Letters from Humphrey Fosmer of Fabius, NY. 
to his sister 
Caty/Catherine Pierce  of Humphrey, NY Catt. Co. 

from Sarah Castro

Submitted by PHGS member Mike Henderson 


 

NOTE: ****

Monday Evening Fabius Dec. 20. 1852

Dear Sister and Brother

   I think you may justly think by my neglect to write you that I had forgotten you but not so I am often led to contemplate on the past and think how many changes death has made within a few ---- years and yet we live I see the effects of time on almost every thing and especially on myself I do not work with that ease I once did and of you are even permitted to see me you will see more wrinkle on my face and mire unsteadinfs in my hand then you once did although I enjoy very good health except the rheumatism. It is so long since I wrote you that I hardly know how to interest you but will be short in this and perhaps longer on the next. You have probably heard from Fabius often know of the teaching events that happen. The death of Edward Morrell probly was unexpected to you.  As it was lametable to the friends here. He as his wife visited here with Merrills folks when there were here in usual health which was probaly the last visit he made until in an other world.  He is missed more than any other man would be in the east part of town and some of the old folks have fallen in this season.  Old Uncle Boll Hegus has one after waiting with patience for six months or more in apictation of the ceurt.  Old  Mr McClare of Pompey Hollow died this fall.  There has been no material chang in the family except our brother Jacob whose casirdovowardl ----- John is getting a good living B.Cís doing well as his trade.  Henry is in the qrist mill at fabius and doing well and as for myself I am right here where I was born and like to be at present. and in measured contented. yet the continnal change in the neighbors sometimes make me feel that if I could sell I could change too I had quite an anxiety to come to see you this fall but could not well do it bit hope to next season if nothing prevents.

  The California fever has taken quite a number in this place and if it were not to legnthy I would give their names and I believe I will. Some you know and some you do not.  Those that left last winter were Capt. Bob Smith and son Daniel Holway Daniel Wallis and Ephraim. Hiram Pierce Madison Hodges Fred Fairchilds the one that married Albina Pierce Benjamens daughter two sons of the widow Winegure and others the number from Fabius was about 15 two of when have died Stephen Smith was sick but a few ------- of cramps and died also Ephriam Wallace the widows son he married Stephan Hubbards  daughter Mary
you remember her I think. And now they are fitting an other company to start the last of this month I know of none with whom you are aquainted so will not be particular to mention their names Orlando Tenny I will mention for you have not forgotten him is one of the company going to leave a beautiful wife and two daughters not his own but his wifes for she is a widow. Going on persuit of gold so you see men will sacrifice home and all the endearments of domestic life for wealth which they may never realize and yet there is a company of five or six more that will start form this place the last of  this month.  The winter thus far has been mild and no good sleighing yet.  The price of pork is from seven to seven and a half butter 25 cts oats 4 cts. Cheese 8 to 9 cents corn 53 cts wheat 7 shillings dried apples 5 cts per pound. Marcus is making Firkings for me this winter I have done some work in the shop this fall. So as I used to do and have raised a little grain frome Angeline Bunceit was all wright with her I hope to hear from her. And them boys where they are I hear that John Hicks has been infortunate again for which I felt sorry. I should like to hear from Mary Cooper I donít think of much more news and will chose by stating how you would fined us if you were to come in this evening Ellen is at the village in school Marion at the Doctors Adeline is over to Jacobs Alzina mending on making or darning something. While the two little ones are running and yubering and asking questions and Marcus is at work in the shop.  It was raining this morning and then snowed a little.  I sold one hog that weighed 442 pound and one yearling steer for ten dollars.  One farrow cow in the spring for 20 dollars and yearling colt for 35 dollars and 18 sheep for 18 dollars. 40 pound wool for  14 dollars and 300 of butter at 20cts and have earned a little in the shop Besides I think I will sen you a puper one in a wile and hope to hear from you soon You will perceive that in writing this I have on sugect Twice over as angron and other things not much in order but hope you can read it .  This is intended for all ispircing friends

Humphrey Fosmer


Ellen was born August 24, 1836
Marion was born August 5, 1834
Adeline was born April 6, 1839
Frank was born July 9, 1843

Lucia Amelia was born September 9, 1847
Georgina was born May 7, 1849

Alzina daughter of Daniel Pierce and Betsey was born January 3rd 1810 married Humphrey Fosmer March 7 1833 

Humphrey Fosmer son of Garrett and Aurelia was born July 29th 1807 at Fabius N.Y.

