A voyage to America
by Jonas Pierre FALLET
Handwritten account forming a notebook of 22 pages, deposited at the State Archives in Neuchâtel, copied in January 1996 by Georges FALLET in Neuchâtel (born 21.8.1945), parent but not descendant of the characters mentioned.
This notebook was given to the Archives by Mr Marius FALLET, but since it was contained in an envelope bearing the postal stamp of Berne with the date of 15 May 1953, it is probable that it is the former Director of the Swiss National Railways's commercial service who handed it over : Edouard Marius F. (born 25.10.1904) - son of Marius Edouard Fallet (17.12 1876 - 24. 7.1957).
Reproduced with the permission of the late M. Georges Fallet, Neuchâtel, genealogist of the FALLET family, from Dombresson, NE. This story is an important document of an old reality: the modest living conditions of those of our ancestors emigrating to the heavens they dreamed more lenient.
Jonas Pierre FALLET, (born Sunday 19 Oct 1796, baptized in Dombresson 29 Oct 1796; p 85;
Would have been in America in 1842 = AEN record of his brother Charles Henry (born 05 Feb 1790). 4th son as well as 6th of 10 children.
Father: Jean Henry FALLET (23 Apr 1766 - ca 1839), former Church elder; appointed Dombresson's avoyer on the 23rd. 5.1831 [MCE].
Mother: Henriette MONNIER (1767 - 1841)
Paternal Grandfather : David FALLET (baptized 13 Mar 1735, buried 25 Mar 1798), agronomist & church elder
Paternal Grandmother : Elisabeth Marguerite JEANROSSEL (739 - 1810), from Le Pâquier
Maternal Grandfather : Jean Henry MONNIER, Dombresson, former church elder.
Maternal Grandmother : Elisabeth FALLET (b 15 Nov 1722 - buried on the 31st of March 1806), first cousin in both maternal and paternal lines of David FALLET (1735 - 1798).
After publication of banns on 05 Nov 1826, marries in Neuchâtel on 02 Dec 1826 :
Father: Jean Frédrich SCHAUWECKER, from Reutlingen / Württemberg [48 ° 28'N - 09 ° 13'E, 35 km to S-S-E. from Stuttgart.
Mother: Anna Maria MUELLER.
Constant FALLET (born 25 Nov 1827, baptized in Neuchâtel Sunday 12, died in Saint-Louis / USA, 19 July 1834).
Links with Fallet
Jonah Pierre FALLET was a first cousin of Jacob Benjamin FALLET (24 Oct 1800 - 29 Nov 18 - husband of Cécile Aimée L'EPEE (22 Nov 1810 - 08 Mar 1882) and brother of Louis Theophile Francois FALLET (29 Jan 1799 -1875) - himself allied 06 May 1826 with Marie Philippine L'EPEE (+ 1872), sister of the above-named Cécile Aimée L'EPEE (1810 - 1882) and great-great-grandparents of Cousine Julie (or Juliette) Madeleine FALLET (born in Dombresson on 09 Mar 1909), the African missionary, through their daughter Cécile Aimée FALLET (23 Dec 1826 - 11 Jan 1894), while the son of the latter, the miller and farmer of Charriére in Dombresson: Aimé Diacon (+ 1916) married Julie MORTHIER (04 Dec 1849 - 27 Feb 1908), a descendant of David VAUTHIER, from Pâquier, allied in Dombresson on the 30 May 1750 with Anne Marguerite FALLET (born Dombresson 10 Mar 1726), a sister of the above-named Elisabeth FALLET (1722 - 1806).
Finally, Jacob Benjamin was the great-grandfather of the Neuchatel Genealogy Society Treasurer, Paul, Conrad FALLET (born 20 Apr 1920).
Links with Junod
Through his uncle David (brother of his father), born 20 Feb 1762, ally of Marie Catherine, née Sunier.
Their daughter Marie Rose (24 Oct 1789 - 26 Mar 1836) married 28 Jun 1818 in Ligniéres, Aimé Junod (13 Sep 1764 - 2 Dec 1862).
