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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box2/Fold1/Jan-June1899/10
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter DateFriday 31 March 1899
Address FromJohannesburg, Transvaal
Address ToQueenstown, Eastern Cape
Who ToWilliam Philip ('Will') Schreiner
Other VersionsRive 1987: 348
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
Legend
The Project is grateful to Manuscripts and Archives, University of Cape Town, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Manuscripts and Archives Collections. The date of this letter has been derived from the postmark on an attached envelope, which also provides the address it was sent to. Schreiner was resident in Berea, Johannesburg, from December 1898 until late August 1899.
1 Good Friday
2
3 My dear Laddie
4
5 Thanks for your letter. Of course I knew you would be delighted to
6help the little mother, & as ^(when^ she wrote to very much displeased
7at my having written to you) – not only you but dear little Fan had
8more than once said to me how delighted you would be to do anything
9you could for her; but she was so independent. I quite think the dear
10old man at Eastbourne will continue to send the £5 a unreadable month,
11 though he did seem very distressed about money affairs when I was
12home, said talked of little else. He allows Wilfred £800 a year he
13told me, & I’ve no doubt in other ways the lad bleeds him rather dry!
14
15 It is melancholy to think you are giving Mrs Mulligan £26 a year when
16you must have such urgent need for every penny in your present
17position; but people in a perfectly unjustifiable manner by making
18demands, may almost compel one to minister to their wishes. I know by
19experience this is so.
20
21 I hope you will feel much fitter for your trip, dear. It will be a
22fine memory for the Lad. I can hardly tell you how I long see the
23children.
24
25 It was a great relief to see old Sievewright is out. But I do hope
26there is no fear of old Hofmeyer taking him up again. We are going to
27hear Oom Paul speak in the square tomorrow if the weather allows of my
28going out. Reitz seems to be making himself very popular in
29Johannesburg. Cron is doing well in his office: says the work is very
30un-intellectual all scheming & guessing what other men are going to do.
31 He however seems to be very popular with some of the clients. They
32had a case the other day in which an English miner was concerned, &
33Cron had most of the work to do. When the case was over, & the bill of
34the firm had been sent in & paid, the man came to Cron & gave him a
35present, for himself of £10 (ten pounds). They all said in the office
36that such a thing had never occurred there before, within memory of
37man! He has a great attraction & influence of over a certain class of
38very simple straight minds, such as Kaffirs, farmers, & working men
39often have. It’s a pity his work doesn’t lie entering among them.
40
41 Good bye dear Laddie
42 Your little sis who would give a great deal for a few long talks with
43you,
44 Olive
45
Notation
Rive's (1987) version omits part of this letter and is also in a number of respects incorrect.