»  Letter: Sunday, April 21, 1996

    E.A. Derbyshire to John & Lynette Derbyshire

  Image of Letter

Envelope front

Envelope back

Page 1

Page 2

Page 3

Page 4

Page 5

Page 6

Postcard front

Postcard back



  Transcription of Letter

Mrs J.R. Derbyshire
Lister House

John & Linette Derbyshire
15, Chestnut Street
NY 11743

Sunday, April 21st

My darlings John & Rose & children

Nearly forgot your St. George's Day[1] card but here it is with a recent picture of Abington Street to show Nellie & Daniel later where you lived once. It is a beautiful day, sunny & quite warm. I sat up on the patio this morning but had to have help to get there. My legs have got much worse, especially my left leg, but though bloody, still unbowed.[2] Some good came out of my little splat this week  I've been taken out in my wheelchair & to the shops by car. Judy, one of the carers  drives Pegs car, she doesn't seem to be driving herself any more. She has a taxi now if she goes out, which isn't very often. Auntie Win is 90 today.[4]. I forgot to get her a card so I rang her up yesterday & Mu, Fred were there so I killed 2 birds so to speak.

Rose, my darling, I think it must have been a shock to you to find that horrible tick on Nellie. how scared she must have been. Thank God there was no repercussion  I have heard they burrow under the skin & lay eggs there. I makes me shudder to think of. You were very Brave to deal with it so well, Rose. Do you think she got it from Boris? I don't know anything about ticks except they suck blood. I hope she's forgotten it by now. You too. Rose, John tells me how well Daniel is doing. I'm longing for the pictures to come. I don't write very well now darlings so forgive scribbles & mistakes. Love you all very much & think of you every waking moment & carry pictures of you in my mind. Hope the book continues to do well & some good comes of it. I'll wait a day or two to see if the pictures come so all for now.

Monday   The Queen was 70 yesterday & it was also the London Marathon  I watched it as it goes through the Isle of Dogs  I saw the Cutty Sark, remember the lovely time we had there  How the time does go. It's pouring rain today, what a change. No pictures yet I'll wait a day or two

Tuesday   The pictures came this morning & of course theyre so lovely. I pore over them for hours  When Judy's seen them I'll put them in the album  I usually do that on a Sunday when I spend the morning on the albums. I'll do as you say John, but wait & see. I understand Peggy is 65 in July. Though see says she's 59. She is having trouble now with her left arm. I can't help but feel sorry for her, knowing what she might have to face  I can't see her coping much longer, the "girls" carry her now & do more caring for her than the residents  The greatest book I have here is my own little wash room & toilet! It is wet, grey & cold again after 2 lovely days at week end. I just stay in my room, just emerging for meals! My paper has run out now darlings so with much loves hugs & kisses to my little Princess & her sweet brother
As ever   X X X X X
Loving Mum   X X X X

Both children are delightful!!

[Back of enclosed postcard]

Thought you'd like to have this for Nellie — Show her where you grew up.



  1. April 23, England's National Day.
  2. The reference is to William Ernest Henley's poem "Invictus," which is sometimes called "the atheist's prayer":


                    by William Ernest Henley (1849-1903)

    Out of the night that covers me,
        Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
    I thank whatever gods may be
        For my unconquerable soul.

    In the fell clutch of circumstance
        I have not winced nor cried aloud.
    Under the bludgeonings of chance
        My head is bloody, but unbowed.

    Beyond this place of wrath and tears
        Looms but the horror of the shade,
    And yet the menace of the years
        Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

    It matters not how strait the gate,
        How charged with punishments the scroll,
    I am the master of my fate:
        I am the captain of my soul.
  3. I have April 22 as Auntie Win's birthday, so one of us is wrong.