Updated 25 Nov 2003

WIRKSWORTH Parish Records 1600-1900

Return to Front Page

Letters from Eliza Dorothy Doxey (1806-1888).

These are extracts from letters in my possession written by Eliza Dorothy DOXEY, my GGGrandmother. She was born at Ashford-in-the-Water in 1806 and died at Matlock in 1888. They are written to her 20 year old grandson in Sheffield, of whom she was very fond. She was living in Matlock with her son and family, at the top of Bank Road (then Dob Lane) at the corner with New Street. Dob Lane was very steep (1 in 6), probably too steep for her to climb at 80. Her son William was Clerk of the Works at Smedleys Hydro, and helped design the tramway up Bank Road.

Letter 1

                                     Matlock Bank Dec 17 1885
Dear Alfred,

           I have written part of a letter a week ago and lost
it. I have so little time for I do not get up until breakfast
is ready, and I am tired after I have done up after dinner,
and lay down on the sofa for an hour at least and the days are
so short that I seem to have no time to write to you. Walter
has been at home all week with a bad gathered finger, but it
is now almost well and he went to work this morning. He has
had very bad weather to begin with but he stands it bravely
and I think he will get on. I often think of your wet long
journeys and not at home like hens but you are now battling
with the world and I think you will come off well. Dear Alfred
commeth your way unto the Lord and he will direct your Path
and may He give you understanding to know your duty and the
grace of the Holy Spirit to enable you to perform it.

        I am sorry to say Father has been ill, he has not
looked well some time, he is overworked. He had a very bad
cold and it seemed to settle on his lungs and he had a very
bad sore throat. To use his own words it seemed all rags. At
last he was persuaded to see Dr Hunter, he soon told him he
should not do so much work but should see that others did
more.  He is very good to him, gave him a book for treatment
and you will think it odd treatment. For his throat he was to
have 6 quarts of water poured on the back of his neck first
one hot and then the next cold and so on, and a cold pad on
his throat and a long flannel bandage round his neck at night
and one quart of cold in a morning, and it is now well. He is
to have a Turkish Bath every week or more.

          I dare say Father has told you about my poor Sister
I feel as if I had a lost something. I did not think I should
live the longest, I am the last. I am a long time in the way
but I am patiently waiting any time short or longer. God is
very good to me in my old age, Bless the Holy name and I try
to be ready when the summons shall come. I hope you will come
at the Xmas. I shall tell you more when I see you hope you are
quite well as it leaves us. Lucy has had the measles but is
now better

          Father Mother Eva and Aunt Mary are gone to Derby
this morning. It is very wet and I hope Father will not get
cold he has a bad cough yet I feel very anxious about him. If
anything was to happen to him we might all look round the
corner now all this is private be sure you do not mention it
but burn this as soon as you have read it.

          We all expect you at Xmas and hope you are well.

          Henry Turner has passed his examination and has got
a school at Brasington near Hopton. Willi Bradshaw is comming
at Christmas if they have a holiday

           with kind love I remain your affectionate


Letter 2

                                      Matlock Bank Dec 8 1884
Dear Alfred,

            We were very pleased with your letter we look
forward to your letter on Sundays or Monday morning as we do
on a cold winter day to a bright beam of sunshine dispelling
all clouds and doubt and hope seems bright and cheerful. I am
so thankful that you are able to do your work that God giveth
you health and strength to do it. I am thankful and hope you
are as well as this leaves us.
            I am sorry to say Mr Lowe is very dangerously ill,
indeed we hear that he is dead, hope it is not true.  He is
gone away to undergo a very painful and dangerous operation. A
person asked Dr Malan if it was true that he was dead, he said
that he had not heard but should not be at all surprised if it
was true. George Merchant, who used to be Mrs Smedley's
coachman, died very suddenly. Last week he seemed quite as
well as usual when he went to bed about ten o'clock and was
dead soon after eleven. They have a lodger and he ran to
fetch Dr Malan, he rang the night bell and Dr M opened the
window and asked who was there and the man said you must come
directly, George Merchant is gone out and where is he gone to
said Dr M why he is snuffed out, when he got there poor
Merchant was quite dead.

