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Milling Papers.
Personal Correspondence, 1861-1864:

Electronic Edition.

Milling, James S.


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Text transcribed and annotated by Kristofer Ray
Text encoded by Christie Mawhinney and Natalia Smith
First edition, 2000
ca. 80K
Academic Affairs Library, UNC-CH
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill,
2000.

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Source Description:
(text) Milling Papers. Personal Correspondence
Milling, James S.
ca. 40 p.
Manuscripts Dept., Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill


        The electronic edition is a part of the UNC-CH digitization project, Documenting the American South.
        Transcript of the personal correspondence. Originals are in the Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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Library of Congress Subject Headings, 21st edition, 1998

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Revision History:


[Business and Agriculture]

        [Business]

        [From John R. Milling--Anderson County, Texas, To Dr. J. S. Milling--Bossier Parish, Louisiana]

Jan. 15th 1861

My Dear Brother

        I received a letter from [father] a few days ago, he said that you were looking at land in Claiborne and perhaps, De Soto. I would like very much to know what you have seen. I suppose from your looking else where that you & Mr. Caldwell could not trade. Perhaps you can do better in Claiborne or De Soto but I do know where you can do better in Bossier. The principal recommendation is the amount of open land. Settling in the woods is a tedious and laborious business and it is said by some that a man had better pay five dollars for improved land than one dollar for unimproved.

        David has been here three years and has not more than one third the amount of open land that he should have.

        The condition of things is much better than I expected to find; corn has been selling at 1.25. Mr. Hallum sold one hundred and fifty or two hundred bushels at that price and David has as much as he had this time last year. Pork is selling slowly 5 cts net, the supply is greater than the demand.

        Flour is high, it is selling at six dollars per hundred.

        I had at one time almost concluded to buy land and settle down. I had considerable difficulty in hiring out my negroes and only finished a few days ago. If I could have got a piece of land of the right kind I would have purchased it. I went to look at several pieces valued at from one to six dollars per acre. I must say that Texas has risen in my estimation since last summer. Almost any other state except Texas would have been upon the point of starvation after experiencing the drouth [sic] that prevailed here last summer.

        I have a piece of land in view adjoining Davids, that I think of buying, although it is in the woods. You own part of it, it is the flat hickory land we rode through. I hired Rob and Mary, Sue and Henry to Dr. Caldwell for $115.00 and Gabe May & children to Mr. Wren for $300.00 to be paid in corn at 75 cts per bushel. Politics are running high and secession is the order of the day. The people of this county are almost unanimous in favor of it.

        David has not finished picking cotton--has a bale or so to pick. I do not know what I will do this year. Let me hear from you as soon as possible.

Your Affectionate Brother

John R. Milling


        [Business, Politics]

New Orleans La. May 8th 1861

Bro William

        I received your favour of the 30th ult--came duly to hand by the W Boston the Boat on which I ship your goods at the same rate of freight as Louis D'or. I have closed bills and had parties send us as you see. I wrote you on Saturday last giving you some of my views. I stated that I had ceased to make further purchases on Saturday. I was quite sick and kept my bed on Monday during the entire day. On yesterday morning, learning that the W Boston was going to the Bluffs, I finished the purchases for you to day. You will see that I have purchased a good large stock & [unclear] . I can say more than any one else, but I thought this about it[:] you can sell those goods at a good profit to good and responsible planters with a certainty that you could at least get cotton if nothing else. I have not gone extravagantly into anything but purchased only the necessities of life. I purchased bacon sides instead of pork as I always could make more money on sides.. now take my advice & hang up in the smoke house or interrogate our friend N M Marks to know how they will keep the best, & hide two of the casks as soon [as] you get them, exhibiting our cask, six bags coffee in [the] grocery room. Also an assortment of essentials for fall use. Keep them back for Fall to be offered in August, the russets the same way. You must ask 2$ for russets--Margery informed me that they actually refused 1.50 per pound cash for all their russets[.] There is no telling when they will get any more so you can get as easily 2$ as 1.50 besides you will have to pay 2$ for the next if you get them at all. I only send you 4 cases [unclear] & hope you have at least 2 cases at home. What the planters will do I know not. You see I purchased for you some at Frost & Co. I did not purchase many clothing from the fact there is now here the volunteers on breaking the assortment. I thought I might be able to get you some in the Fall. You see that everything is dear although I purchased them at low figures and even lower than most persons. You will have to place your figures accordingly & be sure that you will get your money when you do sell. When a party comes along with the money as is often the case & you find you can get the money for all you sell just tell them you have a little bacon but hold out the Idea that it is a favor to let them have it at a sound price. By piece meal you can let your bacon, hams, molasses, coffee, etc. go for their accommodation. I would not be surprised at coffee going to 20 [cents] here if there is a blockade as is threatened. Powder will go to 15 or 20 [cents] by the keg, so don't hurry off your powder. You see that I pay cash for all groceries & we expect you to replace the money. Goodrich bill you can remit to him or I will pay him. Everything in the grocery line is strictly cash, not over two nor three days credit as usual. Such times you never saw. I used our funds knowing that we could do it for your benefit & you will see that I have done as much for your house as I would have done for myself & perhaps more, as I am here and you there & you can collect & make remittances. I have just settled all bills by note except W. A. Harvey & Co. They had enclosed invoice in Box with blank Note which you will sign and return to them. I assigned W. M. Santell & Co. per G. W. Linton. I am truly anxious that you should please the people at the same time I would like that you sell as little as you can help, only for cash. I sent you bbl. Flour at 4 3/4 as you will see & hope you will be pleased with it. You ought to sell it for 8 1/2 or 9. I send D. W. Harris supplies. His order came during my absence and Prather not knowing the Judge, did not send them. That is I send all but 100 yards [unclear] which he can purchase of you. Sell your [unclear] at 15 [cents]. You can put up the price of your goods & tell them how it is. There is no assortment of goods here now & getting worse daily. If Judge Harris has procured his goods elsewhere, you can take them & we will charge them to you. The cotton marked D. W. Harris was shipped to account of G. W. & Bro. I told Prather it was useless for him to acknowledge. Rest of funds brought by me, recollect I took out 100$ G.W. & Bro. Try & make a plausible excuse & collect from J. L. C. Graham what is due, if possible, as every dollar counts. I sent 1 pair pumps No 10 from Frost & Co. They are for Cherry as she says she can get none large enough. Write soon. Give my respect to all.

Your Bro.

G. W. Lintell

PS Say to Capt. that he must not go with the Volunteer Company as brother James & J. H. [Mitten] has volunteered. That two at a time is enough. We can go at future periods if necessary. This would be too much of a good thing. 1/2 stay and 1/2 go. I do not know when they will get off but I assure you they are better off there drilling than to be as many a [unclear] in our city. Besides the governor does not want them until called for.

