1827 letter from Chester Township, Wayne County

This is a copy of an 1827 letter written by John Funk of Chester Township, Wayne County, Ohio, to his brother-in-law, John Stoner, of Pennsylvania. The letter has been retyped, using the exact language and spelling these pioneers used, with a few editorial comments in parenthesis.

Envelope addressed to: 

Mr. John Stoner, Easthuntingdon Township, Westmoreland County Penn. Mountpleasant Post Office, 18 ¾ cent postage (?) Wooster O, 12 July


July the 10th, 1827. Chester, Ohio

I was just now thinking [for Several] reasons] to spend my Resting Spell in writing a few lins to you, as we often think about you and at this time we have often something to talk and to wonder concerning the people in your Country as regards (?) your healths, and so forth. We are all well at presant and hope these few lines may find you in the same State of health. tell Jacob Kinstman (?) we have received on the 5tof of July his letter, and will after some time write to him an answer, but we was much surprizd of the Marriage of Jacob Shoup and Polly Louck but so be it, further I let you no that your brother David ia with us at this time and intends to stay a few weeks with us; he is now working for me in the clearing and tomorrow we all intend to go to reap for Mrs. (?) Christy. Today I am just about to finish my rie (rye); my wheat is notyet ripe, Jacob Kinstman has declined taking Flacks (?) mill. If you have any thoughts of coming to this Country and at all inclined to have a mill, I thinck it would sute you. He has ground nine thousand bushels from the first of October until the first of July and I can testify that we had as good bread ground in that mill as we ever have in your Country and as white, there is some good propperties for sale hear both improved and unimproved that can be bought on reasonable terms. Sister Matty, I have a pretty good gardon, this year we have redishes and Salled (lettuce) and onionz in abundance and will have in a few days plenty of beans. Your Chees was very good and the apple butter is good, yet if there was only more of it. milk and butter we have plenty and milk 3 cows and the fourth just got a calf. butter is 6 cents at Wooster.

Your Brother David Says that he was now pretty much through this State, and has seen a goodeal of it, and Seems to like it the best in our neighborhood, and intends to buy here as soon as harvest is over if he can Sute himself of which there is no dout. The place that he was determined to buy is now Sold to a good honest dutchman with the hame of Darck that is joining me. Dark has a married son and Son-inlaw and a large family of growing Children which will all Settle on that half Section joining me; we will in a few days take a look at a quarter that Cornerz with me, which is reported to be as good a quarter of unimproved there is in the neighborhood with a good spring there on; and I am in great hopes of him for a neighbor and som more of You. The Land is still rising; those that would wish to buy, the soner the better.

The Cannal is made from Cleavland to Acron and have made a voyage on it from Acron to Cleavland and back again on the forth of July accompanied with the Governer of this State and in the Start one man was drowned. his feet slipt in drawing Lock Gate to Let the Boat threw and fell in. We have 30 miles to Acron and pretty good roadz. The(y) intend giving as much for flouer at Acron within 10cents per barrel, as it will fetch at Cleavland flower. at this time Superfine is 3 dollarz per barral, Common two dollarz fifty per barrel. we Shall Soon Expect a good market. The one that has nothing to take is farthest from it. We must now Conclud. I must go to Cradling and David to Grubing (grubbing). we ar all well and remember our kind Love to you all brotherz and Sisterz and to them it may meet with.

John Funck and

Maria Funck

David Stoner

(In German:) Loving greeting to David Funck and the Mother Funck and also Mother Fuchs.

Flacks mill has at this time water plenty for one wheel Steady and often times both; I hope Some of you will Come to see us after harvest.

Editor’s note:

According to records supplied, John Funck’s wife, Maria, was born 13 November 1787, as Maria Fox (Fuchs), and died 22 February 1879 in Chester Tp., Wayne County, Ohio, and was buried at Chester Corner Cemetery.

John Stoner, the recipient of the letter, was married to Magdalena Fox (Fuchs), who was born 20 October 1791 in Chester Co., Pennsylvania, and died 21 April 1858 in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania. Magdalena and Maria were sisters.

David Stoner was born 3 April 1804 in Pennsylvania, married Barbara Bechtel  c 1828 in Richland County, and died 19 February 1860 in Milton Tp., Ashland County, Ohio, and was buried in Whisler Cemetery.

Property mentioned in the letter is near the intersection of Congress Road and Smithville Western Road in Chester Township, Wayne County.

First portion of a letter written from Wayne County, Ohio, in 1827 describes an abundant life in Chester Township.

Portion of Chester Township from the 1873 Caldwell’s Atlas of Wayne County. Property owned by Peter Dirck, possibly the “honest dutchman” mentioned in the letter, can be seen just above the center of the image.



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