Archive for February, 2009

Austin Letters 1918, 1935

Friday, February 13th, 2009

Mountain Grove House
C M Austin Proprietor
Eldred, Sullivan County, NY
September 25, 1918

To: Mr. C M Austin
c/o Mrs. Fowler
Monticello, New York

Tuesday night
Dear Mort
Received your letter tonight and will write a few lines. You have been away two days and it seems about that many weeks. You got another nice letter from Raymond. I will send it with this. He has been moved to Balboa. I think that is on the Pacific coast. Wasn’t Balboa the one who discovered the Pacific Ocean? I only wish we could feel as easy over Mac as we do him. I paid Raymond’s Red Cross money over today. They was after it.

Elizabeth still gets along well in school. LIttle Anthony made me a short call after school today. He is a bright kid. We are feeling fine, but only wish you were here. Still it is a good rest for you and likely you will have to work hard all winter.

Willie is feeling alright again so don’t worry about him or us. I will certainly be good for I have no chance to be bad. Take good care of yourself with lots of love,
Mountain Grove House
C M Austin Proprietor
Eldred, Sullivan County, NY
October 2, 1918

To: Mr. C M Austin
c/o Mrs. Fowler
Monticello, New York

Wednesday noon
My dear Mortimer
Just received your letter and was glad to hear you were well. We all feel fine, but this damp weather I keep the children in the house. Verna told me she heard there were a lot of cases of diphtheria in Barryville, but I doubt it. Our phone don’t work right, so I can not find out, but I am careful here.

I got a letter from Ray. I will send it to you. Tonight I am going to get Mac’s letters and the pictures together and send to him.
If Willie don’t feel well any morning, I won’t let him go to work. Mr. Scheuneman is home sick today and beside, he got a sliver in his eye putting on the roof of his building.

I will be glad when you get thourgh “courting” for it is certainly lonesome without anyone to scold.

Well, Elizabeth is ready to go back to school so I must close with love from all, Jennie

X Arthur’s kiss, X Elizabeth’s kiss, X Robbie’s kiss, X mine, X Willie’s
Barre, Massachusetts
December 18, 1918
Dear brother Mort,
Your letter dated Dec 17 at hand. I was very sorry to hear that McKinley was killed and feel his untimely death with you all. There is a great comfort in knowing he died in action in a good cause. It is with pride I think of your boys, not only of those that got in the army, but of Will for the ? and grit in the willingness he showed when I was at your house to get in the fight.

I am sorry to hear Jennie and the children were sick and hope they are well now.

I received a letter form Lillie last week. She said they are all well.

John Parmenter’s youngest daughter died in Chicago a short time ago from influenza.

Is Tom and Emma Collins in Eldred this winter or did they go to the city.

I don’t know of anything here that would interest you so will close with love to all. Eldred [James Eldred Austin, Grandpa Mort's brother.]

Ossining, NY, June 9, 1935

Dear Brother Mort
I was very sorry to read in the paper your house was burned. I hope you was well insured. Even if you were insured, it is a terrible loss and especially to one as old as you and Jennie and you have spent so many years of hard labor to get a home and then lose it by fire is mighty tough to hear. When you get time and fell like it, I hope you will write and tell me about it and what you are going to do. How is Jennie and the boys coming on? I hope they are all well and the boys have got work.

Where is Raymond living? How much of a family has he? Is Will married?

I suppose Lon and Ida are on the old place.

It is so cold we have a fire tonight.

Just after FDR was elected, Lon wrote me he was glad we had a Roosevelt to lead us out of the wilderness. Well, I think FDR has led us out of the wilderness into the jungle or the mire into the quagmire. I believe we will go down in the slough of despair until the people repent and call to God for help. Love to all, Ell [James Eldred Austin, Grandpa Mort's brother.]

Harry Irwin Briggs, newspaper article

Friday, February 13th, 2009

My mom sent me this newspaper article about her dad, and my grandfather, H I Briggs.

A Broad Pastor at Broadway
Rev. Briggs a “Westerner”
Wife is “Right Hand Man”
Now Drew Student
The little Methodist church at Broadway is one of the most successful churches in this section despite the fact that larger and more attractive churches are found nearby. There is a spirit of friendliness and cordiality found here where neighbors belonging to several different denominations meet for fellowship and worship and make the stranger want to come again.

A large contributing factor to this success is the personality and methods of the present pastor, the Rev. H. Irwin Briggs, who has been at Broadway since last April. Mr. Briggs is a “breezy Westerner,” a six-footer, and a man of action. He was brought up on a ranch; educated himself for a school teacher, became a “cowboy preacher” and later, a Home Missionary in Nebraska, South Dakota, and Wyoming. Mrs. Briggs, a former school teacher of Nebraska, has been his “right hand man” and proficient pardner in the work, since 1919. Mr. Briggs is in the East studying at Drew theological Seminary from which he will get his degree and his ordination soon.

The Briggs’ came east in a “rattlety bang” Ford, camping across the continent with two older children and a two month old baby. They were caught in a terrific rainstorm and the only thing they were able to keep dry was the baby, Mary Rosamond. John Clinton Briggs joined them since they came to New Jersey and though an “easterner” he is one of the liveliest members of the family and can hold his own with his “western sisters.”

Many a tale of the West Mr. Briggs draws from his hundreds of experiences and uses to interest his Eastern audiences. He is most interesting when he tells of risking his life working in a silver mine, when a premature explosion almost ended him, or when he met a catamount whose tracks were later found to be bigger than a bear’s or when he assisted in rounding up a gang of church-distrubing cattle-rustlers, desperadoes and roustabouts.

But one of Mr. Briggs’ best is the story of his first charge. It happened that in the country where he was sent to preach, the “sky pilot” was not appreciated. A tenderfoot parson from the East had been there a year before him, and the Easterner had made some mistakes in Western etiquette. So when Mr. Briggs arrived on the scene he had a reputation to live down. But also, unknown to his reception committee, he had lived on a ranch himself and he knew the life.

The first thing which his gentle host did was to set him on an insane vicious “locoed” horse. Mr. Briggs thought he was just bad and did not know the horse had partaken of that loco weed, but he rode him and he rode him well enough to satisfy his host. Not so the host’s son, who pretended to sympathize and said he should have a better horse the next day. (So he did). After that, and Mr. Briggs was still alive, six cowboys hitched a couple of wild broncos to a mowing machine and told him to mow the lawn. It was a somewhat hazardous task, but after a wild ride of a mile or so the broncos were finally subdued and driven back to the corral By this time the parson had gained the admiration of his cowboys, and ever after that they would do anything he asked them to do. They were ready to fight for him.

Within six months Mr. Briggs was one of the best known public characters in the region. He had organized clubs and societies such as never before had been seen there and life-long enemies came together and shook hands. One of his ideas was a mounted cowboy brass band and this would have been a reality if he had stayed. But his superiors decreed that he leave for other parts unorganized, and a new man was sent into the territory.

From experiences like this Mr. Briggs draws one of the main tenets of his philosophy, which is that Christianity can be talked about, but much better, it can be lived. It works. Through it people can be friends and children of God together, as in no other way. And living it is far superior to talking about it.

In addition to this Mr. Briggs was 25 months in the american Army during the war, serving in the St. Mihiel offensive and nursing many a wounded and dying buddy over there, was gassed himself and nearly passed out with the “flu.”