        [Agriculture, Politics]

Louisiana June 8th 1861

Dr L S Milling
Dear Friend

        As you will not wright [sic] to me I will scratch you a few lines to let you know your family here are all well, or nearly so, two or three of your negroes have been sick with the fever, but they are nearly strait [sic] again. The country is generally healthy. My shoulder has done tolerable well, but the Doctor still has me tide [sic] up yet, he says he will let me loose next Wednesday, which will be six weeks. The bone has grone [sic] together but my arm is very weak. Enough about broken bones and sickness, now for the crops. I can say we have a beautiful prospect for Corn. We have had splendid seasons since you left & the ground at this time is almost too wet to plough. On the river the Corn is maid [sic], your Corn is very good, except your yellow Yanky [sic] which is very small, tho I believe it will make a pretty fair crop. Your white Yanky is much better than the yellow. Shackelford or I will finish ploughing your corn today. I believe we will make Corn in this country this year, so far as I have heard the Corn crops is good. But the Cotton crop is as poor as I have seen for this time of year, some places it looks like it would make nothing. Shackelford sold me your Cotton Crop yesterday for six bits. Since you left we have had a great many cold nights & the lice commenced on the cotton, some places they have eaten it all up. I haven't been over all of your crop, but I have been in the Andrews field & your cotton looks very sorry, the stand is badly injured, some places there is nothing but the stems left. Old land is a great deal worse than fresh land. Shackelford says the Palmer field is not quite as bad as the Andrews field. We have had some pretty hot weather and [warm rains] lately, & Cotton is beginning to gro [sic] a little, but it is but very little longer than when you left.

        There was a great excitement hear [sic] a few days ago, we received dispatches from Little Rock Ark that Montgomery with eleven thousand men was within 40 miles of the place marching South reaping destruction as he went. Every body was very much excited. Capt Tandoloh ordered out his company & every body else that would go, you ought to have seen them (we have no publick [sic] arms) all the old shot guns & rifles pistols & Bowie Knives was raked up in the country & each man had to cary [sic] 4 days cooked provision & 1/2 bu Corn. You ought to have seen them, about three hundred in number on the best horses & mules they could get & (you know none of them was of the best a year like this) with them provisions in bags & coarse clothing on. Every man looked determined & looked as if he thought war had commenced, when they all met to gather & was ready to march news came that it was a false alarm & nothing of it. Some of them was very mad & swore if they could find out the man that put out the false reports they would put him to death. When you left hear [sic] Capt Randolph & Y Hughes had gone to the City to get our Company removed. The Governor received us but said we must stay at home & drill until he needs us, which we have done all except me & I have not been able. Butler's Company had gone when you left, I believe. The Governor received them & sent them about 75 miles above New Orleans to camp & drill, the Governor then turned them over to the Confederate States, but President Davis sent him word he did not want any more twelve month volunteers, but wanted them for the war. That created great confusion in Camp & several Companies disbanded, Butlers Company among the rest, they are all home except Butler & 3 others & I expect they have gone to Virginia. The Governor then issued his proclamation caling [sic] on all companies to volunteer for the war & if they would not do so that to disband & return their arms if they had any. Several Companies broke up, Capt Randolph called upon his Company to know what they would do, & eighty of us volunteered for the war. I think we will have one hundred or more when we go to start, some of the fellows could not dance to the musick [sic] & backed out. We dispached [sic] a messenger to the Governor to get received & to know where he wanted us to go, & he will get back on Monday, & I expect we will leave in a few days. I am not able to do any thing yet, but will go with the Company & stay in camp until I am fit for service.

        I have been looking for a letter from you for several days but have received none yet. Shackelford is getting along very well with the negroes & Crops so far as I can learn, he has had some grass but is nearly through with it now. Tell Jack Gladny if you see him his folks is all well & is getting along with his Crop very well. I will wright [sic] to him in a few days. I would have wrote to you before this time but have been wating [sic] to hear from you first, I have not received a word from [So Ca] since you left.

        Wright when you can & if I am not hear [sic] I will try to get them sent to me. I will close this badly wrote and spelt letter, you will excuse me, for the excitement is so great that I canot [sic] from being so myself

Your True Friend

B. C. Rosborough


        [Disease, Agriculture]

Mill View Fairfield dist SC 17th April 1863

My Dear Son

        Your long and interesting letter of the 14th ulto has been received two days ago, through which I as well as the members of the family were much gratified to hear from you again, being such a long interval, since we had that pleasure. We had various conjectures, as to your location, whether in the army or at home, however these uncertain conjectures have been dissipated on the weight of your letter. We were all still more anxious to hear something of David, as the last uncertain account was, he was sick and at the Hospital, however, we are glad his health is improved, and again able for duty. If it were possible he could be releised [sic] from his present Situation, it no doubt would be very gratifying to him, and once more with his family. Substitutes are in demand here, Robert A. Henon gave old Dick Lewis twelve hundred dollars all paid down besides a bounty of fifty dollars &c Joe Lewis Dick's son lost his right arm last summer, and is now at home. The news of the family (Thank God) is as good as we could reasonably expect. We can report all tolerably well with the exception of some of the negroes, the worst case is Samantha at Buckhead who has been suffering from [senafulous] disease since August last and seems not much improvement yet; it dries up occasionally, and then breaks out again and runs, covered from her breast to her ankles, arms, &c. Physicians seem not to understand it, or determine what it is, poison oak, [unclear] &c. the other diseases incident to all families. Margaret has commenced teaching in the old school house at the cross roads, male teachers being scarce. William wrote to you some time since, which I presume you are in receipt of before this reaches you. John was home on furlough some weeks ago, and in the meantime paid a visit to Mary; found all well. He has returned to the company again, his health very much better than it was, he is now 2nd Lieut. in the company. We receive letters from Tho every few weeks, he stands camp life pretty well, no sickness except cold occasionally. Rus was wounded in the thigh, it is well and he returned to duty. Of crops much cannot be said, about thirty nine (39) bales of cotton on all the places, 18 at B. H. 11 at J. Creek 10 at home, of which only two bales has been sold at Spartanburg in exchange for cloth hemp & nails. The area of corn planting was more extended than usual in order to meet the expected demand, but I made less at home by thirty loads than year before; not much better at Buckhead, the drought catching the crop too soon, however, there will [be] enough for home consumption with a little to spare. On Jackson's Creek somewhat better, and Thomas's part will be more than necessary to use. Of my own part there, I have to feed the Hogs which consume a good deal. Government agents are seising [sic] the corn over what is necessary for consumption, leaving a surplus for the neighborhood wants. They are going for $2.50 per Bushel delivered at the nearest Depo [sic] & furnishing bags, some are under the impression it will bring four or five dollars before summer is over, it is now that price in N C, and agents are buying for that portion of the Country where Govt. Agents leave any. It would be wrong in you to dispose of your cotton; the rates you mention hold on, it will do better. It is worth selling in Winnsboro at 40 cts and many holding on at the figure expecting 50 cts soon. Bagging scarce at 2 1/4 per [unclear] none in market. Sugar $1 1/4 per pound, the meanest kind. Molasses $6 per Gal. Coffee out of the question, [Tea] $10 per pound. Salt $30 per bush. Cloth & Shoes what price they think proper to ask. Negroes from $2500 to 1500 for ordinary hands, Mules and horses from $500 to 1000 per head. Those are a few of the current prices, other things in proportion. Halls balance paid you bond to Lignard $50.60 minus. Mary Boyd has said little about her debt. She is under the impression debt cannot be canceled soon, her & William owe me pretty smart accounts [as] the matter stands; she spoke to William's father of crediting your note with what they owe me, and if they again press it, I will have [it] done as a payment on the note. I omitted to mention my wheat crop was pretty good but made rather a bad use of it, being absent in Richmond during the cutting season and soon after I got home & housed, the Mill-dam broke three times in sucession [sic] , the consequence was the wheat was left unthrashed and the weavils injured very much. I made enough meat to do & some little to spare, and preparing for another year by feeding the Hogs well, as bacon is now worth $105 per pound, flour $20 per bag 100 pounds. Several deaths lately and some unexpected. Cranky Jas Robertson & wife died in a week of each other. [unclear] Gladney since he came home & the old man is sick & I think will hardly get well again. John Bell of Little River came to his death quite unexpected & sudden last Thursday evening. It seems Dr. Jas & Dr. N. Martin & Dr. Turner called at the gate, and John Bell came forward and catched the whip or switch out of Dr. Jas Martin's hand and got off his horse and a tussle ensued between him and Bell in sport. Bell felt his head being injured in some way, but never spoke or made any signs of life, and died that night a few hours after the fatal accident. My sheet is about full, and what shall I say more. William is about home and has his furlough [ ] occasionally, he does not seem to get perfectly well, can stand but little fatigue, his eyes trouble him much. So much so that he reads little in order to save them; he consulted Dr. [Chisilom] when last in Columbia, he recommended the blue stone like he has been using it, and in addition he gave him a wash, but I do not see much improvement.

