Hortense wants a garnet

by DRM

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Hot Springs, Arkansas
Nov. 21 – 1915

Dear papa,

I am going to write you again to see if you got my letter if you did why is it you do not write it will be two weeks Tuesday since I wrote you.  Papa my birthday is two months from Monday which is the 22nd and I will be seventeen.  And in one year from then I hope to be at home with you.  Papa if you don’t send me some money to have my eyes treated and my glasses changed I don’t know what I will do for my eyes are getting worse every day and I can hardly see to study.  Papa I have a ring and I want you to have my birthstone in it for me for Christmas please and then I want a Lavaliere for my birthday.  I have had five chills since I have been here three hard ones and two light ones and I was certainly sick.  Papa if you ever get a chance to come to Hot Springs please come to see me for I get awful home sick to see my old friends and everybody I know if Little Rock.  I like the Convent and three of the Mothers especially but I like all of the Mothers.  Papa please phone Main 699 and ask for Marguarette Workman and ask her to tell you the phone no. of the people that are the closest to sister and talk to her and tell her to write to me.  Also write to Lewis and tell him to write to me. address his letter to Mr. Jury Whit Mount Ida.  If you will have a stone put in my ring please let me know.  I will have to close for this time with lots of love and kisses.

Your loving daughter,
Hortense Rogers

The two sisters lost their mother when they were little and were put in a Children’s Home in Little Rock with their baby brother. Their mother’s family was scattered all about Arkansas and East Texas, but no one could take the children in. Their father took to drink and bumped from trade to trade. He finally died in 1920 and was buried in an unmarked grave.

Hortense was the oldest. She stands to the left in this picture, pretty and in her Sunday best with her sister Margaret, who had been taken in by a German family who lived in North Little Rock.

Three years later, Hortense will be dead.

Her birthstone was garnet.

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