October 26, 1956
Dear Emma,

Under separate cover, sending Grandpop's books to you as promised, they are well over 100 yeas old & priceless.

From memo's from Dad, this is about as much as I remember.

John Duffus, born October 31, 1840, Dundee, Scotland. Died Feb. 26, 1912. Buried in London, New Jersey. Had two sons. John Robert Duffus (Your father). George Stuart Duffus (Dad).

I believe they had a sister, who died in infancy.

Grandpop lived in Passaic & was a 32nd or 33rd degree Mason, also a Past Master, a large picture of him is still hanging in the Masonic Temple, Main Ave. & Temple Place.

Dad was also a 32nd degree Mason 25 yrs., his pin came after he died, but was on his coat at burial.

Do you have any pictures of Grandma Duffus? She was beautiful. After she passed on, Grandpop remarried, whom I don't know, she had very sharp features. Viola when cleaning out gave them to me & when she was sick, destroyed.

I believe Grandpop's wife was a sister to Aunt Sarah (Coombs) that's what the relation to the folks in L.I. come in, Amy, Lib, Deb & Evelyn.

Viola sent you a picture of Grandpop when he was sent to Madagascar with his two guards by Queen Victoria, a special representative. Somehow, down the line, i was left with his sword which was inside his cane. I left it with Viola & after Dad died, she sold it to an Antique Shoppe in Clifton.

Grandpop certainly knew how to express the Sermons in books & nice handwriting.

Let Howard and Sophie read these but hold on to them. Jim wanted me to keep, but I am leaving them to you.

So much for this.


I went home on Viola's birthday & stayed over & what a picnic, we had - did a week's running around in two days. Jim's sister had her the previous Sunday for a birthday dinner. Viola is over there a great deal. On the Friday I was out, Lillian Anderson (the girl the Hnason's brot up) had us for luncheon, then we went to Tuxedo, thru the Mts, the foliage was beautiful, came down to Esther's in Fairlawn, N.J. (mother's brother's child) who has two beautiful daughters. Kay is 18 & starting her second year at Flint, Mich. for a M.D. Dottie Jean is 15 & will go to College. Then we stopped at Dad's former home. I met the young people who bot our home, they have three small boys, then Kitty & Tom came over in evening, the next day we visited in Rutherford to see my friends who I worked with 40 years ago & had more eats. I put on 5 pds. in two days, but now that I'm home & cleaning again, losing it.

All that I went thru with Viola, I feel repaid by the wonderful way she looks, on weight in face, which she needed and has changed for the better.

Viola just called me - 9:30 AM & wanted to know if she should sell car & go by train, which I think is a good idea as it is difficult to get someone to ride down with her. The Hanson's are going Sunday by bus - they don't know what they are in for as it is a 36 hr. ride, no Hotel stops - we went down that way for a change - never again.

I told Viola, she could buy a car in Florida & when she came home - six months from now, we would come down by train & come home with her as Jim will have time then as he lost all his leave this year with sickness & also when Viola was sick.

Viola has sent a deposit down from Nov. 1st, but I went to stay & vote, we are all for Ike.

Today, being Friday, must get going on apt., but I told Arthur I would send out today.

Regards to all the folks.

Love Lillian.


13 Diana Rd.
Carmarthenshire, Wales
October 14th, 1956

Dear Viola,

I have had your letter 2 days ago & my daughter says I'd better write to you. Well I'm sure its just being by yourself
much, it gets on your nerves.

It's a pity you had to go to the hospital, but it's a good thing you are well again. Sidney like you, has been in the hospital for 4 days, under observation and xray. She is home again & feeling better. My other daughter has been here for 3 months looking after us both & we are enjoying the company. One of the grandchildren who lives in a caravan now came with her husband & two children for a week end to see us & then toured all over Wales visiting ruined casltes & seaside resorts, they enjoyed it very much.

We have had lots of visitors some just staying & others just calling, two people we had not seen in 20 years, so it was nice having a chat over old times.

Glad to hear you heard from Lillian & Emma. We hear from Emma occasionally.

We have had the film of Billy Graham showing at our cinema this week, but we did not go. I never go to the pictures. Hoping you enjoy St. Petersburg.

Love from Aunt Joey (96 years old)


29th Aug. 1945

13 Diana Rd.
Carmarthenshire, Wales

Dear Emma,

Your last letter dated 20 July took a month to come. So will answer your inquiries. Tuesday 29th August is to-day and we have not got away for a holiday yet but expect to get a little sea-side place on the 12th of Sept. if alls well.

We have been kept hard at it what with Drs. & nurses doing their utmost to get Dorothy better it all failed & she died on the 8th of July. She said if she was to die she hoped it would be quick.

