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A letter from Arthur to his brother Maurice Witts

 




                                                       Oneel  7.6.0
                                                        Wee Waa
                                                         15 March 1907

  My dear old Maurice
                         Yours 0f the 30th June just arrived
  not a very hurried Jaunt Think you, but
  never the less very welcome to me. Am always
  so pleased to hear of your doings, and no doubt
  you have luck. To have your house
  smashed is hard lines, but to lose your
  box, port and bed your only comfort is
  what I call rotten luck, but you seem
  cheerful with it all and just as well too
  whining would do no good and as Jimmy
  Soaber would always say try the b----d again.
   Your trip to Mab’s or rather the return was
  not all that could be desired- when
  a chap is to sleep on bamboo poles
  his luck smells a bit. I reckon what
  a fine specimen of lout you must have
  looked. Shirt with one sleeve, trousers with
  one pocket, shoes tied together and very
  much draggled- What would Mab have
  though if she had seen you then.
   How is the dear little girl?
   You have a fine number trees in now
  if only they were leaving, when as they start
  to bear. If you could only get your produce
  away easily and freely what a difference it would
  make. we have little trouble getting ours away
  now. A platform a mile and a half from the doorstep and
  about the same from the woolshed, but the trouble
  is to get something to send away- Ewes will breed
  two lambs a year but only one fleece, and there is
  nothing else to send but the carcass. We have
  about 9,000 wethers to send down during the winter
  the are very fat and should be really prime by
  July - have had great seasons of late and this summer
  beats all. Have had 2 inches of rain this week
  just as the feed began to dry a bit and just in
  time for 22,000 Ewes that have commenced to drop,
  so they should give good account of themselves.
  Should have fifty or sixty thousand to shear
  next August and all should cut great fleece--
   I am looking out hard for a management still.
  It is rotten not to be able to get a home of some
  sort and settle down. Have had a chance or two but with
  people I would not go to-  Good old jack Mc. is ever
  on the alert and has a place in view now in Qland.
  He has written down below to find out particulars.
  It may be a rotten place who knows.
   I could have the Parson’s cottage here as it is empty
   but you know old lad that, that is not my style
  if I can possibly as better bring my dear old girl
  to a small cottage and share, 150 p a and keep.
  it may be all right for some but it is not what I wish
  to bring my wife to. I thought one time that
  I would have the management here but the place is
  very deeply involved and it  will not pay Mr. Q.
  to retire and pay a manager while he can still do it- If
  we had a few more of these bonser years, say
  three or four, then he may retire but you know
  that, if, is an ugly word to get rid of. Mr. Q
  advises me to stay try and get a place of my own, but one
  with such limited means has to start in such a
  small way that it is rather a steep ladder to climb
  for a man of my age. No doubt if I had bought a small
  place three years ago I would have coined money as all
  have done about here for the past few years. It is
  a wonderful country in good seasons but a b- in
  bad ones- Harry is doing well at Gunning and poor
  old Ned is doing very well at Surveying, has more work
  that he can do of course. You know he has leased
  Jumble and has rented the opp. 1,000 acres only, and had
  all that burned out a while back. Just managed to save the
  house, but they got heavy rain shortly after and any amount
  of feed soon came. Fred is a queer Curs and lives
  all his time about Jumble etc. droving and such like and
  never goes over to see his wife. I fancy I see
  myself away from my wife for months at a time.
  Not if I know it. Derby at last joined the
  benedicts and I suppose will soon have a tribe like
  the rest , Mrs. Fred has one--
   Great Amateur Races Walgets- 10th and 11th April,. A very big affair
  I believe this year, Girlie Molly Dale (Narralie) Cousins,
  are to go down. Nell Druits another cousin is or will be
  back in Walgets for them. Nell can’t get on with her step mother
  too well so spends most of her time away. Don’t know that I
  shall go to Walgets- I want to go up to Tenterfield in June
  and don’t want to be away to much, but goodness knows I
  go away little, rarely leave Oneel I had three weeks with
  my girl and her people at Tenerfield at Xmas- I think I told
  you in my last letter all about the holiday.
   Very few of the family at home now- One married, two in Tasmania
  and two at school in Sydney, only five youngest here, and rotten little
  cows they are- They appear to me to get worse every week, one
  of the little cows comes in front of visitors etc. and catches me by my
  diddles and says. Is that your knife. She has done it several
  times. Will send Ray’s last letter to you so you can see how
  things are over that way --- Good by old lad and very best
  of luck be yours always is my sincere wish of
   Your affectionate brother
                                         Arthur

 

 

Transcribed By Paul Jones From the Handwritten pen and ink-- I have tried to keep to the original format and terminology- The original script was written on both sides of a fine rice letter paper- and with the use of pen and ink, the script on the reverse side found its way through the paper over the years,  combined with the fact that the gentlman concerned wrote his (w,u,n,m) and (o,v) and (r,e) looking the same, it was difficult to interpret