4 September 1802 from Philadelphia – Mary McCulloh to Andrew McCulloh
My Dear Brother,
As we have been anxiously waiting a letter from one of you and not knowing the course of your silence, I am again tempted to write you although you have never noticed the other. We are all at button wood hall and we are only forty tons in family. I think I hear you and W.P. say therein is fine houseful indeed. There is, but each on have their separate apartments. Uncle Bringhurst came out. He says he was obliged to come because all his acquaintances had left him and there was no business a doing, for our City never was so soon deserted. Had it not been so it is supposed it would have been very fatal this season but several families have been so imprudent as to return and have been taken ill. I fear we will not be able to return until after the frost. Mama went this day week to Uncle Porters and took three of the children. Uncle Bringhurst and myself went up with her. I suspect her home next week.
Mr. Murdock and family are up at Wolfs and Miss Dolly is with their poor women. I think her afflictions are most at an end. She is now under an observation and cannot rest nights or on day. She is confined to her bed. Aunt Shute had a letter from Uncle Simmons.
McCulloh Papers, 1773-1848, Maryland Historical Society, MS 2110, microfilm reel 4, frame 127
Background – While this post is about scarlet fever rather than yellow fever both were a constant threat, so I’ve put them in the same category.
29 January 1802 – Mary McCulloh to Andrew McCulloh
We have been very uneasy hearing such various reports of the death of my Aunt Pannell and the dreadful incident that Wm Pierce and cousin Ann has lately met with. And your silence through it all has indused me to write to you at this time of night. We have been anxiously waiting a letter from you and my patience is now quite exhausted as we have not had a letter from either of you. Your silence is really unaccountable.
I shall expect an answer by the return of post giving full account of both. It was mearly by accident that we heard of it through Mrs. Barnes.
Mamamea and the children enjoy tolerable good health at present. The scarlet fever has prevailed much through our city and been very fatal in some families. We have had it in our family but we were much favored with it. Uncle Bringhurst buried one of his little ones in that fever. As I have nothing in particular to communicate and the family are all in bed I must bid you adieu. Give my love to James and John & William and tell him his little William has been sick but is well.
From your sincere and affectionate sister, Mary McCulloh
McCulloh Papers, 1773-1848, Maryland Historical Society, MS 2110, microfilm reel 4, frame 119