He has served the church and the cause of Christ in the famous Badlands of South Dakota, Wyoming and Nebraska; he participated in a logging drive when the old North woods was being hewn down; and he has preached to men of many states and stations in life. He has had many opportunities to try his personal bravery.

But says, Mr. Briggs, proudest of all am I of my family, and of the greatness of Jesus Christ. He says this with a slow Western drawl, as he works or the church at Broadway, and studies at drew.

Previous to accepting the Broadway charge, Mr. Briggs had served two other rural churches in Jersey. The first in the southern part of the state, where in a “when in Rome, do as the Romans do” way he loved most of his congregation whose principal means of livelihood was the raising and marketing of cranberries. So into the bogs he went, and after a short period of joshing by the pickers was able to keep his head up in milking the bushes of the luscious berries.

At Sparta in North Jersey he managed two village congregations (Sparta and Ogdensberg) and also busied himself in assembling the scattered flock in the hills of Mount Hopewell. The Mt. Hopewell Community church had burned to the ground a few years prior to that, and so they came together and worshipped under the trees, sitting on benches made from the slabs from sawed trees.

And his third stop in Jersey, of course, is Broadway, where he and also his congregation are enjoying his work.

However, Mr. Briggs is not to be taken for anything but a burly Westerner. In an Eastern parlor he is a distinct addition to a party, and the secrets here published about him would not be guessed if he were not asked where he came from, what he has done, etc. His manners and his soft way of speaking fit him for the drawing room.

Last conference, Mr. Briggs transferred to Broadway so that he would be nearer and could complete his course at the Theological Seminary at Madison, while at the same time he could carry on the work of the local church.

He is taking a course under the auspices of the Home Missions Board of the Methodist church and specializing in the Rural and Country church.

Letters and information: 1942 to 1958

Wednesday, February 11th, 2009

Postcard to Mr. AA Austin
Eldred, NY
Feb 4, 1942
from: Camp Upton
Have been very lucky so far. Hope it continues. Expect to stay here about 2 more weeks.

Co G Art
1222 Reception Center
Camp Upton, NY
on front: A company street scene, camp Upton, LI

Mrs. W. J. Waidler
Cario, NY Box 5
to: Miss Aida Austin
Box 35
Eldred, NY

Sep 7, 1942
Cairo, NY

Dear Cousin Aida
What a pleasure it was to get a letter form you. And the “Good morning” poem is lovely. I shall keep it and also pass it on. Why can not we have more of these beautiful sentiments. It does cheer us as we go down on the shady side. I did come almost breaking my neck, but my time has not come, yet.

The dear Lord was watching over me and I am glad to say I am getting better though I have to watch my step. I’m expecting to go to Brooklyn to spend the winter with Laura’s two girls. They are 55 and 52, so they are not girls any more, both grandmothers. But they want me to be with them and I’m glad to be with them. I am hoping I can get out to Eldred before it gets too cold. I could not go this summer because I could not travel among so many people. How quickly the year s roll around. I did not get the stone for my fathers grave last year, but hope to have it all done when I get up there. I will be real happy to know it is done.

Today is a perfect day. The mountains are lovely. I can sit in my window and look at them. It does not seem that the world is in such a commotion here. It is quiet and peaceful I am glad that you did go to France. Last night a friend and I went to see The PIed Piper. If you have not read the book it is grand. I hardly ever go to the movies, but it was well worth while to see that. We saw a lot of France last night. Thank you so much for writing me. With love to you and Lon and hoping to see you later,

Your cousin, Emily
[Does anyone know who this is, and how she is related?
—Louise Austin Smith]

from: 1 New St. Port Jervis
March 8, 1943

Dear Miss Austin
Have been thinking of you and wondering how you are. I I hope? you have been able to keep warm. We have had a long cold winter with plenty of snow. We was glad to be here near Harold’s work so he would avoid all the icy hills.

I was home one day last week for about an? hour, but had to hurry back as Harold was working nights and he had to be at the factory at 4:30. Well, I think Hitler is on the run and believe me I do hope he gets all he asked for. Don’t you?

I hope Lon is well and that you are taking good care of Miss Austin and that you don’t go out when it rains and will be home some time in April and then we can talk more. Should you write do tell me where your boys are. I sent a Christmas card to Billy at some camp in the south. I got the address from Frank. Frank is still at Chicopee Fall, Mass. He has not been home since Christmas.
I like living here in the winter better than staying at home. As one can get out once in a while. Well dinner is ready, so bye and write if you have a chance. Marcia goes to school two hours a day.

All send love,
Sincerely your old school pupil

Taxes for 1942
value $25 for 2 acres
collectors receipts Feb 17, 1943

armory and court exp—1 cent
county—63 cents
town—99 cents
highway 1—55 cents
total tax—2. 18
collector’s fees—2 cents
total amount paid—2.20
collector is Mary Crandall

Camp Shelby, Miss
Feb 7, 1943

Dear Brother,
I received your letter in which you sent Art’s letter. I also got a letter from Art, which I am enclosing. Have you heard from Bob? I had a letter from Aunt Anna in which she said that she had a letter from Bob written on 20th of December.

In your letter you said that you were sending a check to pay the taxes. Was the taxes just on the old place or was they on my place too? There should be three parcels of land to pay taxes on. One in Dad’s name, one in Mother’s and one in mine. Let me know the next time you write.

I am sending you a bond which I bought. I had it made out so you could cash it too. Let me know if you get it ok. Well I will close now as I can’t think of anymore to write.

Your brother, Bill

Shohola Penn Sept 11
Charles R. Austin
1051 Vandusen St. Stapleton, NY

Regret to inform you your brother private Robert C Austin was slightly wounded in action on seventeenth August in the North Africa area. You will be advised as reports of condition are received.
UL 10 the adjutant General
from PFC William Austin
Co F 338 Inf A
April 6, 1944
to: Mr. Charles R. Austin
Dear Brother,
Since I wrote you last, I have had a boat ride and am now somewhere in Italy. A short time after I got here, I got in touch with Arthur through the Red Cross and talked to him over the telephone. He tole me that Bob was in a hospital near by a couple days later he stopped in to see me and I got the afternoon off and we went to visit Bob. I guess Bob’s combat days are over as his right arm is in pretty bad shape. I am very much afraid that it will always be more or less crippled. He also has a touch of the yellow jaundice. He expects to be sent back to the states before long.

The war has sure left its mark on the country. Every meal there is always a bunch of children waiting along the mess lines for what the men have got left in their mess kits. Every where you see buildings that have been destroyed. I bet that generation of Italians have had enough of war. Well, I will close now hoping that you and your family are well. Write when you get time. Your brother, Bill

War Department
The adjutant General’s Office
In reply refer to Austin, Robert C.
PC-N NAT 060

12 April 1944
Mr. Charles R. Austin
Eldred, New York

Dear Mr. Austin:
It is with deep regret that I must confirm my recent telegram in which you were informed that your brother was wounded. As reports on our wounded are prepared under the adverse conditions of battle, they are of necessity brief and do not give the nature of the wound.

It may be comforting to you to know that our soldiers are given the best possible medical care by some of this country’s finest doctors who are assigned to the many excellent hospitals maintained at our overseas bases.

Theater Commanders submit periodic reports of progress on all hospitalized wounded, injured or seriously ill patients. Based on these reports, the War Department will keep you informed of his progress.

