Brother writes brother to borrow money for investing

Recipient

Date Written

Jan. 3, 1852

The following was written 167 years, 10 months, 16 days ago.
It was a Saturday.

Oquawka,
January 3, 1852

Dear Brother,

I now embrace the opportunity of writing to you; not as usual for I have not received a reply to my last. I have a strong notion of going to California in the spring and have been disappointed some what in my arrangements and I know I cannot go in the spring as I wish to go: That is, without being dependant on strangers: Therefore, I have concluded to write to you to see if you will assist me some in the enterprise. The news is pretty flattering, especially from those just returned from California. Both as regards health and the opportunities of gain. There are a great many families going from this section of the country in the spring. They will have as early as the first or middle of Apr. So if you are willing to loan me the sum of (say from) $200 to $600. I could go with $200, but with a larger amount I would have a fairer prospect of gain.

Joseph McClanahan when he went borrowed means of conveyance with agreement to pay on his return half of all he had made. I am willing to do likewise. But if you see proper to assist me some, just subjoin the conditions with the amount. I will just mention that a check on the Bank at Burlington, Iowa or at St Louis Missouri will be convenient enough. I wish if you please to reply just as soon as you receive this for I have little time to fix for my anticipated trip. I perhaps could borrow means of conveyance in this country, but I would much rather apply to you than any one else. The enterprise is some hazardous, but all persons who have gone from this part of the country and returned have been well paid for their trip and are pretty nearly all gone and are going back. They all speak highly of the climate and health of the country. I will write other particulars when I receive yours in reply to my last which I attend the arrival of each mail to receive.

All the friends as far as I know are well at present except brother Thomas. He is pretty low at present, but I think is mending slowly. His complaint is a bad cold which is seated on the lungs. I enjoy good health. In hope that this will find you well as I am at present. I remain your Obe’d servant,

Robert Reynolds

PS We have had a pretty cold winter, very little snow. The thermometer has been 18 (degrees) below zero. Pork is selling at $4,25 a hundred. Business generally prosperous. Some excitement on the anticipated Rail Road from ____ to Oquawka or elsewhere not determined. If not disappointed I will have to be at H. Joseph’s on the first of May to be ready to go with the Oregon Company. Give me all the intelligence with your notions relative to enterprise. Perhaps you would like to go too. Forgive errors for I have written it in much haste and on my nee at the fire. Yours

R. R.

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