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Hills of Gold and Silver.
The Shepard Correspondence
by Craig Cole, Barbara Barnwell and Mary Warner


In the winter of 1859, Samuel Shepard, a Port Stanley grain merchant wrote his beloved wife Mary a letter from Bayfield, a little village on the shores of Lake Huron where Shepard was collecting grain for the year's trading.  She saved this letter, along with many others written by Shepard on his numerous business trips to Chicago, as well as letter written by their son Franl while he was away at school and letters written by Shepard's close friend Henry Yerrington.
 
These thirty four remarkable letters cover a span of thirty five years, from 1859 to 1894, and provide an extraordinary insight into the life and time of the Shepard family.

At the start of the correspondence, Yerrington, Shepard's one time business partner has just moved to what was then the Nevada territory to exploit the riches of the Comstock Lode. The attempts by Yerrington to persuade Shepard to come West and mine the hills of gold and silver is an allure to which Shepard almost succumbs. The dialogue between these two very successful business men provides riveting entertainment, but in the end Shepard decides that his gold and silver can be better mined at home.

Heritage Port, the Port Stanley historical society is proud to present these letters, uncut, unedited and exactly as written, and hopes that enough years have passed that the somewhat scathing comments by Shepard and Yerrington on some of Port Stanley's prominent families can be accepted with equanimity.

165 pages
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To read an extract from one of the letters, please click here

 

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