Margaret Smith Nicholas to Jane H. Nicholas Randolph

My dear Jane

I know it to be so delightful to hear from our friends that altho I wrote to you the day before yesterday, I cannot allow Phill to return without a few lines, I can give you no account of Elisabeth R. as the girls were disappointed in making her the visit they intended yesterday. they will go to day, and I hope will find her better. but I presume Phill, will call on her, and be able to give you a satisfactory1 account of her. I am afraid the little attention that has been paid to Elisabeth will depress her spirits, not naturally very good, I am told. But I think it ought not, as I am very sure it is to be attributed intirely to the disagreeable spell of weather we have had, and the great distance of her lodgings.

The dentist has not return’d yet, from Norfolk so that nothing has been done to Nelly’s teeth. she goes four days in the week to dancing School, She is a charming girl, not only handsome. but her temper is so delightful, and her manners so irresistably sweet. I think My Sister Carr is unusaly fortunate in her Children; Cary Ann, say’s Maria, is a great Belle, and that Dabney is much admired for the goodness of his Manners. I am very much pleas’d at this account of Dabney, as I always thought him very difficient in manners. I would send you Cary Anns letter but that I mean to send it to Polly, whose solitude being greater than yours, she requires more of this sort of aid from her friends, I think it very probable that you will not receive my last letter, I finish’d it too late for the Mail and sent it down by our fool William to put in the care of one of the passengers, and desire him to lodge it in one of the post offices, on the way, William did not see any of the passengers, and gave it to the driver who promis’d to deliver it to one of the Gentlemen, so that if you get it, it will be but a chance. I do not recollect any thing very important in it. Cary Ann I think say’s that she has written you that she will be at your house the first Week in June, and this determin’d me to change my plan of going to your house on my way to Warren, thus, I believe was all of any consiquence for you to know, that was in that letter.

The girls were at a very agreeable, sociable, party, at Mr Wickham’s on thursday evening, the Beautiful Miss Pacha was there from Baltimore, she eclips’d all the girls. But Mrs Wickham who is within a Month or two of her confinement, Your Father thought, (and indeed the girls agreed with him,) Was decidedly the greatest Beauty in the room. What permanent [. . .] beauty hers is. this is her thirteenth Child, that is now in expectation, and I beleive she has had as many premature births. she is certainly, quite a prodigy. but you will observe, that she has alway’s cultivated her Beauty, never neglects her appearence, and is as particular at this moment in her dress, as any young girl in the place. and indeed much mo[re] so, than either of my girls. Apropo, of dress, Margaret tells [me] that you have made a new sett of Corsetts, and to save you the trou[ble] of unlacing them, you have made them large enough to ju[. . .] out of them, when you take them off. If you love me, alter these Corsetts, before I see you. pad them on one side, and endeavour to make your shape look as well as I am sure with a little ingenuity2 there are you might do. you are now too old to have any scruples on this subject: a little art, in remedying the faults of Nature, is always alowable. it is unpardonable, and untasteful not to do it. My love to Jefferson, and kiss the dear little girls for me, as the time approaches, I feel all anxiety, all impatience to see all of you. I hope three Weeks to have this delightful pleasur[e]

Yours with great Affection
Peggy Nicholas

I meant to have written three or four lines, and here is two pages thickly written, but this is my way, it is only to take my pen, and I most certainly scribble of a long letter before I put it down again. I fear I must fatigue you.

RC (ViU: ER); edge chipped and folded.
1Manuscript: “saticefactory.”
2Manuscript:“ ingenunuity.”
Margaret Smith Nicholas
Date Range
May 23, 1818