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Title: Murphy, Kate A to Pettit, John, 1868
CollectionArgentina - Pettit
SenderMurphy, Kate A
Sender Genderfemale
Sender Occupationunknown
Sender Religionunknown
OriginBuenos Aires, Argentina
DestinationMelbourne, Australia
RecipientPettit, John
Recipient Gendermale
Doc. No.
Partial Date
Doc. Type
Word Count700
Genreweather, Xmas celebrations, politics, family
TranscriptBuenos Aires, September 12th, 1868.
My dear John,
As I always feel so very glad to receive a letter from you I will flatter myself that you feel likewise on receiving mine so as I am still in town though you are in my debt, I will write again. I am happy to say I have no bad news to tell you this time, no like my last it contained nothing but sad news – all our family as well as friends are enjoying perfect health. I trust yourself and father are well we are very anxious to hear if he has recovered his sight.
The season here now is delightful, it will continue so until about December when the weather becomes dreadfully warm, we look forward with anxiety this year to the summer months, fearing again the return of that dreadful visitation cholera. I hope God will have mercy upon us and not send it three years in succession.
How do you spend Xmas? Here it does be very dull indeed, the natives allow it to pass over unnoticed never celebrating it no more than any ordinary holy day, New Year likewise, there are no grand preparations to usher in Merry Xmas as in England, and then in the country parts it is just the time shearing the sheep is over so the people are about that time coming to town to sell their wool. The grandest time for the natives in the camp “the gauchos” is the shearing as at some estancias they do be a month or more perhaps shearing in this country you must remember men and women shear together then at night they have what they call “Cailes” or dances, their favourite instrument is the guitar and almost all of them play a little, they have great taste for music so for them it is a time of great joy, people coming out from England do be greatly amused at their dances.
I expect you will see in the Standard the account of our new President Samiento, there was great welcoming him to Buenos Aires the day he landed, he has been travelling in Europe and in the States, I believe, he has come out full of English notions, and you know that won’t do to expect to make such reformations all in a day. We only hope he may fulfil his post and at once put an end to this horrible war that we are all sick and tired of. How blessed you are to be living in such a peaceable country. Do you know they also oblige the putinos to serve, that is the young men born in this country but of foreign parents? My brothers have been very fortunate in that as they succeeded in getting English protections from the English Consul. How lucky for you that you will not have to trouble yourself about that when you come to S. America as no one will know you are a Portino or perhaps dear cousin you would like to sport the military uniform it is such an elegant dress, I am sure some of the men volunteer for nothing else than to have the pleasure of sporting the dress, but I would forgive such patriotism.
Sally sent you some Standards a few days since, perhaps they may contain more news here than before as one of the Editors had been travelling in Europe and has lately come back to B. Aires married to a young Irish lady she is very beautiful and accomplished and naturally has created a great sensation here in B. Aires.
My dear cousin, I am sending you the likeness of my youngest brother who is still at College, it is not a very good likeness but nevertheless it will serve to add to your collection. Dearest Cousin, I will be anxiously expecting a letter from you soon, and, now I must be wishing you Goodbye my Aunt, Sally, Fanny and all your cousins desire to be remembered to yourself and father and my kindest regards to my uncle and trusting he is well, yourself dearest John except the warmest love of your fond and affectionate cousin,
Kate Agnes Murphy