This letter was written by John Rogers (1799-1889), the son of Timothy Rogers (1766-1850) and Sally Moore (1770-1844). He was married to Elisa Shipman (1810-1880). He later resided in Kinderhook, Columbia County, New York, where he farmed.
John wrote the letter to his sister, Anna (Rogers) Warner (1797-1837), the wife of Timothy Warner (1794-1863), in South Otselic, Chenango County, New York.
In the letter, John mentions “brother Darius.” This was Darius Benjamin (1781-1850) who married John and Ann’s sister, Martha Rogers (1795-1884) in 1817. The Benjamin’s had seven sons.
John also mentions “brother William.” This was William Thompson (1790-1871) who married John and Ann’s sister, Maria Rogers (1793-18xx) in 1812. The Thompson’s had at least three sons and one daughter.
Their brother, Gilbert Rogers (1805-1832) is also mentioned. He died less than six months later, however.
Addressed to Mrs. Timothy Warner, South Otselic, Chenango County, New York
North Chatham, New York
February 15, 1832
Brother Darius has followed your advice as respects growing rich both in grace and the worldly concerns. He has been adding to his farm and I hope and trust he has to his happiness. At least he has enrolled his name upon the sacred scrip as a testimony of the interest he has received in our Savior. We have had considerable of an awakening in this neighborhood since you was in Chatham. Some fifteen or twenty thinks that they have experienced a change of heart. If so, it will be no damage to them not that neighborhood. They are all of the Methodist order. Brother & Sister Benjamin’s sends their respects. Their family are in good health and a scrubbing smart brood of boys they have. Be careful or they will outnumber your girls. Sister Maria, I understand, is at Uncle Hill’s. She has started for a general visit in Chatham. Her health has not been as good since she had that disease.
I have not seen brother William for two months. He was at that that time and is still to work at the clay hill. You mentioned that you heard he was in goal. That was a mistake, He has not been there at all. He moved on the Limits and obtained bail for the same, and I think he still lives on the Limits. Our business with them is not settled. We levied on and sold all the personal property, yet there was not sufficient to satisfy the debt and how it will result in that, I am at a loss to tell, although I expect that we shall be the unfortunate creditors to a considerable amount. That is the way the world slides with us. We are sure of but few things of this world. Those that live it out as fast as they earn it apparently live quite as happy as those that has their thousands.
Mother came to Patty’s today. She has started for an annual tour. She expects to spend some time in this and Uncle Hill’s neighborhood. Father is sealing and partitioning a cellar ____ and bed sink for that kitching. Consequently the south room will be much smaller and pleasanter, and more room in the Kitching. That is the cause of Mother’s leaving for so long a visit.
[portion of letter missing]
…of some more plausible excuse (you undoubtedly will say). You know, or you will learn by experience, that old bachelors always have an excuse on hand ready to make use of it whenever it is required.
At the receipt of yours, I was confined to a bed of sickness, although at that time not seriously ill. Notwithstanding, before the scene closed, I was visited with the severest illness that I ever experienced. It commenced with the influenza and continued in that state for about three weeks and finally ended with the Typhus Fever or a species of it which in the whole made about seven weeks that I was under the doctor’s care.
I commenced business last week on Tuesday. My strength has not as yet fully returned, although my health and appetite are usually good. Should you not think that an reasonable apology for the long delay, you will please mention in your next. Brother Gilbert’s health is better. He has commenced working in the factory. He works for Slott’s four miles this side of Hudson. He visited father’s twice whilst I was sick.
We have had better sleighing this season than usual. Although the snow has been very light — at no time more than six inches in depth, that is — at the present time. Cousin John and his family enjoy good health this winter. The prospects for farmers in this country are very flattering at present. All kinds of grain has been unusually high for the season past. Wheat at present is worth from 10 to 10/6. Rye 6/. Corn 4/6 Oats in the fall before the close of the river was worth 45 cts. We have paid 40 cts. for several hundred bushels. Our business continues about the same.
My respects to Mr. Warner. Tell him that he must keep up good courage as respects William’s ever assisting him I think is very very uncertain, although he yet may have the good fortune to be in a situation to make him ample remuneration. As we have good sleighing at present, I expect this wil reach you soon and I shall undoubtedly have an answer before long. Accept this scrawl as a token of remembrance. May peace, prosperity, and happiness attend you and yours henceforth and forever more with respect. I subscribe myself your affectionate brother.
Very respectfully yours, — John Rogers