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Title: Isabella Marshall, N.Y. to Andrew Marshall, Belfast.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FileAllen, Isabella/104
SenderAllen, Isabella & W. J. Campbell Allen
Sender Genderfemale-female
Sender Occupationhousewife-businessman
Sender Religionunknown
OriginNYC, USA
DestinationBelfast, N. Ireland
RecipientMarshall family
Recipient Gendermale-female
Relationshipdaughter and sister / son-in-law, brother-in-law
SourceD/1558/1/2/34: Presented by F.D. Campbell Allen, 15 London Road, Harrow-on-the-Hill, Middlesex, England.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, Northern Ireland.
Doc. No.9803624
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by LT, 27:03:98.
Word Count2246
TranscriptNew York, September 19th 1838

My Dear Sisters.
I suppose by the time this reaches
you you will both be settled at home. Alada painting
pictures from the sketches she has taken on the
Highlands whose by word [---?] to any lady you are a
pretty article to be presenting for the country in
such a way. I received Rosa's letter on Wednesday
evening on my return from Niagara and I say what a
treat it was. I have but the direction was in Alida's
handwriting but I was delighted to hear that she was
enjoying herself in Scotland. You dont [don't] say
anything about having written by the Packet of the
13th so I suppose seems not to expect her to bring
me any news. I suppose by the time the Great Western
has reached England and you have of our safe arrival
and intended town so I will begin at the beginning
and give you a sketch of our journey. We started on
Friday evening with Mr and Mrs Brown picked up Mr
Buchanan and his son - English going on the same way
and with Mr Maginnis made a [stained] The two girls
are very pleasant fellow travellers. The two seemed
[stained] and careful of self. The [-----?] a good
centred Welsh man and much information but always
goodhearted and the case of the [stained] people.
We all went on board the steamer going to Troy
150 miles up the Hudson. The [-----?]ing was dusty
and we saw little of the river but cared less as we
parted at the end of the day probably not to meet
again in America. From Troy we took the next crossing
the railway to Saratage Springs a first fashionable
resort in crossing for fashionable its waters are
considered finer than any in America, and equal to
[----- -----?] It is a very pretty village surrounded
with woods the streets are each side seeming to
terminate in a forest. The Hotels with the [------?]
of ours is closed they are large wooden buildings
with long surrounding vines or creeping hanging
[-------?] from pillar to pillar every thing was
comfortable and we remained there Sunday, went to
church and visited a pretty lake in the evening but
I am [stained] on our route and my grandest will you
afterwards the [stained] On Monday we took a stage
for Whitetrall 38 miles distant. The [stained] as
very easy and the miles good but oh Poz had you
[stained] over the roads, they are just made by the
ground being cleared for a certain width from grass
and trees and a place of wood marked on each side. No
stones laid down but when crossing a swamp trees are
laid across the entrancess filled with mud the first
part of the journey was comparatively easy but the
last seven miles were beyond my expectations we went
into holes and out of them no grand style and could
not help admiring the dexterity of the driver who
took us along in rapidity very few accidents happen
on the roads and the people in the country think
nothing of a few heights and hollows. We next morning
took the Steamer across the Champlion it is
the most beautifully finished boat I ever was
in a perfect babyhouse. She reached St John's the
next morning, took a railway to the prairie, there
got into a steamer and crossed the Mighty St
Lawrence to Montreal the weather up till then
had been oppressively warm the thermometer in
the shade at 75 but as soon as we entered
Canada it was cold and bleak the skies clear
and beautifully blue. Indeed I never saw it
equalled in my own country. We were very
much pleased with Montreal went searching for
furs and found to our surprise that all the
skins are sent to England, dressed and made up there
and sent back here, so that they are quite
if not more expensive in Canada than at home.
In New York they are very dear and as to
cromine it is scarcely to be procured so
Marg [Margaret?] will provide herself much more
cheaply at home On Friday evening we took
a steamboat again, and sailed down the river to
Quebec. I was disappointed in the scenery on
this part of the St. Lawrence the banks are flat
but very thickly inhabited and the width of the
stream in parts is immense. Quebec is beautifully
situated and is a most extraordinary looking place
quite unforgettable. Saturday was unfortunately a
pouring day the only wet one we had on our
travels. We visited the citadel however, and
had seen the town cathedral in the previous
evening. On Saturday night we went on board
again and steamed driving all Sunday
reaching Montreal on Monday morning just in
time to catch the stage that goes on the road to
Biagtoa. at the end of Lake Ontario. We heard
everywhere in Canada that disturbances are
expected on Lord Durham's departure and each
winter is likely to be a very unsettled one. All
seem vexed at the idea of his Lordships leaving.
For two days we steamed and staged alternatively
taking the stage where the rapids were too strong
and too rough. to be navigable. We slept on board
vessels at nights and boarded in them. The river is
much more beautiful as you sail up, numberless
islands wooded to the water's edge over its
surface make it very beautiful, villages and
houses all neat and thriving are along its
banks and the steaming of some very strong
rapids give an excitement to the sail. On Monday
morning we embarked on Lake Ontario the boat was
a very fine one strong and finely fitted up. Our
passage one of 24 hours to Lariston on the
Niagara river was very rough. The lake is like
the ocean we were frequently out of sights of
land and the waves on it must have been
tremendous for they struck the boat so as to
make her tremble from end to end. We were seasick
but what of that the morning took us to the Falls.
