The following letters were to Flora Swope who left Holt County, in 1880 and went to Colorado. The letters were written to her, from brothers, cousins and father. After each letter, she has written an explanation about who some of the people are, who are mentioned in the letter. Thank you to Betty Charnholm, a descendant of the BALDWIN and SWOPE families of Holt County, for sharing these letters.

September 22, 1880

Dear Sister,

It is with pleasure, I seat myself to answer your kind and over welcome letter. We are all well, at present, and I hope this will find you the same. I had the chills last week, but I am well now. Florry, you say you are getting so fat, and saying you could beat me in a fair foot race. I'm afraid you would lose your money, you aren't fat enough yet….Be careful and don't get too familiar with that young man or he might tromp your toes.

Well Florry, we are batching now. Molly is gone home. She went home a Monday. Kate stayed one day and night with us. It is a`raining to day. You asked whether it had quit raining or not, it rained every day for eight days. Tell Sam I am very sorry that his dog is dead. How is Cleopatra. Has she had any other fits? I'm very sorry to hear of her having fits. Tell Sam he need not be growling about the people of Holt not writing. If he had wrote to me I would have wrote to him.

Mr. Collier and his girl is not getting along very well. He was here this morning. Collier is in a fix now. Mr. WALLIS is about to play him out and he is in more trouble than any fellow you ever saw. You wanted to know if I had heard anything from Mr. FORD, nothing particular.

Joseph and Benny was down last week. They said he was alright. Well, I can't think of anything to write about so I will close.

Write soon, George SWOPE. To Florry.

NOTE: This letter was written to Florry SWOPE, in Colorado, from her brother George in Holt County. George and Flora were children of Christopher SWOPE and Phebe (BALDWIN) SWOPE. (Phebe had been married previously to Crittendon ROOT). Florry must have gone to Colorado earlier in 1880, perhaps for her health. Molly is Mary Ann, Flory's half-sister. (Christopher SWOPE was married to Eliza GOODWIN before he was married to Phebe). Kate is Eliza Catherine (SWOPE) BALDWIN, another half-sister to Flora. Sam is probably Sam BANISTER who married Cleopatra "Clara" (BALDWIN) CUNNINGHAM. I don't know who Collier is or Mr. WALLIS, probably friends. WALLIS could be WALLACE as there were quite a few WALLACE's in Holt Co. Mr. Ford is probably a friend. Joseph and Benny could be sons of William who married Francis LAMBERT and was son of John L. and Louisa BALDWIN. William lived in Fremont Co. Iowa.

October 5, 1880

Dear Flora,

I take my pen in hand to let you know that we are well at present, hoping that these few lines may find you enjoying the same blessing. We received your letter a week or two ago and was glad to hear that you were well and to hear that you got out there safe. We all want to see you very bad. I am very lonesome here especially when the boys are out at there work. I would have written sooner if I had had any paper, but the boys have been so busy with their hay they would not take time to go to town to get any.

Molly went home two weeks ago today. She made apple butter she said you told her to make. She canned grapes, what there was of them. She canned the peaches, what there was of them. There was only enough for six half-gallon cans full.

Jerry's has all been sick but they're all better. Will's family is all well. Sis was down here last Sunday. George has two spells of the chills, two chills each time. Lewis has had his health very well. I have had my health very well. George bought four calves today. He gave eleven dollars apiece for them. Margaret was here today and washed for us.

Mrs. MOODY and Mrs. NICKSON dried about a bushel of apples apiece. Mrs. ARMSTRONG dried about a third of a bushel. George sold the gray to Polk for sixty-five dollars. She had the big head. I am a getting' tolerable tired of keeping (house). I would not mind it so much if I had nothing else to do. I will come to a close by requesting you to write soon.

Christopher SWOPE.

We have might pretty weather here There has not been frost enough to kill the bean vines yet.

