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James Low III September 23, 1843 letter to Thomas Huston


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September 23, 1843 letter from

James Low III

of Newburg, Pike County, Illinois, written from

Wesley, Somerset County, Maine to

Thomas Huston

of Newburg, Pike County, Illinois.

After James’ arrival in Pike County, Illinois, he began making plans to return to Maine to help relocate his family and friends from Brighton, Fairfield and Wesley, Maine to Pike County, Illinois. His return trip to Maine came shortly after his marriage to Margaret (Huston) Montgomery on July 1, 1843.

There are a number of interesting pieces of information imparted in the two letters that James wrote on September 23rd and September 26th and a few references that deserve clarification.

James8's mother and his stepfather, Bingham Jellerson, were no longer living in Brighton, Somerset County, Maine in 1843. They were living in Wesley, Washington County, Maine, as were his sister, Phebe8, and her husband, Rufus Jones, with whom James8 mentions catching a bear, in the September 26th letter.

James8 left Pittsfield quite soon after his July wedding to Margaret. By September 1st, he was already in Maine. He wrote to Margaret’s father, Thomas, on September 23rd, 1843 from Wesley, Washington County, Maine and to Margaret 3 days later. She received her letter, exactly one month later, on October 23rd.

The letter was found in a trunk of James8 Low III and transcribed as written by his great-great grandson, Bingham James Forrest12 Lowe. Punctuation and spelling errors have not been corrected.

10th generation: Frank, Forrest, Lenna, Arthur, Edward, Paul, Leland, Charles Doss, Pearl, Henry, James, George

Bingham James9 Low(e)   Aug 27, 1853 - Feb 10, 1923           (w: Mary D. Culver)                        of Newburg, Pike County, Illinois

James8 Low III                  Apr 27-1816 - Sep 2, 1889               (w: Margaret Huston Montgomery) of Clinton & Brighton, Maine / Newburg, Illinois

James7 Low Jr                   1796 - Mar 20, 1824                        (w: Mary Wyman)                           of Clinton, Maine (fought in War of 1812)

James6 Low Sr                   Jul 17, 1770 - bef 1830                    (w: Elizabeth "Betsy" Chase)           of Boxford, Massachusetts / Clinton, Maine

Nathan5 Low                     Oct 1, 1742 - Jul 24, 1804                (w: Lucy Lord)                                 of Ipswich & Boxford, Massachusetts

Caleb4 Low                        1707 - Jul 17, 1777                          (w: Abigail Varney)                         of Ipswich, Essex County, Massachusetts

David3 Low                       Aug 14, 1667 - Jun 2, 1746              (w: Mary Lamb)                               of Ipswich, Essex County, Massachusetts

Thomas2 Low                    May 8, 1631 - Apr 12, 1712             (w: Martha Boreman)        of Groton & Boxford, Suffolk, England / Ipswich, MA

Thomas1 Low                    1605 - Sep 8, 1677                           (w: Margaret Todd)           of Groton & Boxford, Suffolk, England / Ipswich, MA

Giles0 Low          unknown (Wife: Syseley Wall, marr 3/5/1601/02)     of Brancepeth, Durham, England; Groton & Boxford, Suffolk, England



Wesley, Washington County Maine. Sept 23 AD 1843.

Dear Farther in law and relatives. I take this opportunity to rite a few lines to you all to inform you that I am well and hope that these few lines will find you all well and injoying prosperity. Since I rote to you I have been to Brighton my old native town and found my friends all well and then I came to Farthers in Wesley and on the 1st day of September found them all well but mother poor as to the things of this life times is very hard here and Father can’t sell his farm so as to move this fall. They have property enough if they could get the value of it to carry them to Illinois and have a team left. I am grieved to think that I shall have to stay in this cold barren and lonesome country all winter but I shall have to take it patience as I can and you must take it patiencent to. Dear Farther I want you to carion my farm in next year if you will for I can’t get home in the spring time to plant we shall come as soon as we can get means to come money is scarse here and hard to be got. You can kill as many hogs as you think will make pork enough for you all and let the rest run and bread. If brother Lytle has not sold old moly cow or eather of the guns and if you do not want to beef the cow I would be glad if you could sell something of mine for cash and pay to David Brown for I am owing him 15 dollars with interest I want you to settle my taxes if you can Old Mr. Mason oes me 2 dollars in county orders that I lont him You will find it marked down in the pocket leger.

I wish you could get my wagon and harnes from Mr. Ebenezer Clarks he lives 7 miles north of Quincy and 1½ miles north of the (Soks?) jameslowiii,unkword,letter1843-09-23,section3ofbook.jpg Grove You can tel him that you want the wagon your self You had better put in (sharves?) jameslowiii,unkword2,letter1843-09-23,section3ofbook.jpg and bring it down with old George and he will now the horse so there will be no trouble in giting the wagon. I expect he will move away in the spring. I would be glad if you and Margrat could go to Nauvoo this fall and see Mary Ellin and see how brother Lyttle is getting along. If you do not go to Nauvoo I wis you would rite to Brother Lyttle and tell him that I want him to see David Brown and tell him that I cant get back so as to pay him by January but I shall com as soon as I can and probably I shall be home by June. If David will not wait I want you or Brother Lyttle to try and sell something of mine and pay him and if you cant sell anything I want you to see Mr. Roberson and see if you cant lone the money of him and give him any interest that he will charge and secure him with something of mine and I will pay him when I get home I want you to give my best respects to Brother Lyttle and his familey and tell him that I will pay him for all of his trouble for me and Mary Ellin. I want you to make an account of all that you do for Margrat and me and I will pay you when I come home I want you to rite the paticklers how you are getting along. My respects to you and your familey.


Your afection son until death. James Low


Farther in law = Thomas Huston, father of James’ wife, Margaret, and his deceased 1st wife, Elizabeth.

Farthers = Father’s: Bingham Jellerson, James8' step-father.

Mother: Mary (Wyman) (Low) Jellerson

Brother Lytle: This may be William Lytle who attended the Free Will Baptist Church in Pittsfield where James was a member. If it is the same “Brother Lytle,” he also attended the United Brethren Church that James helped establish in Newburg.

David Brown: Pike County, Illinois resident and farmer

Old Mr. Mason: This may be William Mason who attended the Free Will Baptist Church in Pittsfield where James was a member.

Ebenezer Clark, of Adams County, Illinois: James worked for him in 1836. Mr. Clark ran a lumber mill.

Mary Ellin=Mary Ellen Low. James’ daughter with his first wife, Elizabeth Huston. We do not know why she was in Navoo, Illinois staying with Brother Lytle. She was not quite 15 months old at the time the letter was written.

Mr. Roberson: Perhaps James Robertson who married Mary Gray on June 23, 1844, in Pike County.

Margrat = Margaret (Huston) (Montgomery) Low. James’ wife and the daughter of Thomas Huston.


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© 1999 by Bingham James Forrest Lowe [g.g.grandson of James Low(e)]

Email: Bingham J F Lowe @ Lowe Family Descendants.com

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November 17th, 2010 marks the 374th anniversary of the Low(e) Family in America.