ziba hurd's 1849 letter
A note written to Matilda Belden Smith in 1849 by her grandfather Ziba Hurd
Your grandfather descended paternally from the English and maternally from Scotch descent. His native place was the town of Tinmouth in the county of Rutland and State of Vermont, at which place he settled and lived until he was 31 years of age. In that year 1816 he emigrated with his family to the State of New York, and settled in the wilderness in the then town of Perry in the county of Genesee (now the town of Castile in the county of Wyoming).
He with his family had to undergo all the perils and privations incident to the settling of a new country. Notwithstanding the hardships, trials and perils of settling a new country, there seems to be something pleasant to stimulate the mind and body to action, and every movement seems to unfold something new. The very idea that the village of Castile where he now lives was 33 years ago all a wilderness, and that he with others were instrumental in making the village what it now is, is sufficient to awake the emotions of pride in the breast of a weak mortal.
But I forbear. The scene will soon change and I shall be no more. It becomes us to so live before God that when we are called hence we may inherit a building, not made with hands, eternally in the Heavens.
Castile April 18th, 1849