March 31, 1926.
Dear Campbell Cousins:-
I hope I am not too late with my addition to the "book of letters". I have been fighting a severe cold for nearly three weeks and have not felt a bit like writing a letter that would go in print and be read by so many relatives.
I never dreamed that my plans would take the turn they did this past year. I signed up to go back to Minneapolis to teach and expected to take my mother with me. Harry had us all believing that he was taking in another housekeeper on a life contract and then he changed his plans. I was getting so "schoolteacherish" and cranky that the folks thought a year at home would do me good, so I changed my plans, too, and got released from my contract. Mother, Harry and I have enjoyed being together on the farm.
In November I called the girls in the neighborhood to my home one Saturday afternoon and we organized a club which has steadily gained in popularity, numbers, and recognition outside of our community. We call ourselves 'The Daughters of the Soil". Our Program is increasing all the time. At present we are trying to work out an honor system similar to that of the well know Camp Fire Girls. We are planning a "Mothers and Daughters" banquet for the eighth of May to which every mother in the neighborhood is to be invited. If everyone comes we will have forty-five mothers and daughters to be served. I am going to repeat our object to you for I think it is worth while and some of you may be interested.
Article II of our by-laws reads:
"The purpose of this Society shall be to stimulate, promote and encourage the growth of the deepest and best desires of each member. A better working knowledge of all things cultural will be aimed at. Where possible any special talent of any member will be given an opportunity for expression.
The activities shall not be limited but at all times shall be in compliance with the immediate interests of the Club members and shall be decided upon by majority vote of members present at any meeting of the Society.
The main object of this club shall be to influence its members, the community in which it exists, and, it is hoped, the surrounding communities as well to appreciate the
status of the farmer and, because of this appreciation, t proudly enter into a rural program which shall attract and maintain within rural communities a leadership which heretofore has gone out, over eighty percent strong, to the city places to the detriment of rural communities, but to the decided advantage of urban communities."
I won't elaborate on the rural problem, although it is a subject I am vitally interested in, but if any of the Cousins lives in a rural community where there are several girls and would be interested in starting something among them, I will be most happy to send a copy of our by-laws to that Cousin and tell more about our club, which I think is doing something toward solving the rural problem. The entire neighborhood has been having "get-together" meetings once a month and we have had some fine programs.
The women are organized into a home demonstration project club. At present we are studying the clothing project under the direction of a home demonstration agent from the State University. You see we are busy. Then I have only told you part of our activities. All winter I have been giving the young people a Bible course on Sunday afternoons following "A Beginners Course in Bible Study" by McConaughy. Harry has been interested in promoting some dairy meetings which have been held in our town hall. I am newspaper correspondent for our community. I think I have told our outstanding activities. Lately I have been assisting our County Superintendent of Schools in her office. I enjoy that immensely.
We greatly enjoyed a visit from "Cousin Charlie" this winter. He never forgets us even though we are a bit out of the way, as Brainerd is not on the main line of the Northern Pacific any more.
It has taken me five days to get this letter written so I think I had better send what I have without further delay.
I have a copy of Aunt Jane Tubbs' Family History which was read at the Campbell Reunion in August, 1901; also another paper by her called "Mother's Memoir". I would be only too glad to make copies of these papers for the C.C.C. if they are wanted. These papers were sent to my grandmother.1
COUSIN MARY HUGHEY.
1. Those items appear later in Vol 4. In addition, Mary wrote an autobiography which is being turned into HTML and well be added to this web site's "Documents" section.
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