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Title: [James Du Pre?] Alexander to the [Countess of Caledon?]
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
Filelord caledon/99
SenderLord Caledon (James Du Pre Alexander)
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationarmy officer
Sender Religionunknown
OriginQuebec, Canada
RecipientCountess of Caledon
Recipient Genderfemale
SourceD 2433/B/8/14: Deposited by the Trustees of the Caledon Estates
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, N. Ireland
Doc. No.800158
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by LT, 10:08:00.
Word Count816
TranscriptGrosse Isle
Sept 3 [1838?]

My dear Mother

As it is a long time since I heard from
you last I suppose that you have been on the move from
Lemington [Spa?] I have been for some time on detachment
at the Quarantine station Grosse Isle on the St. Lawrence
below Quebec and as there is not much communication
I cannot tell you what is going on there it is reported
however that Lord Durham returns immediately to England
and that Sir Jno [John?] Colborne will be Governor General;
there are also rumours of more disturbances this winter
several pieces of artillery having been seized coming
over the frontier, it will be more serious than the last
outbreak as if there is a major fighting there will be
few prisoners taken the others having been let off
so easily, however no one knows what will happen
till the winter sets in there are no habitants on
this little island, the forces consist of two rusty,
old 12 pounders (an old commandant a major of
the 83rd [Swinburne] who was with my Father at the
Cape and his wife and family a lieutenant and party
of the 15th myself and about 30 of the Coldstream
three doctors a baker from Five mile Town and a
wife and sister in Law from the same place who all
recognized me that is all the inhabitants except
the occasional inmates of the Hospital; there have
been but few emigrants this year there have only
been 200 Highlanders since I have been here, the
river here is about 18 miles broad and we are in
the centre. I have a small boat and amuse myself
shooting snipe and wild fowl the geese are just
beginning to come up in great quantities. Our
little island is very pretty and large trees
growing on it. We cut down what we please for
fuel close to our houses, I have one room which is
built of wood entirely, with a stove in it not
unlike a large dog-kennel with a door, it is however
very comfortable. We remain here till the winter
sets in and then proceed to Quebec where we remain
should there be no disturbances but as it is more
than probable that there will be, I think we shall
move higher up the country beyond Montreal. We
have plenty of vegetables in this island, the
potatoes being very fine and the Indian corn ripens
well and is very good eating there is a sort of
snipe the people call [allouetts?] which is
nearly as large as our snipe on the other islands
and I can kill enough to supply myself, we have
rations 1lb of meat and 2lb of bread a day and
about a pint of wine per week. The General very
kindly sent me down a ham some jam and other little
delicacies yesterday so that I can feast now.
I dined with the Hospital Dr. yesterday and heard
some stories of shipwrecks on Anticosti
[Isle d'Anticosti?] that would make the English
ones appear a party of pleasure in one instance
where the whole crew had died having gradually
eaten another up the last man was found dead and
they were within 30 miles of the provision post.
There are great numbers of fine ships here they
are obliged to come to anchor off this island and
get a bill of health bef [before?] they can proceed
I see by an extract from one of the Newry papers
that the crops have been very [abundant?] in the
North of Ireland I hope you found every thing looking
well [stain] Caledon. I wish you could see what weather
we have here just like the finest Irish day which is
finer than any others and the moon so brilliant that
you can read the smallest print with as great ease
as with the aid of the sun, I have seen the northern
lights make the country as light as the moon would with
us. I have bought Bayfields chart of the Lawrence which
is very beautifully executed and very interesting to me.
I find that the Depth of the Saqueney [Saguenay?] to be
only about 104 fathoms I thought that it had been more
the mountains are not in the chart but I believe there
is a separate one. I intend if I can get a fortnight
or three weeks leave when I return to Quebec to get
out moose deer hunting with the Indians. Tollemache
will be over at Castle Blayney will you let the coachman
know that he is to have my bay horse "Diamond" and the
little mare that I bought in Omagh last year I have sold
them to him I hope that my Father still continues well
I remain my dear Mother
Your affecte [affectionate?] Son
[James Du Pre?] Alexander

I do not exactly know how this letter will reach you

[Addressed to?] The Earl of Caledon

Postmarked Free 6 NO 6 1838