F&M 6/V/2/12                                                1859 01 20 WR to Sisters Honolulu

 

Honolulu January 20, 1859

 

My Dear Sisters

 

  On New Year day we recıd the mail of Nov 20th 41 days from New York, bringing us letters from Elly, Jenny, Father Krug, Beck Reeves & Elizabeth Steinman, a very welcome & pleasant event to usher in Anno dimino 1859.

 

  It is custom here to keep open house on New Years day, and receive gentlemen callers.  We had our table of fish salad, mixed by Wm Reynolds after a German  ladies recipe and quite a success, cakes, iced punch rum & brandy particularly compounded and much admired and ham sandwiches made by chopping the meat up fine and dressing a la salad!  We had about 60 visitors from 11 a.m. until tea time.

 

  I paid a few visits to neighbors having Onlinger (as the Ancient Mariner) to drag me about in a little hand carriage, and came home between times to help Rebecca.  We both  I enjoyed the day exceedingly and after tea when the visiting was ended, we sat down to take a satisfactory reading of the letters, which we had only nibbled at before.

 

  Yesterday the mail of Dec 6th arrived with letters from Elly, John Krug & the Marshalls – also the Presidents message 44 days from New York.

 

  Jennyıs  letter communicated the intelligence of the precocious prosperity of the infant Reynolds Landis for conversing in rhyme, and as a specimen his profane address to ³Aunt Ele teedle tell go to Hell!²  I fear he must have picked up such epithets in his frequent visits to the Naval asylum.  What an amusing little fellow he must be – I wish we could enjoy his company at times – I made a request in a letter of some months back, that you would have his daguerreotype taken in patent leather and send it out in a letter?  Will you try and accomplish this if practicable.

 

  It would have been gratifying news if we could have learned that Mr. Evans had found a farm in Chester Co. to suit him.  I hope eventually he may settle East of the Mountains and in time acceptable & pleasant neighborhood to repay them all for their long Siberian Exile in Clarion.

 

  We are glad that George prospers in his business & that they remain in their home, and wish he may succeed so well as to put Western thoughts out of his prospects.  It is sad the hard times did not catch him out there, a new settler.  What is there in the atmosphere of Baltimore to rid Hal of headaches?  I have no doubts of the greater healthiness of that part of Baltimore.  When George lives over the whole of Philadelphia it is hilly and breezy whereas that slice of low land sandwiched between Schuylkill & Delaware is hot, moist fevery &c &c.

 

  I wrote to Sam by last mail requesting him on receipt of any funds from the Estate on my accıt without delay to transmit a check for the amt to B. W. Field care of H. A. Peirce of Commercial Wharf Boston with directions to him to forward the same to me, by Earliest offering.  In case my letter to him did not come to hand, will you please copy the above directions and send to Sam.  I hope Mr. Evans will be able to sell his stock of pig metal at good price on all accounts.  An addition to our means will be very receptacle as our expenses are very heavy and we shall not be able to get along at all, but that I was so fortunateous to invest my spare cash at high rates.

 

  My leg is doing well.  I ride on horseback every forenoon and walk ¼ of a mile or more every P.M. with a slight use of the crutch -- about the house I can move without a crutch or cane.  The large muscle is gradually coming into play, but is still stiff and enlarged and I suppose some months will lapse ere I can kick freely and strongly with my starboard leg.  But I rejoice in my present measure of locomotion and in my increase of flesh -- I now weigh 145 lbs moderately clothed 15 lbs more than 8 months at Lancaster with lager bear & oysters & winter garments sufficed to bring about.  And I never weighed so much at anytime here in Honolulu -- at Kauai.  My heaviest was 146 under every advantage of exercise Nuf sed.

 

  Rebeccas shawl is very much admired she went to an evening company with Jennyıs sleeves on, and will ornament herself with the others on Sunday & holidays.  The postage scales are very useful and just what I wanted & had tried to buy here in vain.

 

  With much love to all, and wishing you much good during the year 1859.

 

                                                                        Ever affectionately

                                                                                    Your brother

                                                                                                William

 

Miss E. Reynolds

   and sisters

                        1829 Spruce Street

                        Philadelphia