Garrett Fosmer 
(Born Kinderbrook N.Y 23 July 1764 / Died Fabius N.Y. 17 Nov 1830



Folder letter addressed to Mr. Garret Fosmer in Fabius Onendaga  County (Pre 1830)
Eight numbers in pounds or shillings adding to 213

Dear Brother

I received thee letter which you sent by Mister turner on the twenty ninth of May He called on me and he brought me some tap sugar which we received as a token of brotherly respect you wrote to me to send you some that but we have not got a single Thad for ourselves there is none caught of consequences this year Mister Turner could not take a better or not but I wrote one and had it ready on the second day of June wrote that your family and your Jeff were in the health I rejoice to hear of your injuring your health which we ought to prose above all things below the team I must inform you that I do not enjoy my health as well as usual My family are all at present your relatives are well at present your Uncle John Foster died last fall was sick but four days and a half I must inform you that I have remove down where I once lived by the crick and am now extended in the menchnitle businys.  You wrote to me about some money but that will be out of my power as I am _______ borrowed for money my Jeff but I would advise you to attend to making out the payment due on that mortgage in Albany for you are in danger or losing your land inconsequence of making the payment that is due on the mortgage you also wrote that you would be down in June which I think you ought to attend to and we shall look for you down this month but you must make no ______ pendance on m______ about money as its out of my power to assist  _____ ______ ______ _____ have ______ _____ tonite at present only that  _______ the times appear dismal in very _______ our winter crops are body kild by the winter and out farm in consumd by the worms this is from your affectionate brother
Henry Fosmer
Chatham __________


Fabius March 27 1854

Dear Sister

  Itís a long time since I have heard from you and would like to inform you that I have not forgotten you and would like to hear from you and the family.  I have been working with the team today and am some tired this evening but will write you a few lines.  We are in good health now and have been for some timepast this has been a very remarkable winter in that we have had but three or four days of good sleighing here this winter but it has paysed off very pleasantly in that we have had a revival of religion in which many we thing have been truly converted and old hopes revived among which are Mary Bacon Charles Wallis and Marcus.  It has been so long since I have written to you that I know not what to interest you with.  Garret and his wife and boy were here this first sleighing and staid with us three or four weeks waiting for snow when there fell a little and the started since which I have not heard from them.  He got his pension of thirty five dollars for his forty acres of land.  Jacob is doing very well at present has been doing a small job at two dollars a day in a mill in Delphi of about twenty days.  John about the same as formerly.  Henry has bought a small farm known as the couch farm and is on it.  And none as for myself I find I cannot see in the evening to read or write as I once could and in other ways, am admanished that old age is creeping on by almost inperceptable degrees and soon shall have ended worth all of this life and commence one which will not terminate and how important to me I have a good and well grounded hope in Christ Jesus the Lord.  I feel some times that I have this hope in exercise and how is it with you are you feel the savior precious to your soul.  I hope you do and that we one day shall meet in glory where parting will be no more for this let us pray There is a good many inquiries that I would like to make about the folks in Catarangues such as how is it with John Hicks and the old folks and Mary Cooper and Sanfords folks and Angeline and Henry and Hirem and Hurrson and little Adeline.  But maybe she is big as any body now.   Our Adeline is she was baptised a few weeks ago and talks in meetings and likes to go them often. And now lyartis how are you getting along do make shingle or team it or trade horses on stay home and work.  This you see I have made some enquiries that you may have something to answer in your next letter which I hope will be forth coming soon.  But anything but a steel pen with which I am writing.

