Download Full Text (240 KB)
A letter of C. M. van Malsen to her parents in the Netherlands reporting on the trip to America made by her brother, Cornelis, and herself. Their ship left port on May 4. She does not say on what date they arrived in New York but it took 20 days to get from New York to Holland, Michigan. "We are now at our destination, a colony which numbers about a thousand people. You can imagine that we endure many hardships in a wild forest. Many are living in log houses but many still find themselves in huts made of foliage. Forty of us, large and small, are living together." p. 46. "Rev. Van Raalte and his wife prefer to have me live with my brother here, for the minister would like to have Cornelis remain here; we are on very good terms with the pastor and his wife. A structure is to be erected here which is to serve, at first as a church and school." p. 47.
Holland, Ottawa County, Michigan
Reprinted from "America" Letters From Holland, edited by John Yzenbaard, which appeared in Michigan History, a publication of the Historical Society of Michigan, Vol. 32 No. 1, March 1948. hsmichigan.org
This digitized material is intended for personal research/study only. The original documents may not be reproduced for commercial use in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, without permission in writing from Michigan History.
van Malsen, C. M., "Letter from C. M. van Malsen to Her Parents" (1847). Van Raalte Papers: 1840-1849. 137.