In order that mail may reach him as soon as possible, you should use the following temporary address until he is released from the hospital or a change of address is furnished you:
Pvt. Robert C. Austin 10,600,184 (Hosp.)
2628 Hospital Section,
APO 698 c/o postmaster
New York, New York

Since the above information is furnished only to you as the emergency addressee, it is requested that you inform all interested relatives and friends. It is my earnest hope that news of his release from the hospital will soon be forthcoming.
Sincerely yours,
Robert H. Dunlop
Brigadier General,
Acting The Adjutant General

Eldred, NY
April 12, 1944
Dear Gladys and Raymond
Have intended to write ever since we rec’d your card and invitation to visit you, but so many things to do in day and too tired at night, but now Aunt Charlotte is on her Easter vacation and Martin and I are pretty much alone, so now I’m going to get caught up on letters.

Orville stopped in yesterday to tell me about telegram that came about Bob. [he had been wounded] I hope you get word soon from him that it isn’t so bad—it’s almost too much to expect all three to come through safely, but we can hope. Arthur has been under the impression that Bob’s outfit was having a tough time and hoped he would be sent home on a well earned furlough.

For past few weeks I’ve intended writing all three boys—I write rather frequently to Bill and Art, but never have to Bob as he never has sent me any kind of correspondence, but I realize when he was growing up I was away and I really was a stranger to him and when Aunt C. left she took all three addresses as she too had planned to write. We were sure Bob would be glad to receive a couple of unexpected letters, but now I don’t know if I should write him or not—he probably will be moved far from his present or last address.

I never mention anything about illness etc. except Uncle El, to Bill and Arthur for I think Raymond knows best what they should know.

Bob Groteclass also has been seriously wounded. I believe he is being sent home.

Charlee was home for Easter Sunday. Tony and LIlly also Lily’s mother and sister came. They are all quite happy again. Tony had a bad habit for a couple of years—drink! But he has improved at least 75% and I guess he will be about cured in another few months. Now he wants to stop it and where there is a will etc.

I guess you know Clifford is helping me this year. He is a good worker and just like one of the family to have around. He hasn’t been able to get 6 days in in any week since he started. So much rain.

Isn’t it nice that you got moved farther into country before hot summer weather.

Will you have a little garden plot? It would be nice for the girls to work in to get a nice coat of tan. Your dad must like it where you are now. Gladys, for he didn’t usually make two trips in the winter, did he?

We were quite amused yesterday by a plane flying low and dipping. I suppose saluting. No one knew who it was then. but today we heard it was Jim Purcell of Barryville. I would call him “a pretty good pilot.” Clifford thought it might be Ed Toaspern at the time, for he swooped low over him. I guess you get most of Eldred news thru Emma and Barryville news through Orvill and his wife. 

Charles Myers is at Camp Shelby now and Aunt Minnie went to Binghamton on Monday to bring her Aunt Carrie Morre, a very old lady, home with her for the summer. She will spend the rest of the year with her two daughters in Binghamton and Oleau. She recently sold her home. Is very spry, but sight is poor. She (Aunt M.) was quite a sick person last winter and glad she is picking up so fast. I often feel like calling you up to have a little visit. but I’d have to call after ten in the evening as our line is very busy up to that time and there wouldn’t be much privacy. I wouldn’t mind anyone listening, but to have them ring in while talking about burns me up. I know who it was the last time you called us. Just a kid trying to get a number for someone else. I’ll tell him of it sometime.

It’s so cold and windy tonight. Hard to realize that it’s near middle of April. Our coal is gone and when it’s so windy, I’m afraid to open up drafts so the stoves aren’t throwing off much heat.

Do you expect to come up to Eldred this summer? If you do, would love to have you and family up to spend the day with me. If I got to town oftener, I’d know more news to write., but I haven’t even had a paper or mail for two days. If it’s clear tomorrow, Clifford will bring mail on way up.

Hope you are all well and that we hear encouraging news about Bob.
With love to all
Aunt Christine

[not sure when this was written]
Hq & Hq Co., Fifth Army,
Antiaircraft Section,
APC #464 c/o Postmaster,
New York, NY
Dear Uncle,
Was pleased to receive your letter of 19 November and to learn that you and Aunt Aida have been well. Trust the winter has not dealt too severely with you since then. The last few mornings a light skim of ice has frozen but a good stove in the tent keeps us comfortable. Up in the mountains the snow adds to the difficulties of life, however guess it can not be much worst than the rain and mud.

Glad to hear the fruit crop was plentiful this season and that you stored a good amount for the winter. Should help a lot to vary the store diet.

Am enclosing a money order for $20.00 for the church. HOpe the attendance will be better this winter but with so many people away from town, guess that can hardly be expected. All the minister’s daughters being away must be felt pretty badly in the church work. Well perhaps before too long the war will be over and things will return to normal; or let us hope a great deal better than ever before. Still I can’t help but feel that it is along ways in the future. Would not be much surprised but what this old world is in for a good deal more of turmoil than most people expect.

As you are undoubtedly reading in the papers we are going forward slowly at the present Time. but we are all confident the pace will be speeded up in the future.

Trust that you and Aunt Aida are still in good health and to hear from you soon.

Your nephew, Arthur

postage is free
From PFC William Austin
Co F 338 Inf
APO 85 Fort Dix, NY
To Mr. Charles Austin
1051 Van Duzer St.
Staten Island, New York

Got back in plenty of time last night your telegram was here. It got here Saturday night about 8 o’clock.
Your brother, Bill

taxes for 1945
value $25 for 2 acres
collectors receipts Jan 31, 1945
county—63 cents
town—89 cents
highway 1—63 cents
Ress’d school taxes for 1944—1.27
omitted tax school 1943—1.27
total tax—4.69
collector’s fees
total amount paid—4.69
collector is Mary M Crandall
postcard to
Pfc Robt C. Austin
England General Hospital
Atlantic City, NJ
March 14, 1945

Dear brother Bob
Just a card to let you know we are all ok and that we have heard from Bill and Art since you were here. Bill was out of the hospital and having some dental work done.

Art thinks he may be home on furlough early this summer. Hope we see you soon. It must be pretty near time for your furlough to commence. Hoping to see you soon and with best regards from all. Your brother, Ray

Albert Alonzo Austin obituary
Albert Alonzo Austin died in Eldred at 11:15 am on sunday after a short illness. He became ill while on his way to attend the service in the Eldred Methodist Church and failed to rally.

Mr. Austin, who was one of the oldest and highly respected residents of the town of Highland, was born September 28, 1857, in Eldred, the son of William Henry Austin and Mary Ann Eldred Austin. The greater part of his life was spent in Eldred where he was engaged in farming. For many years he was a trustee and local preacher in the Eldred Methodist Church.

Surviving relatives are four nephews—Arthur and William Austin of Eldred; Robert and Charles Austin of Huguenot Park, SI, and one niece, Mrs. Lillie Calkins of Bethel.

The body was brought to the Porter and Harding Funeral Home, 6 North Broome Street and the funeral, with the Rev. John L. Beebout officiating, will be held at 2 pm on Wednesday in the Methodist church at Eldred. Interment will be in Eldred Cemetery.

