Ann C. Randolph Bankhead to Martha Jefferson Randolph
|Port Royal Feb 2 1810|
I am very sorry My Dear Mama That Jefferson has given you so bad an account of Mary & one that she does not deserve at all. it is true she was not as good then as she was before & has been since but I attributed it to their teasing her so much you know what a tease Jefferson is & because she did not bear it with perfect composure he took it in his head that she was the worst child in the world I do not think that she is the Least troublesome to any one on the contrary every member of the Family are very fond of her. John mentioned in his last letter to his Mama that he could not have thought that a child of Marys age could have contributed so much to the amusement & pleasure he experienced while at home. [. . .] Papa is very fond of playing with her & telling her stories & Mama of cuting out & fixing the pieces of a little cradle quilt that she is makeing you she is [. . .] an industrious little girl you cannot think how neatly she sews on the quilt & how pretty it is she has improved prodigiously in her reading & spelling & I shall inclose you a line out of her copy book to speak for it self she has just began to learn to write & finds it very difficult I suppose on account of her being so young but she is so anxious to be able to write to you that she would willingly surmount any difficulty she desire’s me to tell you that she can cut very well with her fingers in the bowls of the scissors Tell Aunt Virginia that as soon as it is dry enough to walk I will get the plates if they are not all gone & tell her also that there are some decanters Like mine some very clear glass ones small enough for catsup at 3 four pences as a piece little plates of every size & some cut glass salt cellars & any thing calico at 2 & 3 pence if she wants any of these articles she must let me know. I have added a great many pretty things to my collection Mrs Lightfoot gave me four cut glass sweet meat dishes & mama a cut glass [. . .] sugar dish & stand [. . .] 2 glass pitchers & some handsome pieces of china & I bought 3 decanters & some little glasses & Papa gave me a pair of plated candlesticks. I have net 2 beautiful pieces of neting for 2 of my counterpanes the third had a fringe Mama gave me a piece on condition that I would edge it for to trim a work Leno china cover & I am to work it the cover & a piece to put round one of the homespun counterpanes at Monticello & Mrs Lomax is doing me an elegant piece for the otherI have net also some beautiful trimmings for toilets & several have been made presents to me.the girls here are all makeing hexagon quilts without paper they cut the calico very exact & run it together & it Lays just as smooth & is much less trouble. when I began on so small a piece of paper I did not intend to have written so much adieu my Dear Mama it is almost bed time & my pen is very bad give my Love to Papa & kiss the children for me believe me to be my Dearest Mother your most affectionate daughter
Miss Judy Lomax has cut 2 beautiful pieces of paper for me
tell Francis to write to me
I have just received Ellens letter informing me of the birth of Lewis. tell her I have written to her 3 or 4 times.