Old Soldiers Still Can Love Young Women-A Confederate Soldier's Home Tale

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Pat Young

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
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Here is an interesting story from Rusty Williams, a scholar of Confederate soldiers' homes, on the home in Oklahoma.

http://myoldconfederatehome.blogspot.com/2011/07/love-at-first-sight.html

The home admitted Confederate veterans and the widows of Confederate soldiers, but made no provision for the two groups to fall in love. When 68 year old William H. Stoneburner and 66 year old Annie Bolling got involved with each other they approached the superintendent seeking permission to marry in 1912. The super kicked the question upstairs to the President of the Home who wrote this letter to his subordinate:

“I appreciate fully that ‘love at first sight’ is a heartrending malady, and many foolish young folks laboring under the apprehension that it is the real thing awake the cold gray dawn of the morning after and find that it was a mirage. In a case of this kind we must allow some latitude for youth and inexperience, and while love must have its fling, I am fully cognizant of the fact that these young folks are full of ginger and the vigor of youth and that their minds are fully made up.

Have they been properly advised by their ‘elders’? Have they been made to realize that the ‘new’ may someday wear off? Have they been told by the proper persons that affairs of this kind often result in the propagation of children which have to be raised, schooled and otherwise cared for?

If I can have your word that you will whisper good counsel in their ears, I will very cheerfully join you in bestowing my blessing on their gay young heads and wishing them many happy returns of their joyous wedding day.

I believe it would be a splendid idea not to delay the day as the suspense must be something awful to their aching young hearts. I also hereby appoint and constitute you my lawful and personal representative and authorize you to kiss the bride.”

Williams writes:


Mrs. Bolling and Mr. Stoneburner were married a week later at a ceremony on the front porch of the Oklahoma Confederate Home.
 
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