     29 March

  We visited Almond Foxes today and found them well and Fravel Fox and his wife were there and we talked of old times and old folkes and how Father and his Father used to go to mill together and other things you know.  We are having a very tedious time just now and hay is getting scarce and is worth eight or nine dollars per ton and oats 40 cents and corn six shillings ______ bushell and cows from thirty five to fourty dollars.  I have six cows and five yearlings and 15 sheep and 4 hogs and one yearling colt and team and twenty hens.  Marcus works out eyarn this season cut sixteen dollars per month where he did last year at Nathanial Walters Alzina wishes to be remembered in this little sheet but has no time to write I guess but havent asked her.  But no more at present

Katherine Pierce                            H. Fosmer


Fabius  April 2 1855

Dear Sister

  It has been some time since I have had it on my mind to write you but have not done it but will not write a few lines By way of enquiring how it is with you and yours.  It is some time since we have heard from you and it would be a feast to reap a good long letter from you.  I hardly know what to write now I have begun but will say that we are well at present  and situated about as you last heard from us except Marion is with is at present while her husband has gone to Michigan to get a birth on the railroad.  He started last Friday Lucy has kept house by herself until the present and Jacob had boarded to the tavern.  He sold his farm for thirty one hundred dollars and for a short time past has been engaged in buying and selling shorts for feed he and D. Gollin they buy as Oswego and railroad it to Apulis and sell it farmers for feeding their cows.  They have bought  over one hundred tons at twenty dollars per ton and sell at twenty five.  It is rather of a tight time with us here those who have the most cows are the worst off.  Almost everything is fed out and what is left commands high prices.  I will mention a few things as a speciman.  Hay is 20 dollars per ton straw ten dollars per ton corn one dollar per bushel potatoes 75 cts oats 50 and scarce at that cows sell at fair prices say from thirty five to fifty dollars Henry sold four at fourty five 45 dollars I perceive that nine o clock is just at hand and my things of which I themselves to my mind such as the deaths and changes within a few years but hoping you will be here next summer will omit some.  There has been some deaths perhaps you may have heard of since last fall.  Old Mr Coonrod  Bush beyond Pompey Hill Jonathan Savage and old Deacon Savage Jacob Waterburys wife and John Mores wife old Esrg Browns wife and Seaburry Brown. Mr Ely has rented his tavern and is going west this spring Hiram Denison has taken it and Charles Audrews is in the lower house.

We have had a long tedious winter I think if we even had six weeks sleighing in March this has been the year and now the 2 d of April has been as tedious as any this winter and the sleighing quite good and the wind howls without.  But though the winter has been hard it has been good winter to us as we have been to meting a goodler and enjoy it much.  And have had many blefsing of and though the winter has been long and tedious it has pafsed away as pleasant as any in my life.  The people here change often and I almost feel that I am among strangers but there are some fene of my old associates yet left were they gone I should almost want to sell and go away too while I am around on the farm and thoughts of who once ocupied here it brings meloncholy reflections I often think of you as my only sister and wish you were where I could see you often.  Do you remembere me
Want you write me soon and let me know if you got this letter. How is it with your family and old Mr. Hicks and Mary and the rest of the folkes there and now I must close by subscribing my name

 Humphrey Fosmer to Katherine D
     L. B Pierce



Fabius Oct 2 1871

Dear Friend Ado
   I have long been thinking to write you and now will defer it no longer.  It is now nearly 9 o clock evening  Humphrey is reading his paper Lucin is studying the dictionary the hired boy reading and I trying to write you  How hard it is for me to write but such as I have I will not give.  We received a letter from your Mother some weeks ago was very glad to be about and visit her children which must be a pleasure to you all.  The friends are well as usual about here a Lucia went over after your Uncle John and his wife a few weeks ago they came over here and spent the day could not stay over night he thought he as well as when your folks were here I think yet he sufferd against deal.  Cate is well and pleasantly situated has a nice man.  Pill is making cheese this summer in Homer.  Lymam esperienced religion last call and he with his wife were baptised united with the Baptist church Cate and her husband also so they go on their way rejoicing.  We here from Henry your Uncle often their son Willie is making cheese in Caniua went this spring.  Sister Lucyís son is married last spring he with his wife are making cheese in Cainnovia. So you see our relatives are busy but we do not all make cheese.  I have so little to write that can interest you but your Mother will know them.  Has Mrs Wetherly gone west sorry to see have her go but hoped to see her again sometime she may come back I think she must susspe very much.  You will want to know how your uncle is his general health is as good as most men of his age but he still haves those terrible spasms once in every month generally sometimes often or last winter he had 11 in less than 24 hours I thought he could not live but he was soon about and able to work in August he was taken again had 8 in one day.  They do not last but a few moments but it is distressing to witness he knows nothing about perfectly inconcious. 

