May 8, 1862
My Dear Mamma
I take up my pen in a hurry to write you these few lines and send you the Bill of my Clothes. I got the clothes some days ago and should have sent the Bill before as I am afraid the merchant of whom I bought the clothes will expect the money the first of next week. The Tailor got the trimmings and promises to have the coat done this week. I hope you will not think it too expensive goods but I could not find anything to suit for less than 10 shillings per yard that was the price of the piece I got but he put it at 1.20 for me. You will see the Bill amounts to $11.90
To this act. $7.11 for tailor
I will get a good one such as they wear here mostly it will last a couple of years and I can wear it in the fall when I [?] a straw one if you could spare one $25,00 that would enable me to look like something with what was over the bill I have given you. I would get a light linen or alpaca coat to wear in the shop on the hot days and save my other - and I must have another waistcoat for Sunday a necktie etc. I know dear Mamma I am a great expense to Papa but the way I am situated I cannot help it. I have pretty hard times here. I can tell you sometimes I find it hard work to put up with Mr. Cal[?] Why I can hardly get time to write to you and have to snatch a few moments now and then to scratch this down so you must excuse the writing all the time. I have to myself is one hour from 8 to 9 o'clock in the evening. Last night I took a longer walk than usual and was so minutes behind time and he gave me a pretty sharp taking to [?] me I was to be on hand night and day to attend to his business and had no right to go out at all. Still I will hand one and try and get the 2 years over and perhaps at my next place I may have better times. When you write tell me all about the moving and how you found the Chippawa folks. I hope to hear from you the first of next week enclosing I hope the $25, for my old winter clothes are beginning to look bad I can tell you. Do not think hard of me wanting so much. I really try to do with as little as possible and do not spend any money as others of my age do, but I must conclude, hoping you are comfortably settled at home by this time. With love to Papa and yourself.
Your affectionate son,
Donald M. Forbes
P.S. I hope you will be able to read this scrawl. It is not the best writing in the world but you must remember I am writing as fast as I can make the pen go. D.M.F.