Elizabeth Trist to Nicholas P. Trist

My Dearest Nicholas

I am surprised that you do not Receive my letters in due time, for those your Brother and self write me, are seldom more than 21 days before they reach me and a free communication with your self [and] Brother is the greatest happiness that I at present enjoy, I am sorry to hear that you have been so unfortunate with your Crop but these Misfortunes are unavoidable and we must bear what is unavoidable we cannot remedy I am truly grieved for Mr Tournillon having to pay by installments for that Plantation and the Ill luck that attended him this year and if I remember right last year, his saw Mill was unproductive, but you must none of you let your sperits be depress’d but look forward to better fortune you need not despair for honest industry will ultimately meet its reward, I am more grieved to hear of the children having the whooping cough which they will not get the better off for several months I wish their Father wou’d take them a journey for change of Air is an excellent remidey for that complaint, I wish I had Mary with me tell her if she is only as good as she is represented that I fear I shall love her too much what do the children take for their cough there is a patent medicine, made by an English Apothocary for that Complaint but I forget the name, but I found it Salutary when I administerd it, to your Father, I feel more anxious about the children than the loss of the crop tho that a serious misfortune these hard times God only knows what is for our good certain it is the times are very bad, but the old Proverb that what cant be cured must be indured and we may as well Submit with a good grace The prospect I had To of spending the winter in Albemarle is intirely abandon’d my intention was to have hired a carriage in Lynch burg Francis Gilmer who was on Horse back wou’d have been my my escort the weather was fine and the roads good but I was taken too unwell beside I had not sufficient of the needful to bear my expences without having recourse to the aid of Francis under such circumstances I had to relinquish my scheme tho’ contrary to my wishes not that I have cause to complain for I am treated with as much kindness as I have a right to expect but the House is too small for a large family to tell you the truth I have very little inducement to wish for a long existance my mind dwells on melancholy events which a long existance always produces I think if I cou’d ride out and take more exercise I shou’d rest better at night and consiquently banish coroding reflections Oh My Dear Nicholas how ardently I long to see you I am afraid your misfortunes will procrastinate the period allotted for your return, after a long drouth which destroyd the vegetatian in a great degree but on the 25th it raind all day and night 26 the rain continued greatest part of the day 28th a most tremendious Storm trees falling in all direction, those in our Yard blown down but in the afternoon it mitigated of its violence but we have had so much rain that the roads are almost impassible I am in hopes that we shall not have as long a spell of bad weather as we had of dry I long for exercise Peachey after being very much indisposed for several weeks got better and has left us, to attend Franklin Henry and Partrick courts, he seems to take it unkind that you have never written to him—I mention’d in my last that Mr Jefferson had not disposed of any of his land at the Forest and has put it under better regulation than it had been but I fear the poor Negroes fare hard I wish they were as well treated as Mr Tournillons are I understand Mr Jefferson and some of the family are to be up next month I believe I wrote you that all the Monticello females had been sick but now they are in pretty good health for I hear no complaints The roads in consiquence of the heavy rains we have had occasions great difficulty in travilling the Mails are are prevented coming in time but I hope when the water Courses are less dangerous and the roads dried that we shall be more comfortable, I was taken last night verry Ill with a complaint that I never had in the same degree before a kind of cholick I eat nothing, in short I eat very little at best that cou’d have given it to me I made some tincture of 3 herebes yesterday fortunately and have had recourse to it, this Morning, tho free from pain I feel sick and debilitated My desire to see you is very great but God only knows if I shall hold out to see you again my mind is constantly occupied thinking of you all I have much to be thankful for. My friends are all kind and attentive to me but I stand in need of some comforts a roof room to my self and and a servant of my own where there is a large family and an infant to attend four servants and two half their time laid up, is not sufficient I hope your Brother will succeed in the management of the High land Plantation and that eventually success will attend you, ! how times are changed, all over the world, I fear Mr Tournillons purchase of that plantation I fear has turn’d out unfortunate I am afraid that he will not succeed agreeable to his expectation it is to be hoped that a change will take place for the better, times are Melancholy all over the World let me hear from you often and endeavour to render my last days comfortable and happy I have had my share of Trouble in this World and ought to be satisfied at the change that must shortly take place—Mary unites with me in love to Mrs Brown Kiss the children for me and assure Mr Tournillon of my ardent wishes for his health and prosperity

excuse this scrawl I scribble because I want amuseme[nt] and I think of you all so much that it is a solace to my sperits when I address you if you did but love me as much as I do you you wou’d let me hear from you oftner I hope your Brother will write to me this week May God bless and Preserve you all is the Ardent prayer of your affectionate

Grandmother Trist
RC (DLC: NPT); edge trimmed; addressed: “Nicholas—P— Trist Esqr La Fourche Louisiana”; stamped; postmarked Liberty, 5 Oct.