Crane Bird, Maria L. 1864
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                        Lowell3 Feb 26

Dear Charley

      My Castles in the Air have
all fell to the ground and Mother4 need
not save any Straw for me. When I wrote
awhile ago and said I wanted some braid.
I expected I could sell a lot of Bonnets and
get a good price for them. for Charles5  had
been in to Robinson’s6 and the young man
said he thought from what Charles said
of the Braid he would give two dollars
for number nine and take quite a number
the old Robinson7 has been in Boston8 and this
Winter and has just come back. Charles
went down there last night to find out
for certainty what they would do. Before
I wrote and he could not do anything
with the Old Man. he did not seem to
know anything. he did not know
anything about Braid and when he wanted
Bonnets he went to Boston and got the kinds

  1Maria L. Crane b: 6 Dec 1832, Dedham, MA d: 1867, Lowell, 
    MA; parents: Joseph Crane and Susan Boyden; married 1850: 
    Charles Bird b: Nov 1825, Walpole, MA d: 1909, Walpole, MA; 
    employed: Convers carriage maker – 183 Central; residence: 
    82 South Street.
  2Charles H. Crane b: 1 Nov 1844, Dedham, MA; parents: Joseph 
    Crane and Susan Boyden; married 1877: Lovey Anna Lewis 
     b: 1849, Alfred, ME.
  3Lowell, Massachusetts.
  4Susan Boyden b: 21 Jul 1813, MA d: 15 Aug 1884, Dedham, MA; 
    parents: Jason Boyden and Hannah Marr; married 1831: Joseph Crane.
  5Charles Bird b: Nov 1825, Walpole, MA d: 1909, Walpole, MA; 
    parents: Andrew Bird and Mary Thompson; first married 1850: Marie 
    L. Crane; second married: Harriet E. Keyes.
  6Francis W. Robinson, Jr. b: 1832, MA; employed 1860: merchant –
    millinery store. 
  7Frederick William Robinson, Sr. b: 6 Aug 1810, MA; business owner 
    1860: bonnets and millinery store – 61 Merrimack Street corner John 
    Street; residence: 16 Kirk Street. 
  8Boston, Massachusetts.

they had. he had been down yesterday and
got a lot of number nine for $1.33 cts.  I do not
see how got them so cheap for I had a letter
from Addie Boyden the other day, and they
are asking at Foxboro.9 by the wholesale $1.50
and $2.00. So I will have to sell mine
pretty low, to have them buy. because they would
have to be pressed and I should not make 
enough to pay me braid to make up
but I am coming out there in the course of
a few weeks to make up what little I have
braided, and I want Mother to ask Lusher
Baker10 when he comes. If he will let me take
a block for a week. Tell him I want to alter
a few Bonnets and want to make up a few
for some friends, and that will not be telling
a lie for Mrs. Lows11 and Mrs. Searles12 both say
they will have one, if they do not backout.
if he will not lend me one, perhaps he
will sell one, but I had  rather he would
lend one, for my profits will not be very
large and cannot afford to lat out a
great deal. The Braid does not match

  9Foxborough, Massachusetts.
  10Lusher G. Baker b: 1806, MA; business 1870: hat 
  11Mrs. Hannah Low; residence 1864: 78 South Street.
  12Mrs. Frances B. Searles b: 1805, MA; residence 1864: 
      66 Thorndike Street.

Mrs. Wilsons13 Bonnet and she has concluded
not to have it altered, and she thinks
a little of having a Bonnet from the
number 13. when she makes up her mind
I shall send word. I quess the third week
from now I shall be there. I have been
sick since I wrote to you. First a very sore
throat.  Then a bad cough and finally
it seems to settle all over me. They were
all afraid I was going to have another
Fever. but I got through with out. but
for a week I laid on the sofa most of
the time. I only did just what little
work was obliged to be done, so there
was a week lost from braiding. I should
think the folks must have wanted to go to
Boston. to start of that awfully cold windy
day. it was an awful day here the worst
one we have had this year. everything froze
up in our middle room that night, and
our fire went out in our sitting room,
and most all of my plants froze. I
thought I had rather bad luck don’t you

  13Mrs. Harriet T. Wilson; residence 1864: 86 South Street.

and to crown all, they fired the Cannon out
on the Common, Washingtons Birthday, and
it shook the house so that one of my plants
(that did not freeze) on to the floor and
broke all to pieces. But I must stop for it is
time to get Supper, and I have got the tooth
ache so I am almost crazed. I want you to
write as soon as Mother finds out, if L. Baker
will let me have a block. Write so I can get
the last of next week, and you will
greatly oblige me.

                     Yours in haste Maria

[on cover]

Answered Mar 2 1864

Mr. Charles H. Crane
West Dedham,

Feb 27


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