Autograph Letter Signed from Alfred Musty, an immigrant to Canada, writing to a benefactor [Mr Challinor?] back in England, to describe his 'first year', and including a reference to M. H. Cochrane, 'the great celebrated Herd Farmer of Canada'.

Alfred Musty [Matthew Henry Cochrane (1823-1903), Canadian industrialist and breeder of livestock]
Publication details: 
Huntingville, Eastern Townships, Province of Quebec, Canada. 29 September 1883.
SKU: 13058

4pp., 12mo. Bifolium. 77 lines of text. In good condition, on aged paper, with a little wear and a few closed tears along folds. He begins by describing his 'prospects': 'My first year in Canada I stayed with Mr. Bridges, during which time I got a pretty fair knowledge of the country. I then decided to speculate on a woodland Lot of Fifty Acres, price Five Hundred Dollars. I got my Deeds of the property on payment of half the purchase money the balance to be paid in three years.' He has been 'very fortunate during the past nine months, with every prospect of doing a profitable business during the coming Winter', and thinks he will be able to pay off the purchase money within two years. 'My greatest expense will be in putting up a House upon which we are now busy, and hope to have habitable in the course of another six weeks. During the Winter last, myself, Brother and son managed to clear about six acres of Land ready for croping. [sic]' Referring to M. H. Cochrane he writes: 'I am situated not far from Mr. Cockrane [sic] the great celebrated Herd Farmer of Canada. His Home Farm consists of one Thousand Acres, with a Stock upon it that I think can scarcely be rivaled in England. This is principally the breeding Farm. His feeding stock is kept out upon the prairies, where I understand he has as many as Five Thousand at one time feeding. His Export of Fat. Stock average about thirty head per day.' Musty and his family are well, despite the 'intense cold of the Canadian Winter', during which 'for nearly four months the snow was three feet deep in this part of the country with frost from Twenty to Thirty degrees below Zero.' He believes that the following year will decide his prospects, and has 'the greatest faith in doing well'. The letter is addressed to 'Dear Sir' and the only indication of the identity of the recipient is the following: 'My Wife send [sic] her best respects to Mrs. Challinor and yourself and says she shall never forget the kindness you accorded to us on our leaving England'. The author also sends his regards to 'Mr. and Mrs. Charles Challinor' and family.