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John MacKintosh
Chapter XVI - Correspondence


"In a man's letters his soul lies naked; his letters are only the mirrors of his heart."—Johnson.

In private letters we see the writer as he really is, and not as he is often represented or misrepresented. In public life and in business there is more or less of a pose, a certain amount of self-consciousness makes a man consider how he appears in the sight of others, and he acts accordingly. He is like a man facing a camera, and do what he may, it is almost impossible to be easy and natural under such circumstances. But good letters are snap-shots. When a man writes a letter he encloses his portrait whether he intends it or not; for it is as easy to distinguish the hypocrite from the honest man in Ills letters, as it is to discover any change of position in his photograph, no matter how cunningly the change was effected. The double take is as clearly seen in the one as in the other.

Most men are more intimate in their private correspondence and reveal the secrets of their hearts more unreservedly, than even in the privacy of their own homes. How often a letter has shown a greater depth of feeling and a richer nature than we imagined our correspondent possessed.

Mr. Mackintosh's letters were delightful; they were pictures of his home life for his friends as vivid as a cinema, and they were lighted up with his pleasant humour and kindly wisdom: The number of letters that he wrote with his own hand to men and women in all classes of society was amazing. Soldiers at the front and soldiers' mothers at home, were encouraged and sustained by cheery messages. His tender sympathy for those who were bereaved was always promptly expressed. Nor was anything too trivial for him to write about if he felt that he could be helpful; a Sunday school teacher discouraged, a member of the choir at the church suffering from a supposed slight, or a young man commencing business and losing heart because of the difficulties confronting him.

Mr. Mackintosh did not attempt 'fine' writing, which is invariably bad writing. Thoroughly honest, he wrote down his thoughts and feelings without reserve; they came forth with an impetuous rush that was like the man, full of life and energy. For more speedy expression he invented a sort of short-long-hand; he wrote the initial letter and the terminal one of a word, and represented the other letters by a dash in between. A specimen of his handwriting is given in facsimile on another page. His abounding good nature permeated every line he wrote, and in his correspondence he continued the ministry that was nearest his heart, of easing the burdens of others and making their life a brighter and better thing.

These letters and extracts from letters, are a few from many of like character, and are printed Just as a busy man threw them off. Comparing these letters with the early letters given in the first chapter the reader will see that the spirit which animated him then continues to the end. The last letter of the series has a pathetic interest, for it was written the night before his death, and as will be seen, it was never finished. Nevertheless it forms a fitting conclusion, for in it he was endeavouring to help the fishermen of Porthieven, West Cornwall, to get a heating apparatus for their chapel. Strange to say, not ten per cent. of the small chapels in that district have any means of artificial learning. Evidently the original builders had enough Methodist fire to warm both body and soul.

Extract from a letter written to a lady. A gem deserving a setting of gold.

Greystones,

Dear

August 31st, 1917.

"My greatest ambition in life is to help others. I don't easily forget the days when luxuries were few and far between, when I promised God if He helped me I would help others. God did his part; I must do mine.
JOHN MACKINTOSH."

Letter urging the necessity of opening a local relief fund for the assistance of victims of the war.

"To the Editor of the 'Halifax Daily Guardian.' Sept., 1914.

"Sir,

"At a time like the present one does not want to unduly alarm one's friends and neighbours, but it does seem to me, that it would be well to be moving, with a view to deciding what steps should be taken to relieve any distress that may arise as the result of the war crisis in our town.

"If the war should suddenly collapse and no special help is required, we shall all be very thankful; but if the worst comes to the worst, we must stand together, and every man who has been more fortunate than his brother must be prepared to make sacrifices.

"I am sure there are very many in our good old town who will sacrifice, if needs be, both time and money to keep the wolf from' the door.

"I hope the Mayor will call us together at the first possible moment, so that an organisation can be completed ready to act immediately, should the necessity arise.

Yours truly,
JOHN MACKINTOSH."


A minister's friend.

"Halifax,
"Dear - Oct. 2nd, 1919-

"Your long letter to hand posted 26th September, received Oct. 2nd; but this is not bad for these days. Most of our mails at the office are about a week late.

From your description of a land without railways one can imagine that you will not miss the trains now a strike is on, but up North we all know well we are in the thick of it.

"It was quite refreshing to read your description of the place and people in the district where you now reside. I am sure that it will appeal strongly to you for a season at any rate. Of course there are advantages in dirt. The old saying, 'Where there's muck there's brass' is a nasty one, but it is to some extent true. Still, the picture you paint of ' your' people and the little fishing village, makes one almost long to be there.

