Object #1007378 from MS-Papers-0032-0828

8 pages written 7 Aug 1852 by Sir Donald McLean in Taranaki Region

From: Inward family correspondence - Susan McLean (wife), Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0828 (82 digitised items). The letters from Donald are written from Porirua Barracks, Otaki, Rangitikei, Waikanae, Wanganui and Taranaki. Susan's letters are addressed from Dalmuir Hill (her parent's home) and Wellington Terrace. Many letters are undated and were written prior to their marriage in Aug 1851. Includes correspondence between Susan McLean and her mother Susan Strang (2 letters, undated); one letter from Helen Anne Wilson to Mrs McLean, 30 August 1852

A transcription/translation of this document (by MD) appears below.

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Page 1 of 8. View high-resolution image

English (MD)

Taranaki
Augt 7 1852


My dearest Douglas

The receipt of two letters from you and one from Papa by today's mail has given me the greatest satisfaction and I feel so grateful and thankful to the Almighty for the good health you enjoy. I should like very much my own puss that we could be together on the 28th, the anniversary of our marriage, but I fear this cannot be accomplished nor can I say positively on what date I shall get back to Wellington.

You need not suppose that I shall delay an hour longer than duty requires. It is not so agreeable to me to be separated from my own pet and to be deprived of her kind attention

Page 2 of 8. View high-resolution image

English (MD)

as well as of her sensible and entertaining conversation. Your affection for poor Mama is a guarantee for your being a devoted and loving wife and I can fully appreciate and enter into my pussy's feelings when she talks of her departed mother in such a religious and proper manner. She certainly would not be pleased did she consider that you would do anything unbecoming, undignified or that would in any way displease Mama [crossed out] Papa, or myself, but my dearest we have a greater power to fear than our departed friends even if they preside over us, and that is the fear of the Almighty sovereign of the universe who sees us at all times and who is

Page 3 of 8. View high-resolution image

English (MD)

present to aid those who put their trust and confidence in Him. I pray that He may always guard and direct you through all your earthly pilgrimage and to His protecting arm I confide you humbly hoping that you are not forgetful that the health and every blessing you now enjoy proceeds from him.

Taranaki is much improved as regards society. There are now people here of a very superior class but I do not visit much among the strangers beyond occasional calls. I go chiefly to Capt King's, Dr Wilson's and a few of my old and good friends. I am glad you have escaped the prevailing influenza at Wellington. The Govetts have suffered most by it here but that has been owing chiefly to the badly constructed house they live in there being no

Page 4 of 8. View high-resolution image

English (MD)

no ventilation. So you see I was deeply interested in your health when I advocated ventilation so much at home. We have a most excellent library here with the most recent works, newspapers and periodicals. In that respect they are far in advance of Wellington.

Mr Halse and Cooper have just come in from a party so I shall ado no more until Monday, tomorrow being Sunday.

Monday 9th August
I have perused your letters over and over again and I feel so happy that Papa takes such good care of you. The Govetts are quite well again or nearly so. Mrs Wilson frequently asks for you but I fancy she thinks you have slighted her by not writing. I should feel exceedingly vexed if

Page 5 of 8. View high-resolution image

English (MD)

I felt this was really the case as she is as much superior to some of your Wellington friends as you are to most of them yourself and she is not unlike you in some of her ways making due allowance for her being old and grey headed. She evidently takes the lead in society here. Notwithstanding the wealth and respectability of many of the newcomers she is a lady and a woman who has seen much of the world and yet at her advanced years you would be surprised how she anticipates every wish of the Doctor's and how devoted she is to him whoever is there. She will not in any way neglect â??Dom Pedroâ?? as I call him. Mrs King of Brooklands is another very nice person, and very friendly. There are two vessels in sight bound for Wellington. I will not send my boxes by them as

Page 6 of 8. View high-resolution image

English (MD)

I have a great many papers and accounts yet to arrange. I have one and two clerks hard at work getting up the correspondence and records of the Police Department to transfer to Mr Cooper. Unfortunately I cannot get the cask of butter for you that I expected. It has become a very scarce article otherwise it should be sent now. I have just been reading a morning psalm and I feel how much cheerfulness, dignity and confidence some of these beautiful verses give to a person. Endeavour my own puss to make the Bible your delight and do not forget that on our marriage we both consecrated ourselves to the Almighty. I was

Page 7 of 8. View high-resolution image

English (MD)

sorry to hear of Mr Kirton's illness, also of Mrs Hickson's. I trust you give an occasional look to my clothes and shoes and that you keep things in good order in the house. Send me word as to what you would like to get made at Taranaki for the house. That sideboard or whatever you call that press in the little room is shabby. Will you let me order a new one for you or is there anything else you would prefer.

I am glad you have planted the flowers over poor Mama's grave. I wish I had been with you when you were doing so. The various descriptions you give of yourself and your occupations and visits are pleasing to me, and the attention

Page 8 of 8. View high-resolution image

English (MD)

with which you always write gives me increasing confidence of your affectionate and amiable qualities.

