Letter

Scope and Content

From N. Clapham at Honley to Mary Fletcher at Madeley. Clapham should have written before now in compliance with dear mother's wishes [Anne Walker], but was unable fora long time to bring herself to do it. Hopefully, Fletcher will understand bearing in mind Clapham's situation.

Clapham has lost such a parent as not many children are blessed with. The last time that Clapham wrote, it was to say that Walker was a little better. Her condition remained that way until last Saturday July 28th when she took suddenly worse. On Sunday an express [letter] was sent to Harrogate where Clapham's father was thought to be, visiting his youngest daughter who has been in a poor state of health fora while. Unfortunately he had in fact left on his journey to the North a few days previously. Mother was for the most part asleep, but when awake expressed a strong desire to see him. The family wrote several letters but for lack of a proper 'direction' none of them reached him. By pure accident, he met with someone on the road who gave him the news. He immediately abandoned his business and travelled home. The day before he arrived, his family prayed that the Lord would bring him home so that he might see his wife one last time before she died. He arrived between 10 and 11 at night and she recognised him as soon as he walked in the room. She was not at the time able to speak to him but the following morning, was able to talk.

On Monday the 13th, 'she pointed to the foot of the bed, and cryed aloud, "0 listen, thou wants to make thine appearance, but glory be to God, thou art for ever conquered, get thee behind me, thou hast no power over me". She seemed to have no particular conviction of her death, till Tuesday the night before she dyed, when she told us she should not be [unreadable word] and desired my father would read her [unreadable word] 37 Psalm, and the 54 chapter of Isiah, whilst he was doing it, she did indeed rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory. "0" said she, "how my soul is filled with God"…this she repeated several times, adding "Christ is all in all". She was apparently dying all night, about five o'clock, in the morning, she desired my father might be called; but when he came, we could none of us tell what she said'. She died peacefully at 10 o'clock on Wednesday 15 August.

Last Sunday, [John] Booth preached her funeral sermon from Hebrew 12:14. Afterwards he read a little account which was written during her illness in the Spring [subsequently published in the Arminian Magazine 17888]. Many people were present in the congregation and seemed very attentive.

It has been a very trying time but God has been their support. Personal matters are discussed with regard to the bereavement. Father is as well as can be expected.