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Letter to mother describing a busy day with friends, working on forensic theme about Ireland, attending lectures, discussing music grades, her roommate's economics class, clothing needs, travel plans home for Thanksgiving, and news that her Composition teacher is getting married and will be replaced next term by a male teacher.
206 College Hall, Wellesley, Massachusetts, 28 November, 1911. Dear Mamma: A pair of gloves doesn't look much like a cantata, does it? But I was glad to get them just the same. I went to the vill the other day, and they kept my hands nice and warm. Well! such a siege of it as we have had! To-day - right now - is the first real breathing space. I'm glad a little vacation is coming to relieve the monotony. You see, it was this way. It was our turn to get the Sunday meal, so we chose to have breakfast. [page 2] Then we had invited Anne McKeon and the two other girls over from Natick, to have supper in our room and go to musical vespers with us. We also invited Bennie and Doris to come to dinner. So the day was as follows: We arose at seven-thirty, dressed, cooked and ate our breakfast, which took us till half-past ten. Then we hurriedly changed our clothes and flew off to chapel, leaving Nell and Julia to do the dishes. We sat almost on the front seat, and heard a good sermon. When we came back we dressed again for dinner, and meanwhile Bennie arrived. After dinner we sat around in the parlor as usual, and listened to the music. I played a little after everyone had gone. Then we came upstairs and read stories aloud, and made fudge. Soon Connie [page 3] dropped in on her way home from the Zoo. lab. where she had been working. They stayed till five o’clock, and as soon as they went we set to work getting supper. The girls from Natick came pretty soon, and we had a dandy time. Went to vespers, which were very nice, especially “Parsifal” and Shumann’s “Nachstück” [mis-spelling: Schumann’s “Nachtstüke”] on the organ. After we came back we served coffee and made fudge again. It didn't cook right this time, so had to be done over, and kept us busy till the p.m., after which we had to wash dishes. This fudge we saved to give to the Students’ Building fair, as we had promised some. It sounds like a strenuous day, but the only chance we have to be sociable and entertain our friends is on Sunday, so we have to use all opportunities. [page 4] Yesterday I devoted wholly and entirely to my Forensic, with the exception of one practise period and a walk to the vill. I managed to get it done, though, by two p.m., so I don't feel that the time was wasted. Ireland is a very interesting subject. I don't believe I could bring my work home now, but will get it all back later on in the year. Last night I also found time to attend a lecture on “Oxford in the Eighties and Nineties”, by an English woman. It was very interesting, and was illustrated. Say, do you remember whether or not “Miss Arnold”, who lives at Fox Howe, is the niece of Matthew Arnold, or some other relation? If so, she is the one who lectured here a few weeks ago. I just found out about it. The lecture was on “Arnold of Rugby.” [page 5] Yesterday was the most delightfully warm spring day; it was almost impossible to believe that Christmas is in just four weeks. We went into the Student Building Fair a few minutes, but I couldn't buy anything, because I was out of change. The display was very tempting. Friday afternoon I went to see Prof. Macdougall. I found him in the library, up in the book stacks. I told him I was disappointed in my work, and tried to find out what he expected. He was very nice, and considered the whole thing far less seriously than I thought. He said he shouldn't count the marks on these notebooks at all. I also told him how much [deletion: the] I enjoyed the choir’s singing of “Hark, hark my soul”, and explained to him how to [page 6] pronounce my name. After this interesting interview, imagine my surprise at what happened in class Saturday morning! He gave us a kind of quizz (mis-spelling: quiz), which I hadn't expected, (but it was a cinch), and then suddenly said, “Will Miss Rosa please gather up the papers?” He pronounced it right too. I suppose he thought he better practice saying it so he wouldn't forget. I think the rest of the class was as amused as I. Mr. Hamilton now remains to be conquered. At the music class the other day he called me “Rosah’ ” in the role - call. That's quite a new way. If I could only do something to make myself notorious enough, so that people would know my name from hearsay! [page 7] It