Geo. M. Parker, Woods Bluff, Ala.
Coffeeville Feby 19th 1871
G M Parker
My Dear Son
Feeling a very deep interest in your present and future well being I am induced to write you a letter this beautiful Sabbath morning.
You are now entering upon your first experiment in business, and your failure or success will have an evil or a good bearing upon your whole after life & you can not now appreciate the deep anxiety I feel for you and I shall pray God to keep you from temptation and I would recommend you to read the 25th Psalm every night until you commit it to memory—and especially the sentence, “Let integrity and uprightness preserve me.” I suggest the following rules for your guidance in business.
1st Abstain entirely from the use of ardent spirits.
2nd Be punctual doing everything at the proper time never putting off until the future, what should be done in the present time.
3rd Be exact to a cent in accounting for all the cash passing through your hands.
4th Never take any amount of money from the drawer great or small, for your own use but always call on Mr. Henson when you need money.
5th Keep a correct statement of money received for your private use & the manner of spending it so that your private cash account will exhibit your receipts and expenditures.
6th Never spend money to gratify a mere fancy, but be governed at all times (in your expenditures) by your necessities.
7th Lay by something every week if but 10 cents for the cause of benevolence and religion.
8th Habitually & daily look to God in prayer to aid you in carrying out the foregoing rules and attribute your success to him.
And in conclusion, I will promise to write my prayers with you daily that you may succeed in your present attempt at business. So as to gradually build up a reputation for capability and integrity as a business man, which can not be hastily attained but only by patience & perseverance.
And if you will observe the foregoing instructions which have been penned under the promptings of an affectionate father’s love, you will never have to look for business, but it will always seek you and your wages will always be equal to your services.
And may God preserve you and keep you from temptation & guide you by his Holy Spirit into Life eternal is my prayer.
Write to your Mother & Sisters often as they will greatly desire to hear from you.
Your father affectionately,