        The season is quite unfavorable for planting, more rain than usual accompanied with cold winds. The Legislature has had a [pro re nata?] meeting and have cut down the planting of cotton to one acre to the field hand, their first act at the regular session was three acres to the hand and prepared for that amount but now to one acre with a heavy penalty on those that exceed that amount. Some have planted the three acres and say they will not hall [sic] in, but the penalty is I understand (but have not seen it yet) they will not be allowed to gather it, besides paying a fine. William Hamilton Archy's brother died in Richmond in Fby last, part of his chattel property was sold last Wednesday at his old home which brought tall prices, his Negroes on the 20th in Winnsboro. John Rabb G Rabb's son was killed near Richmond one of the Seven Days fight. John Delaney was killed and Jesse severely wounded but is home & better and a discharge, he is to [be] married the 23rd Inst a Miss Dawkins of Monticello, Willie is to be one of his attendants. You are aware perhaps James Matthews was killed at the same time John Rabb was. James Rabb was quite sick on the coast hardly expected to recover but is now convalescent. I have Saml Mcreigh for a Miller now, the one who was at Douglas's Mill a year ago. I have to attend at home & on Jackson's Creek, having no white person on the latter place, so far the Negroes are doing pretty well. I had to send two hands for to work on the coast defenses in the fall, but to the last call have sent no one, it was one of Thms's hands if any to go. I thought he being so long there might excuse him. Of the news about the enemy you are as well posted as I am, on the 7th they attacked Fort Sumter, Moultrie and Morris Island with little success, one of their best vessels being sunk & others injured they have withdrawn. I hope it will always be so. I close with another slip. With my best prayer find you present & eternal.

Your aff. father


        [Morale, Agriculture, Homefront]

Mill View Fairfield Dist SC 26th Feby 1864

My Dear Son

        "It is now over a year since I attempted to write you, and now it may be very uncertain whether you will receive it, or come to hand. We have abundant reason to thank God our lives have been spared thus far; altho [sic] numbers around us have been called from time to eternity, not only by this cruel and [unclear] war, but also from the domestic circle. Notwithstanding our white family been spared, there have been several deaths among the Negroes, Bristo, Dave, Old Bob and another old man by name of Deme, he was one [of] a family I bought of Mrs C, Means some years ago. You have been informed of the severe wound Willie received at the Battle of Seven Pines near Richmond a year past in May last. His wound healed up well but he can undergo very little labour or much fatigue. At present he is engaged as a government agent receiving corn or tax in kind at Yonguesville Fairfield dist SC. Rus lost his right leg at the Battle of Chickamauga Tenn, amputated near his body; the wound has pretty well closed up, and he enjoyes good health and gets about on his crutches pretty well, and now occasionally on horse-back. John is in Longstreet's corps Tenn. I understand today near Knoxville his health is good at present and has again re-enlisted for the war, altho quite tired of infantry service, and speaks of changing. By a letter from James several months ago, he stated you had been home to see your family (which I hope you found well) that your health was better and had returned to duty, being stationed near Shreveport. I was sorry to hear of Isaac's death[.] It was a considerable loss to you, but your own health is better, and your life spared to your family you will have great reason to thank God as you will soon recover from other losses. Many families have lost more or less, and not a few all. William Sloan's three sons were killed in less than a year. Mr Nelson's two sons John and Calvin were died from fever contracted in service, and three of Joseph Gladney's sons, Washington, Raply and John, all by sickness contracted in camps; and the old man himself died about two months ago, sonce that time one negro boy and Old Lady herself on a death-bed now. Mrs Harvey died about two weeks ago, from pnemonia [sic]. One of Hugh Milling's sons named Brown by Scarlet fever. The sword has cut down many since this war commenced, disease of various kinds has done no small share. Thomas remains still on the coast, he has stood camp life exceedingly. I question anyone in ranks has lost less time than he; he has had a few chills but soon passed off. I hope his health will continue good and that he will come out of this unnatural war unhurt.

        The accounts from La seems unfavorable. I fear for the safety of James and his property but hope he has taken the precaution to have his negroes removed at least into Texas so that they will [be] at a greater distance from the enemy. It is anticipated by many that this spring campaign will terminate the war either way for or against us. I trust and pray to God it may end in our favour, we are certainly the unoffending party, contendig for our rights against an invading and relentless enemy, regardless of the means they use in order to accomplish their hellish and vile ends, unprecedented in the history of any civilized warfare. But why talk thus, they are only instruments in the hands of Providence of inflicting this severe chastisement upon themselves as well as us. We have great reason as a state and people to humble ourselves before God and give thanks that we in a great measure are exempt from the atrocities and cruelties commenced by the enemy on other States they not only invade but nearly passed through. It has been with us confined to the coast thus far altho this is the 219 days they have bombarded Charleston and seems they are not much nearer their purpose than when they commenced.