         Aunt Mary is nursing Mrs Wheatcroft, she is no
better, there is two people with her night and day. I am glad
she has got something to do she is going on a three week and
she has 15 shillings per week and her meat, they tell her that
if she gets a little better she shall go to the seaside and
your Aunt shall go with her, money is no object if they can
but get her better.

        Mr Goodlad is much better I am glad to say. Mr Burden
has had a sale of part of his furniture and gone away. John
Farnsworth at the Bridge has been sold up for debt. And now my
dear Alfred I do not like you going to such places on Sunday.
I wish you would go to Chapel or Church and place your hope
alone in Christ for through Life's stormy voyage should seas
occur He is the safest Pilot at the Helm.

       We had a soldier preaching at our chapel yesterday in
his regimentals it did not seem right to me to see a red coat
in the pulpit but he made a very good sermon and it was 1
o'clock at night when we got home there will be a service
every day this week.

       I hope we shall have a revival for we have a great need
on one the Chapel was so hot and full that we were forced to
set all doors open for air. I hope you will be able to read
this scrawl and conclude with love to you and respects to all
enquiring friends,

                       your affectionate

               Grandmother E.D.Doxey

Have you seen John Blagden yet?

They say Mr Lowe is not dead but very ill indeed.

Letter 3

           [From Eliza Dorothy Howe aged 79 to
           her grandson Alfred Doxey aged 20]
Matlock Bank

                                               Jan 22 1885
Dear Alfred,

            I now sit down to write a letter and I can assure
you you it is a great job for me; first our house is never
empty, there is always somebody in and I cannot think as I
used to do as when there is such a noise and talking in the
house. Oh for a bit of quiet. I forget all I set out to say so
you must not expect much thought or order. We were very uneasy
when we did nor receive a letter on Monday morn. ; the weather
here is terrible, we thought you were laid up with the cold,
and were thankful when your letter came saying you are better
of your plague (?) this Tec(?). I am wonderful this winter , I
have not had a cough at all and am very well for my age thank
God for his goodness, Sickness and Death hath not been
permitted to enter our dwelling.

           Aunt Mary is still at the Boathouse every other
night and day with Mrs Wheatcroft. She is no better in her
mind, there are two a man and a woman obliged to be with her
night and day and she seems to get no better. She struck Aunt
yesterday over her nose and made it bleed. One of Thompsons
girls at the bridge is out of her mind. She was living with
Rowdens as servant but I think she is getting better. Mrs
Martin's niece that was with her when Aunt was there has gone
crazy. Mrs Martin was gone away to undergo a very dangerous
operation, she has a Tumer (sic) in her stomach and the doctor
dare not cut it out it is so near her Heart, and while she was
gone Fanny went out of her mind and had to be taken home to
her mother, how she is going on I do not know.

           Mrs Wheeldon (Butcher) has been at the Wards a
month, she has hurt the drum of her ear with coughing and she
is quite deaf and had such dreadful pain that they thought she
would go out of her mind. I think she is a little better. Mr
Ward Butcher is dead it is a very sad thing they have a large
family. Mr Lowe I am glad to say is better and is coming back
soon to Matlock.

          There has been a grand Dramatic Performance at the
Market Hall by the members of the cricket club. Mathew Shawe
and Brothers were some of the performers, all the gentry in
the neighbourhood were there, tickets 2/6 2/- 1/- each the
place was crammed they say 100 could not cram in it was quite
a success. They got 20£ profit after all expenses was paid the
first night and they had a second night because there was so
many that could not get in the first night and the place was
full at half price. (Mr S?) sold nearly 5£ worth of tickets.
George Slater was comming home but they have had a letter
saying he has had a very bad Fever and been in bed 9 weeks; he
is now better and comming home as soon as he can. I thinkI
have told you all the news I can think on, and now take care
of your health and do not try to do so much and may the
Blessing of God be with you,


P.S. Please burn this when you have read it.

