[The handwriting is difficult to read at several points in this letter.]
From Birmingham. It gave Ludlow great pleasure to hear from Tooth – it had seemed so long that she was considering writing herself but then Tooth’s letter arrived.
Ludlow had hoped to see Tooth before now but has been prevented by ‘affliction in the family. I think I have told you the Lord generally gives me some particular manifestation of his loving kindness before a trial. One Saturday while engaged in my work, the words I have engraven there on the palms of my hands were very sweetly applied to my mind. The next morning, my second little boy was suddenly seized with convulsions. He grew so ill that in a few days we dispaired of his life, but I was comforted. The words of the Psalmist “Thou who has shown me gred[?] & sone[?] troubles shall quicken me again”. When my little girl was ill, the word were “The everlasting doors shall soon the saint receive” & so it was, but my little boy is spared to me a little longer…’
Her husband [William] has been laid aside by sickness for some weeks. He was so ill one day that he felt that he was dying – he is now quite restored although is still quite weak. He left for Bridgnorth yesterday – the air there has been of great service to him on previous occasions. Ludlow hopes that he will be spared as the thought of widowship is upsetting. ‘The people tell me I shall not have him very long however the Lord liveth…’
Mrs [Jane?] Loxton and Miss Turton were very kind to the Ludlows during their recent troubles. Miss [Turton] often talks of Tooth and asked that her love be sent on. Mrs Loxton also asks after Tooth and similarly sends her resepects.
Tooth would be delighted with the Superintendent minister here – both he and his colleague appear to be saints indeed.
Is Tooth thinking of visiting Birmingham? Or does she expect her sister [Rosamund]? Ludlow cannot come to Madeley until her sister can look after the children – she has sent to find out when that will be. Ludlow shall perhaps come alone this time – she cannot have the youngest child with her as he is very troublesome.
Ludlow often thinks and dreams of Madeley and is pleased that the work is progressing there.
In a postscript, she mentions that Mrs Francks has just called or she would have written more.