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Monday, January 19, 2009

Letter 13 ~ September 17, 1918

Minnie tells me she has the best order in her school of any in Riley County.

Addressed to Mr. Ward C. Griffing, 25th Company, 164th Depot Brigade, Camp Funston, Kansas
[Sherman, Kansas]
Tuesday evening, [September 17, 1918]

My Dear Ward:

Well for the first time since I’ve been up here, I don’t know what to write to you. I generally have a dozen things I want to say all at the same time.

It’s trying to rain here tonight and I bet it’s pouring over at Camp [Funston]. The clouds over that way look like it might be. I expect you’ll get a chance to go swimming. But it’s not a very pleasant time of year to do that, especially if you are not feeling well from vaccination.

I only have enough paper for two more days. Then if I write, it will have to be notebook paper or scratch paper. I’m going to send a letter everyday this week. I know if you aren’t feeling well and have to lay around, you will like to get a letter if you are anything like me. I remember last winter when I had the measles. I was so glad when I got a letter from you. But I can’t write the kind of letters you can. That was just one of the nicest things you were always doing that made me think so much of you. You always did the right things at the right time. Just when I was least expecting it, you would be doing something that would make me so happy.

School went just fine again today. I had to give a couple of my 7th grade boys a good shaking, but that’s nothing. I get sore enough to do almost anything once in awhile. I don’t abide strictly by the rules of the school because they are old enough to know. And I don’t care if I do say it (it most likely isn’t because of my teaching) I have the best order in my school. I just wish you could visit it. College Hill was a mean school compared to this. I better not brag [cause] they may get worse. I have a couple of boys that don’t have any sense at all, and never have their lessons. They cause me more worry than anything in my school.

If I had the chance now to snuggle up by your side and take your watch to “tick, tick” and then sneak the picture out in the back of your watch, you wouldn’t scold and make me give it back now would you? You don’t use that watch since you have your wrist watch.

Do you still have to climb up those hills and carry rocks down to make the road?

Your mother gave me your letters Saturday when I was over. I felt like I was getting the mitten. “Nit.” A good night kiss, dear. I wish I could give it to you. Your sweetheart, -- Minnie G. Frey


  1. Minnie is off to a good start, running a "tight ship" in her classroom. Her methods are effective and appropriate for the day, but they would probably land her in jail nowadays. She seems to be a natural born school teacher. How long did she stay in the teaching profession?

  2. You're right. She even admitted to bending the rules a little, probably in reference to her disciplinary methods. She was only about 20 years old at the time of these letters, not much older than some of her students. I believe she only taught school for two or three years.