W0659 TO MARGARETTE B.[LERNED] MCQUESTEN from her sister Mrs. Mary [Lerned] Flanders
Apr 7 1833
To: Mrs. Dr. Calvin McQuesten [Margarette B. Lerned] Brockport, New York
From: Hopkinton, New Hampshire
My dear sister Margarette,
We received a letter from Sandbornton, two days since, stating that we had abundance of news in store for us. Mr. Bartlett was there from Brockport, and would be at Concord Monday the 15th. Hugh writes that he shall be here the 12th and 13th to transact business, and will probably meet Mr. B. on his return. Louisa had then gone to distribute your letters through the village. I have sent for her to come over with Hugh.
I have a dear little daughter born the first morning in March, weighed 7 3/4 lbs. She now weighs 11 lbs. I have named her Martha Jane. I think she is a little beauty. It is said she looks very much like her mother! My health is perfectly good, and my babe is well and quiet. All the children grow like weeds. Often speak of their Aunt, in New York.
I have kept them at home this winter. If we have a good town school this summer, I think I shall send them to it. It is uncertain who will keep it. Doct. Gregg is sole committee, has been to see Rhoda, but she had engaged the school at Hills Bridge. Lucy Blanchard's health is about the same as usual, she would like to take a small school, to employ her mind (you know she is generally low spirited) if she could get a room. To pay 9 dolls. for three children's six months schooling, is more than we can afford, and I got tired of the bargain of letting a schoolroom last summer. Very likely she can obtain one some where in the neighborhood.
Doct. G. delivered a discourse on Temperance, the other evening, down on the Jewett road. I understood it was very good. He is our family physician. I like him much.
Rhoda has been with me 8 weeks, will stay a little longer. Martha keeps house where she used to. Horace is going in to Mr. Osgood's W.I. Goods store at Concord. Mr. Bartlett who bought their farm has moved there. Mother George and her husband have made me a visit, staid a week. She came in a lucky time the last day of February. I think she has made out well, in marrying a likely man. Margarette and Timothy by invitation visited W. and M.A. Curtis yesterday. A fine time. The prayer meeting was here last week. Your friends enquired for you. Mr. Chase in particular.
Hannah has just been in, says it is her birth day. Catharine has been in to-day, just received a letter from Jonas. She would not let me read but a part of it. Has now gone to Henniker with Jacob Berry in pursuit of a girl. He is quite attentive, gallanting her and E. Wilkins round the street. I have not spoken to any of Mr. Bailey's family since you went away. He has offered to play upon a double bass Viol in Church if they will procure one. I think it probable we shall have one in a few weeks, as Judge Harvey and Mr. Curtis offered to foot the bill. The singing the same as ever in Church. Mr. Chase has had a call to preach at Hills bridge 1/4 of the time for $100. per year (as Mr. Cavenoe has removed to Somersworth). He has accepted. The Baptist minister, Mr. Foss, was installed last week. They had a three days meeting. Stephen Blanchard rose for prayers. Mr. Foss lives in one part of the three story house. Widow Lyman from Warner in the other. Mr. Hatch's family still here. He is going into Vermont this summer to see what he can do, has heard of one or two openings there. They have no regular preaching in that society. Mr. Lancaster from Gilmanton, who married Miss Lemist, has been preaching here. Was liked very much but the people of G. would not give him up.
Caroline Currier has a Son. Widow Brown was at Lowell at the time. Clara Leach was married last Sabbath to Capt Chase. Margarett Story is married to Samuel Adams.
I write, just as though I was talking, run from one thing to another. My mind goes faster than my quill. I suppose you recollect we heard S. Giddings was married to a Mr. Hewens, portrait painter. They spent two weeks at Mr. Harvey's. Are now in Concord boarding out. He has employment there. Sarah has a pair of twins, one of each kind. 10 days old. John Estabrooks family board out. They have given up the idea of moving to N. York City.
The Academy is just the same as ever. I believe there were 40 or 50 scholars attended this winter. Miss Knight is not coming again. Is going to attend to her studies. Miss Everett from N. London, formerly a scholar here, will be Preceptress this season. Mr. Colby boards at Mr. Chandlers yet. Mr. Josiah Knowlton lives in Mr. Carletons house, and takes boarders. You recollect then they attend Church. She was one of Capt. Smith's daughters, quite dressy. Emery Smith preached at the Baptist meeting house the other eve. He is going to be a minister. Charlotte brought in her work the other day--took dinner with me. We had a real good time, talking of "days long since gone bye." said she had written to you. I dont know but she will take the summer school.
I dont know what Mother will do with Edward, have heard she was trying to get him in a store in Boston. Have not heard any bad capers of him this some time past. Catharine is very [tippy?]. She has worn a Leghorn trimmed with Green, Father's cloak, trimmed with velvet and buttons, sometimes walks to Church arm in arm with Jac. Berry, some times with Mr. Burns (a gentleman boarding with Mother). Quite a Miss for Gallants I think.--You know She and I dont think much alike therefore we are rather distant. We call on each other, occasionally and that is all. I wish she would not be so vain--think so much of the body. A new pair of handsome earrings--Gold Chain, and 5 finger rings on at a time. I hope and pray I may see the evil of it, and never bring my children up so. Lucy Ann is my favorite. So affectionate.
Mother wears her new [Circassian?], Father bought just before he was taken sick. Probaby you remember Catharine was rather stingy in giving you some red Calico to repair your gown for fear she should not have enough but there was a plenty for her and Elisabeth.
