew what it was. We stopped at Alvin, which, I think, is a nice little town, from all I could see in the few minutes that we were there. Arcadia, I think, was the last station through which we passed before reaching Galveston. It was not so very far then, and soon we were on the bay. It frightened me a little when we were on that long bridge and looked down to the water. The train surely went over it slow. I also saw the wagon bridge. I would rather go over that bridge with a wagon. When we were on the bay I looked out the window where I was sitting and saw several sail boats. Then I looked through a window on the other side and saw the city. I was glad then. We arrived at Galveston about 9 o'clock. From the depot we went over to the wharf and went on a steamer, on which we rode two and a half hours. We went far out to the jetties. When we were a little way from Galveston, I wished I could get off again on land, it made me feel so dizzy. I saw lighthouses and quarantine houses and large fish. The name of the steamer we were on was Bessie. When we came to Galveston again we went up to the city to a restaurant, where we refreshed ourselves. From there we took a street car and went down to the beach to look at the people bathing. I saw many nice buildings, but the prettiest, I think, was the Beach hotel, which looked best at night, when the pretty lights were burning. Some of our friends told us that they found such nice sea shells, so we tried to gather some, too, but it was late in the evening and the waves came so high that if we went out far at all they almost would dash into our shoes. I surely can say that I enjoyed the trip. Some here did not like it very much. At 10 o'clock at night, we left for home again. Ida Hill of Thorndale, Tex., why don't you write again, or have you not received my last letter?
EVANGEL BOWMAN, Mineola, Wood Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I think this is the day for me to write to you, as mamma does not need me to do anything. I wanted to help her peel apples, but she said "No," and I asked her to let me sew, and she said "No, ma'am!" And then I told her I was going to write to Mr. Big Hat, and she said if I wrote as crooked as I sewed my dress skirt yesterday Peggy would be sure to have to eat it. But when I am looking at mamma sew it does look like I can do as well, but after she let me sew up my dress, I found it different. I can stitch my doll clothes and make the dog caps and bonnets and trousers for the kittens, but mamma will not have my sewing on my own clothes, and I will be 9 years old on the 20th of next month, too! To-day is Saturday, and mamma is making "pizen things" for to-morrow, and it is a lot of trouble to keep going in the kitchen to ask her how to spell some of my wards [sic]. Lula and Levi are not at home, and I have no one to play with, and so I will have a conversation with the cousins. Oh, how I wish I could see all together, every one of the cousins who write to Mr. Big Hat. Wouldn't we be a crowd? Mr. Big Hat, tell little Miss Big Bonnet I would like very much to correspond with her. I hope she has gotten over her scare. Of course Bessie was referring to Peggy as not being gentle, for she knows little Miss Big Bonnet is gentle. Oh, my! what a long name. Tell me, Mr. Big Hat, what kin are all we cousins to your interesting little sister, Miss Big Bonnet? Of all the letters I read in The News, I think yours the most interesting, and for the last three weeks you have written such nice ones, giving advice to the cousins. I looked for my name in your letter, but never found it. Now, Mr. Big Hat, don't you think some of your children might get a look at you when we are in Dallas at the fair? If you will let me know what day you will be there in the front part of the exposition hall, and at what hour, and how I shall know you, I will try to be there, for Lula, Levi and myself all want to see you very much. Levi sent 5 cents for a back number of The News that had his letter in it. I want it for my scrap book. Did you get it? Well, cousins, I have not much to write, but as my sister and brother both have been trying to get me to write I will make an effort, so they can write, for you see, mamma won't let us all write at once, and this is my time and next it is Levi's. Maybe they will do better than I can. I saw in a letter from one of the little cousins that she would like to have some pigeons. If she will pay the express charges on them I will give them to her. Mamma says Lula and I can give as many away as we wish, but the express is real dear. Our school commences the first Monday in September and then I will meet all our dear school playmates again. Our town is building up fast. There has been lots of windmills put up here this summer, and now the boys have a craze for windmills and base ball. I think such things are contagious among boys.