In Memory of Anna M. Leavenworth
born: October 5, 1875
Eldred, NY
Passed away: October 29, 1958
Indian Orchard, PA

Service held at Rasmussen’s Funeral HOme
Narrowsburg, New York
November 1, 1958 at 2 pm
Clergymen: The Rev. J. Rober Geyer
Final Resting Place: Eldred Cemetery, Eldred, NY

God hath not promised Skies always blue
Flower strewn pathways All our live through
God hath not promised sun without rain
Joy without sorrow, Peace without pain.

But God hath promised Strength for the day
Rest for the labor, Light for the way
Grace for the trials, Help from above,
Unfailing sympathy Undying love…

Austin Letters 1927 to 1939

Tuesday, February 3rd, 2009

Envelope from Mt Grove house
to: Mr. Chas Raymond Austin
Apartado 234
Maracaibo, Venezuela
South America
Sunday evening Jan 9th, 1927

My dear Ray,
I am staying home from church on purpose to make a special effort to answer some of my correspondence.

We are having quite severe weather, but before we know it, summer times will be here once more with all its work and worries. It is hard to tell which is the more agreeable of the two, summer or winter. Still winter does not hold the hardships that it used to for most of us. Likely you are sweating just at present.

Gladys called us up form Port Jervis last night and said she had heard from you, she as well as ourselves were growing anxious for it had been three weeks since she had heard when last we saw her one week ago today.
We are all well but Bobby. He has a sore throat, a number have chickenpox here.

Do they have radios where you are? If so, do you get any US stations? They say KDKA from Pittsburgh is heard in Australia.

It looks as though Uncle Sam might have some little trouble with Mexico and the Central American Countries. Today’s paper stated that China had asked the other powers for help to protect their citizens from the rebels who ever they are. Do you get any NY papers? If not, we could send you some of course the news would be old, but still new to you and others so far away from home.

Howard Pellon is dead and Charley Lass. Howard died of typhoid fever and Charley of pneumonia.
The people who usually go south are down there again, lucky ones.

Eddie Crail’s mother died leaving him a few thousand, so he built a house or bungalow up at the Lake. He took Leon Parker up there as care taker and partly out of sympathy for they say Leon is nearly dead of consumption.

Last fall, old Bishoff took a monkey up to them (Leon and Eddie) to take care for a few days and told them he would come back and get it again, but never showed up, so it was on their hands about a week ago Eddie found it with a box of matches trying to strike them. He hi i tover the head with stove poker and killed it. Leon began to swear at Eddie. So poor Leon was chased out. He is over with Mrs. Kirk now, right after that, Eddie and Patsy Clark were celebrating and got in some kind of a dispute, then they had trouble, so the other night, Bill saw Eddie Crail and he told him that “the surroundings were so crude here in Eldred,” that if he could sell his house here, he would “move to where the society was more congenial.”

Fred Morgan decided he would buy Eddie’s house. He wrote out a check for $4500. He did not sign it, but said he would as soon as Eddie gav him the deed of the house. The best of all, I thought was when Fred told that his wife had received a check for $10,000 for some Lumberland. They asked him what bank the check was on, and he said the custom house. So they all told him the money must be safe. Eldred certainly has its share of foolish characters.

Dory does not come in very often. They only have the movies once a week and they are not well attended which make this ruling ones sore. When you are sending cards, send some to Rev. Robert Collins, Madison, NJ. He will be surprised to hear form you from SA. Be sure and take good care of yourself and remember that we think of you every day and are looking forward to the time when you will return. Love from all,

Tenafly, NJ March 18, 1927
Dear Friend
I thank you for being willing to take my cattle for a while. Now we hear that the roads are very bad. So I am afraid to risk sending a moving van full of furniture up until later for fear they should get stuck in that road in front of my place as they did once before and not be able to get up to the house.

The same man that brought the cows down is going to take them back and he expects to go by the Monticello wood as that will be clear? road all the way. He is very good. What day, will depend on the weather. I wish I could send some of the rye ? we have so much of for bedding…

It will be nice if you will feed them well and they will be pretty well shaken if after the long ride.

Now Lon, about the second week in April, I would like you to open up the house and have Herman Bosch fix the pump in the kitchen. I will settle all bills with you when I get there. I am feeling better, but am not real well yet. Have had heart trouble.

The weather here is too warm for comfort as we have to keep the furnace going. It is not at all likely that it will continue so warm.

Hope this finds you and Ida well.
With kind regards to give both from all.
Your friend, Emma K. Collins

PS be careful of the cows for a few days after their long auto ride.

from Tenafly, NJ
Feb 14, 1928
To: Mr. A A Austin
Eldred, NY

Tenafly, NJ Feb 14, 1928

Dear Friend
I enclose check for months from January 15th to Feb 15th.

Now, Lon, I wish you would send me your bill for what hay you have let me have up to this date and also for any other bill I may owe you. Did you take all the hay from my barns? If there is no hay at my barn, I wish you would see that there is a ton put in there before the road is too bad to get any taken over it.

I forgot to say that when you trim the fruit trees, be sure and trim those down at the old place.

I will need 5? new floors in all then the stalls of the barn now. Do you think you could get Willie Austin to help you and do the work and get the lumber? If so, let me know if Willie isn’t helping you ? Rob Clark would do so.

Hope you and Ida are well. The winter has not been severe, but cold enough and we long for the ? and spring time.

With kind regards from us and ever your friend.
Emma K Collins

Be sure and send feed bills.
July 18, 1930
from Rev. John R. Ralph
ME parsonage
Glen Spey
Dear Bro Austin

You no doubt have learned from the newspapers we are celebrating “Founder’s Day” at the Glen Spey Church on Sunday First. Celebrating the 146th anniversary of the church. We would be very pleased to have you favour us with an address, knowing you to be connected in an internal way with the Church History.

The Service begins 2:30 pm and you will be the first speaker. Hoping you can come. I thank you in anticipation of your kindness.

Very Sincerely yours,
John R. Ralph

envelope: Box 346 E. Islip, NY
Feb 14, 1933
Mr. and Mrs Chas R. Austin
64 Hendricks Ave
New Brighton State Is., NY
Sympathy card
May it comfort and sustain you to know that the sincere sympathy of friends is ever near you.

Dear Raymond and Gladys,
I am so sorry for you that I don’t know how to express my grief. When the weather gets a little settled, try to bring the children and come over to see me. With much sympathy, Aunt Anna

from Eldred
Nov 27, 1934
To Mr. AA Austin, Eldred
thank you card for his sympathy from Chas and Harold Dunlap and family

Edwin Mortimer Austin b. Dec 11, 1937
written 1938?

Letter head The Pines C M Austin Proprietor
Tuesday Evening

Dear Gladys,
I surely was glad to hear of Edwin Mortimer and that you are all well. I wonder if Jake brought Marjorie back yet? I understood she expected to last Sunday.

That Irishman’s name was something like Marr or Murr, so the boys think. Am glad the children liked their things. I didn’t know Arthur was going to Port to get them, so I went down and bought some here in Eldred, but we found use for everything. The doll wouldn’t open its eyes wide as it should, I think there was something loose inside of it.

When you was in the hospital, did Melva get a box of cookies and an apron I sent her if not it was insured and we might as well look after it.

Do you remember Mr. and Mrs. Gill? They were people who rented here in summer and sometimes stayed during the winter. The last two winters they went south and one wee ago today, he dropped dead. He was brought back here form Florida and buried. His wife’s mother is buried here in Eldred.

