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Original Document
Sally Monro, on Farm Life in Sylvania, PA, 1830



Morningside Farm, Sylvania, Pa., August 25, 1830

I take my pen I hand to write you a few lines by Elder Asa Hodge who leaves this place soon for the Eastern Country to a Baptist Conference in the state of Maine and expects to visit Rhode Island before he returns. We think him to be a very fine man.

I like his preaching the best of any that I have heard in this country.

My husband has talked of coming with him but it is impossible for him to get ready so early if he comes at all and he calls himself a Freewill Baptist. But, bless the Lord we never shall be asked what denomination we are but we all have a home. For my part I miss my home and my good brothers and sisters to help me along the good old way.

It seems to me that if ever there was a heathen land I have got into it but I have a desire to be thankful that it is as well with me as it is. My husband and Mr. William Peck and Miss Ann Coggeshall are about forming a Sabbath School.

It is thought by some here to be a great curse but I think if they go on with it, it may be the means of doing a great deal of good.

But, my dear Cousin, they are poor and not able within themselves to go on with it without a little help from some of our charitable friends. We would be very thankful to you if you would inform some of out Sunday School brethren and sisters of out situation and I know that they are in the habit of doing a great deal for Missionaries and Sunday School.

Perhaps they will feel willing to help us to some testaments and other books suitable for the school. They had the school for four Sundays and had about 26 scholars.

It is a great wonder to some. There are a great many spectators wondering what it means.

Last Sunday the young ladies and gentlemen all read once and some took lessons to recite next Sabbath. Some of them say they want to learn more about the Bible than they do and they known no better way. I think a few question books explaining the Bible to them would be very useful here.

Mr. Dodge says he will fetch them the books with pleasure for nothing and will do what he can to help us if his life is spared in return. He says he will take some pains to visit around and I think he will be there by the last of September or the first of October.

Or if it should be that he cannot come there, send them some other way, perhaps by the stage. Miss Ann Cogwheel has written to the superintendent of Pawtucket desiring him to assist us a little. William Peck has or is about writing to the congregation left in Bristol for a little help. I hope his prayer may be answered.

O Cousin; here we are in a town with no meeting house, no settled preacher and no Sunday School Society. O pray for us that our faith may not fail in this dry and barren land.

Think my cousin, how many poor little souls there are, growing up in this place with no knowledge of the Savior. Some of their parent think more of preparing them for a ball or a frolic or some other worldly amusement.

If you could be the means of assisting us I have no doubt but you will be blessed for never did I see the need of spreading His word more than at the present. Let us be up and doing and be thankful that Jesus was ever merciful to call after us when there are so many who know not the way.

I will tell you a little about our domestic affairs. We have rept 1475 sheaves of wheat, ten acres of rye that is pretty good. We have about four acres of corn which they say is the stoutest in the town. The summer has been very warm and our hay has come in very stout.

We have plenty of potatoes and all kinds of garden vegetables. They say we have more apples than any other farm in town. The orchard stand on high ground and the frost did not hurt it. I have plenty of sweet apples to bake and sour apples for pies which are already ripe.

We have 22 peach trees in the garden and some peaches. We have six cows and I have made cheese all summer weighing from 10-20 pounds. Cheese is 6-7 cents we sheared 82 sheep. Wool is 37 ½ cents a pound.

We have three pair of cattle (oxen), the same horses we brought from Rhode Island and one colt about three months old. We have 14 geese, nine turkeys and between 30-40 hens and chick and six putting hogs.

Tell Aunt Patty that I heat the oven nearly every day since I came here.


Wendell Clark of Sylvania who has given a copy of the above letter to The Settler explained that the children of Owen and Marie Card Clark are the sixth generation to live in the farmhouse built by Henry Card, though the original house was only about half the size it is now. The oven which Sally heated was the Dutch oven built into the side of the fireplace in the original home. The oven is now sealed over and the fireplace reduced in size.

Credit: From Letter written by Sally Monro to her cousin George B. Munro of Bristol, R. I. Tri-Counties Genealogy and History Sites by Joyce M. Tice, http://www.joycetice.com/jmtindex.htm
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