Letter 1 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Caroline Grant
Norfolk March 5. /68.
Dear cousin Caroline,
I have thought very many times of late, that I would write you, for, I knew you would be interested in hearing of the last days of our dear mother, and that you would remember us, in this time of our bereavement, and loneliness.
We cannot tell you, how much we miss that calm, placid face, how changed our home seems, our work, taken from us. In her weakness, and dependence, she had become so dear to us, we had, for so long made our plans with reference to her comfort, that she had become as it were, a part of our life, and the care of her seemed necessary, almost to our happiness.
Yet, while we mourn our loss, we rejoice in the glad hope, that, for her, the conflict is over, the victory won! that to her. The happy time has come of, endless peace, and rest. And she looks back upon the path, by which she was led, and says, ‘It was the best.’
The memory of her sweet patience, and cheerfulness, during all those weary years we have to cherish, and with gratitude to Him, who, while He chastened, graciously sustained her. During the weeks preceding her death, she had very little appetite, and gradually lost strength, on Sat. Jan. 19, D. and I, assisted her in walking from her bed, to the lounge where she lay for a short time, then, with our help, she walked into her bedroom, which she never left more. During the day (Sat) and Sunday, she was able to take but little nourishment, seemed very weak, said but little, in the afternoon of Sunday, she was attacked with vomiting which soon exhausted her little strength, and at a little before 4 o’clock on Monday morning, she passed gently and peacefully away.
We trust the dear Saviour in that last hour, was her support, and comfort. Nearly her last words were – ‘I can only trust in Christ.’
Thus our ‘dear ones’ are being gathered home, ‘one by one.’ How precious the hope – that, through trust, in that same Saviour, who carried them safely through, we shall meet them, in His blest presence, to ‘go no more out forever.’
Mr. Eldridge is nearly well again, preaches as usual. We have fine sleighing all the time, cousin Marcus, has been out for us once, this winter, and we passed a day, or two, with him. He is really quite a housekeeper, but, I think he feels very lonely. Shall you not be able to take care of him one summer more? I am sure he hopes you will. It is the only pleasant arrangement for him, just now, perhaps in time he can make some change.
What do you hear from husband – Abby [Abigail E. Grant Burr]and Eddie [Edward Grant] Is Eddie where you see him often? I know you have many anxieties. Try to leave all with ‘Him who cares for you.’ Write us when you can find time. [Dise...??] desires to be remembered to you. Please remember us very kindly, to sister Mary and family –
With love, and best wishes of cousin Margaret.
Letter 2 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Mrs. Caroline Grant
Care Wm. Hill Esq.
Rec’d letter sent March 1868 – from Mary Shurtleff
March 25th. ‘68
Dear Aunt Caroline:
I have waited a day, since receiving your letter, in the hope of seeing Abbie [Abigail E. Grant Burr] as I wanted to inquire more particularly about her health before I wrote. But for fear you may be unduly anxious about her, I conclude to write today. I saw her Monday (day before yesterday) and she seemed as well as usual – said she had been doing the washing, and had had a fine day for it. I think she has about given up her plan of going to Cleveland, though I am not sure. The last time she spoke of it, she said the teacher of drawing, in Cleveland, had been sick for some time, and her place had not been filled, and she should certainly not want to go until it was. She has gone into two classes in French, and is taking lessons in drawing, here. I do not think her health is as good as it was during the winter. She has spoken of being sick, not able to attend her classes, several times. Yet I do not know that there are any indications of permanent poor health. In speaking of it, she attributed her feeling poorly to the “spring weather.”
Mr. Burr [Almon Burr] came back from Cleveland quite worn out – was sick with fever for a time, but is better now, has commenced study, and teaches one class, though he does not look as vigorous as usual. Probably he and Abbie have not fully matured their plans for the future, and perhaps this is the reason she has not written you. I have been glad to learn the Mr. B. does not call upon Abbie nearly so often as he did last fall. That will be better for both of them, so far as study is concerned. I think Mr. B. is anxious that some plan should be devised by which Abbie can have some opportunity for study and improvement and yet not do enough to endanger her health. If the matter is left to them I think it will be managed so that she can remain here or near here, as Abbie seems to dread the idea of going to N. J. I really do not know whether there is any serious objection to allowing Mr. Burr to make Abbie’s arrangements for her or not. What think you? I feel as if I should like to have her a little more independent of him, at present, if she could be as well provided for by some other <way> friend. Your plan for having her with you at your sister’s, with the opportunity she would there enjoy for French, would strike me as a pleasant one, but I see she does not so view it.
