Water Millock House
12 September 1872
My very dear brother,
I cannot allow many hours to pass untill I take up my pen, to offer my congratulations, upon the birth of a daughter, I had almost made up my mind it was to be a Son. Still I believe there is more comfort in daughters. I am very glad to receive such a good account of your dear wife. I hope she will continue to do well, and the baby too. You say she is a fine child, certainly if she is like my dear self it is not possible, but she must be all right, - of course the first is allways something wonderful, so I expect she will, as to name, I am thinking Jane will have to be one. Poor mother, and not less clear to my memory that darling little sister gone. I am quite astonished when I think you are husband and father. Mr.Irving congratulates you much upon it being a daughter. He says he likes girls far better than boys. I have often wondered how you are getting on with your Harvest the weather is so wet and slow, I hope yours is not so forward as much. I think it will be a great advantage this year, as the probability is we shall have better weather ere long. Wheat I was told was growing a week ago, and certainly this week has been the wettest, and softest. Foot and mouth diseases are very general amongst our neighbours stocks.
(The catalogue lists this as a letter from Mrs.Towns (sister to brother). However the Mr.Irving mentioned could be the writers husband. Water Millock House appears to be in the village of Watermillock, near Penrith, the history of which can be found at http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~ricksgenealogy/old_church.htm.)