Mary Taylor tells of the first appearance of Charlotte at Roe Head, on January 19th, 1831.
"I first saw her coming out of a covered cart, in very old-fashioned clothes, and looking very cold and miserable. She was coming to school at Miss Wooler's. When she appeared in the schoolroom, her dress was changed, but just as old. She looked a little old woman, so short-sighted that she always appeared to be seeking something, and moving her head from side to side to catch a sight of it. She was very shy and nervous, and spoke with a strong Irish accent. When a book was given her, she dropped her head over it till her nose nearly touched it, and when she was told to hold her head up, up went the book after it, still close to her nose, so that it was not possible to help laughing."
This was the first impression she made upon one of those whose dear and valued friend she was to become in after-life. Ellen Nussey recalls her first sight of Charlotte, on the day she came, standing by the school-room window, looking out on the snowy landscape, and crying, while all the rest were at play. Charlotte was younger than she, and her tender heart was touched by the apparently desolate condition in which she found the oddly-dressed, odd-looking little girl that winter morning, as "sick for home she stood in tears," in a new strange place, among new strange people. Any over-demonstrative kindness would have scared the wild little maiden from Haworth; but Ellen managed to win confidence, and was allowed to give sympathy.
To quote again from "Mary's" letter:--
"We thought her very ignorant, for she had never learnt grammar at all, and very little geography."