(transcribed as written)
26 April 1850
Letter to Isaac M. Key from his cousin W. C. Allred
State of Missouri, Green County, Pleasant Prairie P. O.
April 26, 1850
I take the present oppertunity of writing you a few lines to let you know that I am yet in the land of the living. We are all well and hope this will find your and the friends well and doing well. There is nothing new going on in our country that is worth relating. The California Gold fever is raging in our part very much. Many of our Missouri boys have fallen victim to the fatal contagion and have gone the way of the earth which is a common acceptatance for a trip to the mines. We have some very flattering accounts from there and some quite the reverse as for myself I am clear of the complaint. Some of the boys has got back to Independence that went out last Spring. It is said they have made handsome fortunes. The emigration from this state this spring will be much greater than it was last. Still I am not going. Times is looking up in this part almost everything bears a good price. Horses is worth from $30 to $60. Work cattle from $30 to $50. Cows from $80 to $10. Mules from $60 to $100. Sheep $81.00. Bacon $3 per cut. Corn 5 cts per bu. Wheat 40 cts per bu, wheat crops looks promising. Fruit bids fare to do well this season. This is the backwardest Spring I have ever seen since we have been here.
The grass is just comeing up so that cattle can live with out feed very few have plowed any for corn yet. In your letter here before you requested to know the chance for a school in this country, well if you will come out this summer or fall I think you can get as good a school here as you would want. I am anxious for you to come for I tell you that school teachers is scarce in this part perticularly good ones. There is a good opening for a school in our settlement now. We read a letter from Illinois a few days ago. They was all well. Uncle Thomas Allred was well and his family. Tell Grand Father and Grand Mother Allred that we have not forgot them. We got a letter from them last fall and was glad to hear that they was still alive. Tell them to write to us and let us know whether any of the other boys is going to attend to them. I would like to see them very much. Polly Ann sends her love to you all. Health is very good in this part of the country. You will think so when I tell you that I weigh 180 lbs and was not very fat at that. If you will come here you will find girls that will keep you awake when you go sparking.
Write to me as soon as you can and give us the news of the country. I am with much respect your Cousin
W. C. Allred