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Title: Maggie Black, Atlantic Ocean to Mr And Mrs. Hall, Armagh.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FileBlack, Maggie/15
SenderBlack, Maggie (n. Hall)
Sender Genderfemale
Sender Occupationhousewife
Sender Religionunknown
Originat sea on the Atlantic Ocean
DestinationLoughgall, Co. Armagh, N.Ireland
RecipientMr and Mrs Hall
Recipient Gendermale-female
SourceD 2401/13: Purchased From J. A. Gamble Esq., 44 Taunton Avenue, Belfast 15
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, Northern Ireland.
Doc. No.9311039
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogAction By Date Document added by C McK., 03:11:199
Word Count1564
TranscriptTo: Mr And Mrs. Hall,
Eden Cottage,
Loughall [Loughgall?],
County Armagh,

From: Maggie Black (nee Hall),
"Atlantic Ocean",
May 5 1890

Atlantic Ocean
Monday evg [evening?]
5th May 90 [1890?]

My Dear Dada & Mamma

This is the first day since Friday that I
have been able to be out of my bunk After
saying goodbye to you I felt awfully desolate
& forsaken for some time but had to bestir
myself to look after our boxes. I went on deck
for a few minutes but was glad to beat a hasty
retreat & turn into bed which I was not able
to leave until this morg [morning?]. I never
experienced anything like the sickness from
Friday evg [evening?] till Sunday evening &
after that such soreness of body I could not
have given the children the least assistance
had they been dying I believe _ I did not seem
to care if I had been thrown overboard!
Florrie Edna & Tom were sick for a while too
but not [seriously?] they were all right when
in bed Margaret was sick from Saturday & in all
my own sickness I could not help laughing at
her when she took turns at vommiting
[vomiting?] she would say "Thats another
overflow of the gall"!!! I am so thankful this
evg [evening?] that we are all better only
shaky & an "all gone" sort of feeling.
Nearly every person on board was sick this
was the first day there was a full attendance
at dinner & my first appearance at table the
stewards are very attentive to us & will bring
us anything at all we fancy poor Edna would say
to me (when she was at her worst & crying with
the pain of her head) I wish I had some of

Grandmas soda cake why did you not let her give
us some Florrie would say "I wish I had a drop of
Eden Cottage tea with the good milk in it".
The tea here seems to be drawn till it is quite
bitten. The stewardess has smuggled me a drop of
her own every day since we came on board but I
had no relish for anything except a cup of beef
tea she gives me about 11'o clock & a little
mug of gruel almost as thick as porridge every
night but its all I seem to care for up to the
present. However after another day or two I hope
to make up for lost time.
When lying so ill I could not help thinking such
a turn as I got would be awfully trying on poor
Annie but there are some got off with less
suffering than others. but I could not find
adjectives sufficiently expressive to describe
the pleasures of seasickness!!! I shall not wish
for a return of it for a while. They say one is
always the better of it but dear [----?] its
dearly bought -
The sea is beautifully calm to-day. I was on
deck twice M- [Mr?] Cowdy asked to see me on
Saturday evg [evening?] but I was in no
humour to see visitors.
You remember the lady & child who sat opposite
us in the tug coming down to Moville She is
going to New York to rejoin her husband who
has been there two years the little baby was
born three months after its papa left & she had
a little girl since she to is from Belfast &
seems very agreeable she is next berth but one
to us the children & the baby are friends already.
Tom occupies a berth with a friend of [Mr?]
Patterson from Coleraine he sent me over a fine
turkey egg & some butter biscuits, well buttered,
yesterday evening. I have not ventured on the
egg yet.
The greater part of the passengers are foreigners
could not make a word of what they say - you would
pity these poor steerage passengers if you could see
them, some lying on deck as sick as possible I
saw some of them feasting on raw herrings to-day &
then in crowds at the door begging for water!! &
in many cases refused. How they can exist is a
mystery - On Sunday there was a service at 11'o clock
but I fancy the attendance was small there is a party

of Scotch people in the cabin & they sing psalms &
hymns every evening there are all kinds if musical
insturments too so if people were in good health it
would be enjoyable but it tekes a good deal to lift ones
mind off home & old friends left behind. I am sure you &
Tom were very tried when we got home again after such a
week as you put in with me & my affairs but I trust you
shall be rewarded for all you have ever done for me &
We made a great mistake about our boxes. We should have
had one with what things we required in the way of changes
of linen &c &c one with eatables both not too large
as I have not been able to get at my large box yet it is
quite too large to get into our berth & whatever way
they packed and unpacked what small boxes & portmanteaus
I cannot put my fingers on anything I really want
they mixed clothing & eatables al [all?] thro' [through?]
but up till to-day I did not feel the need of
things as I had not undressed myself till last
night!! I could not bear to move Thursday. Did
not fell in any humour to write since Monday
had two three turns of sickness sea very rough
Tuesday & Wednesday - a great fog the foghorn
keeps blowing every five or ten minutes it cleared
off a little early this morning but is now thick
as ever we felt nervous last night owing to rough sea
& fog Tuesday night we had a concert in cabin songs
violin &c &c was to have another last night but
was postponed till to-night on account of a number
being sick I was in bed after tea its strange
how the heaving of the ship makes you feel like
"turning inside out" I was on deck for a while
this morning I believe we are just half way now.
I only wish we had landed its so tiresome!!
Mamma's condensed milk was not much use one
bottle was broken the day we came on board
& the other I opened yesterday & found quite
curdled. We get any milk we want both at
breakfast & tea, It & the sugar are left on
the table, of course it is thin there is meat at
every meal cold beef sausages & stewed steak for
breakfast roast beef mutton fowl & vegetables
for dinner & cold beef for tea, gruel for supper
& every day beef tea or soup & no scarcity of
anything the tea is wretched but they give coffee
too. I made some tea yesterday the stewardess
is very kind & gives us anything we like to

ask we have three courses every day at dinner
but one cannot enjoy it as at home Margaret does
justice to the good things provided since she
got over the sickness!!! We are quite friendly
with a lot of the cabin passengers. there are
only 9 saloon passengers Mr Cowdy among them.
That box I received at the station before
starting was the bottles for the cruet I
was getting from Gibson of Belfast he put
them in a large enough box at any rate 4
smell bottles!! I only opened to-day
thinking it was a present from someone -
Saturday was very ill with headache all day
yesterday last night & to-day in bed all the
time I fancy I won't take a sea voyage in a
hurry again! but if a person were well it
would be very pleasant. there were two concerts
this week & the people are all very friendly
with each other. we expect to be near New York
to-morrow I wish we had the the railway part of
the journey over. I hope Lytle will have a shake
down for us when we arrive for we'll require a
[rest?] Sunday went Church in the saloon Mr Cowdy
conducted the service the attendance was very
large you could not imagine the grandeur of the
saloon everything is gorgeous!! there is an organ
& piano & every other comfort the difference
between 1st & 2nd cabin is more marked than
between 2nd and steerage. There is certainly
a very marked difference & the saloon passengers
keep quite to themselves of course there are not
many of them. We have been disappointed that the
voyage has been so slow. I believe we are to land
to-morrow or tuesday morning. I want to finish this
lest I should not have an opportunity again.
I have been awfully troubled with headache these
days I hope it is not going to return to me
How has Annie been since we left? I fancy it is
months since I left home! I hope the time won't
seem so long in the future - a great many of
the passengers have enjoyed the time but they
have been well and healthy.
Now for this time I must close Hoping you Mamma
& all the others are quite well with much love
to all not forgetting Martha
I am your loving