Mary and Anna Lawrence

Mary Bowne Lawrence (left)

and Anna Louise Lawrence (right)

Mary Bowne Lawrence (1830-1898), the second cousin four times removed of my wife,  married Henry Augustine Bogert (1827-1905). Mary was close to her sister Anna Louise (1834-1908).

On July 19, 1870 she wrote this letter to Anna:

Dear Anna,

God has taken my beautiful baby – Frank died this morning at 4 o’clock. He was sick only two nights and one day, commenced on Saturday night with a slight diarrhea which seemed checked Sunday morning, but returned Sunday afternoon…I thought the disease controlled, but his head became affected last night he suffered greatly with his head until death released him.

I need not tell you how great the shock, you have gone through the same trouble dear, and know that death never comes to us thus, in our children without bitter pain, even while we own God’s love and wisdom in all his doings.

I felt so safe about little Frank because he had so good a wet nurse. He had grown so beautiful and seemed so well I scarcely dreaded the summer, but this intense heat and teething were too much for him.

I feel that everything was done that could be, for Mrs. Pettit and Maggie and I watched him carefully, but God willed it, and just one year from the time of his last summer’s sickness, God took him to Himself.

I have four darlings now in Heaven. How blessed to know them safe. I do not think I am a very good manager with children, so God takes some of them to bring up for me and in Heaven they will be mine forever. I wondered how I should manage with three babies next winter. God has answered the doubt for me, tho not quite in the way I would have chosen.

It is so hard to look forward to bringing more children into the world only to see them die.

The other children are well, and I hope your little ones are too.

You sent me a little note of your safe arrival. Do, if you can, write me some particulars and why you staid at Worcester instead of Centre Harbor.

Dear Anna, life has many trials for all of us; let us not receive them in a bitter spirit, but as Christians walk humbly with God receiving all things from His hands, remembering that in another world we shall see clearly the reasons for much that now appears mysterious.

May God give you Grace, dear, to bear and forbear until this life shall merge into the better one above.

Your loving sister,


Frank (July 11, 1869 – July 19, 1870) was Mary’s ninth child.


Leave a Comment