In this letter, Jona Victor writes about his wife's poor health, his garden, and, of course, his business. He also mentions Prohibition. Roselyn
Cleburne, Ks, January 25, 1919
Dear Brother Albert with Family, God's Peace!
I have not heard anything from you, nor have I written to you for a long time, so I thought I would do that now. The last letter I got I remember that your daughter was at home and was engaged. I think I have written a letter after that, but do not know if you received it. Now that the war is finished, perhaps the letters will be more sure to arrive.
We are at the farm, which is half leased out. We get feed for two horses, half of the milk, wood delivered and half of everything they sell.
I am well for my age, but my wife is not well. She has been in bad health for some years. She had cancer in the lower part of the backbone, so we were at a hospital. She was operated on two times. The rectum was removed, so evacuation is over the groin on the stomach. They also removed the lower part of her backbone. The wounds are still not healed.
When she came home, she did all the work in the house for eleven months, but after that she fainted and was dizzy and her nerves were bad. She can not read, but she is up most of the day. She goes to church, but I have to help her to the carriage and to the chair in church.
Hans and Lovisa's oldest daughter, Hulda, cooks and takes care of the house. She is not married. She will soon be 60 years old. It is a marvel that my wife is still alive. It is because of God's help.
Everything else is good. I do a little work every day. We have 175 hens, and also have bees and many things to repair. When spring comes, I plant the vegetable garden with cabbages, onions, beans, peas, beetroots, carrots, tomatoes and other sorts.
We had a bad grain harvest, but the wheat and the feedstuff were good. Everything is unusually expensive, cattle and swine, and also grain and wheat, but it works well for the farmers.
None of our children lives at home at the farm. They are busy with business. When it is good weather in the summer, they come with a car and visit us. Everybody here has a car, even farmhands.
Dear Brother, send us a letter so we can hear how you are. Is Anton at home, or what does he do? Ask him to write. Is sister Fia still alive? Where do Oskar and Gottfrid live? Selma Johansson, who lives near us here in America, visited Anders Peter's son in Fruhammar. Where do they live? Send regards to her from us.
I suppose that farms are expensive, when everything else is so expensive.
While I was writing this letter, the paper and money for our cattle and swine came from Kansas City, so I will tell you the price. We sold 21 bullocks, 17 cows and 74 swine. We received $7,220.50. This is not much in relation to the prices of cattle for you, but much of the beef and pork will be sent to Europe, where the price will be higher. We have 30 swine left. Last year we had 53 calves.
Now I will finish. I hope you can read the letter. Perhaps this will be my last letter. May God help us so we come through all obstacles and are happily saved home with God.
Kindest regards to all. J.V. Swenson
After I had finished the letter, I received a newspaper and saw that the whole United States will have a sobriety law next year. When that day comes, no pubs will be allowed to serve alcohol. It is a good example for other countries.