would save so much trouble. My gym teacher says every time, “I cannot pronounce that name. How did you say it was?” I'm getting weary of telling her. I have just now been to see Miss Conant about presenting at Midyears’ those papers which I didn't write during the summer. I had to cut a class to do it, but it was all in a good cause. The clipping you enclosed was very interesting. The Miss Cowles mentioned, owns a very fine old house next door to the Hawleys’, which is shut up and said to be haunted. Esther and I got into it while I was there, and explored. Esther is rather offended at your remark about trying to emulate Hetty Green. She thinks you don't realize the practical [page 8] value of that Economics course. We are much exited [mis-spelling: excited] about going home to-morrow, but there is lots to be done before then. The instructors are piling in quizzes right and left, so that every one is about distracted. Luckily I don't have any till Saturday. If I decide after investigating my chiffonier, that I am going to need laundry again before coming home, I will get it ready to-night or to-morrow morning so that it will reach you this week. Otherwise I won't send it till about the time I come. Esther's coat came and is very cute. It is brown Russian Pony and is about the length of yours. But I still think I want a [deletion: bla] long one. The black ones are pretty, but are so extremely common, still it would look better with my hat then brown. [page 9] The clothes question continues to absorb. We got out the pink satin and examined it carefully the other day. Have you forgotten that I spoke of having it made over with that painted scarf of mine? Or don't you want to use the scarf? Point d’esprit would be very nice, but Esther thinks pink would look “like an actress!” As to how it shall be fixed, she says it must be low neck (not just Dutch, but low), and the skirt must fit tightly instead of bagging around as it does now. All I can think of for a dark dress is blue, but I haven't seen what the stores have, at all. What is the prevailing color? I'll tell you what I'd like, and that is a dress of black velvet, with real Irish collar and cuffs! [page 10] Senior year I'm going to want just “ slews” of white skirts and white tailored waists, so you may be preparing for that. The tailored waists would be handy now, in fact. I am going to send home with my laundry next time, the white waist I got in Boston. I've only worn it once because the cuffs of the sleeves are too large. After you get it fixed I can wear it oftener, but there's no hurry. I have taken my sweater down to Mrs. Davis’ to have it washed. I'll try and keep it nice till I come home, so it won't need cleaning again right away. Thanks very much for the check and the [page 11] fine letter about stocks and bonds. It's a great help (both are). Esther insists that she's going to pay for my ticket to Hartford and back, but I won't let her, will I? We've decided to go by the main line of the N.Y.N.H & H,, that is, go in to Boston and take the two o’clock train from there. It doesn't involve any waiting or changing, and gets us to Hartford a little sooner. We will get back Friday about noon. It's impossible to realize that Thanksgiving is here, and most of all that Christmas vacation is only 2 weeks off. I know the rest of the time will just fly! Your letter of Sunday has come now, so I will answer that too. It's very nice that Mrs. Moore and her daughter are to be there, but won't it be too much on your mind? [page 12] I can't send you my white dress just yet, because I'm going to take it to Farmington. But I'll try to get it to you next week. If you wear that at the cantata, what do I wear? A white skirt I suppose. The extra material for the choir sounds rather promising. But how can the Satterlee boys be in it? I thought they were in Rochester Business school. I fear the pianist will need to be quite proficient to keep up with such a fine choir. My alarm clock daily refuses to go off, so I haven't been doing so much in the getting-up line as I hoped. I don't know what is the matter of it. Miss Taylor (English Comp. teacher) announced to-day that after Christmas we are to have a man teacher! She's going to be married. Must stop now. With all kinds of love and wishes for Happy Thanksgiving, Mary
Dress;Faculty, Staff, Administrators;Academics;Student Life
Lectures and lecturing; Clothing and dress; Travel; Thanksgiving Day; College Hall
Rosa, Mary and Wellesley College Archives, "Letter from Mary Rosa, Wellesley, Massachusetts, to her mother, 1911 November 28" (1911). Mary Rosa letters (6C1914). 284.