I do not see why you should address your letters to Whanganui. It is wrong your doing so because if I was at Whanganui they would not of course send them on here as it is you should always address them to the most distant place and not stupidly prevent me by such ill-judged arrangements from receiving your letters. The Whanganui postmaster will keep the letters there and they will be of no use to me when I am within 3 days of home. The native chiefs are beginning to come in. Mr Gudgeon is also calling up on me about the farm. It is quite a business day.


God bless you my dearest Ever your own
Donald McLean

English (MD)

Taranaki
Augt 7 1852


My dearest Douglas

The receipt of two letters from you and one from Papa by today's mail has given me the greatest satisfaction and I feel so grateful and thankful to the Almighty for the good health you enjoy. I should like very much my own puss that we could be together on the 28th, the anniversary of our marriage, but I fear this cannot be accomplished nor can I say positively on what date I shall get back to Wellington.

You need not suppose that I shall delay an hour longer than duty requires. It is not so agreeable to me to be separated from my own pet and to be deprived of her kind attention as well as of her sensible and entertaining conversation. Your affection for poor Mama is a guarantee for your being a devoted and loving wife and I can fully appreciate and enter into my pussy's feelings when she talks of her departed mother in such a religious and proper manner. She certainly would not be pleased did she consider that you would do anything unbecoming, undignified or that would in any way displease Mama [crossed out] Papa, or myself, but my dearest we have a greater power to fear than our departed friends even if they preside over us, and that is the fear of the Almighty sovereign of the universe who sees us at all times and who is present to aid those who put their trust and confidence in Him. I pray that He may always guard and direct you through all your earthly pilgrimage and to His protecting arm I confide you humbly hoping that you are not forgetful that the health and every blessing you now enjoy proceeds from him.

Taranaki is much improved as regards society. There are now people here of a very superior class but I do not visit much among the strangers beyond occasional calls. I go chiefly to Capt King's, Dr Wilson's and a few of my old and good friends. I am glad you have escaped the prevailing influenza at Wellington. The Govetts have suffered most by it here but that has been owing chiefly to the badly constructed house they live in there being no no ventilation. So you see I was deeply interested in your health when I advocated ventilation so much at home. We have a most excellent library here with the most recent works, newspapers and periodicals. In that respect they are far in advance of Wellington.

Mr Halse and Cooper have just come in from a party so I shall ado no more until Monday, tomorrow being Sunday.

Monday 9th August
I have perused your letters over and over again and I feel so happy that Papa takes such good care of you. The Govetts are quite well again or nearly so. Mrs Wilson frequently asks for you but I fancy she thinks you have slighted her by not writing. I should feel exceedingly vexed if I felt this was really the case as she is as much superior to some of your Wellington friends as you are to most of them yourself and she is not unlike you in some of her ways making due allowance for her being old and grey headed. She evidently takes the lead in society here. Notwithstanding the wealth and respectability of many of the newcomers she is a lady and a woman who has seen much of the world and yet at her advanced years you would be surprised how she anticipates every wish of the Doctor's and how devoted she is to him whoever is there. She will not in any way neglect â??Dom Pedroâ?? as I call him. Mrs King of Brooklands is another very nice person, and very friendly. There are two vessels in sight bound for Wellington. I will not send my boxes by them as I have a great many papers and accounts yet to arrange. I have one and two clerks hard at work getting up the correspondence and records of the Police Department to transfer to Mr Cooper. Unfortunately I cannot get the cask of butter for you that I expected. It has become a very scarce article otherwise it should be sent now. I have just been reading a morning psalm and I feel how much cheerfulness, dignity and confidence some of these beautiful verses give to a person. Endeavour my own puss to make the Bible your delight and do not forget that on our marriage we both consecrated ourselves to the Almighty. I was sorry to hear of Mr Kirton's illness, also of Mrs Hickson's. I trust you give an occasional look to my clothes and shoes and that you keep things in good order in the house. Send me word as to what you would like to get made at Taranaki for the house. That sideboard or whatever you call that press in the little room is shabby. Will you let me order a new one for you or is there anything else you would prefer.

I am glad you have planted the flowers over poor Mama's grave. I wish I had been with you when you were doing so. The various descriptions you give of yourself and your occupations and visits are pleasing to me, and the attention with which you always write gives me increasing confidence of your affectionate and amiable qualities.

I do not see why you should address your letters to Whanganui. It is wrong your doing so because if I was at Whanganui they would not of course send them on here as it is you should always address them to the most distant place and not stupidly prevent me by such ill-judged arrangements from receiving your letters. The Whanganui postmaster will keep the letters there and they will be of no use to me when I am within 3 days of home. The native chiefs are beginning to come in. Mr Gudgeon is also calling up on me about the farm. It is quite a business day.


God bless you my dearest Ever your own
Donald McLean

Part of:
Inward family correspondence - Susan McLean (wife), Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0828 (82 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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