Alaska collection  1889-1895
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Collection Scope and Content Note

The Sophronia Osborn family letters (30 items) pertain to Sophronia Woodward Osborn and her husband, Dr. Elijah Osborn, who lived in Georgia and Alabama in the 1830s and 1840s.

Sophronia Woodward Osborn wrote 14 letters to her husband, a traveling dentist, from September 22, 1832-October 24, 1841, while he worked in multiple Georgia towns and, less frequently, in Louisiana and Alabama. Her first 3 letters concern her visit to family members in Providence, Rhode Island, in the fall of 1832; she shared family news and discussed her plan to return to Georgia. In her remaining letters, she described everyday life and parenthood in Savannah and Augusta, Georgia, where she raised Charles and Isaac Osborn. Charles, she reported, occasionally had disciplinary problems and later attempted to learn the catechism. Sophronia lamented the recent death of a young child in her letter of July 7, 1837. Elijah Osborn's 2 letters to his wife largely relate to his work in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and an unknown location; one includes a note for their daughter Gertrude. (December 19, 1844, and undated).

The remaining items include 13 personal letters to Sophronia and Elijah Osborn from numerous family members and friends, who reported on their lives in New York City and in various Connecticut towns. Sophronia's sister Lucia commented on her travels and her niece, Adeline R. Tingley, wrote about types of cloth. Other correspondents discussed their social lives and shared news of family members and acquaintances. The final item is a 2-page printed essay entitled "The Unity of the Spirit Evinced by Unity of Effort in the Cause of Christ" with a manuscript letter concerning religious topics.

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