Pickard, Kate E.R., letter, Camillus, [N.Y.], May 30, 1857, to "Uncle Peter" [Peter Still]


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May 30, 1857.

My Dear Uncle Peter

It is a long time since I wrote you last - have you thought you were forgotten, or that I had ceased to feel any interest in your welfare? If so, you were greatly mistaken - I have thought of you very often, & have sometimes heard from you through Mr. Hamilton, and once in the winter Mr. May sent me a letter which he had received from you. He wished me to write you then, but I was not able to do so.

I do not know whether you have heard anything from us since I wrote you last - Our family has greatly changed since then. Mother Pickard died at Mr Lyon's on the 9th of last December. She was injured by falling on the step as she was going out the door, and died in a few hours. Almost at the moment she fell, my baby was born - a little

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daughter. At the same time a Miss Pickard - a cousin of ours was here very ill - so as to be unable to rise alone. It was a time of great trouble and you will hardly wonder that during the past winter our own cares and sorrows have so absorbed our attention that we have had little time or spirits to write letters. I was confined to my room all winter - did not go out of the house till the very last of March.

We are all now in usual health - Grandpa has had a severe sickness this Spring - two weeks ago we feared he would never recover, but he is now able to ride about. He has failed very much since you were here & particularly since Grandma's death.

My mother is in Buffalo with sister Julia who is just recovering from a severe [bilious] attack. I am sorry to say her family has received no such addition as you were wishing.

Mr Lyon's family are very well. Miss

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Jennie is at home, and the two little girls are growing finely. The little one that was a baby when you were here is a beauty & one of the smartest children you ever saw. But tell Aunt Vina, if she wants to see the prettiest, dearest, sweetest baby alive she must come & look at my little Jane

And so your dear old mother has gone to her reward! You should not mourn for her, Uncle Peter, for her sorrows are all past. She lived to suffer much, but her last days were cheered by a great joy. Surely her end was peace, and her memory is blessed. She is no doubt now rejoicing in the presence of the Blessed One, and holding sweet intercourse with the freed spirit of that dear brother whose form moulders in a land of slaves.

I am glad your children are all doing well. How do you get along in paying for your place? I am glad you have made a good beginning in selling your books. Last year there was so much political excitement,

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that no doubt, the sales were slower than they would otherwise have been. This year I think you will do still better, and on all you sell you get two profits - your share as proprietor & the agent's percentage besides. I hope you will be able to push it and get off a good number of the books during the year. You can do more than any one else if you do your best. I do not care so much about the small profit that I should receive as I do about your doing well. Keep up your courage Uncle Peter - you have proved yourself able to accomplish great things. Try - and let me hear from you oftener.

I have heard no news from Alabama that would interest you, except the death of Mr. Collier last fall & that of Judge Weakly of Florence.

Good bye Uncle Peter - Give much love to Aunt Vina from all of us. Can't one of your children write me a note now & then? If they can, I will take pleasure in answering it.

As ever, your true friend

Kate E. R. Pickard



Pickard, Kate E.R., letter, Camillus, [N.Y.], May 30, 1857, to "Uncle Peter" [Peter Still]


Kate Pickard acknowledges to Peter Still that she has not written to him for some time, although in the meantime she has learned news of him through Mr. Hamilton and Mr. May; updates Still on the health and activities of members of her family (including the birth of her daughter Jane); consoles him on the death of his mother; encourages him in selling the book about his life and family, noting that he gets both his “share as proprietor & the agent’s percentage besides”; and relates that, although there is not much news from Alabama, she has learned that Judge Weakl[e]y of Florence has died.


Special Collections and University Archives, Rutgers University Libraries




public domain


4 p.




Pickard, Kate E. R., “Pickard, Kate E.R., letter, Camillus, [N.Y.], May 30, 1857, to "Uncle Peter" [Peter Still],” Peter Still Digital Edition, accessed April 15, 2024, https://stillpapers.org/items/show/51.

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