At the death of Marie Rose, Aimé married April 4, 1843 in Gléresse, BE Marguerite Julie, born Naine (2 Aug 1821 - 28 Aug 1849), who gave birth to Paul Aimé Junod (20 Feb 1846 - 18 Jul 1918), the latter having emigrated to Neuchatel, Kansas, USA in 1876 ... just a short distance from St Louis, Jonas Pierre FALLET's destination, which is mentioned here.
Description of the voyage of Jonas Pierre FALLET (born 19 Oct 1796) and his family who left Neuchâtel [47 ° 00 'N - 06 ° 55' E] Wednesday 05 March 1834 to go via Paris & Le Havre to New Orleans [30 ° OO'N - 90 ° 03'0], United States of America.
Having promised many of my friends and compatriots to let them know about my voyage and the remarks that I am in the case of doing, I found it convenient and even advantageous for them to trace it only once and to ask Mr. MOSSET to publish what I could collect, in order to educate and disillusion the misinformed of my compatriots. I am assured in advance that none of my acquaintances will wait for me except what they know how to do; it is to say that I will tell them the truth and pure truth, as I promised.
The way which seemed to me to be the most economical to travel for any family while being of a good ordinary, it is the way of the Posts. If one wishes to lodge on the road, there are still means of economy, as for food, but for that, one must not rely on the confidence of the Hosts; one must ask the price of all things, before satisfying one's appetite or rest, or taking a place in a cart or diligence. You will get enough of everything everywhere but never leave without having previously set the price, and do not ask anything either: I saw the case, where being thirsty was offered you a glass of sweet water. I accept a glass, go to the first fountain, fill it with water and put a piece of sugar, to be paid 6 modest centimes for this civility. It is therefore better to provide before the journey of the necessary; we are not embarrassed to diligently pay 50 to 60 pounds (luggage) per person, moreover without paying.
As for objects in transit, I will come back to it later. Once in Paris [48 ° 50 'N - 02 ° 20' E], if you need or are interested by something, you have to have several days in front of you, which you will not regret. You take a room in a hotel where you have agreed on the price per day, you eat at will, you are driven by a commissionaire, and if you go a little further, you take a cab or omnibus; they are not expensive. I have found that in the shops of Paris everything is, so to speak, fixed price, and there can be some cheap things, depending on what you need. You find resellers all sorts of things much below their value; you can also see every day the Natural History Cabinet, the Garden of Plants, Arts & Crafts.
It is very nice to have someone knowledgeable that can accompany you; we must not give our full attention to the beautiful things we see there and do not forget that we are surrounded by rogues, who talk to you about all kinds of things, to scam you, what the stranger is exposed more than any other. Having done my business in Paris, we leave for Le Havre [49 ° 29 'N - 00 ° 07' E]. In addition to the postal route, you still have that of the Seine which you must enjoy. It would be good, when arriving at Le Havre, to have some recommendations or addresses so as not to have any delay as to the boat, besides that it can still be very useful to do one's business, because here, as in Paris, the stranger is constantly exposed to being deceived or cheated.
It was Friday, March 14 [9 days before Palm Sunday] that we arrived in Le Havre. Arrived in Le Havre, it is a question of seeing if there are suitable ships in charge, and if they are good and sure in all respects, it is here that the people to whom one is recommended and who know this who can be very useful to you. The Masters of Ships are all very interested, there are few or almost no people who are trustworthy: all swarming with commissionaires who want your property (meaning your money) who want to drive you where we bought provisions for the journey, follow them, but do only examine, and you must have been careful to agree with them for the time it was necessary that they employ to drive you because otherwise they will always trick you some under more than you were agreed upon.
Be sure to have with you commodities that do not need to be added, and that serve you in the cases that you will see later. Do not be afraid to take with you objects from Switzerland, if they are not prohibited, because they are not more expensive, they are better and in terms of quality and especially because they come from his country. We find in Le Havre all that we want, but just as dear, there are no dried fruits or dried beans, so do not neglect to take some with you. If you have kitchen utensils you care about, they do not cost you enough to leave them behind.
