The Leaming and Yates Families
(Migration from Cape May County to Clermont County, Ohio)

The following letter was printed in Volume II ,Number 2
 of the Cape May County Magazine of History and Genealogy,
 June, 1940


Contributed by H. C. Campion, Jr. (in June 1940)

Jonathan Leaming
Cape May State of New Jersey

                                                                                    Clermont County, State of Ohio

Dear Brother & Sister

After our best Respects to You and Yours, we take this opportunity to Let You know that we are all well At present & have enjoyed our health (Since I wrote to Mr. Jorman in the Summer) Much Better than Ever we Did at Cape May; Phebe is Very harty Eliza is Very fat and hearty More So than Ever She was at the Cape; and hope thes May find you in the Same State of health; we are settled in an exceding healthy part of the Country on a high elevated Spot about one Mile above the Little Miamy. The Land is Amasing Rich though Somewhat broken but Goodness Abundance; there is on the place I Bought a good Double hewed Loghouse with 2 fireplaces that is pretty comfortable, we have plenty of Every Necessary of Life, I have got In about 7 Acres of wheat this fall. I follow Shoemaking & can git A Bushel of wheat for Making a pair of Shoes & 3 Bushels when I find Leather; there is Plenty of Milk, Stores of Imported goods of all kinds; Mechanicks are Very Numerous; Nails; Glass; tin & Earthen & Stone ware is manufactured Nearly as cheap as in Philadelphia; the Best flax, Cotton & wool I ever Saw and Ready Sale for Every Article that we Dont want to consume; we are perfectly Satisfied in the Exchange we have Made and would Not Come back to the Cape to Live if we Might have all we Left given to us & our Expenses back it would be no temtation to us to Return to Live there, though we would be exceeding happy to See You & many of our friends we Left behind; Though it is Happiness that we Can Converse by Letter (Although we are at a Great Distance and between us are hugh Mountains that are Dreadful to behold though they are passable and we have bee Brought Safely through by the Blessing of heaven) though I have not Received Any Letter from the Cape Since we Left You. I Should be glad to See you in this Country & we do think you Might Make A great Addition to your Extate in After Years. The Country is populating Very fast there is many Men of Great Estates that are Moving to this Country. They have only to Lay out money in Lands and Let it Lie without any Improvement in A few years would See for Double what it would Now Cost; there is a man that has settled joining to me that Brought out with him 19000 Dollars another where Jonathan is at work that Brought out 17000 Dollars they are purchasing Mill Seats that No Doubt will be in a Short time of Great profit, that is my Opinion that it the Best Country to get an Estate in of Any part of the Known world.

     Therefore, If Any person wishes to Do well for their posterity I would advise them to Come to this Country; the Greatest Disadvantage we are under is that We have our Living to buy till we Can have time to Raise it; but is Plenty Cheap & good; Religion in this Country is in good Condition; our Principal Men; Judges' Justices & Representatives are Men of Strict Piety; A man that professes No Religion is in no Great Esteem; our Laws are Mearly the Same as in Jersey only Respection Slaves. Any man Bringing a Slave into the State cannot hold them Longer than one year. Please to give our Respects to all our friends; Ruth Crawford; William Yates, George Springer; Amy Springer & all the REst of enquiring friends.

    So no more at Present only to Remain Your Brother and Sister till Death; and that we Mall all Be Brought to A State of happiness when time shall be No more
     Is the Prayer of us

                                                                                           Thomas Yates
                                                                                            Phebe Yates

    NB I have wrote to Mr. Holmes to pay Some Attention to Collecting the Money that Is now Due; You will please to try to remind him of it; as am About Building & Shall want the Money Next Summer.

       The above letter was addressed to Jonathan Leaming, Jr., born June 21, 1770, died March 18, 1809, buried in the Baptist Churchyard, Cape May Court House, with a tomb. His wife was Elizabeth Yates, a sister of the above correspondent. 
      Johnathan Leaming above was a grandson of the famous diarist, Aaron Leaming, Jr.

For more information about Migration patterns see the New Jersey Migrations

WritnNJs notes:

The letter sounds a little like a salesmen trying to sell land.  I grew up along the "Little Miami" and if what you wanted to do was farm, it was a far better location then Cape May County. (Although, I love Cape May County, but not for it's soil.) 

I would guess that the Yates family settled around Milford Ohio. Any one have any knowledge?

The letter is not dated, but based on the lifetime of Jonathan, we can guess it is between 1790 & 1810.

Now, who is the famous diarist, Aaron Leaming, Jr?

Always more questions, with every piece of information. 

Click here to read a bio of Rev. John Collins
Another migrant from South Jersey to Clermont County, Ohio.