John H. W. Pettit letters to his family in England, illustrated with sketches by the writer, 1852-1868 - Page 216

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My Dearest mother
It is out of my power to write you a long letter, now [nor?] to you I'm sure wish it.  As you get all the news if news it maybe called from other apostles home  - The object of these few lines is to acknowledge the receipt of your communication and [ indecipherable] I am at all times [glad?] to  hear from you.  Enclosed is a little note to Mary which please enclose in a cover and send her - I suppose I am wrong in styling her little, but you must know I can only recollect an old fashioned, interesting, busy little girl - her letter almost startled me at first - it made me think I must have been away a long time -  All these young branches shooting up would no doubt astonish me - as I only know things as they were

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