The Lamentable Death of Polly Yost, Who Died in York County, Pa. (or maybe not)

I shared a cool ephemera find earlier this week from a northern York County estate sale – and have another to show today. At the same sale, I picked up a two-sided tract.

It’s titled “The Lamentable Death of Polly Yost, Who Died in York County, Pa.” and is noted as “By Henry Balsbaugh.”

Poor Polly, it turns out, got up to some trouble. “She’d go to frolics, dance and play,” it says, but apparently never made time for God, then bemoans her decisions on her deathbed.

I would have felt worse for Polly’s eternal soul if I believed she were a real Yorker, I guess – but at the bottom of the back, I saw a note that said, “Pilgrim Tract Society, Randleman, N.C. Tracts free, as the Lord permits. Send postage for over 100 samples of tracts. Printed in USA.”

That certainly made me re-think the legitimacy of Polly as a real person! It turns out that the Pilgrim Tract Society is still in business, so I’ve reached out to them for more on the history of this tract series, and I’ll definitely let you know what I find!

In the meantime, please enjoy – or at least ponder – the story of “Polly Yost!”

About Joan

My name is Joan and I'm a lifelong Yorker. Throughout high school and college, I swore I was getting out of here as soon as possible. Now, a few years later, I can't think of anywhere I'd rather be. I love my town, and I hear every day from readers who love their towns, too. So please, connect with me and let's share what makes life in York County great. I'm here to help you enjoy this place as much as I do!
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