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Exhibits Relating to the Writing of The Desire of Ages - Contents
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    Exhibit 17—Tuesday, April 18, 1876, Oakland, California, Ellen White to James White

    Dear Husband: ... We went to the city Sunday night. I spoke to quite a large congregation of outsiders with acceptance. Taking up the subject of the loaves and fishes with which Jesus by His miraculous power fed about ten thousand people—five thousand men and women and five thousand children—that were continually collecting, after the Saviour had blessed the small portion of food; Christ walking on the sea and the Jews requiring a sign that He was the Son of God. The neighbor next to the church near the public garden was there. Cragg, I believe his name is. They all listened with wide open eyes, and some [with] open mouths. Mary says she feels provoked that she has written out that subject before she heard me speak upon it. She will now insert some living points she heard that night. She seemed deeply interested....ERWDA 13.9

    I see many subjects to write out which must be done with the greatest care. I want this summer, the whole of it, to do this work in. I must stop a day or two in the week and go somewhere or my head will break down. I begrudge every moment that I feel compelled to rest. These intensely interesting subjects weary me far more to write them out than to speak upon them.ERWDA 14.1

    I feel that it would not be advisable for me to break off now and go East. Mary does not feel inclined to go. Says she just despises the Eastern climate, but this would not prevent me if I could feel that it was my duty to go. I would feel pleased to meet my brethren and sisters in camp meeting. It is just such work as I enjoy. Much better than the confinement of writing. But this will break up my work and defeat the plans of getting out my books, for I cannot do both—travel and write. Now seems to be my golden opportunity. Mary is with me, the best copyist I can ever have. Another such chance may never be mine.ERWDA 14.2

    Letter 9, 1876, pp. 1, 3.