Letters to Grace: Writing Home From Colonial New Zealand
This is a second-hand copy of the book Letters to Grace: Writing Home From Colonial New Zealand edited by Jean Garner and Kate Foster.
Condition: this is a used book. It is in good condition. One thing to note is the UV patches from two former retail stickers - one on the front and one on the back. The stickers are gone, but while the cover faded from UV light around them, the places where the stickers were has been left more or less in the original colour. Besides this, very slight shelf wear around the edges and corners.
Publisher: Canterbury University Press
Condition: used (good)
From the blurb:
This remarkable collection of letters provides a rare female perspective on life in colonial Canterbury, when letter writing was the only way to keep a close relationship with family members on the other side of the world.
The writers were four women of the Hall family. Unlike Charlotte Godley and Lady Barker, whose correspondence, experiences and impressions of the time have been widely promulgated, the Hall women were anonymous members of the middle class in England with no ties with the aristocracy. But ironically, the letters are significant partly because all four were the wives of public men in New Zealand, Rose being wife of Sir John Hall, who was Premier of New Zealand 1879-82.
Sarah, Agnes Emma and Rose were married to three Hall brothers, and the youngest correspondent was Agnes' daughter, Agnes Mildred. The recipient was the elder women's sister-in-law, Grace Neall, in England. The women were typical of their time in that their lives and their letters focused on children, household duties, health, housing and servants. Outside the home, church, shopping and social events were the main topics, with Rose also occasionally commenting on her husband's political life.
The letters came to light in England in 2008, found by a great-grandson of Grace, Tim Rix. He sent them to his distant cousin Kate Foster.
Accompanying the annotated transcriptions of these letters, published here for the first time, is a superb essay by historian Jean Garner, introducing the Hall family and placing them, and this correspondence, in an appropriate historical context.