Mary Trist Jones (Tournillon) to Catharine Wistar Bache

My very Dear Catherine

In my last letter I promised to give you an account of my affairs on the return of my Mother, but Alas, my health, which was then flattering, has prevented me, I have had a severe attack of my breast, which obliged me to submit to the opinion of my physician who had earnestly recommended bleeding, and Calomel, used as an alternative, but so much was I preposessed against those remidies that I obstinately resisted all his entreaties until I becam indifferent to the result, I have every reason to congratulate myself on the experiment, as it has already removed the cough and pain in my breast, restored my appetite, and given me new life, I could not have believed that any medecine would have produced so happy an effect in so short a time, and regret most sincerely I continued so long obstinate, I am sorry to say my dear friend that my affairs remain in the same unsettled state, the Government has not prosecuted their suit against me, and Mr Livingston has thought it advisable to take no further steps in the business, it places me in a most unpleasant situation as the mortgage on my property has subjected me to every possible inconvenience for I cannot raise a dollar on it and this plantation as yet has only been a source of great expence, I have had the cruel mortification of seeing my Children degenerate in this dismal solitude, as I have not had it in my power to pay their expences at school for the last twelvemonth, the expences of Education in this Country is enormous, the only seminary I could place them in with a conviction that their morals would be preserved, is New Orleans College, where I should be obliged to expend $600 each the first twelve months, and $450 the following years, I am resolved to relinquish every thing but the common necessaries of life to enable me to put Nicholas there this winter, by the last mail I received a letter from my Mother dated 26th of April who had Just received one from you of the 29th of February, wherein you mention the Doctors having dislocated his shoulder, and your childrens indisposition, I am most anxious to hear that they are all restored to health, write to me I entreat you, to hear from you is one of the greatest comforts left me, you cannot immagin dear Catherine what heart felt pleasure it gave me to learn also from my Mother that the property left by the death of Mr Bache would secure you and your Children an independance what consolation it must afford the Doctor remember me in the kindest manner to him I had indulged the fond hope of seeing you in a few years but this fatal war has detroyed all the castles I have built If I can manage to educate my Children Boys I ought to be satisfied but it requires more fortitude than I possess to be content under a seperation and a residence in Orleans is incompatable with my circumstances my Mothers situation is another source of anxiety to me her Sister who is in very delicate health has solicited her in the kindest manner to go and share her property she lives on the interest of 12000$ and at her death she will leave it to my Mother who refused to leave me in my unprotected situation when the property devolves on my Mother I know not how she will get it conveyed here, I think it is reduced to a certainty that the greatest portion of my days will be passed on this plantation, under that impression I am making every improvement in my power and having three mechanics among my Negroes In another year I shall be very comfortable, when I can fall on any safe plan for my Mother Trists coming I shall request it. her Grandsons must be the dearest objects to her in life and [. . .] this property must be endeared to her from her husbands having lived on it. I have not heard from my family in New york for a very long time. I brought with me here a hired servant but as I could not support that expence I dismissed her and having had had perfect confidence in her I gave her letters from [. . .] and David Jones and money to purchase [. . .] and nuts to send you it was only last [mon]th I learned that she had sent the letters without the fruit as she could not procure such as she thought I would be pleased with, should you hear of them neglect not to mention it, for after yourself and my Mother that family are entitled to my warmest affections and God knows I appreciate to the extent the proof I received of their Friendship Adieu my dear Friend believe Me I cherish as an inestimable blessing the attachment you feel for me nor can I relinquish the hope that we shall yet meet, embrace with affection your Children Tell Is my Emma recovering her hearing; does Sarah and Benjamin continue to improve and make you happy by their kind and dutiful behaviour? they promised to write to me, remember me to Mrs Howard, what part is she acting on this stages

God Bless you.
Mary Jones
RC (PPAmP: Catharine Wistar Bache Papers); torn at seal; addressed: “Mr Doctor Bache Franklin Court Market Street Philadelphia mail”; with note at head of text in Jones’s hand: “send me your direction”; endorsed by Bache: “Mrs Jones June 1812”; stamped; postmarked Baton Rouge, 23 July.
Mary Trist Jones Tournillon
Catharine Wistar Bache
Date Range
February 1, 1812