Daniel Fox Letters

Daniel Fox’s Letters

Summary: Letters from Daniel Fox (1853-1928) to his sister Lois Rendell

Daniel lived near Willow Springs, Missouri, USA
Lois and her son Hubert lived in England

1913

Jan 5, 1913
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Topics: Dorothy seriously ill from caring for daughter & recovering slowly, Christian Scientists, B. (Brimington?), prints of the Cathedral, winter weather

Feb 4, 1913
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Topics: Bringing Dorothy from Ft Scott to the farm to continue recovery, Mama (Elizabeth), Alice, family circuit letter, Christian Science, cooking & meals

Feb 10, 1913
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Topics: Dorothy very frail but recovering, Daniel a “social animal,” not afraid to fight, enjoys intellectual conversation, an optimist & encourager, Lillian had appendicitis but recovered without operation

Mar 23, 1913
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Topics: Daniel played piano & sang Easter hymn, eggs for Easter, salted 800 lbs of meat, canned fruits & vegetables, abundant food, 10 springs on 240 acres, 3 brooks, farms connected by telephone, Dorothy’s health improving

Apr 13, 1913
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Topics: Daniel’s assessment of self; Father visited him, became ill in Missouri, died after returning to England; believes in evolution, careful not to press his beliefs on others, Lois’ husband was a pastor & died, Dorothy & baby are healthy, Jo’s baby born, severe weather in March all over U.S.; 500 peach trees plus pear, plum & apple; Max Hopkins (Win’s husband) practicing law, Frances taking gym & dancing lessons

May 4, 1913
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Topics: Mountain lions seen last winter, school on corner of Daniel’s property, bought local phone company to get service, arranged for rural mail delivery; previously bought run down houses, lived in & fixed up, then sold at profit; trains his horses, ticks & chiggers, gave up smoking 2 years ago

Jun 8, 1913
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Topics: Neighboring family visited, played piano & sang, borrowed books from Daniel’s library; 32nd degree Mason while in Ft Scott, references “The Great Work” frequently, daily farm schedule, sounds of animals, kids sleep at night under the trees

Jul 13, 1913
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Topics: Frances visiting for vacation & enjoys riding wild horses, Dorothy & baby still at farm, Lillian & husband at health resort, neighbors & families visit, fresh fruit & sauce & cider, lots of vegetables, variety of meats

Aug 3, 1913
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Topics: Exchanging many books on wide range of topics, packs & ships peaches for sale, Frances & Lillian have small cameras, circuit letter, how Alice & Jim got together, in court regarding tax assessment, Cyril kills rattlesnakes

Aug 29, 1913
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Topics: Wild fire threatened farm, family put it out, hot & dry weather, reliable water spring, Missouri skepticism, ordered books & shipped to Lois, careful to avoid intruding or influencing others, benefit & peace of mind from “The Great Work,” Winifred is like her mother, farm work, canning & drying foods

Oct 19, 1913
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Topics: Very gracious about letters, Lillian’s traits, he used to be quick tempered & high strung “before I learned my lesson,” doesn’t like having his picture made, Alice moved from L.A. to El Paso, traits of native Ozark men, books shared with Lois, garden, Dorothy returned to Ft Scott, Jo & Bob in Milwaukee

Nov 9, 1913
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Topics: Prefers improving his mind to casual conversation, auctioneer for pie supper, pies, prettiest girl & homeliest man contests, box supper, branding & de-horning cattle, early snow damaged trees

Dec 9, 1913
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Topics: Hosted 24 for Thanksgiving dinner, overnight guest to enjoy good music, “stunts,” leased additional 400 acres to try for one year & moved into house, foreign languages, Dorothy moved to Hoisington KS, saw mill, wide variety of skills, sense of humor

Dec 28, 1913
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Topics: Enjoys living & writing letters, Frances works in law office, reminiscing about railroad work

1916

Jan 23, 1916
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Topics: Daniel’s birthday letter & celebration, politics, Americans killed in Mexico, winter weather, gardening

