This Valentine’s day, there’s no better way to express your feelings than in an original handwritten love letter. If you’re not feeling poetic, skip the “roses are red, violets are blue,” but do make it personal with your handwriting and a pretty piece of paper.
Handwritten love letters have connected people for generations. Some of the most famous love letters include notes from (and to) noted actors, authors and artists, such as Marlene Dietrich, Ernest Hemingway, Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera.
Handwriting adds a personal touch to your message, and it can turn your love letter into a historical heirloom. John Adams, the second president of the United States, exchanged more than 1,000 letters with his wife, Abigail Smith Adams, during their courtship, after their marriage and well into his political career.
From his salutations (“Miss Adorable”) to his closings (“Yours most tenderly”), John Adams shared his feelings for his wife, as well as his commentary on current world affairs.
In 1764, he wrote to her: “My soul and body have both been thrown into disorder by your absence, and a month or two more would make me the most insufferable cynick (sic) in the world. … But you who have always softened and warmed my heart shall restore my benevolence as well as my health and tranquility of mind.”
Fast forward more than 150 years to President George H.W. Bush. He enjoyed sending handwritten notes to people; in fact, it was his preferred method of communication.
He also wrote many letters to Barbara Pierce, whom he would later marry. In December 1943, he sent a handwritten love letter to his “darling Bar”: “I love you, precious, with all my heart and to know that you love me, means my life. How often I have thought about the immeasurable joy that will be ours some day.”