1886-87 - USA, Canada, Hawaii, Samoa, New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Egypt
March 4th, 1887
Christchurch, New Zealand
I am very glad for your sake that you are getting more letters from me than I am from you. If I had known the time this country would occupy me I might have given 2 or 3 addresses for New Zealand but must now wait patiently my arrival at Melbourne - we arrived at Lyttleton, the port about 8 miles from this town on Tuesday morning last, having had a beautiful passage from Wellington. A few minutes after our steamer was alongside the wharf and while I was dressing, a stranger suddenly entered my cabin (about 7 o'clock) who turned out to be a brother who had come down specially to give me a greeting. I forget his name, but has not long been here from London. That is a little sample of their kindness. We have had good meetings every night and the Lord appears to refresh the saints in every place. Have been very busy too with my work and shall do a splendid business here, as in all other places visited in New Zealand. Should like you to see my show of samples - I get a nice sitting room and lay them all out on the central table, so that they look really very pretty and, better than that, is that the biscuits are as fresh and crisp as the day they left London which is a regular puzzle to me I assure you. The samples are the same that were sent off after the Railway wreck and it is a wonderful point, that I make the most of too, that they should keep so fresh after all the travels through the tropics too. Hope to get away from here in 3 or 4 days time. All the leading grocers have called and are delighted with our goods and will be very glad to draw their supplies through a ﬁrm who will take them up and keep stock of all leading kinds.
Dear Mr. Powley and several other brethren came down to see me off at Wellington. Mr. Powley introduced me to the Captain of the steamer who is a bright Christian in the Church of England. I spent the whole evening with him in his cabin and another gentleman from Auckland, a Baptist well known to the Captain and we had a very interesting time together. Captain Logan as he is called knows many of the brethren who sometimes take a voyage on his steamer. Dr. Burton and a Mr. Winter and his wife residing here know him very well. Mr. Winter is the manager of the Bank of Australasia at Christchurch and is a very dear and godly man and with his wife in fellowship. I took tea with them yesterday and am invited to dine with them on Lord's day. This is a beautiful place and singular in some respects - chieﬂy in that the whole country for about 200 miles is as ﬂat as a table with abounding streams of water running in every direction - It is surrounded on the sides by lofty ranges of mountains which look very grand. On our journey from the port at Lyttleton our railway pierces one of these mountains and it was a great relief to get through it into the vast plain upon which Christchurch is built. The country around is very charming being so thickly covered with trees - mostly willows planted by the river side and drooping so gracefully over the streams to shade them. I drove out about 2 miles this morning to call upon a gentleman to whom Mr. Stone had given me an introduction - one of the great men of the place - he was not at home but expected from Auckland in a day or two with his family - also called on the leading clergyman here Rev. Mr. Flavel, who is a relative of this gentleman. I was shown into his study and spent some time with him - he had often heard his friend Mr. Studholme speak of Mr. Stone, we spoke about the Lord Jesus too but I thought his name seemed a little strange to him as he spoke of the Lord as the "Great Master" - I guess he is a pretty pronounced ritualist from his garb and the ecclesiastical decorations of his study; however he was very kind and was sure Mr. S. would be very glad to see me the moment he returned. I had no idea it would have taken me so long in New Zealand and if I attempted to rush it I should do nothing - if I meet with anything like the same success in Australia it will probably occupy me until end of April and in this case I shall propose returning home after a call at Singapore, as if I were to call at the countries I had thought of visiting and worked them as I am doing these parts it would occupy a year or more, so I am really beginning to think about home again and if P.F.Co. have more work hereafter and my way is made plain and they are pleased to send me and you are willing for me to go, I may continue the work. I have no doubt from my past experience that to visit the countries of the world generally as I am now doing would bring an enormous increase to their business. The show (and perhaps the showman) would make a good impression as to the perfection attained by P.F. in their manufactures.
I do hope you are keeping well and that the Lord is graciously sustaining and comforting you. Once more with much love to you my dearly beloved wife and our dear children and grandchildren believe me my dearest Angee.
Being affectionate Husband