Monday, October 20, 2014

All Hallows Eve 2014

Halloween or Hallowe'en, also known as Allhalloween, All Hallows' Eve, or All Saints' Eve, is a yearly celebration observed in a number of countries on 31 October, the eve of the Western Christian feast of All Hallows' Day. [Wikipedia]. 

In the Methodist Church, the word "saints" refers to all Christians, so for me All Saints Day is a celebration of all the Christians that have profoundly affected my life with acts of charity and mercy.  My grand aunt Aline Mayne Cavanagh 1902-1995 was a genealogy saint.  By the time I began my genealogy quest in 1989, my maternal grandfather, True Mayne had been long gone having passed away in 1967.  Fortunately I was able to connect with his sister, Aunt Aline.  She had preserved so much of the precious family history and she was eager to share it with me.

Left to right: The Mayne Siblings: Aline, Virgil, Paul, True [my grandfather], Joseph and David

Aline had books, letters and photographs that have truly become treasures to me.  She lived in Wilmington, Delaware at the Methodist Country Home.   She was in her late 80s when I first was able to visit with her at her home.   I sat with her and identified all of pictures that she had not already identified.  I asked her if I could borrow her family heirlooms so that I could copy them.  Fortunately she said yes.  I was able to get copies made of all of the material and then sent it back to her.
Some of the treasures included:  tintype photographs from the Civil War, letters written by Aline’s mother, Anna Elizabeth Banford Mayne in the 1890s, a letter describing the death of Aline’s great-grandmother, Ann Nevin in 1878 and dozens more photographs of Mayne and Banford family members.

Here is a transcription of the text of one of the letters that I received from Aunt Aline in 1990. Aline's note in the margin indicates that the letter refers to the death of her great-grandmother, Ann wife of Thomas NEVIN.  The letter has many misspellings.  I have left the spelling, punctuation and capitalization exactly as the author wrote it.

 April the 4 1878 

Dear cousin it is with pain that I right this evning or with distress for I will halve to tell you that death has bin a mong us and taken hour Dear granma away from us to heaven.  We buried her to day.  She took sick monday march the 24 and died thursday april the 3.  I received your kind and most welcom letter and was glad to here from you all and it was the 29 of march and on saturday and I red it to granma and she was glad to here from you.  She was on her death bed.

I will right more in a few days for I was up all night last night and I don't feel like righting mouch.  The doctors said her disease was old age and the stopping up of her breath.  She choked to death for want of getting breath. That was what killed her.

In my next letter I will tell you as mouch as I can and send you some picturs to and you must send me your pictur to or I will not send you any more.  I will right soon and I want you to right soon as you can.

So I must close for I am offel sleepy and I feel verry bad this evning.  Some of the family are going to the post office tomorrow.

So good by from your affectioned cousin.

S. T. Ashworth

Ann Nevin 1804-1878 and Anna Elizabeth Banford 1860-1938
Taken at J.P. Ball's Photographic Gallery, on 4th St. between Main & Walnut Streets, Cincinnati, Ohio.

After researching this letter for several years, I was able to discover that it was written by Stephen Thomas Ashworth 1859-1883 to his cousin [my great grandmother] Anna Elizabeth Banford.

Newspaper article describing the death of Stephen Thomas Ashworth.

No comments:

Post a Comment