Letter 4

                                              Matlock Bank,
                                         Friday July 9 1886
My dear Alfred,

              I hope by this time you are quite rid of your
cold. I should think it is your old friend the Hay Fever for
the hay is all down here and if the hot weather should
continue a short time longer it will be all gathered in. I
think very much about you walking all day in the hot sun, I
think it must be very tiring for you , how do you stand it? It
is quite terrible here but we are always grumbling never right
but the good Lord knows what is best for us and all is right
if we could only see it.

           It was the Sermons at Wensley last Sunday, but one
I walked to Calker? to Miss Marsdens and got there just at
dinnertime, she never cooks on a Sunday, and went with her to
Chapel in the afternoon. It seemed like old times, I did enjoy
it very much. I got tea with Foleys, poor old Mrs Foley hath
been dead some months now, she had a cancer in her breast and
was a very great sufferer. Andrew Marsden that used to bring
Goosberry from Gaber? is dead, he was her brother. I went to
chapel again at night and came out too soon to catch the
train. I found Walter just comming to meet, me we went quick
but had the pleasure of seeing the train just leaving the
station as we got to the Bridge, so we went over the meadows
by the foot road and very glad I was that Walter came to meet

         Mrs Shaw is thinking of leaving Matlock, she thinks
it does not agree with Willie. She says when he is away from
here he is much better, but when he comes back home he is
worse again. He hath been to the Isle of Man, Southport,
Blackpool. I fear he will not be much better, I hope he will
for his mother's sake. Walter seems to wish to learn to swim .
I asked sometime since if he could swim and he said "yes, to
the bottom", but I think he means to learn, it will be good
for him. He seems to get much better on the violin, he is a
good sturdy lad, thank God for you both my dear lads.

        Charlie Champole? is dead, he was ruptured in his
bowels some years. He went to Derby for a truss, when he came
back he could hardly get up Dab Lane. They had to call up ---
in the night, he told him there was no hope except he would
undergo an operation. He said he would, they gave him
cloreform ,(I can not spell it right), and cut and took his
bowels out, and put them right and sewed them up again, but he
died with the chloriform (sic). I am to go to a tea Party at
the Chapel on Monday. Miss Fox has been to Southport a short
time, so we made a --- --- among our class to make her a
present of something we have bought a black marble Time piece
a very nice one and we must present it to her on Monday at the

       We have had a storm of rain last night it came down by
buckets full and it will do much good. Jackson is still here
he lives with his mother and goes to see his children
sometimes and walks about with a good gold ring on his finger
and gold studs --- the fool I can't abide him.

     I think I have tired you this time. We are all well at
home I am very tired this hot weather but I am only waiting
till the master calls and have to be found ready. Eliza, Lucy,
Alberto all send there love and hope this will find you well
as they leave us,

            I remain always your
              faithful Friend

                Eliza Dorothy Doxey

Lucy has begun to go to school and marches off quite large.

Letter 5

        [From Eliza Dorothy Howe (about 79) to her grandson 
        Alfred Doxey (about 20) probably about 1885]

                                   Matlock Bank March 15th

My dear Alfred,

             You will think me long in writing to you and I
intended writing to you at least once a week but I seem to
have no time or spirit when my work is done to begin to write
a letter and I forget what I meant to say . I am glad to say
that we are all well in health and in such good spirits thank
the Lord for all his goodness. I have thought much about you
when the weather has been so changeable, it has been very bad
this winter here and I tremble for you but thank God you have
stood it well and bravely

             I had a great deal of news to tell you but I have
forgotten it all, I will try to remember some. Mrs Wheatcroft
is no better she has 2 persons to sit with her night and day
she can now go about the house but she has to be watched. Aunt
Mary has been with her until the last 2 weeks she left to go
to the Establishment, she seems to like it very well, she has
2 rooms at Handfords and seems very comfortable. Fred Radford
is there, he is Kitchen Steward. He has been a week and I
think he will stay. Annie is in the Reception room and they
like her very much. The Salvation Army have taken the Skating
Rink at Matlock Bath to hold meetings in. The first was last
night and they was to preach twice today. God bless their
meetings. Mrs Spencer that lived near the Quakers Chapel was
buried last week after a short illness, She was one of the
Mothers Meeting class of Miss Steven, we all had to follow her
to her grave which made it a very large Funeral indeed. Her
daughter was asked at church to be married the third time

