Collecting,  General Info,  Presentation/Appearance,  Social,  Thomas Gray Haile subcollection

With love and best wishes

Thomas Gray Haile subcollections, cards 32, 2, 44, 50

Time for some more cards from Madge! First up, some flowers. You wouldn’t notice, since I’m sharing the cards here in the order they were posted, but the flower cards were bunched together. Ditto other topics. The collector(s) whose album contained these cards was one of many who may have collected in part based on subject. I can’t say for certain whether they sought out specific subjects as the album had a fair range–but they most definitely arranged most by subject.

violets in a hanger
Madge [unknown] to Thomas Haile, 29 June 1908

The inscription on the reverse is fairly tame for Madge.

June 29.08 How are you? Hope you got home all right. Have just received your card will expect a letter tomorrow. There is a party at Mr. Suttons tonight and I’m going wish you were here, Write soon

Madge [unknown] to Thomas Haile, 29 June 1908

Again, references to their multi-modal correspondence through cards and letters. A little information on Madge’s social life. Missing him. No reminder for him to be good this time. Hmm.

Then we have this one. For some reason, I mis-transcribed the postmark as August but now I believe it belongs back in among the April cards. If you remember (anyone who’s actually read these in order), that’s when word reached Tom about Madge having possibly been not quite so good …

The image refers to the year being leap year–and possibly the superstition in some places that social conventions among various groups of white citizens that in leap years women can ask men to marry them (there are a lot of postcards that mock that notion!). It also implicitly affirms devotion.

I’ve included the reverse. As you can see, it’s in quite bad condition and illegible in places. The parts I can read (sort of) mention her feeling sad because he’s mad. I think she tells him to be good and she will to. There’s also a reference to “have diserved such” but don’t ask me who or what, and she ends saying she’ll bear it–presumably his anger or disappointment?

Leaping several months into their future, we have this one sent in October. More flowers.

assorted flowers against brick background
Madge [unknown] to Thomas Haile, 21 October 1908

They’re on good enough terms that they’re exchanging multiple cards. He’s sent her two (possibly on the same day or one caught up with the other in delivery). Perhaps one is a real photo postcard given her reference to his possibly being in a picture. The bit of byplay about him having something to tell her suggests the April issue is fairly well behind them (or not?)

Hello.–Received Two cards from you tonight. the first in along time. were you in that picture? I mailed you a letter last Friday and have written so many cards I am ashamed, I’m simply crazy to know what that is you have to tell me but I [won’t?] know you will forget it before you see me. be good . . . . now please don’t forget what you said you had to tell me

Madge [unknown] to Thomas Haile, 21 October 1908

And for the last card today–what is the Bachelor’s Dream? Any guess? Here’s one interpretation:

A young man sitting in a chair at a table smoking and blowing circles of smoke.
[unknown] to Thomas Haile, 30 November 1908

This could be from Madge–but she usually signed her cards and this has no signature. I’m not convinced the handwriting is hers. That said, it’s not impossible to imagine that she wrote these lines. The card was postmarked Gainesville, TN, which is where she mailed most of hers.

Hope you enjoyed your vacation Sun especially Heard you had good time suppose you did Come back Friday and will have sweet time

[unknown] to Thomas Haile, 30 November 1908

And that’s all for this week. We’ve got about 17 cards left sent to Thomas Haile, including at least five signed by Madge, and then I’ll move on to an album I haven’t processed yet but am quite looking forward to doing so.

“With love and best wishes,” copyright 2021 Alea Henle.

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