Friday, June 3, 2022

Dear (blank),

Photo of the first page of fill-in-the-blank letter stationery

For a student in the 1890s, keeping in touch with friends and family back home could be a chore. But the busy Dartmouth student could dash off his letters a bit quicker with some fill-in-the-blank stationery. We have a sample of such stationery here, in the second of our four Stationery vertical files.

The form covers all of the basic letter-home content:

Dartmouth College, Hanover, N.H., 189 (blank)

Dear (blank),—

I have been very busy for the past (blank) with my studies and haven’t found time to answer your last letter before.

I am much interested in (blank)

The weather has been (blank)

I see by the paper (blank)

I shall be home in (blank) weeks and

You said in your last letter that (blank)

There has nothing new happened here and it’s getting late so I shall close.

Your (blank)

The form makes some fair assumptions: this letter will be arriving later than expected, the writer is either busy with studies or willing to lie about being busy with studies, and if anything more interesting than the weather has happened in Hanover, the writer doesn’t care to share.

To see this and more stationery used by the Dartmouth community over the years, visit Rauner and ask for the Stationery vertical files.