May 13, 1841 letter to Charles Luke Keith Jr. from Marion Sprague

May 13, 1841

To: Charles Luke Keith Jr., Galesburg, MI

From: Marion Sprague, Pavilion, NY

Is replying to Luke’s request for an update on “all the gals and boys” and relates the recent marriages and deaths in the area. She went to school in Leroy and boarded with Mrs. Belding, the teacher.

Scan of 1841-05-13 Marion Sprague to Charles Luke Keith

Pavilion, May 13, 1841

Mr Keith

We ****ing[1] good health, cold weather, and a plenty of water besides a great many other good things. You ask me to write about all the gals and boys but it would take me from now till next winter to write about them all but I will begin. Altherd goes to see Juliet once in a while and they say he is stepping up and Peter Coon walks up to Uncle Amos’es pretty often and poor lib and I cant get any beaue,s. Captain Crofoot comes here once in a while and Mother[2] says he comes to see me but he will come here and stay two hours upon the streach, and not so much as ask if I am at home, and if that looks like coming to see me, I dont know what looks like coming to see Mother, and I made him angry the other day too, and she is dreadful fraid he wont come again. Mr Belding and his family have moved to Rochester. Eliza came up last saturday she sais they are very home sick. I presume you have heard that George Mathews is married to Betsey Hannun.[3] If you have not you will now. Sylvenus is keeping company with Louisa but I dont know whether it will be a match or not. Gid Crofoot kept company with Bird all last winter and Eliza told me that he staid there as often as twice a week besides being there almost every day. High times for a girl 16 last March I reckon. I went to school to Mrs Belding in Leroy last winter. She had a small school only six schollars besides her own children, the three Miss Sweetland’s from Stafford, the two Miss Freeman’s from Bethany and myself. We had a very pleasant school. I enjoyed myself first rate and was not homesick a bit. I boarded with Mrs Belding. They had five boarders besides. I have not danced a step since last October and I have not been a visiting with **** young people but three times since that time. I wish **** come and see us to day for we look real slick. We took up our carpet yesterday and scoured our floor and swept the wall so it looks almost as slick as though it had been whitewashed but it made my arms so lame that I cant hardly use them and my hand trembles so that I can scarcely write at all but what you cant read you must guess at. Married by the Rev Mr ______ Mr Julius Hurlburt of Moscow to Wife Dorothy Innis[4] of this place. Also by the Rev Mr Kelsey Mr Simeon Church to Miss Eliza Hubbard[5] all of this place. Adaline is teaching school at Ronoke this summer and Betsey at Bayleys Mills. Harriet Scranton was here last Friday. She has not got married yet and George Tomlinson[6] says she is not like to be, but she says never mind time enough yet. Jason Miller is attending school in Wyoming this summer. John Hasey is in your part of the world somewhere. They expect him home in June.

Asels folks have got a boy. Aunt Lou will tell you about it when she comes. Samantha’s health is very poor. Jerushe[7] was at meeting last sunday. She said she was well but she looked pale and has a very bad cough. There are a great many people sick in this place this spring with the meazles. There were three funerals here last sunday one at the school house on the hill at ten oclock a boy of Mr Forbes died of the meazles and scarlet fever, two at the Babtist meeting house at three oclock Mr Bisby’s[8] youngest boy died of the meazles and Mrs Gillmore.[9] She had been sick several weeks with the dropsy but she had got better so that she sat up considerable. Thursday morning she sat up and dressed her babe. Friday morning she had a ****ack of the numb palsy and died saturday about noon. ****ore drinks as bad as ever. To day is Thursday and he has been drunk two days this week already. Where he gets his liquor I dont know for there is no one in the place that will let him have any. Mariah Barret was buried two weeks ago last sunday. She had the consumption. There has been five buried in this yard within one month. The Methodist meeting house has been moved into this place. It stands where the old wagon shop stood. Mr Coburn has bought the house that stood up near Mr Chilsons and moved it onto the corner of Mr Sanders lot. Pa[10] has set out a row of maple trees from the farm to Mr Whitney’s about six feet from the fence. When they grow I expect they will look very nice. I guess I have written all the news. I dont think of any more. O yes Robert Snow preached in this place all day last sunday. What under the sun has become of your gal. We have made up our minds that you have thrown it away or that it dont know much for you dont never say any thing about it. Now if you dont write me a letter to pay for this I never will write you another now you see if I do. Tell katy I should like to have her write me a letter and tell grandma[11] that I have got to be very steady and they all say that I shall be an old maid. Give my love to all the folks and write about Jane, Caroline, Harvey and all the children and all the rest of the folks.

Good by



[1] **** indicates missing word/s due to a hole in the pages

[2] Luke’s sister, Martha “Patty” (Keith) Sprague

[3] A search of reveals that George L. Matthews married Elizabeth or Libbie Hannum in Dubuque, Iowa on December 3, 1840

[4] A search of reveals that Julius Hurlburt married Dorothy Annis March 4, 1839 in Warsaw, New York

[5] A search of reveals that Simeon Church married Eliza Hubbard on April 4, 1841 in Covington, New York

[6] Marion’s future husband; they married on April 6, 1845

[7] Perhaps this is Jerusha Crittenden. Luke was engaged to her; however, when a new girl, Minerva Payson, came to town he broke off the engagement and in 1838 married Minerva. She died August 29, 1843 and Luke then married Jerusha on July 25, 1847

[8] A search of reveals that John Bisbey, age 7, died May 8, 1841, in Pavilion, Genesee County, New York

[9] A search of reveals that Mehitable (Smead) Gilmore, age 33, the wife of William Gilmore, died May 8, 1841, and is buried in Pavilion Cemetery, Pavilion, New York

[10] James Sprague Jr.

[11] Hannah (Willcutt) Keith, Luke’s mother

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s