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Letter from Papa (James D. Dean) to Lump (Leslie C. Dean)

August 9, 1926

Dear Lump1 we are at Willie's2 got home about 6 yest eve I am all in packing up Sat eve and coming down here yest it was so hot, we packed one trunk and a big box and had to leave them at Vernon3. Pete4 is to move to Rayland5 tomorrow and is to put out things we left in the mans warehouse that he has been working for in Vernon for a few days till we can find out where to have them shipped to. Say Kelon6 just come in for a few minutes a go said Letcher7 stayed at his house last night and has gone over to Ft. Worth8 to sell a car of tomatoes. Told Kelon he would be back here to night or tomorrow night I don't know whether he will come or not. He is mad with me because I didn't do what he wanted me to do come here to Dallas9. If I can get to see him I will find out if he is going to help us any and help us get down there. I haven't heard any thing from Emmett10 yet. Pete was moving and was in debt to the man he was working for and had to pay him so he could get loose and didn't have the money to help us much. I let have the mattress and springs to get the money to come down here and he got a man to bring us in his car as far as Wichita Falls11 and that saved us $3.52 on our tickets. Willie wrote me they didn't have the money to send us to come on Mae sent me $5.00 to help us some she said to get down here. Larry Susie's12 kinfolks give us $2.50 before we left up there. We are anxious to get down there to our selves. Willie is expecting Clyde13 and his family Monette14 and Rot15 and Floyd16 may come and is expecting Leon17 at any time, and I will tell you if they all come in on Willie It is going to be hard on her and I want to get away. I don't know what Emmett means if he is down in his back he could let us know something if he can't write. Maud18 or Melba19 could and tell us. Maud wrote to Mae20 week before last Mae wrote me. Well I got your letter yesterday and I quit didn't know what to do or write. I don't see why I didn't your letter sat eve at Vernon I called for my mail just before 6 oclock and never got anything. So I told them to send my mail 1821 1/2 Gould St.21 Dallas, Tex. and they stamped your letter to be forwarded here Sat night at 9 oclock the 7th and I got it yesterday morn after we had go to Dallas when I ought to have got it Sat eve at Vernon. Lump I would like the best kind to go see Mae but I don't feel like I was able to take the trip it is so hot you all have no idea how weak and no account I am. I am nearly down in my back and have been ever since I got up from the flu this last time. I am all down and out from the trip down here. I thionk the money you all give me I had better spend it other ways that I think would do me more good. I would injoy the trip and the stay at Mae's if I felt well enough to take the trip. I will wait till tomorrow to send this off and see if Letcher come by to see me and what he has to say and see if I can hear from Emmett. I know you are very bussy the fair22 starts there tomorrow. I couldn't injoy it if I was there. Will finish this tomorrow and get it off to you.

Wednesday morning will finish my letter and send it to you. Letcher was to come back here so Kelon said last night or night before last but I haven't seen or heard a word from him. I didn't expect him to come after he found out Susie and I was here and I haven't heard from Emmett either I don't know what to do. If we had our things down at Troup23 that we left up at Vernon, do you recon get 2 rooms at Troup partly furnished for a while, and do you think Emmett and Letcher would help us some till we could get some cotton to pick or something to do. We can't afford to stay here on Willie and Sam24 and we can't go back to Pete's his wife25 treats me so bad and I sure do need Susie with me. She knows how wait on me when I need it, and how to prepair my meals better than anyone else and help me in ways and at times none of the girls could. I can have our stuff shiped by freight down there and it wouldn't cost so much. I could go on down there and get the rooms and have our stuff shiped, and Susie go on down after I get a place. Now what do you think about it, do you think we could get the rooms till we could do better I want Susie to stay with me, she wants to stay and I need her, and if I need anything done I don't mind calling on her when I wouldn't with any of the children26 for I know they have got to look after their own work. You think this over and write me at once and I will write Letcher. You be sure and write me so I will get it by next Saturday or Monday and do you think it best for me to go on down there to see about getting some rooms. I hate to bother you all so much but I have got to do something and the other boys won't write me at all it seems. So be sure and write me at once, and be plain and tell me what you think. Maby I will hear from Emmett some time this week. When I tryed to get up this morn my back was all to pieces and Susie had to rub it with mineral oil before I could get strait it still hurts but not so bad. I haven't felt well as usual since I got here. Worrying and changeing water have been all constipated and the miles have been pretty bad on me. Will quit and wait to hear from you.

Yours lovingly,


Identification of people and places mentioned in the letter

  1 - Lump: Leslie McCall DEAN, son of James D. Dean (Papa), brother of Emmett, Letcher, Mae and Willie.
  2 - Willie: Willie Daisy Dean PINGELTON, wife of Samuel Calvin Pingelton, sister of Emmett, Letcher, Lump, and Mae.
  3 - Vernon: a town in Wilbarger County, TX.
  4 - Pete: Jesse Laurel GOBIN, son of Susan Harriet Gobin DEAN.
  5 - Rayland: town in Foard County, Texas; residence of Pete GOBIN and family.
  6 - Kelon: James Kelon PINGELTON, son of Willie and Samuel.
  7 - Letcher: Letcher Bethune DEAN, son of James D. Dean (Papa), brother of Emmett, Lump, Mae and Willie.
  8 - Ft. Worth: a city in Tarrant County, TX.
  9 - Dallas: a city in Dallas County, TX.
10 - Emmett: Emmett Sydney DEAN, son of James D. Dean (Papa), brother of Lump, Letcher, Mae and Willie.
11 - Wichita Falls: a town in Wichita County, TX.
12 - Susie: Susan Harriet Gobin DEAN, second wife of James D. DEAN.
13 - Clyde: Clyde Alvis PINGELTON, son of Samuel Calvin PINGELTON.
14 - Monette: Emmett Monette PINGELTON, son of Samuel Calvin PINGELTON.
15 - Rot: unknown person.
16 - Floyd: Floyd Earl PINGELTON, son of Samuel Calvin PINGELTON.
17 - Leon: Leon Dean PINGELTON, son of Samuel Calvin PINGELTON.
18 - Maud: Maud Hillen DEAN, wife of Emmett Sydney DEAN.
19 - Melba: Melba Dean GREEN, daughter of Maud Hillen and Emmett Sydney DEAN.
20 - Mae: Nanna May DEAN, daughter of James D. DEAN (Papa), sister of Emmett, Letcher, Lump, and Willie.
21 - 1821 1/2 Gould Street: James D. DEAN's address in Dallas, Dallas County, TX.
22 - the fair: the State Fair of Texas, it happens every year in Dallas, Dallas County, TX.
23 - Troup: a town in Smith County, TX., home to several DEAN family members.
24 - Sam: Samuel Calvin PINGELTON, husband of Willie Daisy Dean PINGELTON.
25 - Pete's wife: Irene Dorcas Blume GOBIN.
26 - the children: unknown, possibly the children of James D. DEAN.
27 - Papa: James D. DEAN, father of Emmett, Lump, Letcher, Mae and Willie.

Transcription and identifications by Joe Defazio, Nov 2008.