The Proposal Accepted

Mershell and Fannie (Turner) Graham. August 1919 Detroit, Michigan.

24 November 1918
Montgomery, Alabama

Dear Shell,

 This has been some cold day, but we went to church this A.M. and heard a splendid sermon on “Thanksgiving.”  Rev. Scott never spoke better.  He’s really great.  The people never will appreciate him until he’s gone.  Last Sunday was Harvest and it was fairly good.  Might have been better but for the flu.  They realized $12.50 from it.  Our club held it’s first meeting last Friday evening at Madaline’s.  She put on a strut, too.  We certainly had a good time.  We are all feeling okay.  Mama is so much better, though she complains yet.

 Now, Shell, about your question.  Willie Lee and several others have been telling me that we were to get married for a month or more.  I’ve been wondering where it all came from.  I know you wrote me some time ago that you had “something to tell me,” but I never dreamed it was on this subject.  It’s all okay though and if you will overlook my deficiencies, I’ll say yes. You know you like good cooking and I’d have to learn to do that, even after working in a grocery store all my life. Ha, ha!  Now that you know about my inability as a cook does it shock you?  Just let me know what you think about it.

 Now, Shell, please don’t write any of this to any one, for it’s our own business and we can keep them guessing awhile longer.  What do you say?  Do this for me as a special request.

 Well, dear, I’m so sleepy that I can’t write longer so you must let me off tonight with just one kiss.  Ha, ha!

              As ever,
              your Fan

To see the proposal letter click  The Proposal – Migration Story.
To read all about the wedding, click Announcement


Being in the middle of the corona pandemic 2020, I decided to look back at my family history and see if anything was mentioned about the spanish influenza pandemic of 1918. I remembered that my grandmother wrote in a letter to my grandfather that church attendance was down because of the flu.

Because my grandmother was living in Montgomery, Alabama at the time, I took a look to see what the Montgomery newspaper’s were saying about the flu in November, 1918.

The article below came out the same day as the Sunday service mentioned in the letter.

Click to enlarge.

Click for more about Dr. Bell’s Pine-Tar-Honey mentioned in the advertisement above.

10 thoughts on “The Proposal Accepted

  1. I am not surprised she said yes to the charming Shell. They were a lovely couple.

  2. I do so love these letters. Her nervousness comes through, as does her determination to trust her judgement. I'm so glad she said yes!

  3. What great letters! You're so lucky to have both ends of the conversation. Can you imagine how happy they each were when the mailman came?

  4. This is such a wonderful letter. What a peek it is into a personal relationship of the past.

  5. Thank you for sharing, Kristen. Your grandparents’ letters are a joy to read. What a time in history.

    1. I am so grateful that they both saved them so I can have both sides of the conversation. And I am so grateful to have them. They introduced me to my grandparents in a whole different way than I knew them growing up.

  6. That article is so interesting. It could apply to the present moment, except the tone of it is so much more restrained, polite, non hysterical. Your family is so very good looking.

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