All the objects carried with me would have cost me much more in Le Havre. It is here again that provision is made for the utensils necessary for the crossing, either to enclose the combustible goods, or for cooking; care must be taken to procure copper or tinplate pots which contain enough and which can easily be subjected to fire from the apparatus. Spirits liquids, such as wines, spirits, as well as cheese and sugar in good quantity, should not be neglected, and this to take advantage of the rights that are refunded on export: Swiss cheese is preferable to that of Holland; I am talking here about the provisions that can be taken by the passengers who are at the steerage, it costs you for the passage 100 to 150 francs without any supply, according to the number of passengers. You receive nothing from the Captain but wood and water, of which it would be good to have some of them by yourself, because, being rationed, we receive but very little. You also need beds that you find to buy.
Theye sell hay mattresses, various blankets, if you have some by yourself, it is better to keep them than to sell them and have to buy them back. The steerage is lined around two rows of beds, one above the other; in the beds below, you have to sleep 4 people and on top 3 people. There are also barrels, bottles, trunks, baskets and bags for your supplies during the crossing. You must not forget eggs, and generally anything that could make you happy. You need screws, strubs, nails, a cord, a hammer, a small ax, pincers, a nail drill, besides the services needed for the table and the kitchen.
Once everything is prepared, you carry your belongings to the ship and you will not be long in it. You take care of your places at first because they are not all equally good, I mean your huts: as for the beds which are all numbered, there are many choices: I recognized the usefulness of what I observed. So I made my people sleep and also installed myself.
The second day that I go to sleep with my people, I find a stranger who was lying near my effects, no doubt to rob us during the night: I take him by the collar and lead him out of the vessel. I did not know how to do anything but be on my guard. Our neighbors were two Swiss families from the Canton of Berne, who, like us, were also on their guard.
Two nights later, about one o'clock in the evening, our neighbor, mother of eight children, realizes that someone is searching in her effects around her bed. She exclaims: come, I have a thief: I, quickly run, jump, seize him by the neck by squeezing it hard. He was naked, having only a coat on him. The noise he had caused had picked up 7 to 8 people, and I tried to take him to the bridge to make him known to the guard. But having no light, and the thief being fat and nervous, I was much surprised when I heard him call his comrades to his assistance.
I was in a bad position. We could know who he was by the names they uttered: he was from the ship, and therefore we had to let go. So here we are in a cave of thieves. In the struggle I had been wounded only on one foot, but my death was sworn by these Germans. The next day we think to go to the Swiss consul, he was not yet up and we had to leave at 7 or 8 o'clock. what to do? We found the Captain who reassured us a little and it was all. After that we left April 05 [Saturday after Easter].
It should be noted that passengers who want to be in a room do not need all these precautions. They pay about 700 francs from France for the trip and are very well looked after by the Captain. The tide had delayed us by 3 days and we were still struggling to get out, yet here we are on the way.
Once the visit was made by the police, as usual to find out if there was no one hidden in the ship, the companions left us: they were not yet out of Le Havre that we already had sick on board, though the sea and the wind were favorable. There was no fire that day. We begin to lose sight of Le Havre and the coast, keep good wind but always more people fall sick. The first eight days there was almost no fire except for tea. We all agree that you should not go to America for a pleasure trip.
Thanks to God we keep a good wind to pass the Channel. Once on the high seas our evils are not over: the winds change, waves like mountains make us roll all off our boxes and our effects in general, we had to find cords, screws and nails, which by happy precaution l was equipped, for what was not securely fastened might roll over to our beds, as those who had not made an protective wall rolled themselves out of bed. All these trials do not cure the sick: the one who would have had reproaches to make or to receive, the moment was favorable.