"Those tramps to the 'other chapels will bother you I fear. Would it help you and the church if I went into partnership with you, and we bought a 'gee gee' and carriage of some kind? Would it be cheaper keeping a horse of one's own rather than constantly hiring? Think this over, and if any real help, let me know. If it would not save much it would not be worth while of course, but if a big help, I am 'game,' and promise not to expect dividends, of the usual kind at any rate.

Yours sincerely,
JOHN MACKINTOSH."

Kind feelings should have full expression. Greystones,'

July 5th, 1919.

"Dear

"Your more than kind letter to hand. The worst of such kind expressions as you use to me, is, that it makes one a bit nervous, lest perchance one does not live up to them. But, dash it all, why should not folks say what they feel? Conventions wrap us up, so that we go through life leaving all the best things and the truest things unsaid. Folks are ready enough to say nasty things when they are due, eh? Well, this looks like fishing for more compliments, but really I am not.

I am,
Your friend,
JOHN MACKINTOSH."

Humourous expression of his views in regard to women preaching.

"Dear Halifax.
"I have arranged with the Rev. H. Smith for a deaconess and she will try and come in time for our church meeting on the 17th instant. We will get her into the work of visiting and attending the various meetings. I hope she does not want to preach for I don't like women preachers, although I would pretend I did, if it suited the people and the deaconess. However, I have told Mr. Smith we are not getting her for the pulpit, but for the work women can do far better than men, such as visiting the 'Women's Own,' Sunday School, &c.

JOHN MACKINTOSH."

Winter and enforced absence from " Queen's Road."

"Dear -
I kept to the house last week after Monday, and was in bed three days. Sunday we had a share in the big snow-storm, and when I looked through the window, the snow was quite a foot- deep or more around 'Greystones.' The view from our windows was fine; the hills all round being white, they showed up splendidly. I could not get the taxi people to come across the moor, and I had to give up my intention of going to 'Queen's Road,' so that Sunday was spoiled very much. I never think the week seems the same, if one is robbed of church on Sunday.

"I got back to business on Monday—yesterday; and besides this, I had an appointment with the Advisory Committee. Several of our men have to join up on May 15th. The few we then shall have will come up for review again on a later date, so we breathe again for a few months.

JOHN MACKINTOSH."

Appeal for help for prisoners of war.

To the Editor of the 'Halifax Courier.'

Halifax, 21st September, 1917.

"Sir,
"I have read your appeals for comforts for our Halifax soldier boys, and, though I have tried to do my bit fairly regularly, I feel there is great need for a special effort just now.

"Having a son a prisoner of war, I am naturally drawn to prisoner of war funds; but wherever our sons are they need looking after and ought to be remembered from time to time. The sentiment of Christmas-time is such, that an ordinary parcel becomes a gift from the 'Fairy Godmother.' The boys will find the sentiment all right if we provide the parcel.

"One hundred and eighty men have gone from my firm. I enclose a cheque for £60. This will cover the cost of a Christmas parcel to each of them, and leave a balance over for a few who have no one to watch over their interests. I have received the following message on a postcard to-day, from one of the 'Duke of Wellington's.' He is speaking on behalf. of a number of the Duke's soldiers who were in my son's platoon :-

'Kriegsgefangenen Stammlager, Limburg,
Mr. Mackintosh. Germany. Dear Sir,

Just a few lines to you, which I hope you will answer. I and my comrades have been wondering, ever since we were taken prisoners, how your son is getting on. Ever since that morning of May 3rd, when we saw him lying helpless, we have wondered if he got back all right, or if he was taken prisoner. I trust not the latter, as he was such a good sort to us boys. If he had the good luck to get back and is at home, just tell him that we were taken prisoners on that morning, and that we are in a bad way now, and hope that he will not forget us, but help us, as he has always done, now that we are all in want and practically starving.
I remain,
One of your Son's Platoon.'

It is to help such cases as these that the 'Courier' and other funds were established. As long as the war continues the help will be required. In spite of all the difficulties at home, don't let us forget those lads, who become almost childish in their joy on receiving a parcel from home. Just fancy those lads who opened their parcels 'slowly,' as reported in the 'Halifax Courier,' on the 15th instant.

"I believe the three things that keep the heart in the soldiers abroad are—first, the hope of peace; second, letters from home; third, parcels. I trust that help will roll in for your Christmas and other funds.

"I enclose £100 for your 'General Fund,' half of which I should like devoting for parcels to prisoners of war.

