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Petworth Emigration, 1832, Letter from Thomas Adsett to His Father-in-law

From Thomas Adsett, formerly of Northchapel, to Thomas Scutt, his Father in law, Bignor, near Petworth.

September 9th 1832
Dear Father,
I am sorry to be the messenger of bad news: but we are in a land of disappointment: if we go to bed at night, well and hearty, we may not rise in the morning alive. April 11th. Set sail from Portsmouth. Fair wind for some days. Children and Wife quite well, self quite sick, and so I continued for a month. May 19th. Harriet failed with the hooping cough, and continued getting worse: wife and the children quite well, all the way over. June 2, reached Quebec: 7th to Montreal; after a passage of 8 weeks and 1 day; and almost all the way very rough sea. Here we left the Melville, and took the Durham Boats: here we was put hard to it, being exposed to the weather until we reached York. 19th. Reached York: Harriet kept getting worse: we did not stop at York above 5 or 6 hours: next came Hamilton: wife failed in eating: left and came to Waterloo: child very bad; wife quite poorly; and kept getting worse. July 1st Harriet died. 2nd. Wife very bad. 3rd. died. The doctor said, that it was the scarlet fever: the other children all well. Sarah (2 years old) a gentleman by the name of Chapman, a Carpenter, came and took her, the 7th. Charles (6 years old) is at a Weavers: Emma (7 years old) is at Mr. Tottles, in Dumfries: and are well; and like the place quite well. I get plenty of work, at 5s. York, that is 2s. 3 of your money, and board. Here is plenty of whisky, at 1s. per quart; here is no beer; and the water is not so good in many places as in England. They live in quite a different way to what they do in the old country; but they live much better. The produce is wheat; oats; winter barley; rice; indian corn; and potatoes; but this is truly the wooden world. If we find so many houses as at Crouch, we should think that we should be in a city: the houses are about half a mile a part. Here is plenty of pheasants; and pigeons; and deer, that will weigh 20 stone; and bears; foxes; wolves; and hares. I can say no more at present. Write to me as soon as possible, and send word how they all are. Direct, Thomas Adsett, Galt, Dumfries, U. Canada, N. America.

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