Stampless folded letter sheet.
Red circular postmark:
WASHINGTON PA FEB 6
Samuel Barnett Esq
Washington Fem. Sem. Feb 5 1840
I wish I were at home with you, for I cannot be happy here. Sometimes I can,
and sometimes I cant., but at any rate It is no difference, spring will soon
be here and then I will get to go home, but when I do I will not be able to
see you for I suppose you will be gone on to the east for goods. O if you
would only let me come home before the examination, I would be very glad, for
I think it is of no use to be exploring our ignorance before so many people
the trustees come every week and I think that is enough. Mrs. Biddle is going
to Pittsburg again the first of April and I hope if I go to school any more
you will let me go to her for I think I could not go to a better place. I
had almost forgot to tell you I had a very sore eye since the beginning of
last week. Dear Father I do not like to ask you for so many things but I
would be very much obliged to you if you would give me a new dress for the
examination if you do I will not have to get one next summer if I stay at home.
I do not care what kind it is but I do not want delane* there are some light
callicos in the store that are very pretty and if you would give it to me,
John would fetch it up. If you give me one, please let me get it made here.
I can get it made here for 87½ cents and it would be made down there I
dare say it would be a grate deal dearer. I would not ask you at all if
all the girls were not getting new dresses and if I do not get one I would
look very shabbly among the rest. Dear Father do not forget for if you do I
will be sure to be made fun of by the rest of the girls. When you write to
brother William give my love to him and tell him to write to me for he
promised. give my love to John an Nathaniel and Mr. Hollands family. I
suppose Nathaniel has never finished his letter to William for my part
I have not. I suppose John has not forgotten the day we came up here for
we got so many upsets.
Your affectionate Daughter Martha
*delane = delaine, originally called mousseline or muslin-de-laine,
a kind of light textile fabric chiefly used for womens dresses; originally made
of wool, now commonly of wool and cotton, and generally printed.
(Source: Oxford English
Occasionally seen spelled delane in old wills, &c, such as
and delane shawls.
Transcription: © Rhett