Sincerely yours,
JOHN MACKINTOSH."

Sympathetic letter to a former representative of the firm in Germany.

Greystones,'
"Dear 19th Nov., 1917.

"I was glad to hear that you managed to get a visit from your wife after two years' absence. How little we thought what was before us, when I used to stay at your house at Crefeld. I suppose the old familiar town is quite a camp for English prisoners at the present time.

"It will be easy for us who are comfortable at home, to give advice to you about having patience and all the rest of it, but I think our time will be better spent in doing all we can to press those who have the matter in hand, to complete arrangements for your liberation as quickly as possible.

"You kindly refer to my health. I am sorry to say that I am in these days almost an invalid, but 1 manage to put in some hours at business every day, and do a considerable amount of work about town, one way or another. If I followed my feelings I should many a day do nothing, but I am thankful to say, that my will power can force even a weak body to do a. considerable amount of work in a day's time. I am always expecting to be better. You will remember that day I was with you in a solicitor's office,—I forget the town where we were, but suddenly I had a heart attack.

"That seems to have been the beginning of my trouble. Every now and again I have a heart attack of that kind with varying severity, some very much milder than the one I refer to, the others quite as bad. I have always to carry tablets in my pocket to take when the attacks bother me. My doctor says that I am getting better of them, and that as my heart is not diseased in any way, I ought in time to get over them. In the meantime they set a limitation on what I can do, and I have always to study before engaging to undertake any work, whether it would induce a heart attack. Speaking of the heart in this way will make you think I am at death's door. Nothing of the kind I I a.m able to do a considerable amount of work, so long as I take extreme care in the doing of it.

JOHN MACKINTOSH."

A long and charming letter from a busy man a model for correspondents.

Greystones,'
"My dear Friends, Halifax.

"Telepathy must have been at work, for just at the moment you thought, ' I must write to Mr. Mackintosh,' I was saying to myself, 'I must write to Mr. Crutchley,' hence our letters crossed in the post.

"Well, I fear I must inflict my long hand on you once again. I am here at 'Greystones,' Saturday evening, and my typewriter is locked up at Albion Mills.

"I know quite well that people who will write long-hand, even with a fountain pen, in such a scrawl as this ought to be put under lock and key; for they are a danger to the society's health and temper. But I have just read your letter of the 10th inst., and your letters act on me like a red rag on a bull, and I feel I must 'butt in,' and toss something or other, and help to stir up someone, I hope for their good.

"First, let me say how delighted we are my wife sits in her rocking-chair whilst I write. She has read the letter) to hear of your improved health. I will send two tins of toffee 'on Monday, one for yourself and one for Doctor Moody, which please pass to him, with my grateful thanks for all his goodness to you.

"I must plead guilty of neglect in not writing you of late. I did not know, however, that it was my 'turn.' If I do miss for too, long, remind me, and I must do the same by you.

"I know what you do in the way of cheering folks up with your letters. Listen to this :-

'Mr. Crutchley writes me from time to time, and real tip-top letters they are too, and he tells me not to reply; and I know he writes to a lot of other fellows away on service as well as me.' Extract from Harold's letter just to hand.

"Did you know I was a Justice of the Peace? You will have to be more careful than ever now, won't you? I have been at the Court most days this week, just an hour or so, mid-day. I am done now for a month ; the magistrates share the work.

It is interesting work; I am all for letting 'em off. The magistrates tell me I shall get an eye-opener in time, as it is often mistaken kindness. We have wife-beaters (I like to give them 'gyp '), boy burglars, very few drunks; light restriction orders, short weight, profiteers, &c., &c.

"Douglas has got his artificial foot, or leg I should say, for it is really that. He can get about fine with the help of a stick, and as his leg gets stronger it is expected that he will -go even better. You cannot tell which leg it is scarcely. He has applied for his discharge, but of course they take time to consider these matters. We want to get him back to the office now that he is able to go without crutches.

"My health,—I am better a lot than I was a year ago. I occasionally have trouble with my heart and always have difficulty in walking far. But when I take care I usually do very well, and get through the day's work with enjoyment. Thanks for your kind enquiries.

"The Hun,—yes I feel like you, and to-day especially. One of Douglas's school-chums, one who was with him in the trenches in the early days of the war, went to a watery grave in the Dublin Holyhead boat, put down by the 'U Boats.' His invalid mother lives near us, and when our boys were out in France, she often used to have her bath-chair stopped at our gate, whilst Mother went out to have a talk about the prospects of the lads getting home safely.