The disease got a hold of the bowels & they didn't work & the hole they left open at the side gave little relief as she swelled tremendously. She had no comfort after eating. The last week she slept alot & so had little pain. She was 4 hours unconscious on Sat. morning & about 2 o'clock passed away without wakening. It has been a sad sad blow to her husband & Sidney & me as we were beside her all the time which was nearly a year. She was 49 years of age & my youngest, the first of my girls to go.

The people were most kind 23 wreaths were put on the grave & they had a very lovely service in the church.

You ask about Jeanie & Isa. They live still in the old home in Dundee where your Grandfather once came to see us & that is over 300 miles from here. I have not seen them since they came to Birmingham where we lived & that was when we celebrated our 50th anniversary or (Golden Wedding). All the relatives came & had dinner & tea all together & a wedding cake. When the war came Dot said come to stay with me, as our home was bombed & I have never seen it since, but now have let it.

My daughter Mabel came up from London where she lives now & stayed with us 3 weeks & helped to nurse Dot. The pilotless planes still go there and we are kept in suspense.

Ian & Gordon Davis my grandsons are in Italy & seem quite happy & well.

I had a P.P.C. from Viola & her father when on holiday the 8th of July, but I have written to them a month ago. Like you I hope Howard & John are still safe but victory seems assured now.

You asked what other relatives I have in Scotland. My eldest sister's (Nellie) 2 daughters live in Edinburgh, Scotland, one a widow, her son is in the army & abroad. My other sister's (Bessie)
daughter lives in Glascow & has a son & daughter. Jeanie & Isa are on holiday now with her. That's a 2 1/2 hour journey from Dundee. My sisters Nellie & Bessie are both dead. Bessie's son lives near Dundee. So that's all. My youngest sister Teenie (Mrs. Gibson) lives in Mansfield, England. Her husband is retired. I went to see her a year ago, she has 2 daughters married both without any family. I think you can visualise us all better now I am the eldest living.

Sidney & I both keeping well now the strain is off but I don't know what the future holds for us. It's not quite the same now Dot has gone. She left a good sum of money to Sidney L 50 each to 7 nephew & nieces. So she knew she had to die but faced it bravely without a tear.

Yours affectionately,

Aunt Joey

P.S. I hope your boy is still in training & Dorothy well. Have
you been away?


13 Diana Rd.
Carmarthenshire, Wales
8th Dec. 1948

Dear Emma,

It's about time I was writing you if I want you to get it for Xmas. Well there's a good lot to tell you.

Since I wrote you last my son-in-law has married again & gone next door to live. her husband died 2 yeas after our Dot died. She is a very nice girl. We know her quite well & are very pleased he has married.

So now we have got our furniture back again after being stored for 6 years. Of course we have not nearly so much to do & are very happy. We got all kis furniture, what he didn't need away to the sale room & a lot we didn't want either so it all looks very nice. Sidney, he's had a lot to do with it all, but looks very nice now.

Well, we asked a lot of our friends down becasue we hadn't had any of them down before. We had my grandaughter for a week, then a friend who had come every year, but lodged with a lady. She was able to come here. She stayed over a fortnight, then my grand-daughter came & her little boy & stopped a fortnight. Then we had a friend of Sidney's & her husband for 6 days & we have had ladies in for tea. A lot of time has passed away very quickly. Sidney said it was better to stop at home & have all the people here & not go traveling away at all, so I feel we have done a lot. The time has passed very quickly.

She was out last night to a W. ? party, but I had a lady in for the evening. This lady has a sister up the road & she has just come back from New Zealand. She went out to see her daughter & was to stop altogether but she only stayed a month & came home again, so i got all her news, then I wnet to my bed, but Sidney came home soon after. I will write to Viola a little later.

I hope your boy is getting on all right. Your girl too. Your husband is well also.

I have not heard again from the lady who asked about my brother, but I may hear again some time.

We hear from Viola twice a year. Always when she goes he holidays with her father. All my sisters are well too, but we are so far away from them they cannot come. We went to see them 2 years ago.

Hoping you are well. With kindest regards.

Yours sincerely,

Joey Short


13 Diana Rd.
1st Oct. 1947

Dear Emma,

I am writing you at once to condone with you, on your tragic circumstances. I had no idea you had to bear a lot. I hope that all will be well for a very long time now.

Your daughter had a very nice holiday away from you all. I daresay she is quite capable now to go away on her own.

I have heard from Viola. She always writes when she is away with her father for a holiday. She writes again at Xmas time.

Well I am writing you this time about my brother Jack. We have heard Mr. Hardyman is making up a book referring to Malagasy students he met in 1863. I am just wondering if the young fellow John who was over near Birmingham has anything.

I remember you said one time that your cousin had all the things relating to Jack. I am sending your address to Mrs. Hardyman whose letter I enclose which I hope you will let him have it as soon as possible.

