Saturday, July 12, 2008

Della's Circle of Friends - Post 2

I started transcribing Della (Smith) Carringer's autograph book from 1877-1882 yesterday in my post Della's Circle of Friends - Post 1. The balance of the autographs by Della's friends are in this post.

Della's Autograph book is a small (4 inches wide, 2.5 inches high, 0.30 inch thick) book with a cover that has the following inscriptions (on hand numbered pages, a / means a line change):

Page 38: "To Dellie / Jan 11th 1878 / Labors of duty, / Missions of love, Will win thee a blessing, / From Heaven above. / Your Schoolmate / Ida E. Prince."

Page 42: "Your Friend, / Arnold Samuels / Moline / Ill."

Page 44: "To Della, / 'Do the duty that lies / nearest thee.' / J.A. Shilborn / Apr 24 1878 / Concordia Kan."

Page 46: "To Della, / 'Aim at the highest prise. If there thou fail, / Thou'll haply reach to noe not far below.' / Your friend, / Lucy." [ "Cambell" in Della's writing]

Page 47: "Della / What ever your lot in life may be /Above all things remember me. / Truly. / Jo. Park / Mankato Ks Feby 24th 1882"

Page 48: "Miss Della Smith / Dear Friend / 'To live in hearts we leave behind / Is not to die.' / Your loving friend and schoolmate / Matie Dana / Concordia, Kansas / Jan. 8th 1878"

Page 49: On the left side: "May the angles ever guard you / Is the wish of your cousin." In the top right corner: "When / you are / lonely think / of these letters & / study them as they / may become of great ad- / vantage to you in future." In the bottom right corner: "You / have a sad / looking picture / in the album." Top center has a pasted face from a magazine and "My photo."

Page 50: "Dellie, / When you are perusing this / volume and your eye chances / to rest upon this page may / it remind you of our visit - / at Omio, and the pleasant / times we had while there. / May you also remember the / negro minstrels, and those beautiful / strains of chin-music which only / you would know how to appreciate / But above all do not forget / your cousin. / Ada Redfield / Omio, Kan. / 6-28-1881"

Page 52: "To Della: / I only ask this little spot / To write these words, forget-me-not. / Ever your friend. / Dora J. Allen. / May 29, 1882"

Page 56: "To Della. / We will bind our friendship / With a golden chain / And give the key to God. / Your loving friend / Ella R. Hall."

Page 58: "To Dellie, / Your friend and schoolmate: / Florence A. Smith / Concordia, / Kansas"

Page 63: "Otis N. Smith / Concordia / cloud Co / Kansas / April 25th 1878."

Page 66: "To Dellie, / May your life be always blest / With friends selected from the best. / Is the wish of your sister / Matie Smith / Concordia Kansas."

Page 67: "To Dellie / Sweet are the joys of home / And pure as sweet, for they / Like dew of morn and evening come / To make and close they day./ Your friend / Fannie / January 11 1878"

Page 74: "A. Mackley / Concordia / Kansas / Oct 16 - 81"

Some of the inscriptions are in pencil, and some in pen, and some are very faint.

Della was born in 1862, so she was age 15 when she received this autograph book as a Christmas gift from her mother, Abbie A. (Vaux) Smith. She had her mother, brother and sister sign it, but not her father (too bad - I don't think I have Devier Smith's autograph). Many friends and schoolmates signed it in 1878, and several signed it after that. Several people from other cities signed it over the years also. Della's cousin, Ada Redfield, lived in Belleville in Republic county around 1880, and they met in Omio in Jewell County in 1881.

Other family papers indicate that Della's family moved to McCook, Red Willow County, Nebraska in 1885, and Della married to Henry Austin Carringer in September 1887 in Wano, Cheyenne County, Kansas.

If any reader wants a scan of a specific page from this autograph book, please contact me at

No comments: