Saturday, September 10, 2011

He Returned to England

James Eames, son of John and Sarah Powell Eames, (born at White Rocks on Garway Hill, England) decided that he would return to England.  Here are a few tidbit from his letter that he wrote to his brothers in St. Louis, Missouri.  (Exerts from the book "Eames and Edwards Lineage" by Ruth S. Kelly.)

June 19, 1872
Clock Mills, England

Dear Brothers,

I now endeavor to write you a few lines hoping it will find you both well. I have not been very well since I landed, I caught a violent cold. I have had a mighty bad cold but it is nearly well now – Thank God for it. I am here at Liz’s mothers – I came here on Monday night last. Her brother met me at Eardsley Station. I stayed with her nearly a week in Hereford at Mrs. Prices. I accidentally met with her in the Market house. She had went from here that same day Wednesday. She is well and looks very well so now I think I had better not write any more backwards. 

I shall commence at the other end of my journey and tell you of my journey through – I started from Troy (Missouri) on Friday afternoon. I got to St. Louis – well, it was dark by the time I got off the train.  Went by omnibus to the ticket office and purchased a ticket through to New York by way of Chicago on the Illinois Central Railroad. All passengers were taken over to the other side of the river to East St. Louis by the same omnibus, on the steam ferry from thence to depot. There was no train leaving that night and by this time, it was getting late. Well, all passengers going that route had to stay until morning first train half past eight – arrived at Chicago half past nine that night – Saturday night. Then there was no train leaving there for New York until Sunday evening 15 minutes past five o’clock.

Chicago Fire 1871

I walked the desolate ruins over on Sunday and part of which was not burned down.  (The Great Chicago Fire started around 9 o'clock on Sunday evening, on October 8, 1871, somewhere near the O'Leary barn.)  They are rebuilding and putting up some splendid buildings. It will be a finer city than ever in a few years. I started on the Michigan Central Railroad, which runs along the edge of the lake perhaps 70 or 80 miles or less – reached Lake Erie on Monday morning, crossed it on the steam ferry in the cars, and reached Niagara Falls about 12 o’clock. Stopped 20 minutes for dinner and passed slowly over the Suspension Bridge. It is a beautiful scene. Reached New Jersey Tuesday morning 7 o’clock.  Crossed over to New York until Wednesday at 12 o’clock, had everything by this time. 

Came by steam ship Wisconsin on the Guion Line. She arrived at Queenstown Saturday evening just at dark. We had a view of the Irish Coast about 12 o’clock. Well, we reached Liverpool the next evening but could not cross the bar until the tide rose again. Well, she came in docks at 12 o’clock in the night – we could not leave the ship until 8 or 9 o’clock. Started raining from 2 to 5 that evening. Well, it rained on Tuesday morning – I walked about Hereford & got a little wet from which I think I caught cold. I was heartsick nearly half the way. It was very disagreeable.  My ticket from St. Louis to New York cost $22.25; from New York to Liverpool $30, from Liverpool to Hereford 9 shillings, from Troy to St. Louis $3.50.

Fanny and James Eames with Baby John R. Eames, circa 1879
James never returned to America but married his childhood sweetheart and stayed in Wales.

Where did I get copies of his letters? He wrote to his sister in Utah and she kept his letters which were passed down through several generations.  Other letters were obtained from the LDS church archives, a separate organization from the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.  Another descendant in Missouri had copies of letters from James as well. Contacting cousins has its rewards.

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