Victoria Park Road
My dear Alexander
18th June 1868
Here I am still here but you are most likely to hear that a week only might make a change in my residence, as apartments are ever uncertain, therefore continue to direct your letters and papers to Mr. H (?). I am wishing very much to hear from you.
Your dear father has been dead nearly 7 months and I have heard from you but once. You then very kindly responded to my unexpected wants for which I truly thank you and your dear partner, but dear Alexander, a letter from you more frequently would rejoice my heart in its solitude.
The business transactions of business have in a great degree subsided, consequently I have now time to reflect upon my great loss and the bereavement of your dear father. How is it that Walter does not write? Has he not one expression of sympathy for me? There are too many questions which might interest him, which I should feel as pleasure in answering. I wish for no concealment and if at my death there should be left beyond my needs, I should gladly have it distributed amongst all my sons and daughters. The Almighty disposer of events may think proper to prolong my life for years. In that case there wouldn't be much to leave if any, but should I be called away in the course of a short period, of course, I shall leave behind a few hundred pounds which at the present time is only in rents in my possession. I wish therefore to make a Will and to have my sons' approval of it as well as my daughters'.
I have indeed been brought to feel how much I needed the assistance of you both in matters of business which I understood but little about and dared not trust a stranger. Building Society business and Insurance, none of my relatives understood and if they did they were not upon the spot to help me. Still I have had assistance in other respects. Mr. Hopwood did kindly come to my aid in time of need. Sister Anne especially during the last weeks of your poor father's life and for at least a fortnight after his death, writing letters for me and looking into my business, which at that time my mind was quite unequal to that. I have been helped much and should have been more, had they understood the business or resided near me.
Do you receive any newspapers from me? I frequently send one. By this mail I shall send two. I have had several calls upon me from relatives recently, Mrs. Lestourgeon, Mr. & Mrs. Parks (Jane Auston that was), Uncle Walter, Sydney and his wife, Miss Manfred, Augusta Turner (Uncle Walter's daughter) who has an excellent situation in a wholesale house in the City.
I sent a letter the other day containing the account of the illness and death of poor Charles. He seemed to have been much beloved and I hope he is now in that "better land." He seemed to regret being called away just as he had found a happy home with his brother. He exclaimed "how hard it is." How little do we know of the future, therefore it behooves us the more to be prepared for it by the Grace of God - all other help is vain.
Your aunt Browne's daughter, Mrs. Lewis, has within the last 3 weeks lost her husband, leaving nine children, 3 of the former wife. I expect there is property left to keep them comfortably but so large a family must be a great responsibility. She resides at St. Alban's and I expect your aunt will go and live with her daughter as she wished it before her son-in-law's death.
The intelligence you sent us respecting the Holt family is making a great stir amongst the country folks; some of them are or have visited the place of the birth of our Ancestors in order to ascertain particulars. Would a letter from you to the party in America lead to anything? Your Uncle John and his family must be located somewhere and a great Uncle John who left his home soon after the marriage of my father, but the advertisement goes further back and it would be worse than folly to spend more than a few shillings without additional particulars.
Emily Auston has written to me to go and see her. If I should go, I will endeavor to search into the family history of my father's family. It is worth enquiry. Have you heard any more? I am told those things are got up in America by way of speculation.
I hope you and your dear wife are enjoying this beautiful weather. Your sisters have both invited me to visit them, but if I do I must leave an agent to collect the rents of the Cottages, which I do not relish. Still it might be beneficial to my health and spirits.
I must now write a few lines to dear Walter as it always vexes me if I cannot write to you both. You are both very dear to me as well as those you have chosen for your partners for life. May you have many, many years together and each of you enjoy an increase of happiness both temporal and Spiritual and at length have an entrance into that "better land" prepared for all who love our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. Farewell my dear Alexander and Andrea and believe that I am
Your affectionate mother