Quakertown Online

 

Abiah Chapman Phillips Letters

 

The following twenty-eight letters spanning the years 1890-1911 were sent to Abiah Chapman Phillips (1834-1911) by her children, children's spouses, and grandchildren.Genealogical information about many of the people named in the letters is available at www.whipple.org.

 

Thanks for help in transcribing the letters to Mandy B., Emily H., Melissa M., and Jaime P.

 


 

[Letterhead:]

D. E. Crouch

Real Estate Bought and Sold

House-Lots or Houses

Sold on Installment Plan

Arlington, Mass.

 

ArlingtonAug. 28 [1890]

Dear Mother

I will will [sic] write you a few lines in answer too [sic] your letter although I have no news too tell. I was real [sic] surprised about those babies. Elvin had a letter from Alden the other day he wrote that he had a boy + was staying away from work too take care of his folks. I have been better since I was sick I believe I have been about as hungry as I was after being sick last fall. I have been out riding on the cars a good deal lately and it is a change for me. I + Lena went too church last Sunday the first time I have been since we stopped going too the Temple I believe the meetings begin at the Temple next month. I am glad they do, for the boys dont have any ambition too go anywhere else. Nettie says it seems too much like heathens too stay at home every Sunday. Cale + Nettie have gone down too peace meeting are coming home toomorrow [sic]. We heard Netties mother had been sick + had the Dr. every day since she was here. Elvin is putting up houses he has about $30,000 worth of land in Medford a little ways from here. I dont know but he will get all the quakers out here if he keeps on. Tell Tom there will bee [sic] a chance for him pretty soon I wish he + Lillie were living here now. I have wished a good many times the girls were here too go around with me. Strangers dont know my condition as well as my own folks. But Lena has been the most thoughtful of anybody here. She is as careful of me as an old grandmother. Tell the girls I think they made a pretty good choice in picking out dresses + I thank you ever so much for that curl I will close my letter hoping too hear from you soon I am going too can about three bushel of pears. This fall we have sold 4 bushel. I have dried some sweet corn and more than half of it soured.

Lina

 

 


 

Arlington Mass., Oct.17.[18]90

Dear Mother:--

We arrived here all Right. Baby and I were pretty tired yesterday but I guess we are all right now Arthur went yesterday alone I wish you would write whether he got home all right when we got here Fannie & John Will & Eva Willís father & Silas Crouch were all to stay all night it was about eight O clock when we got here. Lina seems to be [crossed out: all right] real smart. I have not been around any yet. Tom seems to be took with every thing around here. I guess I wont write any more this time.

Good bye with love to all.

Lillie

 

 


 

Mystic Mch 18th [1891]

Dear Mother

I have been thinking of writing for several days but didnít seem to get to it so now I will begin. I have thought perhaps I might come home again before I go to Boston but somehow I get cold so Easy I have not tried to go much since I have been here. I went up to see Lucy one Sunday but took cold and have not thought much about going since. But I did think of going up to Marys yesterday or to day but it was so cold yesterday I couldnít go and the boys could not spare the team to day so I suppose I shall have to give up going now. I had a letter from Elvin to day. He said he would meet me to the depot tomorrow if I could come. He has got tired sending papers back & forth for me to sign but has to in order to do any thing in the line of Business. I shall try and go tomorrow if nothing prevents. Elvin wrote in his letter before this that he would like to have you come out there to make a visit as he could have the opportunity of making matters straight again. I told him I would like to get back time Enough to hear Moody before he goes away. He said Moody would preach 21 sermons the last week in March & he thought that would do for me he said he had heard him preach 12 sermons in 5 days. He said some of them introduced him as Reverend Mr. Moody and he said he was no Reverend but common folks and he didnít come to preach sermons but he came there hoping to bring souls to Christ. He said first his presence would show any one that he was full of the Spirit. Mother Crouch came here yesterday & stayed all the afternoon she walked from home around through head the river here & back home that same day. I told her I wished you could walk as far. She had her arms have full of bundles to. She had been to Evas she is getting along pretty well and doing her work. I guess Mother dreads to have Amy get Married and leave home she talked so she would not go away this spring if they should get Married. She said she had been trying to come up to see you and something would hinder. I told her I thought you would be glad to see her up there I suppose Arthur will go away pretty soon I hope he has found a good place does he thinkhe can come home often. I guess the girls are making calculations on coming home quite often this Summer. The baby grows real cute he has got so he can run all around the house. Lillie says you can have that medicine. I will close now it is bed time so good bye.

Love to all from Lina

I will try and write to you after I get home.

 

 


 

[Letterhead:]

Palmer G. Whipple

Dealer in REAL ESTATE

Real Estate Sold on Commission,

-- Sunny Side Ave., -- Laural Hill.

Norwich, Conn.

 

Mar 23 1894

Dear Mother

I will scribble a few lines to day as I am to [sic] Nervous to sit still I guess I ate to much dinner. We had Bean parridge [sic] and it was pretty good. I am feeling about the same as common my fever comes & goes most every day those Barbaries [sic] you sent up does me lots of good when I am fevery Nellie makes a drink of them. Those Lucy sent up were splendid to eat but were terrible physicing for drink I think you took lots of pains to send so many things. I relished those parsnips ever so much we had two good stews and the other things you sent to. I thank you for them all. My appetite is a little better than it was for hearty food. I guess any fever is not quite as severe but lasts a good while. I get up in the afternoon and sit up till bed time which comes about seven O clock I sleep about an hour sound + then I wake up + have a Nervous spell before I can go to sleep again. I think some times it is morning when it is about Midnight but I get quite a lot ofNaps after that. What a pleasant spring we are having I enjoy sitting + looking out the window pleasant days + hear the peeping frogs & Birds. Nellie has a few hens that cackle makes it sound like spring. I must close as I am to weak to write much hope to hear from you pretty soon my love to all I hope you are better

from Lina.

[Envelope: The last letter written by Lina to her mother]

 

 


 

May 6 1894

Dear mother I received your letter I will give a little excuse for not writing sooner I have been pretty sick ever since I came home my throat gathered and broak [sic] and when I supposed it was getting better I was taken bleeding in the night and I bled about a quart of blood in three nights but I think I am all right now I have commensed [sic] working and feel better I hope lina is better I shall try and come down as soon as I can

from your son

Daniel E Crouch

 

 


 

[May 1894]

...

Aunt Maria + Desire stayed here + helped us ever so much. I had a pretty lingering time. I didnt sit up any for three weeks. I think something gathered in my head it felt as if every bone in my head + face was sore + lame. After Nathan was better of the measles he was taken real sick again + thought he had a stoppage he had a high fever + we was up with him about a week. He is real weak now he lost a good deal of flesh while he was sick. We have all had a pretty good appetite since we got better most of the time mine is most to good. I have wanted to see you so bad I felt as though I couldnt wait hardly + I wanted to see Lina too. If it was not for the baby I would try to come up there. After mother died Elias wanted to see you so bad I guess he would went [sic] up there if we had not all been sick. Desire got pretty tired of helping take care of the sick ones she was real good + she had her planting to do alone to. Mary davenport wrote a letter to us + sent 15 dollars in it. Aunt Elisabeth helped us ever so much cooking for us we could not get a chanced to cook every so much of the time while we were sick. When mother was sick there was five of us sick a bed at a time. Just as quick as one got well enough to sit up they had to commence taking care of the rest one night there was four that sit up that night Laura had the earache most all night + mother was real sick to we had a terrible time with the baby she was so cross, She dont rest as good nights as she did before she was sick. Today is sunday + I will try + finish my letter + send it up today if I have a chance to when it comes sunday I begin to feel as if I want go to meeting. Desire seems to think there will be a meeting started here before long. I felt real sorry to hear that Georgie had joined that church. I thought it was a pity he didnt take that dream different it seems like a dreadful thing to have the mark of the beast. Walter seems to think the children wont stay in that church much longer. I hope they wont but I am afraid they will get deceived more + more it would be a blessed thing if they would come to the truth & hope we shall all do so that we can be saved at the last day. I think mother had overcome the wicked one & could realize that she had attained to something in her spirit more than the rest of us. I felt dreadful sorry for her this winter my being sick she took a burden on her + she was harassed a good deal. The children didnt always do as they ought to. Children dont have patience enough. It is a comfort to me to think Lucy has not joined this church. We heard that charles plyman said you had joined them I thought I should have to hear it from somebody besides him before I should believe it. I hope you will be able to come + make us a visit before so very long give any love to all of the folks up that way especially my Brothers + sisters + reserve a share for yourself

from Mary.

