Australian Access Federation

You are here: Home Corpora Corpus of Oz Early English 1-192 (Original)

1-192 (Original)

Item metadata
author,female,Ranken, Janet,25 addressee,female
Word Count :
Plaint Text :
Private Written
Private Correspondence
Clarke, 1992
Document metadata

1-192.txt — 7 KB

File contents

Mrs Campbell was very much frightened and ill for three weeks afterwords but fortunately for me I had not the sense to be frightened. Indeed Mrs Campbell was so much frightened that she told me she had miscarried her twintyeth child but gude forgie [god forgive] me I think she hardly sticks to the truth in family concerns she makes them all very young and for Mrs McLeod who has three children and is just about to have the fourth she is only twenty one or two and the young ladies three straping queens are from eighteen to fifteen but the youngest may pass for eighteen and the oldest for twinty six. Well we lost sight of St Jago and then we were becalmed for weeks together and but for harpooning sharks and shooting whales I dont know what the gentlemen would have done with themselves and the ladies generally were disputing which of their lords or brothers or lords to be (for there were some matches made up on the way) that had the merit of sending the poor shooten fishes to their long homes - And then, but this is rather a serious story, a young man of the name of Nicholson, a servant of Mrs Campbell, went to sleep in the jolly boat and was struck by the sun. [151] He died on the ninth day afterwards and was buried on the day after his death. I never never will forget the sound of the deep and hollow plunge when the body was consined [sic] to its fathomless bed of rest. It was a calm day and every wave was as still as death till the mornin after his funeral when all at once there was a breeze got up and in twelve hours we were a hundred miles from poor Nicholson.
"No home no kiss no niver never
Sound shall his sleep be forever and ever"
After leaving sight of St Jago and that was on the 17 of July we never saw land again till the 16th October when we arrived at King George's Sound the coast of New Holland. . . I never in my life suffered as much cold as I did for a fortnight before we reached the Cape till within a few days sail of Van Diemens. There we arrived all in good health upon the 28th Octr I did not get a house till the 31st but I got a very good one then and very far superior to any I expected. I see the hills out of my windows and I see beautiful little cottages with there fruteful gardens and hedges of roses and I see a very neat church and stipple and I can see a signal post where they hoist a large flag when ever they see a ship coming in at the foot of the river and this is just what I have been looking at. Brauchild has been away at Sydney and I am expecting him home every day. I have never heard from him since he left this but by chance their was a vessel driven in here that was bound from Sydney to the Cape and brought word of the Grace - the ship George went in - being arrived at Sydney and that all passengers were well - 'Now I shall discribe this country but I cannot do I have never been farther out of the town than seven miles but what I have seen is most beautiful. However it is a very different still [style] of beauty from Jeffrey's Van Diemens Land - all that I have seen is more grand than beautiful. The river Derwent is a broad and deep river abounding with fish of many kinds, thickly wooded on both sides excepting here and there a patch of cultivated land with fine thriving crops. The sail up the river from this to Restdown [Risdon] a distance of five miles is very fine quite like the scenery in our highlands of Scotland. Mrs Campbell has taken Restdown for a few months. George thought of taking part of the house but I did not like that. Mrs Campbell does best to visit she will give you a highland welcome when you go to see her but I should not like to be door neighbours. I have been there spending my christmass. . Every thing is dear beyond all calculation excepting mutton bread and tea. . . meat is the same as in England, the bread is as good and rather cheeper, good black teas from 4 / to 5 / a pound, green from 5 / to 6 / 6, butter from 5 / to 7 / 6 per lb - Oh a kingdom per a dozen eggs from 2 / to 3 / a Dozn. I bought a pair of young ducks the other day the coast 6 / and I paid for eight little chickens that had not left there Mother 12 / the potatoes were for a long time 4d a lb but I can buy them now for three halfpennys. [152] Every kind of kitchen goods are modarite in prise if you buy a quantity together. There is an Indian ship here at present and I have bought a bag at 7d per lb theirs a nice pickle. ... O I wish I had brought a great many things here that I have not. I have written a list of things which I really would require if Willie could find it convenient to send them - The society here is abominable. Mr Lord a man worth half a million money is married to a convict woman. The Leut Governor Mr Sorell is married but he left his own wife in England and brought another mans wife with him in her stead. Mrs Lord sent her daughter Miss Lord and her sister Mrs Simpson to call upon me when I came here but I have never returned the call yet nor shall I although wile Governor McWharie [Macquarie] and his lady were here paying there last visit Mrs Lord was Mrs McWharies most intimate friend and I have been advised to visit her but they say "evil communication corrupts good manners" so I shall rather be without the kindnesses that Mrs Lord has in her power to show me than visit her. The Colonel surgeon and his lady are a very pleasant pair she was the only daughter of Coin Davies late Leut Governor of this place and Dr Scot [Scott] is a Scotch man. I find myself at home when I go to see them and Dr Scot is always ready to give his advice when it is asked.
There are a great many settlers come out here this season all of them the grandest people ever I saw they are surely come to spend and not to make money as for their wives and daughters they are so much of fine things that they cannot put on there own clothes they must all have maids to do that for them and there papas are all Majors Colonels and for Captains they are like to knock one another down that is never hard if you may find them clarks to some of the great store keepers here. Major Bell the commander in chief and his wife called upon me. Mrs Bell is a good sort of person but I hate the Major. In short we are all come here to make money and money we will have by hook or by crook so to talk of friendship would be a sad prostitution of the word trust no one but for your own interest appear to trust every one. I shall sertainly here from Scotlan by some of these ship arrived here yesterday morning on one day since I came here there were four large ships anchored here from London. The horses here are dreadfully expensive, any thing good will coast £80 or £100 a dollar here is thought no more of than a penny in Scotland this to me is incomprehensible but even so it is. [...] 
I believe we shall have very few settlers from England after this I heard the other day that nobody would get more than 200 acres let their property be ever so great. [153] This may not be true but we shall soon hear from Sydney &c &c I meant to have written to Bettie and Jane Mitchell but I find I shant have time you must let them try to read this. My dear Margaret be assured that I am very happy and do not regrate coming here. ...