W1004 TO DR. CALVIN MCQUESTEN From Mrs Louisa Lerned McAllaster.
Jan 8 1840
To: Dr. Calvin McQuesten Hamilton Upper Canada
From: Louisa Lerned McAllaster Concord New Hampshire
Concord January 8th 1840
My Dear Sister,
When I gave you a parting kifs [sic] at Mr. Gilmores in Bedford, I intended to answer your promised letter as soon as it should reach me- How different from my anticipation has been the result- After you had fairly set out with your son & brother. So I ran into Mrs. Gilmore, but my heart seemed ready to burst & I could not stay, went back to the Deason's & in spite of their entreaties I packed up for home, all ready, with bonnet & went to the door, when stage came along, but Mrs. McQuesten put her hand on my mouth with her face pale as a ghost said "I beg. Dont [sic] go!" My heart misgave me, I could not speak, she said "Providence interfered" or I should have gone- the stageman stopped however & left a book "Woman as she should be" it was for you, she had sent to Joshua for it, but it came a day too late, I was sorry- Next day Margarette carried me over to Uncle McAllaster's- denied there & at 7 took tea in my kitchen, very happy to see home and thankful you had started in such good company- My excitement, journey, & stairs, the next week brought on my complaint I had when you was [sic] here. I kept about a week, then gave up, but did not send for a physician till unable to rise without fainting, then was very violently seized with a hemorrhage that for several days I was not moved. Jane Marse took care of me one week, then Mary left her family without a girl, came down with her bake & staid [sic] the second week, very kind indeed. I was then able to sit up two hours, then Cath, came down & staid [sic] about two weeks and was obliged with L Jane's help to do the work for Eliza was taken sick & went home. Cath. took a severe cold and was almost sick after her return home for two months I could not sit up all day nor go about, but through the goodnefs [sic] of my Heavenly Father I am now well, though can bear no hardship- first time going out to meeting was a week ago. Alfred was taken with Whooping Cough very bad the third week of my illnefs [sic] he slept in partner with Jane & any be in setting move his cough continued to grow worse, till first of December think was a lung fever, inflammation of bowels & throat. But by the goodnefs [sic] of God towards us he has spared his life & he is now getting better fast, a good appetite & able to run round the room- Husband carried him down in kitchen today to dine with us- He is very poor indeed- Now sister, I am without help, Eliza left last week without a tear of regret on our part, said she was going to Boston, she never altered but for the morne, an eye servant indeed- I now expect Cath or Hannah to stay awhile- & hire my hard work done, if they see fit to disappoint me shall have a girl-
Margarette, I think I never had such feelings as I now experience- The goodnefs [sic] of God has been so great towards us, I have truly felt what the Psalmist so beautifully exprefsed [sic]. I love the Lord because he hath heard my voice so, your letter dear sis, was truly gratifying to my ears though unable to hear its contents till the third day after its reception- yet I felt such strong confidence that you would be carried through well & your lovely boy that to hear of Sister Marg's grieving and doubting distrefs'd [sic] me- Yea, my faith was so strong that I felt your babbage [sic] would be found- I felt that God had thus far blefs'd [sic] you and would carry you through- Do be grateful for his preserving goodnefs [sic] often remember it like the prophets of old calling to remembrance the goodnefs [sic] of God towards his chosen people- I am struck with the frequent repition [sic] of this, in the Old Testament how pathetically Jeremiah describes it is Solomon after the temple was consecrated- this winter is really thus far rendered very pleasant, by a new society in our Church called the South Sewing Circle, have met twice, stay at tea, gentlemen come at 8 then work is laid aside- there over 100 at Mrs. Fletchers 70 ladies, about 70 at my house- all sorts work, fancy rug work, in fast all kinds- we meet every other Tuesday & find a ready sale for what we calculate to do. I wish you could be here to join us- the new Episcopal Church was consecrated New Years day- & Mr. [Linbraet?] instituted Pastor of the parish the second day. I did not go out, have not seen it since you & I walked together up Park Crest- Have not called any where since you left for W park by eastern Canada- Christmas