This 1893 letter was written by Thomas John Rex of St. Louis, Missouri, to his brother William Rex in Randolph, Utah.
Note: I added light punctuation, capitalization, and paragraph breaks to make this letter easier to read. Original spelling retained. It was written with what appears to be an indelible pencil.
Well Bro Bill [William Rex 1844-1927] Its so long ago since I roat you a few lines that I don’t know how to start. Well I got home early to night and Mead [presumably daughter Mary Mead Rex, 1880-1942] started me at gessing hoo she got a letter from and I gave it up. Then she red it to mee and I found it was you. So I thought I would ansor it for hir and that is how I got started, and this is what it is.
Well Bill I was glad to hear from you and to hear that you ware all well and in good health, as this leaves us at present. Thank God for that. You say you have plenty of snow and cold. Well have the same, none its Yoro [zero] Wilham hear and 4 inches of snow. Well Bill the girls was glad to hear from you and say they would like to be
out thare with you and have lots of slaying with the boys and have a good time of it. Thay would like me to take them out thare again and stay out thare for good. But I cant take them out thare none for my bisness is not good enough now. Thare is nothing in it any more. I am getting pororer every year and if I don’t soon stop I will have to sell a house to liv on. I am not making any thing none my work is not stedy no more. What I make this weak I can pay it out the next, so that is how I am getting along.
The store has thare one [own] teams and I get what they cant doo. All the stors has thare oen teams so that a outsid man cant get any thing to doo except when they are bisey. Its that way all over, so you see thare is no show for any one else so I don’t know what I will doo. The girls want me to sell out and go to Kirkwood and try to make a livin thar. But I cant
see anything in it for me and I don’t want to go to work for any one else now. I have been my own bos for so long that I don’t like to have a boss now. Well Bill I am glad to hear that you are all dong well out thar and that your little town [Randolph] is improving so well and to hear that you are a granpaw the same as I am, and soon to bee a grandpa for one of Toms, for Tom [Thomas John Rex II, 1876-1963] was married last June and thar is a show for it. Well such is life in St. Louis.
I am glad to hear that Marie Pearce [Mary Mead Clucas Pearce, his half-sister] is getting along and hope shee will get all wright again. The world fair will bee in 1904. They are pushing it along fast. The beat is at Forist Bark which lies in the western party of the city, a nice place it was to spend a Sunday or evening at when the wether was hot. That is about all I know at present so I will have to class [clarify] this for the next time right.
I will have more to say and tell you about so give my love to all inquirings friends and except the same yourself. Ancor soon.
From your Big Brother T. J. Rex
Tom as got a hors shoning shop and doing pretty well now and Will [William Rex, 1874-1941] has little coal yard and he is making a living that way. He has a fine boy and he likes his grandpaw, you bet. He comes to see mee every time he can get at the gate, he trots dowe to see mee or the girls. They are well and sends thare love to all. No more this time, good night.
Tom & Will and old man Rex
Thomas John Rex died October 12, 1908 at Kirkwood, St. Louis, Missouri. His family is listed here on an earlier post.
Picture from Wikipedia. New Family Search. Letter from Helen Rex Frazier collection.