Unless otherwise noted, the following are excerpts from letters from Maria3 York to George Dallas4 York, and Jacob Prentice5 York has the originals.
26 Mar 1913
Church Street, Long Buckby, Rugby
Must tell you first that I am the only living daughter of William Thomas York, second son of Thomas and Mary York, whose maiden name was Dickens. I know no one here of that name now. My father, your grandfather brother, was born 1808, married Sarah Eyre, had 4 children born to them, the first Ephraim York who just past his 73rd birthday and myself in my 72nd year. Neither of us has married.
We are the only two now living in this town of our family, mine and yours. The other Yorks, if they once belonged to us, the Kinship has died out for neither my Grandma York nor my mother ever spoke of any. My mother lived to be 83 but my father died of fever leaving 3 of us under seven years old. He died about the year 1846 so it would be soon after your grandfather went abroad.
I was with Grandma York when she died. She had kept her bed for about 2 yrs.
George Kinch marrid Aunt Alice not Betsy, left one son and one daughter Betsy who is now living at Badby. Her address is Mrs. T. Ivens, Badby, nr Daventry, Northamptonshire.
26 Jun 1913
Our good pastor Mr. Ruston is quite elderly. Do not know the year. As near eighty has seventy. He came to us in the year 1876. We had 5 other to minister the word after the one Grandma York named in her letter. All he could know of her would be from the church records. I do not know anything more of intriste about her that I can remember just now. One time when visiting her she said you would not think that ten babes had sucked at my breasts.
Of that ten only know of seven: Aunt Maria died early, Sarah & Alice, Uncle Henery, my father William Thomas, Thomas and Samuel. So conclud the others died in infancy.
9 Oct 1913
The photo is one of my dear brother who (died in '75, the year I mean) before the first baby was born, which also died at birth. So you see dear G., our family dies out. He died in Kansas State.
20 Nov 1913
I paid a visit to Mr. Ruston to get what you wished to know concerning the burial of our relatives. He serched 3 curch books in my presance. But no record of burials had been kept untill he came the I was tould of was his own. What I wrote you before was from the (care taker) of the Chaple who was required to be presant at all burials, and would see the graves before and after burial.
The one who told me is about my age and dose not now fill that office, being to old for the work. She said these six Yorks where spoken of by the former one who now lies next my own mother. My mother did not to my knowledge visit my fathers grave, or ever show me the spot where he lay. The records our pastor has are of members entrance too church fellowship, nothing more.
11 Dec 1913
From Maria3 York to "Cousin Stevenson" (Lydia Maud3 York).
I am very glad you have the likeness of our grandma York. Should have been most glad too have gone too see it, before it was started to you, but saw no way I could that, yet I hope to see a coppy of it which I belive cousin Betsy Ivens has.
You ask if I ever heard grandma York speak of her father and mother; never once at any time did she speak of them, nor have I ever heard anyone else. I know nothing of any relations save her Cousen Sarah Dickens.
If her father and brother were killed in war it must have been in what is termed the French War when the great Battle of Waterloo was fought which was in 1815.
23 Apr 1914
Cousin Betsy Ivens is having trouble with her eldest son but what it is do not know only it relates to mony matters at one of the markets they attend as cattle dealers.
16 Jul 1914
About dear Grandma York, do not know of any special aliment to bring her end. It seemed old age and no doubt she needed better nursing but I belive it was much the same as poor get, neither better nor worse. Two neighbors used to go in to help with her night and morning.
The night she died was the only night I spent with her. She asked for her usual supper, a egg with a little bread and butter and ate it. Seemed quite consious of things but did not spake about anything, nor seemed to wish. About four oclock in the morning she passed very quietly away.
Dear cousin, cannot tell much about the cottage where Grandma York. It was simply one that was of the kind comonly built for the poor working class at that time, not at all nice, two small living rooms, three small bed doo.
The street door opned into the first living room and not very much at the back save behind where open feilds. Have not seen it more than twice in ten years, has it is much farther than I can walk. Yet I know the presant ocupyants, as they are connected with our Chaple.
21 Nov 1916
You wish too know in which room G.M. died. It is the one have marked so badly for top window right hand side (Sketch). I hear that it is in good repair and I know the peoaple who now live in it. They attend our Chaple.
9 Jan 1917
And sometimes when museing ore past and presant I feel that you have been given to me by our loving Father without whose notice not even a sparrow falls to the ground, in the place of the younger brother, who was called home in the year 1875, and today is his birthday. Born Janry 9 1844. For I now write too you with the same freedome has have done to him in past days.
4 Jul 1917
Then of Ann York. I met her in the street after tea on Sunday. It tackes her a very long time to get any distance. She said she was 93 years in October. I said you had enquired about her. She also said her husband was some realation too us but did not know what it was. I know also it is nor very near or should have known of the same.
Now must tell that Ida Kinch came over from Braunston last evening to see me with a freind. She said they did not start from there untill six o'clock, it was just after seven when they came in, gave a light refeshment, and went out with them to the grave yards and to see the schools so there was only general talk.
Said she will come again soon, a plain looking young person and was struck with her lickeness too her grandfather George Kinch, Aunts Alces husband. She dose not favior her now at all. It might come out as she gets older.
She has 5 sisters and 2 brothers. 1 brother married works on the Great Centeral Railway, the younger one at the war. 2 sisters married, and one older than herself has come too live at a gentlemans farmers here, has only been at Buckby 1 month. Comes to see me every week and try my best to make the visit plesant for her.
1 Aug 1918
Had a great surprize last week. William Kinch, Ada father, came to see. Of course was greatly pleased. He carries himself as quite a Christian man and his wife is quite a nice woman. Wish they were nearer to me.
22 Oct 1919
Have you received a verey old book that Chatchitsem. It was the only book I had that belonged too Grandma York. It had been lying ready to send you over two years only was afaraid too send it lest is should get to the sea bottom.
6 Apr 1920
Nellie Kinch is leaveing here and I expect will stay at home for a whille for rest. She has been here 3 years and there has been much she did not like. Nellie is home today. Her sister next in age to herself is being married today.
Excerpts from letters from Frank Eyre, cousin of Maria3 York on her mother's side to George Dallas4 York.
She is in the same institution that Ephraim was in. Sorry to say progress with her is very slow and I am much afraid she will not [be] able to return home.
28 Feb 1922
I hope some day if you pay us a visit that we shall be able to take you to the spot where she is laid along with her mother.
I am so sorry that the congregationalist do not publish their deaths in Nonconformist magazine or I should have sent to you. And the death has never been recorded in newspaper. The only note of the death I have is from the Daventry Institution.
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