May 25, 1908 letter to Oscar & Mary Ann Keith from Ethan Keith

May 25, 1908

To: Oscar & Mary Ann Keith

From: Ethan Keith, Galesburg, MI

Is sending a record of the Keith Family which goes back to when they came from Scotland. The record that Aylmer Keith was working on went back to the 13th century which includes a line of Admirals, Earls and Lords, however, he wasn’t able to complete the history. There had been quite a few thunderstorms where lightning killed some of the neighbors’ horses.

Scan of 1908-05-25 Ethan Keith to Oscar & Mary Keith

Dear Cousins

Your card was received in due time was glad to hear from you and that you were usually well. Dont know but you began to think I was not agoing to send you the records but I have been so busy that I could not get at it before. The Keith record goes back to the 13th century. I have given it to when they came from Scotland. Back of that it is a line of Admirals, Earls and Lords. Oh! We didn’t come from any small potatoes. I am sorry Aylmer[1] did not have the means to complete the history and have it published in book form. We are having a rain this P.M. and evening. Lightning killed a span of horses for Frank Crossfield about 5 o’clock. Week ago Saturday night we had the hardest thunder storm in years. Lightning killed two horses for Jim —- lives on Helen’s old farm.

Hannah[2] is working on three graduation dresses for next Friday. She is all tired out. Has one regular girl and a woman helping some this week. I am agoing to plant a little over two acres of corn. That is all the ground I have got this year. Have had to wait for Mr. Struble to get his planted before he could plant for me. We have it most plowed.

We looked for a visit from you when you came from Hurberts,[3] but were disappointed. Seems as though you might have come.

Hannah and I have talked about our visit at your house a good many times and how we would enjoy visiting you again. But it seems to be almost impossible to get away. We want to go to Shelbyville[4] and Chicago[5] but can’t. George Tomlinson[6] died the 11th of this month was 85 years old. Had paralysis. Write when you can. With love and best wishes will close.

Your cousin

E B Keith


[1] His second cousin, Aylmer Keith

[2] His sister, Hannah (Keith) Towne

[3] John Herbert Keith, Oscar & Mary’s son

[4] Where his sister, Louese (Keith) Harris, and his brother, James Keith, and their families lived

[5] Where his sister, Nancy (Keith) Brown, and her family lived

[6] The husband of his first cousin Marion (Sprague) Tomlinson

This letter is among several which were loaned to Jim & Ruth (Stankey) Keith, probably back in the 1980s, by Ella Nola (Curtis) Eaton, whose husband, Clifford Eaton, was the great-great-grandson of James “Oscar” & Mary Ann (Batey) Keith. This is a photocopy of Ruth’s handwritten copy of the letter. Note: Jim Keith is the great-grandson of Charles Luke Keith Jr., who was James “Oscar” Keith’s uncle.
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