Annie Sidwell to Jane Addams, October 23, 1906

College View, Neb.
Oct. 23. '06 (Sanitarium)

My Dear Jane:--

You may be surprised at this letter or like myself you may have reached a place where you cease to be surprised at anything.

I have two objects in writing this letter, one because I wish to make you acquainted with a little matter and secondly I wish you would write me a letter, when you have the time and strength and inclination. I have been sick for many months much of the time it appeared that I was living simply from one day to another and a very great many times even from one hour to another. About three weeks ago I made my will and my little home property which is pretty generally valued at $3000 I willed, in case there should be any money left to will, after the selling of the property, to Rockford College for scholarships to be given to [page 2] deserving girls unable to otherwise secure a college education. This money, according to the will, is to be turned over to you and used according to your discretion.

I have not walked a block since last January and my bills have been many and the expense is very great. I had saved a five-hundred dollars but that cannot last long. I have figured it out a great many times how much cheaper it would be to die and be buried. I know that I am a little better now than I was when brought here. Three good physicians gave up my case and said they could do no more for me as medicine had completely lost its effect.  They suggested my coming here to this sanitarium and trying a more natural method of cure by means of hydrotherapy, massage and electricity in different ways.  So here I am better as I said [page 3] for there was a time that my heart was so weak that I could not speak, could not feed myself, could scarcely see anything but light and darkness, could not sleep, was delirious, and temperature down to 96°.

I am now improving in these respects and can with the aid of the nurse take three or four steps. I have two nurses one each for day and night and can sometimes wear them both out.

I sit in a wheel chair all day and part of the night, since I am not able to lie down. I am wheeled out of doors an hour or more every day. But let me stop right here why should I write of such things to you, who are familiar with infinitely worse ones every hour in the day. I can never tell you how grieved I was on reaching the announcement of Miss Blaisdell's death, it seemed like a frightful dream and I felt as though the strongest [page 4] link in my life chain was broken. I am having the nurse write all this not for you to answer with a letter of condolence for I already receive many of those and many are the letters so kindly meant but actually give me a bit of the blues, but your life has such a [widening?] such that I thought if a little of it could be put into my own perhaps I would be much the better both in mind and spirit. I trust you have good health and that more good things than evil and more bright days than dark ones come into your busy self sacrificing life.

Good night  Love from

Annie Sidwell

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