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This is one of the 77 bog letters. NEWS: thanks to Thomas for the support he gives the family and mentions of whom the money has helped; Eliza's theology; Cavananore mention.
Sharon Oddie Brown. October 4, 2006
Updated March 2, 2010. footnote additions.

Urker Oct 6th 1880


My dearest Son, Your long and satisfactory letter of Aug 9th arrived safely; I cannot express the pleasure its every statement gave me; especially that you were saving money for yourself; a thing I meantime was doubtful about. I have just one word to say – Provide for the next life as well as for this. Be not like the sick men in Scriptures; who said that he had enough goods laid up for many years; when the awful sentence went forth “This night thy soul shall be required of thee”. Your dear little wife [1] will, I firmly believe, be a help & comfort to you both in spiritual & temporal. May God bless her! She is the kindest of daughters to me; & never neglects me. I do believe that I am one of the happiest women in the world; not one of my children is either a shame or a grief to me; and I am surrounded with every comfort that I desire. I have enough for myself; & am able besides to help those who are in need. There is not one of the connections that I have not helped; except those who required nothing. I gave the McCullaghs [2] of Drummuck two bonuses this year. They were very thankful. Father [3] & I went to see them last week. Poor James [4] will most probably never be better. It would be a mercy if he was at rest; for the others are surely worn out attending him. The debts that were the burden and plague of my life; are now all paid. Everything is settled except the rent of Urker & I have the means of paying that; but am waiting for the lease to be perfected; of which there is good hope at present. I never hoarded a shilling in my life; nor never intend to do so. All I ever saved for, was to pay debts; & to buy things that were required. I intend to divide all that I can spare every year; and then no one will be wishing for my death. Aunt Donaldson’s [5] money & the insurance money I cannot touch. Those sums will be a little remembrance of me when I go; but nothing to wish me gone for. My dear Son you have made the latter years of my life, happy & comfortable; what the earlier ones were not; & I have now nothing to wish for but the conversion of my Husband & children. If I once saw that accomplished, I could say with old Simeon “Lord now lettest thy servant depart in peace” [6] . You are perfectly right not think of coming home till you come for good. the travelling expenses as you say; would be ruinous; & when God has given you such good health you may take it as a token that He intends you to remain where you are. You are able to do well for yourself, & for the concern that employs you; & many a heart besides you have made to sing for joy. Ten thousand times ten thousand blessings will be on you and your descendents to the latest generation. And though the old head is as grey as Peggy [7] told you; the heart is as stout as it ever was, & the health as good. Old Ironsides to the last.


            Cavananore’s [8] business helped to make the head grey. I am ashamed of myself that any thing in this life should vex me so much. I should have had more trust in God. I would not now change places with anyone, who had a hand in that villainy. All have got some punishment, more or less. Even Cousin Sam [9] is heartily tired of his bargain, & is losing by it; but do not drop a hint of this to Mrs. Woods [10] , if she calls with you on her way home.


            Everyone has got their part of what you sent; as I suppose you will see by the cheques; one thing not returned to you. Peggy thought to invest hers; but some things occurred which made it required at home. All are doing well, thanks be to God. I am writing to Minnie by this mail; and will give her all the news I have, which is but little. Crops are splendid this year; but prices low as yet. Last year was unfavourable to Johnny [11] , but Kate [12] writes that they hope this year will be much better. With love & blessing ever your affectionate & grateful Mother

            Eliza Jackson

PS. I have not heard from David [13] for a long time.

[1] Amelia Lydia DARE

[2] Probably the McCULLAGHs of James McCULLAGH & Eliza WALLACE of Ednafirkin and Drummuck Cottage.

[3] David JACKSON (1814-1889)

[4] Possibly the James McCULLAGH who was the son of James McCULLAGH & Eliza WALLACE. He died 1892..

[5] Barbara BRADFORD (1783-1865), wife of William DONALDSON.

[6] Luke 2:29

[7] Margaret (JACKSON) REED – sister of Sir Thomas JACKSON

[8] Cavananore, Co. Louth – townland at centre of bitter land dispute in the family.

[9] Samuel BRADFORD (1846-1914) son of Thomas BRADFORD and Margaret WALLACE..

[10] Mrs. WOODS? – possibly Eleanor BRADFORD who married John WOOD.- one of the Carnbeg BRADFORDS. She would be a sister of Samuel BRADFORD (1846-1914).

[11] John JACKSON – older brother of Sir Thomas JACKSON

[12] Kate Maria Jane WHITING, wife of John JACKSON who was Sir Thomas JACKSON’s older brother.

[13] David JACKSON, youngest surviving brother of Sir Thomas JACKSON



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