I cannot give any advice, as I really have not an opinion of my own as to what is best for Abbie, though I fell greatly interested to have the best thing done.
I am glad you are thinking of getting settled. I think it will seem so much pleasanter and better <for> to you all, to have a home of your own, even if it requires a separation from those you love, and a removal to the west. If you do go west, cannot you make Oberlin as visit as well as Grinnell? We should be so glad to have you.
You have probably heard, through Abbie, of Phil’s marriage to Rubie [M....?], on the 5th of Feb. They made us a visit, of about ten days, just after, there returned to her home in Madison, until two weeks ago, when they started for the west, stopping here on their way. We liked Rubie very much. She is a few months older than Phil, so is nearer my age than any other member of the family. She is industrious and seems to understand all kinds of work, though she is not very strong She is intelligent, well educated, refined in her manners, and best of all, a Christian. We think she will be a great acquisition to the family. I do hope mother will feel more cheerful when she comes to have such pleasant company.
Thedie is attending school – if he goes on, will enter the Freshman class in Iowa College next fall.
- My health has been quite good since I last wrote – I have been quite busy, providing bedding for our new chambers, getting them ready for students, etc. We rent three of our chambers to students, real nice young men, one in a room, but do not take boarders. We enjoy being quiet and by ourselves. I feel a good deal more at leisure, this spring, - or perhaps I should say less pressed with work – than for more than a year before.
Before closing, I want to tell you how nicely I think Abbie got along last winter. Besides teaching, she accomplished a good deal of sewing, so that I almost feel like taking back what I said about her “lacking dispatch.” I am called away and must close. Mr. Shurtleff joins me in sending love. Your affectionate niece
Letter 3 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Mrs. Caroline Grant
Rec’d. Apr. 23 ‘68
Gives the route & fare etc. to Ottawa
Ottawa Apr 17 1868
My Dear Wife
As it is possible that E. will come here this spring perhaps I ought to write something about the rout to be taken. I have but a few moments to write as I must try to get it in the P.O early to be as sure as I can of getting it mailed as we have a very inefficient P. M. and do not know what to expect of him.
I have seen a hand bill today advertising the fare from here or at least from Lawrence to N. Y. $37.25/100. It is probably about the same from here. This is as I understand it from N. York to Albany, Buffalo, Cleveland, Chicago, Quincy, St. Joe, Lavenworth Lawrence to this place. Perhaps other routs to Chicago will carry at the same price Baggage checked through. The first place I believe where it is necessary to take a carriage is Chicago. Dont know how it is in Quincy. Change cars at St. Jo. but in same depot I believe Change again at Weston to a Steamer unless there has been a change since last summer wh I think there has not. No carriage wanted Steamer runs 7 miles to Lavenworth. Usual fare on steamer $1.50/100 but suppose a throu tick pays it but that needs to be seen to. At Lavenworth if E. has nothing heavy to carry he can run down the river little more than ¼ mile to depot. I he cannot take it on foot must take a carriage. At Lawrence must take a carriage. At Ottawa his trunk must be taken over in baggage wagon wh. will cost 25 cts, but it is not necessary for him to take the bus he can cross the bridge wh. costs 5 cts. keep <straight> strait on till he has crossed 1st & 2nd streets & come to 3d street then turn east or to the left. Keep strait down this street till he comes to a little log cabin without any window the first log cabin he comes to, and if I am not there take care of himself as well as he can till I come. He can go to the house right north of mine or to the one a very little west of south or to a large white house south west where is a barn and haystacks. The little black fellow who drives the baggage wagon knows me well and where I live. The places where I know it is necessary to change depots in changing cars are Chicago Lavenworth and Lawrence. I think there are no other on this line. At Albany I am not sure how it is one rout is to cross the river there another goes on to Troy and crosses on a bridge. The two routs come together at Schenectady. No carriage is required in either case. It is possible you can get a ticket in Flemington. <I> [...?] the purpose of ma preparation for some stock next winter it is important that E. comes now and also to help in selecting a place but you must do as you think best about sending him. I might have had a little more money paid on the lot I sold and paid E’s fare but it makes no difference as it comes out of yours anyhow.
