Object #1010326 from MS-Papers-0032-0827

6 pages written 3 May 1851 by Susan Douglas McLean in Wellington to Sir Donald McLean

From: Inward family correspondence - Susan McLean (wife), Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0827 (34 digitised items). Letters between Donald McLean and Susan. Donald's letters written from Hawke's Bay, Rangitikei, Taita and Wairapapa. Susan's letters from Dalmuir Hill, Wellington (the home of her parents (Robert and Susannah Strang).

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

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Page 1 of 6. View high-resolution image

English (MD)

Dalmuir Hill
May 3rd 1851


My dear Mr McLean

I hope you are by this time at Rangitikei and that you have received the letter I wrote by last mail. I shall be very much disappointed if I do not hear from you on Friday next as it is now more than five weeks since I received your last letter. Of course you must know dear that I do not blame you for not writing. I am perfectly aware that you have had no opportunity of doing so. It is strange the Rose has not come in yet. I hope nothing has happened to it. It is now five weeks since it left Wellington. I must now give you,

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English (MD)

as I promised, an account of Miss Redish's wedding. This day was a most beautiful day for this season when Miss Kelly and I got up at daylight. We were very much afraid it was going to be wet but it looked so threatening but by the time we were dressed the clouds had passed away and the sun began to shine. Between eight and nine Miss Dorset and Miss Hart who were to be the other two bridesmaids were up to dress and in a short time after the car came and took us down to Mr Hickson's where we found the bride ready and the bridesmen assembled. Mr Adam McDonald was the principal one. As it was such a short distance we walked to the church. Although Ellen was very nervous she behaved exceedingly well, much better than I did. I had the greatest difficulty to keep myself from crying during the ceremony. As I was principal bridesmaid I required to

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English (MD)

sign my name and I really thought I would not be able to do it. My hand trembled so much. I do not know how I could have got so nervous. Mrs Hickson was more than me. However she did not go to the church for she said she knew she would cry and disturb us all. After the marriage we returned to Mr Hickson's and had breakfast. There was no one at it besides the wedding party except Papa and Mama. Captain and Mrs Sharp had been invited but Mrs Sharp was unwell and Captain Sharp had an engagement which prevented him going. Ellen was quite right to invite no one else for I think weddings are much better to be quiet. When the breakfast was over all the wedding party went up to the Hutt where Mr Hickson had ordered dinner at the inn at the Taita. Ellen told me some days before her marriage that this had been arranged and I told her that I thought it would be much better

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English (MD)

if she were to be married later and have the breakfast about 1 or two o'clock for I did not much like the plan of going to the Hutt but she said that her uncle had made up his mind to have the dinner and she did not like to say anything against it. I enclose you wedding cards. Ellen told me that when I was addressing them to her other friends not to forget to address cards for you. I was obliged to go to Mrs Kelham's ball after all. I asked her to excuse me which seemed to offend her very much so I found I could not help going. It was far from being at a pleasant party. It was so crowded. I forgot if I told you in my last letter that the dance was to be in the Company's offices. It was nonsense to have invited so many people for such small rooms. I did not stay late. As Papa was not there I came home with Mr Stokes a short time after supper. I am surprised that a great many of the ladies

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English (MD)

did not take colds for the dancing room was so very warm and the other room in which we sat between the dances had all the windows open. I have not been well ever since. I caught a bad cold which confined me to bed the next day. I trust I shall not be asked to go to any more balls for sometime except the Governor's and to that I shall feel much pleasure in going if you are with me. Who do you think is going to be married on Wednesday next? Dr Forbes and Miss Murray . I was not surprised when I heard of it for I suspected long ago that he was fond of her. He was constantly going to Porirua when the Murrays were there, and at parties he always paid her so much attention. I hear that the reason the marriage is to take place so soon is because the Acheron is to leave soon and it may not return

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English (MD)

here again. She is going home to England in the vessel with him. Major Durie took breakfast with us this morning. He bid us good bye as it was his last visit to Wellington. I had a note from Mrs Durie. She said she would have liked to come in to see her friends before going to Whanganui but she could not do it on account of the children. I must now conclude for I am so sleepy that I scarcely know what I am writing. Good night dear and believe me to remain


Ever your affectionate
Susan D Strang

[Note on transcription: Charles Forbes married Henrietta Augusta Murray on 7 May 1851 at St Paul's Church.]