Suddenly we hear the cries of the captain and sailors eager to direct their sail on the other side; the blows begin against the ship, suddenly a wave covers it from all sides where there were openings, the evil increases in women, it seemed that it was impossible to resist, complications are mingled there, it is necessary that the captain be a doctor, surgeon and midwife, one can imagine how he was doing on the bridge. The wind has become less strong, a wave comes and soaks everyone it meets; those who are not wet laugh at each other while waiting for their turn to come. Finally, if sicknesses begin to decline, on the other hand, the wind becomes more and more the opposite.
On Sunday, the 20th of April, in the morning, what was my surprise when I saw land, houses and mountains of the height of our Chaumont hill : many French said they had not seen such mountains: it was the Acores Islands [ 38 ° 44'N - 29 ° 00'0]. We continued our navigation, always beaten by the contrary winds, and being very uncomfortable; similar weather was not enough to please the hearts of certain persons still less resolute than myself. Our crew was English, having for Captain Mr SCHILD, of whom I had occasion to know the rigor, even the brutality towards the men of his crew. One day some passengers, without thinking badly, gave a little to drink to two sailors who, as we know, do not spit at the glass. They were, unfortunately, noticed by the captain who undertook them in manners which were quite unknown to me. After having thrown them down, he bound them to the ship, one of them coming to untied himself, in his intoxication wanted to hide himself, but he was discovered and dragged on the ground from one end of the ship to the other, after which he received a dozen strokes of rope which he had to count himself, and was finally hanged by the arms at the highest height. possible.
I had not yet seen myself as ill as at that moment. So I expressed my great surprise at the fact that the French, who were lodged in our room with us, answered me for all consolation that the sailors were not treated otherwise, although they only dreamed of freedom. The ship was not well prepared for the transport of the passengers; there were two bad kitchens and a still poorer place of comfort, which had a bucket no one wished to empty.
Nobody of the crew understood nor French nor German: a Swiss having satisfied a need of the nature was warned by the master of the Crew which made him understand to empty the bucket. Refusing to do so, he was threatened even with his hands full in the face, a new refusal, a new instance of the Master, followed by a plaster in his face. This is how it happens sometimes that one is exposed to grossness and ill-treatment of the crew and the master himself. We have the same headwind until May 06 [Tuesday before Ascension], when we were informed that we were near the Tropics and that we would be baptized after crossing the line. Many amateurs have already bathed at sea, because it is so hot here that we can hardly bear clothes and many of us lie on the deck to cool. Here the duvets are too much, while across the Channel two were not too much. some young people were moored for having the curiosity to want to mount the ropes.
We have already made several attempts to repair parts, although there is nothing on the ship to facilitate repairs; I found in this a great deal of imprudence. Wednesday, May 07, day of the line, we wanted to baptize the passengers since we had spent the tropics, but the manners of the sailors are not suitable for everyone. He introduced himself to that of Neptune, the Lord of the Seas, who had a red body with blood, and carried a trident, on the top of which laid a fish. He had a beard a foot long; another accompanied the god, carrying a bucket which contained fat with a big brush, he smeared all those who did not want to pay the custom.
Being bound on something, he held in his hands a large iron square, with which he made a beard, it ends with a little trouble, and the baptism was finished. I will observe that to avoid the fatal baptism, we must not neglect a few cents to the sailors. The weather having become more favorable, we continued our journey calmly, and we saw nothing remarkable in these parts except flying fish. They are not big, the noise of the ship makes them come out of the water: they fly about a shot and then enter the water. If there is a change of weather, we see marcoins coming out of the water up to 3 feet high: they weigh about 20 to 30 pounds and follow the ship in troops, but a little far.
We are so hot that in the twenties we are like in a steam bath, we often take baths, putting ourselves outside the building, and by means of the pumps, get the water on the head, which is very nice, because the water is so hot that you almost do not feel it falling on your head. It is very salty, forcing us to shut mouth and eyes.
