Elizabeth Trist to Nicholas P. Trist

My Dearest Nicholas

I cannot resit the impulse of my heart to address you on the entrance of another year which I sincerely hope will be replete with happiness to you your Brother has gone to spend his vacation with Francis Epps 50 miles from here fortunately they had pleasant weather to travil Mr Epps was so kind as send me an invitation to visit them and spend some time that he wou’d send his carriage at any time I woud appoint, tho grateful for his kindness and very desireous of seeing him, I cou’d not feel disposed to undertake a journey at this season, expecting after so long a drouth that we shou’d have a wet or Severe winter I expected to be at Farmington ere this but my friends here prevaild on me to stay till after the Holy days were over Mrs Divers was to send the carriage for me when ever I thought proper to let her know when I wanted it, and I expect as soon as the weather moderates to leave this, which I shall do with regret, for I am very comfortable and my friends here are so kind and appear to be sorry to part with me and beg me to return as soon as I possibly can, The kindness of my friends is truly grateful to my heart, but what is more pleasing than the good opinion that is entertaind of my Grand Sons and which I hope they will always be emulous to preserve I wish I cou’d inspire you with more feeling towards me but that is not to be expected, you are both dutiful and as affectionate in your deportment toward me, but it is more from a sense of duty then attachment or else I shoud hear from you oftner and see your Brother more frequently than I do, but I must be content if you are so occupied as not to have time I can readily excuse you I wou’d not wish you to neglect what is important to your self to gratify me & no letters from your Mother has reachd us Browse began to be anxious as he expected remittances but I fear for their health or that Mr Tournillon finds it difficult to procure bills these are distressing times and Money has been so scarse as [. . .] not to be obtaind I understand Browse that he had settled your account with Leitch but I fear he has not settled all his own accounts I observed that he had some Money before he went gave me £13. which he got from Leitch desired me if I wanted any thing to get it at Leitches. I certainly want some articles but I shall not purchase any thing on credit that I can possibly do without It began to Snow on the 29th in the night and it continued all the day of the 30th has been extremely cold ever since and dry a fine time to fill the Ice Houses—I have not heard from the Mountain since the 20th Virginia wrote me an account of the play that they perform’d in Charlottesville Browse she believes was decidedly the Hero of the Tragedy and in the farce Miss Lucy and her nasty greasy dirty apothecary were admirable I believe I mentiond in my last their having perform’d the play of Douglass and the farce was the old man taught wisdom a Son of general Cocke performd the part of Lady Randolph and her sweet plaintive voice was the admiration of every body Epps was Lord Randolph and Walker Gilmer Norval Browse perform the character of Glenalvin and the Musick master in the farce they had so crouded an audience, that they had to perform to 30 spectators the next night after dancing all day Virginia says they wou’d gladly have staid to have seen the second performance but Jefferson wou’d not consent as all the Company had dispersed that lived at any distance— no Ladies [. . .] left I heard that Mr Randolph came up to spen[. . .] the xmass with his family I wrote to Mrs soon after he was elected Governor and observed that I hoped he wou’d like his Predesessor cut his coat according to his cloth meaning that he wou’d not spend more than his Salary by feasting the members of the Legislature &cc she desired Cornelia that she shou’d not put a sissors in it so I suppose she will not go to Richmond I have not heard if any of the Girls intend going Virginia is much troubled with the tooth in one of her eye teeth she was waiting for her Father to come up to consult him about having it extracted tomorrow there is to be an election to supply Mr Randolphs seat in the Legislature Doct Everet and Mr Southall are the candidates I have not heard from Bedford since the 22d Nov your Cousin Mary had then the Jaundise but was not ill but not hearing from her since makes me afraid for her health our friends are I believe in pretty good health I have had some Syntems of vertigo to day and you must in consiquence excuse my scrawl my sight is bad for want of spectacles that suit my sight which are not to be had here, our wants increase with our years, Mr and Mrs Minor desire to be remembered to you let me hear from you when you receive letters from home and their date God bless you

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RC (NcU: NPT); torn at seal; addressed: “Mr Nicholas–P–Trist West Point State New York”; stamped; postmarked Charlottesville, 4 Jan.; endorsed by recipient: “2d Jany 1820.”

Douglas, A Tragedy (douglass) was written by John Home (1722–1808), minister and playwright, and first performed in Edinburgh in 1756 (ODNB). An old man taught wisdom; or, the Virgin Unmask’d was written by Henry Fielding (1707–54), author and magistrate, and was published in 1735 (ODNB).