At the young age of eleven she acted as her father's assistant, delivering medicines by horseback over rural roads, often in darkness. She recounted some of her memories:
"Oh no, (I was) never afraid exactly; but sometimes, if the night was very dark, I used to feel a little lonesome, and then I would sing, as much to cheer up the poor, tired horse as myself. Good old Charley! He always trotted along more briskly when he heard my voice. If the moon shone, those night rides were delightful. I used to gaze admiringly at the moon, and fancy it was a dear friend watching over me. From that time to this the moonlight has always had for me a peculiar and mysterious charm."
(History of the Ely reunion held at Lyme, Conn., July 10th, 1878. Salem, Mass. : Higginson Book Co., pg. 103).