D. Grant [Daniel Grant]
Letter 4 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Mrs. Caroline Grant
[Rev. E. M. Boring Mrs. J. Grant, Matron,
Residence, 290 W. Madison St. 911 Wabash Avenue.
Home of the Friendless,
Chicago,] Sept. 21, 1868.
My Dear Sister,
This Monday morning I have been the rounds, every thing is moving on time, & I have hoped to get a quiet half hour for you, so here it is.
I told John to read to you the long letter I sent him, telling him all about my journey home, & the pleasant visit I had with Mr. & Mrs. Shurtleff – etc – he did not say whether he did, or not & I have given him a scolding for not letting me know – I was delighted with Oberlin, should like to live there, but to be any real part of it, it would be necessary to be connected with the literary life there.
I called upon Mr. Jesse [Malthies?] family; and we remembered old times together, for a little Mrs. M. was my teacher when four years old, & remembers the chapter in the Bible & the reading in the back part of the spelling book on my 4th birth day, & the pride of my father & Aunty [....?], etc. etc. – Isn’t she your cousin? It seems as if she said so. They have a pleasant place.
Prof. Shurtleff’s place, & house are very pleasant, not more so than the occupants.
John wrote me that he liked Mr. Burr [Almon Burr] very much, which I am glad of, and I want Abby [Abigail E. Grant Burr]to ask Mr. B. if when he sees J. as I hope he will in N. Haven [New Haven] – he will not specially seek to help him into an active Christian life – nothing but work develops strength, spiritually as well as a physically. The decided influence of one young man over another especially of the one on a higher plane of spiritual life, is often more than a Mothers.
Tues. Morn. My half hour was shortened & not a quiet break till after ten. I tumbled into bed with a sore throat and sort of miserable feeling generally. Morning always brings relief – it is damp & cold.
I feel very much refreshed by my visit with you all. It was pleasant indeed, & soul - refreshing – and will do much to help me thru the future duties.
I spent Sund. & Mond. of last week with my husband – he is very well.
I wish you could step in now, and tell me what your plans are. Have you decided about going West, & when! I need not ask all I want to know about, for you know I an interested in all that pertains to you & yours. What will Edward do, & when does Abby go to F. And what do you hear from Daniel?
Later – Have just heard that Phelps & Susan will be here Wed. evening – they have written to Joel to come – [wish?] you & D. cd. be here also.
I can never find words to thank you for all the kindness to me & us all, wish it was in my power to do for you an yours something compensatory – Love to all & a great deal for yourself from yr. aff. sister Abby.
Love to Marcus.
Letter 5 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Mrs. Caroline Grant
Mill Brook, Ct. [Connecticut]
Bristol, Ill. [Illinois] Sept. 22, 1868.
I was glad to learn particularly of your state on Abby’s [Abigail E. Grant Burr]return from her visit to Mill Brook – glad to know that she met so many of you – Mr. Burr [Almon Burr], your daughter Abby, Edward etc. It must have been a pleasure to you all, and I am glad that some of you can meet even if it does not seem best for me to meet you.
My own writing has been somewhat suspended to you and Daniel. I wrote to Daniel last January after I arrived at Chicago, and hoped to receive a reply. Up to the present moment no such reply has been received. I did tell him in that letter what course it seemed to me he had better take with reference to your property; i. e. that he had better leave it all in your hands. On my wife’s return she told me that Daniel felt grieved at what I wrote, and (if she received a right impression) had represented me as writing some things of which I have no recollection. Probably he drew some inferences that I did not intend, and confounded them with what I wrote. I will at an early day write him again.
It must be about time for Daniel to come into possession of this Tax Title lands, in case he has not realized from them before this.
I suppose that Edward’s future course is not yet determined. So far as you know any thing what it will be please let me know.
I am glad to hear that Mr. Russell has become the Pastor of the Colebrook Church. It seems to me the best arrangement possible.
I do not suppose that any of us are likely to see a state of things such as we desire At all events, I am confident my own affairs have no likelihood to come out as is desirable. I am pleasantly situated now, & I ought to and trust do, heed the apostle’s exhortation “Having food and raiment let us be therewith content.” We have, up to this moment, paid John’s and Millie’s bills, but we make no provision for the future. I ought to bless God – and in some degree do so – that my health is better. For three or four weeks I have felt none of that numbness that so tired me for more than a year. My scrofulous sores (I know not by what other name to call them) are also much better, indeed almost well. There is however a great difference between almost and altogether, but I hope in a month to be able to report altogether well. When I can do so, I will describe the treatment I have used.
