Sir John Franklin Letter to Lady Jane Franklin (1845 April 02)

40 Lower Brook Street

2 April 1845.

My dearest Love

I have just returned from Woolwich & Deptford victualling offices, the latter being the place whence all our provision is shipped – Crozier & the Purser accompanied me and the final arrangements were made to sending some of the earlier required articles to the ships for stowage.

The ships had made much progress in the rigging which is the only part they can do as long as the shipwrights are at work - The engineers are kept to their promise by daily reminders from Parry.

This influenza for such Mr. Plucket admitted it to be yesterday still keeps me weak though I am much better & gaining strength & my cough is decidedly better. I thought best however to engage a Fly from Town that I might not be exposed to either the Drafts in the Steam Carriages or in the Boats. I knew too that I should have to take Crozier and the Purser to Deptford. I have been kept free from rest and quiet by this proceeding.

Lady Ross accompanied Crozier yesterday to see the ships – Ross himself being away house hunting in Warwickshire. I would have called on her today to see her if I had not to go out of the way to Deptford.

I saw Mr. Grant who is supervising the making of our pemmican at the Clarence Yard - He distressed me much by saying that when he left Eastport yesterday the medical men were much alarmed at the state of poor dear Mary Richardson. She had recovered from her confinement but ague & low fever succeeded which has brought her to the brink of her grave. I fear Richardson is quite worn out with watching & overwhelmed with grief - I am afraid to write to him - Mr. Graves thought I had better not.

Pray come up on which day suits you – I shall be happy to see you on either, but I beg of you if you set out Friday not to fatigue or weary yourself – or arrive too late to get your requests sent before you go to Lady Haddington.

Your going there I consider of immense importance to you & me. I feel certain you will there meet many of the Ministers & perhaps Lord Stanley and Mr. Hope who may see you – though I hope & trust neither of them will have the apeerance [sic] to notice either of us.

The post man's bell has rung some time. Eleanor has gone to the Bath in Great Coram Street in a fly & of course William has gone with her.

I will make an effort to get in tonight but if I do not succeed do not fancy me negligent if it does not get to Brighton before the morning train.

Ever yours affectionately

John Franklin

Page images (4)

About this document ...

  • Written by: Sir John Franklin
  • Written to: Jane Franklin
  • Archive: Scott Polar Research Institute
  • Collection: GB 15 Sir John Franklin/Correspondence
  • Reference number: MS 248/303/82-86
  • Date: 1845 April 02
  • Page(s): 1-4
  • Notes: Franklin discusses arranging for the expedition's provisions with Crozier and delays in rigging the sails owing to delays by the shipwrights in refitting the ships
Sunken ship