 

 


 

Old Mystic CTMay 29th, 1894.

 

Dear Grandmother,

As mother is writing to you I will write a little. We have all got over the measles and the most of us are about as well as we were before I went up to Aunt Thankfulís funeral yesterday. I had not been anywhere before for eight weeks. It made my legs so lame that it hurts them to walk to day. Any went up with me when we came back we stopped to [Amels?] and saw the baby. It is about the age of ours. Sadie, Zephie and Louis have gone up to Aunt Elizabethís this afternoon. It is the first time Louis has been out of doors since he had the measles. The neighbors are just getting so they dare to come here. I think Aunt Esther must feel very lonely now that Aunt Thankful and grandmother are dead. You are all the grandmother we have got now and we are very anxious to have you come down and make us a visit.

 

30th. I will write a little more to day. I put some clothes to soak and am going to wash to day. I have been washing a few at a time for several days. We had so many dirty ones that I could not wash them all in one day. I had two boiler fulls of sheets and pillow cases. Aunt Lina must suffer a great deal if she is short breathed. Grandmother suffered terribly being short breathed when she had the measles she would get so tired breathing. She groaned nearly every breath she took when asleep and awake. Aunt Elizabeth did most all of our cooking when we were at the sickest. Father was not as sick as I was afraid he would be. He was up some all of the time but two or three days. We have got along pretty well with our planting. There are so many writing to you that I cannot think of much that will interest you but what they have written. I hope you will not get sick up there. How is Aunt Sylviaís folks give my love to her when you see her. How is Lillian now give my love to Aunt Lillie and Aunt Nellie + tell them I can scarcely wait to see them. I am going to write to them as soon as I can get a chance. I believe it has been six months since I saw Aunt Nellie + Uncle Arthur. We should like to have him come and see us if he can and the rest of them to. We have got the baby in short clothes she looks real cunning. Joel + Nellie live down here to the old place. I was by there the other day + she was out with Joel planting pole beans. She was bare headed with her sleeves rolled up above her elbows + coughing. She had a hoe + was working like a streak. Please write as often as you can I will close with much love to all.Alice

 

 


 

May 30, 94.

Dear Grandmother,

I thought I would write to you as we are all going to write. I guess you will have something to do to read so many letters. I think we are all improving slowly. How are you all getting along. I suppose you are pretty confined with Aunt Lina. You will have to be carefull & not get sick your self. It seems as if there isnít much chance for the well ones to take care of them selves where sick folks are. I kept around 2 days after I began to break out with the Measles, Grandmother was so sick I didnít feel as if I could go to bed. That night after she died I went to bed and didnít get up again for about 2 weeks, we have had a terrible time, the Neighbors have very good to help us. Mary Davenport sent Father a letter with a $5 Dollar bill in it. I guess Aunt Desire feels pretty tired, she stayed up here when Grandmother was so sick and then Jabez had the Measles and sent for her & she went up there & helped him some. Then Aunt Thankful was real sick and she stayed down there a goodeal and she had all her garden to plant her self. Aunt Maria has been very good to. Phebe Prosser came here to help us & said she would stay 2 or 3 days. It made Mother about sick when she found out she was here. After she had been here a while she wanted us to let her give Grandmother some Aconite but they wouldnít let her not knowing any thing about it. Phebe said Grandmother was a very sick woman. She said she never was where any one died but her mother. She said she didnít like to be where any one died. The next morning she said the Measles were coming out good & she thought Grandmother would get along all right. She said she wanted to go home & get her man some milk & then she would come right back. That was the last we heard of her. Grandmother died that forenoon. I think she thought Grandmother wasnít going to live. Uncle Ori is real smart he walked up from the head of the river Sunday, Monday he came down here & went down to Fatherís Mill and back up to Aunt Elizabethís. Riley carried him to Alonzo Shavers last night. Sally is still there to Contentís she has got a little Baby about a week old she has 4 children and is only 21 years old. It seems good to be well enough to go out doors. But there doesnít any thing look pleasant. There is a Whippoorwill that comes under Grandmothers window and sings most every evening since Grandmother died it makes one most sick every night & hear it coming. We donít see anyone very often except some French men that come to the well after water. Byrun has bought some timber of father and he has got a lot of French men chopping wood. August is the name of one he is to work on the road. He came to the pump after water to day. Alice was in the porch washing & he had to come to the door & have a talk with Alice I guess he is a strange fellow. When you get home I hope you will have a chance to come down & make a good visit when she gets well enough to take care of the baby. She hasnít been any where for 6 months except down to the old folks party. I think she would gain faster if she could have a change. I feel real sorry for Aunt Lina we hear down this way she has got to be sicker than she is now before she can be healed. I donít see what she has got to suffer so much for. I should think she would feel as if she couldnít bear so much. Aunt Elib said Caroline died in one of these turns like what Aunt Lina has. She says she thinks Aunt Lina will die in one.

 

I will close now with Love to all. I like to hear from you as often as you can write so good by until I see or write to you again. I want to see you pretty bad & all the rest of my aunts & uncles. It seems like a long time since I saw any of you.

 

From your Grandaughter Sarah A. Watrous

Alice, Arthur & my self have had 3 pretty May Baskets hung this month, & well filled to.

 

 


 

June 1 1894

Dear Mother I hope Lina is not wors [sic] by the looks of her hand writing I should say she fails very fast I dont think she will visit here a great while longer she will have have [sic] to go home to the God that made her ask her if she has got confidence to meet gods judgement [sic] ask her if she is sure her name is written in the lams [sic] book of life tell her that I am sure for I dont doubt gods[sic] word and if she will beleave [sic] gods [sic] promises she can bee [sic] sure to if any belonging [sic] to the latter days passes remarks on what I have said I will let them know I don [sic] fear the judgement of man You will find $8.00 I will send more soon. I will keep sending as fast as I can

Yours truly

D E Crouch

 

 


 

September 10, 1896

Dear Mother,

 

I am going to try and write you a few lines, you will be pleased to get it.I suppose I could have written before if I had had ambition enough.

 

I think my heart is a little stronger, other ways I canít see much improvement.My food does not seem to do me hardly any good.I have a good appetite and eat good too, but am about as poor (thin) as May was I think.

 

I want to see you so bad I donít know what to do.If I could only have a chance to talk with you about spiritual things.I feel as if it would be a great enjoyment, for I have taken lots of comfort talking with you, not that I have anything on my mind in particular.I feel as though I am perfectly safe in Christ and I feel that He is very dear to me, also to the ones that are trying to serve Him.