        Margaret is still at home, she taught school a part of last year and expects to commence this year in a few days. She is fond of it and enjoys good health. Uncle John is still with us he has been very quiet for a good while, longer than for several years back, it may possibly be that it will wear off entirely. The other children are only tolerable. Andy at present confined to bed with severe cold or pluresy. I hope he will soon recover. We who are at home are kept in mind of the war by the continued call for taxes in various ways, and you who are giving your personal services in the field are not exempt if not excused all the taxes they ought to be in part. Altho the taxes pinches close we ought not to complain of giving a part to support the war for what would be the consequence as suppose the enemy conquers us[.] they will take all without asking permission, and many innocent lives besides. The crops about home were light last year. We had an abundance of rain during this season, but scarce just at the period when crops were making. The crop on J. Creek exceedingly light, not even good as at home. At Buckhead it was better, a fair crop of corn. We were restricted in planting cotton last year to one acre to the land. Consequently the cotton is not much spoken of. In all the places made a little over twenty thousand pounds (20,000) but then we will have to keep it on hand not being able to procure bagging. Cotton is selling from 85 to 90 cents per pound. Corn $8 to 10 dollars per bushel. Flour from $50 to 60 dollars per 100, bacon $2 1/2 to 3 dollars per lb. Those are samples of the prices, other things in proportion. I raised enough meat to do us, and sold some hogs besides the Govt takes the tenth."

From your father

David Milling


[Homefront]

        [Homefront]

April 12/61

Dear, Dear Husband,

        I received you letter last week in which you mentioned your visit to Mr Strother's Parish--I do assure you it met with a hearty welcome as it had been a month since I had heard any thing from you--it was mailed the 10th of March and received the fifth of April--I was very glad to hear of no sickness to yourself or the Negroes of any consequence. You seemed very much pleased with your visit down there--Have you any idea of buying? I would much rather you could have found a place in De-Soto that would suit, but do what you think best--John Starke asked if you had visited the country about Black Jack in De-Soto--said he had heard it spoken of very highly. Lands of course would be a higher price than where you spoke of--Pa has no idea or inclination to go any where at present, he is much distressed about Ma's sickness--There is little change since I last wrote--sometimes she is better and then worse. She is certainly much weaker as she had to be carried now from one room to the other. Belle intends leaving for Florida on Monday--John Starke came on last Saturday for her--he says he is getting tired of Florida and St. Augustine too--There is every appearance of war at present--Major Anderson has not surrendered the fort yet, nor does he intend to without orders from the Federal Government--All supplies to the fort have been suspended for the past week--It is reported there are five northern vessels in sight with reinforcements and provisions, Major Anderson says they must eat--General Beauregard at Morris Islands replies, if they do they will have to fight for it, unless the fort is surrendered--One of the companies from Camden was ordered down to Charleston this week--Great excitement prevails there--The last accounts report nothing had been done. The papers report exciting times at Pensacola--Are you very quiet in Louisana? I suppose much the same as the country is here, every body attending to their own business--There was to be a runaway match of some of the country folks last night, I have not heard if they succeeded. Where is Mr. Strother's family? Do they reside in the country or a village? Did you not see them? Is Hart Means there also? Who accompanied you down there? Are your prospects for a crop fine this spring? I hope much better than last year. When you write respecting the laws of Louisiana you had better address your letter to Pa--he says he thinks he asked you to write to him about it, but it may have slipped your memory--Do you still think as much of those lands in Winn Parish--Before you come out this Summer you must make an examination of what things you have there so that we will know what is required when we return--I know what are there are in a bad condition. I am very anxious to see you. Minnie and Jane each send a kiss to Father--include little Johnny also, and accept one from your affectionate wife

Mary W. Milling


        [SC Homefront]

March 20th [1862]

My dear Husband,

        Yours of the 25th of Feb was received a few days ago. It is ever a great pleasure to receive letters from you, but the idea of your entering the service of the war produced painful anxious feelings. Perhaps I am not patriotic enough to be willing to give you up--I do not think your constitution could stand the hardships and exposure of a camp life--You must let your overseer go and you can attend to your business--Should the necessity oblige you to enlist I would rather you were here in your native state than join a company out there unless I was there also--Pa has had a severe attack of Typhoid fever--he is better now though not able to be out of bed yet--If he does not take a relapse I think he will recover now although he is very much reduced and it will take some time for him to regain his strength--There are a great many cases of the same fever on the plantation now, and has been for some time back--one death last Sunday night--a girl of twelve or thirteen years of age called Nelly--daughter of Patrick and Candace. Pa will be very backward with his crop in consequence of so much sickness and rainy weather--

        I do not know what are to become of us--it appears the Yankees will have complete possession of South Carolina before long--The people of Columbia and Charleston are very much afraid of those cities being shelled--John Nelson met with a gentleman on the other side of the river who owned a large plantation and 400 Negroes down on the coast, and of that number but one remained with him--We heard a vessel had entered Charleston loaded with arms--Harry Cantey was taken prisoner at Ft Donelson and is now in Chicago--his trunk was brought home to his mother, and his servant who was sick died shortly after reaching home--Mrs Cantey said she did not think she would have nerve sufficient to bear all that would be brought upon by her that "old Sinner Abe Lincoln"--Pa has not sold any of his cotton yet but says he will be obliged to sell in order to try and get something for the negroes to eat--he does not intend to sell all but only a small portion at the time. His factors wrote to him that since our reverses in the west there was no demand for cotton--but they are not at all accommodating--They wrote that there was neither bacon nor molasses for sale in Charleston--What do you have to pay for Molasses? I thought you would be able to get them cheap out there and could feed the Negroes on them almost altogether--Molasses is selling at from 90 cts to $1 per gallon in Camden--bacon at 30cts--

        Pa has just had brought home a piece of cloth of fifty yards--he is having another piece wove--It is slow work, but with your two wheels you can have some after awhile if you will keep them going pretty steadily--Perhaps you may be rid of that trouble after awhile as some of those large slaveholders on the coast are already--What does Nancy call her baby?

        Our little ones are all well except colds--When I had finished reading your letter, Minnie said, "What did father say about my letter?" The baby grows and continues to behave himself very well--The children often speak of you and ask "When is father coming back again?" Pa is at a loss to know what he will do for provisions for the Negroes--he says he does not know what they will eat besides bread--Times are very gloomy now--

        We cannot know what is before us, except that the independence of the Confederate States will have to be achieved by themselves alone and expect nothing from foreign nations. No good news for us now--I do not care to read the papers. Good bye.

