This sign was found in an old Walton home and donated by Beatrice Bennett. The Wakeman Grocery Store located on Townsend Street was owned by Lorin Wakeman. Holding the Wakeman Grocery sign is the owner's grandson, Robert Wakeman, and Ronald Nagel.Recent Donations
The Walton Historical Society depends on donations of items from citizens of the community for preserving our past. This past summer, Gary North donated this original letter dated 1785 to the society for preservation. We are excited to be the keeper of such historical material.
The attitude of the first group of settlers towards their new home can be learned from this letter written by Gabriel North to this brother Benjamin North on November 14, 1785.
I am happy to embrace the opportunity to write, it being the first I’ve had since we have been in this entire wilderness. I would inform you that we are all in perfect health, for which blessing I desire to be truly thankful, and hope this may find you and yours enjoying the same. Would inform you that I have build a house, and have a good winter’s store laid in.
I have a very pleasant situation on this of Pine Hill. The Delaware River runs on the south side of my house. I think I have laid the foundation for all the happiness that this world can afford. It has been very expensive moving to this new country, and expensive and difficult getting provisions, however, I hope the worst is over. We have got four acres of wheat, half an acre of rye and one of timothy sown. I think I could write you a long story about the beauties of this place, wild and romantic. First, in great abundance, the finest trout ever was. Pigeons in countless numbers. I kept little Joe to drive them off the grain, but he could scarcely alarm them. Elk and deer are very plenty here. I saw fourteen elk in the river a few rods below my house one time. Wolves are plenty, and frequently come up to our door and around our tent at night. We had to sleep with our children between us to prevent their being carried off; but Prince, king of dogs, has killed three of them and the rest have become more shy. Prince went out alone one day on Pine Hill and brought home a beautiful fawn in his mouth that he had killed. The meat was very fine and quite welcome. We have a variety of wild apples and mandrakes, very plenty in the woods, and every kind of wild berries, etc.
You say that my friends have expected letters from me. I am sorry to disappoint them. Tell them I am perfectly satisfied with my situation, and find this country much better than I expected. We expect a number of settlers in the spring. We shall be glad to see them, although we are quite happy. Brother Robert or I will go to New York in the spring, and then will give you all the particulars of our immigration to the west. Be pleased to give my best love to all my friends. That you may be happy under any circumstances if life is the sincere wish of.
Your loving brother
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