Autobiography of Phoebe Loretta Farr wrote:

Came across this written back in the late 1800s and would love to share it with the group. It will be posted at the cemetery site regarding the general history of the area - as long as I need to type it, I thought I would pass it on to you.

Mrs. Phoebe L. Farr has been a resident of Lorain county for the past three-quarters of a century, and has been an eyewitness to its full development.

She is a native of New York State, born in 1812 in the town of Ovid, a daughter of Henry and Eliza (Glazier) Halford, who were married in New York State.

In 1817 the family set out with a team on a journey to the then "Far West", arriving in Lorain county, Ohio, in February, 1818, and settling in what is now Carlisle township, where they followed agriculture. The father died in Carlisle township in 1859, the mother in in 1862, in her eightieth year.

This autobiography of Phoebe Loretta Farr, written about 1890, was brought to the Chronicle-Telegram news office by the author's grandson.''

This account of life in early Lorain County is shown just as Mrs. Farr wrote it, with some minor punctuation changes. Please see for the original text.

Phoebe Holford was born in the year 1812 July the 13th in the town of Ovid, York State.

  1. Introduction
  2. Arriving at Cleveland
  3. The Indians
  4. Learning to Spin
  5. School
  6. A Fire
  7. Marriage
  8. Sickness

 My father was drafted. The neighbors told him he was drafted, and not too stay and be notified, but to leav, so he left. Nowone new his whereabouts, he left befor i was born.

I never see my father till I was a year and 10 mos. old, then he came home, then he moved to Homer from ther to Virgil, from ther to Genoa, from ther to Lionstown, from ther to Phelphstown, then I was three years old.

Ther I had unkles and aunts. They took lots of pains to learn me to read, and our nearist neightbor taught school and she always wood stop for me and my brother Rheuben and we went to school.

My aunts used to cut callicos and bast them for me to sew. They learnt me to knit and peast calicos before I was five years old had knit me a pare of stokins, and I peast a bed quilt.

There was a man that came to fathers, that had been to Ohio. He praised the country up so much it give my father the Ohio fever. I can never forget how he praised up the country. Well all that, ther was nothing to do but he must and wood come to Ohio.

All that mother could say was of no use, so he bargened with a man to take his place and let him hav a span of horses harnes and a wagon and take his home providing he likt it when he rote bak, so I remember one morin early father took his pak on his back, and started for Ohio.

He had been gon only won week when mother got a letter from father. It was a solum day to mother. he wrote to mother get redy as soon as posabel and come on for the ferther he went the better he likt the plases.

I remember well how sad we felt when mother parted with all her brothers and sisters, but won sister she came with us. It was hard to leav all our aunts and unkels and all our cousins and school maits and neighbors. It was a solum day to us all.

Well it was jest as winter set in. Ther was a man by the name of Ealy drove the team till we met father. He was intending to come out to Ohio to look and see for him self how he liket it.

He put fathers wach in his poket. He told mother he wood giv it to father when they should meat, but when he got wher father was he was home sik so he went back and sed nothing a bout the wach, and he took a box of provisions.

By this time it was geting cold, and my brother Jereymiah was very sik. We drove on with the wagon till the sno got so deep that it was to deep to go with a wagon, then father stopt and maid some runers and set the whels on them so we came on.

Our wagon was covered with linen cloth that mother wove, we was very comfortabel only the babe was very sik till the first of January then it was a very cold and stormy day.

I was sik all day and the snow blew so that we could not see that horses. Father drove only six mils. He drove up to a tavern, and ask for entertanement. The landlord sed he was prety full but he wood try to acomodate us. Well we all got and went in.

Soon the hosler came in to see if he should take care of the team and it was an awfull great black Negro. My brother an I was nearly fritend to deth. I thought it was the devel. We caught hold of mother and screamd too the top of our vois.

Mother told father wee could not stay ther so we all got in to the wagon and wen a mild ferther and put up for the nite. It was the first Negro I ever saw and mother had alwase told us if wee don eny thing rong the black man wood cary us of se wee thought he had come after us shure.

Wee told her wee hadent don eny thing and she tried the very best she could too make us beiev that he was only a colerd man but it fritend us so wee never could get over it.