Adeline’s War of 1812 Journal: November-December 1814

Adeline’s War of 1812 Journal © by Mollie Pearce McKibbon 2014

This is a fictional journal written by a young woman settled in Edwardsburg Township during the war of 1812.mother-baby-graphicsfairy007b

Sunday, November 27, 1814

Dear Janetta,

         I have been so occupied with my sons, that I haven’t had an opportunity to take up my quill pen until today.  Elizabeth and William stopped by to join us for our Bible lesson and some hymns and stayed to share our midday meal so Vickie is keeping Charles and Andrew amused now that she can toddle around.  I have received another letter from England, this time from Persephone Meldrum, Charle’s married sister.  This is what she wrote:

Dearest Sister-in-Law,

       I do hope you think of me as a sister and know how gratified I am that Charles wrote to us about your marriage.  I fear that you may not have felt welcomed to our family.  You must understand that our father was distraught at the news of Charles’ murder  and naturally upset that he was not able to deal with the necessary inquiry himself. 

         I pray that you have begun to recover from your natural grief.  I expect your children are a great consolation.  I know that my father is about to offer to educate Charles and Andrew here in England and will tell you my husband, Percival Meldrum  Esquire, and myself have a very comfortable accommodation for your sons here at Meldrum Manor.  Nanny Parsons is in charge of our three daughters, Leona, Lavinia and Lydia and is quite prepared to take on two more children.  We will of course, employ an extra tutor for your sons and treat them as if they were ours.  They will also be attended by our own physician Mr. Bell, who is much respected in the highest society.

          Please, do not feel at all compelled to send your children to England, but you need to be informed of the advantages of which they will be assured.  Father has even now making arrangements at Oxford College for their future  studies should they have the aptitude.  If not, they will be certain of a commission in the army. 

I anticipate with much pleasure, meeting you and my two nephews next spring.

With fondest regards,

Persephone Houghton-Meldrum”

Persephone seems to be very considerate of my feelings and it is generous of her and her husband to accept the great imposition of my children into their home, but I cannot bear the thought of being separated from my boys.  I showed Mother and Father the letter and  they only remarked that it seemed a good opportunity for my sons to earn their way in society, but they have been careful not to press me to conform to the wishes of the Houghton family. 

Am I being selfish keeping my children with me, when they could have a comfortable future back in England? I wonder what Robert would advise me to do. Perhaps I should ask him when next he brings his mother to visit. 

Anxiously,

           Adeline

Sunday, Dec. 18,1814

Janetta,

Wonderful news, just before Christmas! Bourke has been captured by White Wolf and Robert.  He was trying to get back across the St. Lawrence.  He has been incarcerated in the jail at the fort in Prescott.  My sons and I will sleep much more safely from now on although I will need to go to Fort Welllington to identify him as my persecutor. I hope this is the last we hear of him.

Happily,

         Adeline

Adeline’s War of 1812 Journal: November 1814

silohuette of Ada MaeAdeline’s War of 1812 Journal: November 1814

© 2012 Mollie Pearce McKibbon

A fictional journal of the War of 1812 as it might have been experienced by a young woman in Upper Canada near Ft.Wellington.  

Saturday, November 14, 1814

Dear Janetta,

Robert and his mother visited us to bring us our mail and so that Regina could see how my two sons are progressing.  Charlie and Andrew are making attempts to sit up now and are reaching out for anything within their view.  They both smile and coo at us and are good natured most of the time.  Charlie tends to be more adventuresome, but Andrew who is quite a mimic, seems to be watching whatever we say and trying to repeat it.  They both enjoy our walks and are growing so fast they will soon need new beds.  Father was thinking of constructing a trundle bed  with a bit of a railing and has begun to look for some nice maple from which to construct it. 

There was a rather unpleasant surprise in our mail.  Charles’ father had written another letter to me personally.  It acknowledged my exoneration in the death of my husband, but offered no apology.  This is the rest of what he wrote:

“My son, Charles’ brother, Everett, informed me that you have two children whom you claim to be Charles’ progeny.  If they are indeed his, I would naturally wish to see them and feel an obligation to provide them with a proper upbringing here in England.  Please be advised that this is not an opportunity for you to make any claim of inheritance for them, or a pension for yourself.  I would simply give them a home, healthy food and a good education so that they might find employment in the army or in the clergy and acquit themselves as any honourable Houghton sons would.  You may think on this subject until the spring, at which time my daughter Persephone will travel to Canada to fetch them.”

Well, you might guess my reply.  No one will take my sons from me.  No one. 

With passionate determination,

Adeline