Monday, April 23, 2012

Miscellany Monday - The Handwritten Word

Miscellany Monday @
lowercase letters

When was the last time you got a handwritten letter in the mail?

Do you remember the excitement of opening the mailbox or post office box and seeing a letter addressed to you?

I remember those days of long-distance courtship when not many days passed without either sending or receiving a letter from my soon-to-be hubby.  We kept every letter that passed between us.  Also, my mother kept every beautiful letter she received from my father.  He had the prettiest handwriting and was so romantic.

My sisters and I treasure these letters because they reveal a side of our parent's great love for each other that we never knew - that early budding love between two young adults.

Has this day passed?

Do you remember those days in school when we wrote notes to each other and hoped the teacher didn't catch us passing them around?  I remember the excitement of seeing who they were from and sometimes being disappointed.  I could never quite master the art of intricate folding patterns like some of my friends.  Now, the kids just text and don't worry about folding or getting caught.  But neither do they have special notes stored away for safe keeping.

 Several years ago when going through some old books that had belonged to my father, I found these handwritten documents and transactions dating back to the mid 1800's.  Does anyone write like this anymore?  Do children even learn to write in cursive these days?  What a lost art!

Another of my treasures is a letter my dad wrote to our two children when they were very young.  My parents had kept our children for a couple weeks while we were out of the country.  Even though the children were much too young to understand what their Papa wrote, they understood the love that was expressed for them.  It is something they can pass down to their children someday.

I keep these two precious notes from our two oldest grandchildren because they are expressions of love and the act of being grateful.

Is it too late to instill this seemingly lost art of handwriting letters in this new generation?  I sure hope not.  What will they have to treasure and share from boxes and trunks one of these days - email print outs?  Maybe.


  1. I do believe the art of a handwritten note is a lost art form. I can't remember the last time I got a handwritten letter in the mail. My Mom always sends eloquent thank you cards if that counts? Your Dad seemed like a writer - you must get your gift from him. Love that you kept the letters from your parents. It almost seems as if you could turn them into a book! xo

  2. I still love sending and receiving handwritten mail. Although I did not grow up in a denomination that practiced 'giving something up' for Lent this year I decided I was going to send a letter to someone every day of the 40 days.

    Several of these letters were simple thank yous to people who serve in roles that don't always get a thanks, some were to older family members who I know love getting mail and then an assortment of others. It has inspired me to write at least one letter a week!

  3. I love handwritten notes and letters. So special. On my blog I started a snail mail swap to write letters to each other.

    Hope your having a good day!

  4. i don't hand write letters enough. it really is something to be treasured. thanks for encouraging me to do so.
    : )

  5. I still love to send notes to people. But email sure makes it easier but will never replace the excitement of getting a letter through the mail!

    I have a stack of "love" letters from my hubby that he wrote me while serving in the military the fall before we married in 1971. I wouldn't trade them for anything!

    Libby, you have a lovely blog!!

  6. Libby, I absolutely love browsing your blog - beautifully written words from a grateful heart! And the photos are priceless. You are truly blessed with adoring grandchildren and I know they bring you so much joy! You bring out the real meaning of living life to its fullest. Thank you for sharing with us so we can enjoy your experiences, too. I also enjoyed the spectacular photos made on your walking trip ... I think I'm coveting! :-)

  7. Hello! I am one of those few people who writes with a quill pen and ink. I use the 19th century style cursive for my letters and journal entries. Cursive writing is so uncommon that when I am writing a letter or making a journal entry, people will comment "I love your calligraphy!" They are surprised when I tell them it is not calligraphy but cursive handwriting. I am trained as a teacher with an MA in Education and I can tell you that cursive is no longer taught in schools. Many a college instructor has told me that quite a few of their students cannot read cursive on the blackboard let alone write it. The founding documents for the USA specifying our rights and freedoms are written in cursive and many of the present generation of school children and the ones in future generations will not be able to read the documents of the Founding Fathers of this country


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