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Title: Jane Ellen Orr, Portaferry, to John M. Orr, [Chicago?].
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FileOrr, Jane Ellen/98
SenderOrr, Jane Ellen
Sender Genderfemale
Sender Occupationunknown
Sender ReligionProb. Protestant
OriginPortaferry, Co. Down, N.Ireland
DestinationChicago, Illinois, USA
RecipientOrr, John M.
Recipient Gendermale
SourceCopyright Retained by John McCleery, 80 Circular Road, Belfast,BT4 2GD.
ArchiveUlster American Folk Park.
Doc. No.9702154
Partial Date
Doc. TypeLTE
LogDocument added by LT, 10:02:97.
Word Count1260
TranscriptPortaferry November 27th 1847

My Dear John
On receipt of your letter of the 19th Oct we
were all most delighted to find that you were regularly
commenced business, and likely to succeed - I need scarcely
say that you have the good wishes of all your friends. We
are supposing that by the time you have received Dada's
last epistle and surely the contents of it would put you
in a good temper - that is, if at any time during the day
you had been in a bad one. We were saying a few days since
that it would be a very long time before we would know
whether you had received it or not, as formerly during the
winter months, the mail only came in once a month. however,
we saw by yesterday's paper that arrangements had been made
to despatch mails to and from America every fortnight, for
the next four months, and once a month during summer. We are
glad that such arrangements have been made for now that we
have been accustomed to hear from you every fortnight, it
would seem very long indeed did we not [sic] from you for
a whole month. You might send us a paper now and again we
would like very much to know what is going on in Chicago,
and to see is your name in it yet, it would cut a great
swell "Bentley & Orr." Is he - Mr Bentley - an American,
or one of your own countrymen? I think the Chicago [sic]
winter must have set in very soon in Chicago, as in your
last letter you mentioned that there had been snow. Mama
was wishing that you had some more warm stockings. The
weather has been cold but no snow as yet. The Warnock's
had a very long letter yesterday from Tom. I suppose he
is in New Orleans by this time as he was to leave
Cincinatti the 1st. November. he told them that he had
to clean his own boots for some time as the servants
would not do them, you never said whether you had
that work to do or not. You will scarcely be able
to read this writing, this pen I have won't write.
You will I am certain be surprised to hear that Aunt
Isabella Orr had an addition to her family about three
weeks since. I am sure Uncle Malcolm and she will be
quite proud of their little daughter - the young
mountaineer, as Uncle styles her. Uncle Robert met
with a severe accident about a week or two since, he
was returning from Belfast one evening about [supper?]
and the mare he was on threw him and cut his head and
sprained his right arm. Dada had a letter from Uncle
William yesterday, and he mentioned that he was better,
and had been able to go to the garden the day before the
letter was written. Grandmamma and all other friends
in that quarter are quite well. Mrs R. McCleery has
also got an addition to her family - a little boy -
he is uncommonly like what William Henry was, when
he was an infant - William Henry is growing very tall,
he now wears a little Office coat, of which he is very
proud. he is as full of conceit as ever he can be, and
a great mimic. he can take off people before their
face, and they never know. I believe he intends writing
you a line or two to shew you how much improved his is
in his writing penmanship, but whether he will settle to do
so is another matter. The teacher that is here at present
is a Mr. Johnston, he is a very nice looking young man,
but has a stick leg, many a times the boys say among
themselves, that if he is cross with them, they will
tumble him. I suppose they imagine it would not be
hard to do. What would you suppose to be the difference
in the time between Chicago and Portaferry? we were
thinking about 3 or four hours many a time, when we
are sitting around the fire before going to bed, we
talk of you and wonder what you are then doing. It is
now more than six months since you left us, it appears
to me more than a year. You said in your last letter
that if all goes right you think it likely you would
be able to pay us a visit in three years. Would you
remain at home then? I suppose however by that time
you would have become so much attached to the Chicago
people, that you would not like to leave them. Very
few after remaining for some years in America when
[sic] to live in Ireland, and I suppose that will
be the case with you. It is generally thought that
there will be a much distress this year as what
was last, the people are beginning to call out
already. The murders that are committed daily in the
south and west are really awful. Not a paper but is
almost filled with them. Parliament has assembled, and
some measures will be adopted to try and prevent
so much blood being shed. I think we are very
happy being in such a quiet corner. Have you had a letter
from Robert Bowden yet? He wrote to me for your address
some time ago. Since I wrote the foregoing, I have been
walking, visiting &c &c. as the day has been very beautiful.
We have had some very stormy days during the last fortnight,
a great many shipwrecks. I suppose you will see in
the papers an account of the wreck of the "Stephen
Whitney" an American packet ship, off Cape Clear, there
were ninety five lives lost, one of the mates is the
son of Mr. Mackay's of Belfast. however he was saved
I think you told me of having met the Miss Mackays in
Mr Wm. [William?] Blow's. There was a vessel wrecked at the back
shore, the crew with the exception of the Master and
Mate - got into the longboat, and were picked up
shortly after by the "Ignwald" steamer, the master was
drowned but the mate got into Kearney - George Bowden
left this, the week before last for Edinburgh where he
intends remaining for nine months. Margretta has been
in Belfast nearly all summer - she came home about a
fortnight before George but I hear she goes back to
Belfast to spend the winter. I have not heard from Mary
Shaw or Mary Blow for a long time, I think they have
quite forgotten me. Alexander McCullough was here,
or rather his Uncles - for a few days not long since -
he has grown very tall, and is greatly improved in his
appearance. Papers come very often for you from Mr.
J. Glass - I wonder does he not know that you are in
America. I have heard Catherine is going to be married,
but I don't know whether it is true or not. William
Henry has written you an epistle - it is not nearly
so well done as I had hoped it would be, indeed my own
is none of the best, but you must excuse all blunders,
as I am not in the mood for writing, having got a great
headache. I must leave the next page for Maggy to
write on. With love in which all join, I remain your
affectionate sister
Jane Ellen Orr