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Geertje de Jong, Manhattan (Montana)

Sjouke Johannes Hoogland, St. Annaparochie

Engelse vertaling
Naamloos document

Frisian emigrants 26.
Schuiling family to Hoogland family.

Manhattan Jan[uary] 9, 1910.
Dear br[other] and s[ister]!

I wish you a happy New Year and hope this year may  give blessings to all of us.
The old year was a good one for us here, we don’t have anything to complain about it.
Especially [our] health that is very well till now which is a great privilege.
At the moment we have a kind of Winter which can make us ill because it is freezing all the time.
Both little one’s almost cannot go outside.
When they can go out for a quarter of an hour than they are crying because of their cold fingers and such children like to go to play outside.
The three bigger children are going to school again, in the mean time they were home for 5 weeks.
Education is a sad thing here, sometimes they don’t go to school for half a year, they almost would forget everything.
The Dutch way of reading and writing they have to learn from the parents.
Thijs is getting better in reading Dutch, to spell is a trick to keep the Dutch and English [language] apart.
If Sijtsche was not as playful as she is than  she could be as good as Th[ijs], because if she needs to learn a song by heart and she is able to do so, it goes smoothly and most of the time she even cannot read it well yet.
Ytje has a better talent for everything, she learns easily and she is ahead of Th[ijs] at school.
She is always diligent and then it goes like this.
She grows fast and looks like she is 1 or 2 years older than Sijtsche.
Well Klaaske, you wrote if the girls learn to sew and knit, such things they don’t learn at school here, sometimes a piece of fancy-work (for example) to fringe a handkerchief or something with paper, such things are not needed.
So to sew we also have to teach them ourselves, this is the way is goes here.
Things like a pattern we can buy here in the shop for 10 or 15 cents, whatever what kind of pattern it is and every month there is a new fashion-plate.
When I be still alive and healthy I can teach them to sew.
To knit they know the stitch of it.
Knitted clothes are not much worn here and then you better can buy it because they don’t have good yarn here.
Well Kl[aaske] yesterday Jan[uary] 8 we received the tear-off calendars from Jaantje and Trijn and they already hang at the wall.
We’ll send immediately things [calendars?], one for each of you, they are not very nice but we couldn’t get anything else than these.
Well br[other] and s[ister] I don’t have news everything here is like it was before, just this: this Winter a lot of Hollanders are coming here also one [person] from St. Anna [Parochie].
They will be surprised [about] such a Winter.
Receive a lot of greetings from all of us, your br[other] and s[ister] and children.

A little teddy bear for you Y. from the children, lay it on a flat hand and you’ll have fun, your aunt Geertje.

[Upside down on top of this page is written] There are also some old one’s (calendars) in it but we did it because of the sturdiness.
Please write when you get them. Last year you never wrote about that.

Dear br[other] and s[ister],
We would have written 2 weeks ago, but it looks like to write a letter is a hard thing because it was putt-off every time.
Last week no trains came from the east because the traffic was hindered by the snow at some places.
Yesterday the mail came through again so we won’t delay it any longer.
We have a severe Winter here this year with lots of snow, I don’t think we had such a lot of snow here before, so we have a nice sleigh path.
I also transported a lot of grain by sleigh.
On Jan[uary] 1st and 2nd we had such an enormous snow storm that most of the roads were almost  impassable.
On Jan[uary] 4th I had to go to a burial of a child of our neighbors, then we had to go over a road where was 3 feet snow at some places.
So the first horses could not keep up to go in front of the procession to break through a way and at last we had the sleigh with the body at the back.
However at the moment we have nice weather every day and also not very cold either.
Today G[eertje] and I went to church with both older girls.
On the way there it was the most beautiful winter weather one can wish but on the way home it became more cold and also now with sundown , then it is always cold of course.
We have to drive an hour so it is no wonder.
Hereby I send you a cheque/check of 160 guilders from which Pieter must get f. 73,50 seventy-three guilders and 50 cents for his horse; f. 7,50 for the Heerenveenster courant [a newspaper] and then the rest is for father.
I also would like John to ask the veterinarian again if Bicarbonas natricus is the same as Bicarbonas soda [both Latin names].
The last one I can get here but from the first they don’t know what it is.
And then something else.
I have a nice and good mare which had 2 colts but both times she couldn’t get rid of the placenta, at last we had to remove it.
She [the mare] was suffering of it and of course there is some kind of danger in it.
Do you know if it is possible to do something about that or should it be better to bring such a mare no longer to the stallion.
Would it be possible that it is caused by fright because both times I came with her at the moment the cold was born and she is very angry then.
Last year we got 2 nice colts, but this year we’ll just have one.
These days horses are very expensive here, just like everything else indeed, grain prices are high too.
Oats         1,25 dollars per 100 pounds
Barley      1,50 dollars per 100 pounds
Wheat      0,95 dollars per 60 pounds [which is a bushel]
I don’t have more news now, greetings to all from us, greetings also for you, your br[other] and s[ister], Klaas.