Years later Laura herself described her salvation to her minister writing, “In June, I heard Jesus speak down from his throne into my heart, before and after meeting an humble, devoted and Christian woman, in Vermont [Mrs. Palmer] for whom I had a glow of respect and love, because she appeared to have love to God and Jesus and was rich in faith.…My heart was opened by the hand of Jesus, and He illumined my heart with glory and light and grace. I beheld his face boldly, granting his Holy Word I felt my soul fall into his hands. My feelings were governed by the Spirit of God, and Jesus Christ. God taught me to pray and guided my heart in his way.” [iii]
This letter, written by Laura when she was 39, discusses the passing of her father, Daniel Bridgman, which occurred towards the end of November in 1868.
L.B. March 14th 1869
My very dear friend
A happy morn the beam of the sun is very brilliant & gladdening to my heart in my room. It is a blessed Sabbath that we should enjoy as far as possible. I presume that you are designed to go to church all day. Do you remember of writing & invited me while I was with my dear parents last summer. I shall be happy to accept the invitation if nothing occurs to prevent the visit in your cheerful home. I invite you to accompany me home if it is convenient for you to guide me. Julia takes the same cars going home near the house of my home I can go to the dep. with her you could meet me thereat. I will be much obliged to you for the trouble of procuring a ticket for my free trip immediately. There is not decision for a vacation yet. I shall look for a reply from you to this rather shortly & to know your plans. My dear Papa was released from all his suffering the last week of Nov. unto the throne of God. What a sad journey I shall take in his death. I cannot anticipate the enjoyment of being at home as high as before. My last sister is engaged to the last Brother of mine in law. So it seems to my poor heart like a broken home I am so anxious to go to my lonely Mother & comfort her. They seem so impatient to welcome her home. John & his wife live there. But they do not sit with Mama at all. Give my love to all folks. God bless you.
Your aff. friend, Laura
[ii] Ibid., 625-626.
[iii] Maud Howe, Laura Bridgman: Dr. Howe’s Famous Pupil and What He Taught Her (Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1903), p. 283.