Tennessee Mountain Stories

Picture Post Card

My grandmother recently shared with me a small group of pictures that came from her own grandmother.  My Great-great grandmother lived from 1886 until 1977 so these are pretty old pictures and quite a treasure.

As I looked through them I flipped each one over to see if any names or identity clues had been left.  Several of them were setup to be mailed as a post card.  One had actually been used to write a letter, although no address is included so it was clearly mailed in an envelope.  I found this little glimpse of turn-of-the-century communication to be so charming I just had to share it with you.

The note is written to Elbert and Euphemia Hixson from her sister Lizzie. I have inserted punctuation (neither period nor comma was used throughout her writing) as well as paragraph breaks in hopes it’s a little easier to read.

Dear Phemie & Elbert,

We have been looking for a letter from you ever so long, are still expecting you all up here this fall.  I am thinking of visiting Tennessee next summer if I don’t change my mind. 

I believe we’ve had the driest time I ever saw.  My well gets low when I wash but soon fills up again.  Sure have fine water and I have my winter stove wood already up too.  That is a great relief. 

Write soon.

Lizzie Hixson



There you have it.  Less than 250 words written to a sister she had not heard from.  In that she manages to share travel plans, weather report and winter preparations.  She doesn’t explain the picture on the post card – maybe this was her usual writing stock and her sister would not have wondered about the image.  With both greeting and salutation on the card, I wouldn’t expect there was anything else in the envelope. 

Don’t you just wish you could ask her a whole bunch of questions after reading this?  I sure do.