Ellen G. White Writings

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Ellen G. White: The Progressive Years: 1862-1876 (vol. 2), Page 341

Chapter 23—(1872) A Surprise Vacation in the Rocky Mountains

Early Sunday morning, June 23, 1872, Ellen White wrote from her hideaway home in Washington, Iowa, to her longstanding friend in Greenville, Michigan, Mrs. Maynard: “We leave today for California. My husband and myself need rest.... Next Sabbath we expect, if the Lord prospers us, to be in Santa Rosa.”—Letter 1, 1872. The Whites did not reach California, however, until Friday afternoon, September 27, fourteen weeks later.

They had planned to attend most of the western camp meetings (Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Minnesota), and then join J.N. Loughborough in California for a camp meeting to be held in late September. But when the Iowa meeting closed, they saw that to carry out their plan in their state of health, the strain would be greater than they could bear. After a few days’ rest, they decided to go at once, thinking to arrive in California in late June. They had to have some rest.

With travel plans flexible, they started out, taking with them 17-year-old Willie, who had now joined them in Iowa, and Mrs. Lucinda Hall. Lucinda, 33 years of age and the daughter of Ira Abbey, was a widow; she had been Ellen's closest friend for twenty years. They stopped briefly at Civil Bend, Missouri, where the church needed help, and there decided to make another stop at Ottawa, Kansas, where Ellen White's oldest sister, Caroline Clough, lived. They arrived at the Clough home Tuesday, July 2, thinking to remain for two days. It had been twenty-five years since the two sisters had been together, and the reunion was a happy one.

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