Former Confederate Officer writes future wife

Date Written

June 27, 1869

Member of Series

Andrew Carson Cowles was 36 years old when this was written.
The recipient, Margaret Reynolds, was 22 when it was received.

Andrew Carson Cowles died 11 years, 6 months, 9 days after writing this.
It was written 150 years, 2 months, 20 days ago.
It was a Sunday.

Hamptonville, N. Carolina
Saturday, June 12, 1869

My Dear Cousin Maggie,

As Carrie is absent, gone with Pa on the visit of which you know so much and the arrangement of which you left specially in my charge. I have concluded to write you a short note from this isolated but interesting ground and village; really it is such a Herculean task that I cannot think of making it interesting. But to commence, I will first here remark that that I insisted Mr. Pendleton visit me from East mills to division he accepted and spent the evening with us. Lensy was so disconsolate and looked so “sad & lonely” that he left in the evening for Iredell the next day and the night I spent at home but on Monday I sat off for Wilkes spent a couple of days [?] [?] it answering the highly civilized and Christian people of the brushy mountains, and finally [?] up Tuesday night at Dr. Bushman’s [?] sister E. & the Dr. Grissing own zoo. Aise nursing a puppy and the other a kitten They were glad to see me and I think I left them next day much beautified by my visit and as poor Dick Daniels negroes would say, “injoying better spirits.”

I came by the Cherry orchard and found it like some banquet hall deserted. The May cherries were nearly gone the black hearts just getting ripe—the little [?] bing tree that I planted two years ago was full of lush iris dark [?][?] I wished that I could hand you some of them or even send you some but alas! What is the use of writing? I fixed up a chestnut bark basket and [?] down a gallon for Sipey and Pa. They will not probably be ashamed [?] [?] evening. I had hard work to get Pa off. You had all teased him so much about Aunt Sarah which together with his [?] disposition to [?] any thing like a visit [?] a change made him pull back a couple of days. Since I commenced these doltings of domestic incidents—The dinner [?] has [?] and the Mocksville mailed arrival [?] parted—Sunday. “Since sisters” as Bro Miley used to tease them have come & gone. Some for mail and some for news which I had within time nor [?]to give them verbally and Joe—[?] the by I had forgot to [?] in that he arrived last Saturday night [?] [?] he has grown a great deal and is a proficient scholar for one of his age—Well he has put [?] [?] my knife for the [?] time to [?]

I think I will go up to [?] and bring him one as a compromise.

My health as been fine for the last two weeks never better. I hope Mrs. [?] continues to improve and that she will realize substantial improvement from her visit home.--Gus Plack [?] starts to Virginia Tuesday night & I really think Carrie would not be hard to persuade to make a trip over there. If John should conclude to test the medicinal waters of the Grayson Springs. I think she’d go without any persuading. I visited the David Moles’ [?] on Deep Creek yesterday day evening and [?] whilst there a fine lot of eels and perches & Chubs, more than we all could eat for breakfast. I am invited this evening to a [?] party to [?] at Mr. Nick Dalton’s but having charge of the household ad interim can not go down.

How did you find Statesville? It certainly should appear to give at a [?] in contrast with the monotonous life of our village. We miss you here very much. Could you manage to get into a decline [?] & come up for your health [?] you do—or Sipey brighten up I think I shall desert the old homestead. I [?] first had a visit from our friend Oscar Williams. You will recollect that he went to Indiana this spring. Well the spring [?] that you saw him assisting across the [?] in one of your Sunday training [?]—wrote to him to come back and he is here, arrived last night and will probably remain in the old north state. We have quite a lively time in official legal & [?] circles here—wives [?] their husbands for maintenance and alimony—Billy has some two or three cases up a Judge Nick’s Court and was out yesterday and is out today looking out for them—he will put only some useful lessons for an unmarried young lawyer. I hope it will not have the effect to postpone his visits to North Fork (Ash Co.) He now and then [drinks] upon the choruses of life in the [?] and is I think balancing between Missouri and the mountains much & is so, so—and Pa says Aunt J. is fast wearing out—Sylvester is expected. We hope and look for him every day. I opened a letter in [?] p.m. mail to Dr. Bushman and post marked Raleigh and learned from it that Jack is doing very well. That is he is comfortable not impatient and restless as he was when he entered the institution, tho I presume there is no hope entertained for his ultimate recovery. Now haven’t I [?] if not a graphic & prolix news sheet, equal in all events to a copy of the American.

I don’t know when I will be in Statesville, have not heard from Haynes Davis in regard to our prospect in town, but think I shall so [?] to Charlotte next week and on to Mrk after. I would rewrite this scrawl did I not know it will afford you much pleasure to criticize its chirography, orthography, etc. You may characterize Dr. Campbell and any particular he may [?] for a game of W. His. [?] a [?] house notice or immediately upon my arrival in Statesville. Present my regards to all and believe me,

Affectionately,
Andrew C. Cowles

Scans of Letter