William Macky to Thomas Macky(Endorsed Recd January 1851)
September 13th, 1849
We received yours of the 26th February on the 26th July (so it was just five months in coming) and were much rejoiced to hear of your safe arrival in Auckland. You must excuse me for not writing to you sooner but as you mentioned you would write to me soon I delayed in hope of soon hearing from you. And Rebecca wrote to you so she gave as much news as I could.
I am glad that you like the country so well as you do and that James and Ann and the children are well and were glad to see you. Rebecca also had a letter from you and one enclosed for Kitty which she forwarded to her at Cootehill where she has been living for some time. You mentioned Kitty in my father's letter. He was a good deal surprised at it though not much displeased. He said if he had known of it before you went away he would have tried for her to go out along with you. However it is not too late for she is well inclined to go.
The city house is no more. They have failed and Mills has gone to America. Mr Cochrane has married Miss Cowan in spite of them all and is gone to America also. Joe is still in Derry settling the affairs. I do not know what he intends doing. I think the Christlaugh people have lost by them I do not know how much. Donnell is to be married to Miss Running this day. John is to go to Armagh to marry them. He soon forgot Kitty. She is to be at the wedding. Donnell gets £200 with her, he is a canny blade. He would not have got that with Kitty.
Uncle Dunn died on the 4th August last after about one month's illness. They have been trying to sell the farm but it is not sold. My father had a letter from Thompson Dysart-- he is in New Brunswick. He gave a description of the country but not one word about himself only that he is as well as he should wish and better than he deserves. I think he is greatly changed for the better. He also wrote to John about a minister going out there. Think of Thompson Dysart writing about religion.
John Cochrane is about to get married to Miss Thompson. His father is greatly opposed to it but he will go through with it if he can. And then he intends going to New Zealand with her if he gets encouragement from you.
The potatoes are going this year again but I think not so bad as other years. They have not been attacked so early and they were in general earlier in the ground. Markets are however very cheap-- new corn 8d to 9d per stone, wheat 16/- to 18/- per barrel, so it will not be easy making up high rents.
Times are very bad in Ireland just now and no appearance of mending. We have a good many turnips set this year, four acres at home manured and seven acres on Kilfennan on Guano. They all look very well. Indeed, all our crops look well. Hay will in all likelihood be very cheap this year and cattle and their produce is very low. Butter was selling as low as from 4d to 7d per pound and lower.
Now having told you all the news that would interest you it is time to write of our prospects. You mentioned having spoken to James about us going out there and that he thought well of it. But they think that they might be as well not to leave home right now in their old days, but to sell one of the places and live on the other. There would be a good deal of hardships to encounter in a settler's life in a new country which they at their age could not stand well. Besides, land is so high and labour so expensive that it might not be a good spec. You will see by the papers that Coshquin is advertised for sale on the 22nd September and if it can be got sold they intend to go and live in Kilfennan where I think they can live easy during the remainder of their lives. And I hope that before nine months I will be with you in New Zealand. There is no prospect for me to stop here but to work all my lifetime for nothing and I think there will be nothing to hinder my father to manage Kilfennan well enough himself and we might be able to send him some assistance.
Kitty has written to Rebecca that when she hears from you again she will be ready to go out any time so you will be likely to see her and I walking in to you some morning. Then if James had anything for me to do, well, but if not if there is five shillings per day for labourers I cannot be far beaten. It is likely John Cochrane will be with us-- he is expecting a letter from you.
All your old friends desire to be mentioned to you. They all expect you will write to them. They all think more of you than you appear to think of them as you have never mentioned one of them in your letter. I may mentioned John Cochrane, G Mooney, T Martin, J Andrews and particularly Mr Reed of Culmore desires much to be mentioned to you. All the Wallaces desire to be remembered to you. Kilfennan, Gallaugh and Glenlough people, also father and mother and Dorcas join with me in kind love to you and to James, Ann, and all the children, and may God Almighty bless and prosper you all is the prayer of
Your affectionate brother