Every family has a story. Gen Journey is dedicated to keeping family stories alive using family tree and genealogical research techniques with collections of ephemera purchased via auctions, garage sales, and even found in the garbage.
Aunt Sarah apologizes to Sarah Cummings for not reading her last letter closely enough. She failed to answer some of the questions her niece had regarding Sarah Cummings's mother.
Sarah Cram tells her niece that she will answer one of her questions. Sarah Cummings's mother, Mary Ann Holden had a son (this would be a brother to Sarah Cummings) that was stillborn. She continues her story, "I must tell you the event that brought it [the stillbirth] about. Your mother went up to Groton to visit our mother [Bridget Atwell Holden], when Mary Ann [Sarah Cumings's older sister] was about two years old. While returning from there in a stage coach (there was no railroad then) as they were crossing what was called the Sanbornton Bridge [New Hampshire?] it broke through and they narrowly escaped being precipitated into the river. I cannot remember the particulars. I was sick at the time. Charlie was about a week old when she arrived at our house. I remember how she related the circumstance to me. Her bandbox was thrown from the top of the stage into the river so she took out her clothing and dried it at our house. The first I heard from her after she went home, she had lost a little boy."
Looking at the Holden Genealogy, Sarah Cram's son Charlie was born 27 Jun 1839. So if Aunt Sarah's memory is correct, I would lay odds that Mary Ann was visiting her mother around July 4th, 1839. I also was curious about Sarah Cummings's sister Mary Ann. According to the Holden Genealogy, she married Charles Herbert in 1860.
1850 Federal Census for Salem, Massachusetts
1880 Federal Census - Rumney, New Hampshire
The first census image right, is for Mary Ann Arrington and her widower father, James W. Arrington. He is living with a women who most likely is his mother, Catherine Arrington. The second census image is for 1880. It lists Mary Ann Herbert and her husband, Charles. The household next to her is likely her son. Her uncle, Milton Holden is living three households away, with his daughter and son-in-law.