25 March 1863: “… I have full permission to marry from Mr. Castin I don’t like to have to beg but when I know it is my own owner from whom I am asking these favors it prompts me to do so…”

Item Description:  Letter, dated 25 March 1863, written by a slave named “Jimmey” working for the DeRosset family in an office in Wilmington, N.C., stating that his owner has given him permission to marry. “Jimmey” is James W. Telfair, Jr. (born in 1837), who later became a reverend at St. Stephen’s A.M.E. Church in Wilmington, N.C.  This information was found in a document on the Telfair House, a historic home in Wilmington, N.C.

Item Citation:  25 March 1863 letter from folder 56, in the DeRosset Family Papers #214Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Item Transcription:

Wilmington N.C. March 25/63
 
My kind + affectionate mistress
I hope these few lines may find you well also Miss Catherine and the rest of the family I received the note you sent me and I have full permission to marry from Mr. Castin I don’t like to have to beg but when I know it is my own owner from whom I am asking these favors it prompts me to do so + therefore I hope Miss Lizzie you will not look upon it hard I want to ask you please mam to send me some money to try to get something deasent to get married in May if nothing happens to prevent the Yankees don’t bother now Miss Lizzie I have an eye to the time I know the times is hard + have bin waiting for this time to pass but the Lord knows best most all my time is taken up at the office + can’t make much tho they are very kind to me at the office give me plenty to eat I can find no fault at all I hope you and all will be able to return home soon in peace + safety I will try + be faithfull to you until you come home again the Reason why I write to you for some money so soon is because I want to look around + see what I can get Aunt Julia + aunt Bella sends their love to all alls well I would of wrote you a longer letter but I have bin making envelopes at the office so late to night that I must close goodnight My Dear mistress May the lord of host be with us and the God of Jacob be our Refuge
 
From your affectionate Servant
Jimmey
 
Miss E A DeRosset
 

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