Brampton March 31st 1862
My dear Georgia. I wrote you a long letter to send by Brother Andrew but the old
fellow, as usual, did not follow the plan he announced, and never returned from the Ct. House, so I concluded to destroy that epistle, as your husband doubtless would communicate its contents,for a few days while the army was moving, I was distracted and demented, stragglers continually coming and soliciting food, but since our men are in camp, the discipline is so strict , that they are not allowed to venture out far, have not seen Capt Means, or even Charlie Conway for sometime, James Glassell was here a day last week, enroute to join his company. he was just from home, reported Gen Ewell’s division is encamped on Uncle Wms farm, Wheat’s battallion on one side int he wheat field, and Gen Taylor’s brigade around the house, Gen T. and his adjutant Surget occupy Uncle Wm house, the latter gent a millionaire and bachelor, has left all his property to the Confederacy in case he dies. on Mr Cunningham’s land, near Richland Bowyer’s artillery is planted Uncle Wm, of course will have to suspend farming. Aunt Harriet was in Prince Wm when our army retreated from Manassas, she retired with an invalid Sister to Fauquier this sister has
typhoid fever now at the point of death from moving, she contracted the disease
from nursing a nephew, who had the fever, which he took in camp. Gen Gus Smith who was in joint command with Johnson at manassas is now in command at Fredg. and Holmes and some of the Ga troops have been ordered to N. Carolina, a great many think that Fredg will be the point the Federals will attack, Davis & Johnson say they never saw finer natural defences than from Falmouth to Stafford Ct. Ho–some few persons are leaving F–cousin Elizabeth and Gustavus go down to Madison, all the contrebands of the latter have stampeded. Roy Mason of King George has lost his “animated property”, his out hands stampeded first, the family were out spending the evening when the house servants disappeared with all the paraphernalia of the family did not even leave a change of raiment. I understand in a Mr Saunders house on Grace Street Richmond , five thousand sabres were found, his loyalty has been suspected, he was a frequenter of Botts residence. Poor Lucy Taylor died on the 15th while asleep. She expressed her willingness to die, sister is deeply distressed, Miss Charlotte in Richmond speaks of going to housekeeping. Mrs. Henry & Mrs. Temple also there. Mrs. Judge Scott still at Oakwood says the Yankees shall not drive her away. Extra Billy keeps his family in Warrenton. Gen Johnsons staff occupy the Nalle’s house.
The old lady had her meat house robbed of 24 pieces of meat lately. Miss Mary confined to her bed, Dr.. Slaughter at last pronounced her lungs are affected, the ladies are in mourning. Mrs Welsh says she had dreadfull times when the army was moving, thirty forty soldiers a day, her kitchen, cabins, weaving rooms and her house filled , they even went in her chamber one man announced he intended passing the night there, he found the fire so pleasant. refugees also stopped there with all their servants, horses and waggons Mrs Madison and Slaughter also had a good many. we comparatively had few not more than five a day. The turkey you succeeded in raising last year was so dreadfully lacerated by the hogs or hawks that it has died from the wounds. I have six hens setting, two on duck eggs, your turkeys will not lay. Brother Andrew has been gardening this week, has planted some potatoes and arranged his hot bed, everything without looks so country[?] today that one is not inclined to think of vegetables. I received a long letter from Jinnie Smith, she writes a good deal of cotton is waggoned from Corpus Christie to Matamoras, and they received coffee, & sugars in return. Bessie Ware enjoyed her trip to Mexico, Jinnie & she are now at Cousin Georges, Bessie is expected soon in Louisiana, en route home, I expect she will be amazed to hear her old homestead is now under Lincoln’s jurisdiction, her Father is in Ashby’s cavalry, her Brother in Col. Field’s regiment. Mrs Willis has sent off her servants, she will go soon.
Betie, Hannah and the servants are all well. You must not let Bryan forget me, I would love much to see him, suppose he grows more & more interesting, was sorry to hear he had the croup. Sister regrets he cannot have his [?] every day, send s her love to you, says she misses the children very much, you must kiss [?] for her. Dr. Richardson has sent his family to Miss. he joins the army in Tenn, he wrote that flour is $17 per barrel in New Orleans. I see butter in Richmnond cost a dollar per lb. Remember me to Tucker, when is he coming. George Patton has returned to his regiment. old Mrs Patton is staying with Sally. Our army is encamped from above the Ct. to five miles below. You must write me soon. Temple sends his love. Chester fears Bryan will forget him, so desired me to write a few lines to him My dear little Bryan, you ought to have been here to have seen the soldiers they were passing continually, I am sure you would have liked the horses and the gay flags. I am grinding coffee this evening, and think how often you have been in the room when I thus have been engaged and how black you made yourself. I suppose you have fine times at Caris brook, you must not forget me. Yours with love Chester
My dear Bryan, Your Cousin Temple, thinks very often of you, and would love much to have a romp with you. I have been busy gardening, but the weather is so bad, fear I shall have to cease hoeing. I love you very much yours with love. Temple
Brother Andrew has been unwell ever since his return from Fluvanna, had a bilous attack, suppose he told you of Mr Course’s arrest you will be imprisoned for entertaining traitors I suspect. Excuse this illegible epistle, but my ink is indifferent Yours with love Ella M. Grinnan
Betie sends her love to the children, Brother sends his love to you and regards to G–
Letter to Georgia Screven Bryan Grinnan, possibly from her husband’s sister.