Helen Woodrow Bones to Jessie Woodrow Wilson Sayre




Helen writes to Jessie about choosing gifts for Nell (Eleanor Wilson MacAdoo) and other family members, updates her on her social activities, and mentions meeting Lilian (Gish?).


Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library, Princeton University




Dearest Jessie

Of all the hard questions you might have asked me, you asked the very hardest to answer! Margaret and I are in despair for she Nell has everything except “bureau covers and a silver frame.” Those are the two things she says she wants and they sound so easy, but—! She herself says that one bureau cover wouldn't do her any good, as she has a bureau, a dressing table, and a chiffonier! I suggested to Margaret that you and she and I each give her one and she said that nothing in the way of a cover, under five or six dollars would suit Nell; and I think it's so, and I for one can't spend five dollars on any one person. The frame we could manage if the three of us went in to together—but there you are with a husband! Of course you want to give your present as from the two of you. The only thing I can suggest as something she will need later no matter how many she has now are luncheon doylies.
You ask about Brother Bill. I dont know about Margaret, but I'm going to give him a foolish book. Why dont you give whatever you do give Nell to them both?I know I'm no earthly help to you honey, but I cant be! There's a lady wants nothing but bedspreads (by twos), bureau covers (by threes) and silver picture frames that are good-looking, what's the use!Honey child, don't do a lot of shopping and tire yourself out! You are so wonderfully well that it would be wicked to take any chances and you know Christmas shopping is tiring at any time.
We've had quite a full week this past week. Lillian Sheridan Crompton came down Wednesday and will leave us to-morrow, and Mr. and Miss Dodge and a friend of theirs, Miss Appleton, came on Thursday and stayed till yesterday morning. Mr. D. had to attend the Carnegie performance or the Red Cross meeting or something and he and the girls are out most of the time, but I saw enough of Miss Dodge (the daughter, you know) to like her very much. She was anxious to hear all about you and I told her what a wonder you are. By the way, they—or, rather, Mr. Dodge—has the frankest way of talking about future babies I've ever known. He jokes of his grandchildren and Margaret asked him how many he had. “OnTwo,” he said, “but weI'll soon have two more—maybe three, for the Syrian baby may be twins, as they run in the family”! I may say it's refreshing to hear people talk right out about what is not only perfectly proper but to my mind thrillingly interesting and very beautiful and wonderful.
Isn't Lillian a dear! I expected her to be “soulful” and affected but she's just as natural as can be and apparently has just common-or-garden ideas!Scarce scraps! My conscience hurts when I waste Uncle S's writing paper so I always use odd pieces of on the family.
With lots of love, dear, for you and F.and,

Yours lovingly

Original Format





Bones, Helen Woodrow, “Helen Woodrow Bones to Jessie Woodrow Wilson Sayre,” 1914 December 13, WWP17510, Jessie Wilson Sayre Correspondence, Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library & Museum, Staunton, Virginia.