NOTE: Letter written to Flora SWOPE in Colorado from her father, Christopher SWOPE, in Holt Co., MO. Molly is Mary Ann (SWOPE) BANISTER, Florry's half-sister. Jerry is child of Phebe (BALDWIN) and Crittendon ROOT before she married Christopher SWOPE; he would be Flora's half brother. Not sure who Will was. George was Flora's brother. Lewis is also Flora's brother. George and Lewis were still at home with Christopher, the father, and unmarried in 1880. Not sure who Margaret was. Mrs. MOODY, NICKSON and ARMSTRONG are probably friends.

November 4th, 1880,

Dear Sister,

It is with pleasure I seat myself to write you a few lines to let you know that we are all well at present excepting me. I had a chill day before yesterday. You must be in some awful confining business that you never have time to write. I would like to hear from you very much and I want you to write soon as you get this letter. I wrote to you about six weeks ago and I think it is about time I was getting an answer. Well, I will quit quarreling at you, I guess, though you need a good walloping. It is raining today and the leaves are falling very fast.

Mr. GLENN met with a bad accident. He got his hay and shed and stable and corncrib burned down and burnt a hole in his hog-pen and let his hogs out and that was the worst of all.

Well, Florry, how do you like Colorado by this time? Sam and Clara, how are they getting along and what are they doing? Ed, how is he getting along and what is he a doing? I reckon you are getting so fat and feeling so well that you never think of coming home and I don't blame you. I wish I was out there, too, and see if I wouldn't get fat, too. Well, I guess I must close as I am in a hurry, so good by. Write as soon as you get this letter. Tell Sam and Clara to write, I want to hear from them.

Bye Bye, George.

NOTE: To Flora SWOPE in Manitau, Colorado from her Brother George SWOPE. Mr. Glenn is probably a neighbor. Sam is Sam BANNISTER and Clara is Cleopatra BALDWIN CUNNINGHAM, his wife. Ed is Edwin PHILLIPS, Flora's cousin, son of William PHILLIPS and Susan Mahala SWOPE. Ed went out to Colorado for his health. To Flora SWOPE in Colorado Springs, Colorado, From George SWOPE, her brother.

November 6th 1880

My dear Aunt,

I set myself down to write you a few lines to let you know that I am well and George is sick. All the rest are well now.

The baby can crawl. Dee BEALER is keeping saloon now. Sarah cooking dinner now. Pap is going to town now. Duck BALDWIN is dead. I heard you were working at the hotel for a living. All your beaus are well but Asa WIGONS….Asa WIGONS is staying at John PEWS. George SWOPE has got one of the old maids staying at grandfathers. What is Sam, the old coon, doing now? I want to know how big your boy is now. Mary took Ella down to her sisters. Cord is still in Iowa. Vina got a letter from John BELL. Florry, I would like to see you now. I and Sam is going to school now. I don't know anymore to write at present. Write soon. From Robert E. ROOT to Florry SWOPE.

Good Bye.

Remember me when this you see though many miles apart we be. Sarah BALDWIN has a fine gal at her house.

NOTE: To Flora from her nephew, Robert E. ROOT. Robert was son of Jeremiah ROOT, Flora's half brother. Dee BEALOR is probably a friend. Not sure who Sarah is. Duck BALDWIN is Susan America (BALDWIN) MINTON, daughter of John R. and Louisa BALDWIN. She died on Nov. 6, 1880. Asa WIGGENS is a friend. John PEWS is no relation. Sam is Sam BANISTER, mentioned earlier? Mary may be Mary Ann SWOPE who married Polk BANISTER. Mary Ann is Flora's half-sister. Ella may be Ella WILSON who married Lewis, Flora's brother. Don't know who Cord, Vina or John BELL is. The second Sam mentioned is brother to Robert E. ROOT. Sarah BALDWIN is probably Sarah CUNNINGHAM. She was the 2nd wife of Daniel P. BALDWIN, son of Jeremiah and Betsy (LONG) BALDWIN.

November 11, 1880

Well Flory I stand myself to let you know that we are all well as common and hope when these few lines come to hand these few lines may find you well. I believe the rest of the kin is well as far as I know. Duck MINTEN is dead. She died last Friday. We have all been sick this fall.