 

George has not given up looking for me to get better and perhaps the Lord will restore my health to reward his faith.I feel entirely contented for the Lord to do his own way for I know that is best.I think George feels so too.

 

I often think of Father and hope he is as comfortable as he was.

 

I must close now with much love.I feel that you have done by me all that an own mother could, and I think I love you just as much.

 

From your loving daughter,

Sylvia.

 

 


 

[Envelope and letterhead:]

D. E. Crouch

REAL ESTATE

8 John St.

Westerly, R. I.

 

Ledyard, Ct.

July 13th, 1897

 

Dear Grandmother,

I will write a few lines and send it with Fatherís letter. I hope you are gaining all the time. I believe we are all about the same as usual. I have been picking peas and beans for Sam & Silas. I picked five bushels of peas one day. I hope you enjoyed your visit with Aunt Miriam. Were the cherries ripe when you came away? We had quite a lot of cherries this summer but not enough so we could get any to can. I suppose you heard that Uncle George had been up and stayed all night. Sadie sent a letter to me by him. She said they had got a pretty good [tenement?]. I guess she and Laura have pretty good times. I must tell you about the meeting and the people that go to them. The Hall is about full every Sunday, and they have more singing than they used to. Last Sunday evening Lucy & Allen, Polly, Joel & Jacob James Watrous Hannah Crouch & her brother Arthur & Solomon and his wife and baby and Aunt Dezire [sic] were all there at the young peoples meeting, and they seemed to be real interested. Joel wants to join and help us. He and Solomon both spoke and Uncle Dan read a chapter at the request of Bessie Matthews. She and Olive expect to be baptized next Sunday. Arthur Crouch was baptized last Sunday. Well my paper is full so I will say goodbye.

Your loving granddaughter,

G.C.[Geneva Crouch?]

 

P. S.Mother sends her love to you.

[Envelope addressed to: Mrs. Abiah Phillips, 318 Laurel Hill Ave, Norwich Conn.]

 

 


 

Norwich, Conn.,

Aug. 25, 1903.

 

Dear Grandmother:--

 

I wanted to write to you and ask your advice about a few things. Is it right for anyone to go without being baptized with water; and can anyone be baptized with the Holy Ghost before being baptized with water. (Does Peter mean anyone can receive the Holy Ghost before being baptized by water that is were there some people there that had not been baptized by water? The reference is Act 10:44-48.)

 

In Romans 6:1-6, is the baptism Paul is writing about, the baptism by water or the baptism of the Holy Ghost? Do you think anyone can be sanctified and not pay their debts when they are able to? A woman that I think is in the holiness mission that claims to be sanctified has owed my father quite a sum of money for a long time. This Holiness mission is not quite right but it is the best place I can find in Norwich. There are a number of people in this mission that claim to be sanctified that have not been baptized with water (immersed) and do not think it necessary to do so. They believe that all anybody (as near as I can make out) needs to do is to be baptized with Holy Ghost, and that this is Christís baptism. They use this reference to prove it Acts 11:16. Please advise me and answer these questions the best you can.

 

We are all getting along pretty well up here. My mother says I look pretty healthy. I am getting along finely with Godís help both spiritually and bodily. My mother wonít hardly let me do anything about religion she is so afraid I will get crazy (as she calls it). I donít say much to her now because I have found out that it doesnít do much good. The family may go down to Peace-meeting, perhaps, Thursday or Friday, may be sooner maybe later than that. I would like to get down and see you and the rest of the folks and if God is willing I shall. My mother and father donít want me to come down because they are afraid I will get crazy (as they call it), although I told them I was still as crazy as I was when I came up. I hope you and all the folks at Q.-T. are all right bodily and spiritually. I am still happy in the Lord, reading His word, and praying, and praising Him, as I know you are. Give my love to Aunt Mary and Uncle George, and Freddie and May, and to all the rest of the people at Quakertown. Peace be with you all that are in Christ Jesus. Amen.

 

From your loving Grandson and Brother in Christ,

Roy.

 

I send this for you to read (1 Thess. 4.)

Please give the letter with his name on it to Lon Shafer.

 

 


 

Quakertown

Sept 7

1903

Dear Mother

I will try to tell you about the meeting and the way things are going on. The prayer meeting was here Saturday night and we talked and united in prayer to know where we should hold the meetings Sunday and it was decided to have it here untill [sic] some other place could be had and we had a glorious meeting we realized that Godís presence was in our midst Ethel Watrous testified to sanctification. I noticed she was very much affected during prayer. There was considerable weeping Nathan Crouch was moved to tears. The love of Jesus came into my heart while in prayer and I felt as though I wanted to through my self down at his feet and kiss them like Mary Magdalene. Oh it is blessed to be in Godís presence. I was surprised to see such a lot here. The west room was packed full and all that could got seats in the kitchen some standing up besides lots more out of doors. There was scarcely any body at the hall except some socialists. Sam came up after meeting mad and said Alden had dome all in his power to break up the meeting several said it was about the best meeting they were ever in. Lorenzo Williams was here and spoke 2 or 3 times he said it was fore taste of heaven, he talked the best I ever heard him, he said God was here. Oh I wish you had been here, also [R. L.] Erickson and Walter as they have not come yet. His wife had a letter Friday saying he did not have the money to come with and was still in Minnesota he wrote a letter to the Brother and sister in Quakertown and expressed his love for them and how his heart longed to see them. As we are longing to see him too, they decided to take a collection and send for him. Dan said they raised more than enough. Sister Slater and Annie was [sic] here in the evening. Oh how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity what must Heaven be like if we get so happy here. We had a letter from Walter Monday last I think it seems pretty good to come home by the sound of his letter, he said if it was Godís will he had just as soon come back here in Quakertown. I think Erickson would have been so happy that he would have leaped for joy had he been here. Roy went home Saturday his Mother dont [sic] want him to come back. Herbert and Anna went to Norwich to the mission yesterday you may see me over there before long if things work right to favor it. The meeting lasted untill [sic] nearly three and then the people seemed to hate to break up. I believe God manifested his pleasure at our separating from the evil that has been brought into that hall. Well I close with love to you all hoping to see you before long.†† Lucy

[Envelope addressed to:

Abiah Phillips

Gales Ferry

Conn.

(care) John Watson]

 

 


 

Quakertown

Oct. 21st

1903

 

Dear Mother

I will write a little and send today I did not write last week because Geneva was going over there I thought you would hear the news. My nerves have been troubling me some, so that I sent for Geneva to come home for a while untill [sic] I could get rested up. She came home yesterday morning. I have not been to meeting since you was [sic] here. Erickson expects to move to Mystic this week. Alfred is going to move into the same house with him. Walter was sanctified a week ago last Saturday night here at home it was a wonderful meeting. There was none here but our own family. I cannot tell you very well by writing but when I see you I can explain better. Georgeís Wife was here this morning she wants help pretty bad. She came up to see Jessie but I guess she donít want to go there, she is going to go with Alfredís folks. I guess Ethel Watrous is pretty bad off I donít see any thing to hinder her from losing her mind as she is going now. Did you hear that Lina Whipple is dead. I guess the girls that is Maryís & mine are going to take turns writing to you. Laura and Hannah are staying to Nathan Barns in Genevaís place, they hated to have her gone away pretty bad but I suppose she will go back when I feel better I suppose you have heard that Jessie Shaffer has a girl and named it Geneva. Geneva and I want to go down and see her some day. Charlie & Grace are married also Arville Ackley, they were married a week ago. My face pains me so I will not try to write any more this time. I hope you are both getting along all right. I may be over again this fall if I feel well enough. Love to you both from,

Your Daughter Lucy

 

 


 

Mystic Conn.

