- Project Runeberg -  America of the Fifties: Letters of Fredrika Bremer /

(1924) [MARC] Author: Fredrika Bremer
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November 30. A word now about the journey
hither from St. Louis. I spent my time, for the
most part, quietly in my own cabin, finding
companionship in my books, and in the spectacle
presented by the banks of the river. When evening
came, and with it candles, I had the amusement
of the children’s going to bed in the saloon, for
there were not berths for them all. There was
among the passengers one young mother, not
above thirty years old, with eight children, the
youngest still at the breast. She had gone with
her husband and children to settle in the far West,
in some one of the Mississippi States, but the
husband had fallen ill of cholera on the way, and died
within four-and-twenty hours. And now the
young mother was returning with all her fatherless
little ones to her paternal home. She was still
very pretty, and her figure delicate. Although
now and then a tear might be seen trickling down
her cheek, as she sat of an evening nursing her
little baby, yet she did not seem overcome by her loss,
or greatly cast down. Seven of the children, four
boys and three girls, were laid each evening in
one large bed, made upon a long mattress, exactly
in front of my door, without any other bedding
than this mattress and a coverlet thrown over
them. I was much amused by a little lad of three
years old, a regular Cupid both in head and figure,

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