            Henry Wards wife's mother is dead and buried at
Critch Church. Old Mr Hawley the Grandfather of them at the
Poor Office is dead and buried. Old Mr Buxton of Wirksworth
preacher (I am very sorry we have so few left like him) is
dead and buried. You know that young girl at the Bridge, her
name is Thompson, went out of her mind some time since, she is
rather better and Coopers that keep a Pot Shop at Matlock
Green have adopted her as their daughter as they have no
children of their own. I am glad, I think they will be good to
her, Bless the Good Lord he has opened a path for her that no
one would have thought of. They are going to begin of the road
past our house tomorrow, it does plague your poor Father it
will be so much expense but we shall have a lamp at the corner
of our shop and another at the corner so it will be a little
better on a dark night

         [letter ends abruptly, a sheet may be missing or EDH
may have forgotten to sign - Editor]

Letter 6

                                 Matlock Bank March 15 1886
My Dear Alfred,

              I do not know what kind of weather it is at
Sheffield it is fearfull here, the Hills have been covered
with snow ever since Christmas and the roads are all over ice
and dangerous to walk on. The snow melts in the sun in the
daytime and freezes again at night. All out door work is at a
stand and there are many men with families have been out of
work ten weeks, able and willing to work and cannot get a job
to do. Dr Hunter and Father have had a sack of flour and given
the worst off a stone of flour and a peck of Lentils and there
is a little cart going all day up and down Dab Lane with a few
Hundreds of coal. Poor things think in this weather, neither
food nor fire God help them, surely this can not last long.
They say in America that it will last until the middle of May
I hope they do not know. It has been a rough beginning for
Walter. They are repairing the water pipes at Matlock Bath and
they have been working out of door all this storm almost and
at the top of Cross Green Church sometime. I am sure they must
be almost frozen sometimes but I take care that he has dry
warm clothes to put on when he comes home.

             I suppose Father has told you Mr Wass is dead and
buried. Mother and I went to Darley to see the Funeral. He was
out shooting on the moors and got very wet and had a bad cold,
and he meant to go to Bournmouth or Cannes in France but he
got no further than London to his sisters Mrs Buzzard her
husband is a doctor (Miss Bell Wass that was) and could get no
further and died there. He came from London by the railway to
Darley. They put him into the hearse at the station and there
was almost all the great folks with their carriages and cabs
there and all Mr Wass's workmen all in procesion. I think
there must have been some hundreds of them for the Church was
full of men. We did not see them come from the station for we
did not know what time they would be at the station and we
were 2 hours too soon and we got in the church as soon as we
got the door opened and did not come out till they went to the
grave it was so cold. The Church was quite filled with the
men. William Buxton was one of the bearers and the people
about Lea. It was a most beautiful coffin and the top and
sides being covered with the most beautiful wreath of flowers.
I never saw such beautiful wreathes in my life. The grave was
onlu dug and lined with brick, everybody said for a rich
Gentleman they never saw so plain a funeral in their life.
There was no fuss but just the same service as for a poor man.
It began to snow as we stood in the churchyard and we almost
starved, so we set off to come home as soon as we could, the
snow beat in our faces like pinpoints. I began to be tired
when up came a cab and someone called Mrs Doxey. Will you ride
to the Bridge, come jump up. It was Jane? Radford and very
thankful it was to ride with the driver in front, but Mother
had to walk ( it was Mrs Myers and daughter in the cab) but
she could get on faster without me . Mr Wass was 56 years. I
do not know how things will be I think the --- will get on
badly with out him, and I do not know how he has left his
affairs, perhaps we shall hear in time.