Do not send this back to me, as I have taken a copy of it. I hope you know all about these things as well it will be very interesting bye & bye. My sisters have that photo of him with the Magalasy which they are sending to Mrs. Hardyman in Torquay.

I wonder if your friend has the pamphlet on Recollections of the Revolution which he published in Dundee. It would be delightful if he had & then send it on to Mrs. Hardyman. I am sending the letter on to you as I am sure you will do all you can to make it possible to have a book with all he needs in it. They are sending on the photo they have of him.

In the meantime I'll write to Mrs. Hardyman & say I have sent on the letter to you hoping you will do all you can for us.

I have been reading all your news again & it seems terrible so much to happen -- I will be looking forward to getting the photo of John's family & hope it will come soon.

I hope your own son will be alright now for a long time & that he will have joy in his automobile.

What a pity all your people work so far away from you. I hope too that your own husband will keep well now. I think you did alright not to go far away this summer & keep near home.

My sisters stayed home after they went to the marriage of a niece in Glascow. My sister from Mansfield went to see them & they took them in their car a lot. My second daughter & her girl went to Scotland this year. They had never been before. Her husband had to go to some meetings. They're hoping you can do all and want you too.

Yours affectionately,

J. H. Short



c/o Mrs. Hardyman
211 Newton Rd.
Torquay, Devon
16 September 1947

Mrs. R. M. Short
13 Diana Rd.

Dear Mrs. Short,

Your address has been given to me by your sisters in Dundee. I have been in touch with them as I have been trying to find some information about the late Rev. John DUFFUS, once a missonary of the London Missonary Society in Madagascar. (I may say that I am writing from Madagascar -- the above address is my home address).
The information for which I have been looking is as follows:
(a) When did Mr. Duffus die and where is he buried (in America)?
(b) Can you give me the address of your relatives in America?
Your sisters said you would probably be able to do this.
I possess a letter written by Mr. Duffus (from America) about 1902, addressed to an associate of his days in Madagascar -- Rev. W.E. Cousins. In this letter Mr. Duffus refers to the fact that he had in his possession an autograph album which had once belonged to a Malagasy named Rasoamakal in whose history I am interested, and I should like to find out if this album still exists.
I have also searched for a photo of Mr. Duffus -- your sisters tell me that they possess one.
The reason for this research and these requests is that I am interested in the history of Madagascar, and also wish to obtain the portrait as it is one of those missing from the collection of portraits of former LMS missionaries.
I enclose a stamp, and shall be very grateful if you could put me in touch with those of your American relatives who would be most likely to have inherited any papers etc that may have been in Mr. Duffus' possession relating to Madagascar and to his travels with the Malagasy ambassadors. I have also been looking for the small pamphlet on Recollections of the Revolution (i.e. the death of Radama the 2nd of Madagascar in 1863) which he published in Dundee in the 1890's. I have so far been unable to find a copy.

With my thanks in anticipation,
I am, Yours sincerely,

J. T. Hardyman

13 Diana Rd.
Carmarthenshire, Wales
October 14, 1956

Dear Viola,

I have had your letter & my daughter says I'd better write to you.

Well I'm sure its just being by yourself so much, it gets on your nerves.

It's a pity you had to go to the hospital but a good thing you are well again. Sidney, like you, has been in the hospital for 4 days, under observation & X-ray. She is home again & feeling better. My other daughter has been here for 3 weeks looking after both of us & we are enjoying the company. One of my grandchildren who lives in a caravan now came with her husband & two children for a week end to see us & then toured all over Wales visiting ruined castles & seaside resorts, they enjowed it very much.

We have had lots of visitors some just staying & others just calling. Two people we had not seen in 20 years, so it was once having a chat over old times.

Glad to hear you heard from Lillian & Emma. We hear from Emma occasionally.

We have had the film of Billy Graham showing at our cinema this week, but we did not go. I never go to pictures.

Hoping you enjoy St. Petersburg

Love from Aunt Joey (96 yrs old)

61 A Grange Court Drive
Bexhill on Sea
February 7th, 1958

Dear Emma,

It was very nice to get a letter from you which came exactly on my 98th birthday. The postman had a lot of things for me.

I had two telegrams, 17 cards & 8 presents, so I felt well remembered.

I like this place as it is warmer & less rainy than Wales.

We do not have many friends yet, as my son-in-law only retired
here last year, but we are nearer the grandchildren. I hear often from my sister Jeanie in Dundee.

Love from Auntie Joey

LETTER FROM JOHANNA DUFFUS SHORT TO VIOLA DUFFUS (daughter of George Duffus who was the son of John Duffus born in 1840)

61 Grange Court Drive
Bexhill, Sussex
April 8, '59

Dear Viola,

Just a few lines along with this photo. I want you to have it. Our neighbor is a very good photographer. As we had our niece from Edinburgh he thought he would like to take us all. So here it is.

