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Klaas Schuiling, Manhattan (Montana)

Sjouke Johannes Hoogland, St. Annaparochie

Engelse vertaling
Naamloos document

Frisian emigrants 14.
Schuiling to Hoogland.

Manhattan, June 22 1902.

Dear br[other] and s[ister]!
It is Sunday afternoon. Klaas went to church and I thought I had a quiet moment, but Sijtsche bothers me so that I cannot pay attention to the writing.
She also is troubled by the warmth, I believe, her head is burning-hot.
So teasing all the time not knowing what she wants.
Otherwise I could bring her outside then Thijs could wheel her, but at the moment it is better inside than outside.
Outside it is so hot and there is not a nice little  wind at the moment.
Some weeks ago, on a Monday, we had an extremely hot day.
Then Ytje also was troubled by it, she was hard pressed.
She could not eat of course [and had] a lot of drinks, most of the time she eat her beat up egg.
Here they call it Summer illness [meant could be heat-stroke], mostly children suffer from it.
In the eastern part of America a lot die of that illness, it seems it is not that hot here.
Especially at night it must be hot there and here mostly cold.
Last week it was freezing properly for 2 nights, so my beans in the garden are totally frozen and I had just such a nice part.
I had just weed the entire garden and now I’ve to replant beans again.
I have a lot in it: onions, radish, salad, cabbage, carrots, gray and green peas, but the green peas didn’t come up.
I don’t know what was going wrong, it were seeds we grew ourselves last year.
A garden gives a lot of work when one wishes to keep it clean and when one doesn’t have it, it cost a lot of money because it is expensive here to buy everything [vegetables].

Now I’ll write some again, I was about 4 hours away from it.
First I had to make food and drinks, then the children to bed and later on milking the cows, it all cost a lot of time.
Now something else. Yes Klaaske, you will laugh about it: I am still in the middle of the spring-cleaning and I am half way, I stopped it for one week because I had to do the garden at first last week and I had to wash!
But now I will try to clean the rest this week, I’ll manage it.
So Kl[aaske] you can understand that sewing and darning will be almost nothing.
To have it done the wages are too high, than you better can buy it ready-made.
If it was nearer, one of Jaantje’s girls could stay with us and make new dresses for the girls because I already have the materials.
Well Klaaske you will have your birthday next month, isn’t it?
So I hearty congratulate you and hope that you may live long together with your whole family and that you may have a nice day.
Well Kl[aaske] you wrote about such a party, I cannot say that people here are doing it on a larger scale than in Holland.
They don’t sew for a young woman.
But young people among each other, everyone takes some with them, it can be a tart or something else.
The other day we paid about 3 visits with the children, which is a feast.
Everyone likes our 2 little girls and it also looks nice, they cannot walk yet, they can stand so they are not forward with that too.
Sleep well, your sister Geertje and children.

Manhattan, Montana.
Dear br[other] and s[ister],

I will write you again, it is about time.
We are very busy these days so there is almost no time for it.
At the moment it is 9 p.m. and we get up at 4 a.m. so don’t think it will be a long letter.
First I will answer your questions.
Gallatin, Co on the address means Gallatin county, county means environment or neighborhood or region.*
The reverend speaks or spoke his preaches in Dutch, but at the moment we don’t have one, the parish is vacant.
To talk English is not going very well, in the shop I can manage but to have a conversation is hard.
We don’t talk English, except when we go to town and read it even less.
There are schools in the neighborhood but the education stands on a low stairs in comparison with the Netherlands.
One can easier get the mouth filled here than the head.
Farm-hands earn here 35 dollars and board a month these days when they have a regular job, which is a bit to [high].

[upside down on top of the paper is written] How is Sijtsche of K.Bierema doing?

And when you need a man for some time, you have to pay 2 dollars a day and board.
Some people say a dollar here is as much as a guilder, but that is nonsense.
For 50 cents one can buy a pair of new blue trousers [overalls] or a blouse, one can do here with a dollar for clothes or shoes as much as with a ‘rijksdaalder’ in Holland.
Tobacco, cigars, spirits etc. are much more expensive here.
But daily use of necessities of life are cheap, so a farm-hand can save some if he likes.
The crops look nice here till now, but also the weeds are growing well and we don’t have time or energy to weed, at the moment we are very busy with irrigation.
Now I have to ask you some things: how about my account now, did you pay uncle?
I sent uncle a letter that had to arrive between the term of payment and his birthday, but uncle didn’t write back.
How are your crops doing and how ended things with the old potatoes, the horses are very expensive here.
Now another question for Klaaske, do have Ytje and Baukje already boy-friends?
Be all greeted from your brother Klaas.

Geertje is working in the garden every day, our beans have been frozen to death this week.
As soon as I have time we will write to Jaantje and father.

*A county is a geographical and political unit, that is, state government, county government and local government which may be city, village or township.