To Mary Ann Woodward (Sealy) in Rockford, Illinois
from her mother Louisa Sealy (Champion) November 18, 1863 in Winthrop, Maine

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To Mary Ann Woodward (Sealy) in Rockford, Illinois
from her mother Louisa Sealy (Champion) November 18, 1863 in Winthrop, Maine


Mary Ann “Mate” Sealy was born in Castle Cary, Somersetshire, England, on January 29, 1834 to Richard Sealy (born c. 1804 in South Welton, England) and Maria Louisa Champion Sealy (born c. 1803 in Wells, England). His family (including 2 brothers & 1 sister) moved to Rochester, New York around 1843. They later moved to Geneva, NY and final settled in Rockford, IL in 1855. She married Amos Walter Woodward on September 5, 1861 in Winnebago County. He went on to found Woodward Governor. She died in Rockford October 17, 1921.


Louisa Champion Sealy


November 18, 1863


Midway Village Museum




Nov 18th 63

My Daughter Mary

Accept my thanks for for [sic] your kind letter it was very pleasing after so long time to hear from you and that darling little boy I really consideably [sic] expected you was [sic] coming to see us in Sept. as we did not hear from you I flattered myself that you was [sic] coming they laughed at me when I told them I was expecting you but I kept on expecting you till father said it was too late in the season

I have thought much of you since I receid [sic] your letter I do hope you are releived [sic] of your anxiety about your poor brother before this and it is better with him then [sic] your fears, how many such cases there are who tell the sorrow and suffering of this dreadful war I have often thought of your brothers when I have heard of the battles that I supposed they would be in. it troubles me to se [sic] the list of so many of our men prisoners in Richmond suffering as reports say they do I wonder if Walter sees the name of Neal Don among them and knows he is from Portland Maine he has been a very noted man in the temperence [sic] cause
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it [sic] has been reported that the Rebels say he may try his water now with bread and see how he likes it. I presume Walter has heard him on temperanc[sic] he has been in Winthrop, he is Brig General, it will be a loss to loose such a man as he has been but not more so then [sic] others. I presume they think they have a prize.
I was blessed to hear you little boy is geting [sic] long[sic] so finely, should like to see his picture if I cannot see him and I should like to see his mothers quite as well perhaps his father is so changed in this long time I should scarcely know him, I intend to send mine to you when we have a good Artist here, we have one but he is not called good. Could you not stir up Walter to write oftener [sic] tell him he need not be so pleased with his little son that he must forget how to write to the home of his birth, how will he do when he has three or four more just as good, he will not write at all then according as he now writes, but we will hope better of him. I should like to have you see your sister Priscilla with her little family I went down to see her when her babe was week old she was geting [sic] long[sic] finely she has writen [sic] since was doing well but she will have quite a care on her for the present a care that she has no wish to entrust with others when she can avoid it, by that means she is mostly at home with little ones. Franklin and Henry’s family are both well I write to you as tho I were acquainted with you hope you will excuse me and write me again soon Prudentia would have writen [sic] but she is preparing the [child] to take part in a Levee for the benefit of the Sabbath [school] library, kiss Elmer for his grandma W and accept some love yourself
from your Mother Woodward

Original Format



Louisa Champion Sealy, “To Mary Ann Woodward (Sealy) in Rockford, Illinois
from her mother Louisa Sealy (Champion) November 18, 1863 in Winthrop, Maine,” Midway Village Museum - Digital Collections, accessed December 3, 2022,

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