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Title: Stewart, Frances to Atwood, Annie, 1870
CollectionRevisiting Our Forest Home, The immigrant letters of Frances Stewart [J. L. Aoki]
SenderStewart, Frances
Sender Genderfemale
Sender Occupationhousewife
Sender Religionunknown
OriginDouro Township, Newcsatle District, Upper Canada
DestinationOaklands, Ontario, Canada
RecipientAtwood, Annie
Recipient Genderfemale
Doc. No.
Partial Date
Doc. Type
Word Count698
Genrefamily, illness
Transcript1870: December 1
To Annie Atwood, Oaklands, Thorndale Rice Lake Plains, Ontario

Thursday 1st Dec'r 1870

My Dearest Annie

I am sure you must think me very unkind and neglectful in not having
written to you during all the long time when you were so ill and under
such dreadful afflictions. It seems cold and commonplace to assure you
that I often thought of you and intended to write, but I was very poorly,
all the hot weather, in consequence of my nose bleeding violently for
many days & then a threatening of Dropsy, which altogether exhausted
my strength & made me so shaky and weak that I really hated to begin a
letter, & I am only now getting some letters answered which have been in
my desk for many months. But indeed dearest Annie you & all your dear
relations in this neighborhood have been constantly in my mind. I had a
letter from your dear Mother some time ago, kind & loving as usual. She
still suffers very much from lumbago. But how can she be well when her
mind is (as it must be) loaded with anxiety about her two dearest sons
surrounded as they are there by dangers of so many kinds. So far Willie
had escaped smallpox & as he seems to understand the treatment so well,
we may hope he may escape that most wretched of all maladies. I have
heard of dear Kate having been at Malone & in Peterboro lately but we
seem more out of the reach of our friends than ever as I have not had the
use of my own horse for nearly a year past. She was completely used up, poor thing, & just lived walking about the Barnyard. She is not there now
& I don't know what they have done with her but she is not able to work
at all & so I have not been able to go out much, as you know what it is to
depend on farm horses for ladies recreation! Indeed our young horses
are so frisky that I don't like going out with them but now sleighing will I hope enable us to have a little more liberty. Our present set of horses are not fit for lady drivers & that is another difficulty as Bessies two eldest boys are always working for Robert & of course we must not take them
for our indulgence....
I am now such a bad correspondent my hands tremble so much that
some times I cannot write at all. But when I am well I feel stronger &
steadier. You know I am very old & have become much more infirm
within the last few years and my deafness has encreased so much that I
am very stupid. Bessie of course cannot sit much with me as she has not
had any servant for three months or more & her family is not small even
tho' her two big boys generally take their dinner & tea at Roberts.
I am happy to say our darling Kate is better but far far from well or
strong yet. She has been staying in town with Louisa for three weeks &
came back last Saturday certainly a good deal better but still very far
from strong & looking so pale & thin that you would hardly know her.
However, she is fortunate in having a very good servant at last. And
Caroline Mathias lives with them & helps her a great deal in attending
to the children & sewing as well as in household cares & is a cheerful
pleasant companion so that Kate is better off now than almost anyone
I know. Here I am happy to say we are all well but there is much [very]
fatal fever in the country & [more] especially in town. Every day we hear
of two or three deaths. We have got an excellent Doctor in our good old
Dr. McNabbs place. Dr. & Mrs. Burritt are quite an acquisition to our
Society & from poor Kates tedious illness we have become quite intimate
& sociable....
Believe me as ever Your Loving Mamma, F. Stewart...