Main content

Title: Letters to and from Robert Taylor, Pennsylvania.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FileTaylor, Thomas/172
SenderTaylor, Thomas
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationfarmer
Sender Religionunknown
OriginBallygoskin, Co. Down, N.Ireland
DestinationMifflinburg, Pennsylvania, USA
RecipientTaylor, Robert
Recipient Gendermale
SourceT 1435: Copied by Permission of Mrs W.A.F. Martin, Tobermoney, Co Down. #TYPE EMG Extracts from Letters, Taylor Family, Ballygoskin & Rathcunningham, Co Down, to Robert Taylor, Buffalo Valley, Pennsylvania U.S.A. 1799 - 1827.
ArchivePublic Record Office, N. Ireland
Doc. No.9001021
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
Log16:01:1990 LT created 24:08:1990 CD input 29:08:19
Word Count979
TranscriptBallygaskin [Ballygoskin?] April 24th, 1827.
My Dear Bob.
I wrote you last year, whether my letter came to hand I cannot tell, but
rec'd [received?] none from you last year or this one, you wrote to me
about your Barn and House. I suppose I have a better Barn than you, we have
a thrashing [threshing?] Machine of a two horse power, cost 20 Guineas, the
[they?] can thrash [thresh?] 2 tons of wheat in a day. You will be
surprised when I tell you, that my son tells me we had about 14 tons of
Wheat last year, we keep 3 men and one Boy, besides my own 2 Sons, which
works as little as possible, but keep the work going on, Thomas is about 5
feet 9 inches high, Nath'l [Nathaniel?] 6 feet, Robert 5 feet 10 inches, and
is now in the 3 year of his apprenticeship in Belfast, terms 4 years, 80
pounds of a fee, Boards & Lodges with his Master, he entered the first
Oct'r [October?] 1824, my Bond lies for 300 pounds for his good behaviour,
he says, he never thought long in Belfast and is seldom in Ballygaskin
[Ballygoskin?]. My family is getting up. Mary is not very tall but
[father's?] herself pretty well, Jane is growing rather taller than her elder
sisters, Betty is 10 years old, Ann 8, the two youngest 5, all very Docile,
and has got a pretty good Education, has better language than formerly.
(Thomas Taylor appears to have had a very young family, for a man who was
nearly 95 years of age at the time this letter was written W.F.W.) You
would not know this country if you were to come over, great improvements in
the Roads and in Labour of all kinds, we have no [now?] 3 horse ploughs, has
no driver, but ploughs with Lines.
We have ploughing matches, two or three parishes join together, Killibagh or
Killinchy each year about, you ill [will?] be surprised when I tell you 47
ploughs started this year, 30 in Ballytrim & 17 in corporation, my plough
got the first prize in Corporation 1; 5; 0 about 60 dined in Killibagh
(Killileagh), Lord Dufferen [Dufferin?] in the Chair. I am reckoned a Prodidy
[prodigy?]; about 3 years ago my legs were full of water & it was thought I
would (have) died of a Dropsey [dropsy?], I was very ill, but I got out of bed
about the latter end of April, and kept up till Christmas last, I have been
out of Bed these 3 or 4 days. I was born the first of June, 1734 & you were
born 1759. Our Kilns & Mills is so very convenient & complete that we have
very little trouble in making Meal, we work with Robert Frew, son of the late
John Frew of Ballyminister, Nathan'l [Nathaniel?] goes and gets it dried,
Thomas goes and if the [there?] are 10 or 12 sacks, get [gets?] it ground &
sifted, & does not take any of the Boys with him, we are getting carts now,
we have one and intend getting another. (Perhaps there is something in this,
that was mentioned in my last letter to you, but I cannot be certain of your
receiving it) A Mr. Martin originally of Belfast, but was a long time in New
York, purchased land about Old Mills & built a Cotton Factory 100 Feet long
40 feet Broad & 5 stories [storeys?] High (It is given as Ston s in the
above letter W.F.W.) employs a great number of hands, he has built a Grain
Mill at Claylough, she is to have 3 pair of Stones, he has purchased land
from they [the?] Coffey's so that he loses no water from his factory. We are
building a new meeting house 70 feet long 50 feet wide and 26 feet high, a
very expensive building, cost about 2000 pounds, Killileagh is greatly
improved, we have got rid of the Mill where the road leave Tullavery it
turns to the right going to the old mill & goes near the Mill Dam, a Bridge
thrown over the Mill race turns short along the west side of the Mill race
runs forward to the water but does not cross it, turns short at Old Mill,
takes down past the House where your father last lived, Mr. Martin has
raised & lost houses there, but I never seen them, the last Journey I took
was to see your father-in-law's funeral, (John Gordon's) (It appears from
the above statement, the Taylor and Gordon families lived in the same
neighborhood [neighbourhood?] W.R.W.) We have no double siding, all upon
[open?] Cars, one sort or other. I think you were Decidedly wrong, that you
did not send one of your sons over. I have reason to thank God that my
mental powers is as good they were 40 years ago and rather better. The
Factory is about 40 yards East from where Philemy had his Kiln. If this
goes to hand you will not neglect writing. Perhaps I may be dead before it
arrives, but any of my sons can answer your letter.
My wife has been poorly these two years past with a liver complaint and
greatly troubled with pains, she has a great trouble with me, I could do
badly without her, but the family she had to work through was very
fatiguing. Your sister-in-law Peggy, (Mrs. Thomas Clandinen) is got
Married again & I believe is doing pretty well, And'w [Andrew?] Gaddes &
Anthony Smith are both very poorly, I believe their life is a little better
than mine. Your sister Jenny of Glasgow & Gawn coffey's wife died [some?]
short time ago. My son, Robert, your namesake, writes this for me.
I remain yours &c & my best wishes
attend you and your family
Addressed as above Tho's [Thomas?] Taylor