Well, Ben and Mag haven't married yet. Dan and Sarrilda still swings on the corner gate and there is some talk of Kate and Asa WIGGENS marrying. Dan's are all right, they have got a gal at their house. Dee BEALOR is running a saloon in Forest City. … And there is some talk of Susan BALDWIN and George FRAZIER a marrying. And your chum is allright, you know. I have just come home from St. Joe. George says he has got a new suit and new boots. Asa says he told you to not take any more phisil. Lily has got a new dress. Jerry took a phisile and doesn't feel so well. But the Baby is as fat as a pig.

Well I will bring my letter to a close by asking you to visit soon.

Good bye, from SJ and J ROOT.

Tell Sam and Clara to write. Tell them we are all well.

NOTE: To Flory SWOPE in Colorado from Jeremiah ROOT and wife S.J. in Holt Co., MO. Duck MINTEN is Susan America BALDWIN MINTON, daughter of John R. and Louisa BALDWIN. Not sure who Ben and Mag is. Dan is Daniel BALDWIN, son of Eliza Catherine SWOPE and Moses A.J. BALDWIN. Eliza is Flora's half sister. Dan married Sarrilda (LAMBERT) in 1882. Asa WIGGENS was a friend, not sure who Kate was. Dee BEALOR was a friend. Not sure who Susan BALDWIN and George FRAZIER was. Not sure Asa and Lily are. Asa LAMBERT married a SWOPE, but not sure which one. Phisil, I assume, is a medicine. Jerry is Jerry ROOT, half brother of Flora. Sam is Sam BANNISTER and Clara is Cleopatra BALDWIN CUNNINGHAM, his wife.

Mound City, MO
November 28, 1880

Mr. S. Banister and family

I again seat myself to write you a few lines to let you know that I have not forgotten you if you have me. I haven't heard from you for a long time nor from anyone else out there. Why don't you write once in six months? I have wrote several letters out there and haven't got any answer for months. Well, try to write once and a while.

Well Sam, times is better here than they have been for a long time, worse is plenty. Hands is getting $1.00 per day for gathering corn. Sam, I have sold my bottom land and got 7 ½ percent. There was a big supper in Mound City last Thursday night.

Sam, how are you getting along with your Dairy Business and how is your health now? Well I have harvested 1000 bushels of corn this fall. I have sold $200.00 worth at 23 cents. It is worth 25cents now. I sold 11 hogs for $160.00 at $4.10 per hundred. Well Sam, I have got 2 good span of mules. I want to sell one of them. I didn't know but you would be back this winter and I would let you have one of them. I haven't heard from Florry for a long time. How is she getting along and what is she a doing? Sam, I am going to send a deed in this letter for Florry to sign. I don't know her number so I will send it to you. I wish that you would see her for me if you please and send it back right away. If you will, I will do so much for you. You can tell her how to put her name on the line. If she wants the money sent to her I will send it. If not, ask her what she wants done with it….Well, hoping that it will find you all well.

Write soon, yours as ever, D.H. SWOPE.

Please send the deed right back.

December the 12th 1880

Dear Florry,

I take my pen in hand to let you know that we are all well at present, hoping that these few lines may find you enjoying the same blessing. We received your letter about a week ago and were glad to hear that you were well. The boys are nearly done gathering corn. They have a day or two gathering yet. They raised about 2000 bushels. They sold between 200 and 300 dollars worth and they have 8 or 9 bushels left. George bought 12 or 13 calves but he has had some bad luck. He has lost 3 calves. We have had some tolerable cold weather but we have had no snow of any amount. Doc's and Jerry's and Will's (families) are all well. We all want to see you very bad.

The house looks very lonesome when there is no woman about. We get along tolerable well. I do the cooking and housework. The boys do the out work. I will now send the rest of that story. There was one paper I did not get. The boys say they will try and get it from Doc. I believe I can't think of anything more to write now. So I will come to a close by requesting you to write soon.

Christopher SWOPE

December the 17th 1880

I wrote last Sunday and George said he wanted to write some in the letter and I waited for him to do it but he is gone to Polk's now so thought I would wait no longer. Pink RAMSEY has left him and run off with another man. She left him some time this week. The boys are done gathering corn.

