Hello everyone, this is Leah; Allen’s wife. Some of you may be wondering why I am posting from Allen’s page, but I felt that of those who know him will probably see it sooner here than on my own den page. I am posting it here in hope that Ed Matlack will see it since in his writings; Allen asked that I get a copy to Ed if I could. What I will be posting below are Allen’s writings that I merely transcribed from his travel notebook. I know lately he has been under a great deal of stress and I was beginning to become worried. However after reading his last entry on the den and how he has been acting here at home I was starting to worry, yet after finding his notebook in the woods almost two days ago my starting to worry has been replaced with definitely worried. He told me Saturday morning that he was going back down to that old bridge he found in the woods and write some more about it. I said that was fine and not to be too long. That was the last time I saw him….
He left very early that day and when he didn’t return at lunch time like he promised, I borrowed my mother’s car and went looking for him. When I arrived, I noticed our van parked in an old abandoned lot. A wave of relief swept over me since I then figured that he had just lost track of time. Needless to say I was really a little peeved that he would be so caught up in that old bridge that he would just completely forget about me. I pulled moms car up behind ours and got out. I made my way across the highway and over to the edge of the woods which led down to the old bridge. With each step towards that silly old bridge I became more irritated. Almost there, I stopped, listened and called out his name. Nothing came back in the way of a reply. Now my anger traded places again with worry…what if he fell what if he is hurt? What if….”Allen; Allen, where are you? Allen...My pace quickened until I reached the edge of the bridge and it was there that I found his notebook alongside his clothes. Surely he did not remove them in this weather. I searched and searched the area for over an hour without a single sign of him. Frustration, fear and anger swept over me. Where could he be?
I gathered his things together quickly and headed back to the car and then to the police station to report him missing. My emotions were running high and upon reaching the highway and I almost stepped into the path of a speeding car. The rush of air from the passing vehicle jarred me back from my almost catatonic state. Watching this time I stepped out into the road and made my way back to mom’s car. I tossed Allen’s clothes in the backseat and just sat there holding his notebook in my lap. Fear tore away at my heart and I wept softly as I opened the worn cover and thumbed through the pages. Near the back of the book I saw one that was dated 1/27/07. After reading the entries I became more confused than I was before. I closed the book and went strait away to the police station and filled out a missing persons report. The following text is Allen’s writings of this morning…..I hope that you can make more sense of this than I can…
July 27th 1895? Jan. 27th?
My dearest Leah, it is my hope that you will come looking for me and find this entry in my notebook. The further you read of this text the more you will understand; at least that is my hope. I know you may not believe this but this morning I found a small opening in whatever it was I passed through it to the other side. I know that you have no idea what I am talking about but it will become clearer later on, so please understand. Also if by chance you do find this, then please try to get a copy of this to Ed Matlack from the authorsden since he too is as intrigued as I am over this old bridge in the middle of the woods. I know that he would be as excited as I am over my discovery.
As you have known for sometime, it has been my intention to return to this fascinating old bridge and just once cross over to the other side and explore. In doing so, I had no idea of the events that would transpire and it is my hope that I soon will find my way back into the comfort of your arms. What has taken place is truly remarkable and I am at loss for words to explain. However, and this is only my best guess is that when I arrived this morning and made my way across the bridge that I somehow stepped through some type of portal, a window to the past if I may say. I know it’s the past because as soon as I stepped over, I could see a man driving his wagon just over the hilltop. In my previous two trips down here I always sensed a deeper connection with the past associated with this place but never could explain it until now.
From what I can figure and this is entirely conjecture at this point is that this time that I am in now and the time in which you and I live run parallel. Judging from what I have seen thus far, I would place this time circa 1890s. What has me puzzled is that it appears to be full summer here since the woods are full and green. Perhaps, and I’m not sure, but since this seems to be a parallel dimension that mirrors our own, the only true way it could exist was if it were like the southern hemisphere. When its middle winter in our dimension, its full summer in this one. I’m not sure, but it seems to make sense to me at this moment. I haven’t been able to explore too much since for some reason or other when I stepped through the portal, all that came with me was my notebook and pencil. My guess is because they are all natural products of the earth whereas my clothes were mostly manmade synthetics. My first course of business will be to find some suitable attire. (I know I should have done like you have told me to do a hundred times, wear a hundred percent cotton.)
July 27th 1897 late afternoon???
Dear Leah, again it is my hope that you have recovered these writings. If you have, then please be assured that I am ok and that all is well. Know that I love you and will somehow find my way out of here. Good news is that I have managed to swipe some coveralls from a clothesline strung behind an old house. They are a little small for me but I am at least covered. I have no way of telling how long I have been here since my watch was one of the items left behind, I can only assume it is sometime after 4pm judging by the suns position. Even without the sun I would know that it is getting late since my stomach has been growling for sometime. When I was hiding in the woods before swiping and donning my coveralls, I did notice another wagon being pulled by a horse down the old dirt road. The man driving the wagon must have been a farmer since his cart was loaded down with fresh vegetables. I have decided to follow his tracks to see where they lead me. I know one thing, I like it here. There is no noise to speak of save the buzzing of the bees and calling of birds in the trees. (I wish you were with me).
July 27th Evening 1897???
