Will and Bessie's Relationship
During their marriage, Will frequently declared his love for Bessie, addressing his letters “My own darling Bessie,” concluding them with “Ever yours, lovingly, Will,” and writing in between about how much he missed her when they were apart. However, he also showed insecurity and sought assurances of love from his young wife:
I can’t understand why you left me to live here all alone by myself. Were you tired of my society? Or did you want me to miss you and want you with me. I am very lonesome this evening and I want my blue eyed girl. Are you still my blue eyed brown haired girl like you used to be two years ago. You know you used to be my blue eyed girl and then all at once—you changed. Do you think you are the same blue eyed girl that you were when I was first engaged to you. Do you want me to consider you as such?
Just before a trip to see Bessie in Washington, Will wrote: “Are you going to be very happy to see me, and are you going to give me lots of hugs and kisses?” Bessie apparently did express desire to see Will, since he wrote: “I am just as anxious to see you as you are to see me, and I want you with me, I really need you very much as I am heartily tired of being alone.” On another occasion, he wrote: “You really miss me, do you darling? To tell you the honest truth you don’t really know what it is to miss any one. I miss you certainly a hundred times more than you do me.”
Return to The Hermitage in the 1890s