day we rode up to see Mary a few hours as Alfred was recruiting a little- No alteration in Catharine, the same as ever, knows nothing of her sicknefs [sic] & appears to think lefs [sic]- saw a letter she had received from you, very happy to hear you was mistrefs [sic] of the house & felt a little envy at the mention of the brick cottage I long to be a neighbor of yours- Cath. scolded about your not paying Mother more money, said you never gave but 15/ for shoes & quilting shirt & there was batting & so on- scolded about the Doctor not paying his annuity said you promised to- Husband pd [paid] that to Mother to satisfy them, they think you left money with husband to pay all you owed them- you said in your letter to us "take of 10 what I owe you, & one for mother as I owe her 50 cts on shoes & Elizabeth 12 cts for steel" they insist upon it that it means another dollar, beside the one mentioned- They are a hard sister & mother & brother to get along with the story was in the first place they should see Dr. [?] & attach the land on which Whitehern stood & that would plague him, but I guefs [sic] now their [sic] fine and rage at you & Dr. for your hasty exit, is about subsided- hope it will not break out again. Edward told Dr. J. Colby (who has settled here) in my hearing "that he should go off in Spring he had some businefs [sic] to attend to, settling the will, & should probably collect &c. in February" then thought of me & turned it off with a good game- M. late has finished her ottoman, but not till 3rd day of January, it is very rich, he is now at home helping do house work. L. Jane at Mifs [sic] Kirkwoods working the pantalets you so kindly gave her- if you will find a way that some of their work can reach you, they shall work you something- some little work when you say you need- my work of that kind is all ready & Dr. Gaye still thinks with care that I shall go through the winter. I wanted to say to you before you left that I was the same, as when you visited Mrs Hutchins though with all my weaknefs [sic] & lofs [sic] of blood from veins and sicknefs [sic] I am not o/ [sic] such was not my situation could hardly be contented to stay here, notwithstanding all the privileges that should be teasing to go to Canada- Husband says he is not doing much here- can he do better at Canada? Had a letter last week from Caroline she has experienced religion Margaret has been at the point of death is now better- Martha Jane the widow Hinman has married a lawyer in Ohio the second time seeing him, is very happy- Alfred has often said during his sicknefs [sic] he loved Calvin & indeed he does love him the best of any one except his own family- And indeed we all loved the little fellow- & say brother Dr. dont [sic] you love him too? Mrs. Clement felt very bad that you did not visit her said she expected you & Dr. would- Edgar S. Pilton has been sick ever since we heard about him is able now to sit up an hour- hope he will see himself & repent of his wickednefs [sic]- his wife has been very sick indeed, the way of the trampled poor is hard- H. Mary Pilton is at the point of death- Ridge Attison has faded his property sold at auction, bid off for him again- expect his wife just trouble & sorrow- We have had snow enough & very severe storms indeed as you have doubtlefs [sic] seen by papers- say have you any & do send us a [?] prefer if such can be the case & we will return one occasionally- Husband sent your letter immediately to Bedford that they might hear of your welfare-
Yours is in Love Louise1-
[Note on envelope from Hugh McAllaster to his brother-in-law Calvin McQuesten]
Wife has left one corner for me to fill I would just say to the last that the legacy to the R.W. is not settled yet- The small sum due Ms. Lerned on our land for the last two years I have paid- The reason of my not paying as usual I supposed that it would be so sensational for both parties to include it with Edward account & adjust the sum on settlemt [sic] with him- I will pay hereafter as usual- I have not see Austin since your wife left- no one to share [?] dull- mercy [?]- much love to your wife & my dear son-do not let him forget his over father.
[Continued on first page of letter]
Mrs green is start some just another Mrs Green better- We have a new secretary, wish us joy- have to [?] Calvin & ill- Do tell me what occurred in the [?] so laughable-
[Address on Cover]
Doct. Calvin McQuesten
Hamilton, Upper Canada
1 For more on Louisa Lerned McAllaster and her husband Hugh see W0889.
2 To learn more about Margarette Barker Lerned [McQuesten] please see W0609.