Hey baby. I say that because I know in my heart that you are reading this. I miss you so much already. I just wanted to tell you that I did follow the cart like I said I was going to. I guess it was about an hour walking which brought me to a crest on the hill. It was from atop this hill that I could see sweeping green valley with a small village in the center of it. I made my way down this hill and into the edge of town. I passed several couples out for a stroll and did not raise any suspicion; I must have looked like I belonged here. The men were dressed in button down suits with derby hats and the women all wore long flowing dresses that drug the ground as they walked. They smiled when passing me and twirled their parasols in unison. I am totally captivated by the sights and sounds. Down a block and a half is an open park with a gazebo. Red and white banners hang from every shop and post. I think they are left over from a fourth of July type picnic or something. I do know this; I really like it here and wish I could find a way to bring you here with me. I know that we joked about how you are not (little house on the prairie material) but I truly think you would enjoy the pace of life here.
I haven’t done much since arriving in the town common except to sit on the steps of a dry goods store across from the park and try to jot down as much information as I can about this most wonderful place. The people here are so friendly with almost all nodding or tipping their hat to me in greetings. It has been a true pleasure to see how life was 117 years ago. I now know that my guess about the era was close, because as I sat here watching life crawl by I noticed a man sitting in a carriage reading a newspaper and on the front page the headlines read “President Benjamin Harrison excited about Wyoming joining the union”. This happened in 1890 incase you didn’t know.
Along about dusk I saw some children coming down the street followed by an old ratty looking dog. They were carrying a big stringer of fish and looked liked the children that I saw on the other side of the bridge when I came and visited the second time before crossing over. I need to try and catch up with them to find out more about the crossing. I will write more later on, I love you.
July 29th 1890
My dearest Leah, I am sorry I was not able to detail to you yesterday’s events since I am not quite sure of them myself. I did manage to find an abandoned old barn in which to sleep in on the night of my arrival and was quite comfortable. The quietness is however something that I thought I knew, yet I was not quite prepared for the silence of 1890. I awoke early to the rising of the morning sun that streamed through the weathered and cracked slats of the barn. The smell of decade’s old dried hay filled my senses and the air was delightfully cool despite the fact it was mid summer. When I exited the barn I found myself a little disoriented. I knew that when I came to find shelter it was growing dark, but not dark enough to cancel my sense of direction. However, I did not recognize at all any of my surroundings. Even the sun appeared to be rising in what I thought was west. With my stomach growling and my head spinning I know that I need to find nourishment soon.
I set out down a cattle trail about a 100 feet from the barn which ran perpendicular to a pasture fence. I hope that it would lead me once again to civilization. I must have walked a good hour before I realized I was once again back at the barn. Though I had walked in what I thought to be a fairly straight line, it must have been a full circle. Leah, I want to come home, but I don’t even know how to get back to the bridge. If you are reading this, please know that I love you and that I always will. I think that I will go back and sleep some more, I feel extremely tired for some reason…I love you baby.
July 30th 1890
Good morning Leah, at least I think its morning. I’m not sure about much of anything these days, nothing except that I know I miss you. As I write this to you I feel a sense of foreboding. I have yet this morning to venture outside the safety of my hay filled capsule, but will do so in short order. I have to find my way out of here and back to your arms once again. As much as I had wanted to come back and visit the bridge and explore more of its beginnings, I wish now that I hadn’t. I should have known something when I arrived that morning when walked up to the entrance. There was a distinct crackling of an electrical current, yet I dismissed it as being nerves. Yet as usual I ignored my gut feelings and went with my desire instead of my instinct and now look at the position I am in. With all that aside darling, I am going to stop writing long enough to try and find my way out of here today. I will see you soon my love.
August 1st 1890
Leah, two days have passed since I last had chance to record what has taken place and a great deal has changed. Everything seems to be back to normal the way it was when I arrived here. I have discovered many truths and am excited about sharing them with you however I have both good news and bad news. This will have to be the last entry for sometime and the last time you will hear from me for awhile. I have discovered that the opening that I came through has already begun to close and is too small for me to get anything through that is larger than this notebook of mine.
You will remember from my earlier entry when I told you of those boys returning from their fishing trip on the day of my arrival? Well at last I was able to catch up to them and question them about the bridge. They were wary at first and did not want to let me in on their secret. It seems that twice a year for a week at a time the window to the other side opens. They told me that though they have on occasion stepped through, though they have never ventured more than a few feet from the opening out of fear.
According to the boys, and legend, it seems that the old bridge was built atop an ancient Indian burial ground and that when the spirits in the spirit world move from their winter hunting ground to their summer hunting ground they disturb the magntic field that keeps our worlds separate. I figure that this is why twice a year there is a doorway to the other side but it is only temporary. Therefore if when you find this which I know in my heart you will, please come back to me and join me here in this land of our ancestors. I have since my last notation found a wonderful little place for us to stay. I’m telling you Leah, this is the kind of world that one would want to raise children in. There is no violence to speak of. These are honest God fearing folks who believe in right and wrong. There are no gangs, no drive by shootings. No filthy lyrics being played on someone else’s boom box…I telling you Leah…it’s beautiful. So please, tell me you will come to me on July the 27th 2007. I will be standing here on the other side with open arms waiting for you. There will be no need to bring anything since we will have all that we could ever need waiting for us here. I love you Leah…please come. I hope to see you then…love always, Allen.
PS…be sure to tell Ed it is everything he might have imagined.