I enclose a “spelling Test”, I thought it would interest you because of its reference to your sister’s Uncle Hill, also as a Test by which to try your friends as to their skill in spelling. If you wish a fair test you must not let the copy be seen, for even a glance at it will take away the fairness of the trial. My love to Abby, Edward, Mr. Burr (of whom I am happy to hear good opinions), Marcus and the rest. Let me hear from you as soon as convenient. Your aff. brother, Joel Grant.
Rec.d by Mail the Herald’s sent by Marcus. I enclose the Postage which I forgot to send before. Rec.d also Conybeare & Howson’s Life & Epistles of St. Paul by Abby. We had our first frost the 16th inst. a week ago to night. It killed vines and injured corn, tho the most of the last was ripe.
Letter 6 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Caroline Grant
Your Sister Abby
[Letterhead: <U. S. Christian Commission> “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”]
Home, Nov. 14, ‘68
Dear Sister Caroline –
I am glad to hear from you once more. Tho’ you did not tell me if Marcus ever [...?] of or has prospects of taking to himself a wife, or when Abby is to be married, or many other things I so much want to know of.
Did Marcus feel satisfied with the selling of the Mill in [N.Y?] Are his crops good? I feel so interested in his prosperity, and do hope he will keep the old place, & that some of us help him, if he ever needs it, and we have any prosperity. Give him my love.
I do not believe you will go West this fall.
John wrote me of Mr. B’s visit to N. H. & said he enjoyed his being there. J. intends to go to Newark for Thanksgiving, and will spend a little time in N. Y. with Mr. B.
Furs are higher in this market than for two years before* so I have tho’t probably they could be better bo’t east. I have not been at the brokers, but will, next-week, & if I find any thing in the gold line that is at all worth while will write you.
I presume your judgment about a watch is the best, and if she can have but one, perhaps the furs are best – certainly they are very comfortable.
I am busy as can be, & have not a moment to call my own – work increases.
Joel spent a little time with me last week & is going to come to Thanksgiving – it is so good to be so near, as to see him often – John writes me every week –
Does Edward remain at your Uncle C’s thro’ the winter? remember me to him, also to Dan’l when you write.
Mary Phelps writes me that Willy, her brother has been very sick. Mary will be with me at Christmas.
My love to coz Orville & Elizabeth, & coz. Martin & family.
John remembers his stay at Orvill’s with great pleasure, and I feel to thank them for all their kindness to him. Sister C. we are all hast’ning toward the Heavenly Home, where there is no trial, nor sermon; May God help us to be faithful to him in every thing. Affly your sister
Abby Grant [Abigail Cowles Grant]
* no tolerably good set can be had for less than $75.
Letter 7 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Mrs. Caroline Grant.
Abbie & Almon
March 10th 1869
My dear Mother,
Your kind letter should have been answered before this, by some of us, that you might know that we received the draft you sent safely, but we have all been, very busy. Edward and Almon with their work and studies, and I with my house keeping. Edward takes hold and studies faithfully, it keeps him pretty busy. With the work he has besides, he cuts our wood for us, for which Almon allows him a dollar a week. Almon teaches three classes now, he hasn’t been very well for some time, he was just completely tired out the last few weeks that he was in New York, and has had no opportunity to rest yet. I think that I get along pretty well with my housework considering my strength, but I get dreadfully tired every day, so that before night comes it seems as though I could not take another step. I have had pretty good luck with my cooking. My bread has been good every time. I get too tired to sew or even mend, I dont know that part of the work is going to get along. We were to have gone to Mary Shurtleffs to tea tonight, but it is so very stormy that it has been put off till tomorrow.
I must go to bed now so good night.
19th I expected to finish this the next day when I stopped writing that night, but I haven’t had a minute since when I wasnt too tired. I am too tired to iron tonight so will try to write a little.
Almon has gone to society and Edward sits here studying Algebra. Edward applies himself very faithfully to his studies.
Mary Shurtleff had her party last week. She had quite a large and pleasant company. I enjoyed it very much. We went last eve to the church sociable
Our sitting room, is a green room, there is green in the paper, green in the carpet, in the table spread and in the pictures, and when we get a rocking chair we are going to have that covered with green, there is green in the oil cloth too. So you see that we are quite greenies here.
