Family History

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To
James Dunmore Esq.,
No 50 Lothbury
London

Gibraltar 10th Febry 1812

Dear Sir,

By the ??? Frigate I wrote to you on the 1st Inst expressing the concern I felt for Mr Galbraith, whose habit and state of health was then very far from good. The fears I then entertained have unfortunately proved but too well grounded, for though he was in town on the day following and had written to his son in good spirits, feeling himself better than he had been from his first arrival, he was taken ill on his way to the South, and Dr Fraser who was immediately sent for lost no time in acquainting me of his dangerous situation.

I accompanied Dr Fraser on his second visit in the evening, and I found him, as had been represented, in a very bad way indeed. The water in the stomach which appears to have been of some standing, and which had been the chief cause of his illness had got into his chest and left but little hope of his recovery.

I went out again on the morning after and found that he had passed a very bad night and the Doctors report was very unfavourable. I again saw him at 3 o'clock and while with him he experienced so severe an attack that I instantly, on getting him recovered from a state of insensibility, rode in for Fraser who returned with me, and who was then fully convinced he had but a few hours to live.

We left him at 5 o'clock with an intention of returning early in the evening, but ere we had finished dinner a message was sent to say he was no more. Poor man, his thoughts seemed to rest on his family and he expressed a hope that Mr Gray would not be forgetful of them. On his own matters no communication was made, but as it respected some packages of shirts in which delicacy he said had prevented his mentioning to me before, and which he had given to one of the young Gentlemen in the Counting House to sell for him, the proceeds of these articles he directed me to recover, and to remit to his son, which shall accordingly be done, and it is only for me to request that you will be so good as to communicate to his family the loss they have sustained in that way which your own feeling will but point out.

As a satisfaction to them it may be mentioned that the humane and kind attention of Dr Fraser , whose ability stand high, was beyond any thing I ever saw and which Mr Galbraith himself was fully sensible of. Permission was also procured for his interrment in the burying ground within the walls of the town at Southport, and that every respect was paid in the last offices.

(missing words) the most respectable of the civil residents humbly?? (missing words) take an early opportunity of forwarding (unreadable) found at the time of his decease, and which ??? ??? my own ?? ?? on the same night carefully sealed up.

On this melancholy subject I have nothing further to add but sympathise most sincerely with his family whose distress must be so great, believe me.

??? Ever sincerely yours

D. Johnston


Kind acknowledgments to Kay Clarke for providing me with this letter.

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