Clara was married a week ago Sunday. Her husband seems very nice and he has some very nice people. They all came to pay their respects to Clara before the wedding. And they went to see his Father and Mother after they were married. his folks at least his parents live in Brooklyn.

I still have your Christmas present to get off to you. You will get it before next Christmas.

The boys are still working, but Bob has been home for a few days. I wonder if your father is still down with you?

I am doing some embroidery work and want to make a quilt or two. I can’t seem to find a pattern to make the dress I brought home by. I was to make it over for Melva, but all the patterns I run across have swing skirts and I am sure that is too narrow to make a full skirt. You remember it is a henna dress. I think you said Jake gave it to you. Likely I will run across a pattern later.

I would like to come down later if only for a day or two. Don’t think I can stand the round trip in one day. Aunt Charlotte and I was talking perhaps early in the spring we would go down to see a Shakespearean play. If we went on a Friday, I might get over for Sunday or Saturday. It’s just all talk so far.

Mrs. Garbarini sent you and Raymond a card. I will try and find it and write her address on it so you can send her one in return.

I should write a couple more letters, but am going to bed instead.

Love to you all, Mother
The Pines heading envelope and letterhead
Mrs Chas R. Austin
64 Hendricks Ave
New Brighton State Is., NY
March or May 22, 1938
Monday evening

Dear Gladys,
I did manage to send the apples (I promised the children) this morning. It is like summer today.

Yesterday they took John Love to the hospital. Three weeks ago he was taken down with pneumonia and from all accounts he has to have an operation like you had.

Annie Maier died with pneumonia. Julius had it, but has recovered and did you know Mr. Hanlon was buried the third of March? and Uncle Johnny died about three weeks ago. Everyone dies or is married up here this year.
Charlie Ort married Anna Bragne. Lawrence Racine is married.

Joe Dassori was up a week ago. I am having my kitchen all cleared up and it has had two coats of paint. The paper I sent for was sold out so am delayed at having the job finished. The room where you slept I have had a light paper put on and it looks very good.

When you have time you better write Anna a letter. Somehow she didn’t receive a card.

I have been in about three weeks with a cold but last week ventured out. I don’t know what in the world I would do if I got sick now so have to be careful.

Nellie is going to help me again this summer. Perhaps after we get everything straightened out I can get away for a week or two. Anyway will live in hopes even if I die in despair. Nellie has been quite sick herself.

Dr. Gulfruend was in this PJ hospital over a week. Little Frankie Clouse was operated on for mastoid this afternoon.

Truman is under the weather again. This time jaundice. If it don’t clear up by Thursday, he is going up to the Callicoon hospital again.

I suppose you will be up at Easter time. I hear Melva is to come and I understood Joanie was to spend the week with Jake. Tell Raymond to be careful about catching cold this weather.

Love to all, Mother


Hopewell Junction, NY
Dear Brother Lon,
I was glad to receive your letter and learn you were well.

We are having real spring weather. the farmers are plowing and getting ready to sow oats and make gardens. One neighbor planted garden peas a week ago.

The old must die and I am getting old very fast. I will soon be 74, but at heart I do not feel older than when I was 40.

Early morning I kneel and thank God for health and strength as I have it.

Sometime in April I will go to Ossining to live. I wish it was so I could go to Kansas with you in June, but it will be impossible to get away from my work this summer

I paid for and got a certificate for the plot where Emma is buried. The plot is 25 ft and 12 1/2 E and west. My wife and her sister bought the other half of plot and buried Father Parmenter in.
[This must be from James Eldred Austin]

December 1939 Christmas Card to A A Austin from Mae Parker
note on envelope: Parkers bought and lived in the Old “Eldred” homestead (Temperance Tavern) Still lived there when I was 12 or 13.

Mort, Jennie, Arthur and Robert Austin Letters: 1925, 1926

Monday, February 2nd, 2009

Envelope: Mountain Grove house
C M Austin Pop. Eldred, Sullivan County, NY
Feb 9, 1925

Eldred NY
Feb 9, 1925
Dear Raymond,
The snow up here is melting fast. In the morning it is froze so we go sleigh riding. We both got sleighs for Christmas. We saw the total eclipse of the sun. We have our wood sawed. Mrs. Cox hurt her leg sleigh riding and she came to school with a cane.

I am sick and I can not go to school. I had to stay in bed all day Sunday. I felt dizzy when I stood up. I hope you are feeling well. I am feeling better. I hope you can come up on LIncoln’s birthday. The rest of the family are feeling well. Arthur is as fat as ever.
Your brother Bob

Mountain Grove house letterhead
C M Austin, Proprietor
situated 5 miles from Shohola station
overlooking the village
can accommodate 30 guests
two daily mails
telephone connection
Eldred Sullivan County, NY
March 13th, 1925

Dear Brother,
I received your letter today. I understood that you were sending a money order in it. But no money order arrived with it. I think that you must have forgot to put it in because the letter seemed to be sealed alright when I got it. I am in no hurry for the money. I am letting you know right away because it might possibly been taken out of the letter.

We are having fairly nice weather for this time of the year. We are all very well and I hope you are the same. There is nothing new to write about so I will have to close.
Your brother, Bill


not sure when this was written
6 o’clock Monday morning

My Dear Raymond,
I wonder if you realize that we have not heard from you since you were home in February, so it is time you should spare a few moments and write to us. The reason for writing so early in the morning is that I have just got Bill off to work. They are building another dam on the Mongaup stream and about 35 men from this side of Mongaup go over nearly every morning.

Harold Dunlap is married. The event happened on Easter Sunday. The girl is a Catholic and the first day he went back to work he was nearly killed by a large branch falling on him. Quite a few of the Eldred boys have met with accidents over there. None serious.

As yet, clinton cut his foot quite badly and they took him to Port Jervis to have it attended to, but then they are working nearer Port than home. Mrs. Tuzza, Nettie, Margaret, Anna and a friend were up for the Easter week. It really seemed good to have them for we could or had to get out of our winter rut of living.

It keeps very cool and we still have snow and ice in spots.

Now try and send us a letter within a day or so as we cannot help but feel anxious at times.
Love from all
Envelope Box 111 Eldred NY
April 22, 1925
To Chas R. Austin
204 Richmond Terrace
St. George
Staten Island, NY

Wednesday morning
Dear Raymond,
We have not heard from you in quite some time.

Now I am writing by request of Mrs. Hattie Lieble in regards of the soldiers bonus. She wanted me to find out if you could get her a blank to fill out. I think you stated you had wrote to Washington DC to find out the details, but now I think it would be to Albany where your Bonus came from as this is a state and now a Federal bonus. Do what you can anyway.

We thought we would use Mac’s bonus to pay for the markers for his and Elizabeth’s graves which we expect soon, having been uneasy about ordering them, but likely some other way of paying will turn up.

We are having the house painted and will certainly look like a different place, so far the prospects for the summer appear good. Am up to my neck in house cleaning. The boys have a bicycle so have falls and fights galore.

from Mt Grove house
Sep 13, 1926
To Mr. Charles R. Austin
c/o Gulf Oil Company
Apartado 234
Maracibo, Venezuela
South America

Sunday evening
Dear Raymond,
At last I will try and write a few lines to you. the kids have both been under the weather. Arthur seems to have an ulcer or something like one in the upper part of his throat and a low fever. Dad is pretty well again. I see the “flu” is raging again so be very careful of yourself and don’t expose yourself more than necessary.