He does not have a moments warning so you can think something how you would feel were in my place and we dare not let him go off of the farm alone you can not think of the anxiety I have had for three years yet he seems just as smart as ever the most of the times.  I can not feel like going away from home for we have not been away to stay all night in more than a year
We say very little about it to him as he does not like to talk about it. I have been particular to tell you so your Mother could know how he has been.  I feel he may  be taken from us without any warning yet he may out live me.  I desire to be submission to the will of my Heavenly Father for I know I shall not have one trial to much.  If it only purifies my heart O how much I have needed his chastening rod I would say thy will not mine be done. Now please write often write about all of the friends.  Hope your Uncle will complete to your Mother I will close remember me to all the children

Yours as ever affectionalty

A.P. Fosmer


Catherine Fosmer was born near New Hartford Conn 14 Feb 1799 and married Lyartus Pierce 1 Jan 1822

Caty was daughter of Garret Fosmer and Aurella Humphrey (Caty)  she died June 23 1877


Fabius Jan 1 1871

Dear Sister Caty

  I would inform you that I am yet alive and enjoying good health at present and other blessings at which I have no reason to complain.  This is the evening of the first day of the year 1871 the first time I have written it and it seems as if the sixty three years of my like had gone quickly away and left nothing but the remembrance of the past some of which I like to dwell upon and some that bring sorrow to my heart.  But we will have our joys and sorrows and trouble in this life which will soon end and then if   we are Christians will be where there is no more sorrow.  I trust this will be the case with both of us and all of ours.  It is a good while since I have heard   from you thought perhaps by writing to you I might hear from you.  Its so long since I have written to you that I hardly know where to begin I often think of our childhood days when lived in the old log house where root potatoes and jonny cake tasted good and one of the boys would be gone to mull to Delphi and we waiting sometimes till in the night before we could have our cake.  When the cows run in the woods and we sometimes did not find them.  But those days have passed away and the people that then lived are mostly gone.  When I think of those that were living around about here then where are they now gone to the eternal world.  I feel sometimes that I am among strangers that know me not they change so often here.  Our family consists at present of myself and wife and Lucia and hired boy  I work at the old trade some and run the farm and in this way yet a comfortable living.  Alzina and boy have gone to church this evening which leaves me this opportunity of putting these few thoughts to paper. We have rebuilt our meeting house ante two very nice wish you could be here and go to meeting with is an see the place where you was baptised We have communion today and looking over the church could not see but one that was in the church when I was baptised that is John Keeney

We has some additions the fall past of upwards of twenty baptized.  The church has now about one hundred and twenty members and J.T. Tolmen Pastor Isiah Clark Orington Lewis and Deacons.  We just got news that John B. Sacket died about one week ago then living in Ohio.  His mother is still living. Brother John lives where he did his health is very poor and he is unable to go out much.  He and his wife live alone.  Henry lives two miles west of Cortland Village has a farm of fifty acres. I would like from you how you are situated since you have been left a widow.  You must feel somewhat lonely in your old age.  But I trust your children are kind to you and your cares made easy. Tell Henry I have not forgotton him and hope to see him sometime.  My last wishes to Henry and wife and Hirams folks and all others of the family there has been several deaths of old people some of which you once knew Wm. Lewis wife Mrs. Jocephus Clark and some others.  There are new living here old Mrs Porter aged 90 year old Mrs. Bacon Mars Tripp that was Mrs Hering Wm. Lewis Jacob Stufford is living and Aunt Phebe Vincent Mr Botass and John Doulecy I mention these names because you was once familiar with them and many times have thoughts of them and known if they were alive or not.  I see tat my sheet is almost full and so do not think of much more that would interest you so would close  now and give Alzina a chance to fill up what I have left out

