George Fox


Dear Arthur and Family,

We have often wondered how you are all going on. No doubt you all have altered very much as we have done here. I am sorry to say that Father died last December & was buried at the Wesleyan Chapel, Bradwell. It is 24 or 28 years since since mother died & the grave had never been opened.

My wife died last May after 6 weeks’ illness. We buried her at St. Lukes. She left me with 2 lads, 2 years 10 months & 6 months, the youngest a perfect model of his mother, called Arthur Harold. I sent him to be nursed at Bradwell & he grew wonderful. At 7 months old he was bigger than plenty children at twice his age but he died at 11 months old (convulsed inwardly).

The other lad John Reginald will be 4 next July. Not over-strong but exceptionally quiet with a grand retentive memory. My mother-in-law is house keeping for me. We have servant-maid, man, horse & turnout, Engine (steam) boiler, enameled steam [illegible] mincers & appliances all on the very latest principles.

Emma Jane lives at Bradwell & has 5 bonnie children. Jemima is not married yet. Hannah Rebecca is married & has one child. Delia is married & lives at Bradwell. Her husband, Charles Bancroft, Job Middleton’s grandson, bought my father’s house, buildings & etc. some 12 months ago for £400.00.

He (father) had gangrene set in the left foot & it killed him. I used to go and see him once a week. I made his will & he left mother the interest of his worth while she lives. I & Hannah Rebecca are the executors to father’s will, he has left us power to sell all or part or anything, so we are having a sale to pay his just debts & testamentory expenses on March 28th.

He left Emma Jane, Jemima, George, Hannah Rebecca & Delia share & share alike. He left you out. I tried my level best for him to leave you like the rest, but he said he would not. If I would not follow his instructions, he should let some old will stand. I wanted a new will because in that old will he had left me everything he had – land, homestead, furniture, down to a match box.

After father’s funeral & before the will was read, no one knew how things was. So I said to all concerned, “Mr. Z. Walster, before this will is read, there are some of the family who will be minus of a share. Are you all agreeable, no matter who it is that is left out, to share with them a portion to make us all alike?” Each & all answered yes, so you, old chappie, shall have as share equal to mine at mothers’ death. You must not build your hopes of having much money out of father’s estate. There are 3 fields left & but he has had some horrendous law reverses, one cost £100.

I should be very pleased to hear from you any time. There was a [illegible] report of your being on your way home again, but signs cannot be so bad with you as they are here. Everybody complaining about bad trade & short work.

With a hearty, hearty wish that 1896 will be the best year you have had is the earnest desire of your affectionate brother,

George Fox

523 Cheetham Hill Road
Manchester

P.S: Remember all my family to yours, Mrs. Fox as well as the rest.

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Undated, likely late 1887

My Dear Brother and Sister,

I am sorry I could not answer your letter before now, but I have been busy and was glad to hear you had a safe journey over the sea and you had settled down in home again and have seen about the policies for you, and I could not make anything of them but it strikes me I must have been to the wrong place, so send me the address and I will do my best for you about them.

I have good news for you, my Uncle Horatio has died and left Arthur 160 Pounds and all of us the same and us three young ones the extra from my Grandfather’s share that was lost in the bank so I think after all his greed, he has died worth eleven thousand pound, and divided it share and share alike. The Bradwells he has left only 100 each as they was more of a family than us, so you see there is fuel for a the fire, yet Emma Jane and Hannah are come to live at Manchester and my father has been over today to tell me about the money and he asked for your address and he said he would get George to write to you with love.

I must close hoping this will find you all in good health as it leaves me at present. With love and kisses to my little niece and the boys and all,

Your loving sister,
Jemima Fox

Church Inn
Clayton, near Manchester

August 26th, 1888

Dear Brother & all:

I was very glad indeed to hear from you. I thought you had quite forgotten one. They say out of sight, out of mind, & I fancied it was true.

The weather here has been dreadfully wet all summer. Many acres of grass went, yet at Dronfield they would give anyone crops that would go & get them. The weather is so unsettled.

There have been lots of changes since you left. We have a bus running opposition from Hathersage 3 days a week, one from Castleton 4 days a week, M. Hall Bridge Inn, Bradwell 4 days a week.

John Cheetham is dead & they have had a sale of 5 horses, 3 heavy carts, dog trap, spring cart , [illegible, possibly:] 2 buggies & harness. I bought the best of the [buggies] for £8.15.0 & Michael Hall the other for £5.0.0

I am running to Sheffield 5 days a week now, we had some cussing for it on Saturday August 19th. I & the Castelton [illegible] was running from Sheffield & going down by Fox House. He could neither pull up his nor keep right, both of us having heavy loads on & I had 35 passengers he had 15. We both had 4 horses & in as first. He came pass me at full gallop, he runs his 2 & 2, you know, 4 in hand style. He nearly ran into me & when he got past I pulled up at Fox House but away he went until he came to the bend in the road just below & down he come with such a crash, both leaders running his wheelers straight over them. [illegible] one horse nearly killed and frightened everybody.

They picked one up for dead, but she is coming round all right; his [illegible] it is a smart one. They call it the Surprise. Large gilt letters & he advertises to run the journey in 2 hours & 50 minutes. He has 10 good horses to do the work. He drives in top white hat & yellow kid gloves, quite a proper swell.

I have got six of [the] best horses in the world, I can leave any of them anywhere. 3 5 year olds, 2 6 year olds & one aged the one we bred. They are the finest horses that ever was in Bradwell, not one failure. They all stand 16 hands high.

3 Bay Black Points
2 Blacks
1 Roan

The Bradwell people back me hand & heart. They all call M. Hall a rogue. We are pulled out-of-doors with work.

The new railway is coming, they have given the tenants notice for the land.

(Job) Charles Middleton has bought Top Cupalo & is going to build a fine house for himself.

Emma Jane has got married to T. Jeffrey of Smalldale this last weeks. They live at Leeds. There was 19 of us sat down to dinner. It was held at home. We had a proper time of it, I can tell you.

John Bradwell, Newburgh Arms, was taken ill & died very sudden & M. Hall has been at Hassop over taking it & everybody is crying shame over him. Father went & saw Taylor for himself & I am the next of list when Mrs. Bradwell leaves.

I think we are all very well in health, which I sincerely hope you are enjoying, give my kindest affections to your family, receiving the same yourself, [illegible] I remain,

Your true & sincere brother,
George Fox

Bradwell

PS: Tell Herbert & the lads to stick to their school & make men of themselves.