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Title: [Alexander Patterson?], Farmington, to "Dear Robt."
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FilePatterson, Alexander/33
SenderPatterson, Alexander
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationfarmer
Sender Religionunknown
OriginFarmington, Canada?
Recipient Gendermale
SourceDonated by Mr & Mrs S. V. Thompson, 4 Grove Park, Lenzie, Glasgow, G66 5AH
ArchiveThe Ulster American Folk Park, Omagh
Doc. No.9602154
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by LT, 29:02:96.
Word Count1088
TranscriptFarmington Augt. 22nd 1893

Dear Robt. [Robert?] tho [though?] I think of your last
two or three letters, some expressions therein
respecting your failing vigor and
activity stir & urge me to write, esp [especially?]
being on the world's brink myself
and with so many reminders in
memory of friends - wherever I've been
dropping out without notice, all seem
to say "Defer no longer" you may, or
may not remember how I told you
long ago how the news of my good
friend and brother in law's death
(Mr. Alex. [Alexander?] Hall) surprised and filled
me with regret on account of an
unanswered letter of his lying in
the house - I could record instances by
the score here & in Ireland of parting
from friends without more than goodby [goodbye?] unconscious
that the parting was final - I can hardly say
less - so far as health is concerned than that
I was never freer from disease of any
type than I am at present - This is
noticed by my neighbors so much that
I am frequently told, "You are an exception"
and sometimes - "You are always well"
Yet none of these things give me any
confidence in the future - I think of
a sermon the Dean used to give us
now and then - John baptized it - "The
contingencies" - It had one forcible truth
namely "that death cannot be far from
any one of us" and though some 60 yrs [years?]
must have passed since I heard it, yet
the voice, the place and surroundings
seem all vivid today - I am still presuming
that we, three of his hearers still
remain - I can hardly think of another
except (possibly) Mrs. Brown - I suppose
of the grandchildren of John Patterson
it is not likely any remain save ourselves,
Aleck of Ballymena and Dorothy
his sister, and of the grandchildren
of Robt. [Robert?] Kennedy, perhaps John K. Addison
and some of his sister's and my fathers
unbroken family - here the name's of Jas. [James?]
Scott and John Bicket are to far in
advance that we seem pigmies in comparison,
and one of the late papers
recorded not the death but the life of a
woman in Ireland of 118 y'rs [year's], familiar
with the events of 98, sings a good song &
seems like one the reaper had forgotten
Lest I should forget I here acknowledge
the rect [receipt?] of the book "Ulster in 98"
- I am apt to carry my letters to the office unsealed
so that I might give notice of anything
I might receive, but I had neglected the
precaution in that case when I recd. [received?] the box
I expected the "Blackreds" more noticed
in it - I believe all governments as
well as all religious denominations,
when scrutinized have more or less
to be ashamed of - The capture of the
Negro Hut, Burns, under the fugitive
Slave law, in Boston was sufficient
to prevent any humane man from
ever voluntarily becoming a citizen
of the U.S. and surely enough to stop
the mouths of fourth of July speechmakers
when sprouting "the land of the free"
Reading of the head of poor Munro or
any countenance "Made in the image
of God", stuck on the spike of the
public Market house, the thoughts
turn backward to the day's of Ahab
rather than to England, less than 110 y'rs [year's?]
ago - "Tell it not in Gath" - We have
had, perhaps the severest drouht [drought?] that
has occurred in my experience here -
We got a good rain Saturday, and then
Sunday night and Monday and hope
the drouth [drought?] is over - The hay crop was
fairly good, but the milk business
is got so enormous here that cow fodder
oat and barley fodder are raised
largely at a later period of summer
James is always strong in these and
intended to have a silo in which
to save the fodder green all winter
but instead of the towering crops of past
years it would remind you of the year
the Irish often ask me about when "they pulled
the oats" - No Silo will be needed this
season - I started a letter to John the
2nd of this month - Have heard nothing
since from that quarter except some slips
thro the papers, all of which had me to
look for tidings of a life closed in a
later generation, at no far distant date
there is no calamitous tidings at this
date in my family - We expect a visit from my son
John Sept. 5th with his wife, three sons
and one daughter and Sarah who
has spent so far of the summer with
them - They will probably spend a week
here, then he intends to see the World's fair
& she with the children will visit her
own people in New Jersey - I may have
forgotten something I would like to
say but while old people live largely
in the past it is no reason why they
should not anticipate the future
for myself when my thoughts ventured
look similar to the look the greatest
tinker ever England saw took after
his two pilgrims, and having done so
wished himself among them, there seems
to be so little to regret at leaving this
world of toil, disappointment and death
that I too, unworthy, vile and sinful
could withal wish myself among them
and among the earliest of the dead in my
connexion [connection?] I think of my own Mother
Long year's ago it was impressed on
my mind that in this "Mysterious way
in which God performs his wonder" Mother's
prayers had much to do, and a letter from
Aunt Halliday the day of father's funeral
confirmed my opinion - I trust I have others
shut in by the same golden gate - I have
children there grandchildren there
and among all the traps & by ways in
Bunyan's wonderful book none has oftener
set me straight than Christian's bold
resolve to open the door of [doubting?]
castle by the key of promise, which, thank
the good Lord is potent today to force
back the hold of any lock in [Doubting]
Castle Oh spread thy covering wings around
till all wanderings cease - And at our
Father's lov'd [loved?] abode - Our souls arrive in peace
Please spend 5 cts [cents?] on this & send to John
he is always urging me to write
A. P. [Alexander Patterson?]