Hello good Stroup family members!
I am the person who made purchase of the recently discussed Peter Stoup family Bible that was sold on eBay. My interest in buying the bible was- and is- not genealogical, but, of course, I always appreciate the value of the information that might be found within something like a family Bible, and this book, in particular, has some interesting and vital information to be culled.
First of all, let me begin by telling you that if anyone has used any of the information that was posted within the auction listings, either time the Bible came up for sale, please be careful in depending upon it, as I have noticed some discrepancy in what I am finding and what was stated there. Several dates have had their numbers transposed. Because of this, if anyone would like to make arrangements to have copies made of the actual artifacts in question, email me and I am certain we can work something out to your advantage. (Please know that my reasons for writing has nothing to do with personal self-interest. If I would ask for any money, either for hard copies or postage, it would simply be for actual costs incurred.)
For some odd reason, neither eBay listing ever noted that on the back of one of the more desirable pieces of ephemera, a nice receipt of purchase with tax stamp attached (dated Sept. 09, 1870), someone took the time and spent great effort to write out, in pencil, somewhere around 50+ vital statistics, including names, DOBs & associated DODs. This record is EXTREMELY difficult to read, although, with a working knowledge of the names one would expect to find, plus a very strong magnifying lens (::smile::), I am certain most, if not all, of this record can be transcribed. I have tried, diligently, to make copies, with camera, scanner and photocopy machine, but the writing is simply too light to be readily captured. The earliest date mentioned is for a "Jacob Bowman, born Jan. 25, 1796," while the latest date is for "???atha (Tabatha?) Stroup died in the 86 year, six month and 23 days." If you have any idea as to how I might make copies for your use, let me know, as I'm willing to give anything a try. And once I have a good idea of what the actual receipt is worth, simply as historical ephemera, I would be more than willing to discuss its sale to anyone who might wish to have this information back safely within family hands.
As mentioned in both auction listings, the Bible is in very bad condition. I have discussed this with several museum curators and all agree that the best way to handle the artwork, artifacts, and historically interesting ephemera is to remove them from the book (most were already pulled from the body of the book long before it came into my hands). To be completely honest, while I am quite satisfied with my purchase, the damage is worse than either auction stated. Now that I actually have it in hand, I can see where, in the first listing, someone used judicious placement of newspaper clippings in one photograph to disguise some of the worst problems. The central part of the Bible is completely separated from the cover boards, and if someone really wanted it, along with the newspaper clippings and any other ephemera I cannot specifically use, we could certainly discuss this possibility. As I said, I am not looking to make money off of anything to do with the genealogical aspects of this Bible, only recover actual costs where possible.
To be completely honest, the odd watercolor that was sewn into the back of the Bible is much more important than either of its previous owners seemed to believe. Except for the church dues cards, signed by known figures in both the Fugitive's Aid Society and Freedman's Aid Society, not to mention the silhouettes (I've been a collector for years), it really is the only reason I bought the Bible. I'd have paid twice what I did, if not more, for the chance to own the darn little thing. Once I have received the evaluations back from the various curators I've queried, I will make as much of it available to you as is humanly possible. If you want, send me an email and let me know what your desires are as concerns the Bible, and I will see what I can do to adequately satisfy them for you.
Take good care,
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