Month: November 2013

  • Discord over Inheritance

    Below, is an excerpt from a letter, postmarked Jan 13, probably 1834 – a few months after the deaths of Horton and Hannah Howard in the Cholera epidemic. The letter is written by 20 yr old John Howard to his brother in law Samuel Forrer,  and refers to John’s half brothers Henry (41,) Joseph (36,) […]

  • Scarlet Fever – a Fearful Disease

    Before antibiotics, diseases were serious – sore throats and scarlet rash (or scarlet fever) were often fatal. It is hard sometimes to read these old letters – I find myself growing fond of my ancestors, their siblings, their friends, and the friends’ families, and grieve for their losses. In December 1870, Joan Murray (a friend […]

  • A Soldier’s Complaint

    My great-great-great-grandmother, Mary Howard Affleck was not alone in criticizing the government over management of the Civil War army. The following excerpt is from a letter written to Sarah Forrer by Joan Murray (a close friend of Mary and her sister, Sarah F.) Joan’s son-in-law, Charlie, was a full Major in Company S of the […]

  • Fourth of July – 1869

    written from Bridgeport, Ohio, July 4th 1869 “……nobody home but Dr,. Mary and myself – none of us, I believe, in a very festive mood. It don’t seem at all like the 4th of July. There was some kind of a celebration yesterday at the fairground on the Island of the “lower million” principally, I […]