We have arrived at St. Domingo [18 ° 28'N-69 ° 54'0], May 15 [Friday before Pentecost], we had favorable wind since leaving the Azores. We were warned that we could see some sharks. On the morning of the 17th, we were surprised to see, during the afternoon, more than 200 blowers, some of which weighed up to 18 quintals, and about 12 to 15 feet long. Having left St. Domingue on the left, we passed to the right of Cuba. The night of 17 to 18 we had a very strong and dangerous storm, fortunately with good wind. For despite the damage our sails and ropes had suffered, we were still making 14 miles an hour. There were lightnings in this storm, as I have never seen anything like it before, and in spite of that we only heard thunder twice, and only slightly. We become very impatient when we think about how much time we had to come to this point.
We have now arrived at Cape St. Anthony [about 22 ° N - 85 ° 0] at the entrance to the Gulf of Mexico: the wind is quite low, hot and rainy every night and sometimes even the day. We are happy to have rainwater for our special needs as we always have the same water rations. Tuesday the 25th in the morning we had a great calm, and a proportional heat, the sailors bathed and at the same moment I hear screaming: your Auguste is drowning (my worker). Immediately two sailors jump to the sea to save him, and happily come to the end. He had wanted to descend by a rope and the rope coming to break, he fell.
He told me that he wanted to bathe himself also in the sea, whereupon I reproached him for his imprudence. A few moments later, we saw many sharks whose ferocity we know, we prepared for the fishing, we harpooned, we missed some beautiful fish named Dolphins, and we wounded a shark three times, which despite him continuing to follow the ship, removed a few primers and ended up being crooked. Three strong men pulled him out of the water by the address of one of the sailors who passed him a noose behind the first fins.
This animal seemed to wish to sink the ship by the blows of the tail with which it struck; Once on the ship, the first blow of his tail, he overthrew one of the strongest men on the crew. He was dragged thus to the middle of the ship, where, after having slipped a pallet into his mouth to be preserved, it was finally killed by bleeding as done for the pigs. The connoisseurs say that he was only eighteen months old, which is recognized by their teeth, in that each year he grows one row; he could weigh a quintal and was five feet long; its mouth is so large that one could put the largest head of man without difficulty, the meat is good especially near the tail, the rest is too tough.
We continued our route by a favorable calm and an excessive heat until the 29th and the 30th of May in the morning we perceived from the murky waters that we arrived at the mouth of the Mississippi. Large pieces of wood were swimming on the water; we had a very bad weather, we could not see anything far away. We were accompanied by an English ship. It was possible after much research to distinguish a pyramid which is the point of recognition. Then the Captain fired three shots from the barrel, and two hours afterwards we saw a well-veiled chalk-pipe coming to recognize us in its waves; it returned after having seen the flag and 2.5 hours later we were surprised by a small flyer that was under us among large woods that floated, we had trouble to stop the ship and the boat was able to reach a rope that had already been thrown to him several times: he was a pilot taking us to the mouth of the Mississippi, as is the rule. He tells us there was a lot of cholera in New Orleans.
This bad news was not very reassuring for us, who had already had so much trouble on the night of the 30th. We arrived at the mouth of the Mississippi at last, and at 2 o'clock there was a steamboat waiting for us. It was dark, and neither the Captain nor the pilot wanted us to leave before the moonlight, which was soon to be seen. So here we are en route on the steamboat; the first thing we saw from America was the signals from the edges: these signals are towers at the top of which is a glass turret and in this turret a reflector lamp which turns by means of a machine: this is established so that we do not make mistakes.
Once the day came, we discovered some American houses that are far from responding to the idea that we have of ours. Going up the river we perceived an almost innumerable quantity of crocodiles, of all sizes, to which we passengers hastened to hunt. The first enemies we met in America were the Mosquitos who tormented us and knew the blood of all new arrivals; they are so awkward that we have no place on the body that does not itch, so we must continually rub, which immediately causes blisters throughout the body.
