Wednesday, November 15, 2017

The California Trail

In 1862, when he was 75 years old, my ancestor Calvin Brewster left his home in Mt. Sterling, Iowa with his wife, Harriet (Cramer) Brewster, his younger children, Laura, Nancy, Isabel, [Silas] Ralph, and [John] Calvin, and his step-son Abe Daily, for California. His daughter, Laura, later wrote a short book about their journey, which took five months and covered more than a thousand miles. Here is a map of their approximate route. The blue markers represent places which were mentioned in the book or which I was able to determine from the description given. The book is Crossing the Plains with Ox Teams by Laura Brewster Boquist, copyright 1930 by Laura L. Tritt.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Letter From Grandma Sunday June 4, 1916

My darling Frank:

   I am so happy!  So perfectly happy that I almost burst with joy and expect to wake at any moment and find that I'm still dreaming.  I never knew such a state of bliss existed or that such love was in store for me.  I'm afraid to breath for fear something will happen and spoil it all.  Really, dearest, you don't know how hard it is to keep my secret and I'll simply have to let it out pretty soon or just explode.  I want to talk about it all the time and it is all I think of.  Poor Hazel just pesters me to death asking questions and I think she pretty well guesses the real state of affairs altho' I deny everything. When Mariann talks about her plans I simply nearly die wanting to tell mine & it's just awful not to.  I feel so dreadfully important now and almost like I had done something wonderful for the whole family is so lovely to me.  I told both the grandmothers yesterday & they are so interested & happy too.  They both think you are splendid and feel I've made a wise choice.  I feel so too & I love you so much more than you know.
Yours forever Allene

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Telegram from Grandpa 11 June 1916

Letters from Grandpa 6 June 1916

Southern Hotel
Bakersfield, Calif.

Miss Allene S. Kelley,

Dearest Mine: -

It's in my system and just keeps crying out and I can't go to bed till I tell you again, I love you. God only knows how much dear and how hard  I'm going to try to make your future one one [sic] unbroken period of happiness -- and I feel so good, -- I mean big, - proud, - elated, - happy, - jubilant, ---- oh I don't know, dearest, what it is!! I'm here and you're there and I'm going further away and I guess I'm crazy, that's all, so I'd better stop.

Always yours,


Bakersfield, Calif.
June 6, 1916

P. S. Dr. Whitesides "likes" you dear and I --- well haven't I told you I love you?