Letters to/from P.E.I. - Ellen (Coster) Robb to Jane Robb, Sep. 11, 1841

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Transcribed by Gary Carroll, [email protected]

Note: Original Letter in the New Brunswick Archives.

Letter from Ellen (Coster) Robb to Jane Robb.

Fredericton, NB, 11 Sept., 1841

My dear Sister,

It gave me very much pleasure to receive your kind letter by the last mail. I should have written before, but James and I like yourself have been travelling about the country this summer and have only just returned. I daresay you will have heard of us by this time from your brother Charles, who we most unexpectedly met at Halifax; having been from home so long we had not received the letters, in which you mention his having sailed in the Acadia, so that it took us quite by surprise to find him there. I could hardly believe James when he told me he had seen his brother in the morning and that I should soon have a visit from him at the Hotel; it appears to me now like a dream, we were together such a very short time, but short as it was, we were of course de-lighted to have seen him, and we flattered ourselves that you will be equally glad to hear of us from him. Though our acquaintance was short, we were very good friends and I hope that one day we shall know one another better. I was delighted with our excursion this summer; it was the first time James and I had been away from home together, and I was very happy, quite as happy as you appear to have been in Ireland. We left Fredericton with Sir Charles FitzRoy, the Governor of Prince Edward�s Island, who very kindly offered to give us seats in his carriage as far as Chediac {sic, Shediac}, where a steamer would be in readiness to take us across to Charlottetown. It was a long journey by land for Chediac is about two hundred and fifteen miles from Fredericton but the weather was so delightful and the roads so good that I was not the least fatigued, but behaved admirably, "though I say it who should not". Sir Charles� only companions were his son and his Secretary Mr. Haviland, at whose house we were to stay when we got to Charlottetown The day after we arrived Lady Mary FitzRoy�s bazaar took place; there were a great many pretty things to be sold, the work of Lady Mary herself and her daughter and the ladies of Charlottetown; James bought me two or three little things and Sir Charles gave me a very pretty case for holding note paper, the work of Miss FitzRoy. �230 was the money received by Lady Mary, which was a great deal I think for such a small place. Nothing could be kinder and more attentive than Mr. Haviland and his daughters were to us, and I could hardly believe that nearly three weeks had passed and we were still there; I forgot to tell you, that they were at the wedding of Miss FitzRoy and Captain Stuart of the "Kingdom". Miss Haviland was one of the brides-maids. It of course was the occasion of a great deal of gaiety. We returned home by way of Halifax, and at St. John met Papa and my sister Margaret, who had been very ill while we were away, and had gone for a little change of air; she is now quite well again, and I am looking forward to her return home very soon; I miss her very much when she is away, we are very nearly of the same age, and have always been together, till this summer I never went from home without her; the others are all much younger than Margaret and I, the eldest of them is only just twelve years old. I hope I have not wearied you with this account of ourselves; James is looking much better since his return; the weather is much pleasanter than it was, the heat is not so oppressive, and I think that he bears the cold much better than the heat; he looks quite a different being in the winter. I was vexed that his brother saw him when he was not looking his best --- I still think him the very kindest and best in the world. Give my very kindest love to your Mama, and tell her that I hope to write to her by the next mail. If you think it is decorous to give my love to your brother William, you may. I will leave it for you to decide. James went into the country this morning after breakfast, and I do not expect him home till late in the evening. I have left him a little room to write a few lines to your Mama. I am now going down to spend the rest of the day with my Mama who is rather lonely now that Papa and Margaret are away.

{P.S. --- 15 September}

My dear Jane,

I am sorry to say that James has not been well this last day or two; I have persuaded him not to write as he wished; tell your Mama that he fully intended to write to her and his brother William, Mr. Gray and Mr. Macdonald; I hope and trust there is nothing serious the matter with him, but there has been so much sickness in the place, that I was frightened and made him send for the Doctor.

{P.P.S.} In his note to William sent by Mr. Barnard he spoke about ordering a coat from Hunter for himself but he now finds that his purses won�t suffice and begs me to say that, if not yet got, nothing may be done in the matter this season.

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