NOTE: Doc is son of Christopher and Eliza, Flora's half-brother. Jerry is probably Jeremiah ROOT, son of Phoebe by her first husband, Crittendon ROOT. Not sure who Will is. Polk is James Polk BANISTER, who married Mary Ann "Mollie" SWOPE, dau of Christopher and Eliza and Flora's half-sister. Don't know who Pink RAMSEY is but apparently she had been going with George.

To Flora from nephew Robert E. ROOT

January 31, 1881

My Dear Aunt,

I set myself down to write you a few lines to let you know that I am well. Now I hope this few lines come to hand will find you the same. Cord BALDWIN is married to a young fellow in Iowa. Doll HUTTON is married to David MUNKRES. John R. BALDWIN is dead and Jack BANNISTER is dead. Henry LONG's wife is dead. Louiza is keeping house for John H. MINTEN now. Well, Flora, there is a heap of sickness here.

Well, Flora, all your old chums are well. Now I saw John LONG the other day. He was well. Dora MEK and Ed FOUNTAIN is married. Ella has got back and Perry took off his Crapes. Well, Flora, I am sorry you give out the notion of coming back. We would like to see you. Pap and Lewis went a fishing today. Alfred was a year old Saturday. Well, Flora, I have a pair of skates. We are going to skate after a while. Oh, yes, we had a find time coasting. Christmas day the hill was black. Well, Flora, you want to been here and seen Jim and Ella coasting. To excuse bad writing. Write soon.

Robert E ROOT to Flora SWOPE. Good Bye.

NOTE: David MUNKRES is son of Howard and Sarah (MUNKRES) MUNKRES, probably related somehow to Granville Perry MUNKRES who married Lucy BALDWIN, grandaughter Eliza (SWOPE) BALDWIN, half-sister to Flora. (The MUNKRES Genealogy says David, born 1858, married Armeda (DOLL) HUTTON in 1873. They had one son Roy who married Effie TOTTEN and had Alta and Louise.) John R. BALDWIN died on Jan 14, 1881. Don't know who Jack BANISTER is for sure but he died 22 Jan 1881. Henry LONG is probably related to Elizabeth LONG, Phoebe BALDWIN's mother. (Phoebe was Flora's mother). John H. MINTEN was married to Susan America BALDWIN and she died in 1880. Louiza is Mary Louisa FOREMAN who married John R. since John died and John H MINTEN is Mary Louisa's son-in-law. John LONG is probably another relative of Elizabeth LONG. Dora MEK is probably MEEK , not sure who Dora MEEK and Ed FOUNTAIN are, probably just friends. Not sure who Jim is, but big Jim BALDWIN is mentioned in later letters, also. Not sure who Perry and Ella are, but a crape is a band of crepe paper worn on the sleeve as a sign of mourning so I guess Perry liked Ella and quit mourning when she returned. Not sure who Alfred belongs to.

February 1881,
Mound City, Missouri

Well Florry, it is with pleasure I seat myself to answer your kind and ever welcome letter which I received the other day. We are all well at present except Jim. He is sick. We have a great deal of sickness in this neighborhood. Jack BANISTER is dead. Henry LONG's wife is dead. John R. BALDWIN is dead. Well, Florry, you say you wrote to Doc for your money and did not get it. I don't know why, he sent the money some time ago. Perhaps though you have got it by this time. You say you don't know when you are coming home.

You say you are going to buy some lambs if you get your money. I don't see how you are going to tend to lambs or what you are going to do with them. You can't run after and hunt them this cold weather. I think you had better let that job out. No one to look after them but you. Maybe you know best though or maybe you are going to take in someone to help you, if so that might sorty do.

Florry you said you heard that I was going to get married. I never heard of it. It surely can't be me. Maybe it was George KERR instead of me….You wanted to know when I thought you had better come home. I don't know, use your own pleasure about that. Zook has not got his things yet. I got a letter from him some few days ago. He wanted me to send them to him but I have not sent them yet. Well, when did you hear from Mr. Long last? I heard that you were getting letters from him but I did not believe it. Well I guess I must close for this. Bye Bye.

