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Petworth Emigration, 1832, Letter from Richard Neal to his Friends

From Richard Neal, of Sutton, Sussex, to his Friends.

Dundas, North America
July 20th. 1832

Dear Friends and Relations,
I take this opportunity of these few lines to you, hoping to find you all in good health, as it leaves me at present. Thank God we landed safe at Quebec, after seven weeks sail. We had a very rough passage. I enjoyed good health all the way over; I never had one hour sickness all the time we were on the sea. They were most all sea sick. Joseph Leggett and Elias were a little sick, but not much. On the first of May we lost one of the sailors, and was one of the roughest days we had, but were tost about very much. We saw a large quantity of porpoises coming over, and whale fishes blow water as high as the mast head. We were about six weeks out of sight of land. The first land we saw was Cape Breton, a large mountain covered with snow. The 19th. and 21st May we entered the river of St. Lawrence, which was 400 miles long before we came to Quebec, some places 50 miles wide, and some places not so much. We saw snow for about 200 miles up the river, and the trees were coming out in leaf: as fast as we go up the country the forwarder the land is. When we landed at Quebec, a great many of the men (spirits being so cheap) drunk so much, it made them crazy: one of them got drowned there, and another at Montreal. We were at Quebec two days. There was six large ships towed up the river by one steam boat: the name of the steam boat was John Bull, 245 horse power. 180 miles from Quebec to Montreal. They were all French people there: you can buy rum 10d. per quart, port wine 1s. 3d. per quart, all the other liquors very cheap: cider about 6d. per quart. I was offered 5s. 6d. per day at Montreal, but I did not wish to stop. We went into the woods and found plenty morels, just like them in England; but the people did not know what they was: then we started for Little York, which is about 500 [355 Miles] miles further, all by water. When we landed at York, some went one way and some the other. I stopped there, Elias and Joseph Leggett went on with Hilton, 180 miles further: they promised to write to me, but I have had no letter from them; but I saw two men that went up with them: they both got work for one man: and Sefton Charman's wife's brothers they have got a good place, 12 dollars a month and their board. A man will get more a month here, with his board, than in England without. I have not seen any game about here, but there is pheasants and hares, and thousands of pigeons, and a few bears, and wolves, but a very few. There is a great many cherries in the woods, gooseberries, and nuts. I promised to send you the state of the country: I will as well as I can. This is a good country for one thing, the people are all of one sort, pretty much: their servants lives with their masters, and they gets good wages: but it is very hot in the summer, and very cold in the winter. I do not like this country so well as England, for men are not so strong as they are in England; nor the meat is not so good, but very cheap, I left York, and went to Dundas, and got a job there for a man of the name of Pope: he has been here five years, and is doing very well.

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