Frances to Margaret O'Farrell, September 28, 1918


Fort Yukon, Alaska
Sept 28, 1918

St. Stephen's Mission,
Fort Yukon, Alaska

Mrs. Frank O'Farrell,
Tanana, Alaska

Dear Margaret:

Your good letter came quite a little while ago and I would surely have answered it before now had I had a breaking space before this writing.

Walter's telegram told you something of the rapidly development of our plans and you can well appreciate that I had my hands full trying to keep up with myself (!!) not to mention any such branches as correspondence. I certainly would have loved to have fallen in with your suggested plan for us to take care of each other while our men were off hunting but fate deemed it otherwise and I found the ranks of the moose hunters.

We are just back and have had one famous time - we were gone almost three weeks - our luck was fair, Walter getting two moose, two caribou and three bears besides small game as ducks and a porcupine. Walter saw many moose, sixteen I believe but they were all believed too great a distance of "niger heads" to make packing possible and the water in all creeks, sloughs, etc., was too low for even a small boat such as we had. But it was all miles of fun and I venture to say that no two people could have gotten more real pleasure out of it than we did.

I certainly had many new excitements and different sensations as I roughed it with Walter, part of the times tramping and climbing and watching and sleeping where we stopped with and without bedding and after the second night, forgetting we had a tent and stove. I had a full and generous {initiation} into the art of removing the fat from the fresh hides of the three bears which I perfectly innocently and confidently offered to undertake while Walter went off for three days hunting which would involve greater exposure than he thought best for me to risk. This was at a camp called "Woodchopper" where the road house is kept by a woman I knew in Circle last spring and where I stayed quite comfortably under the protection of her wing and earned my name of "Greasy Harper"!!

I wish it had been possible to have had you and Frank with us for the "big event". It was all very happy and everyone worked mighty hard to do all in their power to make it just as happy for us as was possible. Some of our friends even went so far as to work all day in the chapel arranging the autumn foliage in an arch and other decorations which made the Chapel most attractive. After the ceremony the guests came here for an informal reception and "eats" before Walter and I started up the Porcupine in the doctor's launch to a camp made for us by him the day before and where we stayed until time to get ready for the steamer to go up river.

We are now waiting for the Yukon to get back here and are trusting that our wire to transfer our reservations to this trip from the last one was as successful as the one we missed as they had a dandy state room on the "Texas" waiting for us.

We are mighty sorry to have missed the Tanana folk that we had hoped to go out with but the temptation to hunt longer, as the weather was ideal and our "grub" plentiful was too great, especially as it meant that we would not have to stop over at Dawson but go straight on to White Horse on the same boat.

We are sending a package by this same mail addressed to you,. In it there is a small sack which I hope will prove useful. It brings a great deal of love and many thoughts with the hopes that I will be able to make something more to send from where yarn is more obtainable, in pretty colors and that will come in as soon as navigation opens. If you have any special preference as to what it will be, speak up as I am almost bold enough to tackle anything in the knitting line if you promise not to be too critical. The other is a petticoat I knitted for myself and only wore a very few times and which I shall not need "outside". We thot "Mother Harper" could put it to some good use and if you could manage to further it on its journey I would be a thousand times obliged to you - and be sure to tell her that it brings a heap of love from both of us. Also when Walter was talking to mother about me she asked him to let her have the size of my foot so that she could make me some slippers or moccasins. I am mighty happy about this and shall love to have them and am enclosing a pattern of my stockinged foot and she will know from that how large they should be.

Any mail sent to 155 E. Walnut Lane, Germantown, Philadelphia, Pa. will always reach us. That is father's house and will be our headquarters until we can have some definite plans of our own - in other words until after the war. Now please Margaret be good to us and write often as we will always look for letters with the Tanana post mark and will try to be good too and see that you get a good share marked "Philadelphia" and always remember that Philadelphia is a good place to shop and that I will always be mighty happy to do anything and everything in my power to make it easy for you to get things by "personal shopper" methods etc.


Frances and Walter

even if the latter is snoring on the bed over yonder!

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