August-December 1842

The Collected Letters, Volume 15


TC TO THOMAS BALLANTYNE ; 9 September 1842; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18420909-TC-TB-01; CL 15: 83-84


Troston, Suffolk, 9 Sepr., 1842

My dear Sir … I have been in this country on a visit among friends for about a week; I came to bring home my Wife who had already been here for some time. It was only yesternight that I returned from a three-days ride into Oliver Cromwell's country, Ely, Huntingdon, Cambridge, etc.; a region full of interest to me. The general condition of the Farm labourers, though not offensive to the mere cursory eye, is I fear full of misery. “Milk?” said an old man, to whom I was speaking at Mildenhall,1 the other day, “Lord bless you Sir, they never see milk!2 They take a little hot water with salt and pepper mixed, to soak their bit of bread in, and breakfast on that!” If the Heavens would be pleased to send us another Oliver— But alas the Heavens do not very often send us such! …