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Catalog Number 2016.02.0025
Object Name Letter
Date 1823
Title 1823 Sept 17 Margaretta Brown to Orlando Brown
Scope & Content Letter from Margaretta Mason Brown (Baltimore,MD) to Orlando Brown (Frankfort, KY). This letter discusses Margaretta's fears of never seeing loved ones again, especially Mason as she has not heard from him. She writes of her prayers for the salvation of her children and others. She praises the family members that she meets in Baltimore including, Eliza and John Mason Duncan. Margaretta writes about the dinners she has attended during her visit. She discusses their travel plans, and explains that she and John are waiting for Louisa Brown who will be travelling to Frankfort with them. Margaretta asks Orlando to instruct the servants on preparation for their return to Frankfort. She names her family and friends in Frankfort to whom she wishes to send greetings.

[Transcription]

Baltimore 17th Sepr 1823-

My dear Orlando,

I have been moving about so much that my mind has become almost as unsettled as my body yet I will try to scribble a few lines - not to inquire after your health, as I should not be able to receive an answer, but to let you know that we are all in usual health, & hope soon to be with you in Frankfort. But oh my dear Orlando how many fears distract my bosom when I think on the probability that my eyes may never more rest on the countenances of some who are very dear to me - Though aware at all times of the uncertainty of life, Mr. Breckinridge's death seemed to have placed that uncertainty in a still stronger light - Oh "that the living would lay it to heart" that my dear children, would withdraw their thoughts from a world which they must soon leave, and endeavour to secure "a building on high - a house not made with hands - eternal in the heavens" - For this I have prayed since the first hour of your existence - for this I continue to pray daily - God grant that I may not be offering up prayers for any who are already beyond the reach of mercy - that I have very very painful forebodings- I have heard nothing from or of Mason since I left Maysville & of the "six letters" which you mention; only one has been received-- I am very much gratified by my visit here - I am charmed with all the family; your cousin Eliza is an uncommonly fine woman; and your cousin John is as affectionate as a son or a Brother could be - They have four very fine children - Mr. Duncan's standing is very high - His pulpit abilities are considered greater than those of any other clergyman and his congregation flourishing in a remarkable manner.
Yesterday we dined at Mr McKim's - to-day we expect to dine at Mr. Greer's - and have indeed more invitations on hand, than we shall probably be able to accept-We had made our arrangements to leave this place yesterday, but in consequence of expecting Louisa Brown, have determined to wait some days longer, but shall set out on our return immediately on her arrival - She wrote to your Father that she was extremely anxious to return with him; but would not be able to leave her Grandmother's until the 14th for want of an escort. I hope however that she will be able to reach this place before we leave it, as I should be delighted to have her with me on my own account as well as on hers-As we shall probably be obliged to return by land-perhaps a line addressed to us at Chillicothe might be received - or even at Wheeling - I wish you would make the attempt - It would enable me to prosecute my journey with much more satisfaction if I knew how matters were at home - I have not received a single line since I left Kentucky, except a letter from Mrs. Beckley -
Your Father requests you to tell Miles & James that he hopes they will have a good stock of wood laid in before he returns, that they may begin to secure the Corn-I had left the charge of clearing the house to Fanny, but as she is gone, I don't know who to employ unless Hannah & Rose can manage it between them, as I do not wish strangers to be about the house in my absence-Tell Hannah the lower part of the house - staircases, &c can be cleaned at any rate and tell Rose that I have seen no cobwebs at all in any houses since I eft Frankfort, and that I should not like to find any at home as such things as spiders are hardly known here -
Remember me affectionately to Thomas & thank him for two papers which have come to hand - I hope to find him with you on my return -- My best regards to all the under named - not forgetting nor neglecting a single one. Visit Dr Brown's and your Aunt Humphreys families Mrs Love- Innes - Todd - Epes - Tunstall- Mr & Mrs Smith - Miss [illegible] Thomas - Mrs Blair - Mrs Thomas' Family in short any other of my intimate friends who inquire after me, as if they were really interested in the question.
Adieu my dear Orlando, may a merciful God grant as a comfortable meeting here, & a happy eternity together hereafter-
Your affect. Mother
M. Brown
[page torn] Betsey's love to all--

[Address Block]
Mr Orlando Brown
Frankfort
Kentucky

[Postmark]
Baltimore
Sep
[illegible]
People Margaretta Mason Brown
Orlando Brown
Louisa Brown Rucks
Mason Brown
Eliza Duncan
John Mason Duncan
Miles Stepney
Hannah Stepney
Mary Brown Humphreys
Maria Beckley
Joseph Cabell Breckinridge
Search Terms Baltimore, MD
Frankfort, KY
Wheeling, WV
Prayer
Death
Travel
Slavery
House work
Crops