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The letters of Silas S. Soule 1861 – 1864
Recounting His Experiences in the Colorado Territory
Transcribed from his actual letters in Denver Library Western History Dept.
Some misspellings are left as is from originals
Call: cmss rbv59 m67-1163 WH/GEN stx 6
Silas Soule letter to James B. Abbott, a friend and fellow Kansas Jayhawker. Abbott was a member of
"The Terrible Ten," or, "The Doy Gang," known for their abolitionist exploits in Kansas.
(See Silas S. Soule biography)
TO: Col. Jas. B Abbott
July 21, 1861
I can’t hear any thing reliable from you so I think the best thing I can do is to write. I hear that you are an Agent
for the Shawnees. I am very glad to hear that; it will suit you and I suppose it will pay. You may thank your stars,
Major, that you left this country when you did, for it is deader than it ever was, and has been ever since you left.
We expected a large emigration here this spring, but it has been very small, and what has come have gone to
the southern mines and from there back home, or else to California or some other foreign country. The fact is,
Major, I am getting damn sick of this God-forsaken place. There are very few lodes paying and but a few mills
running. I am still at work in the shop. I have carried it on myself for the last three months and have got so that I
am quite a smith.
Worden and some of the boys have been prospecting over the range, but have found nothing. What is the show
back there? Could I get a Lieutenant’s commission in the army, or any thing of the kind? If I could, I would go
back; if not, I shall stick to the shop until fall and then put in for Carson Valley, Waskoe, or California, or else I will
go to South America or some other outlandish place. Bill Roe and wife, and George Roe have gone to
California. They started two weeks ago. Jack Gill is in Delaware Gulsh over the range. I guess he is not doing
much. Dick Erwin started over in that direction. George Cutter has the only team on this gulsh and is doing the
best as anyone, hauling. Frank (Varnum) is working in the gold run. He has not bought a part of a claim there.
He makes grub, and not much more. Boynton worked out my claim. He took out $400. We get ¼ of it which is
fifty dollars apiece. George got his and I am waiting for mine to send back to Bill.
I have been expecting to hear from you in regard to the things you left here. I don’t know how Harsh and Stearns
have done. I bought a pair of boots of Stearns and told him I would pay for them before you came out. I haven’t
paid for them yet. I got a pair on the same terms on an order of Boynton’s at Harshes. Your things at Boynton’s
I expect she has ransacked as I have noticed any quantity of cigars laying about. She furnishes Dr. Harsh with
all he can smoke. She says the mice has eat them most all up. I got some there last week and I was up today
looking at them and took five or six. The mice have been into them, but I don’t think they have done much
Any business I can do for you I will tend to if you will let me know. I want to pay you what I owe you as soon as I
can, but I have not made much money more than grub since you left, but I will pay you all I owe before I leave the
country. I believe I owe you more than any body else. Will I pay Stearns and Boynton for them boots or pay it to
you? I wish you would let me take that snuff box at Boynton’s. I will take good care of it and return it when and
where you want it. I want it for fine cut chewing tobacco.
I am glad to hear that ISS. has the appointment of Brigadier General, but I am sorry he lost his seat in the Senate
by it. I think the Coal Creek boys ought to be whipped for giving up the cannon. If us boys go back this fall, I
think we will have it if it is in the country, or break something.
Mrs. Raff is in great spirits. She often inquires about you. Write as soon as you can. Give me all the news.
What is the chance of getting a Deputy under you. Is there nothing that I can do that will pay? Any business I
can do for you here I will tend to up to the handle. Do you ever see Bill? If you do, tell him that Stearns wants
him to let Walmarth have his revolver; I forgot to write him about it in my last. Stearns is doing well in his book
store. I don’t think of any more that would interest you. Answer soon and direct to Missourie City. Yours R.
Letters of Silas S. Soule
Letter to Col. James B. Abbott 1861
|Sand Creek also
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