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Title: William Parke, Petersburg, Va. to his Wife, [Ireland?].
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FileParke, William/30
SenderParke, William
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationshop owner
Sender Religionunknown
OriginPetersburg, Virginia, USA
RecipientParke, Mary
Recipient Genderfemale
SourceT 1648/15: Copied by Permission of Miss M. Parke, 9 Bridge Street, Banbridge, Co. Down.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, Northern Ireland.
Doc. No.8810081
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by JM 27:09:1993.
Word Count1366
TranscriptPetersburg Va. [Virginia?]
September 21st 1868

My Own dear Wife, I am now in your
debt for two long newsy letters I got yours
of the 4th Sept. yesterday 21st it came by Derry
so I must try to get one answered at least, and now
for your questions, you wish to know the
state of my finances, I have just made
a rough calculation of what I own &
what the books show against me & the gross
amt [amount?] is 1,020$ to balance this I have to
my credit on the books $10 and sales of
500 & some lbs feathers which when rendered
will I expect amount to over 260$ which
leaves me 50$ besides all of this years
salary untouched (100$ pr month) so
you see dear we are not quite so poor
as you feared and I hope to be able
to make enough by speculating in a
small way to pay expenses for the
balance of the year, I have seen
Mrs Many & Marks sometimes but not to
speak to them. Deny has been home
a long time, They do not know whether
they will remain in the house or not,
I did not make anything of the [gesden?]
except some 50c I sold the stove at
auction for 5$ expect to get my next
in New York when I go to meet you
Robert Hill spends a good portion of
his time on his farm in the country
he has no other employment that I
know of. I did not see the "Big Ship"
Horner has been employed for some Months
he paid all his debts I believe, and if not
keeping house must expect to do it, he
told Mrs McClevy & me of a Wardrobe
he had bought at 45$ he offered as
much for 27$ for a bureau to match
at an auction sale a day or 2 since
you recollect the new furniture store
above us a few doors, well they sold
out, I bought 16 chairs & 2 Mirrors for
17.25 and missed getting a nice bureau
cheap by having to attend to things
at the store Hervey being in the
country, what I did get are worth over 25$
now love I think I have answered all
your questions in your letter of August 24

except one about Tillys propositions. You
must if possible bring her over untill [until?]
she explains all about them and gives
me her reasons & then as Hervey says
"I will think of them" I think dearest
about the third week in October would
be as late as it would be prudent to
put off your return unless for good
company and as I have mentioned before
one of the Cork Thursday Steamers is
about the best line you can select
Wm [William?] Inman, Tower Buildings, Liverpool
agent, who will furnish you plans
of the vessels on application by letter
if you could not select a good room
from them Mr Hopps I dare say would
do it for you, Liverpool is the best place
to engage a room or berth as it is head
quarters and you can get whatever one
you choose kept for you till you meet
the vessel at Cork, it is uncertain at the
other offices as they do not know what ones
are engaged in L'Pool [Liverpool?]
If you should think of trying the Galway
line again I dare say they are improved
since we came over, there are some fine
new vessels on the line, but I think
there will be only one to sail next
month for New York & that will be
the 20th. There is another cheap
line of Steamers from Liverpool
that I know very little about, it
is the Cunard Screw Steamers, the
[Iura?] & Melita belong to this line
& some others I think they call at
Halifax now dearest I dare say
Robert will be able help you to
select which line & vessel to come
by and I hope and pray God will
preserve us all to meet in N York [New York?],
I will not take the Doctors advise [advice?] &
order you to leave Robert I fear we
would both miss him too much, I am
in hopes I will be able to get a healthy
place in the country where we will have
good air exercise & milk in plenty
I purpose D.V. [God willing?] to do business for myself
next year I have not yet determined exactly what kind or
to what extent, the latter must be determined

by the amount of Capital I can get hold of
I think it probable I will be able to borrow
on interest a few thousands from some of my sick
friends here and it will not require a great
deal to carry on the kind of business I will
do, as I do not expect to have much if any
thing to do with the credit system so common
here, which requires large capital buying most
things for cash & selling on credit. I would
rather reverse the rule & buy for credit &
sell for cash & I think it can be done.

I have spoken to Jas. [James?] Lynch to look out for a place, he
said he thought he knew one I could get that would
probably suit not far from him, I may know more
about it before I close this. 22nd this like yesterday
has been a nice cool day after 2 sultry ones, I dreamt
of you & son several times last night dearest & thought you
were both back & looking as you describe yourselves, you
quite handsome again & son a big chap running about and
climbing on chairs & everything, [apropos?] of chairs, those
I bought are all new & nice looking & cheaper than the
old ones [?] 1 large rocker 1.80 with arms, cane bottom & back
like Mrs Lynches old dining room chair, 2 serving chairs 2.25 cash 2 1/4
cane seats & backs, dark color [colour?] wood, 1 fancy painted wood chair
40c 6 cherry wood dining room 62 1/2 each 6 Imitation Mahogany parlor
[parlour?] chairs 1.20 each all cane seats, the Mirrors are 9 + 12 ins. in
handsome frames to hang up 40 [$ ea?]

St Pauls Church has got 9 bells & they are singing chimes
while I write it reminds me of the joy bells in Derry
Cathedral, they cost about 1$ pr lb & all together weigh
over 6000 lbs. Bishop wanted the Building Committee
on Wednesday night to agree to buy the old bell
for our new Church (which is slated now) I have not
heard whether they consented or not, it was stated
in one of the papers this morning that Grace Church
had got it, but I think that is a mistake, they
have no money to buy with. The chimes are playing home
sweet home now. It is astonishing to think of your
not being home sick after living near two years
in this country (tho' [though?] not in a very settled way) and being
now amongst people whom you knew all your life &
not tired of them either I warrent [warrant?] well I suppose such
things have happened before, but the indulging in such
"skittish" dreams is the worst of all, a thing I never dream
of and then to think of your wanting to make a Paddy
of your American son passes all comprehenshun [comprehension?]
we may have to do that same dearest if we find on

a further trial that this climate does not agree
better with you than it did before, if we should
give up without another trial we might regret it
hereafter, try dearest wife to get Tilly to come
with you for six months to try the effects of
the change in her constitution I have strong hopes
it would be the very best thing for her & for no
other reason would I ask her to leave home, you
know she could return next spring or summer &
no doubt we could get her a safe escort the whole or part of the way.