Friday, September 13, 2013

So faryouwell my best be Loved Brother

     The following letter was written by Isaac McBee to his brother, Samuel McBee.  Samuel lived in Claiborne County, Tennessee.  Isaac lived in Marrowbone.  Marrowbone could refer to a location in Cumberland County, Kentucky (most likely) or in Pike County, Kentucky.  Both these locations would require a one way trip in excess of 150 miles through mountainous terrain.  This would not have been an easy trip especially at their age.  
     At the time of the letter Isaac would have been about 82 years old, while Samuel would have been about 74.   
     In the transcription that follows the image, I left the words as Isaac spelled them.  I added a few corrections in brackets.  Isaac had not used any punctuation so to make it a little easier to read I entered a blank line where I thought the punctuation should occur.  If you say the words with a southern drawl you can see he spelled the words phonetically.  Most likely Isaac had little or no formal schooling so we should be impressed that he even wrote a letter.

Marribone     Fry June the 10th 1846

Dear Brother 

I have taken my pen in han[d] to Let you know that I am Still a living  

all my Children is Marred [married] 

the two Last Marred and Living with me 

Janey was Brought to Bead [bed] the 6 Day of this month after the Cihld
was born  

She Lived three or four ouers [hours] and Died  

the Child is a living  

all my Children Is Dead and Gone but four 

Nancy is Living in Illinois in the gillene  

Ann is living in Johnson County Illinois and I am Living hear on Marrobone 

Worn down with old age and other complaints I have wanted to See you
the worst of all things I was in hopes that god Would put it in your head to Com and see me.  

I thougt I would Go and see you last fall but I found that I was not abel 

everey man is a free Eagent [agent] to do as he pleases  

give my love to Brother Israel and to all my Connection 

So I must Conclud I am in hopes that God will Bles you and yours for Evermore

So faryouwell my best be Loved Brother 

Isaac McBee

Isaac live about four more years while Samuel lived another 12 years.  I wonder if the brothers ever got together again. 

'gillene' may refer to Galena, Illinois a city on the Mississippi River.
If 'Fry' is the word that appears just prior to the date and refers to Friday, It is interesting that June 10, 1846 was a Wednesday.  This is a common error for older people.  I should know.

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