Page:Memoirs of Henry Villard, volume 1.djvu/61

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countrymen as “Latin peasants.” The most prominent among them was Friedrich Hecker, the well-known exile, who also played no mean political part in this country. He lived about ten miles distant from Belleville. I heard a good deal of him, but never chanced to see him in those days. He and one other among the “Latin peasants” were alone successful as farmers. Even my uncle, as it afterward turned out, failed, notwithstanding the hardest kind of labor, to make both ends meet.

In the latter part of January, to my own great relief and joy as well as that of the others, letters arrived from my father to my uncle, and from my mother and sisters to me. The former expressed his gratitude very warmly to his brother for receiving me into his family, and indicated his willingness to provide for my support to a moderate extent until I could earn a regular living, offering, of course, to reimburse my uncle for any outlay for necessaries that he had incurred for me. I really had no right to expect anything else from him. My mother and sisters wrote in the most loving and encouraging manner. Their letters were full, too, of a great amount of interesting local news. What with the reopened relations with my dear ones and my pleasant surroundings, I felt once more very content and happy.