430 Hackney Road
March 10, 1865
My dear Alexander,
Here I am in the "old house at home" - not however what you would call the old house, but seeing the old folks have lived here 10 or 12 years, it has become to us the "old home". Papa and Mama look very well; they seem to have weathered the winter better than many, for it has been a very severe season.
What bad fellows you both are. I shall take upon myself to scold you. Why don't you write to a body & tell of your welfare? It is bad enough to have you all that way off, but then not to get a letter but once in three or four years is worse still.
How are you & Andrea getting along? Is there any prospect of increasing your family? I have been expecting to hear of such an event month after month. My youngest darling is five years old. I hope you have seen her likeness by this time as I sent one to Walter some time ago & have one for you at home & will send it as soon as I get back. How I wish I could show them all to you, but that event seems so far off, I can't even fancy it. However, if you & Andrea should not follow Walter's example & have a large family about you, you have the chance to visit Europe before many years have passed.
Oh, that horrid war! When will it end? We lookers-on in Europe should rejoice to see it end tomorrow & would ring all the bells in Old England. How can you be so blind as to join the hue and cry against your native land? We have nothing to do with the sending out of Alabamas. If men for gain smuggle out vessels as they have done & will do on false pretences, how can we help that? Old England has not maintained a false neutrality, but a true one, whatever the Americans may say. I don't like to hear my brothers join in the outcry against England. The poor slaves will gain their liberty, I believe, whatever may be the end of the war & in that I & all England will rejoice, tho' we shall be sorry to see the South subdued & you Americans able to brag & boast & carry the victory over all the world. However, One rules over all the world, & He will say to America "thus far shalt thou go but no farther".
I am now going off to the Hopwoods', so I must close. I shall write you more at length when I get home.
With love to yourself, Andrea, Walter & his wife & children, believe me, dear Alex
Your affectionate sister