• President Wilson's Daughter, First Lady, Suffragette Margaret Needs Rest

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    MARGARET WILSON (1866-1944) was the eldest daughter of President Woodrow Wilson and a noted opera singer.  After her mother’s death in 1914, Margaret served her father as the White House social hostess, a title that later became known as first lady.  Her father remarried in 1915. Margaret was the second first lady to support suffrage for women, an action that paid off as her father announced support for a constitutional amendment allowing women to vote, which was ultimately key to its success.  Helen Taft was the first.

     Offering a 2 1/2 pp, 5 1/2 x 8, TLS on White House stationary, n.d., Waterford, Conn.  Wilson served from 1913 to 1921. Comes with the postal cover from The White House and a red two-cent stamp and WATERFORD CONN postal cancellation.

    Writing to Oliver P. Newman of Washington, DC, Wilson states, “Dear Mr. Newman, I did not see your letter until last night as I have been away for a rest. My voice gave out because, I confess, I overworked it. In my enthusiasm at being able to work again, I used it too much, and so when I saw that it needed a rest I went to Williamstown to see my sister. You should see her babies! The little girl is going to look like Mother, I think. But I did not sit down to write to you about Jessie's babies. I am afraid that I am going to develop into a doting old maid aunt.

    “When I came back here from Shadow Lawn I found that both Mrs. David and I had made a mistake about the date of my next concert, that it was not to be until November, but as my dear Aunt was ill at the time, I could not make any plans and so I let my letter to you stand. Then your letter came and I realized that the celebration had not yet come off. I consulted with Mr. David about my going down to it. He begged me not to say that I had said I would not one thing at a time and not mix music with civic center activity.

    “This morning I spoke to him again telling him that the celebration was not to be until later.  He again begged me to stick it out here. After thinking it over for myself and worrying a bit too, I confess for I have qualms of conscience about sticking only to the thing I love. I decided that he is right that I must stick it out here for a while longer.  Another cold is preventing work now but when it goes I must work hard again only stopping for rest and not speeches. These dreadful colds!  I expect you wish with me that the doctors would find some way of killing the little devils that cause them. They just make me grind my teeth with impatience!

    “I am awfully glad you helped at the headquarters.

    “For heaven’s sake do not think that you have to answer my letters much less apologize when you do write for not writing before.

    “I am awfully ashamed of having bothered you with such a long letter, but really it is not as long as it seems for you see I used a double spacer.

    “I am very happy over Father's promise to speak later at the Park View school. I am really extremely sorry that I cannot be in Washington for the twentieth.

    “With my real regards,

    “Faithfully yours,

    “Margaret Wilson."

    A range of personal commentary on White House stationery from Woodrow Wilson's eldest daughter, social hostess and de facto first lady.

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