"Well he came back badly gassed, recovered partly, and was training men at camp, and had been over to Ireland with a draught of men, and returning was drowned. He was killed as much by the 'Sinn Feiners' in Ireland as by the Germans, for the draught of soldiers was going to Ireland because Martial Law had been proclaimed there. Harold writes this week, saying that 'Two hundred and fifty soldiers have arrived in the little village where we have our base, in consequence of Martial Law being enforced in this district.'

"But let us pass on to pleasanter things. We have got them ' on the run' at last, and we shall see what we shall see within a week or two. Do you know I have been fixing the end of October for peace, for three months past. We are to have the beginning of it at any rate. When that day comes! Well, as a mutual friend of ours says, 'It will be an 'appy day.'

"We unveil a portrait of our old friend J. Hancock, in the school, on Sunday afternoon. I receive it on behalf of the Sunday School and the trustees. Shall be glad to see it on the walls he was a faithful 'Queen's Road' worker. His children have given it.

"Doctor Burns from the Halifax Parish Church is taking the chair and giving an address at Hanover shortly. I think it is a Missionary Meeting. A step in the right direction.

"I was medically examined and turned down 'Grade IV' July last. Mr. Henderson was a grade above me, but still outside the pale, so he cannot crow over me. Do you know the latest? One boy meeting another says, 'My grandfather has got his 'crawling up papers.'

"Speaking again of the Dublin boat, it is the route my son goes by when leave comes round. Harold tells me that the first time he went over, they saw a 'U Boat,' but managed to dodge it. So you can tell that I have felt this to come home rather closely to us.

My wife is well. Eric is well, and getting bigger every day.

Yours sincerely,
JOHN MACKINTOSH."

Illuminated address, and Christmas music. Greystones,'

"Dear 2nd Dec., 1919.

'You have stolen a march upon me this time. I have lost my turn; I have been going to write you ever since I opened your last letter, but somehow every minute has been employed, except for a few now and again that I had when I could not drag my body to the desk. I have been more than usually busy. For instance I had only one evening free last week, and that wasn't free. Is that Irish? I had to prepare a speech for 'Square' Sale of Work the next day. I had also to get some figures together for a meeting at our school, &c.

"They sprang a surprise upon me at 'Queen's Road' the other evening. I went to a 'Church meeting, with refreshments. A discussion took place about finances, chant books, &c., but later I found I had been 'led a lamb to the slaughter,' for an Illuminated Address, bound in morocco was presented to me. This was a memento of the big effort I managed to pull off a few months ago. I think you have had all particulars before.

I have now two Illuminated Addresses in this form, one from my workpeople and one from my associates in the church. What more could a man want? I was deeply thankful and only hope I may be worthy of all these expressions of good-will.

"Christmas is coming. You ought to be at 'Greystones' on the 25th. No less than six bands usually come. Since I have been president of King Cross Band my repute as a lover of brass bands has gone apace. Even the Salvation Army comes,—not very tuneful at the best, but when half frozen they are much worse. The worse they play the bigger the subscription.

Yours sincerely,
JOHN MACKINTOSH."

Letter to " Halifax Courier."
To the Editor of the 'Halifax Courier.' "Halifax,
Dear Sir, 3rd December, 1919.

'Heathen writes in last Saturday's Courier' upon a topic important to all interested in the religious and social work of the town. I would like to say one or two things that came to my mind as I read 'Heathen's' letter.

"First; why will so many people think that a crowd is morally wrong because it 'walks' if it sat or stayed at home and went to sleep it would be a very good crowd they think, but to actually walk about and occasionally jump, shocks them very much.

"In thinking about these young people, many persons blame the Church and Sunday school for not tackling the problem of entertaining them or instructing them on Sunday evenings.

If, as I surmise, 'Heathen ' has experience of Sunday school work, he will know that what I a.m going to say is quite true. You cannot expect the workers in the churches and Sunday schools of this town to undertake any more work on Sundays. I know something about the activities of hundreds of these workers in Halifax, and the same thing applies to most other towns. I will sketch the programme of a Sunday school worker :-

"Breakfast, Sunday morning,-8-30.

"Off to Sunday school for 'Opening Service,' 9 o'clock to 9-15. No trams running on Sunday mornings.

Meet scholars still arriving in large numbers in some Sunday schools.

"After the opening ceremony, retire to Class Rooms for lessons, lasting from half an hour to forty minutes ; return to Assembly Hall for concluding devotions. -

"At 10-20 a.m. assemble in church near by, teachers and workers sitting with the scholars.