    This from your brother Humphrey Fosmer
(Humphrey has filled the sheet so will wait and write to add long tell him to write and not wait for me for we are glad to get a letter from her)  A. P.  Fosmer

[ A.P. Fosmers note written along the margin of the letter to ďCatyĒ]
A.P. Fosmer = Alzina Pierce


Fabius Dec. 7 1857

Dear Sister

In haste I sit down to write you a few lines that you may know that I have not forgotten you and would say to you that through the goodness of God we are alive and enjoying good health and pleanty to eat and drink.  It is so long since I have written to you that I hardly know how to address you I want to hear from you very much and that is the reason why I now write.  I shall not attempt to write any news in this but if it should fall into your hands and you will answer it I would I would sit down and write you a good long letter.  The last one I wrote you I directed to Humphrey Center perhaps you did not get it We heard from you by way of Merrills folks and did look for you out here this fall until I saw them. There is a few of us left in the land of the living that were here when you lived here the most of them have gone _________ If we should ever be permitted to meet again here on earth you will see that time changes looks of our faces and our habits for white I am looking at these lines I am looking through glasses and my dear wife sits by my side mending my coat with her specks on I think it makes her look older with the glasses on then it does me but it may be my notion.  This is Saturday and we have a meeting this afternoon where we hope to enjoy the presence of the great head of the church. It snows some today and there is almost enough for sleighing The people complain of hard times with pleanty for man and beast to subsist upon and probably always will.  The crops came in very well except corn and potatoes.  The deaths of late have been old Esq Brown and old Mrs Houd

My best wishes to you and yours

Humphrey Fosmer


Fabius March 5 1858

Dear Sister

I take this time to write you a few lines for the third time since you have written to me and I have thought perhaps they were not directed wright if you receive this pleas inform me.   Am so out of the habit of writing that it comes quite unnatural to take up my pen and write a letter but dear sister I feel the uncertanity of time of late although in good health at present. 
I have thought quite strongly of coming to see  you this spring but money is so scarce I dont know that I shall.  I feel it would be a great pleasure to once more see and converse together while in the flesh.  Death has again broken in upon our number taken a brother Lamentolle as it may seem Jacob is no more he died unexpectedly to us although we know that it his cows was continued it would result in the same.  He died without reform from the effects of his intemperate habits on Thursday evening about eight oíclock Feb 17.  He was living at the village in the house formerly called the old mill house at the west end having bought it and the store in the fore part of the winter. Again the destroyer came a little nearer to us and took away out little and only grand child about eight months old in our house south.  Marions little daughter a lovely little thing it was and had become quite a little pet with us it was buried on Friday the 26th. There has been several deaths this winter some of which some I will notice old esq Brown old man Abel Webster John Beach Hernando Vegus wife and a young man drowned in Carpenters pond by the name of Cuningham a son of Eunice Benson while skating on the sabath day and lastly a man by the name of WM Case yesterday about ten oclock hung himself in his barn over _______ crops on the Phelps farm and is to be buried tommorow.

The other relatives remain the same and further I donít know of much that will interest you.  Merrill and his mother were out in the fall from whom we heard from you Merrill seemed quite lonely This has been a very mild winter until the present time which s cold enough.

H. Fosmer



Fabius April 1 1858

Dear Friends
It is with much anxiety that I sit down to write  you a few lines after receiving yours though I would write immediately but have waited until now hoping that sister is better of her sickness and that you will write to me again soon
Our family is the same as when I last wrote and those that remain are in health  I shall not write much at this time but would say that WM Frink buried his wife a few days since.  The weather has been fine for a week oats and some have begun to plow grain is cheap Oats 2/6 weat 1 dollar hay 6 dollars butter 20 cts cows thirty five to fourty dollars yet people are complaing hard times.  This from your brother and friend

