W3057 TO REV. THOMAS BAKER from his sister Sarah Pike
Jun 25 1875
To: Rev. Thomas Baker
From: 5 Clinger Street, High Street, Hoxton, London, England
My very dear Brother
With much gratitude and pleasure I acknowledge the receipt of your kind letter containing the 2 Orders. I got it on the 23rd and went to the Post Office yesterday. Quite alone 24th, and got the Money all right. I thank you and your grand wife much for it. I had got quite low in cash, for my expenses have been very great, the kind young Clergyman whom I mentioned in my last letter asked me in the most gentlemanly manner (after making an apology for asking) if I stood in need of Money or anything I had not, he said it would afford him a great pleasure to assist me, I thanked him, and told him I did not want for any thing. He said he was glad of it. But if at any time I run short of money he hoped I would let him know, as he should be pleased to help me. Was it not kind? My own Church have never once said to me, Friend how do you get along?
I am truly sorry that my delay in writing you caused you such [?], but it caused me so much pain to lean forward that I put off writing hoping every day to be able to do it with greater ease to myself. You acted quite right not to send untill [sic] you heard from me, for if I could not write much, I hope as long as I live to be able to just sign my name, my nieces would have written but I would not let them do it, through mercy I am getting on very nicely, my bodily health is improved, I am very weak still cannot stand much exertion, the Doctor said that lying in bed so long would improve my bodily health, for I stood in need of rest, I worked too much for my strength. But I do like to work, and it is necessary that I should work, I have the same Lodgers, house full, things are never so bad but that they might be worse.
My arm is very weak, cannot raise it to the top of my head, I manage to dress myself with difficulty. I have to bring my head to to [sic] my arms by resting my elbow on the table in that awkward way. I can do it more to my mind than others can do it for me.
I told you I met with the accident on the day I was applied to about the necessity of a Missionary for this District. I am happy to inform you that we have one appointed, a very nice pious young man a Wesleyan, but all cards are laid aside his Visits are a great comfort to me, preaches in the open air on Sunday and generally brings me the outlines of his Sermons in the Week, his conversation is very spiritual he always reads the Scriptures and prays with me, I am very thankful for his visits, but I cannot think I do. I think I ought to improve, what with the Visits of the Vicar of St. Annes, and the City Missionary's Visits I feel quite blest [sic], I hope my profiting will be manifested to those about me. One of my Lodgers whom I have had to reform for much Drunkenness [sic] took the Pledge last evening. I hope this is only the beginning of better things I trust he will become willing to attend a place of worship.
Morley [&?] Sankey [have?] done a great work here in London, I regret that I could not get to hear them at all. I heard the gentleman who preached at Hoxton Academy chapel on Sunday evening say, that there was a great awakening, and that all the churches and chapels were better attended. This is encouraging, their Hymns are used everywhere, I do not admire them very much, to my old fashioned taste there is a want of reverence, and the tunes to which they are sung is very nice for secular music. I heard a delightful sermon at a Mission Hall lately, from "My Grace is sufficient for thee", after which they sang one of the Sankey Hymns, "Ring the Bells of Heaven." Give me the sublime and devout Hymns of Dr. Watts and Wesley in preference to those ranting American ones.
I think a Week or two at the seaside could benefit one, but I think shall not be able to have it, I am not fit to go alone neither could I enjoy it by myself.
Miss Pike went to Hastings last week and I am inclined to think she is the only member of the family that intends to go out this summer, I am very much obliged to you for sending in the means to go, but perhaps it will be better for me not to spend it in that way If the Weather is fine and I feel tolerably well I am engaged to spend next Sabbath day at my Husbands Neighbours. I have not lost my relish for Military pursuits, and I always go there when the Rifles go to Church, St Giles and I go with them. My Nephew is a very proud to introduce me to the Officers of his regiment, in the evening I hope to hear good Mr. Thorold, St. Pancras Church, where they have a seat. I like his preaching very much.
Do let me know when you write all you know about your Son John I feel very anxious about him. I have been thinking that perhaps it will be better for Harriet to return, she will have benefited by being with you, and her education of course is improved, as she does not take to learning very well. Mrs. Baker may instruct her in the Millinery Business which may better suit her taste. I think her brother was in a great hurry to marry. Poor Alfred seems to be a hopeless case.
My dear Brother I am so much obliged for your present, but it is so much for you to do for me I cannot tell you how I feel at receiving so much when you have so many to assist, but what could I do without your help. I am now incapable of work of any kind, so the Lord provides for me through you "Bless the Lord to my soul and all that is within me bless his holy name." And May it be abundantly returned to you and yours.
I am delighted with your account of dear little Mary, how I should like to see her fight. I think that makes her the more like yourself remember you possess a fighting spirit, every body admires her likeness, she looks such a good tempered little Cherub. May she grow up to be a great comfort to her parents and all pertaining to her.
I must now draw to a close I should be sorry to lose the Mail, I hope I shall not give so much trouble through my silence again.
Once more allow me to thank you for all your great kindness to me my warmest love to yourself and Mrs. Baker and all your dear family. Lots of kisses for dear little Tom.
May the best of Heavens blessing rest on you all is the earnest prayer of,
your affectionate Sister
P.S. Do not try to preach, it is too much for you at your advanced age I am not offended at your calling me old for I really feel it is true, If spared till next month I shall be 70 years of age