Thanks for your letter & programme of the Welsh service.

Sorry to hear about your sister Lillian hope she is a lot better.

We have had very happy times lately. Two of my great grandchildren ages 15 & 13 came to visit us for 10 days. Then their mother & father came for the week-end & took them home.

One morning they took me to the front to see the sea. It was a lovely day. Mable's husband had the dinner all ready when we came back.

With love



April 1959

Dear Viola,

Mamma always likes to see a letter from Florida. It is nice of you to keep in touch.

We have had much better weather lately, in fact, it was like summer when the children were here. They rolled about the garden in their bare feet. We have a patch at the bottom where they can play cricket. We have the decorators doing our one top room & next week they are to do the hall. In between times, we are having my eldest son & family of two. they all like to see great granny & find her great fun.

It's amazing that she can stand & what a good digestion, she has & how she can do practically everything for herself. I am indeed lucky when you hear of people being bedridden.

That's all for the present,

Kind regards from

Mable Heather

P.S. Could you please let Emma see it.


61 A Grange Court Drive
June 24th, 1960

Dear Emma,

I thought you would like a letter from me just to tell you that I'm still alive. Your letter for my hundred birthday came that very morning. What a wonderful day I had.

Friends & Mable & neighbors called all day long & had cups of tea & bits of cake made by a local shop. It was very lovely indeed.

The house was full of flowers for 10 days afterward.

I am still keeping well and able to take my walk each day.

This week a gentlemen called with his car & took us to their lovely house, where we had tea, saw their coloured photos of their Scotch holiday.

We had some of the great grandchildren & their mothers & fathers & soon we will be having some more.

I have sight.

Love from

Aunty Joey


Dear Emma,

We were very sorry to hear of Viola's death. I didn't tell mother what she died of, because she would have grieved a lot. She was very fond of Viola through her letters, although they had never met. It seemed so sad to die like that when we thought she was enjoying a happy retirement.

I hope Lillian is better by now & that you are enjoying good health.

Mother keeps wonderfully cheerful & can dress herself although she is slowing down quite a bit.

We have a lovely garden simply full of colour at the moment, with all the roses out, so she sits in a little snug corner out of the draught, enjoys watching the birds. She still knits her squares for blankets. i wonder if you go away for a summer vacation or holiday as we call it.

Kind regards from

Mable Heather

LETTER FROM MABLE HEATHER (Johanna Duffus Short's daughter)

61 A Grange Court Drive
Bexhill, England
Feb. 1961

Dear Emma,

I have rewritten the family tree, so I hope this is what you want. We were interested to see all your family. What a nice lot of young folks. They are the ones to keep us young & lively.

We are so sorry to hear you haven't been well, but I hope by now you are feeling more like your old self.

Don't think all the family died young. Gramdpa Duffus died about age 86. Perhaps you are going to follow him. Illness always makes one look on the gloomy side. Here is Johanna still alive & cheary at 101 so never say die.

I was appalled to read of the terrible snow storms in New York. They must have been very trying to beat. I hope they are over for the season.

We are lucky in S. England & have really had a mild winter, if rainy, up to now.

Mother had an enjoyable birthday. We did not have any of our relatives as they are too far off to come & bring their young families just for the day.

Kind regards from

Mable Heather

Thanks also for the pretty card.

Family Tree

? = John Duffus = Janet Stewart
/ / / / / / / / John Duffus George Nellie Bessie Johanna Jessie Isa Tennie
d. at 21 m. m. m. m.
Geddes Gibson Short Gibson
/ / / / / /
Eva Norman Cissy Johnny Nellie Maggie
dead dead dead

/ / /
Nellie Molly Willy

/ / /
Sidney Mable Dorothy
dead m. Heather dead
/ / / /
Claire Donald Geoffrey Barbara
m. Rowell / / /
/ / / / / / /
/ / Frances Jon Simon Jane* Andrew Phil
Peggy* Michael
17 yrs. * youngest of the clan
now. two yrs old

LETTER FROM MABLE HEATHER (Johanna Duffus Short's daughter)

61 A Grange Court Dr.
Bexhill, Sussex, England
Dec. 1, '61

Dear Emma,

I thought you would like a photo some frineds took this September, so it is quite up to date.

The old gentlemen is my brother-in-law & the young girl is his daughter. You'll recognize Mamma & the others are myself & husband. It is taken outside, our lounge, where we sit out in the summer. The glass pattition keeps the wind off us nicely.