English (MD)

Dalmuir Hill
May 3rd 1851


My dear Mr McLean

I hope you are by this time at Rangitikei and that you have received the letter I wrote by last mail. I shall be very much disappointed if I do not hear from you on Friday next as it is now more than five weeks since I received your last letter. Of course you must know dear that I do not blame you for not writing. I am perfectly aware that you have had no opportunity of doing so. It is strange the Rose has not come in yet. I hope nothing has happened to it. It is now five weeks since it left Wellington. I must now give you, as I promised, an account of Miss Redish's wedding. This day was a most beautiful day for this season when Miss Kelly and I got up at daylight. We were very much afraid it was going to be wet but it looked so threatening but by the time we were dressed the clouds had passed away and the sun began to shine. Between eight and nine Miss Dorset and Miss Hart who were to be the other two bridesmaids were up to dress and in a short time after the car came and took us down to Mr Hickson's where we found the bride ready and the bridesmen assembled. Mr Adam McDonald was the principal one. As it was such a short distance we walked to the church. Although Ellen was very nervous she behaved exceedingly well, much better than I did. I had the greatest difficulty to keep myself from crying during the ceremony. As I was principal bridesmaid I required to sign my name and I really thought I would not be able to do it. My hand trembled so much. I do not know how I could have got so nervous. Mrs Hickson was more than me. However she did not go to the church for she said she knew she would cry and disturb us all. After the marriage we returned to Mr Hickson's and had breakfast. There was no one at it besides the wedding party except Papa and Mama. Captain and Mrs Sharp had been invited but Mrs Sharp was unwell and Captain Sharp had an engagement which prevented him going. Ellen was quite right to invite no one else for I think weddings are much better to be quiet. When the breakfast was over all the wedding party went up to the Hutt where Mr Hickson had ordered dinner at the inn at the Taita. Ellen told me some days before her marriage that this had been arranged and I told her that I thought it would be much better if she were to be married later and have the breakfast about 1 or two o'clock for I did not much like the plan of going to the Hutt but she said that her uncle had made up his mind to have the dinner and she did not like to say anything against it. I enclose you wedding cards. Ellen told me that when I was addressing them to her other friends not to forget to address cards for you. I was obliged to go to Mrs Kelham's ball after all. I asked her to excuse me which seemed to offend her very much so I found I could not help going. It was far from being at a pleasant party. It was so crowded. I forgot if I told you in my last letter that the dance was to be in the Company's offices. It was nonsense to have invited so many people for such small rooms. I did not stay late. As Papa was not there I came home with Mr Stokes a short time after supper. I am surprised that a great many of the ladies did not take colds for the dancing room was so very warm and the other room in which we sat between the dances had all the windows open. I have not been well ever since. I caught a bad cold which confined me to bed the next day. I trust I shall not be asked to go to any more balls for sometime except the Governor's and to that I shall feel much pleasure in going if you are with me. Who do you think is going to be married on Wednesday next? Dr Forbes and Miss Murray . I was not surprised when I heard of it for I suspected long ago that he was fond of her. He was constantly going to Porirua when the Murrays were there, and at parties he always paid her so much attention. I hear that the reason the marriage is to take place so soon is because the Acheron is to leave soon and it may not return here again. She is going home to England in the vessel with him. Major Durie took breakfast with us this morning. He bid us good bye as it was his last visit to Wellington. I had a note from Mrs Durie. She said she would have liked to come in to see her friends before going to Whanganui but she could not do it on account of the children. I must now conclude for I am so sleepy that I scarcely know what I am writing. Good night dear and believe me to remain


Ever your affectionate
Susan D Strang

[Note on transcription: Charles Forbes married Henrietta Augusta Murray on 7 May 1851 at St Paul's Church.]

Part of:
Inward family correspondence - Susan McLean (wife), Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0827 (34 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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