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Title: William Porter, Chicago, U.S.A., to "Dear Brother", Co. Down.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FilePorter, William/11
SenderPorter, William
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationbuilder/farmer
Sender ReligionPresbyterian
OriginChicago, Illinois, N.Ireland
DestinationCo. Armagh? N.Ireland
RecipientPorter, Robert L.
Recipient Gendermale
SourceD 1152/3/15: Presented by Mr. Charles Best, Mullaghglass, Bessbrook, Co.Armagh.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, N. Ireland.
Doc. No.9612192
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by LT, 03:12:96.
Word Count1192
TranscriptChicago, March 6 1860

Dear Brother
I now adress [address?] you a
few lines and I would have written
sooner but I was waiting for the
reception of the box of seeds that you
said in you letter of December you sent and
I am affraid [afraid?] that the [they?] are
got lost or mislaid by the way you did not
mention how the [they?] were sent to New York
and I dont know where to enquire
about them I had a letter on the
3rd for Joseph from Thos [Thomas?] Ledlie
and newspaper also for Joseph I have
not heard from Andrew since
November last he wrote me that he
was coming to see us and the country
but he did not come Joseph and
his family is well at present although
Joseph was not well for some time
I am expecting to be able to build
out there this summer if God spares
me although it is very hard to get
money here just now I am building a
house now for a widow woman
from Belfast for less than half
what I would got 3 years ago
and then I have to wait a year
for 200 dollars of the price
This is what we call election
Day that is electing officers of the
city such as Mayor & aldermen and there
was the greatest kind of excitement between
what is called here Democrats & Republicans
Just what there would be protestant and
catholick [catholic?] all catholicks [catholics?]
here is Democrats or for slavery and all
Republicans is prodistants [protestants?] or not
for slavery but it is not known yet which will
beat the Irish the most furious of all worse
than ever you saw them for the meanest
one of them here has a vote if he is here
5 years and I wish you seen some
specemins [specimens?] that will cast a vote as
good as the best man in the land
but I suppose you will take no
interest in this rigmarole.
I will now write a little about myself
and in the first place I am doing
all I can to get a good crop on
the farm this year and you will think
it strange when I tell you that I have
bought an old country iron plow [plough?] that
was made in Belfast by [Gracey?]
the great plow [plough?] maker and I bought
her for 16s of you money only the [they?]
has no coulter on her and I made
a harrow like the one I made my
father the only one in the country
like it self the [they?] have all sorts
here you could think of some that revolves round
and cross harrows at the same time it end harrows
So now we have more utensils and stock
than any of our neighbours that has been
there many years and we are determined
to try the old country plan of farming
for in past there is no farming here that
could be called such and still the [they?] will
raise wonderful crops I hope to be able
to gave [give?] you a good act [account?] of our
labour for we posses [posess?] some advantages
that not many does and if we were a little abler
to do all at once that we need but it is
the worst time since I came here to [come?]
for if Joseph had come 2 or 3 years
sooner then I had 50 dollars a month
of rent and now I have 16 so that is
a wonderful change but with God's
help we will soon be better than
ever we could expect to be there
Joseph has 3 cows & 2 is milking
and one we bought of [off?] the Glenys is
soon to calf & I have one that will
soon calf which cost me 50 dollars or 10
guineas of your money a good cow but not
worth so much [torn] half only that
it was all I could get for a bad Debt.
There is a new school house to be built this
summer down the village where our farm
is and we expect to get the building of it
and that would keep us the most of the
summer I am making plans for it now
after a scetch [sketch?] I made some time
a go [ago?] it will be 42 feet long & 30 wide
to answer the double purpose of school & church
some one wanted to know if there was a church
near the place there is one within 10 minutes walk
of where Joseph lives but the [they?] are Methodists
the only kind that is in the country nearer than
8 miles but to say the truth Joseph does
not incline to any church & if I go down
there to live it is hard to say what I may
think for I have belonged to the covenanters
or Reformed Presbyterians here and I am
sorry to say that I am fast loosing [losing?] confidence
even in them for I find some double dealing
and also some views in there [their?] doctrin [doctrines?]
that I cannot give sanction to in short the [they?]
preach one thing and practice [practise?] another
which I believe all does to some extent you
are more happy in spiritual affairs
there than we are here for many reasons
and first you are brought up in one church
and seldom thinks of change but all here
is change and no one or thing is steady
which creates a [torn] complication spirit maybe
time I think of [stain] [remarks?] I heard my uncle
James making once that America would
be the princephal [principal?] seat of the gospel
yet as well as freedom of laws but if he was
to be all here I think he would change
his mind and there is this much I will say if
you dont [don't?] get them in there [their?] purity
there dont [don't] come here for to find them; not but
there is such a thing but money corrupts all and there
is a stronger love of it here than there
I have run on at a fooish rate but you will excuse
me for I got in the train of thought W Porter

I hope all my Brothers and sisters in Mullaghglass is
well I seen there [their?] families encreases [increase?]
in number may they also grow in grace

I have forgot to say we are all well I was not so for
many years the wife says I am 4 or 5 years younger than
Joseph I hope that father and mother is well and that the
[they?] will cease fretting about us here for we are just
as well and better than if we were there and I believe
that the Lord has appointed our lot here or we would not
be here and that makes me resigned to his sikle [sickle?]
I have quit taking any kind of medicine for I believe that
doctors is the greatest curse in this world and we do rong
[wrong?] in applying to them for we should trust in