Object #1010180 from MS-Papers-0032-0826

6 pages written 14 Jul 1850 by Susan Douglas McLean in Wellington to Sir Donald McLean

From: Inward and outward family correspondence - Susan McLean (wife), Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0826 (43 digitised items). Mainly letters between Susan Strang and her future husband Donald McLean. Includes a letter from her mother Susannah Strang to McLean, 1849; letter from E Shand to Susan Strang, written from Portobello, 1850 in which she gives her impressions of Dunedin

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

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Page 1 of 6. View high-resolution image

English (MD)

14 July 1850

Dalmuir Hill

My dear McLean

Papa and Mama have gone to sleep and as I sat at work just now I wish very much that you were here to talk to me but since you are not here I shall sit down and write instead although you do not deserve a letter for not having written by the last mail. I must not scold however. I know that it was not from neglect and I am sure you would have written had it been convenient. In your last letter you expressed a wish to know what

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English (MD)

my employments and amusements have been since you left. They are much the same as when you were here. My occupations principally consist in sewing and attending to some of the household duties. I have really at last got a great part of Mrs Durie's collar done so you must not again give her such a bad character of me. I have not forgotten what you told her and I am determined that the first time you ask me to hem a handkerchief I shall refuse to do it as a punishment for saying that I procrastinate. The weather and roads have been so bad that it has prevented me from walking much so that my only amusement has been reading. I walked as far as Mrs Kelham's today. It was the

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English (MD)

first time I have been out for ten days as it has rained almost constantly. I do not think I ever saw such a continuation of rain.

You said in your letter that you hope I am happy. I am sure I would be very discontented if I were not so for I have every thing that I can wish in this world. I enjoy good health, I have a kind father and mother, and in you I have a friend on whose affection I can place the greatest reliance but I fear I too often forget Him who has given me all these blessings which I do so little deserve and how sinful I have been often to murmur and grieve for some trifle when God has given me so much to make me happy. Why did you ask me to forgive

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English (MD)

the advice you gave me about listening to scandal? I am sure you must know that I am always willing to take it from you but you need not fear that I will ever pay any attention to gossip and scandal for there is nothing I dislike more. We have no right to talk of our neighbour's affairs and faults. We ought to look to our own first.

I must now conclude my letter as it is very late and I wish to get up early in the morning. I hope you will be able to read this as I never can see to write well at night, and in hopes of hearing from you by the next mail.

Believe me my dear McLean
Your affectionate

Susan D Strang

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English (MD)


I received your letter this afternoon which I am glad to get in time to add a few lines in answer. You must have got the memorandum books ere this as Papa sent them last Monday. It is a pity as you required them so much that I did not receive your letter in time to send them by the first mail.

We called for Mrs Eyre a fortnight since but did not see her as she was very unwell. She has I understand suffered a great deal lately from several colds.

The two balls which I mentioned have not taken place. The public ball I have heard no more of. I suppose they do not intend to get it up now and Mrs Fitzherbert's party is postponed.

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English (MD)

You will be happy to hear that Papa had a letter from Mr Shand today telling us of Mrs Shand's safe arrival at Otago after a long and disagreeable passage. Poor Mrs Shand must have suffered a great deal as she is always seasick. I must now bid you goodnight as Mama wishes me to do something for her and it is very late. Mama sends her kind regards


And believe me
Yours affectionately
Susan D Strang

Saturday night

English (MD)

14 July 1850

Dalmuir Hill

My dear McLean

Papa and Mama have gone to sleep and as I sat at work just now I wish very much that you were here to talk to me but since you are not here I shall sit down and write instead although you do not deserve a letter for not having written by the last mail. I must not scold however. I know that it was not from neglect and I am sure you would have written had it been convenient. In your last letter you expressed a wish to know what my employments and amusements have been since you left. They are much the same as when you were here. My occupations principally consist in sewing and attending to some of the household duties. I have really at last got a great part of Mrs Durie's collar done so you must not again give her such a bad character of me. I have not forgotten what you told her and I am determined that the first time you ask me to hem a handkerchief I shall refuse to do it as a punishment for saying that I procrastinate. The weather and roads have been so bad that it has prevented me from walking much so that my only amusement has been reading. I walked as far as Mrs Kelham's today. It was the first time I have been out for ten days as it has rained almost constantly. I do not think I ever saw such a continuation of rain.

You said in your letter that you hope I am happy. I am sure I would be very discontented if I were not so for I have every thing that I can wish in this world. I enjoy good health, I have a kind father and mother, and in you I have a friend on whose affection I can place the greatest reliance but I fear I too often forget Him who has given me all these blessings which I do so little deserve and how sinful I have been often to murmur and grieve for some trifle when God has given me so much to make me happy. Why did you ask me to forgive the advice you gave me about listening to scandal? I am sure you must know that I am always willing to take it from you but you need not fear that I will ever pay any attention to gossip and scandal for there is nothing I dislike more. We have no right to talk of our neighbour's affairs and faults. We ought to look to our own first.

I must now conclude my letter as it is very late and I wish to get up early in the morning. I hope you will be able to read this as I never can see to write well at night, and in hopes of hearing from you by the next mail.

Believe me my dear McLean
Your affectionate

Susan D Strang

I received your letter this afternoon which I am glad to get in time to add a few lines in answer. You must have got the memorandum books ere this as Papa sent them last Monday. It is a pity as you required them so much that I did not receive your letter in time to send them by the first mail.

We called for Mrs Eyre a fortnight since but did not see her as she was very unwell. She has I understand suffered a great deal lately from several colds.

The two balls which I mentioned have not taken place. The public ball I have heard no more of. I suppose they do not intend to get it up now and Mrs Fitzherbert's party is postponed. You will be happy to hear that Papa had a letter from Mr Shand today telling us of Mrs Shand's safe arrival at Otago after a long and disagreeable passage. Poor Mrs Shand must have suffered a great deal as she is always seasick. I must now bid you goodnight as Mama wishes me to do something for her and it is very late. Mama sends her kind regards


And believe me
Yours affectionately
Susan D Strang

Saturday night

Part of:
Inward and outward family correspondence - Susan McLean (wife), Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0826 (43 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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