Elizabeth Trist to Mary House Gilmer

My Dear Girl

Your charming letter of the 29th of March came to hand on the 4th instant. I had written but a few days before to Peachy or shou’d have replied immediatly, it mortifies and grieves me that so few of my letters reach you tho it is often painful owing to a Rhumatic affection in my right hand, to write I am certain I never let a month pass over without addressing you and shou’d have gratified my self more frequently had I not fear’d puting you to unnecessary expence and trouble. it is a great relief to my mind when I am anxious to hear from a beloved friend to take up my pen and converse with them, to you I cou’d pour out every feeling of my heart because I know your prudence and good sense wou’d attribute its effusions to it their proper causes no being on earth can make good the loss of your society to me I think of you always and am supprorted under some afflictions by the hope of soon being with you I hope my letter to Peachy will arrive safe in that, I mention’d some circumstances that gave me uneasiness a full communication I am deterd from, by the uncertainty of my letters going safe in a letter I wrote to you in April by Doctor Baker I mention’d a kind of short hand so far as related to names let me know if you have received it. matters remain in the family as they did when I wrote last, All apprehensions of a Tratoris nature have subsided The Troops all but Two Companys sent to different Posts General Wilkinson Secretary Graham and numbers of other are I suppose arrived ere this at Richmond as evidence against Burr I fear that they will not be able to prove Burr even guilty of a misdemeanor and that party animosity will again rouse from its slumber I observe that all the federalist are Burrs friends—the enemies of the present administration will step forth in his support, they have it in circulation here that the President is endeavouring to sink Monroe that there shou’d be no competition with Madison for the next Presidency which I am bold to say is no [. . .] such thing not that Mr Madison may not be preferd by the President to fill that Station, but I can never believe that he wou’d do anything to injure Monroe Governor Claibourn and Mr Daniel Clark have been up on the Spanish Territory to fight in consiquence of Mr Clark having attempted to injure him with the President and the members of Congress they have long been innimical to each other Mr Clark is a man of great observation had resided some years in this country and had it in his power to give useful information to our Government and did, when acting as our Consul[. . .] here, it is at this place it is said that it was a great mortification to him not being appointed one of the commissioners when we took possession of this country he has from that time from some cause I dont know, held the Governor in contempt whether they have settled the breach I know not, the first Shot wounded the Governor thro the thick part of his right thigh and the Ball passing thro occasion’d a contusion on the other thigh, they both it is universally agreed beheaved as well on the occasion as possible there was no concession made on either side the Governor after he fell Mr Clark standing in his place told the seconds to inform his adversary that he was unable to proceed furthur at that time being in great pain Mr Clarke ran to the barge for some wine and water and brought the men to carry him to the boat he is confined to his bed but is not thought to be dangerously Ill not having much fever I heard Mr Clark say that when he came to this place he possess’d no property. by various speculation in a few years made five hundred thousand Dollars he lost a very large sum about 5 years ago but has since recoverd it, I believe, he is a very liberal man has promoted the interest of many they say that last year he gave away 27,000 [. . .] in securities loans and donations. he is warm in his attachments and vindictive where he dislikes. so much for Mr Clark—I sincerly sympathise with Mrs Jones. Our fates are similar with the advantage of more youth on her part and a promising son who will I hope live to be the prop and comfort of her declining years Frank Read is a clever fellow he may spend more than is prudent but it is like a Gentleman he has no vices and is much respected I presume that he will Marry and settle in this country if his sister visits you I shou’d not be surprised if he follow’d her to Henry he is much attach’d to her and I am certain that he will Strain every nerve to make her easy have they not some property in Norfolk I heard him mention a Store that he ment to dispose of. I shall be glad if you get Mrs Jones with you I feel much for your situation altho few wou’d submit better than you to any situation yet so total a seclusion from society must affect your Sperits accustomed as you have always been to living where you have had a great deel, we are always wishing that Peachy wou’d come to this country he wou’d make more Money with less fatigue Henry says if he wou’d only come and pay us a visit he is satisfied that he wou’d remane here, we shall have a very hot summer and I fear a very sickly one the river continues very high and the weather very warm but we have daily a shower which refreshes the earth instead of being very warm we experienced the last winter more severe cold than ever known we kept fires till May many perish’d. [. . .] my health and sperits are better since the hot weather has comme[enced?] than it has been since I have been in the country that is I feel less relaxation and the heat dont occasion so great restlessness tho I always perspired when I had not a fever yet not as copiously as now, I sleep better which enables me to pass my days more pleasantly we have a pleasant comfortable habitation in a airy situation we have as good a chance of escaping sickness as most fevers are commencing and they do say there are some cases of the yellow fever chiefly among strangers Kentuckens they drink hard and expose them selves, and they get what they call the Moon fever if they are taken Ill when the moon shines. I hope that I may not suffer long if I get another fever “To the aged death if not a welcome visitor guest is at least an expected visitor and they may be supposed to feel little reluctance on leaving a World in which they have become solatary for another where they may hope to meet those whoes earlier departure they have long lamented I dont feel altogether solatary for I have several to love yet, and I trust that1 I am not disliked by any one, your poor Father complains of not being in good health but I trust he will be long spared to his family on enquiery Wm Brown [. . .] late and that the Vessel your Brother saild in, arrived in Charleston last Feby the Capt knew nothing of George I feel uneasy about him I wrote to my Brother I am to make some enquiery I shall repeat my solicitations for information respecting him I have not received a line from him for many months tho vessels are frequent from Charleston. Keep up your sperits you are good and must be happy every one has somthing to bear, let me know if you are in a way to encrease your family. when Peachy commences building on his own land and if he has made any clearing, is your the soil red as in Albemarle and equally productive? dont forget when you are building to add a room for me. Hariet says that nothing wou’d give her greater pleasure than to visit her Virginia friends Charles Brown has left princeton College in consiquence of a Rupture that took place betwen some of the Collegians and the Trustees in consiqu he was not among the agressors but became a party by what he thought the arbitary proceedings of the Trustees, three where expelld and two hundred left the school Twenty of the number returnd Wm. has written to him to go to Yale College his letters indicate proper principles and improvement in style he now and then gives his Brother a specimen of composition the last was in verse on the merits of some young lady in his letter to Mary he regrets the time that he lost in Virginia in Idleness with the best wishes of the family for yours your husbands and sons health I am My Dear Mary yours sincerely

E. Trist

Mr Mumford thinks highly of you which you may be proud of for he is rather cynical I shall have occasion to mention him here often I shall only use the two last letters of his name and shall observe the same when I mention Mr Jones or any of the famy

RC (LNHiC: Historic New Orleans Collection); torn at seal; addressed: “Mrs Mary Gilmer near Martinsville Henry County Virginia”; stamped; postmarked New Orleans, 16 June.
1 Manuscript: “that that.”
adidas Yeezy Boost 350
Mary House Gilmer
Date Range
June 15, 1807