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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box3/Fold3/1904/29
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date23 July 1904
Address FromHanover, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToBetty Molteno
Other Versions
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
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 has been written on this letter in an unknown hand. The name of the addressee is indicated by salutation and content. Schreiner was resident in Hanover from September 1900 to October 1907, after 1902 with visits, sometimes fairly lengthy, elsewhere.
1 Dear Friend,
3 I’m so glad it has been such a good time with your brother, & I’m
4so thankful you are keeping well, at least better.
6 We are having glorious weather here just now the best I have known in
7Hanover in winter. Sharp frost, but for the first time for three years
8no wind.
10 I have got a little coloured girl to come in early morning for a
11couple of hours just to dust & sweep & make the beds. It makes life so
12different: the cooking I can easily manage its the things that cause
13exertion of the arms that I can make me cough. Hanover seems more
14bearable than ever before.
16 A ?sordid fight is going on here now between the Dutch parson & one of
17the leading members of his congregation. Every one is taking sides,
18but he we are keeping quite out of it. It began with the parson’s
19wife saying something against the character of this man’s wife & so
20it has gone on. It is war to the death: the Transvaal war wasn’t in
21it. I never go out. I just stick to my kitchen. I’m rather sorry
22about poor old Neuwvenhout. I think Mrs ?Nienaber who married him
23while we were away is treating him very badly spending all his little
24earnings on herself & her children quite recklessly. The old man has
25such a terrible hunted look. I don’t know what I can do for him. If
26I give him more money she’ll only spend it
28 __________________________________________________________________
30 As I sat writing a terrible blow has fallen on me. ((this is for you &
31Miss Greene only)) Cron came in & told me he had to leave for Cape
32Town tonight he has to go tonight. De Villiers the little attorney
33here is bringing an action against him for one thousand pounds damages
34for some things Cron wrote about him to the chief sherrif in Cape Town.
35 I think he will win the case. What Cron said about him may be quite
36true, but he can’t prove it, & we shall have to pay as he ^I had to pay^
37the £200 to de Beers in Kimberley. It will take every farthing we
38both have in the world & this little house too. Cron is going down to
39ask my brother Will’s advice. Once I would have been crushed by this,
40 but nothing seems to matter to me anymore. Nothing matters, nothing
43 Go I will send you & Miss Greene if you care to have them some letters
44of introduction to come of my dear sweet friends in England; if you
45stay there long enough to want to see any more people.
47 Good bye my darling friend. I must go & take the bread out of the oven.
48 Cron only spends Sunday in Cape Town. He returns at once.
50^Don’t please say one word to him or any one else about the case. ^
52 Good bye dear ones. unreadable I love you both so much.
53 Olive
55 You see I couldn’t leave him any more than a mother could leave her
56little child. He will always be in trouble. If we weather this
57something else will come soon.