W0801 TO DR. CALVIN AND MARGARETTE [LERNED] MCQUESTEN from Hugh and Louisa [Lerned] McAllaster
Jul 15 1835
To: Dr. Calvin Margarette (Lerned) McQuesten, Brockport, New York, [U.S.A.]
From: Sandbornton Bridge, New Hampshire, [U.S.A.]
When I last wrote you I thought I could arrange my business so as to leave for your place this month but I find it impossible--Louisa I think would hardly stand the journey if it were possible. We have now come to the conclusion to spend 2 or 3 months at Hopkinton--during this time I may see you if I do not go east. The land speculation in Maine runs high in this section at present. Almost every one that have [sic] entered into it from this quarter have made their thousands & some their hundreds of thousands. Numbers of Mindells for one-boardmen from this town, Minot--Cassall--Upton--Galt--Stickney & many others from inner Hopkinton have earned and have made largely in their speculations.
I have quite an eastern fever accompanying the western--you may think the symptoms rather dangerous & a little of your good advice might have a tendancy [sic] to throw of [sic] at least one of them. I am inclind [sic] to think the eastern will subside as cold weather approaches & if it should the Western will seem high. I am now much engaged waiting my accounts & looking after poor debts. I do not [Hugh's portion of the letter continues on next page (p. 803)] succeed very well in collecting. I shall not be able to collect all my good paper before going west. I am determined to settle every account possible. I have about $1000 which I call doubtful worth perhaps 50 per ct--several of your poor debts remain unpaid, do tell me what to do. J. Smith; his is the largest & he is disposed to be a little slippery he says it is mostly paid. I shall leave my claim together with yours with Chr. for the present--he will continue with Folansby & Tilton for the present. They own a dairy a large business but I think without much propert [sic]. I must leave a space for my dear wife therefore draw to a close. Much love to your M. & yours.
I am with much respect
your affectionate brother
[Letter from wife Louisa (Lerned) McAllaster begins on page 802, and then continues at bottom of husband's letter on page 803.]
Wednesday P.M. 2 o'clock
Well Sister M., When I last wrote you I expected ere this or by this time, to be in Brockport--but now it seems Providence has otherwise determined--husband has just came [sic] in & said do scratch a line on the rest of the paper. I will with pleasure but must hurry as I expect stage every moment will come. This afternoon Dr. Hoyt, Atkinson, Chase, Hazelton & wives visit me, undoubtedly for the last time & tomorrow (Thursday) we commence cleaning house & preparing to move. Saturday our auction takes place. Husband will want a letter mailed for Hopkinton in one hour after you receive this. He has some thoughts of going east, but I am not for it--he wants to enter into this land speculation but I fear he cannot do much now, he ought to have gone in the Spring, besides I fear he will have to come east to settle his business. I know I am selfish, that I cannot endure the idea of his leaving me to go east or west--but shall submit & make myself contented--I expect to board with Mary while husband is absent & till I get able to go on west--hope it will be with me so that I can go on with Jonas--if husband goes soon to the west he will not go with me in Nov. for he must be here to attend Court in Dec.
Had a letter from Cate this morn said you wrote discouraging about her going & she had about given up the idea. Mary's girl has disappointed her & if she cannot find another I suppose she cannot have us there. I could go to B. were it not for the Grn. Mts. but fear I could not stand that jaunt. M. could you in hot weather, 3 children, & the 7th month of the year ride here? I guess not. I have however with my kind husband's help done my work alone for a week--yesterday prepared for company today & Esther D. washed--today Mrs. Clark [Glines?] is helping me. S. Jane said she should come back today if able. She is not well.
I know not what to write you. I had rather keep house this winter at Br. than board out, but cannot without a girl & you better be looking one out for me--husband is for the far West but will stay awhile at B. if he can let money (that is if he gets any) enough to live on. Should you like to go to Chicago or some of the western places with us if we should live & succeed as we now are hoping to do. Hugh says I never think of any thing but Dr. & Margarette when I think of the west but he thinks of new country, new society & [?] privations, but this I do not look at.
Received a letter from M. Jane & Caroline this morn--the Clerk in our Hinmans store has robbed him of a large amount & cleared out. M. Jane says her husband will go west & be our Clerk for a year, partner, or what not his time is most out at Nassau, talks of going to Fayette with Mrs. Platt. Folansby is doing wonders--he has a fine store, rooms to let, all finishing in style, store room made much larger and door closed & shelves there--his rum store back & an addition to it--lighten up every one for me to look at & mourn for the poor wives & mothers whose husbands are there--he has a piazza south side his house painted white, shed fence &c. Such tearing down & rebuilding I never saw the like before. Tilton is now moving his new barn against his house--tearing down his old one that sets near the road & so on. I am not interested enough to know his plans--but this I know he is pulling down his old ones to build greater. Mowes barn has been moved back & against the fence front of Mowes house & where it used to stand & Elliots is a fine flourishing garden--white fence--can see Judge Atkinson--very plain--yet I have no wish to stay. Do write--we have been looking for a letter as you wrote you you [sic] should write by same and soon.
Dr. did not say whether husband could do any thing at B. [Brockport] let money or speculate. Do tell him to write immediately as he will want to hear again before starting east or west. I am disappointed not going this month but my health is not sufficient. We shall box up what is not sold at auction for further orders & leave it here. Stage has come. Do write & accept this with love from your affectionate sister,
[Envelope wrapper:] Sandbornton Br.
N Y C July 15
Doct. Calvin McQuesten
Brockport, Monroe Co., New York
1 See W0889 for details about Major Hugh McAllaster and his family.
2 To learn more about Margarette Barker Lerned [McQuesten] please see W0609.