Your affectionate Wife

Mary W Milling


        [Conscription, Homefront]

Jan. 16th 1863

My dear Husband,

        Yours of the 25th Dec. has been received and I hasten to respond--I was expecting that you would be called on again by this last Conscript Act, but as so long a time had elapsed since it was published I was rather in hopes the manufacture of salt would have exempted you from Military duty--But your country has a right to your services and I must not complain. Hundreds of families are left helpless and desolate by this terrible war--I cannot but feel more anxiety concerning you if you are called to the battle-field, but the same over-ruling Providence is there as well in more peaceful abodes--Disease and death are abroad in our land and proves as much if not more fatal than the bullets--Since last Feb. Pa has buried thirteen negroes seven hands among them. The disease is abating on his plantation now and does not appear in so severe a form--Mary did not have that disease, only a common sore mouth--She is now entirely well. Mr Mickle has been very unfortunate with his negroes--lost several valuable hands--The Confederates have taken up several of his negroes in the West supposed to be trading with the Yankees on the Miss. River--I expect however that he will get them again--They burnt three bales of cotton to be sold to obtain supplies--Mr M will go out there next week--If you should have to go into service would it not be better to try and hire the Negroes out rather than rent a place--How are they to feed and clothe themselves--There are not many that will work unless they are made to--However, they will have to go on somehow--I know you must be troubled and worried, but you seem to be endeavouring to bear it patiently which is the best way, but patience is a difficult virtue to practice sometimes--especially when the Yankee usurpation is considered as the cause of so much distress--We have been very successful against them this Winter for which we should be very thankful--I feel greatly in hopes that peace is not very far distant--With what rapturous delight would peace be hailed by every individual North as well as South--I think it was very well you did not succeed in the purchase of the land you spoke of--There is a great deal of small-pox in the country--but do not think it is spreading fast--The children has [sic] been vaccinated twice both times a failure.

        I have not heard from your father's family lately--not since the news of Lizzie's death. I am in hopes that the fever has not spread--They have had a good share of sickness this winter, but I suppose not more than what He saw best to inflict--The children and myself are well--I hope by this time you are enjoying the same blessing--It is bitter cold to-night--Minnie and Janie speak of you often and wish very much to see you--They talk to John about you and he joins in as though he knew all about you--Jemmy is more backward in walking than John was at his age--How I wish peace was again restored so that we could be together once more--Good-bye--Accept a loving kiss from

Your devoted Wife

Mary W Milling


        [SC Homefront]

Nov 20th 1863

My dear beloved Husband,

        I have just received a letter from you dated Nov. 2nd--Oh! what joy to hear from you once more--But I was rather disappointed in only a letter--I have been flattering myself perhaps you might if possible try and come out this fall--I am so anxious to see you--More than two years--I did not dream of such a thing when you left here or I would never have staid [sic] behind--I could hear of no one from this part of the country crossing the Miss. River--I concluded my only chance of hearing from you was through brother John when some of the volunteers West of the Miss. River were returning home on furlough--You cannot imagine half my joy on the reception of your letter--but it was not half long enough--The children and myself have and do still enjoy very good health--The children have all grown a great deal--Minnie and Janie can both read very well--You would be surprised to hear them--They spell and cipher a little--John grows very fast and has on pants this Winter--Jemmy is backward about talking--can say but few words--He calls out Pa whenever he sees his grandfather--I dislike very much the little fellow not knowing or even seeing his Pa--but I suppose it cannot be otherwise now--The family say he is very much like your father--Minnie and Janie often aask about you and so does John--When they heard I had a letter from you Minnie and Janie said, Do Mother read to us what Father says--Many questions were asked about you--I have them pretty well supplied with clothes the great difficulty is shoes--I suppose Pa will supply them as Mr Mickle and himself are having leather tanned of which to make shoes--The merchants in Camden will not sell leather in small quantity--it commands $12 a pound--The children are all on their bare feet now, but we have had but few days of very cold weather and they do not seem to mind it--We have had a very dry fall, no rain since wheat has been sowed--Pa is afraid it will not come up well--I believe planters generally has [sic] made very good crops of corn and wheat--but there will be a great deal of suffering among the poor--and then the government comes in for its tenth of all the produce that it made--Very little cotton in the country--Mr Mickle made a short crop of corn--bought in his tenth--Pa has done very well in the way of meat--giving only a little at the time--I think he has 70 or 80 hogs to kill this Winter--Did you not make corn enough--and do you not raise your own meat? Do your weavers improve any--Pa is having a loom made and then I am going to learn to put in cloth and weave it--I spun a little last summer. You will be pained to learn the sad accident Russ met with at the Battle of Chickamauga--he was struck with a mini ball above the knee and amputation was deemed necessary--his right limb has been amputated within a few inches of his body--he also lost the first joint of the middle finger of his right hand and received a slight wound on his thumb --Poor Russ, I was so sorry when I heard it--The last letter from Margaret he was doing quite well and was cheerful--he was carried home as soon as he was able to stand the trip--John was not engaged, his Brigade did not reach there until after the engagement was over--he was at home about ten days when Russ was brought on--The last letter from Margaret all were well except your Mother--I suppose her indisposition caused from trouble, anxiety and nursing--I did not get up there last summer--perhaps may go this winter--Charleston still holds out against all the assaults of the enemy--They are still shelling--sometimes the city and then Ft Sumter--I sincerely trust all their endeavors to take the city will be fruitless--It is believed that the Yankees are preparing for a grand land attack--I believe all is quiet at present in Tenn.--I see by the papers that Knoxville is in possession of our forces--Sometimes things look very gloomy but persons are generally hopeful. If you were only here or where I could hear from you, or if I was there with you I know I would be better satisfied--How I wish you never had gone there--I do not think I would put the Negroes in the service of the government further than I was obliged to--I do not think they treat them kindly--Pa has lost two and Mr Mickle two in Government service. Wylie his carpenter died this fall a few days after he reached home from a disease contracted while at work on the fortifications at Charleston--Can you not hire them out--It is very difficult to know what to do with them now they are more an expense than profit--This State I expect will be filled with them--Persons are constantly bringing them in from the Western States--Numbers have already been brought here--More than a hundred head are on this place of Mr Vaughn's--I expect Mr Mickle's in the West are scattered--one of them came home last Summer--him and another was hired in Jackson--The other has never been heard of--Would that you were on this side of the Miss. River but wishes are vain and foolish--I hope all will come out right at last--