EDWIN McWILLIAMS, Crystal Falls, Stephens Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: It has been some time since I have written your department. I have been reading your lessons in the Summer School. I think the subject you chose is real good. Mr. Big Hat, I think you are right about the boys and girls being equal, for I have experimented on that. Ma tried to make a chicken coup and I tried to sew on a button and we were both glad to make the exchange. There is a man here taking coal out of the bed of the Clear Fork of the Brazos river, five feet in the water. He gets about one ton a day. He is furnishing the courthouse with coal. Cousins, I think it is very wrong to kill a bird. I have had boys tell me that birds did harm. I would ask them, "What harm did they do," and they would reply, "Well, they eat up wheat." Then I would answer, "Do you not eat wheat in bread? I think the most innocent bird is the dove. Cousins, let us try to make our page interesting. I think Mr. Big Hat's department is the most interesting of any that I have seen yet, so let us try to keep it so. Mr. Big Hat, thank you for printing my other letter.
NELL FALLON, Flemingsburg, Fleming Co., Ky., -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Well, here I am again, the same old "drone," that I was last summer. I suppose Mr. Big Hat is saying: "There comes that irksome Nell again," but really cousins, I can not resist the temptation of writing again, when I see so many bright and chatty letters every week. Laurence Neff, let me congratulate you on becoming an "editor" so young in life. I am but one little year your junior, and am but a mere school girl. Write us a letter often, Laurence, for they are appreciated. Thomas O. Stewart, where are you? You have almost become a thing of the past. L. C. Fountain, you write an excellent letter. You are one of the many cousins that I am proud of. Nell Morris, you write an interesting letter, so jolly and cute. Won't you come again? Baxton F. Rodgers, what are you so busy about, that you can not visit the Cozy Corner? Lula Roxy Bowman, your letter was good. I think you and Mr. Neff would make good correspondents. Mr. Big Hat, where is that story you promised to tell us about Oklahoma's smartness? So Peg thought my letter was good, did he? Well, I can not help but think that it was more than the little editor thought! Mr. Bigity, don't you think it would be interesting for the cousins to tell the height of their ambition? Mine is to "figure in the literary fields." I will be 14 years old the 16th day of December.
LIDA MAY WEBSTER, Jefferson, Marion Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: I have been reading the cousins' letters and I am very much interested in them. I am very sorry I haven't been reading them all the time. There is a little girl in the neighborhood and she comes over every day and we play dolls. I have two dolls. One of my dolls is going to get married next month and I am going to send out some invitations. I have two cats and brother has a pet coon that is very playful. This is my first attempt and I hope to see it in print.
EDWIN McWILLIAMS, Crystal Falls, Stephens Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here comes another boy to join your "Cozy Corner." I am a farmer's boy. I like farming very much and I have no choice in my work. I like all kind of work that is to be done on a farm. My father takes The News and likes it very much. Mr. Big Hat, I would like to join your Summer School if you will let me. I am afraid when you see this bad writing and spelling you will be glad enough to be rid of this without having me to write another one for you to print.
ISADORE MILLER, Waxahachie, Ellis Co., Tex., -- Mr. Big Hat: I thought that I would join your happy band of boys and girls. I am a little boy 11 years old. I will go to school again son, for school will start the 23d of next month. I will study arithmetic, geography, science, physiology, language, reading and spelling. I enjoy reading the cousins' letters very much, and if you will enroll my name I will be a member of your Summer School. I will ask a few questions: Where is the largest match factory in the world? Who is England's greatest man? What was the most remarkable battle ever fought in the history of the world?
BIRDIE RHYNE, Avinger, Cass Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: Will you allow a little Texas girl to write to your paper? Cousins, I think Mr. Big Hat is kind to let the little men and women write to the "Cozy Corner," and I think we ought to appreciate it. My father takes The News and I am always glad when Friday comes so that I can read the cousins' letters. I think some of them are so nice. Fernandy Pfeffer, come again; your letters are nice. Our school was out in April. We had an entertainment and had a nice time. My studies are arithmetic, grammar, Texas history, spelling, United States history, geography and dictionary. Boys, what is the matter with you? You are waiting for the girls to do all the writing. You ought to enjoy writing to The News. We had a splendid meeting at Avinger last (fourth) Sunday. I guess you all have had plenty of hot weather this summer. We have had lots of it. We are needing rain now awfully bad. This is my first letter to The News.
