HBC to her husband, October 3, 1858

Ever dear Husband

I once more take my pen in Hand to let you know I am in the land of the living: my health is very good at present, much better than when you left me and hoping through the mercies of God you are enjoying the same blessing. Although it is hard to be separated I have the happy assurance of one day meeting with one that is dearest to my heart than all else in this poor unfriendly world. I have found friends not in relations since you have been absent. My prayer is that you may be permitted to return home, that you with me may enjoy a long and happy life, that our last days may be our best forgetting all that is past, and looking for a happy future. I did not know till I was deprived of you how much I did love you. I know if I know my own heart, my heart yearns after you in the most endearing ties. There is not a moment in the day but what my mind is on one that is dearer than life to me. The morning you left the house I shall never forget. I have the letter in my possession I found in the stand drawer. I commend you for it. I could never bare for you to of taken your leave of me. I begin to feel rather encouraged to think one year of your time has passed. I want you should write me when you think of coming home. I have written several letters to you. Probably you have not received them. I have received two from you. Your last letter came first by a New York ship. Glad was I to hear. Where I go these letters go and are read and re read over and over. You requested a lock of my hair. I sent one in my letter. You must not be frightened if you should find a few gray ones as I am growing old. I am now stopping at Mattapoisett with Cousin Eliza Merrihew. Her husband is at sea in the Ship Sarah and is espected home this spring. I have not been to Sippican lately. I believe they are all well there. Grandpar has left Fathers long a go and is a boarding at Mr. Holllys on account of their religion. They had a dispute. Father told grandpar to leave the house after they had got nearly all his money out of him. It was a town talk how they served the poor old man but he bore up nobly under his troubles. He is as smart as a cricket, walks from Sippican to Mattapoisett and back. Father is as big a hog as ever. Alls lacking is a tail to finish him. Excuse me for being so vulgar. His children are all down on him for using Grandpar so but Jim and he is a devil. Emilys Husband has never returned home yet and probably never will. She is living at Fathers yet. I do not trouble them very often since they have used grandpar so. I have written you in my other letters of the deaths of our relations. Uncle Isaac Uncle Eben at New York and likewise Josep Barker in California and the particulars. News there does not seem to be any. It is very dull here and is esepected to be this winter. A great many men are out of employment. For my part I do not go out unless I have an errand or go to meeting. I do not have any inclination to go as you are not here to go with me. I am waiting patiently as I can for you. I count the days and hours as they pass and think one the less for you to stay. You cautioned me against Aunt Susan. I thank you kindly for it. You need never fear. I shall never make a confident of her. I have not been in her house but once since you left and then Martha Allen whent with me and staid all night. They are most to important for poor folks. Sarah is a finished hour to speak plain. I must bring my scribbling to a close as it is getting late and my pen very poor. I shall probably have more news to write next time. Write every time you have a chance. I will do the same. It seems to me like seeing your own dear self. May heavens richest blessing attend you through life is my sincere prayer, your loving wife HBC