Jan 24, 2018

 My parents' wedding, January 24, 1948, Hutchinson, Kansas.

Sat, Jan 24, 1948: marriage of their daughter

“The Reverend and Mrs. Alvin White Murray 
request the honour of your presence 
at the marriage of their daughter
Ruth Esther 
Mr. Sidney DeVere Brown
on Saturday, the twenty-fourth of January
at three o’clock
Trinity Methodist Church
Hutchinson, Kansas”

--Wedding invitation to my parents’ wedding, Saturday, January 24, 1948.  With my parents’ wedding, this six-year-long blog project comes to an end.  Once they were married, they, of course, no longer wrote each other letters very often.  My parents were married for 54 years, until my mother’s death in 2002.  They raised four children (I’m the youngest) and both had successful careers. My mother got her Ph.D. in sociology in 1974 and taught sociology and political science for 16 years at Rose State College in Midwest City, Oklahoma. My father completed his Ph.D. in 1952 at University of Wisconsin and taught Japanese history, and Asian history more broadly, at Oklahoma A&M (later Oklahoma State University) and the University of Oklahoma throughout his career. He taught his last class in retirement, just 18 months before he died in 2010. Thanks for giving me the chance to share some of their lives with you.

Jan 21, 2018

Wed, Jan 21, 1948: do things together

"Dearest DeVere,
"This is the last letter you'll get from Ruth Murray, so I'll try to make it good....
"People keep asking me if I'm not excited, but I'm not.  I'm real happy & busy getting things done, but I can't see why I should be nervous or excited now, when I've been planning this for 9 months.
"When I told Mr. Sheppard & Mr. Rinehart that last night, they gave each other a long, very, wise, look, & said I would learn a lot in the next few years.  They then told me about being happily married.  Mr. Rinehart made the most constructive suggestion I've heard yet.  He says it has added a lot to their marriage that they always do things together.  He still helps his wife wipe the dishes.  A-hem!...
"Well, paper's all gone, & I'd better get busy.  I'll see you in just two more days.  All my love to you, sweetheart--and you'd better get here, sir!  Can't you talk someone into coming for the wedding?
"Love & XXX
"Ruth Murray"

--Letter from my mother, Hutchinson, Kans., to my father, Protection, Kans.,Wednesday, January 21, 1948.

Jan 20, 2018

Tue, Jan 20, 1948: four days

"Tonight I sit down to write you just four days before our marriage.  How I wish that I could talk with you--and be with you!  We will have been apart for almost a whole month, when it comes time for the ceremony next Saturday afternoon.  Then we will be together for who knows how many years!  It will mean a drastic change in my mode of life--but a welcome change.  Living alone has ceased to have any appeal for me....
"Until I see you Saturday, don't forget that I love you--and always will.
"Goodnight, sweetheart,

--Letter from my mother, Hutchinson, Kans., to my father, Protection, Kans., Tuesday, January 20, 1948.

Jan 19, 2018

Mon, Jan 19, 1948: our own home

"Right now I'm the loneliest man in Protection.  In a few days my life alone will come to an end.  Since you're coming to live with me, I'm looking forward to the fullest sort of life.  When I come home at night there will be someone waiting for me.  The apartment will look lived in.  And I'll have a chance to kiss my sweetheart--a nice leisurely kiss.  Since it'll be in our own home, there'll be no chance for interruption."

--Letter from my father, Protection, Kans., to my mother, Hutchinson, Kans., Monday, January 19, 1948.

Jan 18, 2018

Sun, Jan 18, 1948: "his doom"

"The day draws nigh.  In just six more we'll be married.  To quote from the High School Spotlight ‘Note: Only 8 more days until Mr. Brown meets his doom.’  I think that I see the fine handiwork of Bob Helman in that statement.  My single life, at least, will be doomed to end."

--Letter from my father, Protection, Kans., to my mother, Hutchinson, Kans., Sunday, January 18, 1948.

Sun, Jan 18, 1948: doubting periods

"I think I've passed my doubting periods--common to all engaged couples--and for a long time have been tempted to run out & get the knot tied, anyway.  Your telling about the problems of school makes me want to be with you to share them firsthand, too."

--Letter from my mother, Winfield, Kans., to my father, Protection, Kans., Sunday, January 18, 1948.

Jan 14, 2018

Wed, Jan 14, 1948: tarred and feathered

"If you hear that I've been tarred and feathered by members of the American history class, don't be surprised.  Several were extremely unhappy when report cards were released today.  The ones who got the F's--three for 3rd six weeks, five on the semester test, & two for the semester are up in arms.  When they flunked a test, it was all a big joke.  When the cards came out the tune changed, however.  The low students aren't the only ones who complain.  Patsy Murphy nearly foamed at the mouth when she discovered that her book report grade was a B+ and not an A.  Some are pleased; but they aren't nearly so vociferous in expressing their opinions."

--Letter from my father, Protection, Kans., to my mother, Winfield, Kans., Wednesday, January 14, 1948.

Jan 13, 2018

Tue, Jan 13, 1948: such a hurry

"Only eleven more days now and I am all in favor of our marriage--I've missed you more & more this week & want to see you so much--I can hardly believe it will be every day before long.  Two weeks from now we'll be back in Protection & you'll be ready to start to work again.  I guess we were foolish to be in such a hurry--I'm sure of it, but if I can just get through till then, I won't care at all if we were."
--Letter from my mother, Winfield, Kans., to my father, Protection, Kans., Tuesday, January 13, 1948.

Jan 12, 2018

Mon, Jan 12, 1948: more lonesome

"I'm getting more lonesome for you each day--and today is no exception.  This is the longest we've been apart for a long time and I miss you.  I talked to Martha Osterhaut today, and we compared notes on our feelings.  She's to the backing-out stage, but I think I've had all of those and gotten over them.  I assured her they were normal--although privately thinking that I might  back out, too, if it were Bill Wakefield, but that was an unnice thought."

--Letter from my mother, Winfield, Kans., to my father, Protection, Kans., Monday, January 12, 1948.