Oct. 27, 1903.

Dear Grandmother,

I dont know as you have heard from Quaker town very lately so I guess I must write. Riley + I are living here alone yet. We havent heard anything from father Olin yet. Mother O. wrote to him last Tuesday but got no answer. I think he must have been there + got the letter or it would come back. Mother O. has been over to Uncle Nathans ever since you went to Aunt Mirriams. They were anxious for her to stay + there was nothing to keep her here so she stayed. She has been over every sunday. Riley was healed of his terrible lame back sunday before last. It had been so lame he could hardly get up + down + pained him so some nights he couldnt rest. It was healed almost instantly. He could walk better right away, + in the afternoon he could get up + down all right + pick up a pail of apples + carry it, + monday night he brought in two bags of grain alone + carried them in the west room. After meeting Erickson prayed for him + he felt the touch in his back while he was praying, but didnt know it was healed till he began to try it. Wednesday night after he got in bed he was sanctified. He told God he was ready + asked why he was waiting + it came. It was a burning from head to foot. He has been so happy some of the time he would burst out laughing just like water running down hill, + praise the Lord + sing + jump too. He didnt put any of it on either + there was no one round to excite him. Carlton came yesterday + took dinner with us. He is sanctified. Joe + Agnes got saved last wednesday night. It looks good to see Joe praising the Lord. He has the light in his eyes + so has Agness [sic]. She said she received the light years ago but didnt walk in it. How much different any ones face looks after they are saved. Erickson moved to Mystic last week. Alfred is going in the house with him. Mrs. Erickson was pretty pleased with that. I suppose partly because he is gone so much + she dreaded to be alone among strangers. He has gone back to Worcester to hold more meetings. We had splendid meetings sunday. They will have meetings in Mystic in a hall tuesday + thursday evenings. Sunday night meeting was to Hunts + next sunday + I think all the sunday meetings will be there. Uncle Georgie + Aunt Mary were to meeting sunday foremoon. they walked too I suppose + towards night I saw them go by Aunt Mariaís walking.

 

I wonder if you have heard of the latest marriages. Grace + Charlie + Arvill + Frank Collins were married the same week. Vill was married in white silk trimmed with lace + ribbons with a train + long bridal veil. They live in Mystic now. Grace wore brown I suppose for I saw her in brown the next sunday. Something new. It was entirely plain I think but a gathered front + plain collar of light brown silk. what a contrast between it + Vills dress, but I doubt if Vill looked any better or prettier than Grace. Charlie said he never knew what a home was before, but I guess Aunt Marias home dont seem any more homelike to her, now that she is all alone. Charlie was sanctified the same week he was married only before, so he had a double portion of joy. Charles + father are pretty intimate again. they spend the evening with each other once in a while. They have meetings to Aunt Desires + fathers but no one goes much but father + mother + the children + Charles + Aunt Desire. Geneva is home helping her mother. She was getting pretty tired so Uncle Alden took Hannah down + got Geneva. Laura likes staying there. She came home saturday + went back sunday. Rose Wiedler was to meeting sunday night. You know she has a little baby. We are looking for Alfton + Welcome to get converted + also Flora + Will. Agnes said Flora is under heavy convection. Did you hear about the burden placed on Riley for his fathers soul? It was before he went to Andover. He hadnt been awake but a few minutes in the morning when it came over him all at once. I didnt know but he was dying. He just managed to say ďprayĒ + I did pray, then the power eased up enough so he said ďpray for my fatherĒ. I prayed for him then it passed off. He was so exhausted he had to lie + get his breath before he could tell me what was the matter. He said if he had seen his father dying + knew he was going to hell he couldnt felt any worse + live. He told his father, but he said it meant himself. He seemed to have an exalted spirit + it seemed to me a hard spirit at Uncle Dan, just because of his belief. Riley felt pretty bad all that day + at night we went to Ericksons to prayermeeting + he told him + we prayed about it + he prayed for the burden to be lifted from Riley, lest it be to heavy to bear + it left him then. Lon says the Lord wont turn a deaf ear to all the prayers that are going up for him in Quakertown. Erickson said the Lord wanted his soul or the burden wouldnt been put on Riley. Jessie Crouch was burdened for Alfton + Welcome sunday night. She fell to the floor + was unconscious for an hour I think. Alfton got out just as fast as he could when she fell. Lon had asked him if he was saved or something like that + he wouldnt answer. Just sat there smiling. Riley asked Welcome if he knew where he would go if he should die before morning + he said he did. Riley said ďwhereĒ + he said ďto hellĒ. I tell you there was some prayers went up for those boys there + he Welcome heard most of them, but Alfton wouldnt come in again. I think they will get saved. If it hadnt been for the burden Riley had I wouldnt known [sic] what to make of Jessies. But the Lord is working powerfully.

 

I dont know as you can hardly read this I have written so fast. I hope you are all getting along well, + I hope Uncle John will get converted. I am praying for him. I wonder what they thought of Erickson. I donít suppose you can write very well but we would be pretty glad to hear from you. I believe the folks round here are all well. I guess Aunt Lucy is feeling better. I saw she + Geneva go by yesterday. This is thursday. Well I must bring my letter to a close. I wish we could go over there maybe we can if we dont go to Groton to live soon. We expect to go for a while when father O. gets home. Give my love to Aunt Mirriam + Uncle John + keep a good share for your self. Riley sends his love to all. Be of good cheer.

Alice

 

 


 

Mystic Conn. Nov. 5

 

My Dear Grandmother

I have been thinking for several days about you and how well you would like to hear how we are getting along down here. Hannah and I are staying down here to Mr. Barnes now. I suppose you have heard before this that Aunt Lucy was not well and Geneva had to go home. The meetings we have down here are Tuesday and Thursday evenings and Sunday afternoons and we take turns going for one of us have to be here all the time or feel as though we ought to be. I like staying here real well. Now that Ericksonís and Alfreds family have moved down here we have someone to go to see. Sadie was here yesterday and had Christine with her. She has got her a place down here to work. The mans name is Mercer he is a clerk in Noyes dry goods store. There is no one but he and his mother in the family his mother has been sick for years and they want some one to take care of her they have a girl to do the work. They live near the depot. I guess it is about as far from here as it is from uncle Georgies down to the corners below the Hall.

 

It is so near by we can run over to see her most any time. I guess she will come down to stay next Thursday. Hannah went over to Ericksons yesterday afternoon and Jessie came home with her and they went to a prayer meeting in the evening. The meeting was held by the congregational church in a building called the Parish House it is just across the street from the church. The Parish house is about as far from here as it is from Aunt Lucys house to that little house across the road where Alfred lived. We can hear the singing from our bedroom windows. I had a letter from Lucy this morning she did not say but what they were getting along allright [sic]. Allen Crouchsí [sic] boy Zera came up to be prayed for in the meeting Tuesday night I believe Agnes and Joe Crouch are converted now and are coming to the meetings. I have heard them give some good testimonies.

 

I was up home a week ago last Sunday and I expect to go up next Sunday or Sat. night. Carlton and Emil have both been sanctified since you went away and Riley too. I have enjoyed reading my Bible since I have been here I have more time to read and can get alone by my self while I couldnít feel as if I aught to improve it all I can. If people could realize what a precious book the Bible is they would not neglect to read it as much as they do. Since we have been down here we have had a chance to see something of how the world lives and what a condition the churches are in Hannah has been several times since she has been here. There is five meeting houses here in Mystic besides a room where they hold Christian science meetings Three of the churches are in sight of here where we can see them out of the windows and then there is two more on the west side of the river. I must close now and put my letter in the office.

