Anna Marcet Haldeman to Jane Addams, October 29, 1915


Dearest Auntie,

It has been lovely to get your letters and I am sorry the family has been so uncomfortable generally. I am very well myself and whenever I wonder whether or not life is worth living, I remind myself that as Butler says "This is a question for an embryo not for a man." And one way and another I manage to get on alright and "keep drunken."

The bank is doing splendidly better than ever before in its history. The last time I compared with the same date last year we had something like [missing page?] [page 2] though of course the Farlington bank which is starting this week will undoubtedly affect us to some extent. (We are putting a thousand more to surplus -- I want to put a thousand each year -- and in the spring we are going to change our front to one of stone -- and make some necessary changes inside. I've had the architect already draw up the plans. I want the place where I work and spend my life to be beautiful -- with a dignified simple beauty!)

I belong to our Commercial Club here and find my membership in it of much value to me in many, many ways. I sort of hate to be the only woman among 125 men -- but I don't mind so much as I did. We meet every Tuesday evening -- I am [page 3] on the Civic Affairs Committee. I like being on it -- because there is so much to do!

And I am deep in the Correspondence Course I told you in the Spring I intended to take. I find it very absorbing. Am working just now in Commercial Law and Negotiable Instruments.

And my Sunday afternoon Teas have become popular little affairs. Everyone seems to have entirely forgotten <-- even Mrs B. --> their obsession that an upstairs room must be a bed-room and they have even become quite unconscious of my dressing table (which used to frankly worry some of the good ladies). It has been good fun to watch them all evolute from a small town point of view to a [page 4] more simple, natural one. Generally husbands and wives, or boys and their "girls" or several boys or several girls come together.

My room is really very inviting and homey, for my electric fire place, so warm and glowing and convincing that my beautiful Persian Cat loves to stretch out before it (when she is not making even more lovely and decorative pictures of herself), the flowers that (result of Bar Harbor influence) I have sent <come> by standing order twice a week (both here and to the bank) my Victrola with [its] varied records and the little electric stove where "the soughing of the pines is heard in our kettle" -- all give a very cozy atmosphere, and it is a [page 5] kind of game I play with myself to keep the conversation away from petty gossip and yet to keep it really interesting for every one. And you've no idea how much easier it is to do so now than it was at first. Often, I read bits out of the different magazines -- in the pages and with the writers of which I spend so much of my truest life, sometimes we enjoy together a new poem or part of a play I have just discovered or happen to be rereading and without their quite realizing it I lead even the most prosaic among my guests "to dream" with me "of evanescence" and "linger" with me "in the beautiful foolishness of things." [page 6]

"Trust love, even if it brings sorrow
Do not close up your heart!"

And I love you, my own darling Auntie and press my gentlest and most tender of kisses on your dear cheek!


Saturday [etc.]
Oct 29, 1915

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