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Found tucked away in an old family trunk among a packet of Civil War letters written by David Shoemaker, who served for three years in the 76th Pennsylvania Regt. was a fragile, yellowed with age letter, written from Cincinnati, Ohio, dated July 2l, 1827. It was written by two people, the first was a small boy named Lewis C Cist, who was the recipient's nephew; and the second was by his mother, named Jane Cist, the addressee's sister.
The letter was addressed to Mr. William Wilson, Camp Run, Beaver County, Pennsylvania Harmony Post Office, and was marked with 18 cents Postage having been paid by the sender. Its contents are copied verbatim as follows for your enjoyment.
Cincinnati July 21, 1827
We are all well. Last Sunday morning just as we had come home from Sunday School Jane was crying and Papa told us to all stay downstairs and him and Susan went upstairs and in two minutes came down again with something wrapped up in a piece of flannel which when they opened it appeared to be a baby which they called Godfrey.
There has been one boy shot, one house struck with lightning and one woman killed in the house, one fine carriage upset and an old man badly bruised since we have come here. There has been watermelons for about a week. I have seen a number of steam boats among which are the Albion, Atalanta, Bolivar, Cherokee, Eliza, Ben Franklin, Gen. Pike, Lady Washington, Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania.
I am your affectionate nephew,
Lewis I. Cist 1827
Cincinnati the 23rd 1827
To save you some anxious moments I left you without telling you of my cittuation but wheather you suspected it or not it will give you pleasure to learn that altho I am among straingers and without you and Mrs. Hoffa, which was a matter of great trouble to me indeed I thought I could not do without you and that I never could get over it. In this I have been agreeably disappointed for I do believe I had as easy a time as when I had you both with me and I have recovered as fast as I ever did.
My little Godfrey is nine days old and quite as large as Charles was at his age. The other children have all been as well as they were in Butler County. I was very afraid of little Charles taking the summer complaint as he has not yet got all his teeth, but he has escaped as yet and the people hear consider after June and July the season for summer complaint is over.
Little Jane has been very healthy since last I wrote to you with the exception of a little cough, but I hope she will get rid of that before winter as she is quite well otherwise and the warm season is longer here than with you and the fall is said to be very pleasant.
Lewis has given you a list of news in his own way. Ann thinks if she could write she would tell you a great deal. Remember me to all my friends particularly to Mr. Wilsons family and believe me, your sister, Jane.