We asked readers to tell us about pen pals they found through the Monitor's Mail Bag column, which ran from 1929 to 1969. Here are some excerpts from a few of your responses.
When I was in high school during the late 1930s, I had a friend who had a pen pal she had gotten from the Monitor Mail Bag. Her pen pal had a friend who wanted a pen pal, too. And so began my long relationship with Jean from Australia.
We wrote during our high school years, comparing our school and church experiences, our activities, our families, etc. I was in the glee club; Jean was a dancer, and she and her boyfriend danced in shows and competitions. We often sent each other little gifts, told each other about our countries and our travels when we went on vacation, and answered each other's questions.
I went on to college and, as I recall, Jean had some further schooling, and she and her boyfriend continued to dance.
I was married in 1946 after World War II, and if I remember correctly, Jean was married about the same time. We both had children and, of course, shared pictures.
Then, in 1972, I had the opportunity to go with friends to Australia. What an exciting moment when Jean and I met at last!
In the 1980s, my husband and I were in Australia on a lecture tour. Jean had passed on, but her husband and I had kept in touch. So we met him for a short visit.
I treasure the memories of my Mail Bag friendship.
We shared experiences through high school and college and continued our correspondence through marriage and as we had children and grandchildren.
Due to my husband's work, we lived overseas for 17 years, and my pen pal and her family lived in several Midwestern states, so we never had an opportunity to meet until about five years ago when we were both widows.
Thank you for bringing us together. It was a rewarding friendship.
La Cañada, Calif.