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Title: John McBride, Paterson, Jersey to James McBride, Derriaghy.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
Filemcbride, john/91
SenderMcBride, John
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationweaver
Sender Religionunknown
OriginPaterson, New Jersey, USA
DestinationLisburn, Co. Antrim, N.Ireland
RecipientMcBride, James Sr
Recipient Gendermale
SourceT 2613/2: Copied by Permission of Mrs Emily McLister, Mosside Cottage, Dunmurry, County Antrim.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, Northern Ireland.
Doc. No.9007096
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by JM 06:09:1993.
Word Count1340
TranscriptEssex County
State of Jersey Patterson [Paterson?]
My Dear Father Aug [August?] 8th 1819
I take this opportunity of writing to you by a man who is going
to Ireland from this place, I would have written to you sooner but
did not like till I could give some satisfaction. I arrived in N: [New?] York
on the 7th of July but did not go to my Aunts that night. I went to
her house next day she was glad to see me, and told me she had sent
an Ansr [Answer?] to my letter containing very best encouragement. Indeed I
think no wonder she did as times are very hard here at present, it is
almost impossible to get work of any kind, I staid [stayed?] with my Aunt
a Fortnight and was looking for employment nearly all that time but
could get none. I went to see Francis Huddleson who keeps a store
(or Public House) in N: [New?] York he was very friendly with me, his brothers
Saml [Samual?] & Thos [Thomas?] are carrying numbers of Books, they called at
my Aunts to see me, and they said they were going out the next day to a
Town called Newark in the State of Jersey nine miles from N:Y: [New York?]
they said I might have a chance of falling into employment some
place out there so I went with them and try'd all I could to get
work but in vain. I heard at Newark of some Factorys [factories?] at a place
called Bloomfield four miles farther on, and as I had a letter to a man in
Patterson [Paterson?] called Wm [William?] Tinsley I thought I wold [would?]
go and see what I could do on the road from Newark to Patterson [Paterson?], I
set off for Bloomfield & called at all the Factorys [factories?] I could hear
of but none of them could employ me as they were turning off most of their
hands, the owner of one of those Factorys [factories?] very kindly took me
home with him and kept me all night he [?] me very kindly his name is
[Cockfair?]. Next morning I continued my journey to Patterson [Paterson?].
Indeed I now have travelled 100 miles in this country and I have not seen any
good Land yet it is quite [?] upon when I came to Patterson [Paterson?] I
went to Wm [William?] Tinsley and he went with me to a man who engaged me to
Weave Cotton the kind I am at present weaving [?] a twill (or [H--sey?] as tis
here called) it is a 700 [&?] is about as broad as the Calico with you I have 4
cents a yd: [yard?] for it last yr: [year?] it was 7 1/2 cents a yd: [yard?].
I pay 2 1/4 Dollars (11..3 Sterling) a week for my board and lodging and 5
cents for each shirt stockings or [?] I get washed and 60 cents a week for
Winding, the number of the yarn I am weaving is, the Warp 9 skain [skein?] and
the Weft 10 to the lb [pound?] it is not Dressed
I cannot say how much I can make as I have not been long here.
there are in this Town of Cotton mills / Duck (or Sail Cloth) Mill
/ Nail Factory A Saw Mill / Tow Mill/ Paper Mill; There is
no Protestant Church here there is a Presbytarian [Presbyterian?] Church a
Dutch Reformed Church & a house where Methodists meet, The People here
and all places of America I have seen Dress very fine (in particular
the Ladies who are foolish in that Article) I have seen the Mill Girls
dressed all in their silks with veils over their faces & sun fans in their
hands They are in general most shamefully Proud.
When they work in the Mills you`ll scarce see them for frills
with their frocks & their Tippets so gay
There is English and Scotch French Irish and Dutch
Thus to pride great attention they pay
In their dress they are neat but they're still not complete
They wish to dress well as the best
No Caps they do wear but will stick in their hair
As many Combs as theres in a Wasps Nest.
There are Six Stores and a Bank in this town, it is 21 Miles from N:Y:
[New York?] There is a stage which goes to N:Y: [New York?] one day & comes
back the next. the fare is 1 Dol: [dollar?] there & 1 Back again
Before I left my Aunts there were men there who had been at
Pittsburgh the [they?] said Times were even more Dull there than here
I believe it is the case over all America, Dr [Dear?] Father the People
of Ireland are sorely mistaken about this Country, from, what
I have seen & heard of it I would not allow any one to come here
unless they had some friend before them who would have a place
ready for them, If times are not a great deal worse than the [they?] were
when I left it there is no man if he would be as Industrious at
home as he has to be here but would be a great deal better, It is
true those who are in good employment here make a great deal of
money but when they pay from 5 to 7 Dol: [Dollars?] for making a Coat and
3/4 Sterling for making a Shirt it takes it all to do. Weavers here
all work in Cellars which answer well in this Warm Climate There
are Five of us who work in this Shop Three of whom are Irish one [torn]
and one English, the man I live with is from Ballymena [torn]
name is James Close. Thank God I have had the best health
since I left home I never was better than I am at present Jas [James] Hunter
left me at Lubec [Lubeck?] to go to Boston he was to write to me to the care of
my Aunt but I have not heard from him yet, Give my love to Wm [William?]
Philips and Jane & tell Wm [William?] I will send him a letter soon, Give my
Love to my Aunt Betty to my Uncle J [Gi-tiland?] & his Wife and tell them I
hope to spend some happy hours with them yet in Ireland; give my
love to J McHenry and tell him his trade is not doing well here this year
give my love to John Bleak and tell him to give over his notion of coming
here as he is better than he could think to be here. give my kind love to Ann
Hall her father & Uncle tell her I heard of her friends in Nova Scotia which
I will tell her of soon Dear Father give my love to my Brother & Sisters and
write to me as soon as you can. I am your affectionate son John McBride

Dr [dear?] Father I trust in GOD this will find you all in good
health, Write to the care of my Aunt 28 Henry St [street?] & write soon
tell me of any thing Strange that has happened in the neighbourhood
since I left it. And now Dr [Dear?] Father may the great giver
of health Bless you all with it as the Prayers of J [John?] McBride

The price of Rye Flour is 12/6 sterl: [sterling?] per Cwts [hundred weights?]
Wheat flour 6 to 7 1/2 Dol: [dollars?] per Barrel of 196 Indian Meal 2 Dol:
[dollars?] per Cwt [hundred weights?] Beef 10 to 12 cents per lb [pound?]
Mutton the same Butter 22 to 24 cents per lb [pound?]
Sugar 12 to 15 cents per lb [pound?] Tea 5/0 to 8/4 per lb [pound?]
Potatoes 2/6 sterling per Bushil [bushel?]; I am in a fine
Country and with the help of GOD & my own Industry I am
not afraid till things are become better I hope the first is the [?]

To Mr James McBride Derrighy [Derriaghy]
Care of
Mr Wm [William?] Philip Innkeeper
October 2nd 1819 Ireland
Augt [August?] 8th 1819