This section contains
letters exchanged between Sue Ellen and JR. It also contains
extracts of Sue Ellens journal (parts of which became a film
Letters during Sue Ellens and JR's
I wanted you to know that I enjoyed
our date last night. I want to thank you for the lovely carriage
ride. I still have the long-stemmed rose you gave me on our
carriage ride. I could hardly eat my salad as I was very nervous.
I am sorry that I didn’t speak a lot to you. I don’t
know quite what to say when I am with you. The candle light
dinner was very nice as well. When you took me dancing afterwards,
I didn’t know what to say. It was the perfect ending
to a perfect evening. You know how to glide so well across
the dance floor. You were a charming gentleman the whole evening.
I hope to see you again very soon. It was a night I will never
Dear Sue Ellen:
I am glad that you enjoyed your night
of the carriage ride, candle lit dinner and dancing. Like
I promised you, I will keep showing you a wonderful time.
I just wish I could see more of you. Momma would like you
to come over to Southfork so she could meet you next weekend.
You said you would be in town for a while and I would like
for you to meet her, as well as my daddy and little brother,
Bobby. I talk about you all the time and everyone is starting
to wonder just who this mystery woman is.
Thank you for sharing a night to remember.
I will be calling you just to hear your voice. Take care my
yellow rose of Texas.
I was so overwhelmed with the dozen
yellow roses you sent to me. You are spoiling me with all
of this attention. The flowers are truly beautiful. Please
tell your momma I can make it to Southfork next weekend as
I have a break in my touring schedule. I must tell you that
I am very nervous in meeting your family. I come from a very
small family and I hope you won’t mind my shyness. I
look forward to seeing you again. I miss you, J.R. Ewing.
Your Yellow Rose of Texas
I want you to thank your family for
me for a wonderful time I had at Southfork. I just can’t
say enough of their hospitality. Southfork is so beautiful.
I can’t wait to go back. This time, I promise I will
learn how to ride a horse. Since you are such a wonderful
teacher, I want you to show me the proper way of riding one
of those beautiful horses. I enjoyed meeting Miss Ellie, Jock
and Lucy. Miss Ellie was so nice to me. She made me feel at
home with her kindness. I especially enjoyed our drive around
Southfork. Your family history is so fascinating. I could
tell by looking into those deep eyes of yours how much you
love your home and the ranch. You care very much for Southfork.
It is such a wonderful place to grow up. You have such fond
memories of your past. I am glad that you shared all of your
thoughts and memories with me. That meant so much to me. It
was a chance for me to get to know that soft side that you
tend to hide from me so much. Your eyes tell me so many things
about how you feel. When we stopped and you kissed me right
by the tree house it felt so special to me. I want you to
open up your heart to me because I will always be there to
listen and to be there for you. You are so very special to
me J.R. You made me feel very special sharing your childhood.
I look forward to seeing you again and sharing more of your
Dear Sue Ellen:
My momma and daddy couldn’t stop
talking about how wonderful you are. My momma thought that
you are very pretty, as well as very nice. She also said that
you were a very elegant young lady. She can see how well you
are suited to be Miss Texas. My daddy was also impressed with
you. I’m happy that you had a good time at Southfork.
It is a magical place just as you described. I feel I can
share anything with you. I have never taken anyone to those
places that I showed you. You are so easy to be with and to
talk to. It is hard for me to express myself a lot. You make
me feel that I can share anything with you. Not only are you
a very beautiful woman, but a very caring one, too. I can’t
get enough of being with you Sue Ellen. I know this is just
the beginning of more things to come. You are truly my yellow
rose of Texas. Until we see each other again.
A personal journal by Sue Ellen Shepard
September 28, 1967
J.R. just called me. We spoke about so many things. I am starting
to miss him as I have so much traveling to do. We will be
apart from each other for a few weeks. I told him I would
try to reach him whenever I had the time AND I was by myself!
My manager is constantly with me, and it is very hard to escape
from her so I can call J.R. I am going to try and call J.R.
in the next few days.
September 30, 1967
I was able to sneak out from my hotel room and call J.R. from
one of the phones down in the lobby. My shaparone won’t
let me out of her site! J.R. was still at his office when
I called. He told me he saw my picture in the Dallas Daily
News. He said that I still had the prettiest eyes in the state
of Texas. His momma, Miss Ellie wants to meet me when I come
back into Dallas. Unfortunately, that won’t be for quite
some time as my little sister, Kristin, wanted me to stop
by my house so she can show off my crown to all of her friends.
I told momma about J.R. Ewing and she wasn’t very happy.
She said that there was a boy that she wanted me to meet.
Momma said his daddy is rich, too. Goodnight, dear J.R. sweet
October 5, 1967
I finally made it home for a quick visit. Kristin must have
worn my crown all evening. Her friends were so upset with
her for not sharing the crown. My poor little sister. She
wants to be just like me in so many ways. Momma sure has some
big plans for her, too. Kristin wants to go to the University
of Los Angeles when she turns 18. She is already talking about
being an architect. She is only 10 years old, but she certainly
has a willful mind of her own. I am going to try and call
J.R. tomorrow. I will only have a few days to spend with my
family. I will be traveling again to Houston for a charity
event. I will be dreaming of you again, J.R., my darling.
A personal journal by Sue Ellen Shepard
October 8, 1967
I had a very hectic day at the charity event. I will try to
call J.R. tonight at Southfork. I miss his voice. I will have
a couple of days off so maybe J.R. and I can spend some time
together at Southfork or maybe in town in Dallas. I would
prefer to spend some time alone with J.R. and maybe even going
dancing again. J.R. is such a good dancer. I think I will
ask him if he won’t mind going out to dinner on Saturday
night and then taking me to Southfork. I am still too nervous
to meet his family. He loves talking about his daddy a lot.
