Virginia J. Randolph (Trist) to Jane H. Nicholas Randolph

My Dear Sister

I suppose you have heard the reason of our coming to this place, as soon as Aunt Randolph tasted the waters a Striblings she was convinced that they were not strong enough to be at all effectual, & she said as we had come so far it would be a pitty to return with out having recieved any beneficial effects from the waters. at the Warm Springs we met with Mr & Mrs Peyton Randolph & Cousin Ann. we expected to have stay’d there a week, which would have been as long as Cousin Ann stayed, but Dr MacClerg told Aunt Randolph that he did not think it would be proper for us to bathe untill we had been here. we did bathe once though, & I can not describe to you the luxury of that delightfull bath. the water came just to my shoulders so that I was obliged to stoop to get my neck under water. it made my head swim dreadfully at first, & I was quite sick for several minutes however I got well enough accustomed to it to go all over the bath with the assistance of Cousin Anns hand, or by holding by a plank. I long to get back to the warm springs on account of bathing, Aunt Randolph was so much diverted with one lady, who simply wore a red tippet in to the bath, that she could not help telling Mr Peyton Randolph of her scanty coverings

a great change has taken place since I begun this letter, we have been dreading all day the dreary time we should pass after Mrs Gambill went away, which will be to morrow, & she is our only acquaintance here—I had to stop writing to go to supper, after which we went down to Mrs Gambills, where they persuaded Aunt Randolph to go on with them to morrow (which is Wednesday) to the salt Sulphur springs, stay there untill Saturday, then all go on to the Sweet Springs, which we will leave for the warm springs on Sunday or Monday, by that means we shall reach the warm springs as soon as we intended, as the part of the week which we were to spend here, will be employed in going to those places.

I am very glad for I expect after Mrs Gambill went we should have died, as none of the ladies except two Miss Colwells have visited us. there was to have been a dance this evening, but a lady ladies child (which has been sick for some days) got so much worse that they feared she will would lose it, the Dr is with it & we heard had been giving it opium. we have a good deal to do before we leave this, to morrow, Aunt Randolph has to get our clothes from a woman who lives about a mile off, the she had them to wash, & there is some thing to be done to the carriage. however if the water courses are low enough for us to ford we will leave this place, by ten oclock in the morning—

I can not write well for various reasons my Dear Sister, but as I know you had rather I should write badly, than not atall I will send this letter. it is very late & I am sleepy therefore good night

believe me ever your affectionate sister
V Randolph.

I had forgotten to tell you that they say my face is almost well & that my face skin is ten shades lighter. though it is beyond the power of the water,s to make me perfectly beautiful, therefore if my face & figure are not quite faultless you must not be disappointed. tell Brother Jeff that lady A[. . .]herly will spare no pains to get off of her hands Jesse & Anna, the two luckless nieces that she has with her, for alas they are shuned by all, both male & female. I am sure you are as tired reading nonsence as I am of writing it, Give my love to your husband & kiss your children, & then my Dear Sister Jane burn this, for the sake of your affectionat sister

V R

dont let a soul see this, but by all means keep it from Brother Jeffs eye, for I had as live publish a letter in the news papers as let him see it

pray write to me at least once. I leave this with a letter for Mama to be sent by the post I hope it will arrive safe Aunt Randolph sends her love to you & says that the water acts upon her as it did upon Baron Munchausen,s horse, if you recollect, where he was cut in two by the port cullis

RC (NcU: NPT); addressed: “Mrs T. Jefferson Randolph Milton Albemarle”; stamped; postmarked Sulphur Springs, 26 Sept.; endorsed by recipient: “Virginia.”