Elizabeth Trist to Nicholas P. Trist

By the time you receive this my Beloved Grand son you will have got through your examination and I hope with honour, for nothing is so grateful to my [. . .] heart as to hear your self and Brother extold for your for your good conduct and attention to your Studies, I receivd a letter from him dated the 8th he mentiond his intention of going to pay a visit on Saturday if possible to my Cousin Thompson at Mount Holly he thought it wou’d be a pleasant Trip and he was sure of a cordial reception I hope that you will make it convenient to call and see my friends at New Mills and Mount Holly it is so convenient to Travil in that quarter of the World as the Stages go daily from Philad to Mount Holly the He mention’d your having advisd him to set out immediately for W Point and he shou’d have no objection but the weather was pleasant, and very cool and he coud hardly leave it so soon, he hopes to pass the sultry months pleasantly opposite west Point and that he shall enjoy all the necessary advantages for prosecuting his Studies, he says that he has a great curiousity to see you again, it is so long since he had that pleasure that he almost forgets your appearance—in your letter of the 1st instant you seem’d to be displeased, and observed that you did not see what necessity there was for writing to you on the subject of the Book as the Postage must be paid and if any Body was to suffer by the mistake that it must be your self nor did you see the necessity of my exhorting you to take care of your reputation, I have no recollection of having given you such advise, I presume I must have meant to caution not to place too much confidence in mankind for many are not very careful of the trusts that are reposed in them I was a little fretted at the Idea that you shou’d have to pay so much Money but I have the pleasure to inform you that a few days since the Major was in Town and Mr Winn who I believe had written on to the General Post Office for instruction concerning it, told the Major that there was nothing to pay, and sent the Book which I shall send to the Mountain by the first opportunity—I have not seen any of the family yet, tho the Girls write to me occasionally and make professions of friendship Mary has become a corrispondent of mine my two last letters were from Ellen and Mary date 6th and 17th May Ellen had taken a Trip to Richmond with her Aunt Cary but they were only to Stay a fortnight, Manns Wife and her Sister are at Ashton when I last heard Jefferson Randolph had gone to Richmond to settle or rather dispose of some property belonging to the estate of his late Fatherinlaw he had rode one of the Carriage Horses which was the excuse offerd for Mrs Randolphs not coming to see us Mr Randolph is not to be at home till some time next month Mary mentiond that Cornelia had just received a letter dated 14th from Mead he had gone to Richmond in was just preparing to go to Richmond, I have been detaind here longer than I expected in consiquence of bad weather and indisposition but I hope to get to Pen Park and from there to Ridge–way, and try and visit my friends in that Neighbourhood from there I shall go to Mr Higginbothams as I make it a point to visit those first who I am indebted a visit tho I may call at the Mountain on my way, I have a great many visits to pay but I am afraid for want of a mode of conveyance I shall not have it in my power I wish most ardently to be in Bedford but how I am to get there I cant devise, It seems Mr Jack Burwell will not take Williams Burwells carriage from the coach makers in Lynchburg where it was repaird Mr B not having mention’d it in his Will and the coach maker charges 250 $ Jack B, will not take it, leaves it for the Man to dispose off for what he can get and take it for the repairs so I am disappointed and how to get there I am at a loss to [. . .] conjecture Mary thought I might borrow Peter Minors Gig and William coud drive me but he lent it last year to Mr Skinner and desired him to sell it when he got to Baltimore Lucy preferd a Dearborn but the scarsety of Money will not permit him to get one at present. I feel some times low spirited at the thought, of being so helpless and a burthen to my friends, but my Race is almost run, and you will not have a garrulous old Grand Mother to plague you—, Browse mentiond that he went to a B, C, D at Mr Richard Bache’s, this is a party at which the Read aloud, and the Gentlemen, amuse them selves at the Card Table or listen if they find any thing interesting, which was not the case that1 evening for the Book was a dull Novel by Miss Porter lately come out in the course of the evening he ask’d Mrs Bache what had become of the family of Mrs Catharine Bache since her discease & he thinks she replied “like all large families which lose their head they quarrel’d about nothing and dispersed2 She gave him to understand that the two families meaning her own and Mrs C Baches, had not been on good terms for a considerable time, so he stopped any further enquiry.—I dont think it much to her credit to speak in that slighty manner of a family she is so nearly allied to particularly at this time as to Mrs Catherine Bache there was not a woman of more principle or had warmer feelings of friendship but she wou’d not readily put up with imposition and I suppose they have had some dispute about the settling of the Estate I have too good an opinion of your heart to believe that you can have forgot the kindness you received from Mrs Bache, she wou’d have befriended you had you stood in need as long as she had a sixpence you can not have forgotten the many happy days that you have pass’d with her children tho on your Brother the [. . .] they made no impression, by enquiring at the post Office I dare say you might hear of them—what a cold heart that must be that can lose the Remembrance of past kindnesses or the recollection of early friendships, tho I love your Brother and think his integrity is built on a solid Rock, but I cou’d wish him more alive to old friendships than to new I shou’d be glad if you wou’d bring some little memento to your Cousin Mary and Emma suppose you were to get two dresses of Nankeen crape they are better than Canton any handsome colour, and Mar Murrys primer and spelling Book in verse for the children and if you can bring me a ½ Dozn pair of Kid short gloves colourd, I will be glad as this will be the last letter I shall trouble you with while at the point you will excuse my being so troublesome especiall when3 I shall dispence with your writing as I shall soon have the pleasure I hope of seeing you as you pass through Washington you no doubt will wait on the President and I shoud be glad that you woud call on Mrs Freeman and my friend Mrs Simms she lives at Mr Wallbacks while in that City but she may have gone to her Sons with the Remembrance of this family and my wishes for your health and happiness I bid you Adieu

E Trist
RC (NcU: NPT); torn at seal; addressed: “Mr Nicholas—P—Trist west Point New York”; stamped; postmarked Charlottesville, 26 May.

The novel may have been Anna Maria Porter, The Village of Mariendorpt : A Tale (London, 1821; reprinted that same year in both Boston and New York).

1Manuscript: “that that.”
2Omitted closing quotation mark editorially supplied.
3 Manuscript: “when when.”