        Belle and Mr Starke are still in Georgia and doing very well--Sister has sent Rebecca to the female college in Columbia--She will send the three eldest boys to Camden in January--Where is cousin David? It must have been quite a treat having him come and stay several weeks with you--I expect you would not object to a sick furlough to have him come and stay with you again--I have not heard yet any thing from your Father of the bond that you sent on. Perhaps he has not received it yet--I know that he will attend to it--I received from him last Summer fifty dollars $50 at your request though I was not in any immediate need of it--I still had a part of the two hundred dollars you sent me this fall a year ago--I buy nothing but what I am obliged to as every thing is held at such enormous prices--I hope we will be successful and not lose any of your Negroes with the sore throat--I should be so glad to see them all again--Tell them all how-dye for me--Sally and Emeline are well and send a heap of how-dyes to all of them--Have you been in service in the state yet? We heard that Kirby Smith was at Shreveport with 3300 men--Oh! my dear dear husband when shall I ever see you again--If you should get sick or wounded who will care for you--It is very distressing when I think of it--but I trust the same kind of Providence will still be over you to protect and preserve you and bring you back to us again--Minnie, Janie and John says tell Father we send him a heap of kisses--Janie says tell Father little Bud sends him a kiss too--They are all asleep now--Oh! that we could be as free from care and sorrow as a little child. Be sure and write whenever an opportunity offers--I will do the same--Accept much love and many, many kisses from your loving wife

Mary W Milling


        [SC Homefront]

Feb 16th 1864

My Dear husband,

        Hearing that the government has communication with the Trans-Mississippi department by way of Meridian I have concluded to make trial of it --Perhaps I may hear something from you--Several persons in Longtown have heard from their friends in La. through that channel--How much I regret your ever going West, or that I had gone with you when you were out here last--It is a source of much grief that the children have grown so large with little or no knowledge of their father--I sometimes fear they will lack that affection that is due to a parent although Minnie and Janie speak of you quite often--I feel more and more the want of a home for them as they are growing so fast, but things are unavoidable now and I suppose I will have to be patient--but I do wish it could have been otherwise--There seems no end to look forward to, to this war--Those who are unsettled now will be likely to be so, who can tell how long? I do get so impatient sometimes. I wish the South had given up the Negroes to Old Abe rather than have so much trouble and distress. I did not go up to your father's last fall--Willie was appointed an agent to the government and could not come over. Your father sent the bond down to me Christmas by a servant--I have not heard from there very lately--Old Mr. Tom Robertson died last month--his widow still remains at the place--

        Belle is here with her two children--her family will be increased before a great while--Mr Starke has all of his negroes at his mother's on the other side of the river--he has not returned from Ga yet--his intention is to get a place for his own negroes and the estate's to remain at his mothers--I would not be surprised if he did not find it a difficult matter to get settled again--

        How do you manage on the plantation about clothes--Do your weavers improve? Some of the Negroes here have learned to spin a right good thread without cards. Have you plenty of provisions or have they been impressed--For the present state of affairs I do not think planters will take that interest in their farms as formerly--Now they have nothing that they can call their own--all property at the disposal of the government--I feel sorry for old people in our Confederacy having so much distress in their old age--The heavy taxes, the disturbed state of the country renders persons generally low-spirited--Gen. Kershaw came home on furlough a short time since, he expressed much surprise at the general despondency which prevailed--said the people were wrong, there was no cause for such gloomy desponding feelings--He said such a thing as despondency was not known in the army--there all was hope and cheerfulness--I have been surprised sometimes at John's letters--his letters are always hopeful and in the best of spirits--I endeavor to write in the same way but I expect I fail sometimes--Is the state of things any better in La. We have understood the planters on the Arkansas River have all gone into Texas--Mrs Dulin is living in Longtown--We have not heard whether Mr Dulin is among the number or not--Martha became tired of teaching Mr Mickle's children and has quit--Rebecca is at the female college in Columbia--the three eldest boys will be sent to Camden this week--They would have gone before this but had to wait until some clothes could be spun and wove for them--It seems so strange that clothes are so hard to get now--Calicoes are from $6 to $9 a yd but there is a Bee Company established in Columbia where things are sold rather more reasonable--but all are high enough in all conscience yet--that store in Ca is called the Bee Hive. It is always such a crowded place, those who have been there say there is not much pleasure in making purchases--We have had a very cold winter--I do hope we will have a good fruit season. Peas are just up--I think we will have plenty of cold weather yet--are you gardening any or will you have to spend your summer in the camp--now that substitutes do not exempt--I wish every thing was back here again--I am afraid Pa will lose his overseer and if he does I do not know what he will do. It is impossible to get one that is worth any thing--Mr Mickle's health is very bad some how--he has been sick all the Winter--We have all enjoyed very good health until a few weeks back--We all had a turn of cold but are all better--There is a kind of influenza that has been going about--The children are all well at this time with the exception of colds--How do you stand it alone so long--I expect you scarcely wish to be troubled with a wife and children again, you have been free so long a time--Minnie and Janie each send a kiss to you and say tell father we want to see him so much--John says tell father I am a big boy--he likes no other name but that of big bud--Goodbye I hope the time is not far distant when we shall meet again--Do write as often as you can my dear, my darling husband. You seemed to be bragging on your good looks--I did not know but by this time your looks were quite silvered over, giving you as I supposed rather a venerable appearance--Good-bye once more--Accept many kisses from

Your affectionate wife

Mary W Milling

Charleston still holds out nobly--I hope the same success may ever attend it from whatever quarter it may be assaulted--Farmers have been again called on for labour--five of Pa's hands will go down next week. He has been unfortunate having lost one each time they have been called for. I expect there will be a tremendous crash when the Spring campaign commences. I hope the summer will decide the contest--Mr Starke came over from Geo. to-day--How are the Negroes and how are they getting on--Do they show any disposition to leave or do they seem satisfied? Tell them all how-dye for me--I wish I could help you with them at such a time as this--I would like very much to see them all again--A kiss to-night--Good night--Your loving wife

Mary W Milling

Should you have to go into the service I think it would be best to box up what things are there and put them in the care of some of your friends--I think it would be best to get someone to stay on the place with the Negroes--even if it was an old man just to overlook things and see how they were going on--and to pay some attention in case of sickness--I have written a long letter. I hope it may reach you.


[Military and Politics]

        [Politics]

To Dr. James S. Milling

--Rocky Mount, La. Jan. 18th 1861

My Dear Husband,

        "Mr. Mickle has not returned from the West yet, but is expected the last of this month. Did that place that you thought of renting suit? I scarcely know what to say. I do not wish to go out there until I know something of the fate of the Southern States--whether we are likely to have a war or not--and besides you must come back to go with me when I do go. I would never think of starting on such a journey with three children and two servants (and they Africans) besides baggage to be taken care of in the company of strangers--although they might be very kind I would not like to put them to so much trouble. I do not see how I am to go now as the baby has to be fed. I hope though that we will get fixed after awhile. Who have you for an overseer, or do you follow that occupation yourself? Have you received any numbers of the Camden Journal? Pa ordered it to be sent to Cousin John Ross and yourself--thinking you would like to know something of the movements of South Carolina. It is believed that nothing but the giving up of Fort Sumter by Col. Anderson will prevent a declaration of war. He was in possession of Fort Moultrie and thinking he would be attacked by the State troops in case of the secession of South Carolina he removed to Fort Sumter without any order from the government as a place of greater safety. A vessel was sent to Charleston to reinforce Col Anderson which was fired into from the State troops stationed at fort Moultrie. There was an understanding between the Governor and President that every thing was to be conducted with mildness or in such a manner as not to provoke a war. Charleston I expect is in a constant state of excitement. Minnie says I must tell you to come and sleep with her--Janie snores a great deal--and Minnie says she makes so much noise she cannot sleep--says I must tell you how-dye [sic] for her." "Tell the negroes how-dye--Has there been much sickness among them?" Write very soon and often to your affectionate wife

Mary W Milling

P. S. Father says he would advise you not to make any purchases while the States are in such a disturbed condition--he says rent until times become more favourable. I have been suffering a great deal of late with toothache, the least of all complaints to meet with sympathy, but I have a dear kind and sympathetic friend in my dear husband. Write very soon. Your affectionate wife MWM

        [Politics]

To: Dr. James S. Milling--Collinsburgh, La.

