Box 3954 New York [New York City, New York]
February 27th 1861 [Wednesday 1861-02-27]
My Dear Elisabeth [Elizabeth],
I returned here last evening from Toms River, New Jersey and found your letter of Jan. 29th mailed Feb 1st and one from Julia of 26th Jan. mailed 25th [?]. Having recently written to Julia. I must defer replying to her last till next mail or I have but an hour before mail closes in which I wish to deposit this.
I had waited long for yours and wondered why you were so slow in writing and you may believe I felt glad to find so many little items of family news and interesting bits in it when it came. It almost seemed as though I was at home enjoying with you the sweet society of the little ones and joining in the festivities at our New Ward Assembly Room [?], and hearing the merry voices and table chit chat of Martha and the other of your sisters and brothers and Bryant's dry jokes around your supper table. I am certain that I could have enjoyed better if I had been present, but must content myself with our account of it until I come home again, and then!
Well no telling how many good times are yet ahead of us. I am making up my mind lately to live and enjoy a heap of them yet, and as for the Hoops [?] if you have not special use for them this Winter I think I shall provide them hour [?] and send them home for future use and trust to inflating them when I come.
I mail with this 2 numbers of the Herald for you and 3 princes [pieces] for Frank, Florence and Susan. Elisabeth [Elizabeth] will have to mail for her spelling hook until Summer I think or it cost more to send by mail. However if she has more for use at school I will mail her one when I hear from you again about it. I was glad to hear that Artimesia was able to be visiting with Franklin and Jane and Sister Proth [?] and you have all a cheerful spirit and enjoying the bright hopes of Saints. Health, Health gives vivacity to the spirits of us all. And enables us to enjoy the present while faith inspires us with hope for the future. The very changeable weather of the present Winter and a sucception [susception] of colds for [have ?] effected [affected] my general health so as to impair my usefulness and pleasure, but I am improved by my trip in New Jersey or you will see by my style of writing.
Tell Rachel Grant that I visited her cousins Ned Ivins and wife and Margaret McCain (Theodores mother) she remember Artimesia well when she was there with me in 1841 feeding Sarah out of the bottle. I held 5 meetings at Tom Biner. 3 persons were baptized and the saints felt much blest [blessed] with my visit. Most of them will go to Utah next summer if they can sell their property. We are making every effort to get as many of the saints as probable up to Florence from all the Eastern branches to meet the teams for Utah in June  next, but there are many saints here now dependent on charity for their daily bread not to mention emigration. We try to hope however for a renewal of business so they can get work. Congress seems likely to adjourn without the Ultra Republicans being able to crowd through their war measures and if so the southern states will have more time to consolidate and prepare for more effectual resistance and we shall have more time to gather the saints out of the states.
Mr. Lincoln is to be inaugurated next Monday. Hopes are entertained that he can do something to save the Union, but it is too late.
You will get the news in the “Herald”. I sent Father Coupe an alliance with Artimesia last letter- I hope you will be able to supply his wants and make him comfortable. My kind regards to him. Bro. White Little must feel deeply to the loss of their son Charles. Present them my deep sympathy and condolences. I trust my family will be spared such bereavement in my absence.
My love to all and every good wish that any of you can think off. I think of visiting the East in a few days.
My time is up so good by my dear wife and children until I have time to say more- God bless you all.
Erastus Snow [Elder Erastus Snow 1818-1882]