June 29/94


Dear Sally[2],

          Excuse me for not writing sooner but Miss McCready[3] rote so often and gave you all the news I did not know what to write about  she is a good bit failed but as crabit as ever in turns.  I hope you enjoyed your pick-nick party you did not take a d-m-d gorge like B.H.  I have all the old hands working yet. Mrs Green[4] has her son Hugh[5] home again from America he is in bad health.  We have got all crop in with enough to do for we had a backward spring not more than six dry days at a time and a very frosty May cold and wet up to near the middle of June  crops are just beginning to look like growing now  this season is a full month later than last  we had good crops last year the flax turned out well and the price was good & payed well but I think this year will be as bad [forment] it only about four inches long on an average.  the garden is a wilderness again with an odd flower and a few good roses.  Nobody goes near it only Miss McCready & (Sally[6] cuts the rough grass) & she stands and chops away with the rake here and there between the flowers  she has her own way of gardening and you might not say a word or she would fly up and be at rest  we had Miss Olivia[7] stopping here a fortnight or three weeks they do not pull well together like two sisters Miss McCready was disgusted with her sitting up moping and reading turn about she ought to have been working for the Lussanas[8]  I suppose you heard old Thomas Miller[9] the fiddler was dead and gone to rest  I wonder will he want his fiddle in the next world like the harpers.  we had Mr. Sam Carlile[10] over here on a visit of patronage  we are still supplying the old customers with butter and Sally[11] has a busy time now as we have a good deal for the market it s from five pence to seven pence a pound so that pays well only there is no dressing to do as we sell it fresh in lumps  she has a good flock of young chickens and turks and ducks doing well for so far  finding I cannot conceive or bring forth any more news at present but hoping to be more prolific in the future I remain ever your loving brother



P.S. Give my love and best wishes to Mr. Whiteside[13] and the son and may God bless you all  Amen and Amen


[1] Derryvalley, Co. Monaghan – home of McCULLAGHs.

[2] Sarah (McCullagh) Whiteside (1852-1939)

[3] Miss Mary Anne McCREADY– the governess for McCULLAGHs  (?-1897)

[4] Mrs GREEN?

[5] Hugh GREEN?

[6] Which “Sally”?

[7] Olivia McCREADY, sister of Mary Anne McCREADY.

[8] What are the “Lussanas”?

[9] Thomas MILLER?

[10] There is a reference to a Sam Carlile in “At the Ford of the Birches”. The original is also difficult to decipher.

[11] Sally?

[12] James McCULLAGH (?-1913), brother to Sarah “Sallie” (née  McCULLAGH) WHITESIDE

[13] William Sherlock WHITESIDE – husband of Sallie McCULLAGH