Marcella Flood was up for one week with us. Mrs. Tuzza wrote for your address. Likely Millie told her you were in the City.

We had quite a snow storm here last night and the beginning of last wee very cold weather. By Thursday night the thermometer fell to 24 degrees below zero. I imagine you must have felt it at Governor’s Island.

We received an announcement of Annie Eldred’s marriage last week. Yesterday we sent you the Gregg Magazine. Hope you get it alright and did you get the books we sent? The arithmetic and Grammar?

Bill is helping Harold in the “wood business”. I believe tomorrow Dad and he start to finish Mr. Sergeant’s logs.
Warrne Parker has been very sick. He had an operation for appendicitis.

Why don’t you write to Harold Fraley! I will send you his address if you will, likely he would go over to see you.
Pat Morgan called up to see us last sunday evening to get your address and during the evening he told us many interesting things. He said when he was in the army hospital with the “flu”, they came and tied a red tag on the foot of his bed.

Of course I was curious and asked what they did that for and he said “to show I was near death.” He said he would go back in the army in a moment only he thinks too much of his folks. Well will close and write a few more letters. Be very careful and not catch cold. With love from all. Mother

Bobbie is going to charge you one dollar the next time you make him mad.
From Mt Grove House
To Mr. C. R. Austin
204 Richmond Terrace
St. George
Staten Island, NY

Eldred, NY
Sept 20, 1926
Dear Raymond,
As I have nothing to do, I guess I might as well tell you a lot of junk.

I am taking Latin, Bioloby, Civics and algebra in High School. Next year I think I will take Spanish and German. Latin and Algebra are kind of hard, but Civics and biology are easy.

Friday in Biology, we had to pick a grasshopper apart. Some of the girls did not like it very much. Mr. PIerce teaches biology, and civics and Miss Hartmon teaches Latin and Algebra. I have to study pretty hard.

We are trying to make up a baseball team. Mr. Baque and Mr. Shubert are up here now.

We are having nice weather here. How do you like South America? Is it very hot? I wish I could come down and stay with you.

Mother, Dad, Bill and Bob are fielding? [feeling?] good. Mr. Shubert, Mr. Baque and i play cards every night. They are going away Wednesday.

That’s all the junk I can think as so I will close.


not sure when written, after labor day maybe soon after Dad’s letter above
Sunday evening

My dear Raymond,
I wonder if you ever thought that we have not heard a word of you since Labor day which seems along time ago. so we are beginning to think about your welfare.

We are counting on your vacation being the first two weeks in November and hope you will not disappoint us at that time. I think you are registered up here, so you can vote if you are here at election time which I hope you will be. Let us know what your plans are as soon as possible.

We have had a few days of winter here, but tonight it begins to warm up again.

I suppose you see Gladys each weekend. I think Aunt Minnie and Charlotte are down there now. For some reason or other, my relatives keep far away. Have seen grandfather twice this fall.

Bobby has not been very well lately and from now on I must watch his diet very careful. He has had glasses for about three weeks as school began the boys got the rope off the old flag pole and were having hanging parties. Bobby was one of the chief horse thieves and certainly had a close call. From the scar on his neck sometimes, I think his trouble with his head might come from that western necktie party.

Last night we were settled for a quiet evening when one of our city boarders walked in us. I believe he goes back tomorrow night.

Mr. Shubert went back last week. He had a very bad cold when he started home and we feel rather anxious as we have not heard from him as he said he would send a card.

The electric line is going up quite fast. I believe they are putting up the wire through the village now. I suppose the Baileys have returned to St. George.

I hope he improved in health while he was away. I heard the boys say that Raymond Myers had moved to Port Jervis this last week so he must have a winter’s work down there.

Dad and Bill are busy getting out wood. They have quite a lot ordered ahead I suppose on account of the coal strike.

Arthur is still as robust as ever and seems to enjoy life very much.

We want to walk down to the village and mail this tonight so it will be sure to go tomorrow.

Let us know when you are coming home. The boys watch the mail to hear from you.
Love from all, Mother

Mt Grove House paper
Sept 26, 1926

My dear son,
I have come home from church, the boys are all in bed. Your mother is reading a book. We are all very glad to get a letter from you.

We have had a good summer and made good. It is good to be alone. We have one woman here yet. I think she will go this coming Saturday. I am very busy trying to get my work done before winter.

Arthur is in High school and Bob is getting on good. I think they have sent you a letter. I suppose your mother and Gladys tell you all the news. I do so little writing that it is hard work for me to write a letter. So I do some of your mother’s work and get her to do the writing. She is very good at that.

I think about you everyday, and I pray that God will take care of you and keep you from all harm. I know when we are young, we do not see things as we do when we get older. I know it pays best to do right here and I am sure it will be better for us in the next world if we have done the best we can in this world.

I hope you will write home as often as you can. I am getting sleepy. So good night
With love,

Eldred, NY
Oct 22, 1926

Dear Raymond
I bought a donkey from May Parker. I can ride him. Last night I rode it up to Uncle Lon’s and tonight after school, Clifford Crandall came up and we rode him up to Uncle Lon’s. I’m going to get a harness and a pair of shafts for him to pull my wagon.

I am in the fifth grade and Arthur is in high school.

Last Saturday night, Gladys came up to our house.

Last week dad and Ed Myers went up to Collins and got all of her apples.

Mrs. Styles is my teacher.

Last Saturday I went nutting. I have the nuts drying by the stove. I’m going nutting tomorrow

ps: May Parker gave me the donkey. We got a radio. It’s name is Ned. I mean the donkey’s name.

The following may go with Bob’s letter:
no date
Mt Grove House letter heading
Sunday evening

My dear Raymond,
We have been a very wicked family today, not one of us have been to church and the reason, Dad, Arthur and Bobby are just recovering from the grippe. It has been the worst siege that we have had in a long time. They were all quite sick for a couple days, but will be alright if they do not catch more cold.

I suppose you heard of the death of Charley Lass and Harold Quick. Next it will be Nate Dailey. He has had one hemorrhage after another, the last week or two.

Mrs. Tuzza and Nellie have been here for two weeks. They returned to the city yesterday. Nellie had had pneumonia and the doctor told them to get out of the city a couple weeks. She seemed alright when she went back. My electric washer and radio have certainly taken some of the loneliness and hard work out of the winter months. I only wish I could remember one quarter of the things I hear over the radio. I certainly would be a wise one if my memory was good.

There has been a lot of sickness in Eldred. Part of the time Dr. Smith has been away. I think one of his brothers has been sick. We had Dr. Gofruend. He lives on the Becker place. He seems very good at his practice. He came to Eldred for his health and does not go out very much.

I am expecting quite a few of the NYC school teachers up for their Easter vacation. We gave our room downstairs to Nellie and her mother so it made it hared when Dad and the boys were sick to run up and downstairs.

I was expecting Gladys Tuesday. But her father told me she went to Binghamton instead.

Harold Dunlap has turned to be a hermit at least I have not seen him all winter. His wife and Mother stopped and had coffee with me the day of Geo LaBarrs funeral. From all accounts, Harold has settled down to be an old steady married man.