I'm pleased to say Mamma is still thriving & looks as though she will still be here for her 102nd birthday on February 4th. She isn't walking out now but I have a wheeled chair in which I take her a little way. We stand on a hill, so it's a bit hard pushing on the return journey. What she likes to do is to go & visit friends.

She is going out to tea on Saturday. People seem to live longer these days.

We have had a very full time this summer. As we can't get away, all the friends have to come to us. & as all my children have cars now we see them more often which we like very much. We are very interested to watch what your President is doing. What a task for one so young & his wife too.

We listen to Allistair Cooke talking from America about American affairs to the British. I wonder if he speaks on your radio too.

I expect all your young ones are looking forward to Xmas. They look a very jolly crowd from the photo you sent & I expect you have lots of fun when they are all together.

Mamma spends her time cutting up material for stuffing toys which a crippled girl went next door makes & sells. Mamma can also knit desclothes so all her friends get one.

We are following our Queen's visit to Africa in the newspapers & have enjoyed seeing Princess Margaret's new joy. David he is to be called.

Very many good witnesses for Xmas-tide.

Yours sincerely,

Mable Heather


51 A Grange Court Drive
Dec. 1962

Dear Emma,

Nearing xmas once again & we think of friends far away. I wonder how you all are. At this end Mamma is still going strong & hopes to see her 103rd birthday on Feb. 4th. She was very thrilled becasue on Dec. 2nd she was on our BBC programme entitled "What is old age?" She had to say about four sentences near the end. Some of our friends heard it, who didn't know about it. It gave them a nice surprise.

She keeps well & happy but doesn't go out in this cold weather. I nap her up well even by the fireside. We don't have full central heating like you do in the USA. My husband & I managed to get to my sons near London in November for a week.

We both needed a change. My eldest daughter, Claire, came & looked after Mamma. She has a daughter just started at B'ham University & a son in top form at shool, so he & the Father managed alright. Peggy is doing languages including Russian. I wouldn't like to tackle that, but I am doing a BBC course in German which I find quite interesting.

I wonder how you fared well with the floods some months back. I hope they were not in your district.

We, in England, are copying your high buildings. We were quite interested seeing some of them when in London.

We are looking forward to news of you. We always like to hear how the children are developing etc.

Best wishes for Xmas & the New Year from

Aunt Johanna & Mable Heather.
LETTER FOR MABLE HEATHER (Johanna Duffus Short's daughter)

61 A Grange Court Dr.
Bexhill, England
May 3, 1963

Dear Emma,

It was indeed kind of you to send us presents for easter. What a lovely soft shade the scarf & hanky, a beautiful fine linen - always useful.

I'm glad you're getting warmer weather after the terrible cold of just after Xmas. We are appreciating it too although it is more one day warm & the next colder. mamma has sat out in the sheltered corner several times already & enjoys it.

She has decided she musn't try to walk at all without my support so she just gets on the bed afternoon sleep till I come where she is safe. She certainly couldn't walk at all by herself.

We had a very nice Easter with our family just before another long week-end over Easter with the eldest granddaughter - Peggy Rowell - staying on till Friday. She ws on vacation from Birmingham University where she is studying languages. She is the clever one of the grandchildren. She is going to France for a month in July to stay with a French family. The students are encouraged to do this as aprt of theeducation. Both families have a car so we got out several times - Mamma too, which she enjoys as she doesn't get out often.

The Red+ ? have a good scheme for old people. They distribute 10 lbs. of lucious grapes given by a firm in South Africa at this time of year for people of 100 & over. So Mamma is looking forward to having hers soon. We give quite a lot away to our neighbors & friends as there are too many really for me. It is something nice the old folks look forward to. We are looking forward to a visit from a cousin of mine (Nellie Geddes from Edinburgh) at the end of this month. She wants to see Mamma once more after about 10 years.

With many thanks & our best regards from

Mable Heather

61 A Grange Court Drive
August 27, 1963

Dear Emma,

I have been reading your last letter in which you wondered if we got your parcel with a scarf for Mamma & a hankerchief for me. I think you will have had my thanks long since this, but I would like to say how much pleasure the scarf has given Mamma. She tells everyone that it has come from afar & has used it when visitors come with her black velvet coatee. It is such a lovely soft shade - just like the colour of her cheeks. She hasa a long string of many pink beads, which go with it well so she feels a swell.

She still takes a ppride in her appearance & puts in a curler at each side & one in front. People are very amused.

Friends called this morning & said we would like to come a run along the front (the show?) so she was very willing & off we went for an hour, as it was a fine summer morning. We are not having much of summer, but we have a weeks sunshine now & then.

All the families have been down this summer & then they had
their own holidays in Scotland, Devon, Cornwall & one family are as far from Italy -- a first adventure for far. We are not used to such long distances in our little Island, as you are. We've asked my eldest daughter to come for a week, so that my husband & I can get out for a day at a time.

