5 October 1864: “not one tear of affection shed at her grave”

Item Description: Letter dated 5 October 1864 written by Eliza Jane Lord DeRosset to her son, Louis Henry.

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Item Citation: From folder 62 in the DeRosset Family Papers (#00214), Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Item Transcription:

Wilmington Oct 5th/64

My precious Son

I wrote you some steamer the day after Marie left in the Lynx but as I fear you have never received a line from me I will endeavor to write by every Steamer hoping an occasional one may arrive at its destination.

No doubt you are one this made glad by the arrival of your little wife and precious little daughter who learned to love us in the two days she spent at home of your childhood. She is a little treasure God grant that you may train her properly and strive if ? and to you to make her meet for for the kingdom of Heaven– You have much more than most men of your age to be thankful for– the merciful restoration of yourself to health once more, and the preservation of your Wife and little one from the dangers of the deep — you have heard who in this from Marie’s life– may your heart be lifted in gratitude to our Heavenly Father for all his mercies to you and yours.

The body of Mr. Greenhow being brought up to me to attend to made me feel as if my heart would burst with gratitude for this preservation of your family– if Marie had been brought in the same way what agony if would have caused you, thank God always– Our ? (or rather many Ladies took charge of the poor women she was carried to the Hospital Chapel and arraged for the grace by kind hands the Ladies never left her, attended the funeral and buried her in a preserved lot near ours- Miss Buie said she was a Roman Catholic- the Priest here buried her and Mrs Hurtley and ? placed the crucifix, and burnt candles around her. I cut off her hair and will keep it for her daughter in case we ever hear from them, she was an elegant woman and not at all changed by death- it was a sad sad sight not one tear of affection shed at her grave what a different termination of all her ambitious schemes-

We have ? and Charlie with us still, they cannot get the house until next Monday– Willie is still here he has taken James McRee’s house, but the Cunningham’s have not moved yet fortunately Lizzie has not come yet and of course he will regret taking that house but he would not listen to advice, there are no gas fixtures in it disappointment No 1 — We will be terribly lonely when they leave, for I do not know when ? will return, she and Alice are very quietly seated at Chapel Hill, say they will remain until they can get some reliable person to take charge of the house, I want to go up but I hate to leave Pa he works so hard and is so tired and poorly when gets home in the evening he wants me by him and then it is such a pleasure to me to be near him, if Mr Brown ever returns I will try and persuade him to go up for a little while– his pulse troubles him to much, it is a terrible feeling this irregularity. I have felt a little of it. I had a letter from Johnnie at ?? he and his family are quite ? and very happy expect to make his ? a perfect model– Uncle Fred has gone up to bring down his family- Mother intends spending some time

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is looking very wretched. I hope this change may benefit her.

We heard a day or two ago of Willie London being badly wounded though the chest just escaping the lung, came out his back shattering his shoulder blade- John R went for him and I hope he is at home on this we have not heard of any other of our boys- hope they are all safe.

Our town is very ? and every body there about out fight in the rally- the report here yesterday was that Petersburg had been evacuated but so far that is not here, we are hoping great things from Georgia Beauregard has taken command out there– I saw ? ? today just from S.C. says the fever is very bad in Charleston he did not venture in the City– Pa invited a McBloom, I think one of ? clerks, to stay with us while here he says there is very little fever in the City, there have been a good many cases at Smith? most of them fatal. We hear Mr Brown is looking remarkably well and enjoying himself hunting ? while Pa’ and Brother are doing all the work– I trust that won’t last long– Please don’t let that precious little baby forget us but talk to her often of Bonnie, God bless you my son. Mother.

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2 Responses to 5 October 1864: “not one tear of affection shed at her grave”

  1. John R . Woodard says:

    Civil War Day By Day
    5 October 1864

    The letter used in this account by Eliza DeRosstt to her son Louis
    Henry refers to Mr. Greenhow in the third paragraph in the typescript. I believe this was MRS Rose O’N Greenhow’s burial preparations and funeral – a well-known individual in Civil War history and Wilmington history. I do not have a copy of her biography on hand to see if this letter was used and correctly identified.

    John R. Woodard (Univ. Archivist Ret. W.F.U.)