         Mr Woodiwiss has bought that piece of land opposite
Henry Wards, below the Weslyan Chapel down to the Roman
Castle?, the Chapel to be built on, I think he will build some
cottage houses. He has asked your Father about making the
plans, I do not know if they have agreed about them . They
have formed Committee at the Bridge to make soup for the
destitute. I saw them comming up Dab Lane with cases and a
loaf of bread each and I feel thankful that they can get a
little help. They say they have cut up 3 quarters of a cow in
two days. Williams that used to be at Smedleys is making the
soup, and they say it is very good. I dare say you are quite
tired of this long dull letter. We are all well in health at
home. I am better than I have been for a long time I am
thankful to say, and hope this will find you quite well,

                      I remain your Grandmother,


Letter 7

                                              Matlock Bank,

                                                Nov 29 1886
My Dear Alfred,

              I now sit down to write a long letter to you and
tell all the news of Matlock if I can remember, for I forget
everything after a short time. I suppose Father sends you
plenty so I will send you all I can think of old and new. In
the first place how are you, how is your cold. I hope by this
time it is quite gone and that this will find you as well as
it leaves us, I am very thankful to say . Walter is sadly
faced with the toothache, I want him to have it drawn but he
does not seem willing to part with it poor lad. He very often
comes home at night wet through and all over mud, but I take
care to dry his things ready for morning, but he is a very
good lad and works hard God Bless him. The fish is doing very
well now I am so sorry that we lost the gold fish they were
such pretty things.

              We went to Mrs Walkers to Dinner a short time
since. Mr Walker gave an address but I could not hear a word
before we came away . We sat down at the table for a sitting,
it was a large dining table and as there was only Mr W, Mrs W,
Father, Mother, Mr and Mrs Lennox and me, we had a square
piece of wood on the top of the table to put our hand on.
Eliza was with us and stood watching us, and at last she asked
her mother what are you playing at.This set Mother laughing
and could not give over. Mr Lennox said aye you may well ask
that child, so we all got up, it was no go.

             We have a lady preaching at our chapel yesterday
in the morning. At night the chapel was full. She is staying a
fortnight and speaking every day. I like her much, I think she
will do good among us. She gives Bible readings in the
afternoon and preaches at night. She takes a Parable from the
Bible and forms it so as to make it pass before your eyes, and
then gives it in a spiritual sense and does it well, you seem
to see the Picture before your eyes. Her language is good yet
very simple . I like her much.

             I and William went to Stanton Wakes, it was up to
the shoe top in mud, but I got into a milk cart and I thought
William had paid him, so I thanked him on getting out and
walked away. I felt quite ashamed when he told me, and sent
Uncle with the money. I dare not ask him again.

             Poor Mrs Foley at Wensley is dead and buried, she
died of a cancer in her breast. Mr Montgomery is very ill, he
is given over by the Doctors. He had a cancer on the inside,
he cannot get better. I think he hath been in bed 8 or 9
weeks, I am very sorry he hath a large family.

             Mr Henry Wright (Wensley) is dead if you remember
he had a wooden leg and was a Tailor. Mrs Hammersley is dead
and Mr and Miss is gone away. Old Mrs Hopkinson, Miss Holmes
Grandmother is dead. William Hanby, Lea, is dead and Wm
Pearsons wife, Lea, has had a stroke and is dead, and many of
my old friends have been called away and I am yet spared
Praise the Lord for his sparing mercy and may I each day feel
that I am a days march nearer Home and ready at any time to go
when the master shall please to call me.

           I hope this frost will suit you better than the
cold wet time we have had solong. Christmas will soon be here
and then I hope you will be able to come over once more and be
with us it will not be Christmas without you. We all join in
love to you and I remain,

                 Your affectionate friend,
                   Old Grandmother Doxey.

I doubt you will be --- with this letter well never mind I do
not write often

Letter 8

      (From Eliza Dorothy Howe to Alfred Doxey)

                                                  (No date)
Dear Alfred,

           How do you go on this hot weather. I think about
you and hope you will take care of your health and hope you
are quite well. I wish you would always say how you are in
every letter for when you do not we think you are not well.

