The Life and Letters of Elizabeth Prentiss eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 929 pages of information about The Life and Letters of Elizabeth Prentiss.

From New York she writes to Miss Shipman, October 24th: 

Your letter came just as we started for Poughkeepsie.  The Synod met there and I was invited to accompany George, and, quite contrary to my usual habits, I went.  We had a nice time.  I feel that you are in the best place in the world.  Next to dying and going home one’s self, it must be sweet to accompany a Christian friend down to the very banks of the river.  Isn’t it strange that after such experiences we can ever again have a worldly thought, or ever lose the sense of the reality of divine things!  But we are like little children—­ever learning and ever forgetting.  Still, it is well to be learning, and I envy you your frequent visits to the house of mourning.  You will miss your dear friend very much.  I know how you love her.  How many beloved ones you have already lost for a season!...  Don’t set me to making brackets.  I am as worldly now as I can be, and my head full of work on all sorts of things.  I made two cornucopias of your pattern and filled them with grasses and autumn leaves, and they were magnificent.  I got very large grasses in the Rockaway marshes.  The children are all well and as gay as larks.

Early in November the corner-stone of the Church of the Covenant was laid.  She wrote the following hymn for the occasion: 

  A temple, Lord, we raise;
  Let all its walls be praise
      To Thee alone. 
  Draw nigh, O Christ, we pray,
  To lead us on our way,
  And be Thou, now and aye,
      Our corner-stone.

  In humble faith arrayed,
  We these foundations laid
      In war’s dark day. 
  Oppression’s reign o’erthrown,
  Sweet peace once more our own,
  Do Thou the topmost stone
      Securely lay.

  And when each earth-built wall
  Crumbling to dust shall fall,
      Our work still own. 
  Be to each faithful heart
  That here hath wrought its part,
  What in Thy Church Thou art—­
      The Corner-stone.

* * * * *

III.

Happiness in her Children.  The Summer of 1864.  Letters from Hunter.  Affliction among Friends.

In the early part of 1864 she was more than usually afflicted with neuralgic troubles and that “horrid calamity,” as she calls it, sleeplessness.  “I know just how one feels when one can’t eat or sleep or talk.  I declare, a good deal of the time pulling words out of me is like pulling out teeth.”

Still (she writes to a sister-in-law, Jan. 15th), we are a happy family in spite of our ailments.  I suffer a great deal and cause anxiety to my husband by it, but then I enjoy a great deal and so does he, and our younger children—­to say nothing of A.—­are sources of constant felicity.  Do not you miss the hearing little feet pattering round the house?  It seems to me that the sound of my six little feet is the very pleasantest sound in the

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The Life and Letters of Elizabeth Prentiss from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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