Humphrey Fosmer


Fabius Nov 1865

My Dear Sister and family

I have long thought of writing you and fianally I put my thoughts on paper and started it for Catoraugus but did not direct it  write so it went to Washington and was returned and now will try again we have not heard from any of  you since last spring we thought we should see some of you out here this fall but have been disappointed and now we want to hear from you very much.
There has been many changes here since we were at your house it has been very sickly here this fall a great many have died of fever and dysentery. Last Sunday there was two sisters young ladies both buried on one grave died of fever daughters of Calvin Washtering on of the valley that live north of the village lost 2 children of dysentery both buried in one grave and a great many others but none of out relatives. We have been very much favored the last years but we still feel terrible effect of the dessolating surge which passed over our dwelling lass than 2 years since I can never describe the feelings I have the loanlyness of the sadness of my bereaved heart.  We miss our loved ones every where almost as much as at first. We are quite alone this winter or fall as Lucia goes to school to the village is home once a week.  Johns folks are well their daughter Peachard was married this fall to brother Roberts son that lost his wife last year Henrys folks are well he sends his photograph to you.  We want to hear from you all very much I did think you would be out this fall where is Adie  I have not heard from her in a long time, have her write and tell us about all the folks tell Mrs Learn my old man sends his love to her. 

How are Harvies family and Hiriam and Julia I would like to see you all.  I thought when we were there we should never come again unless some of you come here but we begin to talk about coming again if we all live a few years we may do so I enjoyed the visit very much even out ride in the rain down to Garrets is pleasant to look upon.  How many times I have thought of that rainy day and how comfortably we rode then were we took dinner it all comes up before me to night as I write.  And then think how kind Lyartes was to take Humphrey to see his friend Crane I live to think of those things and then I think I would like the privilege of doing the same for both of you How much we would enjoy going round with you among friends when you write tell us how Mrs. Wetherby is as I have not heard from her in a long time. My love to Henry and Harlow and all do write soon

AP Fosmer



Fabius Jan 5 1866

Brother and Sister Pierce

It is some time since we have heard form you and take this opportunity to wrote a few lines hoping to hear from you soon.  I have not forgotton the good visit last fall and would like to visit with you again this winter do not expect to.  We did expect to see some of you folkes here in Sept last but since we did not a letter would be very acceptable from you.
My health is quite good this fall So that I get along with my work without hiring much do my own chores and were in the shop some Have two horses thirty sheep and five head of cattle raised fifty bushel peas fourty of corn eighty of peas and oats and 130 clear oats and 35 bush wheat sold some oats for fifty cents some peas for one dollar and some corn for one dollar per bushel
Had some wood cut at six shillings barrel themselves and some for sixty five cts. Wood is from 200 to twenty shillings per cord for stove. Our family is not large only Lucia now and she barrels and goes to school at the village but is home this week yet there is somebody here beside our own family most of the time. Brother John got hurt bad one week ago by a tree falling on him while chopping Henry lives on and owns the old esq Brown farm.  Things are different here now from what it used to be cheese seems to be the nufing passion here.  There is one cheese factory at Kelreys settlement one at Apulia and one at the village and one building near Gooseville people draw their milk and find all the materials and give one cent a pound for making average 4 hundred per cone the season. Some think it pays and some do not cows are very high good cows sell from 40 to 60 dollars

There was a serious fire in town a few days ago Frank Bramers machine shop in which he was building monny machines took fire in the day time and burnt to ashes no insurance loss quite heavy, there some excitement just now about the new railroad to run from Syracuse to Newburgh touching somewhere near Gooseville

H. Fosmer



Fabius Jan 1866

Dear Sister Katy

I would like  to see  you and visit awhile I feel lonely sometimes when thinking of those dear ones that have gone to the other world no more to return. I think if the many with whom we were acquainted which seems but a short time ago that have gone to the spirit  world whither we are fast hastening. Will it be well with us then and shall we exchange this corruptible body  for an incorruptible and  ______a corner of glory.  If we have accepted Christ as out righteousness we shall and if we love him none we shall love him then and even be with him.  Let is try to live for this end that we many meet where sorrow will never come.  I feel not to complain of my lot for I have many blessings to be thankful for which I cannot tell you all. In speaking of other I hardly know where to begin thirty years has wrought great changes in persons around here but Judge Pellot is living in the village. Old Mr Osborn Samual Vincent Old Mr Enouch Kingon Old Major Miller Ellis Sheldon Mr Younglove and Dea Webster names in which you are familiar.  The society in which we mingle are most of them younger than ourselves yet we enjoy their company very much.  Yesterday we had a gathering at out ministers house the superintendent and teacher of Sunday school and in the evening went over to Uncle Daniels where an and Esther and Lucy were and a good many more.  But I see that I am filling up sheet. Give my love to all the friends there to Hiram and Harry and Henry and Harlow and wives and to add, Julia and Mrs. Learm and tell Addie to let us hear from her and tell us about it.