Principal Fairchild at whose house the sociable was last eve is soon going to leave here to become president of Berea College in Kentucky.
I had a very pleasant, cheerful letter form Aunty Burton about two weeks ago. I think she must be a great deal better.
March 24th Dear Mother
We received your letter yesterday. I am sorry that you are so worried about us. We ought to have sent you some little word any way, but we have all been so busy.
Mary Shurtleff was down here a few minutes today. She is very kind to me, she gave me a jar of tomato pickles when I came here, and is going to give me some cucumbers, she has given me cake too, and fathers people have given me some, so for the first two weeks that I kept house I did not have to cook any cake.
Fathers people have given us a good many things, today they sent over a nice piece of veal. Some of them come over here every little while, they are all very kind to me.
The cake that Johnnie and the children sent me was real nice. I enjoyed it very much.
Thank Aunt Mary very very much of the linen sheets and pillow cases that she sent me, they will be so nice for next summer, and will make me very nicely supplied with <bedding> sheets, etc.
Tell Johnnie that one of my cats has the sweetest bit of a Maltise kitten, eyes not yet, if she were only here, it would be a second Abbie.
You have said nothing about those statuette photographs, did you find them in Flemington?
The ivy which was sent is commencing to grow very nicely now, the slips didn’t live, couldn’t some of you send one or two slips in a paper? I think they could come safely.
Ella Shepardson is teaching in Cleveland now, so I havent seen her since I have been here.
I will leave the rest of this sheet for Almon or Edward to fill.
With much love to all the dear friend in F. and to your own dear self.
Your aff. daughter
I have just returned from Society meeting and can add but a word for I have not looked at my lessons for to-morrow. We are all very busy as Abbie writes. Edward is doing finely. Abbie gets pretty tired from her work. It troubles me some, for I fear she does not enjoy life as much as she ought. I wish to see her happy and not worked almost to death. I shall do all I can and when our family is smaller, shall insist on her doing less housework, I think we have got along finely so far, as will as I had expected. The money you sent came very opportunely indeed. Am very thankful for your kindness in sending it so soon. It has been quite cold here and was good sleighing yesterday, very unusual at this time. Pardon my writing so little this time. Give my love to all the dear friends with you and accept very much yourself from
Your affect’ate son Almon.
Letter 8 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Mr. Daniel Grant
Apr. 18th 1869.
My dear Father,
Auntie and I received your letter some time ago, and I intended to have answered it long before this, but my time has been so much occupied that I have not been able to do so.
This is a beautiful evening, and I wish our family could spend it together, it is a long time now since we have all been together. I have been here a little more than eight months but it does not seem as though it could have been so long, the time has passed so rapidly.
I enjoy the society here more than I ever have any where before. That is the society of the young people. They seem to be more warm hearted than any whom I have known before.
This is a very pleasant term of school, more so I think than previous one which I have attended.
I am studying Latin and Botany, shall finish the Latin Reader this term, so as to be able to take up Sallust.
I am rejoiced that Buckingham is again elected. I found the prevailing opinion here, to be that Seymour would be elected, but I did not give up to that for a moment. I thought it would be Buckingham, and it was.
Now is about the time when I want some more money, and if you could please send me some I should be very glad. I think I shall need about $30, for I am owing $10, school bill - $5 for last term and five for this – and am owing Auntie five dollars which I have borrowed of her. If you could please send it quite soon I should be very thankful.
When do you intend to leave Winsted? or do you intend to leave at all? I thank you very much for sending the Winsted Herald to me so regularly, it is very pleasant to have it, for then I can know what is going on at home.
How is Grandma now I have not heard wheather she <was> is better or not.
I have a little Sabbath School Class, it made me feel rather strange at first, to be teacher, instead of the one to be taught, but now I enjoy it very much.
Please my dear father accept very much love from
Your aff. daughter
Abbie E. Grant. [Abigail E. Grant Burr]
Cousin Willie Burton is now in Memphis Tenn. and Cousin Phil is a paroled prisoner in Columbus Ohio.
