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December 13, 1864: Enfield Center, New York

December 13, 2014

…arriving at Ithaca [this] morning at eight o’clock.

I footed it home and arrived at 11 A.M. [today].

All looks familiar—some few changes, but Providence has been kind. We are all together again, all in good health. It seems as if I had not been away as we gather about the fire of a cold, wintry evening. All of us look a little older in the face, but hearts and affections are as young as when I left to ramble so far from home. We have snow and cold weather, a winter’s landscape and a winter fireside, where we mutually have many things to tell.

And here let my long letters cease. It is by no means probable that I shall write so long a series again, or at least under such exciting circumstance or amid such interesting scenery. I trust you have had as much pleasure in reading as I have in writing them.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. December 13, 2014 9:19 am

    Tom – I’m sad to end this wonderful journey with your pictures and Brewer’s letters. They have given me hours of enjoyment and spurred me to go down rabbit holes in search of more information about a person, the place or process, like gold and silver mining. I’ve put several places in CA on my “to go to” Bucket List after see your pictures. Many thanks, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    • William H. Brewer permalink*
      December 13, 2014 10:02 am

      Thank you so much! I’m glad you’ve enjoyed it. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  2. Kathleen permalink
    December 13, 2014 11:08 am

    Very sad also. Thanks, Tom, for this blog. Something I looked forward to every day. As marshastanton said above, I too now have places I want to visit I never considered before. And some places I was visiting, coincidentally, the same time [sic] as Brewer was, such as Lassen. Made it that much more interesting and special.

  3. plefton permalink
    December 13, 2014 1:05 pm

    If this is really the end, I’ll say that it’s been a great pleasure following Brewer for the last several years. I know California well, but reading his impressions of places 150 years ago has given me a new perspective. Thank you so much for this. I wish there could be more.

  4. John Livingston permalink
    December 14, 2014 9:09 am

    Thanks so much Tom for bringing this adventure to us. I will remember it when I am up in the Sierras or in SF.

  5. ploobr permalink
    December 14, 2014 4:18 pm

    Thank you so much for this labor of love. It is fitting that it ends beside a cozy fire with friends and family near. Such a full circle moment.

    Enjoy your well deserved rest, Tom, and when you are ready to do this again, may I request James Boswell’s “Tour of the Hebrides”? (Just planting a seed….)

    Happy Holidays!

  6. joel hanes permalink
    December 18, 2014 10:19 pm

    All my life’s a circle.

    So now I get to start at the beginning and read an entry a day again
    Now, when I know where he’s going to go, and have seen Tom’s photos
    Now I get to read it again, and pay attention

    Thanks for years of thought and connections.

  7. Kathie Brock permalink
    January 15, 2015 1:39 pm

    Thanks so much, Tom. I enjoyed the trip!

  8. August 4, 2015 12:22 pm

    Just found this linked on HighSierraTopix about a week ago. Couldn’t stop reading it. These men were amazing in their willingness to do such an enormous thing, under the worst of conditions, and without being sure they would get paid.

    BTW, did Brewer ever get paid?

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