Kathleen to Caroline, London, February 2, 1897


AlE Or3 Or32
File XI

Recd Feb. 20th 97
Mrs. O’Reilly
Point Ellice
British Columbia Canada

4a The Mansions
Earl’s Court
2nd February 97

My dear sweet Mother,

Thanks so much for your letter 13th Jan. I was very delighted to get it last evening together with one from dear Father & one from Jack, that naughty old Frank never writes to me. I cane up from the Barclays on Saturday & was very kindly received here by Mr. & Mrs. Ward. I had such a nice visit at Tringley Manor. quite a change & excitement for me. The dance I did not enjoy as much as the Folkestone one the men did not dance so well & the floor was not good in fact very bad. I could not understand people having everthing else in such beautiful order & not minding the floor being such a failure. Mrs. Barclay said mine was much the prettiest dress. The house looked very nice beautiful supper and lovely flowers. The day after we went out tobogganning it was great fun. I was too much afraid to go down at first but when I had once screwed up my courage, I wanted to go down every time. it was rather tiring. The snow was on the ground the whole time I was there we did not skate as the ice was rough & it was a pity I could not go to Woburn Abbey the Duke of Bedfords which is a grand place to see. Mrs. Barclay said she wd have taken me, if the snow had not been so deep. I worked a tea cloth for her bazaar stall whilst I was there it is to be in May & she holds the stall with Lady Ampthill [?] one of the twins, her son, was at the dance – Mr. Victor Russell – a very pleasant little man. I danced twice with him. I like Mr. Hubert Barclay very much, he is the eldest son, and married his wife is Eileen Ellis’ ditto. I noticed it immediately & they all said, every one who knows them both, says the same & her little boy ran to Eileens’s photo & said “Mammy”. She is taller than Eileen & has an elegant figure but there is something that reminds one of her. She was very nice to me & said she hoped I would stay with her in the Hartfordshire before I go home. Lots of money they have they are very angry about Mr. Georg’s engagement. I travelled to London with a Mr. & Miss Bradshawe who asked me to go & see her in town. She is just going abroad to the south of Europe and hoped we should meet. She is pretty & nineteen years but looks ten more, we all thought. Everyone seems to be going abroad so I am beginning to feel excited about it. I expect to see Uncle Joe this afternoon & hear his plans – if only we could get a delightful fourth to go with us – it is boring to be alone with him & Josephine. He is most strange about her & everyone is laughing about it, such a pity! & such a poor joke, I think, Adm. Hare always says he will marry her & Totty Wood asked me yesterday “Where are the lovers?” I went to see dear Mrs. Seymour on Sunday. She was very nice & sweet but she had such a twinkle in her eye when she talked about the Josephs

[section missing]

Mr. Ward wanted me to write a severe letter back, but I think better to drop the matter. I remember he sent a bill once to Pt. Ellice and I think Father asked for particulars which were not supplied. Yesterday I went to tea with Miss Edwards, she was very nice. When I got back the Jacksons came they want me to go to them whenever I like and make use of them in any way. Mr. J. suggests I get a bicycle from Atkinson who has connections with the city & can get one anything for less than at a shop – he is a Jew I fancy. I am making inquiries from everyone before deciding. In the evening we went to see the Woods. Mat Johnstone was there looking very well and smart. I do’nt know where to find the Snowdons. Jessie wrote me she was so surprised to have a letter from Emily fr. Queenstown. The Musgraves are in Dublin so do’nt want me till next week at Turin they when up for the Drawing Room & had such heaps of balls & dinners they decided to stay till the end of the week. I am so sorry Father says he will not come this spring it seems a great pity about his leg are you coming Mother dear? he says he wd like you to & they say it is to be a good season on account of the Queen’s Jubilee but if you are not coming I think I wd rather go home & then there might be chance of you two coming in a year or even the spring after. I know you both ought to. Father is so sweet & good in saying Iam to stay as long as I like regardless of cost but I do ‘nt see any particular object in staying this summer if it had been last summer, I should have liked to, but that cannot be helped now. So do let me know dears what you decide to do, & I must arrange accordingly. When is Jack’s exam? What a pity dear old Frank, has to go away so soon. I must get the cardigan for him. I wonder if I am to send it to pt Ellice or if it is only wanted for next season? I must write for his birthday & I think he wd like some new neckties. I do’nt know quite what to do with the furs you are sending me it is good of you Mother dear. Mr. Thomson’s brother & sister called here on Sunday. Give my love to Mr. & Mrs. Thomson they are very much like him Mrs. Ward tells me. he is very rude & cross sometimes when he sees people. The other day he came here & held forth about his dislike for Naval men which she thought very unnecessary & he was freezing to Capt. & Mrs. Williams who were here. Then he told Mr. Ward all about Adm. Hare’s weakness – very bad taste, I call it. Do’nt ever tell him anything he not only repeats things, but gives his own interpretation. I feel disgusted about it, but of course do not say so & hope I shall not. I have not let the grass grow under my feet since I came to town on Saturday about 3.0’Cl. I told the Wards I wanted to go to call at 1. Egerton Gdns. so I went off in a hansom & went first to £§.. Lady Chesterfield was at home & the youngest son Charley with her & a lady was calling there. We had tea. Mr. C. Stanhope was very pleasant & easy to get on with very like the sailor in manner – the same size, looked younger, but very dark hair & not so good looking. Lady c. said she had heard fr.

