Anne Steele, Broughton, to Mary Bullock Steele, Yeovil, 24 October 1751.
I am exceedingly obliged to you for your kind Letters and desir’d my Brother to tell you so lest I shou’d appear ungrateful in deferring my acknowledgements, which I now tender and hope you will excuse the delay as I have
had so much employment in my Mothers absence that I find very little writing time – this week we have had noisey company to alter the Garret which is at last done and I hope we shall now have dry weather within doors – Brother set out Monday for Horndean was very well, I am glad to hear by him of your welfare and that your hearing continues, pray my dear Sister take care of your self that you may not get cold and be deaf again – I don’t know when my Mother is to come home I often hear that Sister is tollerable well but believe she is weak for I don’t hear she has yet been down stairs Mother has her health there better then I expected which is a great satisfaction to me. Mr Wakeford and the little Boy were well when we heard last – my Father & self are favour’d with a good share of Health except my usual complaint of the Head ake – I often reflect with pleasure on the kindness of Providence in the many personal and relative blessings I enjoy and wish for a more lively sense of gratitude to the Almighty Donour – I look round me and see every where, objects of pity, and while many of my neighbours complain of sickness, poverty, and distress, I and mine are indulg’d with ease and plenty [paper torn] we are thus favour’d? how can we enough acknowledge [paper torn] [distin]guishing Goodness which thus regards us? –
I shou’d be glad to [paper torn] often of your health and hope as you have been so kind already you will write to me again
I join with my Father in due Comp.ts to your Bro.r and self, and am
Your much oblig’d affectionate humble Servant
Broughton 24th Oct.r 1751.
Please to present my compliments to Mrs.Goodfords and Mrs Daniel.
Text: STE 3/9/ii, Steele Collection, Angus Library, Regent's Park College, Oxford. Address: To | M.rs Steele at Yeovil. Also on the address page is written ’24 Octr 1751’. Mary Bullock Steele (1713-62) was the mother of Mary Steele. Mary Steele Wakeford’s second son, Joseph, was christened at the East Street Independent Chapel on 17 October 1751, the week before the above letter was written. For an annotated version of this letter, see Timothy Whelan, gen. ed., Nonconformist Women Writers, 1720-1840 (London: Pickering & Chatto, 2011), vol. 2, ed. Julia B. Griffin, p. 280.