Wauzeka, Jan. 7, (Or 4, MJM) 1863.
I received yours of the 29th (Probably 24th, MJM) ult the 2nd inst. I should have answered sooner, but the mud is so deep Frank could not go to the P. O. I expect to have an opportunity to send it tomorrow. I was happy to hear that your health is improving, if it is slowly, although I thought you would come home as soon as you got well enough to stand the journey; but I see by your letter that I am doomed to disappointment. I hope it will be for the best, whatever course you decide upon. But I need not tell you that it would be a great satisfaction to me to have you here; for I have written the same to you every week, and sometimes twice a week, since I received your first that informed me of your sickness. I have received 6 letters from you since the 10th of Nov. and have written this makes 8. I think you will get my communications as often as you want to answer, if you stay in one place long enough for them to reach you. But you can write as often as you please and I shall write once a week if nothing happens more than common, and if there does, I shall write oftener.
I am sorry you have had such bad luck with your money. But if you regain your health and get home in as good condition as you left, I shall be truly thankful. The sum of a few dollars will not make any difference to us; although it would have helped me to buy some things for myself and children. But we can get along without them, as we have got plenty to eat and a good warm house to live in. Ada and myself made the mortar and plastered where the plastering was off. I whitewashed. So you see we are nice. If you were only here to enjoy it with us it would seem so much better.
We were all together last Monday with the exception of yourself. I suppose you will get a letter from Manley before you will this. He said he would write to you soon in answer to the one you sent to the Prairie (Prairie du Chien - MJM). We enjoyed their visit. Only for the empty seat at the table we should have had a great time. Manley's wife is a good singer, and we had both vocal and instrumental music. The children think a great deal of Elvira.
Henry is trapping this winter. He could not go away to work. Fur is very high; rats ¢ a piece. (Musk rats, of course - MJM) We help him about taking care of the cattle as much as we can. They all look first rate. I wish you would tell me who told you one of the oxen was used up for a work ox. Rock has lost part of his tail. Manley tole you of that when it first came off, which was soon after you was home. They are as good a team as any one need wish for. They have not been hurt for work at all. They are very handy. I should hate to part with them.
There is no person talking of buying this place that I have heard of.
I have been over to Henry's this evening. They are well and talk of writing to you. We are all well. The children are in bed. They all want me to tell Pa something for them. We are trying to learn them to read this winter.
Well, Pa, take as good care of yourself as you can, and may God bless you inasmuch as you put your trust in Him.
From Your Wife,
(Of course, this letter is to Charles N. Mumford. Probably there will be a letter from him found among these which will show where he was at this time. MJM)