Experience's Children

Brown Family Stories

Matilda Brown

Letter from Matilda Catherine Pierce Brown

to her daughters, 28 January 1923

Jan 28 1923
Sulphur Spgs Ark
Dear Alice + Lee + Stella

I though I would try to write I have been sick last night + today but am feeling a little better I rendered lard yes had it all to cut + pack from the smoke house + my wood all to pack + it bursted me down so I was vomiting last night my head nearly killing me Alf is sick cant be up but a bite at a time he may be taken the flu we are

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alone I cant do this work if I had to die. I recon you knew all of Jims was down with the flu + Ray went over there last Teus to help do the work & he took down down Wed. I believe it was + has been Alfred bad all of them the Dr was out there lots of times Alf has went over there 2 times went yes eve of course went in so he may be taken he dont cough none hardly his head feels better I gave him salts he got so chilled comeing home I though maby it was neuralzy I don't know. ever body has had the flu nearly Mrs Lally Clarence Mary

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Mosier came over to waite on her mother + took the flu had the Dr lots Jim + Ray was some better if they dont take a back set Mae was up James L hadnt taken it. Well how are you all well I hope I have weared my self sick about you all Alice how is Lela Mr Drayer said she was better + I hope she will get strong. You must write to Dan + Sis + tell them we all have been down with the flu but are all on the mend I cant write

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Alf is weak + takes on so I am afraid he is taken the flu all this stock to feed + the horses + cattel on the hill I cant do it I am still weak so short of breath. We are out of coffee nearly + Just out of coal oil no one to go to town no one to cut a stick of wood. have you all got well from the flu or feel weak like I do my back hurts so. I dont know how I am to get the sauceage ground he left out a big shoulder besides the Joll + all the trimmings my back nearly kills me I have moor lard to render. I could get Ott Lips

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to help but they would all come + I aint able to waite on them. Mr knowls + Mrs knowl came over + Mr help Alf kill the hogs she has a sweet baby I wanted to get Mr Knowls to help make the sauceage but Alf alowed we could make it but now you see well I want to be down there with you all but you see my chance Ray over at Ji sick Alf sick well I will waite untill tomorrow no telling when I can get this off to the box

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well Mr Knowls came this morn + maid the sauceage over 8 gal I wish you all some of it I cant hardly stand it to know you havent got any I am going to send this by Mr Knowls Alf is better I think I believe it is neuralzy but he though he had the flu he wanted dinner ask for it so it is not the flu but he may take it yet. Ray all is better this rainer is hard on people that get the flu good by with love to all Mother To Alice Stella Lee - all helo Lela Robert John F Geraldine write soon + let me know how you all are

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see also: Matilda Pierce Brown's obituary

Letter from Leora Belle Brown Hamby

to her sons, 14 December 1935


Noel MO
Dec 14 1935

Dear boys,

Am going to try to get this mailed to day. We are having a warm sprinkle this morning dont know what it will be by night. I have tried to answer all question. John is putting up a cobble stone store room for Mrs. (Elander) Lucas the one that husband is in the hospitle. he is putting up the stone work. some one else doing the carpenter work I got goods and made me a pair of overhalls and jumper - and now I am out of shoes. Wont I look good in overhalls jumper and bear footed You aught to see all the new tricks Buster has lurned he sure can put them over. no one taught him either. The other night I was reading he wonted his supper. he kept hoging me I didnt pay any atention to him he just sit up and slaped the paper out of my hands

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he sure is some dog. John went hunting with them thinksgiving day. When John picked up the gun, he ran his nose up and down the gun. then he gan to jump he would jump up to John shoulder. Now say he isent some dog. May G. is getting fat. She is pretty. Prs. G. got her a new May Tag. We washed on it this week it sure is nice and gets the clothes clean in a few minuits. don't have to boil either I never do get to see May she dosent come and I dont go. Frank is up to his place she has to stay close home Mrs (Salsman Bino) got her a Maytag to. well I must get this to box it is all way mail time when I get my work done up. And then I am to tired to write of evenings. If I had of knowen John was going to send that P Hunnie collect. I would of throwen it in the ditch. Gearldine paid for the pares Dont you kids

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leave any of your good clothes scattered a round. becareful when you open thoose buckets. dont ruin theme. Stella can can tomatoes in theme. And dont forget to bring M.K. I can turn her loose and Buster & Jonie will see after her. those picture were good. I wish I could see Alice while she is fat. Lela is quite a girl I think M.K. looks like Stella did when she was a baby. you be sure and let Stella have
the Noel paper -
Lovingly Mom.

