The letter was postmarked from Fairfield in 1894. Yes, postal stamps from the town were possible back then. Jan learned that Nancy is from the Updike clan, part of that chunk of the family that settled "back when" in the Westport area of Decatur County.
That part of the family also is found in Stow County, Kansas, having gone there in the 1850s during the days when Kansas and Nebraska were jockeying to join the nation. The slavery issue was a heated one and the Updikes were staunch abolitionists.
I hope to learn more about Nancy and the family. A lot of this history comes from my cousin Bertie (Updike) Herman.
Here's the envelope, still in pretty good shape.
It's odd how these things tend to connect in bizarre ways, and we know there were Carters who are related to the Templetons and we know there were Updikes and others who went to Kansas prior to the Civil War.Carters from north-central Indiana may have no connection to our Fairfield at all. There were Carters in Franklin County in the 1870s. Mr. Beaulieu, a stamp collector, can't explain how this letter ended up in Somerset, Mass., where he found it. The stamp, he said, dates the letter to 1881-82. The blue postmark was also unusual, he said.