John Trutch to Caroline, Victoria, August 24, 1888

Victoria, B.C.
August 24th 1888

My dear Carry,

I have been owing you a letter so long that I am afraid to count up the time, but now I can not put off writing any longer lest I should be too late in sending you my yearly message of brotherly love & congratulation on your birthday. God grant that this letter may find you well & strong.

I have no word to send you of O’Reilly except that Joe got a short note from him a few days ago in which he said he was well, & hoped to be back in Victoria shortly. From what he said when he left he ought three weeks ought to see him here.

You will be sorry to learn that Joe was taken ill about the time O’Reilly left. but I am glad to say that he is now much better. The trouble was in his head. he suffered from giddiness & a bursting feeling. When Hanington saw him he said it was from a rush of blood to the head, induced be believed from want of exercise during his journey from England, and the confinement for ten days to a close room at Vancouver attending the arbitration, together with the heat of the weather, and close application to the matter under discussion. He ordered perfect perfect rest and quiet, so he remained down here for a fortnight, & then went back to Vancouver for a week, returning on Tuesday. I dont know whether he has written to any one since he came down, but he tells me that his examination is completed and that his is now free, and has been promised leave of absence, which means, I suppose, that he remains on pay for a while you can well imagine that we were much alarmed about him for some days. Hanington told me that he did not consider either of us subjects for an attack of that nature, but considered it was largely induced by the confinement, & inactions of his bowels from which he frequently suffers. Joe says he feels all right now, since he returned to Victoria & is arranging to go to Comox next week for some fishing. At our house every one is now pretty well, except Zoe, who continues to suffer at times from headache. The smells in this town are very bad, and there has been a good deal of sickness among children. We are always in a state of terror about Charlotte. Three weeks ago she had an attack she had a looseness for a week, when we thought it best to call in Hanington. He said it was a choleraic attack & though not severe, might become at any moment become serious so he gave her chalk mixtures & in a few days she became all right again. We had a great excitement here a week ago in a large circus. We had to go twice with her. & some of the performance was very good – the riding, trapeze, indian rubber men &c. but the menageric portion was disappointing as the best animals were not brought over. Only some camels lamas, several leopards, & three poor female elephants but to Charlotte it was a revelation & she was immensely delighted. I have been pretty well – just so so but no attacks of flatulence. I am thankful to say for a good while. I try to watch myself & be careful in what I eat. Some how I learn very little of the Victoria gossip, but you doubtless are kept well posted up by your Mrs. Jenns & your other female correspondents. The lawn tennis tournament is over, & the championship singles has been won by a Mr. Williams a new English land agent resident at Vancouver so Mr Hancock as failed to keep the cup. The ladies match was won by Miss Arrowsmith who defeated Miss Musgrave in the last set – excuse my ignorance if I have not used the right terms – Harry Jenns told Zoe she is going to be married to a Mr. Wilson an architect, and a new arrival. I understand that Crease & family are going to England in the spring for a years visit. B.W. Pearse & family are also going this winter, and Dupont & Dr. Powell this fall. The last two, I suppose, to sell Vancouver Town lots. Mrs. Miles came back a month or two ago from San F2 quite rejuvenated & I am told attends all the tennis parties, circus performance &c. – She certainly seems wonderfully better than she did when she went to California. Old Dumbleton takes the Pearse house when they leave. I have not heard from the Pinders for some week. They let their house for the summer, and have been living with Willy at Comox helping to build the railway to the new coal mines. They are to be down some time this month. The new Dunsmuir Mansion is beginning to make a show from Beacon Hill. It will command the whole country from McNeill’s Bay round by Esquimalt to Cedar Hill. They estimate the cost now at £40,000. Coal is certainly King, in this Province. Since I commenced this year I have learnt from Joe that they expect to go to England for a year or eighteen months in October, but there is nothing definitely settled yet. I am owing Pussy a letter which I am hoping to write soon as also one to Jack but these I must reserve until I return from Comox. Both Joe & I am anxious to learn about Frank whether he went to Spain or not. Jack of course is all right, as long as he is at school where he enjoys the games thoroughly. I suppose you have not seen much of Emily, or of Grace & the Ashleys as you have been so much on the continent. Give my love to them all, & I am sure Zoe & Charlotte would join with me & send theirs if they knew I was writing. And now with renewed assurance of my love to you & hoping will find you well in health & spirits & with love also to Pussy Frank and Jack.

I am always your affec brother. John Trutch.


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This collection of letters has been digitized from an earlier transcription project and is for informational purposes only. This transcription has not been verified against the originals. Researchers interested in these letters should consult the original documents housed at the BC Archives.

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