Your loving granddaughter [sic]

Laura

[Postscript: I hope I will have a chance to see you again before it comes winter weather. I hope you and Aunt Miriam are both well give my love to her.]

 

 


 

Nov. 12 1903

Dear Grandmother

 

I guess it is about time I wrote to you I wanted to ask your forgiveness for the way I spoke to you one time when I stayed to Uncle Georgieís & I never have thought of it when I had a chance. It was about Freddieís supper one night we had cracker biscuit & sweetened water for supper & he would not eat any but wanted some bread & molasses & I said he could eat bread & sweetened water as well as molasses. Arthur had a meeting over to Cider Hill school house last night. Alice & Riley & I went over. Uncle Dan took his team & Carlton went with us. We had a real good meeting although there was not many there. I believe there will be some good done if we donít ever see any fruits. There was a couple young men there that got under conviction. He expects to have one Saturday night & I donít know but he may have more. I suppose Sadie has gone to Mystic to stay. The place isnít far from where Laura stays. The woman is an invalid they wanted Sadie to take care of her & they have a hired girl. There isnít any one but the woman and her son in the family, he is a clerk in Noyses store. Sadie didnít think she would like the place. I suppose you knew that Clare & Dan had moved. The meeting is appointed there saturday night. The folks have meetings to our house & to Desireís. Hallie is to work to Groton & Charles is there alone. I guess he has rather a hard time to get along & do his cooking. Louis Crandall is our mailman now. Aunt Elisabith is over to Marthaís making a visit we have not heard anything from Uncle George yet. I guess I will close my letter & let Alice mail it. †††††††

 

I hope we shall get a chance to see you before spring good bye with love to all.

Your aff. granddaughter

Lucy

 

 

Dear Grandmother

Lucy hasnt covered her paper so I will add a little. I was very glad to get your letter & to hear you were getting along well. I wish Aunt Mirriam had faith for healing. I wish Aunt Maria did too. She has been so lame she couldnít raise one foot & I donít know but both, she had to drag them along on the floor. I believe she is some better now. Geneva is still with her mother I suppose. Aunt Lucy & Uncle Alden donít go to meeting neither does Byron. He is dead set against jumping & that is what ails them all I suppose. Julia [crossed out: Watrous] Prosser & Silasís wife donít go & Steve & Silas donít go very often. It seems strange that Aunt Lucy should feel so. I hope they will find out their weakness & come back because the meetings are just as good.

Alice

 

 


 

Dec. 12, 1903

Dear Grandmother,--

I was up home last Sunday and Lucy had a letter that you wrote to us girls so I thought I would write again. I didnít send you any address for I knew that you had been so you could not do very much writing and I did not know as you could now but I was glad to hear from you. I hope you and Aunt Miriam wont get sick over there. Geneva expects to go home this afternoon and stay over Sunday. Our folks were all well when I was home except Lucy she was having quite a bad cold. Aunt Elizabeth was not at home I donít know where she was staying I did not see her to meeting.

 

We heard yesterday that Carlton was very sick and they did not know as he would live. I believe they think he strained himself working and then took cold. He is up to his fathers now. He was taken sick to [_____?] and his folks came after him and took him home.

 

They have been trying to have revival meetings here in the Methodist church this week. I have been to two of them and they were pretty dried up it made me appreciate what the Lord has done for one and what privileges I have had in hearing the truth preached. The Lord is with us in the meetings and we believe there is victory ahead and that people will be converted here in Mystic. Sadie is staying at home now and working for Charles Watrous. I believe when I wrote to you she was coming to Mystic to stay but she only stayed a week. Win Hunt is staying over to Ericksons and working in Westerly. There is quite a lot of us here in Mystic now. It seems like home here. I donít get a chance to go to our meetings very much but I am in hopes that we will have them here once in a while now. There are two appointed here next week one to Mr. Coghans and another to a womans house I believe her name is Mrs. Park. Charley Shafers wife has a boy born Thanksgiving day. Its first name is Roy, named after Roy Phillips. I have forgotten its other name. Melissa is around the house now and seems quite smart. Jessie and I was up there Tuesday evening. The baby is real pretty. I donít know but Uncle George is going to make another years visit he hadnít got back Sunday when I was home.

 

There are quite a number that have stopped going to meeting I suppose an account of the jumping. It does not offend me at all if they are happy enough in jump why I am glad of it. It is a bad time for colds now I hope you are not having them over there. Phebeís Ralph has had a cold and he had three fits I was over there one day when he had one of them. Her baby has been sick too. I guess they are all right now for she took them both and went up to Lonís Thursday. I was there Sunday afternoon and they were all well her baby is a little thing it is pretty too it looks fat and well.

 

I will close now and let Geneva write the next of the news. I should like to have you write pretty well if you feel like it.

Give my love to Aunt Miriam

Good bye with love

Laura Watrous

Mystic Conn.

Care Nathan Barnes.

 

 


 

Mystic Conn. Dec. 30th 1903

Dear Mother

Lucy has been writing to you + I will write a few lines + put in with hers. I think of you + Aunt Miriam quite often + would like to see you both. I think you must be a great deal of company for each other both Spiritually + otherwise. It is not so with all Sisters. With many when it comes to talking on spiritual things they are divided as it is with our family. I realize more + more how much it means in the pslams where it says behold how good + how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity. I think it is strange that Uncle George [Olin] stays away so long Rily is not able to do any thing + they have to depend pretty much wholly on their friends for help he seems to be a good deal as he was last winter. They have to keep a good deal of fire + it makes his head ache so he has to sleep in the kitchen where it is warm. I was glad that some one was able to help them just before this snow Arthur came over + he + Dan cut some wood + got it into the mill + Elias sawed it

...

performance. I think now is the time to hold on + as John says look to yourselves, that we lose not those things that we have wrought but that we receive a full reward. I notice that when people are in trouble they donít feel like doing these things such as jumping running up posts shouting + many other such things. I donít feel like encouraging young people to go to such meetings as those. Uncle Zachy said Erickson tried to get Charley Chapman up jumping + when he got through he said he was sorry he did it he said he jumped because the rest did + there want [sic] any Spirit of the Lord in it. I am dreadful sorry things have got in such a condition. It is like Solomons works an exalted Spirit + who can tell what the end will be the Bible says he that exalteth himself shall be abased. I suppose you know that Carlton is at home sick of typhoid fever. I have not seen Aunt Lib since she came home. I was glad to hear she had come home. I hope you + Aunt are well. Yes I believe that to fear God + keep his commandments is more acceptable than all this outward show of music + singing + I hope we shall try + keep ourselves humble for the time is short here + we have no time to spend in vain glory. I must close with love to you + Aunt Miriam + Uncle John.