NOTE: To Flora SWOPE from her brother, George SWOPE. Jack BANISTER, Henry LONG and John R. BALDWIN were discussed in previous letter. Zook is probably a friend or business acquaintance. A Mr. ZOOK signed the probate papers for Eliza Goodwin SWOPE, first wife of Christopher SWOPE. Not sure which Mr. LONG Flora heard from.

Mound City, MO
April the 16, 1881

Dear Cousin,

I take the opportunity to write you a few lines. I arrived safe at home April the 1st. Found all well. Doc was just moving out so we moved in. Carry and Anna are well. They went up to Green Coudons today. They went up on the train. They expect to stay til Monday morning so I am keepin' batch as it sees my luck. Well, I believe that I am pretty good hand to keep batch, don't you think so? Although that hash you made was just splendid. The sweets, too….Well, how is your health since I last saw you. I forgot to ask you how your finger was the time I last saw you, tho'. I suppose it was all right or you would have mentioned it. Oh yes, how is that finger, that you had a hand in?

How is the boy's garden? Do you get the soda water to drink. I wish that I had a drink of it. Oh yes, there is lots of weddings here this spring. I will not mention only the two prominent men of the neighborhood, that is Mr. J.M. HUTTON and George SWOPE. J.M. HUTTON was married the 13th day of April and Mr. George SWOPE, your brother was married April the 7th to Miss Bette NOLAN. I suppose that you have heard of both weddings before now. You mustn't be mad at George for marrying for he has got a pretty wife, that accounts for him not writing to you. I told him to write to you, I guess he did, didn't he? Did you sell your cows?

Have you heard from Manitou? Did the postmaster send you the county paper? Is Mr. CHAMBER's family well? I saw Maggie and Linne BALDWIN. They was all well….I saw James SWOPE the day I got home. He said that they was all well. I saw your pa the next day after I got back. He was well. Jerry was there this morning. They was all well. I saw William.…he said they was all well. Charles MORRIS (could be MOSIER) has a sale the 23rd. He is a going to California, him and family. The Millers were all well, so far as I know. My health hasn't been very good since I have been back though I am better. I had a bad cold. I cut my foot yesterday, though not very bad, I am in hopes. Give my regards and best wishes to all inquiring friends. I remain as ever, your lovin' cousin, Edwin H. PHILLIPS.

To Flora SWOPE, my little girl, bye bye. Write soon and often.

NOTE: Doc is Flora's half-brother. Not sure who Carry and Anna are. Not sure if Green Coudons is a person or a place, I may not have Coudons spelled correctly. J.M. HUTTON is probably a friend and George is Flora's brother. He married Clarice Elizabeth "Bettie" NOLAND on 7 April 1881. Mr. CHAMBERS is probably a neighbor. Don't know who Maggie and Linne BALDWIN are, or Charles MORRIS or William or the MILLERS. Edwin is Flora's first cousin. Flora's father, Christopher, had a sister, Susan Mahala, who married William PHILLIPS and had Edwin.

May 11th.(about 1883)

Dear Brother and Sister,

I seat myself this afternoon to write you a few lines. Hoping to hear from you soon. This finds us all well and I hope it will find you enjoying the same. Well, Florry, it has been so long since I wrote to you I thought I would write you a good long letter to make up for last time. We haven't heard from you for so long we are getting very anxious to hear how you are a getting along. I hope you are getting ready to come home on a visit and stay all summer. I know we would have a good time.

We feel quite lonesome since Lewis went away. We have never got but one letter from him since he went away and it was only a very short one. He sent his picture back to us. Well Florry, we have got a fine boy. He was born the last day of February. He weighs 14 pounds. As he is a big boy we give him a big name. We named him Edward Elmer. I know you will wonder who he looks like. Everybody says it looks just like George so you know he is pretty. Of course, I think he is pretty and just ever so nice. George is planting his corn. We have got our garden all made and it is growing nice but it needs rain very bad.

