Letter written by Rebecca Brewster Lambert

 

Submitted by: Nancy Flint who holds the copyright to this letter

My father JAMES JEFFERSON BREWSTER was a native of Tazwell County Virginia born in 1822. Father's grandparents come from England the date I do not know. My maternal grandmother was ELIZABETH (BETTY) WILLIAMSON MILLARD. My maternal grandfather was ABRAHAM MILLARD. They were born in Logan County Virginia now Mingo County, West Virginia. My parents came from West Virginia to Lagrange, Ohio in 1865. There being no railroad to serve the people of West Virginia at that time, father by the help of friends and neighbors built a flat boat, with cabins to protect the family and household goods. Leaving West Virginia in September 1865 coming down the Tug, Livicy, Big and Little Sandy rivers into the Ohio river and stopping at Cattlesburg for sister Margaret to be born. After a few weeks they proceeded down the Ohio river to Hanging Rock, Ohio where they left the boat and moving the family and household goods by horse team to Lagrange, Lawrence County, Ohio. Here the big Lagrange furnace, charcoal pits and many fine farms made the location a very thrifty and comfortable place to live and they found the neighbors one of the best. WADE BARNES an ex-slave followed father to Ohio bringing the mules. Father secured the contract to have the charcoal to Ironton, Ohio where it was shipped by water. WADE returned to West Virginia for his mother "Aunt CINDY" who staid with mother for many years helping with the work and especially helping to rear us children who loved her dearly. Mother knew very little about fathers people, never saw them excepting his children by his first wife, six daughters and one son Owen. Only four of the children came to Ohio with father. Father had only one sister and one half brother. The sister married a MR. WHITE of Logan County, Virginia near the town of what is now Logan West Virginia. No doubt many of her offspring live in or near Logan now. My aunt and her husband were quite wealthy and highly respected citizens of Logan County. In the village of Lagrange, Ohio where we children were born and reared, father was well known as a fine neighbor respected for his integrity, honesty, and many kind deeds and was a strict disciplinarian in his family. He died in 1878 buried in the county cemetery at Lagrange. My mother REBECCA MILLARD BREWSTER was born in Logan County Virginia now Mingo County, West Virginia in September 1841. Her mother was ELIZABETH WILLIAMSON MILLARD - was a member of the well known, influential and wealthy family of WILLIAMSONs. The town of Williamson West Virginia was named for and built on part of the land of the Williamson family. Before the N & W railroad was built I spent many summers at grandmothers home to which she went as a bride and where her family of four were born and reared. From her I learned many interesting things about the family history and the Civil War. The N & W railroad was surveyed and staked thru grandmothers plantation and the survey ran straight through the hall of the house. Many people said it would never be built. My mother, a small child scarcely knowing what it was all about said, "yes it will be built and I shall ride on the train." So after many years sure enough it was built and mother kept her promise and rode the N & W trains many times.

Written by:
REBECCA BREWSTER LAMBERT