Letter 9 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Mrs. Caroline Grant
Mr. A.O. Pinney
Apr. ’69. Sends Pay’t Wagon
MillBrook Tuesday Morng Apl. 20./69
We have many thanks to give for your kind letter which came direct – of the enclosed draft Marcus furnishes Twelve Doll. in pay’t of indebtedness –
The remainder ($20) is for the wagons, which has been transferred to the Pinney farm – Should it appear that this is not enough, more will be added when you come to Colebrook – But this may be better than at Auction in Winsted – The Axles are iron and appear strong – as does the box also – tire and rims of wheels somewhat worn – and a little behind the times as you know -
Items of news are not plenty or of special interest – The papers will have given you the result of our State Election if in that you felt an interest – Democracy has come out second best to say the least –
But in our little town of Colebrook it was otherwise – Here money and whiskey prevailed by a very small majority –
The Sugar Season did not commence till the first of the month (April) and has just closed, with rather an abundant yield. Wish you and your Jersey friends could have been here to test the quality while warm from the boilers – our folks have made 450 lbs. while Martin & Susan say they have made 800.
The spring season as you know has been cold and late – Snow has been visible in all directions – and is not all gone yet though wasting somewhat rapidly of late in the few warm days.
We find our new partners in business very pleasant as yet – think we shall like them – at any rate we mean to if possible
Elizabeth promises to write you ere long – I hope she will – But if she fails to you will not be disappointed, since as you know she does not wield the pen of a ready writer – or is slow to fulfill promises – Please remember us kindly to Mr & Mrs Hill and family – not forgetting that for yourself good wishes are ever in store at this end of the line – Respectfully
Please acknowledge the rec’t of this
Letter 10 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Caroline Grant
Newburyport [Massachusetts]. May 25, 1869
My dear Caroline,
I was glad of tidings from you, re’d yesterday. When you learn the whereabouts of my small carpet bag, which I have used since 1841, perhaps, you can secure it for me at some future time. I place a factitious value upon it. I could have new material fitted to the old frame here, tho I cannot well procure a new one. I loaned it to save Miss Emerson the extra trouble as [....?] [.....?] cast her, I wrote on the label of card, “To be left with Mrs. Phillips” This may have been written with pencil, & obliterated. Give yourself no solicitude. “Be careful for nothing,” is a precept with an important meaning, for us to obey externally, & in spirit, how forcible the teachings of Jesus to us in Mat. 4. 24 – 34.
To be in harmony with the great truth, “sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof,” required confidence in God’s ordering all things after the counsel of his own will. While he continues our lives, he has a place for us in this world. What we need to do, is find & to occupy this place, heartily doing & submissively suffering his will, in what he appoints for us. What a loss we should sustain, if we had not the record of the words of our Great Teacher, who cares for us, & pities us as a father his children. <There is> Not a sparrow falls “on the ground without your Father,. But the hairs of your head are all numbered Fear ye not, therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows” The discipline of each of us, is imparted in love, & wisdom. It is our part to be in, harmony with the world, & with the spirit of God; also with his providential dealings with us. Your trials & mine are real, therefore, we may lay hold of the promise “My grace is sufficient for you.” God’s people are not to be saved from trials, but supported in them. Perhaps you may like to see how many promises are connected with the idea of trials, like Isa. 43’2. The how impatient that we “consider him who endured such contradiction of sinner against himself last we be wearied & faint in our minds.”
Have you ever found all the expressions in the bible “I will be with thee,” & noticed the connexion?
“While place I seek, or place I shine, I find there’s happiness in none, But with our God to guide my way, ‘tis equal joy to go or stay.”
A sheet of light note paper, in the envelope with these sheets, in case you wish to send them to Daniel. My salutations to him. Very truly yours
Z. P. Bannister [Zilpah Polly Grant Banister]
If you do not send the inclosed sheets to Kansas please take care of them for me, [...?] sent some to Mary Shurtleff that Abbie [Abigail E. Grant Burr]will see before they shall be on their way to Iowa.
Edward would be worth more to himself & others thro’ life, by helping Abbie every day about house. Learning to make bread turns to great account with many a man, and he can do what requires less skill. It will make him more elastic & social, & easy, & benevolent.
Letter 11 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Mrs. Caroline Grant
Flemington, N. J.
Bristol Ill. July 6, 1869
I was very glad to receive yesterday yours of the 30th ult. Matters have been a little out of joint in my writing to you – I was aware of the fact, but did not realize it so fully until I rec’d yours. I gladly sit down then to write you.