Now I wished I had had you all beside me as I stood
looking at the magnificent lane. My expectations were
far exceeded I could have conceived nothing so
grand so overpoweringly beautiful. We stopped on
the American side at the Cataract house from
which we could see the train hurrying to its
fall and hear the outward rush of the water.
The evening of our arrival we spent on the
American side seeing all the fine points and
the different falls in the detail. The last
sound I heard was the music of the water
and the same sound awakened me in the morning
Say you "how could you sleep at all near such
a [-----?]" alas travelling about so much
fatigues our bodies and in spite of ourselves
we must eat drink and sleep. Friday morning
was wet but it cleared and we took a stage
to the Liverpool two miles below the Falls on
our return we took the ferry boat to cross
to Canada; the boats like a Larne ferry
boat towed by one beam leaves the shore
scarcely ten yard from the American and not
a quarter of a mile from the great house shore
Fall, the water is amazingly calm and wears
a smooth surface to conceal the raging beneath
it was with fever and breathing I crept
into the boats, the spray came across us in
clouds and our crossing in safety so near the
cataracts seemed miraculous. We landed and walked to
table each stood at the edge of the tremendous
fall looked down below where it frothed and
foamed and threw a body of spray far higher than
the rocks over which it fell went down to the
entrance of the place where persons go
underneath the fall, saw six men dressed to
enter, returned to the ferry, crossed and then
bade adieu to a scene that I never expect to
be equalled. I would have encountered double the
seasickness and fatigue to see it it was truly
magnificent. From that we took a railway to
Buffalo thence a stage to D[--?]aster on
Sunday staged 63 miles to Auburn. From that
had railway and stage to [-----?]. On Tuesday
we visited the Newton falls which are perfectly
beautiful, the scenery is romantic and the
river takes 5 successive falls each one of them
about 5 times (or probably more) the size and
height of those on the Clyde. The day was
bright and warm and the spray formed into
beautiful rainbows we were all in good spirits
and I think it was the pleasantest day we had
on our excursion. William and I parted company
from our fellow travellers at Wica taking
the railway night train to Albany which place
we reached in time for the boat down the
Hudson. We had a glorious sail the river
is romantic and interesting, we devoured
[Poy's?] letter which was awaiting us and here
we are in good health and spirits in the
Carleton once more. We travelled 1600 miles
in less than three weeks saw what was to be seen and
enjoyed ourselves highly so you may think we
were not idle. On Monday week we talk of
starting for Augusta where we have received
an invitation for Mr Campbell to take up our
abode with him which we intend doing. I am
afraid we will for bother too great a tax on his
hospitality but William says not. This is a
pouring wet day. Yesterday I was shopping
with Miss Corbitt and assistance and with the
expection of buying a bonnet had everything
Frencg goods &c are much dearer that at home. And
now my papers has come to a close. What are you
all doing at Wellington Place I wish I could
take a peep at you, see you busy at your
occupations and say two or three words to you.
If before One O'clock tomorrow I have anything
to add I will cross a piece Now goodbye for the
present Give my love to my dear [----?] & [-----?]
Knowly John W.J. the Boys and all and believe that
I am everywhere your attached sis [sister?]

To all to whom these presents shall come
their son in law or brother in law (as the case
may be) sends greetings. So far as Isabella will
permit me to peruse her epistle general, I
perceive she has given you a brief sketch of
our journeying since we landed on the continent.
Our absence from New York must be our apology
for permitting two or three packets to sail without
any letters from us, but I am not sure that
where there are so many of you, or will be
ready to receive any excuse for a packet
leaving Liverpool without a commence catern
for us;- The advantage of crossing
the Atlantic by steam was finely illustrated to us,
(notwithstanding our comparatively
unfavourable passage) by the fact that Orpheus
which sailed from L'pool [Liverpool?] the day
before we left Bristol only arrived here last
Sunday, after we had travelled on this
'Continent' upwards of 12,000 miles. - I
can add nothing respecting our journey except
that Isabella has proved a much better traveller
than I anticipated: we had some sufficiently
fatiquing day's journey in the stages, but she
never complained and was always ready for the
following days occupation whatever it might be. -
Rosa will accept my thanks for her mention of my
mother: and I hope from what she says that the
old lady will be induced to go out more frequently
this winter than she has been in the habit of
doing [----?] when I am at home. I should be glad
to hear, what arrangements she has made with
respect to servants, and whether she has
concluded on heartburning herself until my
return with the helpful youth I left with
her. Unless I hear of these matters from some one
of you; she will take good care that I shall
not hear of any of her annoyances until I reach home
although if I heard [----?] I might have it in
my power [____?] distance to before them in some
degree. - One circumstance has been omitted I see
by my secretary and that is that at Buffalo a
town at the foot of Lake Erie, which has
sprung up within 23 years where no trace of
civilisation was to be found 30 years ago, we
stopped in a Hotel superior to nine tenths of the
houses in our largest towns in England or Ireland,
and that Mr. Brown & myself were in the evening
to a theatre which in point of elegance has no
equal at home out of London and where the orchestra
was very much superior to any thing I have ever
heard were in the Hawkins [-----?] Theatre in Dublin.
With regard to the music this is not merely my
own opinion but of others who were with me and have
seen the places I have mentioned. - Kindest
regards to all which of course includes Miss Knowles.
I imagine you will tell my mother that you have received
this epistle from us: and I remain most truly yours
W.J.C.A. [William John Campbell Allen?]