This letter from Esther to her father comes from Boston, where Esther was living with her husband George, who worked as a lumber agent. She seems hesitant to visit Plymouth, as she has been struggling with her health and believes that it would be stressful for her to stay at home and care for Ephraim or her brother and his family. The letter follows two years after the death of her mother, but Esther is mourning deeply still.
Sunday June 11. 71
Dear Father, I received your letter together with James & Maud’s in due season. I wish I had some special news to write that would interest you, but have not as we live a quiet sort of life with very little incident in it. I hear occasionally through James Thurber, who I meet now & then, & through Schuyler & wife, who we see once in a while, from Plymouth and know that you are jogging along much as usual. What warm weather we have had for the season. We moved this week from a back room, or rather rooms, where we had a fine view of the back bay & also of Longwood, Brighton, the Mill-dam, Charles river, &c to front rooms where we have a fine view of the Avenue. I like them very much better, partly because they are a little larger & then we can see the riding. The avenue is wide & all the splendid teams are here afternoons & evenings & it is very gay. We don’t have to pay any more. It has been real [?] disagreeable today, raining & blowing & sultry.
George does not take his horse out Sundays often, for he has so much to do through the week that he wants him to rest. I met Nettie [?] Hatch [?] in the horse cars a few days ago & have seen her riding by with her husband since. I also met Emily yesterday on the street. She looked as nice as could be. George went to Chicago and was gone about two weeks. He is very busy & quite well. He goes down in the harbor the 17th of June with the Lumber dealers. They don’t take thier wives & I am very willing for I don’t want to go. I am not going to Chicago till fall. The old lady Gustorf [?] has been very sick indeed, with something the matter with her liver, & is now only well enough to sit up a little during the day, so I have put off my visit. I hope I shall go in the fall, especially as it is doubtful if Mrs G. lives many years. I can come to Plymouth for a visit I suppose almost any time but I don’t seem to care much about going, everything is so changed there. & as long as you are all well there does not seem to be any special need of my going.
One thing you must remember, I should not stay at your house or James’ for when I go it will not be to have any care if I can help it. I have not been very well for some time. My head has been very troublesome & the Dr says I must avoid all care & worry this summer that I can. It began with one of those awful head colds & no one knows what I have suffered with it but it is getting better now. If I staid with you I should worry about house cleaning, & if I was at James those two relations of mine would worry me, so I shall go to [name?]’s or somewhere else if I come, but I have not made any plans at all for the summer and don’t intend to in fact. I don’t think it is of much use to, for one hardly ever does as they plan. Business is about as usual. It has been quite steady so far this year but not very driving any time & that is the best way. I hope to come sometime & see you & the rest, but not just now, for I don’t feel very strong. I wish you would write me in a while.
I miss Mother so much all the time & I think it grows worse & worse. I don’t see a great deal of Hannah, for it is a very long walk over there & there is no way of going in the horse cars at all. Give my love to all. This has been a most oppressive day & makes one feel real low spirited. I had a call from Willie [?] Davis but was out, I was real sorry.
With lots of love, Esther.