We hear some fine sermons over the radio, also lectures, music, etc. It seems that I must have heard almost everything worth hearing of course a lot of nonsense comes along with the other. Jacksonville is the farthest south and Kansas City West. We have heard California, but it was relayed. Also London has been relayed through a Canadian station. Davenport, Iowa, has a fine station, but it come on late at night.

Dory is as busy as ever and everybody keeps stringing him continually. Just now, it is over some girl. I know Harry Lang is the girl, but cannot make Dory believe it. Harry writes the letters and sends them to someone in the city and they mail them back to Dory and of course he answers them. They say the letters are very funny.

Dad had a nice letter from Robert Collins last week. When you or better still take time and send him some cards from South America. Send them to Rev. Robert Collins, Madison, NJ, care of Mrs. Louis Noe. Well, must close. Bob has a letter somewhere around to put in.

Love from all Mother.

Letters of two great aunts: Aida Austin, Charlotte Leavenworth

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

27 Orchard St., Port Jervis, NY
May 14th, 1913
Mr. A A Austin
Eldred, NY

Dear Mr. Austin,
After thinking the matter over, I have decided to take the principal room of the Eldred school this coming year, providing I pass the coming examinations which I fully intend to do.

I presume Miss Mills will have the primary department again—I hope so, but in case she shouldn’t be intending to teach in that room, there is a Miss Mary Twichell in the Teacher’s Training Class at present, a daughter of Mr. John Z. Twichell, who will want a school next year and who in my judgment would be just the person for the position.
I expect to be home May 29th for a few days and will make the contract, if you wish, during that time.

Yours truly,
Charlotte Leavenworth

June 30, 1914
Neew York State Education Department
County of Sullivan
This is to certify that William Austin, a pupil in district no. 4, town of Highland, has satisfactorily passed the examination fo the 2nd term of the fifth grade, based on the State elementary course of study for the public schools, and is qualified to pursue the course prescribed for the following term.
Charlotte Leavenworth, Teacher
Frederick J. Lewis, District Superintendent.

June 6, 1923, Aida goes to France
Dear Lon,
I did not stop for my check, but wrote to Mrs. Quick to send it to you. You see you can endorse my name on it and send it to the bank. We just called Dr. Austin’s folks on the phone and they are coming to the dock to see me off.

Mrs. Luzza and Nettie are going to the boat with me, too. It is after eight and we are going to start soon.
I will write as soon as I reach France.

Yours, Aida

June 12, 1923
Dear Lon,
We are near Plymouth England. They will send this from there. We reach Havre tonight and leave for Paris eleven o’clock tomorrow,
Yours, Aida
[post card with photo of 2nd class dining room.]

Paris, France
June 16, 1923
Dear Lon,
I was up to the American Bank yesterday and deposited what money I don’t need for the present. Then I went to the depot and hunted up my trunk. Of course, I took a cab because I didn’t know how to find the places, but today I took quite a little walk. I think I could soon find my way anywhere around Paris, but I am too tired to do much of anything. I will have to stay here a week anyway. I think before I start on.

I was terribly sick all the way over. I have certainly struck a good hotel. I shall hate to leave it although I feel anxious to get out to where I am going. But I don’t dare to start on until I feel like myself again. I will write to you when I leave here and just where I am going to stop. I don’t know just yet. I will have to find out all about it and I will write when I get more.

I haven’t been disappointed in my opinion of the French people, and have got along fine so far. I don’t think you would have regretted it if you had come.

I was so glad I was able to be on deck when we were at Plymouth. The English coast along there was beautiful. But I didn’t catch a glimpse of poor old Ireland. Tell Mr. Scott I was so sorry about that. And tell Mrs. Barth I am going to write to her soon.

I don’t know but that I left my key in my door. I wish you would see and if I did, I wish you would put the key where I told you I was going to put it. If you see Emma Stevens, tell her I forgot about my Post Office Box, but I don’t need it anyway. Will write soon again.
With love, Aida

Paris France
Sunday afternoon
June 24, 1923
Dear Lon,
I expect to leave Paris for Durr-Sur-Meuse tomorrow evening. I would have gone sooner, but had to go to the United States Lines Office to change my order for my return ticket, and another day I went to the American Passport Office, and yesterday I went down to the American consulate Genreral to report as an American Citizen.

So you see I have had quite a little to attend to since I got over feeling the effects of my voyage, and I didn’t want to hurry and get tired before starting on. I take the ten o’clock train tomorrow night and will reach Verdun early Tuesday morning and will have to wait there a little while for the train to Dun sur meuse. The man at the United States LInes who told me how to go, said I would be at Verdun long enough to get breakfast. Then I will go on to Dun-sur-meuse, and will have to look up a hotel there. I saw by the paper you were having such hot weather over there. It has been very cool here.

We haven’t had on ereal hot day since I came. But it has been a little warmer yesterday and today. I am so thankful that it has kept ool. I met a lady and gentleman from Boston at the Consulate yesterday and they said when it was warm over here, that Paris was a terrible hot place. I am feeling good and hope all are well at Eldred.

Remember me to Mrs. Barth and family. I have been so busy I haven’t written yet—but will try to write as soon as I get on to Dun-sur-meuse.

Give my kind regards to Mrs. Rothman and household.

With love,

Austin Letters: 1901 to 1911

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

15 20th Ave.
Paterson, NJ
November 19, 1901
Dear Friend,
Once more I take the pleasure in lifting the pen to write a few lines to let you know that I received your kind letter and pleased to learn that Eldred is the same as usual.

You said in the letter that you missed the fair flowers, well I guess you did, the fair flowers did not dare to steal any fruit this summer. My cousins had a bungalow down at Rockaway, Long Island so that is where I spent my vacation.

I went down there three times and certainly had a swell time, but did not get any fruit or coffee like we got at your house. I often think how bold I was to help myself the way I did. But they say in the country everything goes so it must have been that way with me…

Love to all

Oct 23, 1902
To: Lon Austin
Shohola Pike Co., PA

First Ave & First St.
Lakewood, NJ

Dear Lon,
Will you send me as soon as possible one barrel of assorted vegetables, one of apples and one of potatoes to the above address and oblige.
Yours truly,
(Mrs.) Chas. E. Proctor

December 8, 1902
To: Lon Austin
Shohola Pike Co.,
Lochada, PA

First Ave & First St.
Lakewood, NJ
December 7, 1902

Dear Lon
Do not send butter oftener than once in two weeks. We can not use more. Also send another barrel of assorted vegetables and one of apples. I should prefer Baldwin or Greenings and only a few Ben Davies.
Very truly yours,
(Mrs) Chas. E. Proctor

824 Madison St.
Brooklyn, NY
July 7, 1907
Dear Miss Austin
Have your ears tingled today? If they have not, it shows something is wrong with you and you must see to it.
We have been talking much about you today.

Mother wants to come up to your home again, so I told her I would write. She would like to come about the 8th of August. Jessie Hill would come with her if the board could be arranged to suit our pocketbook.

Could they have the rooms we occupied the first summer we were at your home? What board would you charge them?

It seems so strange now when I cannot go to the country, that mother has taken such a notion to go. When I could afford to go and wanted her to do so, she could not be tempted to go. Such is life. People are so contrary. I should love dearly to come but can not do so again this year.

I heard through Miss Crumney that you had passed through much sorrow during the past year. I sympathize very much with you all. Death comes to old and young, but when the aged leave us, we have the feeling that the work has been completed and take comfort. [Maybe referring to the death of Mary Eldred Austin in October 1906.]

