October 22, 1953

Eunice Ott

Eunice Ott

Missionary with the Evangelical Alliance Mission

[Transcriber’s note: The first half of this letter is a typewritten “form” letter in which Eunice handwrote the recipient’s name, and the remaining half is handwritten and personalized.]

22nd October 1953

Dear Gladys,

It is one of these again.  Anyway it was good to get some letters from some of you recently.  It is now time for me to go to bed but I decided that it would be best that I do this first.  These days are very hot so one is finished by the time ten o’clock comes around.  It is not so terribly hot at night so I manage to sleep O.K.

We are looking forward to the finish of school for this year.  The kids have a terrible time to keep awake in my afternoon classes these days.  I just keep yapping away up in front of them hoping that they get it.

Last week the Dunkelds, Orla Blair, and Martin Uppendahl were here for Field Committee meeting so we got a little visiting done, too.  We are getting many new missionaries and the big problem is where to put them for the time being while they get the language and catch on to sayings somewhat.  We had special meetings each night two weeks ago with my school.  We had an evangelist from Inga’s mission come.  It was quite good.  We had a big meeting over the week-end with the village people.  There were oodles of school boys present from the out schools.

I am trying to get teachers lined up for our school next year.  It is a big job as so few want to do that.  They get some other queer ideas in their head and that is that.  We do haVE SOME GOOD BOYS finishing their schooling this year.  Some have said that they want to teach.  It is a vital part of our work.  Without them we could not carry on.  (Sorry, I didn’t mean for those big letters to be written back there.)

For those who may not have heard, I had a very nice holiday in August and I saw lots of Rhodesia.  It is true I don’t go often but when I do I usually get a good break.  I may go in for a few days in December with Marie.  Effie will be moving to another station in December.  I shall miss her a lot.  Mary will be getting back here sometime in January.

The next day:

It is hot but not quite as hot as yesterday.  I have just finished my morning classes and have an hour or so before my afternoon ones begin.  I must get something to eat soon.  I usually have some sort of salad.  We have quite a lot of cabbage but not much else from the garden.  My chickens lay quite well, too, so I have all of the eggs which I want to use.  I am trying to get some old hens to set but it seems that I have a very hard time to do it.  Some kid is outside here wanting me this very moment.  They always get so impatient.

Our big Dodge truck which belongs to the Mission caught on fire yesterday when Warren had it after poles.  He had a bunch of school kids with him and without them it would have been a goner.  He had a sack somewhere under the floorboard to keep  some heat from somewhere coming up into the cab, and there was a short and the sack caught on fire.  We discovered that and quick yanked the sack out.  Then he went on his way thinking that that was the end of the fire as he could see nothing but he soon saw that the lining of the door was ablaze and he had shot-gun shells, important papers, and money in there besides other junk.  I guess there looked like there was fire everywhere.  They got the shells, etc., out of the pocket and they managed after a struggle to get the fire out.

[Typewritten letter concludes here.  Remaining letter is handwritten and personalized.]

I don’t know if you can read the above or not but anyway the page is full.  It was nice to hear from you and to hear something about yourselves.  I don’t see how Clarence can do all of that but then he has more brains than I have.  The Southern Baptist gang in this colony are sure a whiff of America.  They are worse than we for having it written all over us.  I can’t say that for all of their training, etc.  They are too clever in how they are going about their work.  It is the talk of all who know them.  They are a nice bunch of kids but as missionaries they have a few things to learn.  I met them when on holiday.  The man who began the work is from the South Africa General Mission.  He decided that he didn’t care about their method of baptism and so he left them and began this work of the Baptists.  Now he has been home for a year and in the meantime these kids from the South have been having their fling.  Mr. Dotson is a wonderful man and very good but he is alone in experience so it makes it hard.  However, the one couple besides himself and the two single girls seem to be very good, but the rest – whew!  Their homes the natives call hotels.  They are even more swanky than the city homes in this country.  Anyway they are struggling along with mushroom growth and no experience.  So that’s your missionaries.  They will learn.

Inga seems very happy where she is now.  That is where Mr. Dotson was before.  I enjoyed my visit with her.

We have had a busy term this term.  The government inspector  was here and looked our school over from head to foot.  He gave us both good and bad criticism.  The Southern Baptists have a school, too.  The girl in charge was asking me all sorts of questions.  It must be very hard for her.

How are all the girls?  I’m glad they like the north.  Yes, I think, too, that it would be better if Mom farmed her land out but I don’t say anything as I don’t know the lay of things.  I hope that they got the corn taken care of.  I’m sure she has a heavy load.  It is a worry, I’m sure, with Pa that way and not knowing what a day will bring forth.  I suppose Jim is learning lots these days.  How does Larry seem to be doing?  Has he changed?  Greetings to the family.


The Mission’s Dodge truck

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