Martha SWOPE has been sick for about two months but she is getting better now. Well, must tell you of the weddings. Emma CLARK and George GORDON and Jenny MEEK and Perry MURRY. Mr. GORDON and Em are living in Mound City. We got a letter from Tom's folks about 3 weeks ago. They were all well and are getting well pleased with the country. George says he is going to Washington this fall. I hope you will come up this summer and help me to coax him out of the notion for I don't want to go. It is so far and would be so wearisome. Well, Florry, George got me a new album and I want you and Jake to have your pictures taken and send to us. I would like ever so much to have them. If you will send them in the next letter, we will have ours taken and send to you. As we never saw your husband we would very much like to see him. I guess I will close for this time. Hoping to hear from you soon. George is going to Mound City this evening he thinks he will get a letter from Lewis or one from you. So no more, write soon.

From Bettie SWOPE to Jake and Florry STEINER.

Well, Florry, I will try to write a little to you. I am about done planting corn. It will take me about two days yet. I reckon you never think of going west anymore. I thought I would go out to Washington this fall. Well, I don't know much to write. The people and the neighborhood are about the same as they were. Lizzy WIGGENS and Em are still spoiling to marry. I don't know what will become of them. Em says she never had but one beau and never got a letter in her life. I will close for this time.

Write soon. From George to Florry.

NOTE: To Flora and Jake STEINER from Betty and George SWOPE in Mound City, Mo. (Flora married Jake STEINER 16 Jun 1881.) The letter must be written about 1883 as Elmer was born that year. Lewis was Flora's brother and he moved to Doniphan, MO. Martha SWOPE may be wife of Christopher M. SWOPE. Emma, George Gordon, Jenny and Perry MURRY and Lizzy WIGGINS must all be friends. Tom is probably Flora's half brother. He moved his family to Portland, OR for a few years. Flora has a half brother Tom but they wouldn't be getting a letter from his folks, so it must be in the next generation if he is a relative.

Dear Brother, Sister and Family,

We will try and answer your ever welcome letter we received some time ago. Have neglected writing longer than we ought to have done. We have been so very busy this spring and don't go to town often of busy season. Probably Lewis will have to go to town to have something fixed about farming tools and I don't have letter ready and not time to write for he is in hurry with his crop. He will get done plowing corn this month. Our crop looks well now. We had it very dry in May. We begun to think we were going to have another drought but don't look that way now. I have fine garden and my chicks are doing well.

Feed is so high, I just raise for our own use. I think corn is about 80 cents per bushel. We had enough corn to scant feed us through. Will have to buy some chicken feed. Well, Florry, you spoke of not being in good health. I hope you are well long before this time. We are all well. Hope these few lines may find you all in good health. We received a letter from George and Bettie in May. They were all well and wanted to know your address. He said they had got a letter from Polk and Mollie. They were well and thought where they lived was the greatest country on earth. We never get letters from them. I think George said their address was Paisley, Oregon when he was here last fall. Lewis likes the West. I don't know how I would like it. But I think I would like any healthy country and where it was not too hard to make a living. I hope we will decide this year whether we will make Ripley Co., MO our home or not. We have not made up our mind yet just what to do. Albert SWOPE sold his Holt Co., farm this spring and rented a big farm. He said he wanted to put out 4 or 5 hundred acres of corn. Doc has bought Becky BLAIR's place. I guess you know it. I think he paid $67 per acre. Albert got $55, I think, for his place. It was located close to where we used to live. Verne don't go to school. They don't have much school out in this back woods place. I want to send her when there is school. She don't think she wants to go to town and go to school. I guess she would if she was more acquainted there. I guess it is six o'clock. I can hear the whistle plain from town this evening. I guess we are going to have more rain. It rained yesterday and today. We want to go to town tomorrow. We have a few wild huckleberries and black berries ripe now. Well it will soon be the Fourth of July. I wish you folks could celebrate with us. Is the water good in that country? We have the worst water here I ever drank, not claimed to be very healthy. We use cistern water all the time in summer season. The climate is very changeable here, cool nights most generally. We don't have very cold winters but one notices cold so badly on account of such poorly put up houses. If it don't get too late, Verne will write some to Marie. She has gone with Lewis to put horses in the pasture. I will close for this time. Lewis and Ella to Florry and Jake.