Mamma keeps very fit & enjoys having visitors to tea. These, we have, when my husband is seeing cricket. The West Indians excelled themselves over here & everybody enjoyed seeing them win. Cricket is taken very seriously in England.

I remember the American soldiers playing baseball in Hyde Park duirng the war. They made a rattling good noisy game of it.

I was interested to hear of your relation, who is now a minister & married to a minister's daughter. That is a good partnership as they both understand the work of it.

I expect August is a holiday month for you in America. That is when your weather is terribly hot, isn't it?

Mamma joins me in sending her love

Yours truly

Mable Heather

LETTER FROM MABLE HEATHER (daughter of Johanna Duffus Short)

61 A Grange Ct. Drive
February 10, 1964

Dear Emma,

Mamma was pleased to get your card & to know you were thinking of her on her birthday.

She had a grand day with her 40 cards, 30 gifts & 30 visitors. Fortunatley the latter stayed for only 20 mins. each, or else I didn't know where we should have put them. We served coffee & birthday cake in the morning & tea & cake in the afternoon.

The last guest came at 6:45 when we were thinking of her bed. The Mayor & Mayoress came & as you see the press Photographer. The place is full of flowers & boxes of sweets. The latter will quite last till Easter. She enjoyed every minute of it, but has been pretty tired since.

She sleeps alot by the fire, as well as in bed during the day. The Dr. says she might slip away at any time but of course he said that a year ago. However we do see a big difference over these last 3 months.

Do hope you haven't had anymore blizzards. We in England are feeling very thankful for a normal winter. We've had keen winds a bit, but dry & free from snow, so far, except for 2 days. So glad you families are well.

We are looking forward to ? coming to see us now the year has turned again. We don't have them between Oct. & Mar.

I'm sure your husband is looking forward to his retirement. It is a very pleasant period. At any rate we find it so.

Do you & your husband have any hobbies? I've been trying to learn German, not for any particular reason. If anything to keep my mind working. My husband spends a lot of time in his garden & everyone says he makes a wonderful job of it. Its a good size so can get plenty of variety in it & can share the fruit & flowers all round.

All kind thoughts come with this photo

Yours sincerely



61 A Grange Ct. Drive
Bexhill on Sea
March 21st '64

Dear Emma,

Thank you for your letter of March 5th. It was very kind of you to send a present to Mamma, but unfortunately it hasn't arrived. I asked at our post office & they said it shouldn't take more than three weeks at the most. I'll let you know at once if it arrives later.

We shall be thinking of you on Easter morning. What a good idea for all the men to turn to & cook the breakfast for everybody. It must be quite a job too, as there will be a specially big congrega-tion.

The weather has turned a little warmer & the daffodils look as though they will be out of the buds soon. What a joy the spring flowers are.

Mamma hasn't been quite so well since her birthday - a bit slower in grasping what we say & sleeping more -- failing by inches. She hasn't wanted to play a game for a month, but today she asked me to play wwith her & enjoyed it.

They are longer cards than the usual, so she sees them in the daylight, but not in the electric. She may see the summer through. I've got a nurse to wash her in bed once a week, as it was getting too much for me.

My eldest daughter Calire came to help me for a week & also my daughter in law last week. They were both helpful. Mr granddaughter (Claire's) is coming for a few days before she goes to France to the University & then a teaching job, which will take her a year.
Then she goes back to her English University for a third year. She just sent us a card to say she's passed her exams in Russian. I shouldn't like to try that. It must be awful.

I look at all your grandchildren on the photo some times. I expect they are all getting tall.

We are expecting to see another of ours in long trowsers soon.

My cousins wife writes from Dundee to say that Aunt Jeanie seems to be in much the same condition as Mamma. Forgetful, shaky on the legs, but very happy in the home for old folks.

I think that's all our news for the present.

We hope you have a happy Easter. I suppose most people have some days holiday from work then People here have a week-end.

Love from us both


61 A Grange Ct. Drive
March 25, 1964

Dear Emma,

Am glad to say the lovely dressing jacket has now arrived. I expect you have had a letter from me by now to say we have't had it.

Mamma is charmed with it, although she doesn't write letters now, she said she would like write thank you to you.

It is especially welcome because others don't have long sleeves & that is what she likes.

Thank you very much

Aunt Joey


December 1964

Dear Emma,

I thought it better to send you a letter than a card, as you get more news that way.

You'll be surprised to hear that Mamma is still going strong. I think she will be here for Feb. 4th. She has one or two falls and cut her forehead onece, but she seems to heal up quickly, and doesn't get unduly upset. I suppose her nerves are duller now than ours. She is gradually "running down.", can't see details on pictures very well, can't interpret what you say very easily, but she still takes an interest in things, although is much quieter than she was -- just likes to sit & do nothing. Of course she sleeps half the time, in her chair. If she's happy, that's all that mattters.