"After the ' Children's Address ' and 'Scholars' Hymn,' the children are usually allowed to retire, about 11 a.m.

"Teachers and workers remain to the church service ; return home to dinner 12 to 12-30 at 1-45 again off to school. The boys and girls are present now in large numbers ; all in the best of spirits of course, which means noise, unless it is directed by the teacher into other interesting channels. School dismissed at from 3 to 3-30 p.m. ; home to tea or a short walk; back to church at 6 or 6-30 p.m. At many churches there are still after-meetings of one kind or another at 7-30 P.M.

"Remember that the churches are run in the main by Sunday school workers. Does 'Heathen,' or any other reasonable man, mean to say that these people are called upon to add to their labours, and to extend the work of the Sabbath day even beyond the hours mentioned above? I have no doubt, occasionally, help would be given by Sunday school workers, but you cannot expect to put burdens on to the willing horse until you break his back.

I quite agree with 'Heathen' that some further attempt should be made to offer the crowds of young folks an opportunity to meet together on Sunday evenings, in some form of service, or even just socially. But the persons to do this work are those hundreds of people (many of whom used to be Sunday school workers) who have been resting for years.

In addition to this, there are scores of men and women in Halifax who have all the brains required, who have business ability, and who will sacrifice a great deal, if only you can touch the responsive chord in their souls. Many of these persons do nothing but ' rest,' or 'entertain ' on the Sabbath day. Why should not they attend to the work that 'Heathen' has suggested? I believe they would if the matter were properly organised, and the suggestions were put before them in the right way.

"We must not forget that the Y.M.C.A. is doing something df this kind of work in the permanent building at Clare Hall. A fine service is conducted expressly for the young people referred to, the room being crowded every Sunday evening. If other rooms could be utilised in a similar way, or if the Y.M.C.A. itself could develop further on the same lines by taking the Picture Houses or similar places, then a need would be met.

Yours truly,
JOHN MACKINTOSH."

A pathetic letter written in consequence of failing health.

'Greystones,'
"Dear -

I am dictating a letter of a type that has not often been received from me during my lifetime. When I have consented to undertake a duty I have usually gone on with it ; but in. this case after very careful consideration, I feel quite justified in doing an unusual thing. I refer, of course, to the presidency of the Sunday School Union.

"I have no doubt you will remember, that, in my first letters answering your request, I told you that my health did not warrant me taking on this office; but I allowed myself to be persuaded against my better judgment, and I began to enter into the spirit of the thing. I have, however, had indications of late, that warn me to take the advice of my family and friends and retire from this position. None, I think, will charge me with lack of sympathy with Sunday school interests ; and no one will say that I do not work to the last ounce of my energy. There are many things one must do even if one expected to die to-morrow, and these things I shall always do without complaining, but I know that I am not in a fit condition to pile on the work any more. I must pay attention to my business, which is, as you know, of considerable size, and added anxieties have come to everyone in business through the restrictions and new obligations brought by the war.

"I have been more than usually out of sorts this last fortnight, and as I have Mrs. Mackintosh very seriously ill, with the doctor attending twice a day. I have taken the opportunity of talking to him on this matter, and he has told me that I am not in a fit condition to continue this work, and that I must ease off considerably. I cannot explain to the man in the Street just how I am but my family realise that 1 am not safe to be about without someone by my side who understands me. It was entirely out of good will to yourself and the movement, that I consented to accept the office.

But the fact that I am withdrawing from the next year's presidency does not alter my love for the cause nor my desire to help it, and you. I promised the committee £250, so that things could be done in a worthy manner ; that is, if this could be arranged without looking too much of a 'one man show.' If you could look upon me as a 'sleeping partner,' I would always do what I could in finances, up to a reasonable amount, and so assist the committee.

I don't intend to become a cipher in the town now. I shall live as long as I can, in spite of the fact that I am well insured ; but as a sound-headed Yorkshire business man, you will understand my letter quite well, I am sure, and will take the best steps to get me out of the tangle.

Yours sincerely,
JOHN MACKINTOSH."

Good work that cannot be tabulated. Greystones,'

Dear - 22nd Jan., 1920.

"Many thanks for your kind letter of January 1st, 1920. Allow me to reciprocate your good wishes for this year. My, how the time skips along! It is the 22nd already.

"I can imagine the cold crisp day you describe in your letter. We have only a few such days. January has, with the exception of a few days, been mild as spring, and I have a red rosebud out in the garden, but it cannot get sufficient sunshine to burst out. My home overlooks 'The Moor'; you remember the old moor, with the orphanage at the top I face the side, and overlook in the distance, Norland; and beyond, Stainland on the hill side. It is lovely, winter or summer.