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(Questions Answered)
Glen didnt come out and ask us to take the cow. he said that they found 4 young calves at one time in the field. said the pasture was short and that the cow. had to be fed if they hadent of wanted us to take her they wouldent of come over and ask what you wanted done with her - Mr Prichard past a way this time. No the weels dont live on Hooge place. I dont know who Charley P. married. P hay on Joplin market is No A 1 from $6 to $8.00 Alfalfa hay $12.00 $18.00 We had two tons of straw bailed. I bought 3 tuns of Alfalfa. from De. S. paid $15. delivered. one tun for Robert one for Gearldine one for my self. I am going to get some prairie later on - we havent had any winter yet gues we will get it in Jan. Feb. The Rock qu. is working I dont know how steady

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I deposited your check and ask Mrs. Williams if I wrote a check for feed would it be o.k. she said yes so I did

I told you. that I paid the feed Bill couldnt you see that the bills were marked paid. I sent them so you could see how much feed they eat. Mrs. Williams checked your account some time a go I thought Gearldine sent it to you - you surly dont read the letters. I will try to finish this to night. I think Danty gives quite a little milk she has a nice hefier calf. bucket fed it drinks milk eat brand wheat. and my little maple tree you brought me last summer. eat it to ground. I sold one of your heifers Robert. kept fat she will be fresh in June. you aught to know when fafa will be fresh. she bred while you were hear. I dont guess you can read this I started to rap some papers and thought I would answer these qu. so dident even sit down. wrote standing Claude came in last night. Robert that is offel what you said a bout the lions. I know you are disgraced the family.

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"A True Story Concerning a Baby Born in Poverty"

by Alice Sarah Brown Wiley
The Browns

This baby was born on Sept 7, 1893 to Mr and Mrs Alford Brown, who came from East Tenn. in Green County. The father and mother were nineteen years old when married. They had a son born to them in one year after mairage, his name was Johnie R Newton, he was born Aug 29, 1880. They lived with Alford Browns grandmother Granny Henery, for a year after their marriage, then they moved to a small place about half mile from Granma Henerys. Lived there until after Alice Sary was born and was a year old then they moved to a place near Anderson Missouri the place was called (Thief Hollow) In those days the country was wild and there were many thieves, People were poor and the men that didnt have jobs would steal from others. This place where they moved was a one roomed log house dubbed with lime. We lived there for a year then moved to another place where there was more farming ground. It was on the banks of Indian creek and mother would go down to the creek or river to wash cloths. By that time Leora Bell Brown was born Dec. 4, 1884. That next summer was where Mother Brown would go down to the river to wash cloths As the water for all purposes had to be carried from the river. We had a dog a big Shepard that was bitten by a dog that came to the river where mother and Mrs Rose were washing this dog had rabies and our dog Shep went mad with rabies in three months I believe it was any way in that fall. Stece Munison our neighbor came and shot our beautiful black Shepard dog. Dad thot a lot of him and he wouldnt shoot him. My brother Johnie and I climed up in the barn loft to keep from being bitten by him. We were there playing. Leora a sister was a baby and she was still wearing long dresses, I (Alice) remembers how she looked. She had long black hair and was a small baby. Mother sometimes would go to the river to wash diapers for Leora and the water was cold.