Bairds-Hill [SC] March 20th/61

My dear Husband,

        As letters to these Western States are so long on the road I expect by the time this reached you you will think that you ought again to have some intelligence of the little ones and myself. We are all well at this time and in good health. I hope the same blessing is extended by the good hand of Providence over you.

        "Have you had much cold weather in Louisiana this spring? Vegetables appear to be more forward there than here. are you far advanced in your crop business? I was very sorry to hear that you had occasion to use hard means with Fortune [a slave] for I always believed him to be a good servant--Perhaps a sharp reprimand would have had as good if not better effect on him.

        "Although I am very anxious to see you I do not wish you to hurry back but examine those places that you think you will be pleased with. When we go out next fall I would prefer not living on a rented place long, if you could do well in the purchase of one. Now is the time to travel about and look for you know I am not very fond of staying alone. I thought Pa had sent you the Journal but he said he only sent that number in which was the Ordnance of Secession. I need not have sent the sermon as you had seen it before. Political matters here are quiet--It was thought Major Anderson would have surrendered Fort Sumter last week. No very late accounts unless by Telegraph to-day. We heard the booming of the canon this evening--I suppose a welcome to some good news. John Starke was greatly incensed against the Gov. of Florida because he did not order the forts in the southern part of the State to be taken at once which he said could have been done very easily--Key West in particular has the strongest fortress in the South--but now he said they are strongly fortified by United States Troops."

Your affectionate wife

Mary W. Milling
Holly Springs Marshall County Miss


        [Military]

March 3rd 1862

Mr. W. M. Sentell

Dear Cousin:

        After this I will be obliged to curtail writing to any of my friends as soon as I receive their letters although it is with much reluctance to do it. As nothing but specie will be received for postage & that is not to be had in this portion of the country. Therefore you may not hear from me as often as heretofore but I shall endeavor to keep up a correspondence with you as you seem to be the only member of the family that takes any part in corresponding with any of our family. I am glad to say that there is one that takes some interest in keeping up a correspondence & to be so punctual as you have been & hope we may continue to hear from you as long as life last. There has been a great deal of excitement prevailing through the country since the battle of Fort Donelson. The Yankees may think they will conquer us but they will find it worse than they expected. There will be a great deal of blood spilt before the succeed. There has been another call for more troops from this state. Two companies expect to camp at Holly Springs this week. If we could get more arms a good many more would leave but the arms are not to be had. I don't know where arms are to come from for those that will leave in a few days. All the guns have been given up in the country that would do. It is reported that Nashville has been given up to the enemy as there was nothing to prevent them from coming up the river from Fort Donelson. The citizens are moving out all property that can be moved. Most all the citizens have moved out of the city. The true situation is not known as all communications have been stopped & the telegraph wires cut & but few papers are allowed to be printed. It is thought it was done by Jeff Davis. Memphis seems to be the next place for the enemy to get in their possession. All the machinery have been moved to Columbus, Miss. The citizens are moving to their farms that have any to go to. The prisoners that was taken at Fort Donelson were sent to the North. When they started off singing Dixie & hollering hura for the Southern Confederacy, at one time the guards could do nothing with them. I do hope they will shout out of their chains like Thomas did last fall. I was sorry to hear that it has been so dry in your country. We have been blessed with rain so far. Once last week & the week before it looked like we were going to be washed away. I don't think the creeks were ever so high. It has been a very warm winter, the warmest that has been for five or six years. The farmers has not commenced planting anything yet. Pa don't intend to plant more than 15 acres in cotton this spring. There will not be half the cotton this year that was last year.

        We received a letter from Bro William last week. He was well & enjoying himself. He weighs 165 lbs. He will enlist for the war. About half this company has enlisted. I think he will be home in a month if he enlists, on a furlough. There was five balloons up there one day before noon. I have not heard from Cousin Bettie in some time, all well the last account. What has become of Mr. Young and family? We have written several times to them & Aunt Sallie but can't hear from them. Pa wrote to Cousin John a month or two ago about [unclear] estate but has not heard from him. Where is his post office as he has moved. All civil suits have been laid aside until the war closes. When you write Sammie give him my best respects & tell Sam I am very much to him for being so sparing of his labor, paper & ink. These lines leave all well as usual. Pa's health was worse this winter, than it was last spring. He is better for the last few days, he is up and about the most of the time. I am of the same notion you are on the subject of matrimony. It is not subject to be thought of these war times. I hope to hear from you soon. Good bye Cousin.

Affectionately

L. E. Gardner


        [Business, Politics]

