Since we cannot bring you our annual 4th of July Picnic in 2020, we invite you to step back in time with us to experience a 4th of July on Alki 115 years ago. Our wonderful volunteer, Gail Lansing, has transcribed a letter from our collection describing a beautiful July day on Alki in 1905. Pour yourself a tall glass of iced tea and savor the words from a summer long ago.
Note: Spelling and punctuation are as they appear in the letter. Ellipses indicate an indecipherable word or phrase.
It must be that since you have a telephone – you are too “set up” to have anything to do with your poor relatives. It’s been several weeks since I’ve heard from you (directly) and Alice wrote that they expected you to spend Commencement week with them – but that you failed to appear – Please give an account of your self – to …
Wish you were here – It’s a perfect summer day – temperature just right – I don’t know – just what the temperature is – but it’s just warm enough to be comfortable with a thin waist on – and there a lovely cool breeze – Yesterday it was hot they say – 83 in the shade –but I didn’t realize it – Frank came home – tired and wilted after a long walk – and was quite disgusted because I didn’t think it was ‘warm’ – We are enjoying every minute of our camping out – and I am so much better – not as well yet as I was when I returned from Arizona – but am hoping I will be – by the time we leave here – I can’t tell you how beautiful it is – You’ll just have to come and see for yourself – When you come to the C.E. convention next summer we will bring you over here – I don’t believe one Puget Sound sunset would compare unfavorably with the Egyptian desert sunsets or the Italian ones – Mary Post writes about – and the tide is so wonderful to me – I love to watch it come creeping creeping in and I love more to see it recede – there is something terrible – almost it’s coming in too like a monster – reaching – reaching reaching – after something – Sometimes it seems as if it would overflow the little cottages and tents along the beach – but it hasn’t yet – It brings us our fire wood – Frank goes down and collects it in the early morning – I love the murmur and sighing of the pines – It has the same lulling effect that the lapping of the waves on the beach has –
We are both hungry all the time I never imagined I could be so hungry – Everything tastes good – We have had the most lucious strawberries and such big ones – We measured some one night – they averaged 6 ½ by 5 ½ – inches Didn’t take many to fill a dish – neither were there many in the box – Now I’m not going to write a letter – as it will only put you deeply in debt to me – – – –
Suppose Grace Miller is home and her tongue has been flying ever since she reached there – She said she was going to see you – some time let us hear from you – I’m glad you have a phone – When I get to Milton again I’ll just phone I’m coming down and Aunt Nan will have no excuse for having “nothing to eat”
It occurs to me you had a birthday anniversary Sunday. Many happy returns of the day tho I’m a trifle late with my wish – Frank is to celebrate tomorrow – I am going to make him a cake –
We are expecting Mayme Allen every day.
Love to all, Helen
Here’s a photo from our collection of Alki on the 4th of July a few years later in 1908
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