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#1292: Willa Cather to Jesse Mattison, January 21, 1936

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⬩W⬩S⬩C⬩ Dear Mrs. Mattison1:

I don’t usually welcome namesakes very cordially, for the simple reason that I never liked my own first name. I never like feminine forms of masculine names, in fact. If I had ever known, when I first began to write, that my name would be printed about a good deal, I would certainly have changed it to Mary or Jane, or Janet. I could not have changed my real name, out of respect to my parents3: but I could have changed my writing name, and I often wish I had.

When I saw your little girl's4 pictures however, she seemed like such a real little person that I wanted to write to her and give her my good wishes. Perhaps she won’t dislike the name as much as I do.

Cordially yours,Willa Cather