My health is better than two months ago. That fearful numbness which then excited so much anxiety has now ceased to trouble me. I am not sure any medical prescription helped me – indeed I presume it was a symptom accompanying my transfer from a younger to an older period of life. When I saw Dr. Sage of Unionville, Ct. [Connecticut] about (but less than) two tears ago (he was our Physician at Avon) he gave me a prescription (Homoeopathic - through he used to be regular) which I used for many months; but its benefit was not marked.
The scrofulous affection has been for a long time almost cured but does not become entirely so. Improvement began when, about 18 months since, I came to Ill. and is due I think to a course of treatment recommended by Physician who attends upon the Home of the Friendless in Chicago. He is a Homoeopathic Physician, but his prescription was not of that kind. It was the constant and abundant use of the syrup of Yellow Dock and Burr Dock – mingled in about equal proportions. I have prepared a beer from these roots wh. I use during spring summer and autumn. It would be well I suppose to use during winter too but it is not convenient for we to make it then. The beer is a contrivance of my own through the Physician said it would be a good way* to take the medicine. To most people the syrup, and even the beer, is unpleasant.
Since I began this course one side of my leg has entirely recovered – is apparently as well as ever, and has been so for 10 months. The other side, (and that too in just the place where father’s greatest trouble lay) is almost well but not quite. I hardly look for its absolute restoration, though within a few days I have, at my own suggestion, changed my medicine putting red clover blossoms in the place of the dock roots. I see it mentioned in some papers that they are a good remedy for cancer – and though I do not suppose my ailment is cancer, yet I suspect it may have a similar origin.
My wife <will> expects to start for the East a week from to day. She goes mainly because she wishes to get rest attend John’s graduation, wh. is to be three weeks from to-morrow (more accurately the 29th) I cannot give her plans fully, but they embrace a visit to brother John – also to Winsted and Mill Brook. Of course these last, and indeed all of them will be very brief, as she does not propose to be gone more than three weeks.
It is hardly probable that I shall go, though I should be glad to do so. Many considerations render it on the whole not wise - at least it appears so now. Possibly the aspect of things may change. You may see her at Brothers John’s or at Mill Brook.
I have Aunt Banister’s carpet bag, and will at once report to her. It did not occur to me that she would care to have it returned. The inquiry comes in good time as my wife can take it East.
Am glad to hear from Daniel. It is a long time since I heard any thing from him. Through my wife I heard that he had taken exceptions to my letter of a year ago last January - a letter which I hoped he would answer; but which be never did. His own imagination created some, if not all, the phantoms of wh.
he thought my letter was full. I pardon (and always have and shall) the sensibilities of one who has tried as hard as he with no better success – of one in whose life failure has been the rule and success the exception. I should have written him long since if had known where to direct.
Am glad to hear from Abby and Eddie. Should I go East I shall make it a part of my plan to visit them – as I propose to stop a day or two at Oberlin. I shall not leave till about 10 days after Abbie does.
I thank you for your suggestion respecting Harvey Grant’s family. Shall endeavor to act upon it.
I remember my visit to Mr. Hill’s with great pleasure. Please assure your sister and her husband – and the children too, of this.
Your aff. brother,
* or an unobjectionable way. I make the beer just as I used to at Father’s though I suspect the corn is of no consequence.
P. S. I have no reason to complain of the labors of my position; though I am far from doing all in it which it would be well to do. The parish is poorer than I supposed and poorer than I hope it will be. They give me $800. As long as Abbie is at Chicago it is a pleasant place for me to labor in. It is a three hours ride from Chicago 3 miles of it by stage and 48 by R. R. The fare is $1.90; but ministers ride at half fare.
I had a sickness last Dec. & January much like that with which I was bought down at Newark two years ago last winter. It lasted longer however, laying me entirely aside for eight weeks. I have again recovered, though I cannot expect to recover from many such attacks.
Letter 12 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Mrs. Caroline Grant
Bristol Ill. Oct. 28, ’69.
Yours of Oct. 22, was rec’d to day. Am very glad to hear from you and Abbie – also from Mr. Burr, and Prof. Shurtleff and Edward. I write at once, not because I am able to suggest any thing exactly suited to his desires, but to suggest a possible release from his anxieties. I am not without hope that I may hear of a school for him, though I know of none now. What I would suggest is that he apply at once to his father to secure him a school in Kansas if possible. Perhaps you have pulled on his this string already - perhaps it will yield no results in any case, either because there are no schools, or because his father has no patronage in connection with them. But if the matter has not been tried I hope it will be.
