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Title: John Hall, Pennsylvania, USA, to Maggie Black, Dungannon, Co Tyrone.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FileHall, John L/35
SenderHall, John L.
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationunemployed (operated machines on a steamboat)
Sender Religionunknown
OriginMcDonald, Pennsylvania, USA
DestinationDungannon, Co. Tyrone, N.Ireland
RecipientBlack, Maggie
Recipient Genderfemale
SourceD 2041/13: Purchased from J.A. Gamble, 44 Taunton Ave., Belfast 15.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, N. Ireland.
Doc. No.9403033
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by LT, 08:03:1994.
Word Count833
TranscriptTo: Maggie Black (nee Hall)
[Ranfurly Terrace?]
[County Tyrone?]

From: John Hall
Washington County,
November 27, 1888

Washington Co [County?]
pa [Pennsylvania?]
27th Novr [November?] 1888

My Dear Maggie
I received your letter enclosed in
Annie's and indeed I was extremely glad to
hear from you both. Susan and Florrie wrote
me a day or two ago told me how ill [she?] had been
but am glad to hear she is so well again and
am sure the change to Dungannon will do her
a lot of good Dada also wrote me and told me
about Lytle's situation and illness which
was very unfortunate just when he was
getting into work, but I suppose he will be
going back to work soon now that he has so far
improved but it is well he did not think so
seriously of coming out here so far as I know
for no matter what others think my impression
is that the ideas of people at home about
America are all a mistake __ you ask me how I
like this country and for my candid opinion as
to your coming out here Well to the first I
answer that I do not like it at all and to the
second I say that any person who can live at
home at all had better stay there for in this
country I can neither see comfort nor pleasure
You would have more benefit out of 5/- in the
old country than out of $5.00 here, and as a
proof of how much I think of this country I
tell you that as soon as I can raise my
passage back this country will mourn my loss
__ all you can earn no matter how one works
goes to pay the boarding mistress; but there
is one thing that I will say that this is a
good place for men who do manual labour and
who never feasted on anything better than
"Indian Buck" or a two eyed beef steak for he
will get his fill and good stuff at that (when
he gets any) but men such as clerks,
Book-keepers &c are not paid accordingly __
There is one thing certain that if I worked
half as hard at home (if it was only gathering
rags) as I have to do here it would be a good
deal better for me __ but of course if people
writing home won't tell the truth but will
give glowing accounts of everthing __ don't
believe a word of it for life here is not a
bit romantic __ it is painfully real __ of
course there may be some parts of it better
but I have to see them yet.
we have had a great fall of snow these last
two days and the weather is miserably cold
but of course one cannot expect anything else
at this season of the year and I tell you
when one of those blizzards comes it makes
you wish you were at the fireside __ People
here know what winter is and make preparation
for its approach for when it comes it comes
suddenly; but what makes the weather here so
unpleasant and unhealthy is the sudden change
__ one might go to bed and be so warm the
[that?] he could't (sic) sleep and before
morning all the clothes in the house wouldn't
put heat in him If you saw me now you
wouldn't say I was extra stout. I've come
down to fit my harness wonderfully The time I
went down South I lost over 50 pounds in six
weeks so that wasn't bad for a start but then
of course I'd been ill during that time and
got my back hurt by a fall from the gangway
of the steam Boat to the bottom of a [fuel?]
[flat?] but am glad to say am all right now
with the exception of a cold for the last ten
days or so and have not been working during
that time. I was working at the "Compressor"
that is the engine which manufactures the air
to drive the cutting machines in the mine the
work was indeed pretty hard and not much for
the job either but it was better than nothing
so I am out of a job at present but hope to
get an inside one for the winter very soon.
I have not seen any of the Wilson or Cherry
family since I came out here in fact any
persons whom I knew at home but I know a
young fellow comes from between Dungannon &
Benburb named John Carson his wife is
living with her own people somwhere round
there yet.
I think by this time (when you have read
this) you will be tired of this
uninteresting scrawl so must draw this to a
close with
Hoping you Lytle, Tom, Florrie, [N?]ana are
all well and with the request that you will
write me often if you can find time

Your affectionate brother

P.S. I send Florrie a specimen of writing to
show you Irish the good pensmen we
Yankees are.