Billy Caulk school letter 1856
Eleven year old Billy Caulk at Island Creek Neck Primary School informs his father of his progress in orthography.
                                                   "Island Creek March 28th 1856

Dear Father

       In my last letter I informe you thatt I had just finished reading Number two and that there was a prospect of my being promoted to the writing school I now have the satisfaction of informing you that I was regularly promoted and have been engaged evry since in studying of those queer books about which I wrote you in my last leter My class has just now finished Number Third and I thought it would be a proper time for me to write to you again and tell you something of my progress and I am very certain that I can read a great deal better than I could three months I find it so much easier reading stories an lessonns which I can understand that I belive I should have done by reading the lessons in any book I could not understand as to spelling I find it very easy now to spell words of two three fore and even five syllables because we have the same words to spell so many times over that we cannot forget them this I am told is called orthography and I am very sure we can read much better for having first learned how to spell the most difficulty words which it contains

                                                   William H. Caulk"

                                                   [Caulk papers]
The numbered readers he used could have been McGuffy's Readers or something similar.