           I have had a very bad cold and cough but I am
thankful I am much better. Father has been in a poor way some
time I feel very anxious about him sometime he has begun to
have a bottle of beer every day and I think it hath done him
much good for he seems better and more cheerful thank God. He
and Mother were to go to the Isle of Man but Father cannot go
yet for Dr Hunter hath bought Mr Summer's House for 1200£ and
no one can -- after things for him but Father and it will take
up his time at nights for some time. Poor Matter I am sorry
for him .

           Ben is after drunk and he has not much work and he
has not had any wages this last 3 months and the lad ---- but
Father has asked a Plumber at Matlock Bath for a place for him
he says. Ben will --- in a while he is sure. All this is
marked Private.

            I think I told you Mrs Crowder is dead poor thing
they are all quarreling about her clothes forgetting there is
a baby that ought to be thought about. There was quite a
little --- at her death there came a basket of the most
beautiful hot house flowers to be put in her coffin a boy
brought them and when asked who had sent them he said there
was no name they would not allow them to be put in but her
sisters made them into a wreath and Aunt Mary Doxey carried
them after the Funeral (poor thing) somebody thought well on

            The son to Dickum that married Miss Slack who died
some time since of consumption was buried this last week he
caught her disorder and has not been long after her.

            I dare say you know Fred Bradford is at the
Establishment as Kitchen Steward. Aunt Mary is going this week
to take what used to be Miss Parker's place in the still room

            They have given Mrs Darley and her daughter notice
to leave and she is going this week and Aunt Mary is taking
her place. It is Annie's birthday today and a gentleman has
made her a present of a beautiful silver brooch and a very
nice letter. Father has bought her a flowering album a very
nice one. Mother has bought a pair of rabbits he is becking?
them in the little place up the ladder I do not know how he
will get on with them. James Doxey's wife is at the hospital,
she has the rheumatism in her feet and hands she is rather
better, Mrs Smedley says she can can cure her, I wish she may
for the sake of her 5 children. I dare not read this scribble
for if I do I may not write another. I hope you will come over
on Bank Holiday.

          I remain your ever loving Grandmother

                                       E.D. Doxey.

Letter 9

       Just as they got to the bottom of Dab Lane, as it was a
fine day they set off to walk. They found Aunt much better and
then thought to come back by the ½ past 5 train. When they got
to the station that train had been taken off and they had to
wait at the station 2 hours for the last train. I was quite
sorry for Mother did not go out often. Aunt and Alberto went
to Holloway on Sunday they should have returned on Monday but
did not Mrs Wheldon at the Establishment near Mrs Martins sent
for her to be a especial nurse to a lady but another stepped
in and she would be too late. Annie has just been in and she
says she is going to fetch her Mother from Holloway. Smedleys
want to see her. I hope she will get a place there.

          I have just heard Mrs Chaplin died on Saturday of an
Appoplectic(sic) fit and is to be interred on Thursday

          I am glad you have a companion you know it will be
much pleasanter for both. Mrs Shaw is quite pleased about it.
You do not say anything about your health. I hope you keep
quite well and do not find your work so hard and tiresome as
you get used to it.
        I am very thankful to say that we are all well and
hope you are we shall be very glad to see you when you can
come pray do not forget us. Father and Mother send their best
love to you and I must not forget Eliza Lucy and poor Berto
she looks up so pleased when she hears her name in your
letters. Respects to Mathew Shaw and love to you.

                       I remain your affectionate Grandmother,


             Me Burden is leaving Matlock he is going to be
manager of a gentleman's Club House somewhere in Wales I
forget where. There will be a sale this week. We have quite a
grand shop next door. --- --- and fancy goods and it looks a
very good shop to look at they 4 children yet we scarce ever
see them and we never go in their house and they never come
into ours they are very good neighbours.

          Please burn this when read and pray do not let any
one see this scrawl I am quite ashamed of it but I cannot help
it I forget everything I want to say.

