In a letter dating back to 1898, student Grace Gibson, feeling homesick, pleads with her mother to let her come back home. She wrote, “Dear Momma, please let me come home. I cried myself to sleep last night. The tears are in the corner of my eyes ready to drop at a moment’s notice. Oh Momma, you know I can’t bear such lonesome solitude as this, you let me come home right now and I will never say I dislike Centerville [Grace’s hometown] again.
We had chicken, or rather a tough rooster, with gravy that resembled slop, and rice without either sugar or milk—and one little sweet potato that nearly broke my heart for, Momma, you know how I love them. When I get home I won’t have any tears for I have shed a gallon of water. …”
Before being mailed off, the letter was intercepted by Grace’s schoolmate Ella Hodgson. Ella wrote a note above the letter’s greeting line that evokes the sense of community still engrained in the college today. Ella wrote to Grace’s mother, “Don’t let Grace come home. She will be alright in a few days. She has the blues now. I’ll take care of her. …”
Not only did Grace graduate from the seminary in 1902, she had a long career as a teacher.