All Series Level Scope and Content Notes
In the collection's three letters, Julia Atwood and two of her correspondents wrote about daily life and community news in early 19th century Connecticut. In a 4-page closely written letter dated January 26, 1839, Julia's friend Susan wrote that she and her family attended a series of lectures given by Mrs. Gove (Mary Gove Nichols) regarding physiology and other medical subjects. Mrs. Gove mentioned that she thought it would be a good idea to have an "Abolition Society" to abolish stays, and that tea and coffee were "very injurious." Susan also wrote about the lecture she attended given by "Mr. Lee" (Jason Lee) who went to the Oregon Territory with 3 other missionaries in 1834 to Christianize the Indians. They traveled on horseback for four and a half months from St. Louis, Missouri, to Oregon. After Lee's lecture, a Flathead Indian youth who came east with Lee spoke about the white people's talk of "pour Indians who …did not know about Jesus Christ," though he had seen white children play on the Sabbath since his arrival in Connecticut.
Julia Atwood wrote her cousin, Elvira Palmer, on September 9, 1840, and discussed her love of music; she also provided social news from Hartford, Connecticut. Atwood related an acquaintance's fear following an injury that "he would have to have his limb taken off it was so badly broken they could not make it heal. Oh dear, it will [be] dreadful if that should be the case." In the collection's final letter, Julia's mother chastised her for a lack of correspondence and gave a short update on her own life in Mansfield, Connecticut.