Letter 10

I dare say father hath sent you all about it and you will have
seen the paper . We waited until they brought the coffin out
of the Church and got a sight of the grave. It was lined all
round with red cloth and Ivy --- and then we ------------of
our Party that was last and then walked home. I wanted Eva? to
walk on and leave me that she might get home sooner but she
said she would not leave me one inch so we got home at last
and I thanked God that I had a home to go to wet and tired as
I was. I expect you are tired of reading all this scrawl but I
thought it would amuse you . Mrs Malvich? of Matlock town was
buried yesterday they rung a muffled Peal. I forgot to tell
you that all the singers at Darley Church in white gowns sang
at the grave over Mr Whitworth. Mr Askew Bookkeeper has ---
away and left his wife and family --- and been collecting
Christmas --- and taken all the money they can not find him at

      George Ashton has been sold up for his Fathers debts
which he took to poor fellow I am sorry for him. I dare not
read what I have written so I send it with all its
imperfections and its --- but with love.

                       I remain your friend,


Letter 11

    (written "shortly before her death on 25 Jan 1888")

       All the world almost are talking of Battles, and Armies
and Soldiers, and I think I must tell you about an Army on
paper. There are 2 armies set in battle array, the one side
are fine straight clean good looking soldiers, upright and
true and they have a banner inscribed with the motto "The good
old English language".
        The other side are a mixed lot from all parts. Poor
feeble, lame and vulgar, some without an arm, some without a
leg and I think some without a head and their Banner has the
motto "Slang"
        Hoorah for the good old English that tyrants cannot
gagge and I hope it will drive the alien army clean out of the

       I am glad you are having some new clothes you will find
out what a hard task it is sometimes to make all ends meet. I
think you have done well if you want some new shirts or any
thing else bring them when you come that I can do for you.

       The children send their love and kisses without end.
Mother says she need not go to the top of Masson to see if
your clothes fit she will soon see when you come and now my
dear Alfred I pray daily that you may have understanding to
know your duty and the grace of the the Holy Spirit to enable
you to perform it,

                Your sincere friend


Letter 12

 [From Eliza Dorothy Howe aged 79 to Alfred Doxey aged 20]

                                      Matlock Bank Oct 25 1885

Dear Alfred,

               I take up my pen to write to you but I hope you
will not send it back to Matlock for my scrawl is not fit for
everyone to see I cannot write as I once could but I will try
my best. How do you like this weather, I keep thinking about
you when I hear the rain beating on the window and wonder if
you can stand it or if you will be laid up with a cold, I
think you stand it well. We have had a flood but it is gone
down and we have a beautiful day to say Thank God for it. We
are all well at home and hope this will find you better. I
have had a letter from your Aunt Hannah at Manchester, she is
very ill, she is short of breath. She went to Market last
Saturday and could not get back; they sent for a doctor at
last, he said she would not be long here. I have had another
letter this morning saying she had begun to swell and they say
she may not see another Sunday morning. I have sent a little
money, indeed all I have. I wish I could send her more, it
will be my turn next, I am the last of our family. Oh may I be
ready when the summons shall come. Mr Jones the Shoemaker died
yesterday. Mr Hill is very bad with the rhuematism, he cannot
walk many steps from his chair . I think he will never be much
better, we shall miss him very much at chapel, he hath been a
faithful servant and I hope he will have the joy of hearing
the blessed word well done good and faithful servant.

            It was our sewing meeting last night it was Mrs
Hodgekins our Tea there was above 40 there it was a very
pleasant meeting. Walter has began to go to Matlock Bath to
work, he began yesterday it is not very favourable weather for
him to begin with I hope he will like his place.

            It is Stanton Walks on Sunday. I do not know how
we shall get up Retor, you may think how it will be with all
the rain.

           There is going to be a grand Supper up at Smedley
for all the workmen on the Job, they are to have it in the New
Dining room. Father has the chief spoke in the wheel. I am
sure he has plenty to do ---. I must now end my long dry
letter with love to you , I remain your loving friend,

                          Eliza Dorothy Doxey

Compiled, indexed, formatted and copyright © 2001, 5-day forcast. All Rights Reserved.