An Interesting Letter from Trooper A. DeCow.
Trooper A. DeCow has written from Hoopstadt, South Africa, on April 3 to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. D. DeCow, Middlemiss, as follows:
"Well things are going pretty easily here right now, and I don't know how things are going to shape themselves. There is considerable talk of peace about here now, and it is hoped on all sides that satisfactory terms will be made. The Boers have sent in a peace commission, as you will have seen in the papers, composed of all the Boer officials, and they ought to be able to come to some kind of terms. The British are tired of this war and the expense, doubtless, but the Boers are certainly more so.
"The country is a total wreck, except the cities. It is a fine grazing country, in fact, the best in the world. There must have been millions of cattle before the war, and they are the largest cattle I ever saw. They are all colors, and have as a rule a very large hump on their neck where the yoke fits.
Everybody through this country along the rivers were ranchers, cattle and sheep, - and they certainly must have been wealthy. But they are wealthy no more, as their ranches are wrecks, and their cattle all in the hands of the British.
"You know the bulk of the heavy transport, is drawn by oxen for sometimes over 100 miles - sixteen oxen to a wagon - and often 200 wagons in a train or convoy, making 3,000 oxen on one convoy. Of course the fast convoys are runs by mules.
ï¿½There will be lots of chances of making money in this country after a while. Clerks in stores get from 15 to 25 pounds a month, but board is a little high yet and will be so until after the war is over as everything eaten in the country, except meat, is brought in. Pay in the mines is about one pound per day. I have been promoted to corporal with the pay of 7s. 6d. per day."