New Orleans La. May 8th 1861

Bro William

        I received your favour of the 30th ult--came duly to hand by the W Boston the Boat on which I ship your goods at the same rate of freight as Louis D'or. I have closed bills and had parties send us as you see. I wrote you on Saturday last giving you some of my views. I stated that I had ceased to make further purchases on Saturday. I was quite sick and kept my bed on Monday during the entire day. On yesterday morning, learning that the W Boston was going to the Bluffs, I finished the purchases for you to day. You will see that I have purchased a good large stock & [unclear] . I can say more than any one else, but I thought this about it[:] you can sell those goods at a good profit to good and responsible planters with a certainty that you could at least get cotton if nothing else. I have not gone extravagantly into anything but purchased only the necessities of life. I purchased bacon sides instead of pork as I always could make more money on sides.. now take my advice & hang up in the smoke house or interrogate our friend N M Marks to know how they will keep the best, & hide two of the casks as soon [as] you get them, exhibiting our cask, six bags coffee in [the] grocery room. Also an assortment of essentials for fall use. Keep them back for Fall to be offered in August, the russets the same way. You must ask 2$ for russets--Margery informed me that they actually refused 1.50 per pound cash for all their russets[.] There is no telling when they will get any more so you can get as easily 2$ as 1.50 besides you will have to pay 2$ for the next if you get them at all. I only send you 4 cases [unclear] & hope you have at least 2 cases at home. What the planters will do I know not. You see I purchased for you some at Frost & Co. I did not purchase many clothing from the fact there is now here the volunteers on breaking the assortment. I thought I might be able to get you some in the Fall. You see that everything is dear although I purchased them at low figures and even lower than most persons. You will have to place your figures accordingly & be sure that you will get your money when you do sell. When a party comes along with the money as is often the case & you find you can get the money for all you sell just tell them you have a little bacon but hold out the Idea that it is a favor to let them have it at a sound price. By piece meal you can let your bacon, hams, molasses, coffee, etc. go for their accommodation. I would not be surprised at coffee going to 20 [cents] here if there is a blockade as is threatened. Powder will go to 15 or 20 [cents] by the keg, so don't hurry off your powder. You see that I pay cash for all groceries & we expect you to replace the money. Goodrich bill you can remit to him or I will pay him. Everything in the grocery line is strictly cash, not over two nor three days credit as usual. Such times you never saw. I used our funds knowing that we could do it for your benefit & you will see that I have done as much for your house as I would have done for myself & perhaps more, as I am here and you there & you can collect & make remittances. I have just settled all bills by note except W. A. Harvey & Co. They had enclosed invoice in Box with blank Note which you will sign and return to them. I assigned W. M. Santell & Co. per G. W. Linton. I am truly anxious that you should please the people at the same time I would like that you sell as little as you can help, only for cash. I sent you bbl. Flour at 4 3/4 as you will see & hope you will be pleased with it. You ought to sell it for 8 1/2 or 9. I send D. W. Harris supplies. His order came during my absence and Prather not knowing the Judge, did not send them. That is I send all but 100 yards [unclear] which he can purchase of you. Sell your [unclear] at 15 [cents]. You can put up the price of your goods & tell them how it is. There is no assortment of goods here now & getting worse daily. If Judge Harris has procured his goods elsewhere, you can take them & we will charge them to you. The cotton marked D. W. Harris was shipped to account of G. W. & Bro. I told Prather it was useless for him to acknowledge. Rest of funds brought by me, recollect I took out 100$ G.W. & Bro. Try & make a plausible excuse & collect from J. L. C. Graham what is due, if possible, as every dollar counts. I sent 1 pair pumps No 10 from Frost & Co. They are for Cherry as she says she can get none large enough. Write soon. Give my respect to all.

Your Bro.

G. W. Lintell

PS Say to Capt. that he must not go with the Volunteer Company as brother James & J. H. [Mitten] has volunteered. That two at a time is enough. We can go at future periods if necessary. This would be too much of a good thing. 1/2 stay and 1/2 go. I do not know when they will get off but I assure you they are better off there drilling than to be as many a [unclear] in our city. Besides the governor does not want them until called for.

        [Agriculture, Politics]

Louisiana June 8th 1861

Dr L S Milling
Dear Friend

        As you will not wright [sic] to me I will scratch you a few lines to let you know your family here are all well, or nearly so, two or three of your negroes have been sick with the fever, but they are nearly strait [sic] again. The country is generally healthy. My shoulder has done tolerable well, but the Doctor still has me tide [sic] up yet, he says he will let me loose next Wednesday, which will be six weeks. The bone has grone [sic] together but my arm is very weak. Enough about broken bones and sickness, now for the crops. I can say we have a beautiful prospect for Corn. We have had splendid seasons since you left & the ground at this time is almost too wet to plough. On the river the Corn is maid [sic], your Corn is very good, except your yellow Yanky [sic] which is very small, tho I believe it will make a pretty fair crop. Your white Yanky is much better than the yellow. Shackelford or I will finish ploughing your corn today. I believe we will make Corn in this country this year, so far as I have heard the Corn crops is good. But the Cotton crop is as poor as I have seen for this time of year, some places it looks like it would make nothing. Shackelford sold me your Cotton Crop yesterday for six bits. Since you left we have had a great many cold nights & the lice commenced on the cotton, some places they have eaten it all up. I haven't been over all of your crop, but I have been in the Andrews field & your cotton looks very sorry, the stand is badly injured, some places there is nothing but the stems left. Old land is a great deal worse than fresh land. Shackelford says the Palmer field is not quite as bad as the Andrews field. We have had some pretty hot weather and [warm rains] lately, & Cotton is beginning to gro [sic] a little, but it is but very little longer than when you left.

        There was a great excitement hear [sic] a few days ago, we received dispatches from Little Rock Ark that Montgomery with eleven thousand men was within 40 miles of the place marching South reaping destruction as he went. Every body was very much excited. Capt Tandoloh ordered out his company & every body else that would go, you ought to have seen them (we have no publick [sic] arms) all the old shot guns & rifles pistols & Bowie Knives was raked up in the country & each man had to cary [sic] 4 days cooked provision & 1/2 bu Corn. You ought to have seen them, about three hundred in number on the best horses & mules they could get & (you know none of them was of the best a year like this) with them provisions in bags & coarse clothing on. Every man looked determined & looked as if he thought war had commenced, when they all met to gather & was ready to march news came that it was a false alarm & nothing of it. Some of them was very mad & swore if they could find out the man that put out the false reports they would put him to death. When you left hear [sic] Capt Randolph & Y Hughes had gone to the City to get our Company removed. The Governor received us but said we must stay at home & drill until he needs us, which we have done all except me & I have not been able. Butler's Company had gone when you left, I believe. The Governor received them & sent them about 75 miles above New Orleans to camp & drill, the Governor then turned them over to the Confederate States, but President Davis sent him word he did not want any more twelve month volunteers, but wanted them for the war. That created great confusion in Camp & several Companies disbanded, Butlers Company among the rest, they are all home except Butler & 3 others & I expect they have gone to Virginia. The Governor then issued his proclamation caling [sic] on all companies to volunteer for the war & if they would not do so that to disband & return their arms if they had any. Several Companies broke up, Capt Randolph called upon his Company to know what they would do, & eighty of us volunteered for the war. I think we will have one hundred or more when we go to start, some of the fellows could not dance to the musick [sic] & backed out. We dispached [sic] a messenger to the Governor to get received & to know where he wanted us to go, & he will get back on Monday, & I expect we will leave in a few days. I am not able to do any thing yet, but will go with the Company & stay in camp until I am fit for service.

        I have been looking for a letter from you for several days but have received none yet. Shackelford is getting along very well with the negroes & Crops so far as I can learn, he has had some grass but is nearly through with it now. Tell Jack Gladny if you see him his folks is all well & is getting along with his Crop very well. I will wright [sic] to him in a few days. I would have wrote to you before this time but have been wating [sic] to hear from you first, I have not received a word from [So Ca] since you left.

        Wright when you can & if I am not hear [sic] I will try to get them sent to me. I will close this badly wrote and spelt letter, you will excuse me, for the excitement is so great that I canot [sic] from being so myself

Your True Friend

B. C. Rosborough