Yours Humphrey Fosmer


Letter dated Jan 13 1870

This is a note in a letter from Humphrey signed by APF (A. Pierce Fosmer)

Dear Sister

Humphrey had delaied sending his letter and I will add a line and first I will say that this is my 60th birthday which is the 21st of Jan.  Well when I was young I thought when one was 60 they were very old.  I do not feel very old and yet I know my latest sun is setting fast I have a desire I may have a green old age should I live to be old.  Humphrey has told you about our meeting house.  Well it was dedicated the 19th and we had a beautiful day and a very nice time. And best of all the whole amount that was due for rebuilding was subscribed the whole ammount for rebuilding was 6000.00.  It come rather heavy on some but we have a beautiful house and when it was considered how many have left us this past year men of means and some have failed I almost wonder how we have done it.  Humphrey sibcribed 100 dollars first thought that was all he could give but he has kept lifting until now it ammounts to 275. We have made some sacrifice but we were agreed in doing so. Humphrey has been doing well this fall and winter he has mane of those spasms since _______but I am in fever but hope.  Truly the lord is good and his  _______ endurth forever 
APF

(Upside down and in margin)
Let us have a letter from you soon we want to hear from you often 


Fabius Jan 13 1870

Dear Sister

It is a longtime since I have addresses you by way of a letter and find many thoughts passing in my mind.  It is long since I have seen you that I hardly know what to write but am thankful that I can say that goodness and mercy of my Heavenly Father is still continued to me.  My health has been very good for some time past and I have done my own work and chores thus far this winter but I am confined at home closure than I wish to be.
I did anticipate visiting you last fall but circumstances were such that I could see no time that I could leave.
I heard from you by way of  a letter Addie a few days ago informing us of your health and other things of which I was very glad.  I hope to have a long letter from you after this reached you.  I feel that our years are fast running off and we many never see each other faces again but hope to I donít know that I have anything by way of news in particular.  The greatest excitement we have had about here has been about the stone giant. But now that has gone we have it quiet.  I saw the thing but could not tell whether it was petrifaction or sculptor.  It was the most wonderful that was ever known about here and there is much a defference in opinion how it came there as there was when it was first found.  You have probably seen the account of it in the papers.
We have been building out meeting house this summer and are to dedicate next Wednesday the 19 It has been overhauled from top to bottom inside and out costing over six thousand dollars and is one of the neatest and nicest houses in the country.  We have a very good pastor J.H. Tolman who has been with us over a year and a half. There has quite a number dies the last year mostly old people.  I will mention some.  Cendace Cornstack Jessie Stamnard James Preston he was 64 years old. Stephen Pope 

John Curtis Mrs Orgemus Hills Abigail Salbury Deacon Eli Webster Mrs Corbin Jeremiah Keeny old father Hoswell are all I think at present. Our family this winter consists of myself and wife and Lucia.  I hired a boy 4 months in the summer and some by the day since.  I have had very good crops on a small ______ that is 5 cows 20 sheep  4 acres oats 2 of wheat one of corn and a little buckwheat.  174 bushels oats 37 wheat 35 corn 10 buckwheat and 30 of peas and have done considerable in the shop.  Brother John is about the same he has been for a few years past quite feeble and just keeps about his boys furnish what he needs to make him comfortable.  Henry lives about one and a half miles west of Cortland village has a small farm. Changes are continually going on around me and I sometimes feel that I am among strangers as much as though I should move away yet I have many associations here that no other place would attend.  Here I was born and here I have received then new truth which at times makes it seem very precious to me,  Here my father and mother lived died.  Yet I felt that if it would be for that I could change places but little regret. I will mention some of the names of those you once know that are still living about here.  John CadwellG.H. Corbin Old Mr. Hering Owen Vincent Ansyl Caldwell Orin Fox Gosalt Osborn Elezer Andrews John Keeney Lenord and Orin Woodruff Daniel Porter Edmond Harris and old Mrs Bacon aged 96 years.  And Jerima Stockhaum used to be Shankland now.
We have a letter from Mrs Wetherby in which we hear a little from you and want to see you very much My dear sister give my love to all the friends and especially Mrs Learn.  Tell Harvys folks we have not forgotton them and Angeline and Harlow. And Mary Cooper and Levi. And Johns folks and Lovina. This is the fris letter I have written in sometime hope it may interest some and all mistakes excused.

