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Title: John Lindsay, U. S. A. to William McCullough, Co. Londonderry.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
Filelindsay, john p/31
SenderLindsay, John P.
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationsupervisor at railway company
Sender Religionunknown
OriginPort Clinton, Penn., USA
DestinationCo. Derry, N.Ireland
RecipientMcCullough, William
Recipient Gendermale
Relationshipprob. brothers-in-law
SourceD/3305/2/6: Deposited by Dr. K. A. Miller.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, Northern Ireland.
Doc. No.9805359
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by LT, 14:05:98.
Word Count1480
Berks [Berkshire ?] Co. Oct 24th 1848
Mr William McCullough

Dear Sir
I have many times proposed writing to
you, but Matilda being generally anxious to writ, [write ?]
I gave place, particularly as her opportunitys of replying
to letters recieved are rather rare, the letters we receive,
at least from Ireland, are as angels visits are said to be,
few and far between and as Matildas letters generally contained
anything of interest that one had to communicate. I usually
found myself more or less at a loss for a subject on which to
write, however I have at last ventured to address you lest
you should think that I had forsworn writing, and although my
letter may be altogether void of interest, I trust that
it will be none the less acceptable on that account.
Matilda had a letter from Jane a few days ago, from
which we were glad to hear that you were all in good
health. she speaks of the potatoe crop as promising very
badly, but from accounts red [received ?] by the last
steamer I see that the blight has not been so general as
was at first supposed. I hope that your crop has not
suffered so much as you anticipated. The potatoe crop
in this country has also suffered severly from a
similar cause, but not being very largely cultivated,
its failure does not affect the community to such an
extent as it does at home where the potatoe is in a great
measure the sole food of the major portion of the
population, we have many speculations here as to the cause
of the blight, and numerous modes have been proposed
for its prevention, but I have heard of none proving
successful, I have no doubt however but that an
efficient remedy will yet be discovered. We have many good
farmers in this country but generally speaking they
are very far inferior to our Irish farmers, I have
often thought that if the land in this country was
cultivated as it must necessarily be cultivated at
home in order to produce a crop, the farmers would realize
twice as much from the same number of acres as they do
by the system in general use. I of course do not
understand farming to any great extent, never having made
it my study but I certainly think the American system
of farming very imperfect I sometimes feel sorry that I do
not know more about it, as there is no man can be more
independant and comfortable , if he wishes to be so, than
an America farmer, he has everything within himself except
trifling luxuries which could easily be dispensed with, and
the thing that troubles men most and which they struggle
most to obtain, he can do without - I mean money - unless
what is required to pay his taxes I can see no other use
he has for money.
It is within the reach of every man who wishes, to obtain
a farm in this state lands can be bought out for $100 to $1
per acre, those lands situated in the immediate neighbourhood
of large cities, such as Philadelphia De. [Delaware ?]
generally command a very high price, but in a thickly
populated country and convenient to good market towns, Ohia
farms can be bought for $30 to $100 per acre according to their
improvements and in terms as easy and accommodating as could
be desired - An acquaintance of mine a few days ago bought a
farm of 160 acres of prime land, nearly all cleared and fenced,
with fine dwellings house, barns, stables &c, and plently of
coal and wood on the property - for $1500 being the rate of
about œ2 per acre, bought out forever, and had 15 years to
pay it in, and within as convenient a distance from a good
market as Ballyartan is from Derry. Those who wish to
purchase cheaper, by going to a more remote locality can
get excellent land but without any improvements, for $1
to $1.25 per acre or from 4 to 5 shillings, and by moderate
labor [labour ?] in 21 years or less they can have as
much cleared and under cultivation as will raise sufficient
for the support of a larger family - they again who want
farms but who have not the money to purchase, can get
160 acres for himself, 160 acres more if he has a wife
and 160 acres for each of his children, provided he occupies
and cultivates the land for five years, at the end of
which term the government will give him a clear tithe or
deed, and the land becomes his own forever, - this cannot
be obtained in Pennysylvania nor in any of the old states,
but several of the new Western and some of the Southern
States have made this offer of lands in order to encourage
The County in which we live is very populous and property
of every description sells very high, last fall I bought a small
piece of ground containing about an acre, for which I paid
$150, or about œ30, but the situation is very handsome ,
and not over a gunshot from the town of Hamburg, a very
pretty and flourishing town containing about 2000 inhabitants,
and considering the value of property in the town (some
of the lots containing only 1/8 of an acre, bringing $500.)
I think I got it cheap - I bought it soley on the strength
of the permanacy of my situation (in which it may be I
acted unwisely) because it suited my business much better
than Port Clinton, where we formerly lived, being more in the
centre of the division of the Rail Road which I superintend
and because it was healthier,as well as for several other
advantages which gained in moving - Early this season
I commenced building a house and on the 3rd of August
we moved into it - the house is 33 feet front by 32 feet
deep, and 2 stories high, on the first floor we have
an entry or vestibule, a parlour, 2 bedrooms and a
kitchen, the ceiling being 9 feet high, on the second floor
we have 3 bedrooms and one room 20 feet by 12 feet ,
with ceiling 8 feet high, and over all a garret which we
find very useful - it is very convenient and if everything
goes right we will be very comfortable with Gods blessing -
My fathers family who formerly lived in Philadelphia (that
is all of them who are not engaged in business) I persuaded
to come up and occupy a part of the house, as it is large
enough to accommodate us all - they came up on the 5th of last
I have just ground to make a good garden, but I have not been
able to do much as it yet, it will require a great deal of labor
[labour ?] and considerable outlay before [torn] can have
it to my mind, and as it is not of very great importance,
I must just work along with it as I am able, the property
as it stands now I consider worth about $1600 and was
I selling it I think I could get that sum for it - I had
a letter from John a few days ago, he is now living in
[Manaymant ?] (about 8 miles from Philda [Philadelphia ?]
with Mr Quinton the gentleman he was engaged with before
he went home, he is in good health , he has not been up to see
us since last winter, but Matilda enjoys good health, she
joins me in her kind love to all, and hopes that you will
write often to her, our little Anna Ellen is now near 13
months old, she is a fine lively little thing and very
interesting - I presume it was you who sent us the Beans and
Canley seeds, if so please accept my kind thanks, and if not
please thank the person who did, for me - I would be glad
that I had an opportunity of sending to you and your father and
Ian some little token of remembrance, but living so
far from the city and being so seldom there, I can never
meet with or hear of any person who is going to Derry by
whom I could send anything - Please give my kind respects
to your father and Jane and also to Hugh - I wrote to Hugh last
March but never received an answer, - please say to Jane that
I will write to her very soon, and hoping to hear from you
soon and often - I remain
Yours most sincerely
Jno [John ?] P Lindsay
might I sometimes receive an Irish paper from you - I hardly
ever see one