October 16, 1903 letter to Hannah Towne from Nancy Brown

October 16, 1903

To: Hannah Towne, Galesburg, MI

From: Nancy Brown, Chicago, IL

The day before was their father’s 90th birthday and she wishes she could have been at home to be with him as she realizes that even though he lived longer than any of their parents’ family members, he won’t be around much longer.

Scan of 1903-10-16 Nancy Brown to Hannah Towne

Friday 10:45 AM[1]

Dear ones at home[2]

I wished so many times yesterday that I could been at home, Pas[3] 90th birthday. Not that it would been any more to him than any day but to me it seems so much. He has lived longer than any of his own family or Mas[4] and we know they nearly all lived to quite an age. You wrote how much more quiet he was. That seems to me like an other change. That means he is a little nearer to change. How terrible it will be when it comes for us but better for Pa. I shall try not to be surprised at any thing but I do hope I can see him again. Well Hannah as you say I was homesick this Monday. I got home just twenty minutes past nine. When I took my train you still stood in the station. I “rubbed”[?] around a little more and found we did not have to go out side or down the stairs to go from the waiting room to the elevated station, which is so much better & easier than going up & down so many steps. Am glad you enjoyed your lunch. It did not amount to much. Bess[5] said we had been gone about half an hour when she thought of a package. It just took her breath. She had the meat, bread, cake & cheese she had fixed for you. Said if she had known she could find us she would have gone to the train next morning & taken it to you. They did not get over here till yesterday. She was not well enough to come. I’m going home with her this P.M. We will stop down town & get her some nightdresses & a bedstead. She has decided to put up a bed in the kitchen bedroom. She is bloated quite bad this week. Her face & hands look real bad. Sunday Lizzie[6] has invited us, Julius[7] & Bess, Claude & Eda[8] there for the day. Bess wont try to go unless she feels much better which can hardly be expected. The tomattoes have not come yet. If they come while I’m gone Eda will see to them. I shall come home tomorow morning. I dont see how you got your work done that was promised if Carrie[9] was sick. Lou[10] wrote the xcursion is tomorow. She nor Cora[11] cant come. Lou will plan now to come for the hollidays. _____ and Lela[12] will eat up to Claudes tonight. Bess is up there now. I must stop and get lunch as Lela will be home about 11-45 and we want to get downtown early. Quite a cold wind blowing. Ethan if there is an other xcursion I wish you would come. You could see us and how we live if nothing more. I have written _____ a letter will send you a coppy. Write when you can. Love to all.


The things have come, have not opened them _____. 1:15.


[1] Even though the letter was not dated, her mention of “Pas 90th birthday” makes it obvious it was written on October 16, 1903

[2] Her sister, Hannah (Keith) Towne, and brother, Ethan Keith, who lived in the family home

[3] Their father, Charles Luke Keith Jr.

[4] Their mother, Sarah (Crawford) Keith

[5] Her daughter, Bess (Brown) Recoschewitz

[6] Her sister-in-law, Elizabeth (Ogden) Brown

[7] Bess’ husband, Julius Recoschewitz

[8] Her son and daughter-in-law, Claude & Eda (Neumaier) Brown

[9] Presume this is the Carrie that is mentioned in previous letters as someone who helped Hannah with her dressmaking

[10] Their sister, Louese (Keith) Harris

[11] Their sister-in-law, Cora (Meredith) Keith

[12] Her daughter, Lela Brown

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