1863 Letters

July 28, 1863 letter to Luke Keith from George Tomlinson

July 28, 1863

To: Luke Keith, Galesburgh, MI

From: George Tomlinson, Pavilion, NY

George mostly writes about his harvest, but also mentions the land transaction deal with Mr. Babcock, which has been the subject of many of his previous letters. His wife, Marion, finishes the letter with updates on various people.

Pavilion July 28 1863

C. L. Keith Esq

Grand mother says when those friends get ready to start let us know that we may meet them at the R.R. Also she says _____ Erastus Dewey called her a few days ago – he lives at North East Pa. – he has lived there eight years. He has got a big belly. Mrs. Dr. Fay[1] died a few weeks ago – disease malignant Erysipelas.

We have got our wheat cut & part of it in the barn – have got most through haying – mean to get through this week.

Our hay is rather light – wheat is fair. We have got a grand growth of Beans – mean to have a machine invented to pull them.

Have got one partly built – a huge thing – it looks as tho it might pull beans or – well I keep it stabled nights.

You may give Babcock two or three years time on the Ballance if he wants it by his giving a mortgage on the farm & I will give him a deed of the house & lot. If he does not think best to make such a transfer of the securities I shall think to get another payment in the shortest time practicable.

I think it wont do to wait any longer – he may make new securities or pay up.

Phebe[2] will write the gossip if there is any.

(The following was written by Marion) No gossips that I think of. Mrs Fay was taken sick Monday morn died Sunday morning. The family did not know that the Dr considered her dangerous till about three hours before she died. Tell Lucy to write us about Helen[3] as soon as you receive this. We are glad to hear our folks think of coming down here. Hope they wont disappoint us. We will meet them at Batavia if they let us know the time. If not – the stage comes every day starts at ten gets here at noon. Erastus wants you to write him, and he will answer. He says Mr Merrills family are well, and Maria is the nicest girl in the place. Father Tomlinson[4] is in LeRoy boarding. Will buy a place as soon as he finds one to suit – could buy half the village if he had money enough.


Geo. Tomlinson


[1] A search of FindAGrave.com shows that Freelove Matilda Fay, the wife of Dr. Warren Fay, died in 1863 and is buried in Pavilion Cemetery, Pavilion, New York. No further information was found, however, to support that this could be the Mrs. Fay mentioned in this letter

[2] Luke’s niece, and George’s wife, Marion (Sprague) Tomlinson; perhaps Phebe was her nickname. The handwriting is identical to other letters (4-7-1851 & 8-21-1861) written by Marion

[3] Believe she is referring to Luke’s nieces, half-sisters, Lucy Irene Lee and Helen (Bradley) York

[4] John Tomlinson

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