Mar 1, 1916
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Topics: Military service: Hubert, Harold, Basil; Zeppelin raids, magazines & censor, winter weather, Frances gave birth, Lil childless

Mar 12, 1916
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Topics: War, Spring farming, attended school during Winter, new baby, forest fire

Mar 26, 1916 – Fragment
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Topics:  Censors, Hubert staying with Lois & not required to enlist

Apr 23, 1916
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Topics: British magazines, family circuit letter, U.S. magazines, war, Germans in Ozarks, Easter Sunday

May 7, 1916
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Topics: Censor, Zeppelin raids, farming, family visits, Germans, war with Mexico (Pancho Villa), Alice & Jim

Jun 11, 1916 – Fragment
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Topics: Magazines, wrong postage by mail carrier, Alice & Margaret

Jul 23, 1916
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Topics: Family visits, hot weather, crops affected, war news, railroad round trip tickets, Fort Scott house, Mexican war

Aug 22, 1916
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Topics: War news, compulsory military service, severe storm, crop damage, livestock, earlier storm in Fort Scott

Sep 3, 1916
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Topics: 32nd wedding anniversary, 10 years on the farm, school teacher boarding, Aunt Polly, censor, hot & dry weather, fires

Sep 17, 1916
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Topics: Singing, Taterhill Mountain, crops & foods, family visits, Cubist art, Lil & husband selling house

Oct 15, 1916
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Topics: Arthur Harriman & family, enjoying being grandpa

Nov 19, 1916
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Topics: Food supervision (rationing), foods, U.S. election, Lawrence (Bothwell) won county election

Dec 3, 1916
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Topics: Christmas, warm weather, Thanksgiving Day, stranger for Thanksgiving, concern & care for the sick, war, high prices, presidential candidate Hughes, prayer for peace, optimism

Dec 31, 1916 – Fragment
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Topics: Hopes for peace, received Christmas letter, Christmas dinner, hunting turkeys, cold weather, gifts & celebration for 4 poor families, Christmas tradition, Russian neighbor committed suicide, wishes for Happy New Year

1919

Feb 26, 1919
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Topics: Groundhogs & Groundhog Day, Harold in England, armistice, bees for honey, childhood incident, family photos, Lil in Chicago, appendix, flu, doctor, Harry almost robbed

Mar 25, 1919
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Topics: Daniel seriously ill, felt near death, Harold on furlough in France

Apr 7, 1919
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Topics: U.S. Englishmen forgot location of English town (Skegness), English relatives sent “treats” to Harold, Harold considering moving west to settle, flu widespread in Missouri

May 1, 1919
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Topics: Literary qualities in family, Daniel’s admiration of his mother, advice to his children, recovering slowly with setbacks, Dorothy’s daughter died, reminiscing about Breton (?) Hall, afraid of cancer, Frances & family visiting, Harold still in Germany

Jun 1, 1919
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Topics: Harold is in U.S., waiting for call from him, description of Harold’s itinerary before discharge, discussion of literary works, Elizabeth making pies for Harold, description of pies, affection between Daniel & Elizabeth

Jul 20, 1919
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Topics: Daniel health recovery & setbacks, weather, crops, price changes, Harold home, war stories

Aug 3, 1919
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Topics: Daniel’s accident, recovery, prohibition, family are all abstainers (see 12/5/20), weather, crops, quality of soil, Harold making repairs, divided land between Daniel & sons, joking with family

Sep 14, 1919
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Topics: Reminiscing about London & places he worked, bees, curious expressions, Harold and nettles, Harold reminiscing about Belgium & war, Daniel discarded his cane recovering from injury

Dec 28, 1919 – Fragment
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Topics: Roast possum for Thanksgiving dinner, story about Harold carrying dispatches in army

1920

Mar 28, 1920 – Fragment
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Topics: Weather, planting crops, twister damage, up all night with sick cow

Jun 13, 1920
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Topics: Maelstrom engulfing the world, Hubert trying to find housing for Lois, high income & costs in Detroit (Jo’), weather, 140 chickens for frying, light work, locusts, Harold & Cyril earning $8.50/day sawing timber

