Item description: Letter, dated 10 January 1864, from Duncan Cameron to his grandfather, Thomas Ruffin. Duncan was a pupil at the Bingham School in Orange County, North Carolina, and writes about how the school nearly closed during the Civil War.
[transcription available below images]
Oaks Orange Co.
Jan. 10th 1864
I will write you a letter to day thanking you for that nice present you gave me. I mean those fine apple trees you gave me. By and by when you are gone those will make me think a great deal about you. How happy it will make me feel to think my dear Grandfather gave them to me. Sam Patterson told me that you staid all night at our house Friday evening. I would of liked very much to have seen you but you know I was learning more here than I would if I had been there. You must not be uneasy about me because I will do my best for you and my parents. I hope I will please them both. If any thing like trying will do I will do it. Mr. Bingham thought he would have to stop the school but he worked so hard trying to get the boys back and get the land lords to keep boarders. I have got to go to some school and some where and I had just as well go here rather. Will you please Aunt Patty to write to me an I will be sure to answer it. Tell them all they have treated me very badly. Tell Nannie she must answer my letter that I write her. Give my love to Uncle Sterling and Uncle Willie. I would like to get a bite of one of your good apples.
Give my love to all all my people. Write soon
Your affect and beloved Grandson
More about this item: Duncan Cameron was the son of Anne Ruffin and Paul Carrington Cameron. The “Mr. Bingham” this letter refers to is likely William Bingham. This letter would have been written in the last year the Bingham School was located in Oaks, North Carolina. Later in 1864, the school moved to the Hillsborough area, where it would become Bingham Military School.