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[[1]] No I. (II authors own)
Nunklow
July 11/ [18]50
My dear father
Here Tom & I have arrived at our furthest north from Churra [Cherrapunji], all beyond this being very unhealthy, it is very tantalizing to be stuck up here literally within one days hard ride of Jenkins, whose dwelling one can almost see at Gowahatti, but the intervening Terai is deadly at this season. I have written to ask if he can send me up an Assam native of tolerable cunning who will get me the Palms & Bamboos from the Terai. I have already 13 sp. of Bamboo from Churra & 10 from Sikkim[.] I think those of the two countries wholly different they never flower unfortunately, & I am determined with Tom's help & by getting gigantic specimens to describe them by habit leaf &c

[[2]] Of Plantains there are 2 kinds known wild both quite diff[erent] from Sikkim. I have sent the seeds of one to Falconer for you, also of Euryale ferox (from Dacca [Dakha]) & two Rubi[aceae] -- the latter ought to be grown in a cool damp frame. Of palms we found a new (to us) Phoenix yesterday -- only one plant not in fl[ower]. or fr[ui]t quite diff[eren]t from the Sikkim one.


We marched from Churra on the 28th June, & stopped at the following places all mentioned in Griffith & on Tassins T a s s i n 's map of E. Bengal, {which I have already advised you getting. (Try Smith & Elder or Parbury Allan)} Kala Panee, Moflong, Syong, Myrung, Nunklow. The elevation varies from 4 -- 6000 ft & this (Nunklow) is 5000 on the verge of the descent to Assam. The view is splendid, of the low grassy Khassya Mts behind sprinkled

[[3]] with Pines, & the Terai, plains of Assam[,] Burhampoota & Himalayah (when visible) in front. How I long to be able to get down & gather Dischidia Rafflesii[sic], Henslowia & Cardiopteris, but it would be very unwise to do so.


Of new plants we have lots especially terrestrial Orchideae now coming into flower. Of Epiph[ytes]. we have few & poor the spring flowers are long past, the autumn to come yet. Thus you see there are not so many mid summer ones as in Sikkim. According to our best determination by Lindley most are quite new, some even genera. I draw when I can get time & bottle all flowers.
Amongst other fine things we have Taxus quite like the Himal: both Wallich's Podocarpi, a new Sphaerostemma (yesterday) -- A new Helwingia! 14 Oaks & Chestnuts, two
[[4]] true Loranthi one with a Viscum growing on it! Lilium giganteum. A new genus as I have 3 congeners from Sikkim like Tofieldia same genus Ilicum[sic] two Primula not in flower[,] a splendid new Paris two Anisadenias, Burmannia 6 or 7 Sauraujas, lots of splendid ferns.

Griffiths nondescript Hamamel we call Murchisonia at present *1


Really I am beginning to tremble about the money part of the affair. Thomson you know has been refused 6d in any shape. & we keep 14 men constantly drying & collecting. At Churra we had 1000 species in paper at once, i.e. 27 different bundles of the largest brown paper all under pressure at once, the specimens laid in as we do at home. These were changed almost every day & the specimens are beautiful. The wages of these people will be £10 a month & yet we give them as little to do as possible, we label & arrange all the specimens for putting in ourselves, take all out when dry to see tickets in proper place, dry many delicate things ourselves

[[5]] boil the Orchideae when we have not cors.subl.[?] bottle & tiket[sic] for spirits & do all such responsible work as in our opinion should never be left to the best serv[an]ts. All this entails a very laborious life as you may suppose & leaves much less time for the microscopic examination than we should like, less of course for my drawings & none for any other pursuits. Our average expense when we march is £1 a day here, but we do not move above once a week. Our intervals cost almost nothing, only rice & fowls, we drink no wine beer or spirits, have neither sauce nor pickle, Inglis sends a loaf & butter daily, Atherton at Dacca gave us an enormous canister of magnificent Tea, a cwt *2 of sugar & many other necessaries so that our personal expenses are nothing. This is necessary especially for Tom, who has spent all his pay in India on books &c & whose father has lost literally every shilling of his property by the failure of Colquhoun & Co some 3 years ago, Tom once expected 500 a year when his father

[[6]] died, now not a fraction. On the other hand we are rare--well have plenty & are most comfortable, & I still hope to have in the long run cost you no more than the £500 per annum originally calculated upon, i.e. £400 for 2 years from Go[vernmen]t £300 for one = 1100 & the other £400 I suppose I may go on your credit for. As it is I have as yet drawn I believe £900 -- The W. & F. [Woods & Forests Department] not having volunteered to make up the 300 for this year to 400 is a damper, I expected they would have done so, not for the money's sake, but to remove the evident implication, of a reduction of salary from one already small, the same or more work being expected. I would not have you agitate the matter however, but it is a sad damper to my prospects in that quarter.
The Pine here is exactly & in all respects similar in habit & appearance

[[7]] to Scotch fir, both young & old & of course quite unlike Griffiths figure which gives it as a tree of the Abies post & habit it fruits abundantly & I doubt not I shall get loads of seed. Poor Griffiths seems to have botanized this country & perhaps many others excessively carelessly, the fine trees he totally overlooked in his daily marches is quite extraordinary, & these not the plants of a season but perennials such as Oaks which must have been in finer condition in Nov[embe]r than now. The tone of his journals diary & correspondence too, is wild loose & inaccurate to a degree & really he must have noted the particulars of plants & scenery about the Bungalow here, with his eyes shut. Mc Lelland [McClelland] be it remembered has made the worst of his poor friend's failings.


We went to Kollong rock a few days ago, of which I have made a little sketch for you in pencil, a fine Didymocarp. was the best thing we found but I have it before from Choongtam in Sikkim

[[8]] I have just finished & sent a letter to Bentham who I hope is well & as usefully busy as ever. Did he write the admirable article on Torrey & Gray's U.S. Genera in the Kew Annals? I hope he will write one on Wights works &, Griffiths too. I doubt not you have just cause of complaint with Wight for his neglecting to send you specimens as he really should in duty & gratitude, but that does not diminish the value of his labours, nor interfere with his most extraordinary merit for zeal, steady application & the manner in which he has overcome all but insufferable difficulties to a jungle Botanist, especially in the "Benighted Presidency" as Madras is called. To me his work is quite invaluable with all its good -- few mistakes.


Now I shall break off this, & take another sheet to answer two three of yours, which have come to hand almost all of a heap, the post to this from Calcutta is very bad.
Ever your aff[ectionate] son| Jos D Hooker [signature]

ENDNOTES
1. This sentence is written vertically at the top of page 4.
2. Abbreviation for centrum weight, also known called a hundredweight.


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