Harry fr. Marseilles a very rough blow thro’ the Bay of Biscay & lovely balmy air at Marseilles. She was very nice & asked me to come again. I think she took a fancy to Carry and Carry arranged for a servant of hers who was ill to go to a home of Rest at Folkestone. I went to see her there & ask if she was happy, wh. Lady c. said was very sweet of me. She is very motherly but a smart looking woman. She asked about my plans said I ought to go

to Rome only I must take care of myself & not stay out in the evenings for fear of fever. I went on to No. 1 & found Lady S. & May just come in they were most friendly & affectionate and I felt a little sorry I had not gone to Rockingham. She said they could not get hold of me. Sir M. went to Bailey’s to try to get me to come to dinner to meet Adm. Heneage. he saw Sir Joseph & Josephine – & Lady s. wants to know why he had taken her up? I think Sir Michael must have amused her Lady S. about his visit to them! Uncle Joe is so proud of her, he says all the men tell him she is a monstrous pretty girl, & Mrs. Ness said she is magnificent & lovely. Do’nt you think it nonsense. I tell him all parents are accustomed to hear such things & take them as flattery! Lady s. & May have gone to Bath for a fortnight of baths to be ready for the Drawing Room on 24th, she told me. I am sorry they are not in town whilst I am here. On Sunday, we went to the Broughton Oratory in the morning. High Mass and Sermon. Lovely music met Mrs. Walkem coming out. She was looking very well & was very pleasant. After 1unch Mr. Ward took me to the concert in Albert Hal1. which everyone has been telling me I ought to go to they have them every Sunday. I enjoyed it. then I went to tea with Mrs. Seymour, came back, & went to Church with Mr. w. in the evening a very good Sermon by Eardley Wilmot at st. Jude ‘s.

Now I must tell you I wrote fr. Folkestone & made an appointment with Clayton Woodhouse for Sat.2.0’Cl. when I reached the Barclays they said I could not keep the time unless I left after the dance about 8.30.a.m. as we did not get to bed till after 4.a.m. Mrs. B. wd not hear of it & made me stay till mid-day. I wrote & explained to Mr. Woodhouse & asked him to make another appointment for me. He sent rather rude note, saying I had “wasted an hour of his valuable time” & I must wait till my return fr. Ireland by the same post comes a letter from Carry enclosing a note she had had fr. him, asking her if she would be responsible to him if he filled my tooth as Mr.O’Reilly’ s family had owed him money since 91[?]. so I have taken no furthur notice & have an appointment tomorrow at noon with an American dentist Cavendish Square highly recommended. If Mr. Woodhouse wanted the money he could have asked me. Tonight Mr. Ward is taking us to the Opera (Faust) Carl Rosa Company. I forgot to tell you I did not see Mr. John White he was to meet me at Charing X & I told him, he wd know me by a large trunk with my initials on the end. My saying this proved fatal for I was rather late for the train at Folkestone Station, & just as we went off Jack Benn ran to the carriage window saying “Yr luggage will come by next train”. So when I reached Charing X I did not go to the luggage van to claim it. I looked about for Mr. White & came to the conclusion he was not there. I suppose he was at the luggage van for he wrote to carry. “he met the train but saw nothing of me or my big box!” What a little thing makes all the difference! I had a good deal of trouble telegraphing from Charing X to find out what could be done about my belongings & after two hours! they answered it wd be there by a quarter to 3. As my train at St. Pancras was 3 o’clock I could not get there with it, as it is twenty minute drive! Strangely contrary!! I had to meet Col. Barclay at St. Pancras so I felt I must go as the carriage wd be at the station & it is three miles drive to the house. I had yr travelling bag & Col. Barclay & Mr. George & I went down together they could not have been nicer & sent that evening to the station for my box but it did not come till the next morning it was annoying for me but I did not worry as it was no good & Miss B. lent me things for the night; & blouse & skirt to go to dinner in the family were alone the party arrived the next day so it did not matter very much. The engagement of Capt. Barnes & Miss Barkely is announced in the Morning Post. Capital for Barkus! I think she deserved success after going on anyhow! as Mr. Drummond would say. No half measures all the same as Mrs. Victor fell very pleased about them both. Do you want me to get her a good fishing rod, as a present? is that naughty! or a stuffed bear?

Tell Jack the expression I hear everyone using is “Now we shant be long.” it seems to come in appropriately often – they say it is American & Vivian Hare if asked whether he has had a good time, or enjoyed anything replies if he has like it “Not so dusty.” Now Mrs. Ward and I are going on a pilgrimage to Truefitts Bond Street. Where I want to learn to do my hair and have it shampooned as Beauchamp would say.

Much dear love to you all

from your loving child


Mrs. Ward sends love & such long messages to you. She thinks I am looking very well & that Folkestone did me worlds of good.

No telegram yet with News of Nelly Oliver.

Very badly written letter this!

(*1) – 2020 – This letter is also part of the O'Reilly/Stanhope Correspondence Collection.


Back to Letters 1896-97

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.

Scroll to Top