Friday, September 14, 2012

December 14, 1862--Stephen to His Children (Page 1 of 4)

December 14, 1862

Dear Children it has ben a long time since i rote you a letter and i am a shamed of it but i have ben so irritated (?) that i could (?)  not ___ you ___Excuse me i have ben gon_ _____ are from any post office 270 (240?) miles  we are all well  Hiram (Parker) and Oren (Sherwood) myself is at the Dalles on the Columbia river in Oregon  we have a pack __orse of 30 horses and mules that we have Earned(?) this summer but we have not made any money but we think we can make money next summer  my wife and W (William Sherwood) & little children is in Cal ___ i had a letter (?) from _____
The children mentioned here are Wellington (13), Dan (11), and John (7).  They are living with their older half brother Henry Stephen Sherwood and his wife in Antioch, Lake, Illinois
Hiram (38) referred to here is likely Hiram Parker (born 1824), the brother of Sophia Parker Sherwood (2nd wife of Stephen Sherwood).  Hiram has not been found in the 1860 Census with his wife and children (he may have been in California) but was with his wife, Sylvia (from Ireland) in the 1850 and 1870 Census in Lake County, Illinois.  Hiram would also be the Uncle of Oren and William, Stephen's children.

Oren (22) and William (18) are children of Stephen Sherwood and Sophia Parker Sherwood (who died in 1853).  His wife Elizabeth Denick Sherwood was in California with their their two children, Lewis (8) and George (2).  George was born in California.

The Dalles, Oregon, 1867
Map with the Dalles and Columbia River


  1. How wonderful to have all these old letters. Probably the best insight into your ancestor's lives. I'm going to look for some in mum's huge box of 'treasures' next time I visit.

  2. Good luck. If they aren't there perhaps a person in the family who has them might be located. Actually I found these letters from a distant relative. Feel very lucky to have them,

  3. I love transcribing my family's old letters. They offer such personal and fascinating insight into the day to day life. It is such a shame that this important type of artifact will no longer be available for the next generation, due to our "electronic addiction."

    Good luck with your work.