From your Aff. Daughter

Mary

 

 


 

Feb. 8 1904

 

Dear Grandmotheró

We received your letter some time ago and [were?] glad to hear from you. I meant to have written before. I guess you think we have almost forgotten you. Well, Grandmother, I am happy in the Lord. I was sanctified the first day of this year about ten oíclock at night after I had gone to bed. It was something real I could feel it in my body as well as in my heart. It is a blessed experience to have. I have not been home but once this year it has not been so that the folks could come after me very well. I went over to New London with Win Hunt Sunday morning, we intended to go Saturday but he was sick in the morning and did not feel like going so we took the train Sunday morning. We went to Mrs. Burdicks and went to the meeting over there they had real good meetings there. I stayed all night to Mrs. Burdicks and came home on the train about eight oíclock this morning. Win was on his way to Bozrahville where Lon[,] Erickson and brother Arthur are holding meetings. It is a place north of Norwich. Lon Shafer and Mr. Fenner went up first. I think it was about a month ago and some of them have been up there ever since. They went to Franklin from here and from there to Fitchville and from that place to Bozrahville and now they have got a nice hall to hold meetings in and the people are getting interested. Allie expected to stay with Jessie Shafer but Friday I heard that she was up to Phoebeís. Erickson and Lonís families are getting along first-rate the Lord is supplying all their needs. The last I heard from Riley he was improving. I am in hopes he will come out all right. We are having meetings here in Mystic over to Ericksonís house Thursday nights and to a womans house near the laundry. Her name is Hattie Parks.She has been converted since we have been having meetings here or rather reclaimed. We meet at her house Tuesday nights. In spite of all the bad weather and snow we have been out. I have had two sleigh rides and Geneva has had two besides sled rides. There has been so much ice that it has been pretty hard work getting around. Geneva has slipped over on her back twice and I have come near going down several times. I hope you and Aunt Miriam are well and that you will take good care of yourselves and keep well. We are trusting in the Lord and he has been very good to us. I am thankful that I have been so well this winter I have had only one cold since I came here and that did not amount to much. I must close now as it is bed time.

 

Your loving grandaughter [sic],

Laura

 

 


 

Mystic, Conn.

Feb. 19, 1904

 

Dear Grandmother:

 

I thought I would send a letter with the books and also some of the poetry I composed this winter. When the weather was so bad I couldnt get out + no one could get here except those that did chores, and Riley didnt feel like talking much, I got about to an end for some one to tell my thoughts and feelings to. I cant talk with some people much. They seem to have kind of off turns, + no matter what I talk about, they will be on the contrary side + try to argue against me. Finally it came to me, why not write some poetry, so I began. It was a great relief to me. I remembered you like poetry so I thought it might take up your mind a little. Mother Olin said if father Olin dont bring his singing book home again she will want hers back sometime. I have got one but it has pasteboard covers + I thought it wouldnt go through the mail so well as this. I read the book of Aunt Mirriams. I wonder if there are cats and dogs in heaven. Mother Olin went to meeting Sunday. Halsey came after her. She said they had a splendid meeting and not much jumping though there were quite a lot there. Arthur has got back but I havent had chance to talk much with him. He brought Laura home Monday. She is staying home this week. Lucy has been having pain in her face + isnt able to do much of anything. She has had a cough all winter, it would be rather better then worse, it kept her awake nights + I think she is kind of worn down with it. She feels a little better than she did. Uncle Georgie came yesterday to get Sadie to go to Isabels. Willard has had the measles + I suppose the rest will have them. Willard + [Maimmie?], I suppose she is the girl that they have got, she was there last I knew. They were having kind of a diphtheria sore throat + Sadie didnt want to go unless it was necessary. She went to Aunt Phoebes + she thought she + Uncle Dan would go over today + see how they were. Uncle Tom was the one that sent Uncle Georgie after Sadie + wanted her to come to his house + stay all night + he would take her over. It seems as if they have been trying to get her away ever since she came home. Chris wrote to her + told her she hoped she wouldnt get taken in with Ericksons religion. I expect they feel worried about her. If she could get out from under them I think she would see things after a while. I believe Arthur enjoyed his preaching trip. He + the others with him went out + worked cutting ties and wood and any thing they found to do. The people thought it was unusual for preachers to work. About Rileys head, I suppose he has catarrh. He raises stuff that comes from his head. He had that before he was sick, but I dont know as it was quite as bad as it has been since. His ear once in two or three days perhaps, will have a little scales of wax like in it, or maybe it wont be dry. But it dont really run. He feels quite well. Gets up + does about all the chores but drawing water. The chain broke so we have to use a pail. Zephie dont come but once a day. Riley works pretty steady on carpenter work in the house. He has split + dried a lot of kindling wood for summer. He has to rest once in a while then go at it again. Especially sawing wood. I believe Aunt Mary went to Mystic with Uncle Georgie yesterday.

 

Louis Crandall is still carrying the mail + he must know who I am so I suppose I would get my mail all right in my name. I believe we are all well + the folks at home, except Lucy + mother isnt feeling very well. I must close with much love. Mother Olin sends her love to all. We are very glad to hear from you.

Alice

 

 


 

[Date?]

Mystic Ct.

Dear Grandmother as Mother is writing I will send a few lines I am well excepting a cold how are you getting along I would come and see you if I could. Havnt [sic] we had a terrible winter + guess it will seem unnatural to have summer weather again I have just been to Providence with Uncle Tom Christine and Francis. We staid [sic] three days. I staid [sic] most two weeks at Isabels. They have all had the measles but were better when I came away. I am at home just now Charles does not like it to have me running off taking care of sick folks so much. Aunt Lucy was over to Aunt Elizabeths Tuesday. Wednesday Uncle George Phillips was over and brought them a bag of flour box of soda 50 cents worth of sugar and a piece of fresh beef. Laura is going back to Mystic Saturday. Geneva has been staying alone. Charleys girl Vida Shaffer stays with her four nights in the week I believe. I cannot think of any news so I will close with love to you all. From you Grandaughter [sic] Sarah

 

 


 

Norwich, Conn.,

Apr. 1, 1904

 

Dear Grandmother:--

You wrote in your letter, which I was very glad to read, that you would like to know how I was getting on spiritually. I am going to tell you the best I can, not concealing up my faults. I can say that I am a great deal better than I was about the time you was [sic] up here though I have done many things and said much of which I was very sorry afterward. But after I had confessed I felt much better. My temper is my worst enemy. It causes me to say things that I am sorry of afterward. But I am fighting it and am gaining victories everyday through my Lord Jesus. I do not read my bible as much as I would like but I talk with my Father and ask him for strength to go through the day and win the victory over satan. You know how I talked to mother when you was [sic] here. That was only one of the many times that I have talked to her in that way. Those sins are growing fewer by the grace of God. It was all caused by my temper. Pray for me grandmother that I may overcome the devil. I mean to do right but many times I am overcome. But I can see that I am growing better little by little. I have put up in my room three mottoes that I have asked God to bless to me. One is ďWatch and Pray,Ē another is John 8:36, and the other in Luke 21:19. After you went home I was the worst I had been for a long time but one night my dear mother who was sorry to see me in such a condition came and had a talk with me alone just before I went to bed, and told me to try with all my might and see if I could not do right. After that I tried almost of myself to get back to God, but of course Jesus was helping me, and now I am the best that I have been ever since you went away.

 

Iíve seen the lightning flashing,

And heard the thunder roll,

Iíve felt sinís breakers dashingó

Trying to conquer my souló

Iíve heard the voice of Jesus,

Telling me still to fight on,

He promised never to leave me,

Never to leave me alone.

