Emma C. Anthony Letter

(Tishomingo County (MS) Historical & Genealogical Society Newsletter)
Vol. 10 No. 2 Page
19 May 2005

The following letter was addressed to Mr. John W. Williams, Iuka, Miss. It was written by Mrs. W. W. Anthony, 108 6th Street, Pulaski, Tennessee, in 1922. The envelope is postmarked at 4 P.M. in Pulaski, Tenn., in January. No year is shown on the envelope. The letter was transcribed by Ranae Vaughn exactly as it was written.

108 6th St.
Pulaski, Tenn.
Dec. 6th 1922

Mr. John W. Williams

Dear Sir:

Ever since the passing away of your old comrade on July 7th 1921 I have desired to write to you, and to others whom he loved, but the long three years of his invalidism, and his last terrible illness where I never left him for rest or sleep only to take the necessary food to enable me to stay by him, and relieve or mitigate if possible his great suffering, as were upon me, that when he no longer needed me, my strength forsook me, and I went down with nerve exhaustion from which I have not even yet recovered being today, hardly able to control my pen. I was so delighted to get the card you intended for your old comrade for it assured me you were still able to send greetings. He would have appreciated it so much had he been here as he always did a letter or card from you, he clung as fondly to .The boys. As he called all the old soldiers and especially to memories of you, as you are one of the twelve who went to the army with him. The members of the John Woldridge Birmac here were very attentive and kind during the three years of his declining health, and performed the last sad rites for him in a most impressive and beautiful way. It would have done your soul good to have seen your old comrade as he lay here in the home he loved so well, in that last quiet sleep with his cross of honor lying upon his breast. It seemed that trouble, sickness and age had fallen from him like a worn garment, and that his youth had been renewed and his countenance glorified. Many friends remarked the wonderful change. It seemed indeed as if .This mortal had put on immortality. And that .Death was swallowed up in victory.. He answered the .Last roll call. Quietly, just as a little child gone to sleep. He knew for weeks that it was coming and showed no fear, but answered .Ready. As a soldier answers the call to duty. Dec. 24th was our forty-eighth anniversary. All I could do to celebrate the day was to lay christmas garlands upon the mound which covered my faithful partner of so many years. A confederate flag waves over his resting place. He has three children lying there by him. My place is waiting. Our lovely son, John, who is a physician in Birmingham, was with his father during his last illness, which was a great comfort to William and to me. Our only daughter came from Chicago and did all she could for help and comfort. The poor sufferer lacked nothing that love and money could provide but we could not arrest the bladder trouble which prisoned and paralyzed his brain. He left to me a good, very desirable home in fine repair and enough income to keep me the rest of my days. My two children are dutiful and lovely to me. Thirty years ago we adopted an orphan girl and eight years ago we took another, then five years of age. She is thirteen now, strong and smart. These two are with me still. If it were not for having them, I would have to break up my home. They have been so fine and devoted that I feel I must still keep a home for them. Dear mr. Williams, if possible, let me hear from you as often as is convenient. I will appreciate the kindness. They tell me I will be better, and I hope to be able to write to you if that be true.

Believe me, your sincere friend,

Emma C. Anthony
108 6th St.
Pulaski, Tenn.

Submitted by: Brenda Whitfield