Object #1007104 from MS-Papers-0032-0817
From: Inward family correspondence - Archibald John McLean (brother), Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0817 (65 digitised items). Letters written on board ship or from various ports, 1847-1858 prior to his arrival in New Zealand in mid-1858. From then on the letters are almost all written from Maraekakaho about station matters.
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29 March 1861
My dear Donald
I was going to write you the day after the vessel sailed on the 12th inst. all the particulars regarding the shiping of the sheep and horses but Mr Fitzgerald wrote in full by Alex directions. I believe however we got the sheep on board very well and with good dispatch. Their was only seven lost in the shiping and when I left the vessel on the evening of the 11th they were all doing well. The weather has been very favourable ever since they left and I trust in providence they got them safely landed without much loss. The number on board was 1670 and 3 mairs, the entire Samson and Jack the donkey. On the morning of the 12 the ship was just going out of sight when I left with the horses that was returned having no room and 211 .. for home.
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We then got the flock in and drafted out lambs 601 large enough to go 2 tooth 193, 4 tooth 149, 6 tooth 106, and 198 of those returned fit to go making 1247. The sheep 50 wethers and 23 rams ready for the 2nd trip. I am looking very anxious for the vessel now. She ought to be in every hour so as to drive the sheep down. It is a great pity but she was a month sooner for the sheep are now lambing on the station but if she comes within a few days all those that are drafted will not lamb for a month and the most of them are dry. I will write you all the particulars after the ship leaves again. Things are getting on very well here. Both the ladies are striving hard to make things comfortable at home. It will be a great pity and sad disapointment if you do not come down for they have a wonderful couriosity to see the Big Man as they call you. We expect Mr Strang by this steamer and things are so arranged now at home to make the old gentleman quite comfortable for the bush. All the respectable people call on us
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now and they are quite astonished at the alteration a s[h]ort time of female society and tact has made. I have got a brood of the English hens. They are beauties. I will not say any more about home only that we are busy putting up a good cattle s[t]ockyard and threshing the wheat. I got a man to do it for 9 per bushel. The cheapes[t] way it could be done. We will have over 100 bushels. We have a fine crop of potatoes. I am getting them taken up also plenty of all kind of vegetable of all kinds. We had a week of Fitzgerald and his wife and both my wife and sister were very glade when they went away. She said you told them?? to go to the station however they were treated with all manner of kindness. I see two letters for you to Alex by this mail with imidiate on them but I will not oppen them till he comes. I now must sincerely hope for your own interest and all our interests it was only for three weeks to see if the plans could be secured on some better footing than at preasant for they are renting Maorie land right and left. If you do care I hope you will bring little Douglas with you. Stewart
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is a very promising young man. He is tailing the Otago flock on Tuke's plains as we call the big flat. Catherine is really a good girl and a most deserving one. She is the one that would make a good settler's wife and not the tipeny hasey ones I have seen in this country. How would one of your friends, the Canterbury McLeans, answer.
I will not say any more. Hoping to see you soon. I remain your affectionate brother
Archibald John McLean
Sunday 30th 1861
PS. After closing this Alex returned and says they had a fair trip. He says they were seven ten days going down. They landed the sheep at Moerakai [crossed out] Lyttelton without much loss. The horses was landed in good order. They called at Canterbury on there return. [crossed out]
Excuse this mistake for I would not have room only for the inclosed
[Note on transcription: twopenny halfpenny = low person]
Inward family correspondence - Archibald John McLean (brother), Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0817 (65 digitised items)
Series 9 Inwards family letters, Reference Number Series 9 Inwards family letters (1204 digitised items)
McLean Papers, Reference Number MS-Group-1551 (30238 digitised items)
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