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This is a letter from Andrew and Martha Pollock to their nephew, Robert Forsyth. They are writing from Home, PA, on November 14, 1850. The Pollocks write that they are happy to learn of Robert's arrival in the United States. They inform Robert that they live in "an excellent neighborhood for morality and other good qualities; Presbyterians, Seceders, and Associate Reformed churches are most numerous and the prospects of the Covenanters here are encouraging..." , Their religious community is a dispersed, yet well organized congregation but lacks settled pastors. They say that they have had visiting pastors who are named Hanna, Cannon, Milligan, Dodds, and Hunter. In the second part of the letter, the Pollocks mention that there is plenty of land available for sale--thirty of forty pounds sterling will buy 100 or more acres of woodland. The Pollocks describe how one can farm shares; that for horses, feed, seed, and labor, a farmer receives a third of the grain. They write that school teachers receive $20 a month. They observe that section boats cost $5 per passenger, and they warn Robert to keep inside any boats to avoid accidents. They tell Robert to come along the canal to Blairsville and wait there until he can visit them or send word that he has arrived. They also give him directions to their home informing him that it is thirty miles from Blairsville and fifteen miles from Indiana on one of the Punxsutawney roads. The letter concludes with a postscript warning that ague and fever are common in Philadelphia but that those diseases don't occur in their area.




Andrew Pollock, Martha Pollock, Robert Forsyth, Presbyterians, Indiana County, Rural teachers, communicable diseases


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The Historical and Genealogical Society of Indiana County, PA; Graham Collection

Andrew and Martha Pollock to their nephew, Robert Forsyth, Home, PA, November 14, 1850