 

From your loving grandson,

Roy

 

Heb. 4

I John 4

 

 


 

Mystic CT

June 21 1904

Dear Grandmother:

I guess you must think the people down this way dont think of you very often if you havent heard from any one since you did from us. We never found out Aunt Nellies address till lately. There hasnt been hardly a day since but what I have thought I must try to write, but there are so many little things I feel obliged to do, for all there are only two of us, that it seems as if the day is gone before I hardly know it. I dont dare to do much different than Mother Olin, for if she found it out I suppose she would think her things were going to destruction while she is gone. I suppose you have heard by this time of father Olins death. Her feelings toward him seemed to change after she found he was dead. She didnt want to hear any thing against him. Aunt Grace sent us a letter on monday but he failed so fast she was afraid we wouldnt get it in time to get up there to see him alive, so she telephonned tuesday morning. We didnt get the letter till wednesday. Riley + Uncle Dan started about noon tuesday + got there about seven in the evening, + he died about five the next morning. He was taken out of his head sunday + didnt know any thing after it, though he would answer when they spoke to him till tuesday noon I think it was. He never moved hand or foot for twenty four hours before he died. He didnt think at all but what he was going to get well. Uncle Giles said after he got round the first time his appetite was poor + he didnt gain in strength, though he would tell people he was getting better all the time but Uncle Giles could see he wasnt. The last time he was taken down he didnt live but three or four days. It seems kind of strange why it was so ordered that he + Riley couldnt say anything to each other + he shouldnt even know Riley had come. I dont suppose he knew that Aunt Grace was going to send for his folks. They had a funeral up there thursday + one here to the hall friday. Riley brought him down on the train thursday afternoon + Charlie met him at Norwich. Uncle Dan drove home wednesday + made preparations for things. Some people seem to have the idea that his folks were partly to blame for his staying away from home as he did. Some think he felt bad because they went to Ericksons meeting, that they were against him + he went up there to get sympathy. Others think Riley was to blame because he had that experince for him last fall, but that was something he couldnt avoid + it wasnt caused by any feelings that he had towards his father or any thoughts either. We havent been to meeting yet. We expect to go to the school house There are quite a few that go there now. There is a meeting to the hall + one to [Emmils?]. Charles has left father + goes to the hall, he tried to get father to go but didnt succeed. Father has been invited to the school house + mother + the children supposed he was going last sunday but he didnt go any where. I dont know whether he didnt feel like it or whether some notion took him. Laura still hangs to Erickson, or his meeting. He has gone to Chicago + his family expect to go next month I believe. You see Laura has been right under their thumb where they couold look out for her. If she thought anything wrong they would explain so it would look reasonable to her + they think all that dont go to their meeting have backslid + if we say anything as though they are not all right, they think it is because we are wrong + they are so much better than we that is why we find fault. There isnt a person in the world that can tell them anything if it doesnt agree with Ericksons talk. I do hope they will have good meetings to the schoolhouse for I think we need the strength gained by meeting with Gods people. I have been so afraid I would cool off + loose instead of gaining, that I have felt burdened, + I dont know but I have tried harder than I would if I had gone to meeting, but havent had the comfort + strength a good meeting would given. I hope you will be able to get down here this summer. After I heard you had gone to Uncle Arthurs I expected you would come down this way + visit after visiting Aunt Nellie + Uncle Walter, + I was waiting to hear you had come to Quaker town, but I heard instead that you was sick.

 

26. Well I must try to finish my letter today. It is so hot we didnt go to meeting. Riley gets so tired that sundays he cant seem to get up spunk enough to get ready + go to meeting We have got some where about two hundred chickens. Some of them are little bits of ones + have to be fed often, so it makes quite a lot of chores. I try to help what I can with them + in the garden. We have got the most planted that has been on this place before for a good many years. The field south of the shop is all plowed + mostly planted besides the spot where the potatoes were last year + quite a piece in the orchard. Byron planted the field corn + most of the sweet corn with his horse planter. We havent used our horse yet for anything but furrowing + cultivating. She broke off a piece of her hoof + we cant have her shod till it grows out. She + Riley sweat about alike when they work. We havent been to Aunt Mirriams but once since Mother Olin has been there, except Riley took her back when she came home the first time. We havent heard from her since the day of the funeral. Byron brought her over the day before + she staid [sic] here that night + to Aunt Marias the next + she took her back I suppose. I have to write once in a while or she will worry about Riley. You wouldnt think he was fit to be up to hear her tell how he is sometimes.

 

I suppose Lucy + Laura have gone to Lons to meeting today, + Father + Mother + the other children to the schoolhouse. How good it would seem to have the people united as they were last summer + the winter before. The most of us have learned some valuable lessons since then. I have learned that there is one that sticketh closer than a brother + he has been very close to us. Last spring I was so hedged in + weighed down with trials + temptations I felt as if my life was being crushed out + that I must have relief soon, when I felt so completely at an end while I was praying about it, it seemed as if there was something comforting hovering round me only I couldnt grasp it. All at once these words ďMy strength is sufficient for thee, my strength is made perfect in weaknessĒ came to me. I didnt know then that both sentences were together in the bible only in the first it is grace. I know that was in the bible but it came to me ďstrengthĒ

[Alice]

 

 


 

Mystic, CT

March 9, 1908.

Dear Grandmother--

I thought I would write and tell you the news for I knew you would be anxious to hear if you hadnt. Our dear sister is at rest, and while it seems so lonesome I can rejoice, too, for we have the assurance that she has gone home to the Lord whose word became so precious to her while she was sick.I dont know whether I told you in the other letter about the change she had or it was after I wrote.But that night she was very restless and uneasy and the night seemed so long. I began to tell her about Jesus how he came and suffered for us and how he comforted His children and she quieted down and I thought perhaps she would go to sleep so I stopped talking, she wanted me to go on so I talked a while longer and then stopped so she could go to sleep if she wanted to but she asked if it tired me to talk, she wanted me to talk some more and after I stopped that time she wanted me to do something for her + when that was done she acted strange. I couldnt tell whether she had a pain or what, I didnt know for a minute or so but she was going into a fit. I asked what was the matter + I dont remember whether she spoke or not but soon she said she felt better + asked if I would bring her testament the next day + if she didnt feel like reading if I would read to her. I told her I would + she spoke in such a tone so tender + as if she anticipated great pleasure. I asked her if it seemed pretty good + she said it did, she asked the time of night + I told her 12 oíclock. She said she didnt care how long the night was now for she wasnt uneasy but felt as if she could go to sleep or anything + if I would read to her she wouldnt be uneasy anymore. So I told she had better go to sleep. I felt as if there would be a change for the better or worse soon. But thought so long as the soul is ready it dont matter as much about the body. She went to sleep + hardly stirred for an hour + sleeping so long she got to breathing so strange I got frightened + called Arthur up. He was in the bedroom next to us. But he thought she was resting + might feel better when she waked. One reason I was frightened was that I put my hand on her forehead + took hold of her hand it didnt disturb her at all, but she hadnt been awake very long before I saw she was worse. I thought I would call mother about four but didnt dare to call her to [sic] early for fear she would get sick, she had not been up any nights, but Beth was so restless + the time went so slow with me, five minutes seemed almostlike an hour. It seemed as if I never could endured those long hours sitting there alone by her bed if it hadnt been for the assurance I felt that she would go to Heaven where I could meet her again. She kept growing worse. Thursday fore noon she heard Hazel singing + said she wished she could sing + soon she began, then her mind began to wander + she talked + sang almost steady when she was awake, then she would doze off. That night Father sat up most of the time + mother lay on the lounge in the room. I lay down about three hours. Friday morning she got so she couldnt talk but just mumbled. I dont thing she realized anything at all. She suffered so we could hardly endure to stay in there. It made me feel so bad I couldnt keep from crying. Father stayed right in there nearly all the time, but mother + I took turns. She had such hard work to breathe + her head turning from one side to the other + her eyes rolling round + so black you couldnt see the pupil. She suffered along that way till Friday evening when her breath went out as easy. We got Aunt Desire + she stayed all night. Almost the last words Beth spoke were that she hadnt seen May. I thought I would write to May + tell her about it. She awoke one morning + look out the window + said ďMy Redeemer!Ē She was so patient, that is she didnt find fault but was considerate of others. She wanted to get in the big cradle so we got her in. Mother sat rocking her + she looked up + saw her with her head down + she said, ďMother, you are sleepy, you neednít rock me anymore, you go right + lie down + I will lie down with you.Ē It went to motherís heart. She caller her mamma when her mind was wandering. Father felt worse after she died than before. I expect he had hope till the last for when Aunt Desire came + we thought every breath would be the last he wanted to do something for her. It almost took his life. His mind seems to be running on her almost steady. He went in the room Saturday morning + walked the floor. People were so afraid that it was diphtheria or some contagious disease we didnt have any funeral. Albert Gallup came down blowing about it. Told Riley he hadnt ought to had his family down here. She was burried [sic] yesterday near Allie. I went with Riley to Dr. [Caseís?] after a certificate + told him just how she was + he called it suppurative tonsillitis. It seems by the doctor book that she had tonsillitis + quinsy both. Vangy felt pretty bad when she thought she wouldnt live but since she died she feels as if she was much better off + dont act as if she missed her. But she told Lucy she felt as if she couldnt live much longer. Lucy asked her if she felt ready to go + she said she did. The boys had to take the burden + find out as near as they could what Father wanted + go + do it. He never left the house only to do some chores at the barn. He dont eat anything to speak of + I dont know how he is coming out. The night she died he + Zephie each had a lounge in the kitchen + he hadnt lain down two minutes before he went into a fit. Zephie heard him + jumped but he fell to the floor before he cached [sic] him. We were afraid of that when we saw how he felt. Mother has got pretty tired. Lucy is about the same. Aunt Nellie came over as far as my house yesterday to hear how Betty was. We saw the team + Riley went up. The boys saw Aunt Lillie over to Quakertown. We saw Uncle Alden Friday. He said his folks were better than they had been. I am afraid it will overcome Sadie to hear of Bethís death though Aunt Lillie thought she was rather expecting it, but it came pretty sudden to most people. I hope or I wish that this lesson might not go unlearned by all of us but I feel afraid of it. It seems as if we cant come to any understanding with father unless we say we were all in the wrong + he all in the right + we cant do that. He is terrible sensitive + it seems as if everything we say to explain or better things he misunderstands + it only makes it worse so I dont see we can do anything only with ourselves + God. We felt as if we ought to have prayers but he dont [sic] seem to want to, though he has consented when we got right down to it but it seems no use to try to keep it up when he has no more interest in it. When we speak of it he speaks of the things of his world that need attention. It would seem good enough if we could be united as a family ought to be, but it seems to me both sides will have to condescend + not feel that it is all on the other side. I want to learn my part + do everything God wants me to no matter how humbling. Well, I must close with much love + hope you can come over + stay awhile soon. Mother + the children send their love to you.