At this moment, I am in my mind sitting on your piazza and breathing in the pure fresh air this lovely Sunday afternoon.

Miss Crumney retired in February, but a friend has invited her to go to Saratoga for the summer so she expects to be away in great style.

Will you let me know as soon as possible what you can do for us in rooms and price? Jessie and mother join me in sending love and kind regards.

December 1911
Albert A Austin being duly sworn deposes and says that he is a taxpayer in School District #4, Town of Highland County of Sullivan State of New York.

That on December 5, 1911, he obtained a certified copy of the school tax roll on file in the office of H. L. Eldred, School Tax Collector for Said District.

That certain amounts have been added to said roll, also that the name of George Sidwell has been placed on said roll. That the said Sidwell’s name is not on the assessment roll for the year 1911 and 1912. That the said H. L. Eldred committed the above named acts placing his own assessment on the property of the said Sidwell all without authority from anyone so far as I have been able to learn.

Also, that several other names were added and corrections made that the said H. L. Eldred acknowledged verbally in the presence of myself and George Carner that he made the above named additions and corrections. that the total amount raised by vote of the tax payers at the annual school meeting for the year 1911–1912 was $800. That the present roll by reason of said additions now calls for the sum of Ten Hundred sixty-six and 00/100 dollars 10066 00/100, by reason of the above your petitioner requests that you do not accept said roll without a thorough investigation.

Sworn to before me this 29 day of December 1911.
A A Austin
George Carner
Notary Public

Austin Letters 1891, 1896, 1897

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

Pillipsport, NY
September 21, 1891
Dear Brother
You will begin to think I have forgotten you all, but I haven’t. I was sick all day yesterday and day before with a sore throat, was able to teach today, although, I do not feel very well yet. I have not written to Mort yet.

I wish you would tell Maria to finish my dresses as soon as she can for I need them very much.

Hope you will write soon and tell me all the Eldred news.
Your loving sister, Aida

(Aida is in Eldred)
From: 13 Leland Ave
New Rochelle, NY
May 25, 1896

My dear Aida,
I received your letter of the seventeenth. I am glad you have so good a lookout for summer boarders. Who are they? Ladies or gentlemen and are they real nice?

I have made no plans for this summer as I am thinking some of going west, but I have not decided yet; if I do not go west you will probably see me at your place in July. You need not save a room for me because I am not sure enough for that.

I would like to help you fix up your house. I like that work if I am not all tired out.

I think your circular is quite swell. We have had so much rain here yesterday and today. If you had as much as we have, I am sure that spring would not go dry.

I am so glad your mother is able to be around. Is Maria with Lon now? Remember me to them. Has Dora work yet?

I expect Aida you will see me in July. Be sure and write and tell me who you are expecting for July; not that that would make any difference with my coming, I can assure you.

I wish school was over for this year and always for me. I am sick of it tonight.
Remember me to all your folks.
Lou or Lon Young

Envelope from Port Jervis
addressed to
A A Austin
Mt Grove House
Eldred, NY
January 26, 1897
Dear Lon:
Last Thursday, while Mamma was in New York and I was acting as housekeeper, Papa and I were much surprised to receive a barrel of apples and the butter enclosed from you.

Please accept our thanks for the apples and as to the butter, there is none too much for we can use it all and after using it, will weigh the crock and then papa will send you a check.

He would settle with you now, if you knew the number of pounds, but since you are willing to wait, he ought to be. The apples came just at the right time, for we were getting down to the last of what we had.

The presiding elder has been with us since Sunday, last evening at the Quarterly Conference. Papa informed the official men that he rather expects to leave here in April, so if he does, that will mean a new home for us.

Yesterday and today have been very cold here. Can’t imagine what it must be up in Sullivan.

Aunt Annie talks of coming up to visit us this winter and if she does, we will both come up for a few days and then accept your invitation.

Mama saw Aunt Annie and Mr. and Mrs. Walker last week at that time theyw were all well and inquired about you all.

Remember me to all, if you are in port Jervis at any time, come in to see us. Again, thank you for your kindness
Very sincerely Bertha SS Collins
New York, April 10, 1897
Dear Aunt Mary,
Your dear letter (no date) gladly received, and I do wish I had been a good child and answered it sooner, but then you know “I always did so!” Never mind, I am going to write now anyway.

Yes dear! You waited so long I had heard all the news. Willie Kyte’s death, Alvy Sergeant’s cancer, Isaac’s illness, ground broken for the new mansion and studio on the hill, proposed return of the alaska delegation, George Beck’s marriage etc!

Now whether my news will be any news to you or not, remains to be seen, but here goes. Bud’s sweet little girl has recovered from the diphtheria and appears to be as well as ever.

Ida received a letter from Polly Mapes saying that Rebecca had started (by easy stages) for home. She intended to stop on the way to visit her friends. I suppose they are as numerous as the sands of the desert or leaves of the forest. she will probably arrive in time to ride home on the first trolley car that runs between Barryville and Eldred!! Hoop La!!

Ida had a letter from Tina a short time ago. She was not very well, having just recovered from an attack of grippe, which had left her with Catarrh of the stomach that is pretty bad, I think. She does not say anything about coming home. I wish she would come. I should like to see her very much.

I received a letter from aunt Julia Austin a week or two ago. She and her sister Mamie? are living at Golden’s Bridge Westchester Co., they are keeping house. Jennie is married and lives about six mile from them.Sarah died last Thanksgiving day of pneumonia. I was very much surprised to hear this. She was always so much stronger than Mamie or Jule. I had not heard from them for six years and was very glad to hear from them once more.

Yes that was very sad for Annie C to lose her husband, poor girl! She has had her share of trouble.

Polly is with me yet. She sends her love and hope to see you soon. Mrs. Bassett was here yesterday. She often speaks of you and told me to send her love when I wrote.

You wrote that Maria had gone back of Proctor’s. Has she given up the idea of running the boarding house this summer? I hope you have all got rid of your colds.

Envelope addressed to A A Austin Eldred
Mt Grove House
May 23, 1897
My dear Lon,
It was a great disappointment that we were unable to come up and see you all before our departure from Port Jervis, but owing to our being busy, we had to forego the pleasure.

We had expected you and Mort would drive down and we could then have given you the crock and butter pail which belong to you, but since you did not come, we took them into the house next to ours and left them with Mrs. Ingram to keep until you call for them. So they are there awaiting your coming.

I expected to send you this word before, but with our moving and unpacking and getting settled, I’ve had very little time for writing.

We stayed at my Aunt’s, Mrs. Walker’s for ten days after leaving P. J. coming down here on the 4th. Since then, we have been busy trying to make things look homelike.

I’ve been terribly homesick for Port Jervis and the mountains, for this place is entirely different, but I’ll get used to it, and then we are near New York.

We have a very pleasant home, nice large yard and a garden, very nice church, fine pipe organ and good music.
The people are pleasant after we know them a I think we’ll like them. They have done much in the house for us and have shown their goodwill in many ways.

Sometime when you or Mort or the girls are in NY, just take a little trip down to Staten Island. It’s only an hour’s ride. Remember us all to all the family. We will hope to meet again in dear old Sullivan some future day.
Very sincerely,
Bertha SS Collins
Amboy Ave.
Tottenville, Staten Island, New York
You received papa’s last check, did you not?