It was in this state that I thought to myself: how can the Neuchâtelois and the Europeans still ignore so many inconveniences ? Here we find some quite god houses ; there are cut and caged woods in the middle of which a hole has been preserved to enter, forming the greater part of the huts which one sees there. We have also seen some of the already partly cleared countryside, in the middle of which there is usually a brick or wooden house, and on the side a garden which contains ... [missing word at the bottom of page 15] to house every family of slaves owned by the proprietor; we see some who possess from 12 to 15 of these barracks, the cattle have a cover as stables; we see many and especially horses graze on the banks of the river so the American does not walk on foot. We are not yet at the end of our delays, Saturday, May 31 at night the pilot of the steam boat that towed us had to help out 2 small ships which forced him to leave us on the sands where we spent a very sad night, Overwhelmed with fatigue and mosquito bites, we were there for 20 hours. At last we had the help of a steamboat which, after great efforts, freed us from the sands in which we were sunk.
We arrived at New Orleans [30 ° oo'N - 90 ° 03'0] on Monday 02 June at 8 o'clock, happy and sad, the disease reigning quite strongly, the heat was almost unbearable, three quarters inhabitants were absent, for without these three things there would be much to gain for everybody. We informed ourselves for the best of what we had to do. Dr. FORMINTO who had made the crossing and who had lived in New Orleans where he had won a fortune and who along the trip had hired me to stay was of the opinion that we leave as soon as possible and as I found none of those to whom I was addressed, I resolved to go out directly to St. Louis [38 ° 40'N - 90 ° 15'0]. In New Orleans money is scarcely esteemed; the smallest coin is worth six and a half cents; our great baggage is causing us delay.
We left on the morning of Sunday, June 8th, after having buried a little girl of one of our passengers who had been ill a day before; we were in a pitiful state The second day there was a man dead, we buried him in the woods; on the third day a woman, and the same was buried.
The woods of the river "are almost deserted" [highlighted] were all along the journey, except where there are dwellings made of wood crossed and covered in the same way: they are loggers who sell the wood for the vapor ships, they have a lot of pretty nice cattle that feed on summer and winter in the woods. The milk that can hardly be had costs 6.5 under the quart of a pot; they have beautiful pigs grazing among the horned animals and go swimming in the river. We sow maize, we also see some cotton plantations and some other grains.
The inhabitants are very lazy: if they have to eat it is enough for them; the whites who are the masters go on horseback and keep their blacks or their slaves with a rifle or a whip on the shoulder, the blacks are more human than the masters they are working at all the works, there are some cities or beginnings of cities, but there is none which approaches only "Hauterive" for example. It seems to me that in a few centuries it will be better to be on the banks of the Mississippi; ... Natchez, there was a lot of work, and I think this place is better, but it's still too hot for us. We arrive in Saint Louis on Monday 16th June at 8 o'clock in the evening. We lost 5 passengers on the river and we still have a lot of sick people.
What was my surprise when we learned that cholera had also erupted in these areas. All the boats that arrive have the same fate as us, that is to say that they have lost so much of us; there are even some who throw themselves into the river of despair. There are thousands of these unfortunate people in this country: we have hitherto been the happiest, because among these poor emigrants, some plan to return, the others, on what they must do; others, finally, say: let us burn the dwellings of those beggars who have led us here by their writings, to misfortune. We must not believe that we must seek better in other countries: people come here from all parts of America and attest that there is nothing better to do elsewhere.
The trade suffers a lot considering a change in the banks. We did not even think to find accommodation in St. Louis: thanks to some good Swiss who did what they can, we rented a small house that costs us 14 Dollars per month: we have to pay water 12 Dollars per year (a dollar is worth 38 batz of Neuchâtel). We take with us what we can from our country. I am deceived in all my waiting, here there is nothing more. There is no way that I can follow my plan which was to place myself to be quiet and happy, after the pains I have already given myself.