Alice

 

 


 

Dec. 1, 1908

131 Center St.

Dorchester, Mass.

 

Dear Mother,

 

I have been meaning to write to you every week since got up here but I donít find as much spare time here as I did up on the farm. The children come home to dinner and I have to have them ready promptly so they wonít be late. Then I have a good many more people dropping in to take up my time. Sundays I go to church and take the children and so that day is taken up pretty well too.

 

When I got out here Arthur had all the furniture unpacked the carpets laid and rooms put to rights. My mother met me at the depot as he had to preach a funeral sermon that day in Bridgewater. She had cooked some food for us and had a nice warm fire going so things were all nice and homelike for us. I appreciated it all very much. I got Joe into school the next Monday, and the boys are all doing quite well in school now. Joe donít like to go very well but I am in hopes he will when he gets older.

 

I have had a call from Laura and Jessie since I was here. They seem like good girls and I think they are trying to do right, but I canít help believing they are deceived. I was in to their meeting for a little while last Sunday eve and I am sure that the spirit which was in operation there was not the spirit of Christ. I donít feel to pass judgment on any person as it is not our right to do so but I cannot see how their belief can be made to harmonize with the scriptures in hardly any way. They make water baptism of no consequence and they teach and act contrary to many New Testament laws. Still they claim they live from day to day without sin. The girls expected to leave for Maine today as they feel their mission in Boston is completed. I had quite a little talk with them and was in hopes to have Laura make me a visit but her time seemed taken up with her missionary labors. She looks so much like you, or as I think you must have looked when you was young. Jessie has changed in her looks quite a good deal and Mrs. Tosky [Totzke] the lady with them is a woman of charming presence. I have no doubt that their belief has done them all much good. I think the way they profess to live is the way we should all strive to live but when we attain such a degree of perfection as they claim I am quite sure that we wont be suffered to remain on this wicked old globe long. We read of Enochs city [sic] being caught up and some others being changed into spiritual beings and it seems to me that God would treat his perfected children the same in one age as in another. In striving to be perfect we must not have a human ideal or be satisfied with what we are able to attain in human strength but go on. That is the way it seems to me at least and those that are able to endure to the end will be saved. The others will have the rewards a just and kind Heavenly Father sees is due them.

 

I see that all three of the Holiness girls had had small pox. It seems strange God should suffer his perfected ones to have that loathsome disease does it not. I got a couple of papers of that faith with articles on the gift of tongues. As they came from Conn. I thought they were from Lucy or you.

 

Viola is watching me write this. She says she sends you a big hug and a kiss. Arthur is at Plymouth. He went there last Sat. He was home for Thanksgiving, the first time he has been home on that day for several years. I had all my folks in to dinner so with all the children it made quite a company of us but not as many as was at your place that time of course.

 

Well I have been several days getting this letter finished. I only get time to write as I take it, and there has been a change in the weather but up to now I never saw such warm pleasant weather that I remember of. I have been able to wash and get my clothes dry every Monday since I have been here. Well I guess if I am to mail this today I must close. I send love to all in the house. Hope you will be able to read this and answer soon. Goodbye from your daughter,

Josie

 

 


 

[Typed letter; letterhead:]

PHILLIPSí MUSIC CO.

MUSIC PUBLISHERS

DORCHESTER, MASS.

131 Centre Street.

 

June 1, 1911

 

Dear Mother:--

I just returned from Maine where I have been for some time doing missionary work. Reached home this morning, from Stonington, Me., where we have nearly 250 members and a nice chapel. It is quite cool there and one notices the contrast at once.

 

It will be necessary for me to go away now to be gone some time, and so I will write while the opportunity affords. I expect to preach in Brockton this summer a part of the time. Our church has purchased about thirty acres of sea-shore land between Onset and Wareham, on Buzzards bay, and intend to hold Reunions there every year. This year it begins July 29 and closes August 13. We have been having large attendance in the past. One Reunion we had 558 registered campers, and there were hundreds who attended meetings beside who did not stay there nights.

 

The Boston and other newspapers have written long articles about our new camp, and there is more interest aroused this year than in years gone by, so we shall probably have a great many visitors.

 

You need not trouble yourself about the books, as it is too much work for you. When it is to so I may come and get them, though it is uncertain when that will be as my work is not in that direction at present.

 

I had a letter from Nellie saying they had not yet sold their place. Josie would prefer living on a farm if my work did not take me away from home. It is better here for the present. Wendell is working for The Ivers and Pond Piano Company, in Boston. They like him so one of them told me who was out to my house one evening a while ago.

 

We are feeling as well as usual and hope you are too. I shall be glad to hear from you as often as you can write. If there is anything I can get for you let me know.

 

With much love from us all,

Arthur

 

 


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