Jul 25, 1920
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Topics: Pictures of Lois & Hubert, Lincolnshire countryside, Ozark Mountains, Lillian & Frank visited, hot & dry, Harold & Cyril still in Iowa, Alice re earthquakes in L.A., Margaret graduated high school, Maxine graduating soon, Lois a homeopathic doctor, Lois & housing trouble

Dec 5, 1920
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Topics: Persimmons, Harold & Cyril coming home for Christmas, prohibition (beer, cider, wine), unexpected guests & heavy snow, worldwide uncertainty, Lois & housing trouble

1921

Jan 2, 1921
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Topics: Lois moved, raising & canning chickens, Christmas alone, Harold & Cyril with Lil & Dorothy’s families for Christmas, hard time for national economy

Feb 6, 1921
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Topics: Pictures, self assessment, Lawrence & Frances, Cyril enrolling in same auto mechanics school as Harold, Harold & Cyril not interested in farming, severe wind & forest fire

Apr 10, 1921
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Topics: Harold & Cyril’s training & jobs, magazines & pictures, fads, Einstein’s theory of relativity, prices for farm products, cold weather killed fruit crops, slow business, strikes in England

Jun 5, 1921
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Topics: Hubert’s pictures, Bob Eley’s jobs, unemployment, labor/management issues, Daniel worked hard as young man, Harold & Cyril’s jobs, weather & crops, Daniel loves to write letters

Aug 14, 1921
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Topics: Weather, calico ponies, theory of relativity, Russia, wild roses, birth of John Fox Eley, new road from Willow Springs past the farm, families on vacation, Harold & Cyril threshing wheat in Kansas

Oct 16, 1921
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Topics: Harold & Cyril home unannounced to help with harvest, want to leave their car with Daniel, Daniel learning to drive, badly stung removing colony of bees, British ministers changing doctrine, weather, rattlesnake

Dec 1, 1921
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Topics: Rattlesnake skin, Frances & Harold & Cyril home for Thanksgiving, big Thanksgiving celebration

Dec 7, 1921
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Topics: Flu, world peace, high unemployment, prices for farm products too low to sell, will butcher & can a beef, family drove car to town & got stuck in mud, new graded road is soft mud due to rain, severe lightning storm & damage

1922

Jan 8, 1922
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Topics: Christmas celebration, mild winter, Lois’ home cold, forest fires, Frances & son visiting, Harold & Cyril visiting, hawks killing chickens

Feb 5, 1922
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Topics: Received birthday letter, health, family dog, rattlesnake, Pawpaws, raising mules, Harold & Cyril burning a firebreak around the farm

Mar 12, 1922
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Topics: Wishes for Lois’ birthday

Mar 31, 1922
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Topics: Reminiscing Lois’ birth & childhood, weather, considering installing a radio, gave up “stimulants” (hard alcohol) years ago, Queen Mary’s wedding (?), incubating eggs, garden

May 28, 1922
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Topics: Good road near farm, lots of visitors, garden, boys hesitant to install radio because neighbors will come to listen, raising chickens

Jun 25, 1922
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Topics: Didn’t know family well, puzzled his family, kept straight by early teaching, charitable toward others’ beliefs, old tramp, planted wheat Lois sent, fond of birds & other wildlife, hot & dry weather, crops damaged, forest fires

Aug 27, 1922
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Topics: Circulating letters to family, Maxine, quotes Keats, rattlesnake, radio batteries a problem

Nov 19, 1922
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Topics: Lois’ eye problem, left hand shakes, tried using typewriter, always physically active, butchered & canned & pickled a steer

Dec 8, 1922
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Topics: The afterlife, anticipating Christmas, ordered a radio, selling chickens in town

Undated

Fragment
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Topics: Approaching age 70, recovering from illness, peaches, eggs, meats

Fragment
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Topics: Assessment of unidentified nationality, Hubert’s Easter holiday

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