Rhode Island Postal History - Railroad Post Offices (RPO)
1890-93 Providence & Pascoag Route Agent Marking
Providence & Springfield Railroad
(Scroll Down for Background History and Text of Letter)

Mrs. Bellows in Pascoag To Son - J. S. Bellows in West Springfield, Massachusetts

VIEW: Letter Page 1 
VIEW: Letter Page 2 

The cover above actually traveled on the Providence and Springfield Railroad, although the line was never completed to Springfield. This railroad was originally constructed in 1872 to 1873. and was extended to Douglas Junction, Massachusetts in 1893. It became a part of the New York, New Haven and Hartford in 1898. Passenger service to Pascoag was discontinued in 1895 and restored in 1904. It was discontinued again in 1925 and discontinued on the entire line in 1931. Freight Service from Providence to Pascoag was discontinued in 1937.

The railroad was originally chartered in 1871 as the Woonasquatuckett Railroad it was renamed Providence and Springfield in 1872.

The entire length of the line from Providence to Douglas Junction was 29 miles and from Providence to Pascoag - 221/2 miles. When first opened in August 1873, the line only extended between Pascoag and Olneyville and the railroad used a two mile stretch of Hartford, Providence and Fishkill track until 1874. The railroad opened its Providence Station in 1880. The New York and New England Railroad leased the line in 1890 and extended it to Wallum Lake and  Douglas Junction. In 1895 the New England Railroad, (owned by the New Haven Railroad) bought out the line. The New Haven was not interested in extended the line to Springfield and the line was never completed. The line between Providence and Pascoag continued to be operated as a freight line by the New Haven until 1962.
The stamp is the
2-cent, Washington, (Carmine) issue of 1890 to 1893 (Scott #220) and places the date of this letter between those years. The Cancellation is a "Negative E."
The letter is addressed to
J. S. Bellows in West Springfield, Massachusetts from his mother, Abbey Bellows in Pascoag, Rhode Island. It is a rather newsy letter and Mrs. Bellows used every available bit of space on both sides of the sheet. The letter gives news of the town, her neighbors and the family and mentions an argument between her son and husband.
John S. Bellows was born in the township of Smithfield in 1866 to William and Abbey Bellows. He is listed in the 1930 census, (at age 64) as living in Woonsocket and working as a designer in a woolen mill.

The full Text of the Letter follows Below:

                   Pascoag Sept 28
My Dear Johnnie,  
  We Have just eaten breakfast,
Now I will write to you a few lines, was glad to hear from you hope you will get what
belongs to you. Your father says if you are going to put it in a lawyers hand you ought
to give him such a per cent -- if he gets the case. If not he is not to have anything. You
will know then if he thinks it a very good case.

The men commenced on a new railroad Monday, about three hundred in three different
sections. They are going to build iron bridges over Johnnie Friskes property. "   "   " tells
your father he ought to take out an accident insurance policy for me. they keep me on the
road all the time. He says if he had had one before we went to Davisville, he would been
rich now. I sent word to him if he would take one out for me I would start at once and
divide the profits with him. John Walling was to decide yesterday if he buys Mr. Cooks 
house. I don't want any here in Pascoag.
(Probably refers to an ethnic group such as
Irish, Italian or African

Hope you will be ready to come home by Saturday. If we are going to move we ought to
before cold weather. I think your father will go if we take the right way with him. I am 
very sorry you had that talk with him, perhaps he provoked you to it. He thinks he didn't. 
It plagued him terribly. He cried when he told me about it. He said as much as he had 
always thought of you. Of course he don't lay it up against you. Now try to get along with
him. If you don't think just as he does, let it go. He is getting old and feeble. he can't 
endure but only very little, complains of being tired all the time. Has had quite a bad cold
for a week. I thought I would have to send for the doctor one night. If we are in Providence,
alone and sick some of them can come for one day at a time. 

Bentlie grant is very sick, her father and mother are in Washington. Nettie went yesterday
to stay a few days. Nellie has not been well since she went down the river. -- She has been
under Dr. Grangers care a week or more -- is gaining some I think. De Witt Emma & his
wife and Mrs. Ed Sayles have gone to
?unreadable? to stay ten days. Sophia was here last
week. I must close would like to hear from you again hope you will come Saturday
                                      Love to all, Mother
Your things ought to be seen to -- it is six weeks, if we move you don't want to unpack.
Ask Carrie if I owe her a letter.

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