January 14, 1858
To: Luke Keith, Galesburg, MI
From: Charles R. Cridland, Delaware, KS
He is astonished that Lyman Earl should pretend to have any claim against him. He has written a letter to Mr. Taylor relating the whole matter which he would like Luke to read. The goods that Luke sent in September finally arrived. Writes about the weather in Kansas and the crops.
Delaware Jan 14, 1858.
Let Taylor read this
I got yours of Dec 21“ yesterday. I had written to you a few days before, which of course you had not recd, but I hope it has got to you by this. I am astonished that Ly Earle should pretend to have any claim against me any further than the apple trees which he can have.
I have written to Mr Taylor which I enclose to you as I wish you to read it. I have related the whole matter between Earle and myself and am willing to qualify that it is a true statement of the case. All I want you to do in the matter is to take these papers to Taylor and have him read them and send the money he has to me, or hand it to you and you will take the trouble to see that is such as will do to send or get it changed. But I suppose that any money that is good in Michigan is good here. I shall have to sell it for gold as paper will not pay what I owe, and I should like such as is as near par I can get it. Paper goes in town for trade, but in the country but few people will take it and I borrowed the gold to pay the freight with. When I went to vote on ‘lection day I heard that the things you sent had come. The boat finally made another trip and delivered the cargo. The charges were $6.80. If they could have come in Sept they would not have cost half as much. It seems strange that in the dryest season the river is the fullest, but now when streams are full in other places, the it is so low that navigation is very difficult, and consequently freights are high. We have had no such weather here as you tell of. We had one cold night in Nov when the Therm got down to 16 above zero. It is very dry and the bottom of my spring is as dry as a powder horn. Almost all the rain that has fallen in Kansas fell on my corn when I was cutting it in Oct. I think if it could rain in Kansas it might snow, but it dont know how to do either. It is exceedingly strange to me. What rain does come always falls on the same day of the week, it never rains between monday and saturday. The middle of the week is always fair. On Saturday and Sunday it rains now and then just a sprinkle.
C R Cridland
The potatoes you sent were part frozen. I suppose they were some extra good kind. Wish you would let me know what you call them. The few small potatoes I brought with me yielded so well that I had some to sell. Corn and potatoes will grow here and do well without any rain, but oats and peas want rain and I think there are no better Apples in the world than grows within ten miles of here. The kind I call neverfail is the main crop. They are a splendid apple keeping all winter but they are worth a dollar a bushel now on the other side of the river. They have been 50 to 75 cents. I have had a pretty hard row to hoe in Kansas, but I dont feel like giving out a bit. As soon as I can get squared up a little I am going to hunt up some land. Some of my neighbors are out looking for places and when they come back I shall learn from them where to get a good locality.
I was a good deal prejudised against land without timber but I find it a great deal easier to buy fence than it would be to clear timber land, so I have taken a prairie claim, but there is a good quary of sand stone on it enough to build all a man would want.
 Lyman Earl
 Adieu; French for goodbye