Monday, January 19, 2015

Jennie Acton's Letter, Jan. 9, 1906

Letter from Jennie Acton, from The Semi-Weekly Messenger, Wilmington, N.C., published January 9, 1906. There’s a mention of an accident with a toy gun received for Christmas. In case you are wondering what happened, the child died of lockjaw.

Here I come wishing all of you a Happy New Year. What did you do Christmas? We had a delightful time—I have lived long enough to know that in promoting the happiness of others you add to your own. Especially is this true in regard to making children enjoy themselves. Our Christmas tree was a success, but we came very near having a serious time of it, as a candle ignited some of the paper ornaments on it, and in the scuffle which ensued Santa got on fire—or at least the cotton his suit was trimmed in did. There was plenty of help to put the fire out, and we were all right and soon got over the scare.

I never heard of so many accidents from toy pistols and guns. What is the matter with people that they have grown so careless? I have put my pistol away and am almost afraid to look at it for fear it will blaze away and shoot me anyway whether I touch it or not, and as to showing it to a friend, I never think of doing such a thing. I wonder if folks won’t be afraid to hunt after this? I would. It might be a good thing for the farmers if they would stop for a few years; then the partridges would be numerous enough to help them some. I don’t think there is any meat better than squirrel unless it is wild turkey, but tame ones are good, too.

Well, I do not usually tell my ailments, but I must tell you this time that I am afflicted with a stiff neck, and while I write I must sit perfectly erect and look over my cheeks at the paper or raise it so high that I can hardly write. I hope that in a few days I won’t be so high-headed and can see things at my feet.

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