Letter # 45 - This undated letter was probably written in the autumn of 1881 by Janís younger sister Marchien, wife of Detmer Dekker, whose letter is not included.


Dear Brother, Sister and children,

Just a little letter from me to assure you of my health, inasmuch as Detmer has written about things in general. Iíll just put in a little note hoping that you may receive these letters in good health.

Our children are growing so quickly. Our dear little Berend Geuchien is getting stronger. Our Elziena is working in Haarlemmermeer at the son of Dominee Deddens. He is the Principal at Haarlemmermeer. But she is not there as a servant, because the Master and his Wife like her so much and she likes them just as much. Even so she receives a good wage, 65 guilders a year.

I wrote (her) that Uncle Jan and Aunt wrote us that if we wanted information about America, Uncle would provide it. She wrote us that she was in good health and then she began: it would really sadden me if we went to America because I have it so good here you canít imagine it.

You certainly read in the newspaper that a boat carrying leather goods perished at sea. I do hope, though, that a ship soon comes up for sale.

The Principalís nephew is a son of Detmerís sister and he married a wealthy woman. We let her know that she (Elziena) can really knit well and what she observes she learns right away.

Yes, dear ones, I write all this because I donít have much to write about. If we were near each other then there would be things to talk about now and then. I and our children are not inclined toward (moving to) America. Nowadays land is very cheap here. You could certainly become a farmer here. Dear Brother and Sister, you surely have no desire to do this. We would so much like to see you and your children, but though we may consider the ways, the Lord decides on our path.

Three weeks ago on Friday a boat with emigrants set out from Amsterdam and on Saturday evening it foundered and many lost their lives including the captain. So we can see once again how brief is life. Often so many plans are made and we ourselves have experienced this, especially this year which will soon be ended.

Now dear ones may the Lord protect and spare us from disasters and bless us in both body and soul. That is the wish of your loving Brother and Sister.