Bally bay

                                                               Dec 15th/96


My Dearest Sally[2],

               I am here nursing poor Cready[3] in a bad attack of bronchitis.  Dr. Bartley[4] is attending her and does not expect her to recover.  However she is wonderful and may pull through for all that.  She has been ill this long time with water on the left lung but would not allow you to be told so as not to keep you fretting  She sat up in bed to address the papers always till last Saturday She made her will in Oct. Wrote it out herself and I am sure it is a funny production.  I was here for a while early in Nov. and went home leaving her greatly better but she must have got more cold for Maggie[5] sent up Mattie[6] to Urker[7] to stay in my place so that I could come at once, on Saturday last.  They thought she would not live many hours then and now she is a little better and breathes pretty freely.  I was glad to see your long letter.

    People here are all in grief about Mrs. Hamilton[8], wife to Mr. Whiteside's successor[9] in D Valley.  She took ill on Sunday evg with peritonitis & died in about a week I think the Tuesday week after she lay down.  She suffered agony and had to be kept under the influence of morphia all the time.  She was a lovely young creature and as good as she was beautiful.  She was only 23« years old.  Mr. Hamilton has gone to Clifden in Galway where her friends live for a change.  How will he bear to come back to his desolate home!  Tom Brown[10] has gone to Bankok in rather delicate health.  He fears his lungs are affected.  He had to go as he was principal witness in some law proceeding.  Minnie[11] and her family (all but Julius[12], who is left in England at school) had reached Port Said in safety on their way to Hong Kong.

    Mollie[13] is still in Armagh but is to be home tomorrow  Mattie[14] and she will have great times together.  The Blockaders[15] have left Cross[16] and gone to Saintfield[17] and Mr. Bates[18] has been made manager in Cross[19].  We are glad to have James[20] & he instead of strangers.  Sarah[21] Jane[22] and Essie[23] are all a feeble party.  Essie is fat but her heart is not acting right & the other two are skeleton.

Boyd[24] has improved D.Valley[25] greatly, but has cut down a lot of trees, all the little plantation at the Railway bridge is gone, about the house the hedges are neatly clipped & the house done up inside and out.  I hear new floors upstairs.

    Fond love to all

         from your own

              Mary Griffin[26]

[1] Often spelled “Drummuck”

[2] Sarah McCullagh Whiteside

[3] Mary Anne McCREADY (?-1897), governess.

[4] Dr. BARTLEY ?

[5] Margaret (Jackson) (Reid) McCullagh

[6] Maud “Mattie” Elizabeth Reed, daughter of Margaret (Jackson) Reed

[7] Urker, Crossmaglen, where Mary GRIFFIN lived.

[8] She was Miss JONES of Clifden (see Full Circle, p. 352)

[9] Rev. James HAMILTON (b. Dec 7, 1864)

[10] Thompson Brown?, husband of  Elizabeth Jackson or Thompson Brown jr. husband of  Martha Wright? Most likely the first.

[11] Amelia Lydia Dare, wife of Sir Thomas Jackson of HSBC.

[12] George Julius Jackson, son of Sir Thomas Jackson

[13] Likely “Mollie” Mary MENARY, Daughter of Mary GRIFFIN (née JACKSON and first husband MENARY). Less likely to be Mary McCullagh  (who would marry Thomas Dare Jackson) – daughter of Margaret (Jackson) McCullagh

[14] Maud Elizabeth Reed, daughter of Margaret (Jackson) Reed

[15] Blockaders – I assume this is some sort of protesting political group. Perhaps others can help me here.

[16] Crossmaglen, Co. Armagh.

[17] Saintfield, Co. Down

[18] William BATES, husband of Jane CLEMENTS (part of the GILMORE line). The Bates name comes up in Jeannie Moorhead’s Birthday Book

[19] Crossmaglen, CO. Armagh

[20]possibly  James McCULLAGH son of James McCULLAGH and Eliza WALLACE

[21] Sarah McCULLAGH, daughter of James McCULLAGH and Eliza WALLACE

[22] Jane McCULLAGH, daughter of James McCULLAGH and Eliza WALLACE

[23] Essie McCULLAGH, daughter of James McCULLAGH and Eliza WALLACE

[24] BOYD?

[25] Derryvalley, Co Monaghan

[26] Mary (Jackson) (Menary) Griffin