Manuscripts/Mixed Material Letter from Eliza Symonds Bell to Alexander Graham Bell, May 31
My dear Aleck,
Your anxiously expected letter has at length arrived. It was foolish of you to raise our curiosity and expectation— without satisfying it, and wrong to allow half a week to elapse afterwards without giving us a notion of the mystery. It is well we did not build a very high structure on the importance of the great news, or we should have been more tantalized than we were. Two nights ago— I dreampt you were at home— and that I said “Aleck, what is your astonishing news? ”You lifted your upper lip and showed me that all your “teeth were gone! ! Curious this— since” the News” really does relate to the grinding of food, and the grinders.
Your project may turn out a good one, but don't be sanguine. The only way to avoid being overcome by disappointment, is not to expect anything till you have it in your hand. Don't allow yourself to be excited about it. We hope all may turn out as you wish. With regard to the means of operation, which you tell us to guess at, I can only suppose the wheat is washed in some chemical which cracks the skin (when dry)— and causes it to rub off by friction. Papa shakes his head at my notion— but says nothing as yet as to his own. If the Hertman's do bring anything out of yours, I hope they will be just, because it is not always the inventor who reaps the benefit. The man who possesses money to carry a scheme into effect, generally sweeps off the returns. So remember my maxim and don't build too high.