Letters Philip Treat Woman Charlie Shedd

Letters Philip Treat Woman Charlie Shedd

Letters Philip Treat Woman Charlie Shedd

Section Content

The letters exchanged between Philip and Charlie reveal a deep and complex relationship that developed over an extended period of time. These letters are not only fascinating as historical artifacts but also as literary documents that capture the attitudes and personalities of both individuals. This article aims to explore the various themes and motifs present in these letters, offering insight into the social and cultural context in which they were written.


Philip Treat was a young student studying literature in the early twentieth century. He met Charlie Shedd, a woman from his hometown, and the two formed a close friendship that became a romantic relationship. The letters exchanged between them span a period of several years, from 1915 to 1918, and encompass the outbreak of World War I and its aftermath.

Themes and Motifs

One of the most prominent themes in the letters is that of love and longing. Philip and Charlie express their feelings for each other in passionate and poetic language, revealing a deep emotional connection. However, their love is also tinged with sadness and frustration, as they are often unable to be together due to distance and other circumstances.

Another recurring motif is that of literature and poetry. Both Philip and Charlie were passionate about reading and writing, and they often discussed their favorite authors and works in their letters. They also frequently included their own original poems and stories, demonstrating their skill and creativity as writers.

The letters also touch on broader social and political issues of the time, such as the war and its impact on society. Philip expresses his pacifist beliefs and sadness at the loss of life, while Charlie writes about the changing roles of women and the challenges they faced in a rapidly changing world.

Personality and Attitudes

The letters offer a fascinating insight into the personalities and attitudes of both Philip and Charlie. Philip comes across as a sensitive and intelligent young man, deeply committed to his studies and passionate about literature. He is also highly introspective and reflective, often questioning his own feelings and beliefs.

Charlie, on the other hand, is a strong and independent woman who is not afraid to challenge social conventions and expectations. She is fiercely intelligent and well-read, and her letters are full of witty observations and insightful commentary on a wide range of topics.

Both Philip and Charlie are deeply empathetic individuals, reflecting on the suffering and struggles of others, whether it be soldiers at war or women fighting for their rights. They also share a profound love for each other, expressed in tender and passionate language that is often quite moving.

Evolution of Their Relationship

The letters reveal a relationship between Philip and Charlie that is complex and multifaceted. They start off as close friends, sharing their passion for literature and engaging in lively debates and discussions. As time goes on, however, their friendship deepens and becomes more romantic, as they confess their love for each other and dream of a future together.

However, distance and other circumstances often stand in their way, causing frustration and sadness. While their love remains strong, their relationship goes through periods of strain and doubt, as they struggle to stay connected in the midst of the tumultuous events of the time.

Nevertheless, through all the highs and lows of their relationship, the letters offer a touching and inspiring portrait of two individuals who are deeply committed to each other and to their shared values and interests.

Historical Context

The letters between Philip and Charlie were written during a time of great unrest and change in the world. The outbreak of World War I had a profound impact on both individuals, as they grappled with the horror and tragedy of the conflict. They also lived through a time of significant social and cultural change, as women began to assert their rights and voices in new and powerful ways.

The letters are a valuable primary source for understanding the social and cultural context of the early twentieth century, offering a window into the thoughts and feelings of two young people experiencing a world in flux.

Significance as Historical Artifacts

The letters between Philip and Charlie are not only valuable for their literary and emotional content, but also as historical artifacts that offer insight into a particular time and place. They are a valuable resource for historians and scholars interested in understanding the social and cultural context of the early twentieth century, particularly in the United States.

The letters also offer a glimpse into the lives and experiences of ordinary people, highlighting the ways in which individuals were impacted by broader societal and historical forces. They are a reminder that history is not just about grand events and important figures, but also about the everyday experiences and emotions of ordinary people.


The letters between Philip and Charlie offer a fascinating and insightful window into the lives of two individuals who lived through a time of great change and upheaval. They reveal a deep and complex relationship, full of passion, love, and longing. They also offer valuable insight into the social and cultural context of the early twentieth century, and are a valuable resource for historians and scholars alike.