James B. Green letters  1892-1893
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Collection Scope and Content Note

This collection contains 14 letters and partial letters by James B. Green of Des Moines, Iowa, to Cora Earley, a female friend in Prattsburgh, New York, between July 1892 and April 1893. His casual, flirtatious, and occasionally crude letters include remarks on social news about mutual friends in Prattsburgh, relationships between men and women, and his life in Des Moines.

Green wrote these 2- to 4-page letters on stationery from the S. Green & Sons Iron Foundry and Stove Works, where he worked with his father and brother, Samuel and Frank Green. Though he occasionally mentioned the local furnace industry and the price of goods in Des Moines, most of his letters focus on mutual acquaintances and social news from Prattsburgh. Green reminisced about playing ball with his friends. He often commented on aspects of relationships between men and women, such as a broken engagement and his own dating life. Some letters discuss the possibility of Green's return to Prattsburgh, as well as his feelings about the town and its people.

Green often addressed his correspondent as "you little sinner." The following excerpt from Green's letter of November 13, 1892, is typical of his colloquial writing style and content. It also contains a reference to Grover Cleveland's second election.

"Well you little sinner How are you coming? 'Regular and 4 in a hill' I suppose. 'Hurrah for Cleavland' He is the man I would have voted for. Well Cora how is every thing down to Uncle Joe Briggs? You bet I remember the night you and the rest of the gang was down. What kind of a girl is that Mabel Rose? I have heard a good deal about her? Would like to get out with her some night and find out for myself. No Cora I will never forget that night down to Martha's. more sport than a wash tub full of monkies. Would like to have to go through it again to night. You can bet Cora I would keep you awake."

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