Family Scrapbooks  >  Westcott  >  Letters  > Rebecca Orange  >  Letter to unnamed friend

Rebecca Orange (1798-1873), Cheshunt, Herts.
Letter to unnamed friend, 1864

[some punctuation and visual emphasis added e.g. Sapsworth]

Rebecca Orange (1798-1873), spinster, was a lifelong resident of Cheshunt, Hertfordshire. Her letter appears to be addressed to a woman, elderly and infirm, probably with some knowledge of people in Cheshunt. One candidate is Mary Ann Barlow née Westcott; her mother Martha Westcott lived in Cheshunt, dying there in 1837. Mary Ann may have been her mother's companion -- certainly, she did not marry until 1838: however, we cannot be certain of this identification because she died in December 1862, two years prior to the date written on this letter. Mrs Sapsworth was Mary Ann's niece Eleanor née Henman.

Decr. 23rd / 64

My very dear old Friend

Another year [h]as nearly rol[l]ed away and we are the spared monuments of his spared mercy / oh may it be to glorify his holy name. I hope you are still enjoying the great blessing of health. thou[gh] no doubt very feeble. but what an unspeakable mercy / you can look forward to / that rest which remaineth for the people of God / A few more rol[l]ing suns at most will land us on fare Canaans coast where we shall sing the song of grace and see our glorious hiding place / Oh glorious hour oh blest abode. I shall be near and like my God / and flesh and Sin no more controle the sacred pleasures of the soul.

may you enjoy much of your Saviours presence / and then it will be a happy Christmas to you and also to Mr and Mrs Sapsworth / give my kind regards to them both and tell them I do hope when the Lord is pleased to call you home they will write and tell me / when you answer this / let me know what Family they have / I hope her health is better than when you wrote last, and I should like to know how her dear Mother and Sisters are /

So my Sister is quite well but very feeble / the people where she lives are very kind to her / for which I feel very thankful / for Mr Meyers [h]as a very bad cold / Mrs M is a little better / her dear little girl my pet has been very ill with her chest and Bronchiteis / her Throat has been very bad and she is so weak and they can scarce get her to take any thing / the Dr ordered her to have 2 glasses of Sherry a day mixed with water / they were so very anxious about her, and I do not wonder / she is so loving and so good / she loves you to talk about Jesus / says ["]Aunty I think the sweetest verse in the testament his [']Suffer little children to come unto me and forbid them not for of such is the kingdom of heaven['"] / you may be sure how pleased I was / we have often had a nice little bit of talk. I feel though. I love her very much / I freely give up into the loving arms of her Saviour / if her life is spared may it prove a great blessing to her Parents and Brother who is very different / so self willed.


With respect to myself I have very much to be thankful for / my Breast at times discharges at the nipple which is very much drawn in and so tender I can hardly at times bear my things to touch it / still it might have been much worse by this time. Mr Sharp says I am highly favoured / I know I am / he is a god of love and I feel my high Priest is touched with the feeling of my infirmities and my dear friends pray and I hope ever will / and I feel so wonderf[ul]ly supported / God is faithful.

My dear Brother Benjamin [h]as lost [h]is only Son who [h]as been very ill for two years / he could not think why the Lord should so afflict him / for he was a good Son / and so he was / but he knew not what was in his heart / but the Lord opened his eyes / then he cried ["]God be merci[ful] to me a sinner / do you think Father he would hear and save such a sinner["] he said "yes my dear / the blood of god own Son cleansed from all sin["] / after some time he said ["]I am satisfied happy / come Lord Jesus come quickly["] / he was 26 / has left a wife and one child / Mrs Daniel Orange has lost a grandson 9 years old / he was thrown from a Horse and killed. the rest are pretty well /

now may the best of blessing, rest on you at eventide / may it be light in your soul / is the sincere desire of your affectionate Friend R Orange at Mr Macers Turners Hill Cheshunt Herts


do write Soon / I long to hear / if you are not able / get Mr or Mrs Sapsworth to write for you

Thanks:  Anne Child