My husband and I have been getting out once a week for an hour or two to see a play or something else, so that life hasn't been too dull. I'm fortunate in having a part time nurse living near.

How are all of you doing? I hope your husband retired last January. Has he some hobby that will keep him from being dull at home? My husband gardens a lot & reads mostly history, when he's sitting quietly in the evening. We don't have TV, but enjoy the music on the radio.

I rather enjoy your National Geographical magazine. A frind brings me up his copy. i was reading all about old Peru & the Inca settlement.

Your President seems a fine man. What a responsibility to be head of huge & various lot of states.

We shall be looking forward to a letter from you soon. Did I tell you that Mamma's sister Jeannie was 100 in June last?

Best Xmas wishes from

Joey & Mable

LETTER FROM MABLE HEATHER (Johanna Duffus Short's daughter)

61 A Grange Court Dr.
Bexhill on Sea
Jan. 12th, '65

Dear Emma,

You will be wondering when I am to give you any information about John Duffus, your grandfather. John Duffus, son of my grandfather, John Duffus of Dundee, born about 1826 or there about, are the only Duffus' who had male issue. Grandpa had a sea captain brother whom we called "Uncle Polly" because he kept a parrot (he was Mamma's uncle of course). He used to catch whales in the seas of Russia. I remember we had a whaleskin rug in the kitchen. He had only two daughters. There was another uncle who helped grandpa with his tailoring business in Dundee, but he only had one daughter who died.
I've been jogging Mamma's memories of the past which isn't easy now. I think I'm right in saying your grandfather was the last of the Duffuses. It was interesting to know someone is researching into it.
So sorry your husband hasn't been well last year. Hope this year will be better for him. I should think the police force in America have a very waring time. Ousr are finding it very trying & "the man in the street" is asked to help all he can, which I think we should.
It's nice your son has such lovely place, where you can go & spend your holidays. It's something to look forward to.
Mamma is sleeping more & more in the day time, but enjoys getting up & seeing friends when they come.
We are going to the theatre this week for our outting.

Kind wishes for the New Year,



4th April 1965

Dear Emma,

You will be surprised ti hear that Mamma passed away on the 25th Mch and was creamated at eastbourne after a service at our English church on 30th March.

My four children with one wife & husband, a nephew & his wife came so it was quite a crowd of us to be there. We were not sad, as she was wanting to go & lately her breathing became difficult. It turned out to be bronchitis & then pneumoniia, the last couple of days & she gradually went. Fortunately the nurse, who helped us, was able to came in for extra time the last 4 days, so I was bale to lie down for extra rest.

The doctors thought she was in very good condition. One saiid he was honored to have attended one so old. Everyone had a good word to say of her. About 20 friends came to the Church service. My eldest daughter, Claire, has stayed to help me spring clean the little bedroom.

Her son & his friend had been walking in France & they have dropped in here on the way back. They are university students. Claire is going home today & the boys tomorrow. It has tided over the sudden being only two of us.
We miss her a lot, but now will be able to get out together & plan a holiday on the Continent in late September.

Mamma still kept her 3 working books from school when they wrote "copperplate." I thought you might like one -- I will send it later.

Your letter came after Mamma died. I'm sorry you haven't been well, but hope you are better again.

Thank you for your enclosures. I expect you will enjoy your sunrise service. I hope the sun is there to welcome you. I shall think of you then. Shall look forward to your letters now & then.


Mable Heather

LETTER FROM MABLE HEATHER (Johanna Duffus Short's daughter)

61 A Grange Ct. Drive
May 4th 1965

Dear Emma,

This is the writing book I promised you.

It was written when she was 12. We don't write "Copperplats" today, do we? We had three of these at 12, 13 & 14 years. I'm sure Mamma would like you to have one.

I have a good deal more time to myself now & had three of the families down from Bexhill in the past 6 weeks & we have been up to Harrow. It's about 12 miles from London to my daughter Barbara. We stayed 5 days & also called on Donald in the west district Ruislip, where the American Air Force have their base. Unfortunately, the weather was wet & cold. Still walked about quite a bit. Saw our old home at Staunor's ?. Everywhere houses & factories are being built.

The end of May we are going up to Birmingham to stay with our 2nd son Geoffrey & will stay 10 days, as the cricket season is on. My husband is an enthusiastic watcher. I shall do other . . . . .

LETTER FROM MABLE HEATHER (Johanna Duffus Short's daughter)

61 A Grange Ct. Drive
Bexhill, Sussex, England
Nov. 29, 1965

Dear Emma,

I was very pleased to get you Xmas letter with its newspaper enclosures.

