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Title: McIlrath, James L to McIlrath family, 1875
CollectionThe McIlrath Letters: A family history in letters from New Zealand to Ireland (1860-1915) [Bassett, McKee et al.]
SenderMcIlrath, James L
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationfarmer
Sender Religionunknown
OriginSouthbridge, Canterbury, New Zealand
DestinationKillinchy, Co. Down, Northern Ireland
RecipientMcIlrath family
Recipient Gendermale
Doc. No.
Partial Date
Doc. Type
Word Count389
Genrereflection on time, church, photographs, family
January 31st 1875

Father, Mother & Brothers
I now write to let you know that we are all well (thanks be to the
giver of all good). Hope you are all well and that the year 1875 may
be so enjoyed and spent and that blessings may be abundantly received
and gratefully acknowledged so that when it has passed away we may
look back upon it with pleasure and not regret.
Year by year rolls on Time cannot be flattered to stay a little
longer, but this we can do, we may use it to advantage to ourselves
here, and more so with advantage to ourselves in the great hereafter.
You may think that I have turned Methodist, no I am as sound a
Unitarian as when I left Killinchy although I never heard a Unitarian
sermon since we have a very eloquent little Presbyterian clergyman
here but I must confess that I cannot believe all he says, it is a
bold assertion for I unlearned to make against it may be the Lords
annointed possessed of talent and learning but conscience must be
I received the likeness of Father and Mother and again that
of you William, Mrs also, boy and girl. You Father I would not have
known but I should have you Mother Time does not seem to have
changed you so much You William I would not have known either
and as for your Mrs I may have seen her at home but not that I am
aware of the boy and girl tells tales no wonder that all of us should
look different when another generation is taking our place. I enclose
my own and Mrs and I suppose you will find that time has changed
me much. I will send you some of the family first opportunity. I could not take them so far to be taken we have now four, John,
Jane, William and Robert.
I do not know Father and Mother if you have got an easy cart to go
out in but next time I write I will send you a post office order for what
will buy one.
I should like to see the likeness of John, Mrs and Family I hope they
are well. Hoping this will find you all in good health I am your obed.
J L McIlrath