Australian Access Federation

You are here: Home Corpora Corpus of Oz Early English 2-099 (Text)

2-099 (Text)

Item metadata
addressee,female author,female,Gibson, Isabella,un
Word Count :
Plaint Text :
Private Written
Private Correspondence
Clarke, 1992
Document metadata

2-099-plain.txt — 5 KB

File contents

I wrote home on the 17th of Febry last which letter I hope will reach London about this time informing you that we arrvd at Sydney on the 16 Decr and that I had engaged here with a Mr Hunt to do his apholsterary needle work, salary to be 8£ a year. For several months after landing I was afflicted with the scurvy and other complaints from which I am now got quite better of and at present in good health.  I am much surprised and disappointed at receiving no letter from you considering how strictly I charged you to write soon and how faithfully you promised to do so. It is now ten months since I left home yet no letter from any of you. I regularly enquire at the post office every Packet that comes from England and as often return home disappointed. I can get no intelligence of the Mail Brigg the ship which Richard was to come by. It is conjectured here that the owners of it must have failed and in consiquence of that the ship will not come here at all at this time but if so it is strange he has not come out by any other ship whither he has changed his mind and is not coming at all or what has become of him I cannot ascertain. I form numberless conjectures but all in vain every day adds to my anxiety - I still remain at Mr Hunts and at the end of the first quarter had my wages raised from 2£ per quarter to 3 10£ which is 14£ a year this is the most they will give they are well satisfied with me or they would not have advanced it so much but in addition to my needlework I have now to make 8 beds and sweep out 6 rooms every morning. If I were assured that Richard would never come I would endeavour to return home as soon as possible if I could find it at all practicable but I doubt whither it will ever be in my power. Today I requisted the editor of a newspaper to advertise me to engage with any family that was going to England and wanted a female servant he said that he might do so but that I would find it a difficult matter to succeed there were such numerous applications of the same kind by people that were disappointed in their expectation of endeavouring to return home. He said that by advertising he thought I might procure a larger sallery if I could undertake to be a governess but in no other capacity accordingly I am going to advertise for a nursery governess (that is to begin young children and take the charge of them) free emigrants are sometimes allowed the priviledge of inserting an advertisement gratis in this newspaper so mine is at this time to be put in free of expense, but I do not well know what is best to do there are so very few places that is any way tolerable here that I am afraid to risk leaving Hunts they are such quiet people and have never once found fault with me since I came to their house. But I trust that providence will direct me for the best for I have none either to care for or assist me. Shop work of any kind is rarely to be had here what is sold in the shops is most all brought from London ready made Millinery and dressmaking are I understand better paid for than what the dressmakers made me to believe when I was trying amongst them for employment they charge from three shillings to 12 for making gowns and from 4 to 7 or 8 shillings for covering a silk or Velvet bonnet willow for bonnet shapes 1/6 per sheet and 2/6 or 3 sh when made into a shape it is mostly gause ribbon that they are trimmed with here and that is about 2 sh per yd.  I lay out as little as possible on clothing but the family I am in require that their servants well dressed so I am obliged to do so. I had my straw bonnet cleaned & pressed lately for which I paid 2/6d. I regret that I have no person to live with me that I could trust or I would take a room and make bonnets and frocks and sell a few toys, penny dolls sell here for 6d each or take in apolstering needlework. Miss Vetch the Scotch woman is the only person I could put my confidence in and I understand she is expecting to be married soon to a farmer 150 miles up the country - A farmer and his family that came out with us in the ship went to live at that place and a few of his neighbour farmers employed him to return to Sidney and bespeak wives for them among the free women that he could recommend he fixed on Miss V. for one and she has had two letters from the man saying that he intends to come to Sidney soon when if they approve of each other at sight they will be directly married. If I was to give the least hint of such a thing being agreeable to me I might have the same opportunity but I could not bring my mind however destitute I may be to think of marrying any person I had no regard for on this account I declined accepting one offer I have had already from a man who has lived a while in this family as cook and butler an Englishman about 45 years of age he has been most of his life time a soldier & has now a pension of 15£ a year and a house and 20 acres of land from government about 70 miles from Sidney he has now left his service here and gone to live at his little property. A number of women that came out with me have married prisoners - Dear H I hope you will not on any account delay writing to me immediately on receiving this. On my own account I would like to see you here but for my fathers sake and your own I could not advise you to come because I am conscious by doing so you would run the risk of suffering more hardships than I would like to see any of you subjected to. I hope Christina is continuing better that my father is keeping his health and that all of you are well let me know if the cholera has been in London this summer. Being so close confined here I have almost no opportunity of hearing any news or seeing any of my ship acquaintances. . . I dread the coming of the warm weather again if I could get home I would not wish to remain here longer than the month of Feby next. If so I might have time to have an answer to this letter from you before I left here at all events if you are alive and well do not be so long in writing to me again.