For a moment, I wondered if "Meg" was a relation of yours. We never call her anything, but Margaret & usually have Princess before it. It's interesting to see how othe countries do things.

What a wonderful recovery President Johnson must have made to be able to join the dancing so soon after his operation. Doctors are clever now-a-days. I'm so glad to know your husband came through his experience safely. I should think a holiday in Florida would do him a world of good. The knowledge that he is now retired takes a load off men's mind too I think. The comfort of knowing you needn't get up early or go out in all weather.

I think the police give a great deal of service to their country.

Well, here we are near Xmas. It makes spring seem near. What a wonder the changing seasons are. We should get so tired of the same temperature. I met someone from South Africa who said "Oh those long hot days are awful." They'd rather settle here

We may go up to London for Xmas day, we haven't settled yet. Sometimes the four families meet. The Birmingham, Cheltenham families going to the London ones. It's so nice traveling in Winter.

I've been to the Commonwealth Exhibition in London lately & also a musical show, so we are getting ablout freely now & enjoying it.

I expect all your young folks are looking forward to Xmas & its festivities.

I expect you've heard about these places on the Almanack. I thought a few notes would add interest.

Best Xmas greetings from,


LETTER FROM MABLE HEATHER in 1963 (Johanna Duffus Short's daughter)

61, H, Grange Court Dr.
Bexhill, Sussex, England

Dear Emma,

Mamma thanks you for your birthday wishes. She is still going strong and enjoying life. She must be tough to stand this cold weather. Of course, all she does is sit by the fire well wrapped upp & a rubber hot water bottle at her hands. It's really been terrific -- the cold. The warmest place was in bed with two bottles. I usually lie down for an hour in the afternoons as I'm 72. Still the thaw has come with slush, mirk, butthe first snow drop is up in our garden, so spring can't be long in coming now.

Mamma had a wonderful birthday with friends calling in on three days running. I made he a festive cake with 103 & Happy Birthday in silver & decorated it with oranges & lemon segments & silver balls. We had the Press & Photographer by 10:15 am & a telegram from the Mayor. We did not invite any of the family as we only have two bedrooms in use during the winter. We put plants & store apples in the room upstairs then.

I'll enclose the cutting. They have smoothed out the wrinkles.

You haven't had it too cold when you wrote, so I hope you have missed it altogether. I suppose you get hot in the summer. We seldom get up to 80 degrees. I hope you all had a Happy Xmas. You have quite a crowd living near, I think, so can get together. It makes a very jolly time then.

Shall be looking forward to hearing from you again about Easter.

We are hoping one of our families will come then to stay with us for the week end.

With all good wishes for 1963.

Yours sincerely,

Mable Heather

The Reddings
Olds, England
June 26, 1966

Dear Mrs. Donald,

I received a letter from my grandmother on the 22nd and she has told me all about you. I would be delighted to visit you when I am in New York. I arrive there on July 17th & return from there to U.K. on October 3rd.

I will have to find a job when I get there probably in the New York area, I am not sure quite what.

I a few days time I have to travel down to London to visit the U.S. embassy where they examine me and I hope eventually stamp my visa
While I am not working I plan to travel around quite a bit on the Greyhound buses for which I have a 19 day ticket.

I should imagine however I would find it difficult visiting the national parks in this way.

In a weeks ime the University term will have ended and I will be traveling from Hull in Yorkshire down south to Gloustershire where my parents live.

My sister Peggy is at the University of Birmingham which is about 45 miles to the North of Chellinham whereas Hull is nearly 200 miles away.

I hope you will be able to write to me before I leave.

Yours sincerely

Michael Rowell

LETTER FROM JESSIE S. WILKIE (Johanna Duffus Short's daughter to Cathy Trapp, the daughter of Emma Duffus Arnold)

38, Menglee Park Av.
22 July 1968

Dear Mr. & Mrs. Trapp,

We were so sorry to have missed you when you were in Glascow, as we were anxious to trace our relationships & to hear all the news of the families connection.

I was wondering if you had any connection with the Trapps in the "Sound of Music" (as it is an uncommon name). Of course the Trapps of Austria settled in America when they escaped from Hitler.

I have just been reading Maria Trapp's autobiography & found it delightful reading -- the film was charming.

I was ready to ask so many questions, had we met, about the Duffus Clan, as all I know my mother's half brother John Duffus went to America many moons ago. My mother kept up correspondence with him, I know, for years, but of course that is not today or yesterday.

I am 81 now myself & my husband is 84 (enclosed photos just taken at Loch Lomond in the Summertime.

I would be delighted is you would drop a line at your convenience & tell us about yourselves & relatives for the Duffus side.

Hoping as you say we might meet another time.

With best wishes,

Jessie S. Wilkie