Schools here are usually taught by young ladies the whole year round, and are largely already engaged. I will make immediate inquiry, however, and hope to secure one if he needs it.
I was in Chicago yesterday returned today. Abbie is well – though much burdened particularly because the Home is in great disorder – the carpenters & masons having failed to get their work forward as far as the unusual cold weather requires. She is looking for you, though she did not know exactly when.
Presume you may have heard of the death of our poor Willie. He died Oct. 16, AE. 17 “the child of misery baptised in tears.” It was a blessed release to his spirit, which for 15 years had been locked in his tortured body as in a Bastile. We were all present at his funeral – and together stood at his grave and by the graves of our two others, three living by the three dead.
I remember with great pleasure my visit at Oberlin. Am hoping to repeat it some day. Was glad to make the acquaintance of them all – please remember me to Mr. Burr and Abbie also to Prof. & Mrs. Shurtleff.
My scrofulous affliction is at last removed. The final blow seems to have been given it by the use of red clover blossoms during the past summer. I made a beer of the tea, and drank it constantly – scarcely tasting any thing else, after my return from the East.
Your aff. brother,
Letter 13 -~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---
[Addressed to] Mrs. Caroline Grant
Care of “Home for the Friendless”
911 Wabash Avenue
Chicago – Ills.
Grinnell, Ia. Dec.22nd. 69
Dear Aunt Caroline,
Perhaps you have sometimes wondered, since that stormy evening when you were so kind as to see me off from Chicago – what sort of trip I had, and how I found the friends here. I did really intend to report myself earlier – have said to Mother almost daily, “now we must write to Aunt Caroline right away” – but among the multitude of things which have had to be done, the things not absolutely unnecessary, have been neglected. The past has been a discouraging year for farmers, on account of the wet weather during the harvest season and autumn. When I came here, I found our folks were keeping three hired hands, the corn being mostly unpicked, and the wheat unthrashed. So many men made a great deal of work in the house, and I was not surprised to find that mother’s sewing was greatly behind. I have kept myself very busy helping in one way and another, finding no end to the things I would like to do, either for mother’s family or sister Lavinia’s. Two of the hands left ten days ago, but the number of the family was kept good by the unexpected arrival of Phil’s wife’s sister and her husband, Mr. and Mrs. Childs of Madison, O. – They were here until day before yesterday, when Phil commenced moving over to his new house, two miles from town, and they went too. Phil has been back every day since for a load, but is nearly through moving now. It leaves Mother, Will and I, alone, most of the time, and we enjoy it greatly, though Will is very busy yet.
I hear from Mr. Shurtleff quite often but have had no leisure to write to any no else – consequently have heard nothing from Abbie & Edward. I should like to know where Edward is, and what he is doing very much, - Mr. Shurtleff does not succeed as well as he had hoped, in securing funds. He expects to meet me this side of Chicago, at Cortland, and we will visit his relatives in Sycamore and St. Charles, and then go to Chicago, together. We shall probably get to Chicago about the middle of January. Then I hope to tell you many things which it would be tedious to communicate by writing.
I should like much to know how you are pleased with your new situation. Please give my love to Aunt Abby – I hope she has entirely recovered from her cold – and remember me to Miss Bowman and the other ladies of the Home with whom I met – I have a pleasant recollection of then all, as well as our gallant escort from and to the cars. Lovingly yours,
Mary B. Shurtleff.
I have kept this some days to give mother an opportunity to write, but she has been busy taking care of fresh pork, and has not yet found leisure, so I thought I would send this on, and let her write another time. Willie too, says ‘he must write to Aunt Caroline.’ Mother wants me to apologize to you that she did not acknowledge earlier the receipt of those things you sent out to her. It seems Phil misunderstood the matter and mother thought they came from me! – The night dresses were just what she needed, and were very acceptable. She is wearing them now.
We are going to Phil’s to eat a Christmas dinner – Have a beautiful day and fine sleighing for it.
Your letters have all been a great comfort to mother – I have heard her speak of your good letter respecting grandpa’s illness – and your last one, giving so particular an account of Uncle’s Marcus’ wife and things at the old homestead was a great gratification.
A merry Christmas greeting to all I know at the Home!
Ever affectionately yours
Mary B. S.