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Title: Stewart, Frances to Waller, Maria, 1850
CollectionRevisiting Our Forest Home, The immigrant letters of Frances Stewart [J. L. Aoki]
SenderStewart, Frances
Sender Genderfemale
Sender Occupationhousewife
Sender Religionunknown
OriginDouro Township, Newcsatle District, Upper Canada
RecipientWaller, Maria
Recipient Genderfemale
Doc. No.
Partial Date
Doc. Type
Word Count1100
Genrenews, family life
Transcript1850: November 1526

To "Aunt Mother," Ireland
Auburn 15 Nov'r 1850

My dearly loved Aunt Mother
About ten days ago I received your letters, always welcome, & most
thankful am I to find a continuation of pleasing accounts of your health
& happiness.... How perceptibly I have felt the comfort of this since my
dear sons have been separated from me. When their dear Papa was here
he never could bear the thought of their leaving home & he arranged
so that each should have a farm ready & near this where each sh'd commence
for themselves at 21. But his plans all ended with his life, and I am
decidedly of opinion that it is better for young men to go a little into the world & feel their way thro' life. It shews them what life is and teaches them how to be independent.
My dear boys had never been from home till last summer & I trust
it has not injured them. Poor dear Frank has not succeeded so prosperously
as John. He took a wrong direction at first & went to some people
merely to see them "en passant" but they advised him to stay there
instead of going nearer to where John was & he found they were not his
best advisers. He has been now more than two months out of employment,
not earning anything & forced into some expense by illness. He
had a tedious & debilitating complaint, a sort of aguish fever & when I
heard last he was weak & had caught a bad cold which gave him a cough
& pain in his chest. But as he has always been very healthy 1 hope with
common care & prudence he may soon be well. He had some prospect
of employment as teacher in a school which he seemed inclined to take
up whenever his health should permit. He was offered £6-5-0 per month
which w'd be £75 a year but he w'd only take it for the winter months, I
suppose as he w'd like some more active employment for a permanent
occupation. I wrote to beg he would come home for the winter but he
could not. He is determined not to come till he has some money to begin
in earnest at his own farm. He seems a good deal cast down by his illness
& idleness but I hope he is by this time better in every way. George has completed the job in which he was engaged & has got
safe back to Toronto for which I am most thankful as I was excessively
uneasy at his having the dangerous voyage on Lake Huron to undertake at
this tempestuous time of year. However, in this Providence guided them
for the wind proved contrary & the danger was so evident that the party
determined to travel by land tho' a most fatiguing & difficult matter &
they walked through the woods for four days & carried all their luggage
on their backs to Goderich & there took waggons to Hamilton. I heard
very seldom from my loved boy for the last two months. It was so difficult
to have letters conveyed & the last interval was so long that I became very
uneasy. However, at last came a hurried & short letter from Toronto saying
he had at last reached it in safety tho' much wearied & all his clothes worn to rags. I have not heard since but he had some thoughts of remaining in Toronto for the winter & pursuing his studies under his friend Flemings
direction as he has now opened an office there & will take pupils. This
will I trust prove advantageous to George but he had not made any agreement
with Fleming so I don't know anything of terms &c &c or how he is
to earn enough to support him there but I expect another letter soon &
thank God I shall now be able to assist him myself if he requires it.
I wish to help on all my sons as long as I am permitted to be with
them & give them every advantage that I can in education. How thankful
I am that I shall I hope have the means in my power if I live a few
years longer. Oh yes I have much to be thankful for tho' I do sometimes
give way to weakness when perplexities overcome me. For a woman is a
very helpless creature in this world & I have been so completely unaccustomed to acting for myself in any way or degree for the last 34 years of my life & particularly after I became subject to asthma that now I really am ignorant of everything & become bewildered & constantly forget things which ought to be done, always having had those with me who could
think & act for me much better than I could for myself & now I miss the
assistance of my children so much tho' indeed they are always helping
me as much as they can.... And now my dearest Aunt, with love to every
member of your family absent & present, I am your ever affect' child

F. Stewart
forgive great haste
[Thefollowing text is located on one sheet loosely inserted in the above letter]
Thank you my dear & loved Aunt for getting me the little books & Tracts
you said you were going to send me in the Box. I do give many of those
you send & lend many. I have let Hugh Whites sermons to several &
Stevensons on the 22d Psalm.
I wish very much to have all the works of Rev'd H. Blunt. Aunt Sutton
sent me his lectures on Abraham & I have his lectures on the [ ]. I should
like his lectures on St. Paul & St. Peter & the life of Christ if you could get them cheap second hand & pay for them out of my money dear Aunt. I
have no time as I have had 50 interruptions.
I would write the remainder of my Cobourg visit if I had time but I
forget where I stopped. I am ashamed to send such a useless uninteresting
scrawl, indeed my own Aunt you must employ Maria to read this to
you for it is not fit for your eyes.
Give my love to dear kind James & to my Athboy brother & sister & to
all my Rockfietd darlings & all old friends who remember or care for me.
Ever your affect' child