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Sunday Oct 5th, 84
Mrs. Sarah Smith

Dear friend

I will not try to apologize for not writing sooner. Sometimes I was sick and when well I dident have time or paper or something. There has been so much sickness in the neighborhood that I have been away from home a good deal when I was able. I suppose of course you have heard of Uncle Johnie (illegible) death. Oh Sarah that was the saddest affair that I ever witnessed. I was there for three days before his death and he was dying all that time. I dont think any human ever suffered more and the children seemed to feel so bad. We thought for a long time that Becky would loose her mind. You know she is very nervous and excitable any way. She would take fainting sells that would last three or four hours in spite of all we could do. I havent seen Becky since the funeral. I have been sick myself most of the time. I guess Mr. (illegible) affairs are left in a rather bad condition. The children are having trouble already. I told you when I wrote last that I had (illegible) sore mouth. I got medacine of (illegible) for almost two months but it dident get any better so I quit takeing medacine. The doctor said that if I quit takeing medacine the disease was likely to go down in my stomach. But I quit anyway and I got along very well untill about two weeks ago.

I had been feeling bad for several days and couldent think was the matter with me till one knight I was taken awful bad. I though I had suffered a good deal. But I never suffered anything to compare with that. When the Dr. came he said it was just what he had been expecting. He said that I was now in a very bad condition. I got better of that spell in a day or two. But I take them just anytime. Perhaps you will hardly believe it but I will get so weak in fifteen minutes after I take a spell that I cant walk. I weaned my baby and now feed him with a bottle. I dont know which cried the most - him or I while I was weaning him. Tell Dora that he is just awful sweet. It is almost two weeks since I weaned him but I dont see that I am any better yet.

Aunt Lib Shrieve is still very low. The Dr. thinks she is mending but I dont see any change, unless it is that she is getting weaker. I dont think that she will ever get up. I go up real often and stay a few minutes with her. She gets so lonesome. She is never able to be up any but long enough to have her bad made and sometimes she cant do that. She is getting terribly discouraged. She says she wishes that she would die. Says she feels that she is just in the way. But the rest of the family dont think so. It would almost kill Mr. Shrieves and the girls to loose her. Bell Neigheart has been very sick, but she is getting better now. I was up at Shrieveses last Friday. Mrs. Shrieves wanted to know if I had written to you yet. I told her I hadent and she said that she wanted me to tell you that she still remembered you that she often thought of you in the long days when she is lying all alone in bed. She says it would be awful nice to see you step in. Dr. Allen from Washington is attending her.

Sarah do you folks take the Pekin paper. I have been wanting Wess to send you the Pekin Times several times but he says that you take the Republicans. If you dont take it say so and we will send you the Times when there is anything worth reading.

Oh Sarah I have made the dress that Len gave me and I believe it is about the prittyest dress I ever had. When we go over to Peoria to get babies pictures taken I am going to have one picture of myself taken with that dress on and send it to you. You made so much fun of it.

Well I guess I will close as I expct you are tired of my nonsense. Jane McColla dont say a word about anyone this fall. You can guess the reason. I may tell you more in my next letter. Tell Dora I would just like to shake her good. Wess wants to know if I have said anything about him. I told him no and he says to tell you that we have two cows to milk now and he has it all to do. Dont you pity him. (Lente ?) Hamptons are all well. I told (Yiela ?) what you told me to and she said she would write that day. So I suppose you have heard from her. Well good by. Wess is waiting. Write soon. I wont be so slow next time.

Yours truly

Rosa Lewis

Excuse this paper. It is out of my recept book.

NOTES: Envelope postmarked: Oct 18, 1884 Morton, Illinois
                                                     Oct 27, 1884 Forest Grove, Oregon
This page last updated: May 4, 2003

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