Letter between John Greer and his brother William

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Letter from John Greer to his Brother William Harkness Greer 1879

Words in italics I am unsure of, "........." I can't make out.


Munroe township, Hamilton Co,
Chapman Co Neb, Oct 20th 1879

Dear William
I received your wifes letter and yours in due time, was glad to hear of you all being in good health, and everything moving along so prosperous. I was sorry to hear by a letter that Sophia got from one of Mr Droogns girls and also from Dr Stanton of old Mr Elson's death. was there much strange on him and did he keep sensible to the last? Where is he buried? I always thought a great deal of him? from first I became acquainted I had to heave a sigh when I was bidding him farewell. There has come a great change on myself for the worse since I came to this wild country. I feel my health giving way fast, I had a severe pain in my right side for a considerable time but it has ceased and in its stead my feet and legs and .......... are ............. I feel ...................?occasional break down of the condition but I am ........ting it cheerfully, life to me here is no enjoyment.

I suppose you had a pleasant time when Dr Stanton was visiting you at Magnolia? I had two letters from him since his return; he is still very kind in sending me Irish Newspapers. I see in them anything of importance that transpires in and around Cookstown and Stewartstown and neighbouring places. There are a good many things in them very interesting to me, did Samuel visit you in September as you expected? He sent me several papers I thought he had been at Magnolia when he sent them. I see he does not care for writing but not withstanding he is very friendly and kind I hope he may get his day in in peace. This is a very wild country out here; they pay no respect to the Sabbath in general more than any other day of the week; during the harvest they were out at work in the fields; with their horses; and reaping machines cutting down the grain, and hauling it in same as any other day; and I have heard of some plowing on the Sabbath; yesterday ....day the shots were going off at wild geese on the river all day and during the night in quick succession. The wild geese are as plenty here at present as .... you saw crows in Ireland. They are worth shooting for the feathers; but their flesh is black and not good looking to eat; but some people would eat anything in the shape of meat; there are a great many prairie chicks here; they are nice eating. This great wide river has been almost dry for the last two months, people can go over it with their teams and on feet; its a great ........ from this side to Chapman, Willie and Thomas, are working out with .......... at 13 and 1/2 dollars each per month since the harvest. There was a dollar and 1/2 per day driving the harvest but it only lasted a few days being all done by machinery. Samuel had to stay there all summer to haul water from the river for the cattle to drink; he is digging a stable at present for the cattle to be in during the winter months. Thomas and he dug a nice cellar within a few yards of the house 12 ft by 6 and 8 feet in depth and put a good substantial roof on it

Its a splendid place for keeping mild and butter in during the summer; and I suppose it will be equally good for the winter. we have it ventilated by a small window in the one end which can be shut if necessary in winter. Its useful for holding a great many things which would .....mber the house The boys have bought a waggon; so they can haul anything with the ...... now that is required, Sophia has gone today to a place called Aurora, 12 miles from here, to cook/look in a place where they keep boarders; if she doesn't like it she will likely make a short visit as she is hard to please. There is a terrible look out here for girls; you would think it was gold dust the people are searching after. They cannot be got. I think and speak in the inside, that there was 20 conveyances came for Sophia here since we came and some of them went away displeased because she would not go with them. At a great many of the houses here any person at the ...... in a genteel way not care.......

for living in; as they are not like anything that you and I saw in Ireland of farmers houses, in poor accommodations here and almost all the houses are infested with bugs and fleas; so that to sleep at night is impossible. during the time we were in Wilsons I really thought we would be devoured. You might as well sit down on an ant hill and think to have ease on it; as to ly on Wilsons beds and think to get sleep. I am a long time on the earth now; and the like of five weeks we spent in Wilsons I never experienced and we had them here with us in the b..es that was put into an old straw stable at Wilsons, and we thought we would never get rid of them, but by the dint of good washing and cleaning up we got shot of them, but that scalding and washing has to be repeated every few days. the boys coming home occasionally brings them on their clothes; and a never cleaning up

It was no wonder that I headed the letter I sent to Clarence with purgatory as I thought that so called place could not be much worse. And the one I sent to your good wife I headed ....e hill; as they tell me here if you plant little trees and wait to they grow you will have fire wood. The Wilson family and us has been at a very bad understanding since ever we left his house; it began about a shepherds dog that John Nesbit brought with him from ....... and because he would not leave him with him he blamed us for putting it in his head to not give him, and him and them stirred up and got into a rage. Nancy Ann said she could not believe my wifes oath. so from ... to ..... we are now two distinct families not speaking nor has no correspondence whatever. so you may imagine whether I can feel much contentment if any. I blame him in a great measure for being the instigation of us leaving the farm at the

time he was there he kept constantly thinking that we were not wanted there; and that if you had us out of the house you would keep no person in it but would get a man a few days at a time to work. We thought that perhaps Clarence would like to come and live in it and manage the farmland therefore we thought it hard for us to be the means of keeping him out of it. It also made the boys that they did not come for working at Magnolia as usual. He kept on writing to Sophia for us to go out these for that they were all loosing their time stopping there and more over they were not wanted, so that he kept up the fire that he had lighted ....... he got us to leave. I believe his motive was he wanted money; he wanted us to send him out 20 dollars and he would secure a farm for us We found out since we come here that he could have done no such a thing for the person that the land is to be for must be there personally and declare his intentions by oath

before they will take the first payment for the land Have you ever been at the farm since we left? has Clarence got any wheat put in there and where? did the Timothy that we sowed in the field in ....ing kindest where the wheat grew; cut this season or did he graze it? did he let the land that we had fenced off for a new lane to the house stand; or did he change his mind and alter it ?There was a great many things when I was there that I would like to have done that I could not get accomplished therefor it made me feel like a fish out of the water, not in my proper element. write me any alteration or improvement that is occasionally made on that old farm, as I will always take a deep interest in it. Give my best respects to Austin ............to M>Mc.... to William Holo...... to Captain ...tts to ...... mistress to old Sam Bald..... and all there who I got acquainted with - a letter from you after will be satisfactory to me Write when this reaches you

Yours truely

John Greer