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Title: McMahon Glynn, Patrick to Glynn, Ellen, 1885
CollectionPatrick McMahon Glynn_Letters to his family (1874-1927) [Gerald Glynn O'Collins]
SenderMcMahon Glynn, Patrick
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationlawyer
Sender Religionunknown
OriginKapunda, South Australia, Australia
DestinationGort, Co. Galway, Ireland
RecipientGlynn, Ellen
Recipient Genderfemale
Doc. No.
Partial Date
Doc. Type
Word Count998
Genrefamily, politics, work, decease, horse racing
Oct. 31st 1885.

My dear Mother
It is a considerable time since I wrote to you but you must
have heard about me through James. Not often, indeed, do I hear
from the other colonies, so that little news can be sent by me of my
relations there. Fanny Glynn wrote last week, being apparently
in the best of health and good spirits. Cecilia, Robert's daughter,
is staying with her, and she and her sisters are friends, though not
completely at one. If I can manage it I will run over at Xmas,
but I don't care to be more than a week away, and that only gives
me two days in Melbourne. Not that I care very much to go,
except to see some friends there.
This is the "Derby" day in Melbourne. The racing carnival
commences today and is carried over Tuesday — the Cup day —
Thursday — the Oaks — and Saturday, the Steeplechase. Racing
has received a severe blow in South Australia by the Repeal of
the Totalizator Act which used to permit of a Totalizator, or machine
for gigantic sweep stake run by the Clubs who deducted 5%
from the total investments, being used on the Course. It was certainly
the simplest and fairest system of betting. You fancied your
horse, put a £1 or so on, & the total invested on all the horses,
less the Club's commission, was divided among those on the winner.
But it became quite a rage, & as some of our legislators here are
of a Wesleyan tinge, the Act was repealed. I expect, however, you
get the Herald regularly, so that you must know something of our
politics & my opinions as expressed in the leaders & criticisms on
them. It will interest you to know that the Herald's articles are
sometimes noticed flatteringly at home —that is, in England —- for
we always hear speak of the old country as home—the last notice I heard of being by I. H. Dell, author of The Dawning Grey, a work
you doubtless have seen noticed in the Nation & United Ireland.
Dell is an excellent artist & no mean poet. His poem on "The
Fate of Glenveith" just suits the land leaguers. Sometime ago when
lecturing by request to the Adelaide Irish on "The Life & Times of
A. M. Sullivan", I intended to have recited it; but felt rather weak
from an exceptional derangement of the stomach, so cut the lecture
Perhaps by the next post I will send you a book on South
Australian Notabilities. The author writes saying: "The leading
position which you occupy in the community together with the
efforts you have made in the cause of Land Nationalization fully
entitle you to a place in the national work etc." How he came to
that conclusion I don't know, as my writings are never signed with
my name, but nevertheless as there will be a short notice of me in
it, the book will be of interest at home.
Besides the Railway Commissioners Bill I have recently drafted
two other Bills for the Government, relating to our County Courts,
called Local Courts. In these latter I put the name of Mr. Varley,
our local Local Court Judge, with mine, as he got instructions to
consider what was required to be done in conjunction with me, &
I did the drafting. It is hard, but would be remunerative work, if
I could claim the proceeds myself, but the most I expect is a
quarter the fee. We are in for another bad season this year, which,
on the top of the existing depression, will be serious. No rain in
the spring, so the average yield of wheat, our staple product, will
not be 5 bushels to the acre. Low yield & prices.
Johnny Wallsh is still in Adelaide in a good situation. The
seductions of Hymen do not seem to have prevailed with him yet,
nor does he seem to cast a matrimonial eye upon any one that I
have heard of. We don't, however, meet often. I was very sorry
to see by the Galway Indicator that Willie Simple died, especially
as he left a wife and family. It is very sad for a young wife to
have her hopes thus cut off so soon. In some cases indeed the
wound soon closes, as our sensibilities are not all alike; but some
can feel deeply.
Today some welcome showers have fallen. For about a week
we had a forestaste of summer — thick heat which knocks all energy
out of some fellows here, though I neither mind nor like it, except
in as much as the swell of the pulses increases with heat. Talking about races I might have mentioned that for the Caulfield Cup, run
about a fortnight ago in Victoria, 43 or 44 horses were entered &
I think about 37 started, perhaps more. About a half mile from
home, when they were going at a terrific pace — one horse fell &
17 others came down in consequence just as if cannons had been
discharged amongst them. The race was a flat race, so they were
all close together, & the pace may be imagined when I say that the
race was run in 1m. 40 seeds, for 11/2 Miles. One jockey rose
for a moment all right after his fall, when a horse came dashing
into him, killing him instantaneously & knocking his — the horse's
— teeth down his throat from the collision. Some horses were
killed and many injured, & several jockeys seriously injured.
Seventeen horses & readers [sic] in a heap was rather exceptional.
I noticed by the papers that the boys were successful at the
Intermediate Examinations. You cannot send me too much news
from home & I think I get all the papers you send me. I will write
to Tuam next mail, so that with love to all I will now conclude

Your affectionate Son
P McM Glynn