Dear Frances (The early years)

Dear Frances (The early years)

Prelude: Here is another letter from Bern of Wellsville, NY to Miss Frances Fairfield of Hornell, NY. This one was written on April 28, 1935. Both Fran and Bern are in high school. I left all the spelling and grammar mistakes.



Dearest Frances,

I just couldn’t wait until tomorrow. So here I am writing today because I’ve been thinking about a lot of things.

Did you get home safe? I hope so. You’ll have to pardon the writing I you can’t read it because I’m trying to write it in my room so my sisters won’t be bothering me.

I couldn’t very well tell you last night what a swell week-end I had, in front of those fellows.  Really though, and no kidding, I had the swellest time with you that I ‘ve had in a long time. It was sweet of you to have anything to do with me on a blind date anyway. I shall not forget it for a long time. I wish I could see you more often, but again I don’t because you would get sick of seeing me all the time and I want to keep your friendship as long as I can.

All the fellows in town are razzing me today because of the swell looking girl I had last night. They wonder how come I rate. I wonder myself.

I was wishing Louie could get the car and we could go down to see you, but as yet he hasn’t showed up.  Anyway, you’re probably occupied with some lucky boyfriend.

Have you seen Ernie yet? It’s been a long time since I seen him last and I’m beginning to wonder what he looks like.

I would like to have introduced Les Dye, Bobby McCarthy and some of the other fellows in town.  I guess they didn’t see you or I wouldn’t have had a chance.

Pardon the splotch on the other page.  I just did it as I was writing up above.

I wish you were going to be at the Alfred Interscholastic Track Meet! I imagine I would be a lot better than I was if you were going to be there.

My address in case you would like to write is at the top of the letter and the name of the street is “Dyke.”  I thought you probably couldn’t read it.  I’m a lousy writer.

It has been the swellest week-end I have ever had in years. As long as I can remember anyway.

I guess I’m falling in love. I’m saying the same things over and over.  You (How are you?) Me (Just as good as you are!)

Say “Hello” to Clair for me.

Say, Sweets, may I have a picture of you. This isn’t very customary, but I would really like one to have.  Something to make me remember the swell times I had with you.  Of Course, if you’d rather I wouldn’t, it’s alright because I can shut my eyes and remember what you look like.  I couldn’t forget for a long time.

There isn’t much more to say except I wished we hadn’t gone to the show so I could have told you to your face what a lovely time I had.

Well, it’s to late now, but maybe I can the next time you come.  I hope it’s soon because I can’t wait until I see you again.

Promise you’ll write me and the next time I hope I’ll have more interesting things to say to you that you would like.

Lots of Love,  “Bern”

“Behave yourself?”  – Shakespeare  …. (That’s supposed to be a saying of Shakespeare.)



Well, Bern is definitely infatuated with Fran. I like how he couldn’t wait to write her and tell her how he had the swellest time. It’s also interesting to read the little hints of his 1935 machoism, like the fact that he couldn’t tell her how he felt in front of the other fellows, and how he wishes he could have introduced her to his other buddies, like she was a trophy or something. It’s all very interesting. What do you think?


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