Monday, February 21, 2011

Amanuensis Monday - The Last Letter from Charles Joseph Deller

Digital image of Family Letter Envelope, July 1939, 
Personal collection of D. & M. Deller, Tulsa, OK, © 2011.
This letter was quite a find for us.  We were cleaning out and sorting through old family papers and pictures, when my husband saw his father's "box" of personal items.  It was once a cigar box, now full of little treasures from the past.  Inside the box was a small envelope, dated July 1939, from Charles Joseph Deller, to his son, Charles Franklin Deller.  At the time, we knew Charles Joseph had died in 1939, but had no other information; only a family story of an accidental drowning.

After a search at Fairview Cemetery in Coffeyville, Kansas, and a talk with the very helpful grounds manager, we narrowed down his death to July 1939, and the cemetery record confirmed that it was a drowning.  I then visited the Coffeyville Public Library and searched microfilm of the local paper, hoping to find an obituary or notice of death; instead I was thrilled to find a full article about the accidental drowning in the Coffeyville Daily Journal.  This article (along with the death certificate I obtained from the Oklahoma Health Department confirmed that he died July 15, 1939, only a few days after the letter was posted to his son.

Digital image of Family Letter,
Personal collection of D. & M. Deller, Tulsa, OK, © 2011.
Both pieces of paper were in the envelope, one part written on the back of a used envelope, and the second on a piece of card.  Both are undated.  They are transcribed exactly as written.
Soney - Inclosed you will find a ticket and $1.00  I want you to come through Tulsa so I can get your Scout things and other nessaties and I will take you on to Graneys from here take the afternoon Buss that gets in here at 12 30 P.M. and I will meet you at Bus Terminal.  From what you have told me about the trip to Yellowstone Park you don't have to much time to get ready. so will be looking for you
Love from

Soney - Thanks for thinking of me. I hope you are enjoying your visit. I would like for you to come back in time to spend some time with me. I have a job on outside of the Cosden Bldg. and am doing it at night. so will have all day to be with you. I have a new boat trailer and outboard moter and I'm sure we can havea good time. I also want to get your Scout layout while I am working.
Let me hear from you soon. You should write to your Graney also.
Lots of Love from Dady.
[written on side of page] 711 S Cheyenne Tulsa

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