Letter # 43 - This short letter from Janís mother bears no date, but was probably written in 1880. She was then about 66 years old, and had been a widow for 17 years. Janís father Geugien died in 1863, at age 49, when his mother was also 49 and Jan was 18 years old. Like all the other letters in the collection, it does not use periods or a capital letter to begin a new sentence.


Dear ones, That Iím not so agile anymore and experience ups and downs more often as one grows older, is clear. Do you have a school there close by? How does it go there - do they learn Dutch or is it entirely English? Are the older folks still near you? Now, dear ones, you will say Iím surely asking a lot of questions. I just canít wait until I get all the answers; I just better stop.

I donít know of any details right now to write about. Sometimes there is not much that is worthwhile. I must greet you for Grandfather and Grandmother and from our Marchien and Heigiena. I really wish they would write once, but I canít get them to do it.

Mrs. Sonnevelt who used to live across from us died and was buried at noon. I hope, dear ones, that you will overlook my mistakes and scribbles. Now, dear ones, may the Lord be our mutual guide and leader in all our ways. Having wished for you the indispensable blessing of the Lord, I am your loving Mother, M. J. Boer

Kiss your children for us. If you can, write us quickly, and dear Mettje, too.