W0728 TO MARGARETTE B. [LERNED] MCQUESTEN from her friend C.M. Eaton
Sep 12 1834
To: Margarette B. (Lerned) Mcquesten, Brockport, New York, [U.S.A.]
From: Hopkinton, New Hampshire, [U.S.A.]
Long neglected but still beloved Margarette, I could fill this sheet with apologies for thus neglecting to write or even answering your kind letter which has been so long demanding my attention. I could name many things which I think you would own as reasonable excuses, but cannot say so much as this, that I have found no time for the last few months to hold a little intercourse with my dear M. I truly feel that for my own part that I have deprived myself of much pleasure by this neglect. Think not dear M. that you have been forgotten. No! my earliest & dearest friend will never never be forgotten. I am often, very often with you in imagination as in days gone by, but alas! 'tis all imagination. Margarette is far away from the scenes of childhood & early friends, but I trust happy in her western home, & doubtless surround [sic] by those who are dear & blessed in the love & affection of a kind & devoted husband.
There have been some changes among us since you left. You probably have heard that Ellen Little is married. She is still in town, her hus' left in a few days after they were married, on a voyage to India, will be absent about a year. Mr. Greenleaf's family have been at Mrs. Littles through the summer, they left town yesterday. Elisa has gone with them to pass the winter. I passed four months in Boston very pleasantly returned the first of May. Uncle & Aunt Chandler with cousin Marie came up the first of July & have been with us until this week. The were very anxious that I should return with them, but M. thought not but as I had been there so lately. We have had a Miss Coolidge from the city staying with us a few weeks. She often reminded me of you, just about your size & complection [sic]. I used frequently to call her Margarette. I have felt very lonely since they left. Your Mother gave a party while they were in town, the first I believe she has given since you left H. Mrs. McAllaster was in town at the time, but still it seemed very different from what it used to, when your dear father was alive, & you at home. I could hardly refrain from weeping. This is indeed a changing world, one generation passes away & another takes its place. How soon it will be our turn to make room for others we know not.
There has been quite an alteration in Sister B's situation during the past year. Mr. S. has sold his farm & purchased the house & store formerly occupied by Esq. Darling. We find it very pleasant having her so near.
Mrs. Molinaux has been visiting her friends. She has a sweet little girl, nearly a year old. W. Littles wife has been very much out of health this summer, it is feared she will go into a decline they are both at Mrs. Littles. W. has been out of business nearly a year--rather discouraging for a young man with a family. E. Clark is expecting Capt. Hall in town next month she will then probably be married. Our young ladies seem much inclined to marry sea Capts. E. will make the third in little more than a year. Suppose we need not any of us expect to get married until there comes another into our good village. Dr. S. Stark is now spending a few weeks in town. He has come about to the conclusion to leave this section of the country & settle in N. Orleans. Geof. Estabrooks started last week for the south. You see our young gents are all about leaving N.E. at least a great number of them are.
Mrs. Flanders has gone a [sic] journey to visit her hus' friend in Vermont. She started last monday & expects to be absent two weeks. She would probably have written had she been at home. Her youngest little girl is very interresting [sic], quite as much so as any of the family. Catherine has not been very well this summer, but thinks her health improving she does seem as healthy as she used to. She has been out but very little this summer.
Our school flourishes finely this season, there [are?] 125 or 30 schollars [sic] in both apartments. We have new teachers in both apartments, E. Childs & Miss Adams from Charlestown. You see I take it for granted that you still feel an interrest [sic] in Hopkinton affairs. If your local attachments are as strong as mine, & I doubt not but that they are, you doubtless feel interrested [sic]. I had the pleasure a few weeks since of visiting the Shakers at C. there was a party of eight went over. We started about two & arrived at C. about sunset. Spent the night with them, visited their Garden, buildings &c in the morning were treated with a great deal of politeness, & had a very pleasant visit with them. Had not our party been so large we should have returned by the way of S. & made Mrs. McAllaster a visit. Cousin M. was desirous of visiting Miss P. Molonie. She roomed with her one term at Bradford.
Sat. 13th. Well dear Margarette I will cordially congratulate you on the [important?] piece of intelligence just communicated--that you are the mother of a son, another link is added to the chain that binds you to earth.1 Beware my dear M. of becoming too much attached. You doubtless feel that you have new responsibilities & duties to encounter. I feel as though I could not be denied the pleasure of seeing you & your little one.
I believe when you left H. your husband gave encouragement that he would visit H. in three years. Two thirds of that time has now expired, & in one short year I hope again to clasp that friendly hand, & hold sweet intercourse with my earliest & dearest friend. I say in one short year, but alas! how little do we know what may befall us in that time. There is so much uncertainty connected with the future, that we cannot promise ourselves any thing beyond that for we truly "know not what a day may bring forth." Do dear M. often remember me at the throne of grace. I have thought much of the privilidge [sic], which we are all in [possession?] of, & although friends are ever so far distant God is ready to hear our prayer, if we have a true spirit of devotion.
Much love to your husband, tell him I have not received the letter he promised me yet. May I not hope soon to receive a long letter from you both.
Yours in affection,
[Written up left side of page 1:] You will probably recollect Mr. Colby. Formerly in Esq. Darling's store--has been in Boston for the last two or three years. He is now going with the intention of locating in some part of the western country. Please give my love to [Mrs. Greeley?]--am very glad to hear that she likes Brockport.
[Written up left side of page 3:] Sister B says 'Give much love to Margarette, & tell her to kiss the dear boy for her', [sic] & also that her children are just as still & little trouble as ever. All she has to do is to [dunk?] them in the [swimming?] & she has no more trouble with them all day.
Mrs. Margarette B. McQuesten
Brockport, N. York
Mr. J. Colby
1 Margarette's son, Calvin Jr. was born August 15, 1834, and lived only 10 days. To learn more about Margarette Barker Lerned [McQuesten] please see W0609.