NOTE:From Lewis' wife to Flora S. STEINER at 16 E. LaPlatte St., Butte, MT. Postage dated June 21, 1902 from Doniphan, MO. Mollie is Mary Ann, Flora's half-sister. She married Polk BANISTER and they moved to Paisley, OR. Albert is Doc SWOPE's son, Doc is Flora's half-brother. Vern is Vernell, Lewis and Ella's daughter. Becky BLAIR was a neighbor, Doc SWOPE had been executor of her estate. Marie is Flora's daughter.

Forest City, Mo.
July 15, 1905

Dear Sister,

I will write you in answer to your letter at hand. Will say we are all well and was so glad to hear from you for we had not heard from you for so long and you change places so often I was afraid we had lost track of you. We were surprised to hear Essie was married but glad to hear that she has done so well. In regard to Tom and his family, Tom is dead. He died about a year ago. Frank and Rose are at Oregon City. George is in Alabama somewhere, I do not know his address. Rose is married and I do not know her name. Uncle Dan is in the Poor House and I suppose Oregon, MO is his address.

Say, about three years ago you told me you were going to California and you were going to visit Polk and Mollie. Did you visit them? If so, tell me all about them, how they are getting along, what they are doing and what kind of a country it is. In regard to those hens you spoke of, they do not sell by the doz. any more, they sell by the lb. They will cost about 10 cts. a pound here, now, and hens will weigh from 5 to 8 lbs. apiece. But they are hard to buy at this season of the year. As for my work, I would not charge you anything. Well, everything looks fine in this country and times is good. Doc's and Kate's folks are well. I have not heard from Lewis since last winter. Well, I will close for this time. Give our love to Jake and the rest of the family. Write soon.

As ever, your brother and sister, George and Bettie.

NOTE: To Flora STEINER, 22 North Fourth St., Albuquerque, NM, from George SWOPE. Tom is half-brother to Flora. Frank, Rose and George are probably his children. Uncle Dan is Phebe BALDWIN's brother, Dan who married Ibby JOHNSTON (Phebe is Flora's mother). Mollie is Martha Ann, half-sister to Flora who married Polk BANISTER and moved to Paisley, OR. Kate is probably Eliza Catherine, Flora's half sister and Doc is Flora's half-brother.

Forest City, MO
May 28, 1909

Dear Sister,

I will write you in answer to your letter received some time ago. You will please excuse me for not writing sooner for I am so lousy about writing. We are all well and hope you are well by this time. Yes, I know Jerry's P.O. address. It is Couveta, Okla. I and Bettie were down to see them last fall. We had a good time and found them all well. Mart and George KERR are there, too. They are both married. Mart has two children, George has none. We visited them both and big Jim BALDWIN, too. Yes, I think Jerry is drawing a pension , now. Bob and Lillie Root are married. Lillie has been married twice. Her first man died. George and Sam are both at home.

We liked the country but it is unhealthy. But they all seem to be doing very well. They all own land of their own except Big Jim, he hasn't got anything. Well, how is Jake and your children getting along. You never said anything about them and where they were at. Elmer is farming this year. He is getting along nicely well. I suppose where you are it is the middle of summer. It is spring here, corn is just coming up. Few have begun to plow. Say, Florrie, as much as you run around, why don't you drop in here sometime. Will close, from Geo. and Bettie

NOTE: To Flora STEINER, Old Albuquerque, NM from George Swope. Jerry is Jeremiah ROOT, half-brother to Flora (he is son of Phebe, Flora's mother, by her first husband, Crittendon ROOT). Not sure who George and Mart KERR are. I believe Bob and George and Sam are Jerry's children. I am not sure if Lillie is Bob's brother or wife. Not sure who Big Jim is. Jake is Flora's husband, Jake STEINER. Elmer is George and Bettie's son. Don't know who big Jim is. Don't know who Mart and George KERR is. (There is a ref to Mr. George and Elizabeth KERR visiting Mrs. SWOPE in Mound City News about 1886, so this must be them. Maybe they are related and maybe just friends.) Elmer is George's son.