BEATRICE HENSLEY, Longview, Gregg Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: My brother takes The News and I always read the cousins' letters first. This is my first attempt to write to the paper and hope to see it in print. My brothers write to The News. I will start to school next week and hope I will be promoted to the sixth grade. I was in the fifth grade last year. I am 10 years old. I have three brothers, two older than I and one smaller. We have been living in Longview two years. We came here from Callahan county. I like it here better than I do out there because the wind blows so hard. My papa is a sawmill man. I can play on the piano, but I haven't been taking music lessons for a good while. I have two mighty pretty dolls off the christmas tree. I bought myself one. My aunt came and spent christmas with us.
HUBERT GARRETT, Scurry, Kaufman Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: Here I come again to join the happy band of cousins. I took a trip to Fannin county a few days ago, one Monday morning. We loaded up our wagon and went as far as Terrell and stayed all night with my cousin. We did not get started from there until nearly 12 o'clock the next day, and camped at Roberts at night. We went through the rich black land. We stayed three or four days with Fannin relatives and then started down to Hopkins county to see some relatives there, and stayed with them three or four days also. When we got home The News was almost the first thing I thought about. I think that I have been benefited by studying the lessons in your paper. Mr. Big Hat, can the cousins send the answers to the helps now, or will we have to wait till near the close of the Summer School? Mr. Big Hat, which is the oldest, you or your sister? Cousins, don't it look like Mr. Big Hat ought to have her picture by the side of him? I don't think she is too old to go to school. Mr. Big Hat, I guess I will come to the Dallas Fair. If I do I will be sure to talk with you. I am going to try to see the cousins who are there with their blue stars on. Herbert Taylor, you and Thomas O. Stewart should write again. Bessie Bee, you and Fernandy H. Pfeffer come again, too. I enjoyed your letters very much. I am a farmer boy, 12 years of age.
OSCAR LEE, Aaron, ? Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here I come to chat with you all. I live thirty miles from the railroad and the mail is carried by mail carriers in hacks. We don't get our mail regularly. Cousins, did you ever see broom corn? I have been at work in fifty acres of broom corn. We got nearly half done this week. Papa has his wind mill nearly in running shape to grind corn and other stuff. Mr. Big Hat, I see in the "Cozy Corner" that you ask the question: How long does a dog live? I think a dog lives to an old animal. They have been known to live to about 20 years old. Schools haven't started here yet. If Mr. Big Hat can ride a pitching horse as good as represented in the picture he is a good rider. If he was like the cowboys up here he would turn loose of the saddle and ride him bareback.
RECTAR SMITH, Rusk, Henderson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I would like to write you a few lines to tell you all that I am still living. I live three miles from Rusk, which is a very dull place. I live two miles from the state penitentiary, a place for bad men. The soil is sandy and mountainous. We have had lots of watermelons this year. Our school closed Friday. I like to go to school very much. Mr. Big Hat, you ought to come down here and eat peaches and grapes and hunt squirrels and opossums and birds. A large college has just been built at Rusk. I will be 15 years old Dec. 24. I am so large that I can go out in the watermelon patch and keep the crows off. We have two dogs, Bob and Stump. They tree squirrels. Bob got his leg broke the other day. I may go to Jacksonville, Tex., soon. I have a colt 2 years old. I would like to correspond with some of the cousins of my age.
EMMETT O'REILLY, Boyce, Ellis Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: As you were so kind as to print my first letter, I thought I would write again. I am just back from a visit to Lamar, which I enjoyed so much. You ought to have been with us. We went through in a wagon. We had to go to Dallas to cross the river. Cousins, did any of you ever cross the river on the bridge? It scared me, it was so long and the water was so high. I saw some fine land on my trip, but crops looked very sorry. We had some nice fruit and that was a treat, for we haven't any in this country. Well, Mr. Big Hat come to see me, and I will let you ride my pony. I rode him to church Sunday and he didn't pitch any. I know you would like to ride him, as he is a good traveler. Well, cousins, I am going to commence to pick cotton next week. How many of you have to work on the farm? I want some of the cousins to tell me the name of the oldest city in the world.
ROONS DAWDY, Hutchins, Dallas Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have written one letter to the cousins' column, but did not see it in print. I am a farmer's boy, and my age is 11 years. I have gone to school five sessions. I have been living on a good black land farm all my life. I live two and one-half miles southeast of the beautiful little town of Hutchins. Cotton and corn are good. Cotton picking has begun.
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