“Your little Girlie would love to give you a good big smacking kiss and a great big hug”
The following letters were found in an antique shop in Prescott, Arizona. The majority of the letters are written by a girl named Lillie Jackson (age 15) to her boyfriend (and later husband) Georgie Jandreau (age unknown) between the years 1917 and 1919. Georgie lived in La Salle, Colorado and Lillie lived in Fort Lupton, Colorado. Today, the distance would be about a 25 minute drive. It is unknown how the two met, but the first letter suggests that Georgie used to live in Lillie’s house. La Salle, Colorado was a small, agricultural town that did not have street lights until 1913. In addition, the town did not have sewer system until 1939. It is likely that Georgie’s parents were farmers. Although Fort Lupton, Lillie’s residence, was also a small town, it was growing steadily. Fort Lupton opened its first large movie theater in 1917, the year that Lillie’s letters begin (there was a makeshift movie theater before this but it was in a local barn with benches for seats). In 1913, Fort Lupton established its first large-scale school building, where Lillie likely attending school.
Below is the transcription of the first letter. Errors that impacted the meaning of the letters were edited, but all other errors or grammar mistakes were kept. (Keep in mind this is the writing of a 15 year old girl). Also, some of the letters contain several pages that were written on different days, but all of the pages are included within one “letter” entry.
Dec. 17, 1917
My Darling Boy,
I am going to write you a little sweet letter tonight just to tell you that (I love you)
Sweetheart there is going to be a dance here next Friday night. Elmer phoned mamma and ask if he could bring a crowd out here Sat. and she said to come a night sooner because Sat. is too close to Christmas and we’ve got so much to do Sat. for Christmas dinner. I suppose they will tell you about it in town but I wanted to tell you too and I want you to be sure and come ( I don’t suppose anything could keep you away from here unless you were sick, do you, Hon.)
We went to the show again tonight all of us Sylvia & Herman & Bess too.
Well Hon I don’t know for sure but I think we are going to Denver wed. and we are going to Greeley tomorrow and don’t know what time we will be home, somewhere around nine o’clock I guess, if you haven’t gone to bed by that time you might call me up or else wed. morning before you go to work, for we will get up pretty early on account of going to Denver.
Oh yes, I want to tell you that I want to talk to you and tell you something before you get that Christmas present.
Well Sweetheart I must say goodbye because mamma & I are the only ones up & she is ready for bed & it is 25 min of one now. So Bye Bye
From your Darling Girlie
X big one
Excuse writing or scribbling
Fort Lupton, Colo.
Dec 20., 1917
Darling Sweetheart (I mean it too)
I am going to write a few lines now before the mailman comes and maybe some more tonight, but I don’t want it to make you feel bad, like the other one did. Has Mose told you what that is yet. If he has don’t forget to tell me again when you see me.
I guess the mailman is coming or else papa, I don’t know but I guess its the mailman, so I’ll have to mail this in town in the p.m. either Brighton or Lupton.
I am afraid you don’t think I’m true to you and if Mose tell you much more I’m afraid you will think it stronger than ever. But Sweetheart don’t let him tell you too much. I haven’t thought yet what I told him. It has been on my mind since you told me.
I got a lot of new music when I was in Denver. This is some of them, “When the clouds of war roll by” it is real pretty & “Somewhere in France is the Lily” & “Goodbye Little Girl, Goodbye,” & “I May Be gone for a long, long time” & “Someone who loves you is lonely” & some more but those are the prettiest one and I think of you everytime I sing them or look at them.
Well Sweetheart I guess I will quit now & maybe write some more this afternoon so bye, bye for now.
Oh yes I wanted to tell you that I loved you just a whole pile of heap (Ha Ha). Your little Girlie would love to give you a good big smacking kiss and a great big hug. Well will have to do the rest of my work now Honey, so goodbye again (my good Sweetheart boy).
Well I just finished my dishes and will now finish this letter.I have never written to Albert yet but think I will Fri. or Sat. Gee I just cut my finger on an old tin can and it hurts awful bad. Wish you were here to kiss it.
Say Honey, Elmer was just here a few minutes ago and said they would have to have the dance tomorrow night (Fri) because there were some folks coming down from Denver and he didn’t have any way to let them know. I told mamma you said you couldn’t come by if it was on Fri and she tried her best to get Elmer to come Sat. but he said he couldn’t on account of those Denver folks. But Sweetheart do try to come, won’t you? Because I can’t have no good time at all if you aren’t here. Do come please Honey if you can. Have to quit & eat supper.
Well Hon I tho’t I was going to get to mail this but I guess I’m not going to before I see you, maybe I will give it to you tomorrow night, if you come out. Mamma just read this before supper and after she got through she said “Gee that’s sure is some sweet letter.” What do you think about it anyway?
X a good one, another one like we like
Well I got all my Christmas presents yesterday, even yours. Sure wish you had been with us. We sure could of found a ring like I want. Do you think you are going to get it before Christmas time? Only 5 more days.
Well Sweetheart I am all undressed ready for bed so I guess I will have to close for this time. I and Baby are sleeping in your bed now and I always think of you every time I go to bed. Well Darling I am going to say goodbye now,
From your Darling Sweetheart Girlie
I’d love to give you all of them right now
I LOVE YOU SWEETHEART
Say Sweetheart I have kissed this & kissed & kissed so you want to be sure to get all of them off from this letter. Oh Darling but I love you. You just don’t know how much. (here is one good kiss X a real one.