Identifier

MSS.6.384

Date

11-1-1861

Subjects

United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865; Peirce, Elizabeth Hannah--Correspondence; United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Women

Notes

8 pages

Transcription

Home, Wednesday eve'g Nov. 1861. Dear Augusta, My baby is just asleep little round, fat, good humoured fellow as he is, it is a relief to see him quiet for the night for he has a great fancy for my nursing in the evening, unless he is sent out of sight, which I do not like to do. We have been only a little while at home from a long day in the woods, gathering nuts, hunting quails, and enjoying the sweet Indian summer weather as much as possible, none more than Elliott himself. You remember well enough I am sure how such days used to pass. Plenty of hurry in the morning, plenty of walking all day, pleasure and fatigue enough , with some nuts and game by way of visible reward, and a great refreshment of spirits, to those of us who do not want dinner and drink coffee in the woods everyday. This is our first picnic for a long time,though we spend as little time indoors as possible. Is the fall- weather so sweet and tempting on your sea-shore, as here at home? That would be so new to us, that we should should like to exchange with you for a little while. Mother too spends as much time as she can in her lot, and Mary drops the painting once a day. I missed a visit from her with her knitting in her hand, to-day. Father has been up the canal for ten days past; the rest of the family spend Sunday afternoon with me, and had a quiet pleasant dinner, which would have been pleasanter if you had been with us. Edward would be glad to see you help eat his birds. He is becoming quite a sportsman, whether too much of a one, I am not sure. It is a matter of experiment with me, and I believe with his father. Country sports against the town. At this season, lessons lose ground a little, but perhaps health and manliness gain. At all events it is all in his father's company and with my goodwill. He seems much pleased to show his game-bag, seven birds and a rabbit, but is so vain as I expected. Enough of my two boys , is it not? The girls may wait til another time, or the quantity would be overwhelming to one who has both of her own, and would find them no novelties in any mood. We have not been spending the last two or three weeks in amusing ourselves, or I should scarcely know how to venture an apology for so long neglecting to answer the letter you wrote so kindly and promptly. But good honest day's works, house-cleaning and the like, have filled the time, and left little for my own or my friends' pleasure, how I can enjoy seeing my house in winter order, and try to catch a few of these flying days , before winter is upon us. I wonder if November ever before saw such a garden as this in Ohio. I regret every day the house I made a month ago in preparing for winter ; for the mignonette and rose geraniums are sweet and the roses are blooming with the fullness and perfume of June, and a brilliant glow, and lasting beauty, such as never crowned a summer day. It is so late that the saffron crowns has faded, and even that curious pale one, about which you accused me of romancing, has finished its bloom, and 'gone back' as the Germans say,to nurse its seeds till spring. Another time.- Just here master Elliott called and I obeyed as usual. Then came two days soap-boiling and house-cleaning, with tired evenings, and no disposition to do anything but listen to the news; so you have been neglected again, and I felt that deserved the reproach in your letter to Mother, which I have just seen. Your good man's letter was received on Friday, and for the little enclosure to me, please give my hearty thanks; it was not only very good of him, but the likeness is very good and very highly valued too. Elizabeth's judgement upon it was asked first, and as she pronounced it to be without doubt Uncle Luther, we all agreed. It was necessary however to explain the shoulder-straps to her, as they were novelty. I believe our children too, would much prefer that he had not been a 'Major', for they miss their cousins constantly, though some of them would like to change places with them for a few days, as their travelling opportunities are very much envied. Your kitchen difficulties are a new call upon our empathies, though the separation, must be the least of them. I can understand why you parted, but how you remained together so long, passes the comprehension of any patience I have. I hope to hear you are well through with such terribles soon, and let us know how the party passes off. You having a party in which none of us know a single face! Today it is cold; last night the frost came in earnest, black and white too, and good bye to Indian summer, roses and geraniums. Now I shall cover up my garden, and take refuge in the green-house, as often as the sewing machine will let me go. Have you not enjoyed the news from the South? There are a many striking things in the reports; besides the shells and the cannon balls. How that iron hail curdles my Quaker blood. But the ground circuit of vessels, the two loyal South Carolina commanders, own our flag again on that little rebel sandhill, the poor negroes besieging our vessels, bundle in hand, begging to be carried off into the land of liberty, all bring the tears into my eyes. Poor creatures, I fear a disappointment for them. But there is emancipationist enough about me, to hope they may be only the first of the millions, that shall go rip out of the house of bondage, even if a redder sea than that of old, shall spread before them, perhaps, not to be passed over dry-shod. Are not glad our good old Grandfather led his house from there long ago! Do not let my neglect punish myself more than it has you, but remember that Mother has share of your letters, and do not consider it an extra writing, when you direct to me. Cannot you manage sometime #to improve the acquaintance with Mrs. Guyon? If you ever see her again give her my love, for the sake of her sister's memory.#. Speaking of Mrs. Guyon- she is woman would be a valuable friend under some circumstances I think, and not hard to make so. Good bye dear sister, E.H. Peirce #Kiss the children for me and tell you husband with my love, that he should of added with his autograph and not have feared.# # Perhaps I ought to say for Jere that the articles from New York, came safely. Mary Hayes is much gratified by your remembrance of her.#

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