1861 April 28 Elmwood

Dear Agnes,

I arrived at home on Thursday, after a
pleasant trip, unattended with any thing worthy of
remark. I found the Captain of the “Valley” a very
agreeable and gentlemanly man, and the boat well
managed and comfortable. I arrived in Cincinnati in
time for the evening cars on Tuesday and did not delay
in taking my departure from that black Republican City
arriving in St Louis on Wednesday at about 10 o clock.
I found several of the neighbors in the city, namely
Doct Wilson, Doct Talley, D.K. Pitman and others, who
informed me of home, and quieted my mind in regard to
that matter, and reached home on Thursday about noon.
Since I have been at home, I have been busy looking
around to see what has been done in my absence, and
have come to the conclusion that Mr Sleet has done as
well as I could have done had I been here. He has
attended to the garden, and planted such vegetables as
we are in the habit of raising. But the Guineas had
destroyed all of the first planting of the peas. I shall
see that they commit no more depredations, upon the
forfeiture of their lives. We are busily engaged in planting
corn, and hope to get done in another week. I have not
seen any of Mr Woodson’s family, but I believe all are well.
The Bates family are making preparations for removing

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to Washington City, having rented out their house and
about disposing of their furniture. The girls intend
making a trip to our neighborhood before their departure
to spend a few days. It would not astonish me, if the City
of Washington is in ruins before they arrive there, for it
seems to be the prevalent opinion here, that Jeff Davis intends to
concentrate his army thereabouts, and the northern army is
making for that point also. As circumstances now indicate
the great battle of the country will be fought there.

The Secession feeling in this State is fast gaining strength
and public meetings are being held in all parts declaring
that their sentiments and their sympathies are for the South
and in some places I hear of the Secession flag being floating
in the breeze. God only knows what the end will be.

The currency of the country has depreciated, and our money
at home is at a discount of 10 per cent. You had better pay
your fare on the boat before you leave Kanawha, and if you
can, get specia to pay your R Road fare to St Louis for in
Cincinnati they will shave any paper you can get in Va.

I was over to see Mrs Wharton yesterday and found her about
as usual. She is much disturbed at the condition of the
Country and seems to deeply lament the dissolution of our once
glorious union. Doct Wilson has just left, and I resume the
pleasing duty of communicating my thoughts. We are in a crisis. I
feel that it is exceedingly doubtful whether or not we will be left
with a competence or not. What the course of the admn. at Washington will adopt, is uncertain. It seems from the present indications, that
the Slave states are to be subjugated, if it be possible to do it

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All the arms ^'(25 thousand muskets)’ have been removed from St. Louis, and have
been sent to Springfield Ill. This was done in the night, and
we are now, without any means of defence save our fowling
pieces, and without the means of getting the proper arms of
defence from abroad. But I will cease to dwell on this
melancholy subject longer. I shall endeavor to make
as much crop as I can and should we be let alone
we can have the means of living within ourselves, (that
is), what is necessary to sustain life–All that we can with
reason hope for, is, to be able to meet the demands of nature, and
with this, we must be content. All the neighbors are well so far as
I have learned, and are busily engaged in farming operations. I found
a letter from Eliza dated the 3rd Inst. and have not recd any other as
yet. I expect the mails are interrupted on the way, or surely I would
receive letters from her, punctual as she has always been. I shall
write her this evening and inform her of things at home, and enquire
why she has not written frequently. Bates has written a short
letter to you which I enclose. He is as fond of hunting & fishing as ever
but insists that he studies well at school. I did not go to church
to day as Mr Watson preaches at Pauldingville. My intention is
to stay close at home, and watch the movement of things, and
if the emergency comes Doct Wilson and myself have agreed that
we will take the servants by land through Arkansas to Texas. But
this is private talk. I shall write you again in a few days
& will keep you posted in regard to home matters. Love to all the
families at your Brother Nats’ & Mr Ruffins’. Kiss little Julia for me,

Affectionately yours
R B Frayser

MSS 14861

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