1868 Letters

July 26, 1868 letter to Lois Clark from Kate Chaffee

July 26, 1868

To: Lois Clark

From: Kate Chaffee, Waverly, MI

Was glad to hear from the family because she didn’t know who to ask for help when it was needed. Mother Chaffee was there now but wanted to go to Jed’s and then she and the children would be alone as Jeff was off with the threshing machine. Didn’t think she would need help until the middle of August. Was hoping her mother would come with Oscar, but they didn’t and she hadn’t seen them since February.

Waverly July 26 1868

Dear Cousin I received your kind letter this last week was very glad to hear from you all fer it had been a long time since we have heard from you. There ________ your letter came very opportunely too on our account fer we knew not where to find any one to help when it is needed fer it is very scarce here. I had thought of you but thought it would be useless to ask you to come. I do not think I shall need any one untill the midle of August for I am quite well.[1] Mother Chaffee[2] is here now but wants to go to Jeds this week. Then the children[3] and I will be alone most of the time as Jeff[4] is off with the threshing machine. We will send you the money by the first of the month or some time this week but to morrow is our mail day and I will send this along fer fear you would think I did not want you and go some where else fer if help is as scarce there as here you can not remain long at home even if you was obliged to. I looked some fer Mother[5] to come when Oscar[6] came this way to go to work but neither of them came. I have not seen any of them since Feb, and I have looked fer your folk all most every week since may and they have not come either. Please dont you give us the slip with all the rest and Lois[7] you com at your own convenience about fetching Wille[8] unless you think he will be a trouble to you you can fetch him all the same as ever. Give my love to all of the folks there and tell them I shall come and pay all of their visits if they are not carefull. No more this time.

Goodby Kate Chaffee

Myrtie[9] has a pencil and has been helping me write you will see. Let us know what time you will be in Paw Paw so that we can meet you there.



[1] Kate was pregnant with her third child; Minnie J. Chaffee was born September 2, 1868

[2] Rebecca (Bradway) Chaffee

[3] Her two older children, Stephen and Mrytie

[4] Her husband, Thomas Jefferson Chaffee Jr.

[5] Alfleda (Starr) Keith

[6] Her brother, James “Oscar” Keith

[7] Lois (Keith) Clark

[8] Lois’ son, William Byron Clark

[9] Myrtie Laverne Chaffee, who was two years old

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