Having seen things, I hasten to go on a trip to Missouri: there are immense grounds, little cultivated, all the houses are more or less well done. St. Charles [38 ° 46'N - 90 ° 30'0] is a place of about 100 houses and about 1/3 of which are deserted and in ruins, despite that they are very expensive. In the countryside there is land at all costs depending on the localities. I would not hesitate to fix myself to it, if it were not a pity to sacrifice my state and my present position, which I do not allow myself. In St. Louis, I am encouraged to stay there but I can not see the next day, our strength and courage almost exhausted.
On the morning of Friday, June 27, Mr. RIVE of Geneva [probably belongs to Italy, joined to the Commune of Geneva in 1874] who had made the crossing with us and who had arrived here the day before, comes to inform me that Mme REINHEIMER [Family of German origin, received at the Bourgeoisie of Geneva in 1876] had arrived with him, that she had lost her husband by going up the river; that he had five children left, some of whom are sick; he told me that he died for lack of care. That was still a very bad blow for me. It is said everywhere that St. Louis is a healthy place: but I think that the climate of St. Louis and that of all America is too dangerous: a moment it is so hot that we can hardly stay there and soon after that comes a cold that makes you shudder. And here is always a chance to run, great illness or death, especially among us Europeans who are not acclimatized. People from the world keep arriving, on whom death causes great ravages. These last days a family of Germany arrived who had a son here who urged them to join him; they came in very good health, and four days later there were seven of them dead and buried. It is said that it is only three years that diseases are so common here.
I attribute the cause to the cholera which is ravaging the country; and the little experience of doctors: everyone wants to do one in his own way, a druggist is at the same time a grocer, an iron trader, a pharmacist and a doctor if he chooses to; if he has studied for three months he has a good reputation: we do not count those he kills but those who come back. forced to fix myself here, I rented a terrain to live there, a wooden house that will cost me about 800 dollars, I hasten to run my business. Wednesday, July 9 we were all pretty well, the day was very hot, when Constant who made our happiness since the 27 September 1827, day of his birth [baptized in Neuchâtel on Wednesday 12 Dec 1827], had fun with the Street children, black or white, French, and others, for all were equal to him, received a chill during the night when he discovered himself, and on the morning of the 10th he was suffering from a great illness. Hailed by one of the most skilful doctors of St. Louis, after 9 days of suffering, and despite our repeated care night and day, he died under our lips and watered from our tears. Nothing can return him to us. God wanted this; nothing can comfort except that he is probably more fortunate than us and that what I could have procured to him. He triumphed, from the evils and the fatigues of the human life, so we must not cry anymore because we still have the hope of going to join him soon in a better world.
You will be bored of the sad picture that I offer you, but remember that I promised you everything and nothing but the truth.
As for the business that can be done here, if it were not exposed, I would say that it is easier to earn a living here than in Europe, particularly the laborers who have some funds left. They can buy cheaply and have animals at their discretion: in a word, all those who have been here for many years are good and do not wish to return to their homeland. Although there are a thousand different privations and a climate difficult to bear here, the trade is quite flourishing. The trades are good, once placed and known, the workers are well paid; the servants the same; but there is no question of exposing oneself to coming here without money, if one does not want to be exposed to the greatest misery.
For my part, if I had been able to recover my expenses, I would have brought you the story of my journey. The country is free for whites, but I have already shivered from these freedoms. If you have an enemy and you want him to wear a bellows, he has a dagger on him; he kills you, there is nothing for him. However, there are established laws, which are fairly well followed: there have been three murders since I was in St. Louis. The city is of a size similar to ours cities. There are all kinds of houses and different nationalities ..., but it would be of great interest to us if we knew English. There is no good speculation to be made because of this inconvenience: nothing is better here than anywhere else to make money to make the necessary provisions for ones travels since one can not have everywhere or at the same price the necessary commodities.
I think I can finish my story by telling you that I hope you will not blame me for the little interest you will find in it: I did not promise you to write beautiful things or beautiful adventures, but I repeat the truth and the whole truth. I hope that you will give me the attention and at the same time the indulgences that my sorrows deserve and that there will be some who will enjoy, otherwise my sorrows would be useless and it would be better to be you.
Signed Jonas Pre FALLET.