I saw the Cream pitcher the other day that belonged to your Coffee set. You never answered my letter that I wrote in January dated 16th. Did any of your crockery get broken, Haven't you sent for your bedstead by Mr. B. I should think it would be a good opportunity. I expect a good long letter by Hugh. Mr. Berry is now preparing to move to Utica, N.Y. Jacob has come to help them on. We shall know when they start. L. Stanwood gave a great party in February. Gave out 120 cards, written thus on one side "Mr. and Mrs. Flanders present." On the other side "Mr. and Mrs. Stanwood at Home, Wednesday Eve, 6 oclock February 27th." The company all stood round a long table and partook of a collation, similar to Judge Harriss'[sic]. I presume Louisa told you all about it. I did not attend, as I was at home myself, the next evening. Mrs. W. Little's health is very good at present. Hamilton, I hear, is to be married next month. Thus you see, that new actors are daily coming on the stage, and the old ones dropping off. Not many years before it will so with us, when we are on the decline of life, our children will fill our places. You recollect a sentence Father used to read in Cumberland "Behold how soon Nature recruits her strength, The ranks are full, Where the oak fell, the living acorns sprout:" &c.
Sabbath Eve, 14th. Brother Hugh has just run in to see Mother. Daniel has gone to a prayer meeting, my little children all asleep, every thing in order to finish my letter, but a miserable pen. (Hugh has come he may mend it) Margarette, words are inadequate to express my feelings when Hugh arrived Thursday evening, alone, by stage. I strongly expected Louisa. I was disappointed there: and then your letters, which I anticipated. I had counted the days and hours after Hugh wrote he was coming over, would bring letters &c. Not even doubting, but that we should all receive a good long diary, and not one word did we have, except the reading of Louisa's letters (that was better than nothing). I gave Mary Currier and Charlotte notice, to have them ready for answering--M. said she certainly should, if you wrote to her. C. was in here yesterday, sent love, hoped you would write soon. You never have acknowledged the receipt of my letter, dont know as you ever received it. Charlotte has taken the school in Henniker village. I called down to Mrs. Stanleys and Stanwood's yesterday. The preceptor
and Mary Ann were seated alone in the setting room, quite [budge?]. Mrs. S. and Jane the same as ever, enquire very affectionately for you. Louisa quite smart, no girl tho' in pursuit of one. Solon boards with them, and tends store for Joseph. Amanda is still in town. Judge Green is going to carry her on to Hartford Connecticut when the ways are settled. They board with Miss Judkins.
I have been to Church to day, for the first time since Christmas, had a good sermon and good singing. Have you got any plants this season? I dont know but I ought to make apology for what I have written with respect to Catharine. I dont know as she means any thing at all criminal, or any worse than we used to be, still I think she is too lofty, and vain, says she feels above Hopkinton folks &c--fond of gentleman's society, but there ought to be great allowance made on account of her age, and you know she is pretty much her own her mistress. I should not care if she did not slander Daniel and I so much, I presume she thinks she is on much higher ground than we are, but I doubt it.
Mother is very steady and does well I believe, tho' I have not been in there but once these two months. I am pretty well convinced, what you will say on the receipt of this, that is "How different Sister Mary writes, from sister Elisa. Her letters are filled with real good sentiment, while Mary's are nothing but trash." I suppose you would like to hear all the news from Hopkinton, however trifling, and for any thing farther as to letter writing, you need not expect it from me. My mind is so engrossed and my hands so occupied with domestic affairs that I find but little time for composition, and when I write it must be within sound and sight of "the smiling Cherub." Therefore pray excuse, burn, and say nothing about it. Elisa Little is still at Boston, expected home soon. Mr. Darling has moved his store of goods into the west end of the Wiggin house. His family the east end, all in order--no one occupies the old store at the corner. Ben Felch is married to Lydia Hoyt. Mary Stark has taken the school at the west meeting house. Mrs. Sanborn still lives with me, I expect she will through the summer, sends her love. I think it must have been a solemn time indeed when Mr. Palmer died.
I wanted to hear how you are situated now, and the particulars of every thing concerning you, especially your health. Do you have any of those ill turns now, Are you obliged to blister, plaster &c--Can you sit up all day? I want to know what you mean about seeing
Lake Ontario twice a year. When you write take this letter and answer all my queries. It is very healthy in this place, and in all the neighbouring towns.
Now my dear Calvin what shall I say to you. I hope you are well, and prosperous, enjoying both temporal and spiritual blessings. We hope to hear from you soon. When Jonas comes on in the fall, Hope he will come into this town and take a budget for us--not convenient to send any now. We often speak of you and Margarette--wish you could pop in now and then and see us, tell a goose story [sic], hold the baby, &c. Hope before many years we shall enjoy each other's society again, wish we could live near each other. As I intended this for a wrapper I will not fill it, I must close by wishing you "well in well doing," I must write a line to Louisa to send by Hugh. I suppose she wrote you, her health was extremely good. No love to the Boy at present.
Adieu for the present.
Dear brother and sister--
From your sister Mary--
Daniel sends his best love. We all want and L.O.N.G to see you.
This is written in great haste, expect the Stage every minute.
Monday noon 15th
[Back of letter, envelope wrapper:]
Mrs. Margarette B. MQuesten, Brockport N.Y.
1 To learn more about Margarette Barker Lerned [McQuesten] please see W0609.