He looks up to his daddy, Jock. I have a feeling that J.R.
doesn’t love his other brothers as much as he loves
his daddy. Until I see your sweet face, goodnight J.R.
October 10, 1967
J.R. just called me. He will be picking me up at the Carlyle
Hotel tonight. He agreed on taking me to dinner and later
on dancing. He also wants to take me to the opera. I have
never been to one before. He said that Madame Butterfly was
being shown and it was his favorite opera. I can’t wait
until Saturday night!
October 12, 1967
J.R. took me out to see Madame Butterfly tonight. It was a
magical night. He bought me more yellow roses. He also took
me out to dinner at the Oil Barron’s. I was so nervous
sitting at J.R.’s table. I drank champagne for the first
time. I even ordered a spinach salad and couldn’t even
finish my dinner. J.R. made me feel so special. He sat next
to me at the opera and told me the whole story of Madame Butterfly.
He kept looking into my eyes and he even held my hand during
the whole performance. On the way back he asked me to come
to Southfork tomorrow to meet his family. They were having
a small barbeque just for me. I told him I accepted. J.R.
kissed me goodnight and told me he had a wonderful time. Tomorrow
is the big day!
October 13, 1967
I met J.R.’s family for the first time today. J.R. picked
me up at my hotel and drove me out to Southfork. He told me
the story about how his daddy, Jock, came into the oil business.
A man by the name of Digger Barnes try to steal the company
away from his daddy. J.R. must really dislike the Barnes’
family. He spoke of Cliff Barnes with such a hate in him.
I never knew this side of J.R. When Southfork came into view,
I thought it was the prettiest ranch I had ever seen. The
horses were galloping right in front of the ranch house. It
is so beautiful and white. The land stretches out for miles
around the house. I can’t believe that all of this belongs
to J.R. and his family. As we drove up the long black drive-way,
I started to get very nervous. J.R. grabbed my left hand and
brought it up to his face. He kissed my hand and told me that
everyone would love me. I would fit in very well and not to
be so nervous. I took a deep breath and shook my head back
at J.R. Miss Ellie was the first one to come out of the house.
She had a big smile and her arms were opened up and welcomed
me. She gave me a hug and kiss and said she was so happy to
meet me. Then when Jock came out, he had such a serious look
on his face. I said hello to him. He reached his right hand
out and I shook it. He gave me a serious hello back. I met
J.R.’s young niece Lucy shortly after that. She was
a very sweet young 6 year old girl. She had the prettiest
long blonde hair and big brown eyes I’ve ever seen.
Bobby, J.R.’s younger brother, was away at the university.
So, I will be able to meet him next time J.R. brings me to
Southfork. J.R. asked me if I knew how to ride a horse. I
told him I have never been on a horse, but would like to learn
one day. So, J.R. took me for a ride in his car and showed
me the whole ranch. It must never end because it took us all
afternoon to see the whole ranch. J.R. took me to his favorite
places when he was younger. I even got to see a tree house
where J.R., Bobby and Gary used to play in. Gary’s name
wasn’t mentioned a lot during my visit. I have a reason
to believe that Gary is the black sheep of the family. I know
that Gary is Lucy’s father. J.R. said that he would
like me to return to Southfork on our next date. Everyone
was so nice to me and made me feel right at home. Today was
a day I will never forget.
A personal journal by Sue Ellen Shepard
October 15, 1967
J.R. just called me and said he would like to take me out
to Southfork again next weekend. I accepted his invitation.
I need to tell him I want to go slow in our relationship.
I still have two more years of college left and I want to
finish school before I marry anyone. Momma told me the other
day that J.R. MIGHT be a good catch. But she has her eyes
out for another suitor for me. Clint called me the other day
and wanted to see me again. I’m not sure how I feel
about him. He was the very first serious boyfriend I have
ever had. Clint is a good man, but I can’t stop thinking
about J.R. J.R. has this way about him that has impressed
me from the start. I tend to agree with my heart when it tells
me that J.R. just might be Mr. Right.
October 18, 1967
The weekend is coming up very fast. J.R. called and said that
he wants to pick me up on Saturday morning at my place. I
am looking so forward to visiting Southfork again. I felt
so at home the last time I was there. For some strange reason,
which I can’t explain, I have a feeling that Southfork
will mean so much more to me than I expected. I can’t
wait to see J.R. as it has been a whole week since we last
met. He does put a smile on my face whenever I see him. This
MUST mean something.
October 21, 1967
I had such a lovely time at Southfork again. J.R. was such
a gentleman again this time. J.R.’s younger brother
Bobby was in town this time. He had a weekend break from his
studies at the University. I liked Bobby very much. He was
very kind and friendly towards me. However, there was a lot
of tension between J.R., Jock and Bobby at cocktail time.
Jock asked Bobby to do some more “favors” for
Ewing Oil and Bobby got very quiet once I came into the room.
I have a feeling that Jock is very hard on both of his boys.
J.R. seems to have a much closer relationship with his daddy.
J.R. talks a lot about Jock and how much he enjoys working
side by side with him. Today, Miss Ellie and I had a nice
talk about my Southfork and how she met Jock. It was a true
romantic story. Miss Ellie is very proud of her boys and actually
mentioned Gary for the first time. I have a feeling that Gary
isn’t well liked by Jock as he got a little upset with
Miss Ellie when she mentioned Gary’s name. J.R. took
me out to the horse stables and let me ride on top of his
favorite horse. I have to get used to riding if J.R. plans
on taking me back to Southfork a lot. J.R. wants to get me
my own horse to ride. He is so good to me. Once again, I had
a terrific time at Southfork.