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Henry and Effie Osborn at home

Henry and Effie Osborn

Harry wrote on a number of topics, including Effie’s friendship with Ada, his lot in life, and the music he’d had bound. He also urged Effie to take a look at Japanese Homes and Their Surroundings by Edward S. Morse (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_S._Morse).

In her first letter, Effie wrote mainly about their blues. The second covered her continued grief for her cousin Minnie’s death, her belief that Harry made the right decision in going back to Purdue, and her mother’s feelings about the possible job opportunities at Purdue.

“Darling I did for once just what you wanted without being told.” Osborn, Henry 1886-1-21

“I was sure the watch was right last night for I took particular pains with it yesterday to be sure it was right, & if it wasn’t right, the corner clock was the only clock that I saw yesterday that was correct.” Osborn, Effie 1886-1-21a

“Servants cant be treated decently for they never appreciate it, and always take advantage of you, if you try to be considerate of them and make things easy and pleasant for them.” Osborn, Effie 1886-1-21b



The University Archives at Hamline University collects and preserves university records, publications, photographs, audio recording, moving images, artifacts, and other materials from the university’s early days in Red Wing to its present in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

The Henry L. Osborn and Family Papers are owned by Hamline University and may not be published or extensively quoted without the written consent of the Hamline University Archives (Hamline University, 1536 Hewitt Avenue, Saint Paul, MN 55104; 651-523-2080; archives@hamline.edu).