She took rheumatism and couldnt even lift a skilet or wring a dish cloth. So Mrs. Rose came and helped do the work. One day mother fell and I (Alice) was so scared I tried to lift her up put my hands under her head but of coarse I believe she had to stay there until dad came from the field. Then Mrs Rose came and stayed for a while, I was 3 years old when this happened. Then when I was 5 years old we moved to Mill Creek where we lived until we went from home. Brother Claude Brown now lives at the old home place. It is a beautiful place in the Ozark Hills. The land most of it except about Seventeen acres was to be cleared off before we could have enough land to cultivate. So I was old enough Johnie and I to help with the work. Brother Johnie passed away when he was about eight and a half years old I (Alice) and Johnie were real powels and I had to quite school after he passed away I had no one to walk to school with me and in those days the school children were real mean to the smaller children. This distance to school was one and a half miles by guess. My first teachers name was (Fanny Dean) I loved her very much I did not get to school after Johnie passed away for about three years I was nine years old by that time a new building was put up for a school and it was a one room school house. There was a big heating stove in the middle of the building and we used fuel to heat the building the boys carried wood, our drinking water from a spring near the old Forney place. James Leonard Brown was born Dec 6 1887. He was born before Johnie R Newton passed a way, and Johnie used to hold him in his lap while mother worked. William Mathew Brown was born Sept. 10, 1890. He was a fat baby and was subject to colds often croop. He was afraid of mothers brother Newton Pierce because Uncle Nute had a bald head. Now Will has a Bald head like his uncle Newton Pierce but he is a nice looking man. Claude Oscar McKinley was born Feb 27, 1897, But I have left out where Ethel Elizabeth Brown was born Sept 7, 1893 at the bigining of this story I told where she was born. Im trying to take them in rotation, but have made a mistake. Stella Therisa Brown was born April 19, 1900, Raymond Bert Brown was born on May 26, 1904. Cathrine Ethel Elizabeth Brown was born Sept. 7, 1893 as I said before where we were very poor. Dad was ill for five years we thought he would pass on. He had something wrong with his liver calledager capy a hard not in his liver we had some stock but we could only get two and a half dollars out of a year old calf so that all went for Drs bills. Finally a neighbor told us about a Dr. called Doctor Reason he lived in Noel 6 miles distance. He made 2 or 3 trips buggy and horse travel. He brought 6 or 8 pts of old fashioned cod liver oil and dad took all of it in a couple months he now was able to eat and work a little after five years of suffering. We had a black horse and he was blind and had to eat grass along the fence rows while we ate a cold dinner as we had to rent land and I had to take our dinners but when I was nine years old mother told me to cook their dinners and send them to the field to them by [...] much of a dinner I could put up as we didnt have much to get but we were very thankful for what we had. Mother was a woman of prayer and she thought some day we would have more to live on. All the old timers had a hard time to keep the wolf from their doors. Ethel wasnt a pretty baby but she grew into a beautiful brown eyed long haired girl. She had very few cloths but would stand before the glass and primp until she looked real nice. She was always full of ambition. After she was old enough to work. She was punished for things she shouldnt of been punished for. When mother was pregnant with Ethel Elizabeth she was ill most all the time. A lady by the name of Mrs Diggs that lived a mile from us would come and talk to mother and encourage her. This Lady Mrs Diggs was a ministers wife I believe they had six children the oldest son Bruce became a minister and came back to Mill Creek many years after his folks left there. Where they lived later a family by the name of Correll moved there from Iowa for Mrs Corrells health the Corrells had one son Frank a school teacher and two daughters Cora and Pearl that became school teachers I (Alice) went to school with both of them. Pearl lives in Florida now and Cora in Okla. both of their husbands have passed on. Mr. Correll was our S. School supt. for many years. Where his days were few he would stand and talk to us with tears in his eyes. His was was so much help to me when I first became a Christian. I had decided when I was nineteen years old that I wanted to be a christian and serve the Lord. I believe Ethel Elizabeth became a christian when she was fifteen years old. A minister came to Mill Creek to hold a revival and his name was Rev Manning. He preached the old time Salvation and there were about seven of we school girls that went to the revival but I had been converted before that at home out by our old Spring house July 25 about nine o'clock. I had known for a year I needed to be saved but God has a time and a place for each of us. The Lord said to it seemed in a small voice go up higher. I tried to pray where I was but I couldnt and soon as I obeyed the Lord and went up on a place where he told me to go there was the time and God showed me a bright light that lead from earth to heaven then this power of God fell on me and I shouted for joy. I knew the work was done never have I regreted that I made the decision to let God used me to his Glory.

Ethel Elizabeth Brown married when she was seventeend years old. But she cried for week before she married to Will Brown no relation to Ethel but a school mate. She wanted to get an education in Des Moines Iowa but her intended cried and said if she went he would kill hisself so she decided she would marry instead of going to high school. But later she and Will her husband separated. He left her with three little girls Irene was eleven years old so maybe she wouldn't have been called little. She ahd to go to work selling ice cream near where they lived. Ethels husband married a high school girl and oh the tears she shed over him, her pillow wet with tears many times. When I went to visit her thirty eight years ago she met me at the door pale as a corpse. I didnt know Will had left the family when he didnt come home in the evening I said Ethel when does Will get home and she in a low voice said he does not get home at all. Then she had a sick headache she tried to tell me the story why he had left and it ended up in a sick headache. There were the sweet girls three of them, beautiful children. Barbara a baby was really beautiful. A mean woman can do any thing with a man. They dont care just so their wishes are gratified. It broke my heart to see my sister Ethel with three children left and not enought to eat. She had to get out and work scrub wood work at hard work all day long. So she asked God to help her get a job where she could sit down and work so she worked for the Northland Milk co. for fourteen years before she became Credit Manager for some years before she married Dr Guy E Romans a Dentist. Ethel has been very happy sence this marriege and they work together.


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