I should think that churches and schools are fine institutions in your country, as not only religious homes but social clubs, &c.

"I was at a meeting of the Y.M.C.A. last night at its new permanent home, and find it is going strong,—some 850 members, and more joining all the time. A new 'Boys' Section' just opened, and splendid work is being done. Doctor Burn, the Vicar of Halifax, sat in front of ne, and near by was the president of the Halifax Free Church Council. The Right Hon. J. H. Whitley, M.P., the chairmaii of the House of Commons, presided. [Now Speaker—Ed.]

One is puzzled with the questions that arise respecting The Church's position 1n these days. On the whole, over here I am an optimist. It is not true to say that the churches are empty in England, and whoever says so is wrong. is it true to say 'the house is empty' when you visit a friend and find the door locked, or you find only the old grandmother in? My own church has two hundred and fifty members and more adherents. We have four hundred scholars and about fifty teachers. There is something taking place nearly every night in connection with one department or another. I go to other schools a lot, and visit all kinds of useful and philanthropic institutions, and I find many of theni are staffed by old 'Queen's Road' scholars. Are we to overlook these services in reckoning up, pros and cons? 1 think we must take very great credit for all the men working in the various religious and social institutions of our towns, who were trained to this kind of work in our Sunday schools.

"I don't think I could stand your so many degrees below zero, but I have had sufficient experience of Canadian and American weather conditions to know, that, you have many compensations, and some most delightful days. Whenever we get a similar day, about once every three months, in England, I am telling my wife and others—' This is real Canadian weather.' However it is good to know that we all have compensations. It is 22nd January and all round my garden the crocuses are showing a green leaf quite an inch above the ground. This is because of the mild January we have had. There has scarcely been any snow yet this winter.

"You ask about our health. Glad to say that I am fairly well,—not robust, but still, you know the old Halifax saying, 'walking about to save funeral expenses,' if one may indulge in a little humour about such things. Mrs. \Iackintosh, however, has had rather a bad time recently, having been down with pneumonia for six weeks, but she has every appearance of getting better quickly from now onwards.

"With kindest regards to yourself, your wife and mother.
I am,
Yours very sincerely,
JOHN MACKINTOSH."

Last and unfinished letter, written the evening previous to his passing.

Greystones,'
"Dear 26th Jan., 1920.

"There are money-lenders who lend £100 and demand £150 back. If I am to become a money-lender in the Lord's service, I must have another rule.

I will lend Lioo on condition that your people repay £75 within two years or thereabouts; the £25 being a special inducement to get the money repaid and off their mind.

"The only fear one has when dealing with such loyal and good folk as yours, is, that they may hurt themselves in trying too hard.

"If you think the offer worth passing on let me know, and I will send the money.

"You certainly must have a heating apparatus. Those cheeky little primroses you see in the garden are only laughing at you, and saying., 'Don't bother; it will soon be warm weather.

They are cheeky as I have said, and yet we all love them.

"It only seems the other day since you said (it was early in December) 'You should see the autumn tints down here ; they are lovely.' And now the primroses are coming. Well, Cornwall is a long way from Halifax. Still I have a fine Large rose-bud on one tree in my garden. It got too far to go back and has remained. It is looking very faded, but I don't nip it off because it really did try to get out.

"We are having a glorious January. My Wife has been in bed since December; her room faces south, and she says we have had some sunshine almost every day this year. This helps on the winter, does it not?

'Hurrah! ' Mrs. M. was Up this afternoon, just for one hour; she was in the bedroom in her favourite rocking - chair, wrapped in blankets, &c., &c.

"She is no worse to-night, and she will get braver each day now, until we get her downstairs. Seven weeks in bed for one who has not had one day in bed for thirteen and a half years.

I am sorry you are feeling out of the running just now. I am expecting you to keep up, for I have been saying to myself, ' If friend Crutchley can do, so can I."

So the letter ends in the middle of a sentence. How like life as we see it I A serial story left unfinished here to be continued from the point where it was broken off I A Christian minister requested that his epitaph might be this ;-"Here endeth the first lesson!" Other lessons elsewhere the service continued in the higher sanctuary.

Needless to say the family joyfully carried out the father's wishes and within twelve months the Porthleven fishermen met their obligations and now find their sanctuary as comfortable in the winter as in the pleasant Cornish summer.


 


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