Note from submitter
These letters are transcribed from original
written 1896 by Charles H. OSBORNE, living in Halltown, MO to his
parents, William Joseph and Betsey Eudemia OSBORNE who were living in TN. I
am posting it here because it mentions John and Mollie WHETSEL COBBLE, his
first cousin. I have just discovered John and Mollie moved to Eagle, Payne
Co, OK in 1899. I am hoping some of Mollie's g.grandchildren might see this
and have information to share about Mollie's grandmother, Esther OSBORNE
MURDUCK from Tennessee. My email address is
Hall Town, Mo
Apr. 26, 1896
Mr. W. J. Osborne,
Dear father Mother and brothers and sisters
I find myself this good sabath morning trying to
answer your kind letter of some time ago. It is raining this morning. We
have been having so much wet weather for the last week that there can't be
anything done. Last night was a fine night; I went over to Lawrenceburg to
the lodge it is about 8 miles from where John Cobble lives. I met up with
an old Tennesseean over there by the name of "Ginn" he came here from Knox
Co, Tenn. He is a brother to that preacher I used to hear you and mother
Note: (read more info about Mr. Ginn submitted by
I enjoyed myself fine last night it was the 1st
time since I came to Mo that I had the opportunity to visit my brethren. I
was examined found to be all O.K. took in and treated with the respect of a
brother mason. I was at a baptizing last Sunday and saw and baptized 2 men
1 woman. Work seems to be scarce in this part just now. I have not lost a
whole day since I came that was fit to work. I have made about $15.00 up to
this time. I have ten dollars stuck away in my old clothes. If I can stick
it through till harvest and threshing I will get $1 per day. I had a letter
from W. A. Osborne asking about this country and for advice. I would not
advise him to com untill fall any way and then he can do just as he sees fit
in regards to the matter. Well Frank I recon you and father are done
planting corn. People in this country are 1 month behind.
Well Father how does your wheat look? Wheat out
here is looking fair. Well Mother I recon you are still wanting to get off
from the Tenn Mountains. if you were off you wouldn't want to stay off. I
wonder if Ellen would know "Tarles" now?
Mary I guess you are not flirting with the boys
this spring are you? I would like to see you all and have a long chat with
you. I think I have learned something by coming out here. Well Father have
you petitioned the lodge yet? Recollect that note comes due the 13th of
next month. I would like for you to get it if you can. Though if you get
to needing that money too bad let me know. Maybe I can scrape it up for
you. I was at a republican primary at Plano yesterday. There are a good
many Populatise out here; but I don't think they amount to much.
I saw in the St. Louis Globe Democrat that Henry
R. Gidson was nominated for Congress and Will D. Wright for Elector. Hurah
for Morgan. Louisiana gave 40 thousand Rep. Hurah! for McKinley.
Well I guess I had as well close for this time.
write soon give me all the news. I ask one request of you father and Mother
and sister and that is you pray for me. I am still trying to live a
christian and by the Grace of God I think I will triumph at last.
Yours as ever
C. H. Osborne
Letter # 2
Hall Town, Mo
June 2, 1896
Dear father and Mother -----
I will now try to ans. your letter
of some time ago. I was glad to hear that you were all well. I am well at
the present. The wet weather still continues out here.
Harvest will soon be here and the corn in the
weeds. There will be lots of wheat to cut next week. I have worked 3 days
on the road. John Cobble and I cut sprouts yesterday. Corn is looking well
if it could only be cleaned.
Well Mother I ate green beans for dinner last
Sunday at my girls house. My girl is about 30 or 32 years old. Well Father
I guess you are done with the corn the 1st time.
I was at church last Sunday (May 24) at Hall
Town. The night before I was at Lawrenceburg to a masonic festival. We had
Strawberries and Ice Cream cake and Lemonade. Well Father you might imagine
that the people here are above the common people but they are not.
There is a great field in this section for the
preacher of the gospel. This country is poorly supplied with preachers.
Tenn is a more religious country than this. The people here are kind
hearted and all that.
I don't want you to understand though that Jesus
is without witness in this country. He has some here as well as elsewhere.
I guess you have heard about Uncle Martin Whetsel being dead he died the
29th of Apr at his home in Ill. He left 5 children and a wife. None of his
1st children were permitted to see him die.
Amanda was staying at a hotel. Albert was away
from home and Charley was in Iowa and Mollie in Mo. He died with the
Pneumonia fever. I understand he was a Mason. If he was it will be some
help to his wife and orphas children. I was not expecting to hear from Bob
McCartt's folks being dead.
When did you hear from Grandma? I heard from her
once since I came to Mo. Well I will close for this time by asking you to
still continue to pray for me.
John and Mollie says they send their bes wishes.
C. H. Osborne
P.S. We have been having hard storms in this
country fro the past 2 weeks. Mills barns and houses blown over all around
I guess you heard about St. Louis being tore all
to peices by the storm there were 400 people killed and a train blown off
the bridge into the river. This is the wettes season I ever saw. it rains
every day here lately. I didn't get to see the sun yesterday all day it was
so foggy and today is no better.
C. H. Osborne