Casas Grande, Chihuahua, Mexico
[Casas Grandes, Chihuahua, Mexico – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casas_Grandes,_Chihuahua ]
February 11th 1887 [Friday 1887-02-11]
Dear Eddie [Edward Hunter Snow, b. 1865]
Your favour [letter] of 21st last [Friday 1887-01-21] reached me by last mail and was perused with much satisfaction as are all your letters. The same mail brought me eight other letters, among which were one each from Willie [William Spencer Snow, b. 1867], Erastus B. [Erastus Beman Snow, b. 1853] and Frank [Franklin Richards Snow, b. 1854] of St George [S. George, Washington, Utah] and one from David H. Morris, 31 Latimore Road, Noting Hill, London West England. The others seemed to require prompt attention so David’s and yours are last in my answers.
My eyesight has been failing me all summer and I have not been able to get suitable glasses, and for some months was obliged to abandon reading and writing but lately since cool weather they are a little better and my scribes Teasdale [Elder George Teasdale], Thatcher [Elder Moses Thatcher] and others have left Elisabeth [Elizabeth Rebecca Ashby Snow, b. 1831] to read for me and I do most of my writing, but often fail to follow lines and probably omit words and make mistakes. My other infirmity urinary difficulties are still troubling me more or less all the time, but I think less than for some years past, and I attribute it to change of climate, warm weather and this soft beautiful water.
I think you already know that Arthur [Arthur Eugene Snow, b. 1870] went home last fall with Sam Jarvis. Martie [Martha Ellen Snow, b. 1865] left her school and returned home in January [1887-01] to keep house while Josephine [Josephine Snow, b. 1859] teaches school in Pine Valley [Pine Valley, Washington, Utah]. Georgiana [Georgiana Snow Thatcher, b. 1862] also left us at Deming N.M. [Deming, Luna, New Mexico – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deming,_New_Mexico ] for Provo [Provo, Utah, Utah] and home by rail Jan. 19th [Wednesday 1887-01-19] . We all hitched up our teams and went out to Deming [Deming, New Mexico] with her, and there Bros. H. Pratt [Helaman Pratt], F. Spencer and others met their families just from Utah, among whom were also Caroline Romney [Caroline Lambourne Romney, b. 1846] and her children. We are all back here at our post again except Bro. Thatcher [Elder Moses Thatcher] who went East after a steam saw mill and shingle and lathe machine and grist mill for our colony. I expect soon to start again as far north as --- and Diaz our new settlement, to meet the machinery and get it thru the Custom House. Here I stopped for dinner and our carrier arrived from ---- with another mail in which was one of --- from Martie [Martha Ellen Snow, b. 1865] who speaks of all our folks as in usual health. Says Georgiana [Georgiana Snow Thatcher, b. 1862] was then at Provo [Provo, Utah, Utah], but coming home by stage in a few days. Another Marshall scare there and not yet over. I suppose you see the Salt Lake papers and are posted in Utah affairs.
I expect Bro. H. Eyring [Henry Eyring] and Erastus B. [Erastus Beman Snow, b. 1853] will have a mission to Mexico this spring. My debt at St George [St. George, Washington, Utah] tithing office has accumulated so much of late that I have been obliged to curtail my folks, and have limited your mother [Julia Josephine Spencer Snow, b. 1837] to $20.00 per month at that office and five dollars cash besides their gardens and dividends on $500.00 in St George C.M.I. [St. George Cooperative Merchantile Institution] and $1000.00 in Rio Virgin Manuf. Co. [Rio Virgin Manufacturing Company] and her feed for cows and pigs and bread stuffs from mill. The latter I have turned over to St George [St. George, Washington, Utah] office to run and draw its earnings to be applied to my debt.
Frank [Franklin Richards Snow, b. 1854] has concluded to dismiss Paxman and let Willie [William Spencer Snow, b. 1867] run the mill. Arthur [Arthur Eugene Snow, b. 1870] and Joseph [Joseph Smith Snow, b. 1873] and his sister are in school. I am pleased with your questions because they exhibit an inquiring mind that is storing up knowledge. I understand that the half tribe of Mannassa shared the fate of the other tribes of Isreal, tho [though] many of them became identified with the kingdom of Judah, (and shared its fate). As to your other question about Free masonary [Free Masonry] — there can be no doubt that it originated in the Priesthood as far back as there are [is] any history of it, and it was especially set in order in the Temple of Solomon and was previously had among the ancient Prophets and Patriarchs back to Adam and it was continued down also among faithful Christians until it became obscured and partly lost and corrupted in the general apostasy of the Dark Ages; which is now restored with the fullness of the Gospel and all the lost keys of the Priesthood. By this you can understand that Modern Masonry is like Modern Christianity adulterated and more or less changed from the ancient keys of Priesthood. Particulars could not be explained to you with out you had a knowledge of Modern Masonry. This is what Bro. Reynolds [George Reynolds] hinted at in his pamphlet “Are We of Isreal.” Satan has in divers ages introduced among his followers a wicked imitation of the Priesthood and used its secret signs and tokens for corrupting and destroying mankind, such as --- Mormon speaks of among the ancient Jaredites and at time --- robbers etc.
We are progressing well with our improvements in Mexico. Ever praying for your health and success in your ministry, I am your effectionate [affectionate] Father E. Snow [Erastus Snow, b. 1818]