I'm not researching Jacob Thiess (or Theiss??), but I'm posting here for two reasons. First, I thought that his descendents might enjoy reading a letter he wrote to my great, great grandfather, John Richardson Davidson of Maine. Second, I'm taking a long shot that perhaps you might happen to have a letter written by my gg grandfather.
The letter is poorly written but kind of fun. Jacob wrote to "Dear frient John Daveston." Times were tough, as "The mills only run half thim and the living is party hieght [pretty hard]... I cannot mak a living for my famely say noting of paying for a new haus..."
John R. Davidson was known in the family as something of a dreamer, and apparently he and Jacob used something he called a "rood" to search for buried treasure. Jacob wrote, "Dear frient I am riting this letter in regart of the rood I have ton my best to trie to leged golt or sillver haer or mony put is of no us haer if I wult ever have te luk of finting anyting you wolt have a gud shaer ofet put luk us again me...The rood is better now then ever it was before the glass tup that holds the cotains got los and I repleset with a still on it cost me 4 Dolars to gettet filled anew the rood is mor powerful now than ever befor."
The letter begins: Austin PA Geplemer Nov[??] 4 1878 [could be 1898]
It is signed: Jacob Thiess Austin Potter County Pa Box 118
If you're a relative of Jacob's and would like a transcript of the letter, please e-mail me.And of course, if you have any documentation of John R. Davidson, I would love to hear about it. I know it's a long shot, but you never know...