This letter was written by Andrew J. White (1825-18xx), the son of Francis White (1792-1861) and Sarah Leeman (1793-1856) of Lincoln County, Maine. Census records indicate that Andrew was a physician. He wrote the letter to his younger brother, Jasper M. White (1835-18xx).
St. Anthony [Hennepin County, Minnesota]
March 20th 1856
I received a letter from you yesterday dated 15th February which seems to have been off on a spree as I got one near a week ago dated February 22d. There seems to have been one of mine lost — the one that I wrote about Land Warrants. And here I will say in a few words what I said in that. I will locate and do it well for ¼ of the land or for 20 percent cash recovering the warrants $1.25 per acre; that is $10 for 40, $20 for 80, $40 for 160. They are worth now here 1.12½ per acre.
We are now having fine weather. The snow is going off very fast and the streets are quite dry and it is beginning to look very much like farming. We have not had a drop of rain since November and no kind of a storm for three months save to the amount of say a ½ inch of feathery snow which would fall in the night with a bright sun in the morning. The present looks prosperous for St. Anthony. I think there will be a great number of buildings put up this season. But the logs, if they do not come down, it will knock us cold again.
I have traded my claim since I wrote you the other day. I got what I can safely call $1500, cleared $900. That will do for six weeks. I got a house and lot in the city and 40 acres of wood land and $100. What my next speculation will be, I do not know but I guess I will build a house. I have done well in the ten months I have been here. I have made at least $1800. I am in for $3000 this year.
I hope you will give your attention to your studies and by the time I get through, I may be able to help you into an business you may wish.
I said in my last that I would send on a note but I do not know how to write it till I know his terms which you will find out when you get the money. I will enclose the same directions that I put in the other for fear you may not get that.
You will hear from me again soon. Yours, — A. J. White
I want you to go down and get that money. Take it up to Pittston at Gardiner Bridge and leave it with Jeremiah Connor who keeps a store there and take a receipt for it in this form. Received of A. J. White by the hand of J. M. White $____ for William Hilton. You will keep out enough to satisfy your wants for the Spring Term. This must be done by the first or before of May. Take out your expenses.