Peter to Caroline, Victoria, December 14, 1888 No 28.

14th Decr. 1888

My dearest Wife

Three days ago I posted my last to you – a long rambling epistle it was. This must be a short one for it is nearly 9.O.C. & Hick has undertaken to post it tonight, but I know a short letter will be better than none.

Twenty five years ago tonight, do you remember my calling at F.Field to see you? How many changes have taken place since then, but by Gods mercy we have been spared to each other through many & great dangers. I pray that we may be further preserved to meet in health & happiness. Tomorrow you will be specially in my thoughts. I hope Kit has made suitable selection, & that you will receive it with my fond love and affection. –

In a very few days you will be made happy by having both our dear ones with you – let there be no half measures, but be very happy. Have you had your teeth attended to. Have you got a good sponge for yourself. Dont come back & tell me I have nothing to wear. – I cannot recollect whether Thresher & Glenny’s bill was paid. I think not, particularly as some of the items were got the day before I left London. £2..2..1. is the amt of acct. you enclosed. It appears a long time since I recd. a letter from Kit. What has happened to her? Jack too, appears to have given me up. I wish he would learn to No and date his letters I have before all I have recd. since I returned, & only two are dated, impress this on him. Frank had certainly been most satisfactory in writing since he left England, his letters are very interesting, & are much appreciated by me, it is very hard that he should be so far from us, but we ought to be thankful that he is getting on so well. I shall be disappointed if we do not get a good report of Jack at the coming examinations. I was not at all satisfied with the last.

You saw Joe, & Julia, I suppose, very soon after you wrote your last, so I shall expect an account of your meeting with them in your next. I hope they will be nice to you, dear one, if not you must not let it worry you. Your accounts of all that takes place will be very interesting, you have been most satisfactory in writing so much, & your letters have afforded me a great deal of pleasure. Of course, I am anxious to learn where you will spend your Xmas – as in your last you spoke of going to Clarges Str.

Since I wrote my last on the 11th I have been very busy in the office, my work is greatly behind, having been so much in the field since my return.
I am sorry to say that Hick is not well, he has been ailing for days, and the night before last he fainted in the Kitchen, he is thin & looks miserable, but he insists on doing everything in & out of the house as usual, he takes great interest in keeping the place in order. —- I have been to Fairfield today in consultation with Bishop about a new horse for Joe – about which I must write to him – Blossom – his bay mare was sold today $140-. Tomorrow I dine at with John – he never forgets the 15th Decr.

I always feel grateful to Joe for all the interest, & trouble he took on that memorable occasion, 25 yrs ago.

John and Zoes dinner to the Earl has not yet come off, they learned that he was engaged to Sir M.B.B. so he will be asked for next week. Last night M.B.B.’s entertainment came off the usual gathering, John was there in more force that usual with him; there was of course Whist, his Lordship did not take a hand, but came away with me at 11-O.C. he told me he liked the Chief. I wonder what he thought of the service. I took a walk with him in the afternoon & shewed him over the foundary, we could not do more as it commenced to rain.

The Doctor says the patient is better, less fever, & lower temperature, but his father is evidently depressed about him, he says he cannot see any change for the better during the last three days, let us hope that the Dr. is right. The young man will be removed here as soon as it is considered safe. he will occupy our room, & his father the north room. Everything belonging to the Drawing room has been moved into it covered up carefully and will not be interfered with. Mrs. Ward will make up the beds &c. I have had all the rooms cleaned out, & fires going all today. I hope you will approve of all I have done. The Kitchen also has been well scrubbed & looks well. Annie Pinder has been very attentive in making beef tea &c. The Earl called on her a couple of days since to thank her, he spoke to me very nicely about her afterwards. I feel that on Capt Hares account we ought to do all we can to help his brother while he is in such trouble, & not leave it to be done by others.

How I wish you were here, & still I should not like to take you away from the dear wee man, just now, even if I could do so. Mrs. & Mr. Drake & Maude leave for California tomorrow. Maude looks better than she did, but Mrs. D has been a martyr to neuralgia of late, I hope the change will do her good.

I have not had time to go anywhere of late. Mrs. Jackson has been most pressing that I should stay with them. The Creases have invited me to dine twice but I prefer to be at home scribbling to the “poor dear thing”. If you see the Wards tell them I met Nelly today – she reported all well give them my love to Joe, Julia Carry, E.W. &c &c. Especially to darling Kit and to Jack. May God bless you all.

Always your devoted husband

P. O’Reilly


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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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