The birth date and maiden name of Emeline Fuhrmeister are unknown. She grew up on a farm near Ely, Iowa, in the late nineteenth century and married Peter Fuhrmeister. The Fuhrmeisters raised a family on a farm in or near Benton County. After the death of her husband, Fuhrmeister lived at the homes of her grown children in various parts of the state. While staying with them, she helped with sewing and other chores. She wrote the letters in this collection to her daughter Ella Fuhrmeister Bassett. The date of Fuhrmeister's death is unknown, but was shortly before 1912.
Biographical information was obtained from the donor, Charlotte Lehman, a granddaughter of Ella Fuhrmeister.