Letter from T.H. Barker to his wife Mary, 17 December 1903

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Title: Letter from T.H. Barker to his wife Mary, 17 December 1903
Parent item: Collection of letters from T.H. Barker to his wife Mary (sort key: 6)
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Authors: Thomas Henry Barker
Format and extent: 4 pages on 1 (folded) leaf
License: Public Domain Mark This work is free of known copyright restrictions.
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7. Malaya Demetroska[?] 
17th Decr. 1903

My dearest Mary,

I am unfortunately at Moscow still & the above address is Mr Cooke's, British Consl Agent, where I am supping prior to leaving by 9.30pm on Cours[?]  Train for St Petersburg. Last night when driving to the Nicholai Station, I lost my valise, containing dress suit, opera glass & all my little curiosities & ?curios gathered up since I left Montdon. I ordered at the hotel 2 droskys for self & baggage, but the baggage man stowed the whole in one droshky & covered some of the things with the apron. On reaching the station the roads being very rough & without snow, the jolting had caused the valise to slip out. I was exasperated, & thinking for the moment that the valise had been left at Hotel, I ordered the man to drive back & missed the train. It was all owing to the carelessness of the hotel man, who should have strapped the valise in. Whether I shall ever get it again is an unsolved problem, but the British Consul & others are writing the Chief of Police & if it is returned to any of the police stations (it bore my name Thos H Barker) a proportion of its value will have to be given as a reward, & after the legal ceremonies have been fulfilled, it will be forwarded to me. In the meantime I must go on, even without a collar, to St Petersburg, & leave the matter in the hands of the Consul, a Mr Cooke. I am more grieved at the loss of the curios than of the clothes, altho' that is a heavy loss. I had fotunately my new frock coat & vest on, but my best trousers were with the suit, some shirts & a number of other things. You may imagine how it has upset me & the Cooke's, brother and sister, also.

I do not suppose I shall ever see it again, as there are said to be more dishonest than honest Russians, notwithstanding they are so religious. It is most unfortunate after such careful & successful progress & for the time has destroyed all pleasure. I was anticipating how much you would all be interested in the curios & knicknacks. I had about 160 ? & the portraits of Broker?Drobar? & the Director. I had put more things in the valise as I had carefully packed it for Petersburg & the home journey. The man slipped the things in while I was speaking to the hall porter otherwise I should have seen the valise was not secure, & the apron hid the deficiency.

I have not time for more. Thank God I am well & must not cry over spilt milk. I have had fair wear out of the dress suit, but it would have been good for a year or two.

Trusting this will find you all well, & that you will see me shortly after you receive this. I am
Your ever affect. Husband

Mrs Barker
36 Judges Drive Newsham Park

PS Cooke has written in Russ to Omsk, asking them to return letters to England. I hope to leave P'burg on Saturday.