Thursday, February 6, 2014

Jessie Luther | Providence, R.I., 1916

In Retrospect

Another important event for all of us is associated with that year [1911]. This was romance, the marriage of Dr. Little and Ruth Keese after three years of happy association. They were married by Mr. Jesse Halsey at the assistant doctor’s house, and the union of two persons so beloved by everyone was hailed with joy. The wedding was one of the simplest and most beautiful I ever witnessed, just a small gathering of friends brought together informally in the little room decorated with spruce boughs and yellow-leaved birch branches. Ruth Keese, in her familiar blue linen gown, and Dr. Little, in well known tweeds, entered the house together and after chatting with guests came forward with joined hands to stand before Mr. Halsey when he entered in his clerical gown to perform the short ceremony. In the dining room Mrs. Grenfell had prepared a beautiful table for the wedding feast, to which all members of the staff contributed. Then, after congratulations and best wishes to the newlyweds, we left them.

Each of these four summers would in detail be a story in itself, not only because of incidents but personalities closely interwoven with them. In addition to those who already made the background, there were others. Mr. Jesse Halsey, only briefly mentioned at the end of my second year, was a Presbyterian minister who came for a year of volunteer service not only to give spiritual guidance but to install plumbing, a shining example of practical Christianity who dressed in overalls for emergencies and donned his clerical down when occasion required.

from Jessie Luther at the Grenfell Mission, an annotated edition of a travel journal that Luther wrote from 1906 to 1910, edited by Ronald Rompkey (2001)

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