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Title: McCance, John to McLeod, Agnes, 1856
CollectionOceans of Consolation [D. Fitzpatrick]
SenderMcCance, John
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationgold-digger
Sender Religionunknown
OriginVictoria, Australia
DestinationGrey Abbey, Co. Down, Northern Ireland
RecipientMcLeod, Agnes
Recipient Genderfemale
Relationshipson-in-law - mother-in-law
Doc. No.
Partial Date
Doc. Type
Word Count1206
TranscriptOld Post Office Hill forest Creek
October 7th 1856
Dear Mother
No doubt but by this time you will be begining to think that we have
intirely forgoten you but as the old saying is it is better Late than never.
So at last I volenteer to write a few more lines to inform you that we are
all as yet alive and in the injoyment of good health thanks be to God for
his continued mercys to us and we would fondly hope that these lines will
find you still alive and in the injoyment of the same Blessings.
Indeed our good health is our best news at present although we have
no great reason to complain as we still get plenty to eat and Drink with
raiment to put on in decency but we are not laying up so much of fortune
as we could wish to do. But I do asure you that it takes a good fortune to
Keep so Large a family on these diggins but I think I have giving you a
detail of provisons before and I am trying to make them as good schoolars
as posable. We have three of them at the school at present and they are
geting on very well in grammer geography in reading writeing spelling and
in counting or figuering also and to Keep them fed and clad here to our
likeing is not an easy task but we are still geting them Brought up as we
hope to be of Some use but perhaps when they get up they will be of none.
I doubt not but before you get this that you will be in the injoyment
of your Small present which your grandchildren sent to you. Indeed you
may not thank me for what I sent you but at the same time you may thank
me for it as it was me that put it in adgation [?agitation] long before it
was performed but I did only aply to the younger class of the boys as I
think the older ones would have been above it. But Hamilton could not
withhold his mite when the others was sending but when they did take the
notion they took us very much unawares for Thomas was detemined to
send I beleive five pounds. At any rate he would have made it £20. But as
Thomas lives at a little distance from us and as I was down at the Back
Creek as it is called Keeping the shop for Mrs John the time that they were
at Castlemaine which is 14 miles from Back Creek where the money was
deposited so Thomas did not get the opertunity at that time. No doubt but
they would send you all the perticulars of who did send it but as I had not
the plesure of writeing the letter I do not Know. At any rate I will state it
here. Hamilton sent £5 James 5 Nathaniel 5 and Alexander the Remainder.
I am also glad to Know that they have been sending you some little presents
This oppertunity we were very greived to have missed as we had
some little presents which we would have been glad to have sent but we
were taken by surprise. We did hear some week or so before that John
Lackey was goeing home in the ship Red Jacket and we were resolved to
have a little percle [parcel] made up with directions on each present. But
the next word that came was that he had altered his mind and so we left
off then. William Patton came up one day post haste on his way to Castlemaine
for the money which they had in the Bank saying that John L was
goeing off in the morning but we had nothing Ready. Our presents would
have consisted of Gold and speciments. I do not Know whither the boys
has sent you any speciments or not as Agness forgot to ask when she was
down last week. A specimen! is a mixture of Gold and Quartze or stone
which is something like the little white stones that you will see on the shore
beach from a burnt looking white till as clear as flint glass which is called
Cristalized quartze.
Agness will be down to Back Creek in a few days again which is 10
miles as Mrs John McMillin now expects an adation to her family and as
it is a custome in this place to have some woman which they call a nurse
for the space of one month. So she thinks that none will suit her better
than her mother in law and I do asure you that Agness does think her
worthy of any serveice that she can render her so that you may please to
let Mrs Regan her mother Know that she has got a doughter here that
is no discredit to her. She is a Kind open hearted and charitable woman she
is ready to asist even a stranger which may chance to give her a call and
she is Loving, affactionate and Dutiful to us as the only parents she has
got in this country and allways showing too much Kindness to us. Indeed
I often wonder at her and I must say it again that she is a credit to herself
a credit to her parents & a credit to her country or neighbourhood. As for
my own part I do feel happy and at home when in her presence as much
so as if she realy was my own doughter when I beleive that I never would
be under the roof of my other doughter in laws were it not for the Kind
and Brotherly hand which Hamilton is ever ready to extend to me when
ever we meet which I state much to his credit. So you may tell Mrs Regan
that she need not think of nor fret concerning her child as she seems happy
and contented with us as a family.
No doubt but that you will be writeing as soon as you can find it
convenient. We would like to Know concerning James how him and family
is geting on and whether he is geting better in health and how Eliza and
family and all our friends is geting along and perticularly when any deaths
may ocurr amongst our old neighbours and do let us Know whether our
old friend Jane McShane be yet alive.
I forgot to say that John & Thomas will send you some more money
when nessacery and Agness does Request me to warn you to look to yourself
as it might be that if your pocket was empty you might not have many
to look to you. We wish to Know who is your most atentive friend as we
might have an oppertunity of some person goeing home to near Grey Abbey
yet. The children all joins us in Kind affactionate Love to you and we
inclose a little of little Agnesses hair to you with a little of our young
Colinst's [colonist's] Francis Edwards. No more at present but Remains
your affactionate Son & Doughter
J & Agness McCance