J.J. HALSEY, PROFESSOR [?] 1883 ORIGINAL MANUSCRIPT AUTOGRAPH LETTERS  SIGNED [ALS] BY A KEEN EYED AMERICAN VISITOR TO ST. JOHN'S NEWFOUNDLAND WHO ADVISES 'I AM DELIGHTED WITH THIS PLACE AS A SUMMER RETREAT'
ST. JOHN'S NEWFOUNDLAND 1883 Very Good Manuscript
On offer are a super, pair  18th Century manuscript letters describing one American's summer trip to St. John's, Newfoundland. "Everything is up or down hill in this town & it is a fruitful field for the cobbler", states the author in this handwritten letter signed "J. J. Halsey". Halsey. The first, on four pages, two conjoined sheets, 8 x 5 in., dated St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada, July 20, 1883 writes to his colleague, Professor [John H.] Hewitt. In full: "I have found a place where it is always cool & where fever & ague [i.e., malaria] cometh not. I have been here three days & during that time the skies here have been clear with no hint of fog, & the temperature has ranged from 70 [degrees] in the noonday to the lower sixties at night. I am delighted with this place as a summer retreat & would advise one who wishes to escape the heat--& isn't afraid of an ocean run of a few days to come here." "The town lies beautifully on a land locked harbor, completely shut in from the storms of the Atlantic, while from the range of hills which shuts it in--opening only 600 feet for an ocean gateway--rising to nearly 600 feet, one has a grand view of the ocean below & of the rugged cliffs on every hand, while the vale in which St. John's lies forms a milder background. Everything is up or down hill in this town, & it is a fruitful field for the cobbler. The only drawback is that there is no good hotel, the present public being cared for in boarding houses. I find the one where I am very fair, however. Our three days' run from New York to Halifax was a delightful one--with a smooth sea & no fog. From Halifax to Cape Race fog all the way--for three days--& a heavy sea running which made things uncomfortable. I was not sick, but supremely uncomfortable. Mrs. Hewitt's generous table had unfitted me for roughing it, & our boat's fare was simply execrable, while the lack of any deck accommodation in the way of shelter made a sojourn on deck very unpleasant." "I have made very pleasant acquaintances here through a letter of introduction to Rev. Moses Henry, a retired Presbyterian clergyman, the patriarch & historian of Newfoundland. I sail tomorrow night for a three weeks' absence on the Labrador coast. I shall go as far north as Nain--in latitude 56 [degrees] 30', a station of the Moravian missionaries among the Esquimaux. I shall see nature unadorned--and men too. The visit to Williamstown was a delightful week of doing nothing but what I pleased in a luxurious way & I expect when roughing it on the Labrador to look back to it with longing. I took a fancy to young Ballard [?; possibly "Bolland"]. He wanted to come along with me. I wish he had. I should enjoy it better with company. I didn't invite you, for I know you wouldn't relish this kicking about in dirty boots. I hope we shall, after all, see Mrs. Hewitt in Lake Forest this fall. With kind regards to all, Mrs. Hewitt, Helen, & yourself, & a kiss for Theo., I am....." Letter 2, on Lake Forest University letterhead, writes on 3 of the 4 pages much the same dated Septermber 19th regarding Newfoundland and Labrador with a wrap up of his trip and then details of the new school year starting. Usual mailing folds, otherwise clean, bright, and fine.