I find that I cannot see quite as well as I could once and cannot hear quite as well.  But am thankful it as will with me as it is.  I feel that our days and years are fast being numbered and shall soon pass away. But I see my sheet is full and must close. To Caty and Lyartis Pierce

Humphrey Fosmer


Envelope with 3 cent stamp green Washington on left upper corner cancelled by Duplex Canceler AGT 30 Addressed to Mrs Catherine Pierce
Humphrey
Catteraugus C
N.Y.
 

Fabius March 17th 1873

Dear Sister Caty

I have has it on my mind to write you a few lines sometime and now improve the time.  I am quite well this winter and was very glad to hear from you It seems a long time since I have seen you but I trust if my life is spared till next summer I shall come there is so many things I think of it is difficult what to write Brother John is very comfortable this winter and Henry lives where he did last fall when Henry was there.  This has been a very havel winter and still continues but we have nothing to complain of as we all nessary things and try to enjoy them. There has been several deaths of old people about here the year past some of which I will mention John More Edmund Fox Martin Lewis Old Mathew Aering Joseph Water Mrs Corbin Old Mr. Elis Shelder There are yet living of your aquaintenace Old Aunt Phebe Vincent Old Mrs Bacon ohn and Champion Keeney Esq Thompson Owen Vincent Alvin Jones Abner Brown Alvin and Westley Brown and Seneca Smith.  Orsenius Hills Old Mrs. Perter John Cadwell George Lawrence and wife.

We have a revival in the church here this winter some converted and I cannot forget the visit the boys made us, they came so unexpected especially Henry and I would like to see them again soon I think if we should meet we should know better what to say to each other give my love to Hirams folkes and all other friends.  I hope we shall hear that you are well Our days are swiftly passing away and we shall be laid in the grave as out father and mother  has been.
I thank Harlows wife writing to us and hope she will do the same again tell Henry not to forget us and say farewell for the present.

Humphrey Fosmer


Dear Friends,

We were very glad to hear from you all that you my dear sister are spared yet to your dear family.  You have suffered a great deal yet you are this side of the dark river while many of parents have (change from ink to pencil) passed over.  I never felt more that I want on the whole on then now, for in looking back over my life so much time has run to waste, I would be more diligent in the masters business.  Tell Henry I remember the visit with him I think he is a growing Christian.
Tell him to make me a cake of sugar.  I will come and get it if I can.  I hope Mrs Harlow will write again please send your photograph then I shall know you when I see you
A.P. Fosmer

Humphrey has been very well all winter 
APF


My belief is that most of this correspondence was between brother and sister  Humphrey and Catherine (Pierce) Fosmer
-Don Brooks 25 June 2000

Alzina Pierce was born Jan 23 1810 and died Aug 18 1884.  She was the daughter of Daniel Pierce and Betsy Coats she (APF) married Humphrey Fosmer March 7th, 1833

Catherine Fosmer was born Feb 14 1799 and died June 23 1877 She was the daughter of Garrett Fosmer and Aurell Humphrey , she married Lyartus Pierce

Lyartes Pierce, son of Caleb was probably born in Fabius New York

Letters probably were handed down to Julia G. Pierce and when she died in 1964 were handed down to Julia P. Brooks

NOTE: ****

Nancy Ladd has more info on the Porters, Websters, Fox and Pierce in this letter. You can mail her at  mom@surften.com 
 


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