Thursday, January 17, 2013

1863 Januaary 1 Carysbrook, Va.

                                                Carysbrook  New Years day 63
My dear Sir -            Carter got to Palmyra before my servants
had started from there with the carriage & baggage wagon.  I am glad
you were so prompt in correcting the error into which I had fallen
from want of distinctness on my dear Georgias part.  I have seen
 neither of the two letters to which she refers, addressed to De & Fan, in
which she says she told them she could not come.  The girls both
say there was no such message or purpose expressed in either
of Georgias letters -- I am sorry to be deprived of the pleasure
of seeing her & would have been very glad to have had a visit from
Ella -- My plan of gong to the South is embarrassed by the
enemys movement upon Vicksburg & by my seeing it stated
to day in the papers that the Yankees have broke up the
Vicksburg & Shreveport  r rd as far as Delhi 28 miles.  I shall
await further progress in events before I set off for the South
  Braxton has had an intermittent fever this Xmas which
has kept him confined to the house all the time - he is now
better I hope. We have no diptheria on the place at present.
Your plans about renting land are so unsettled that I
do not know how to reppy to your proposition about
hiring some of my negroes -- I suppose you will settle
down at Brampton & take the chances there -- Negroes hire
very high even here, in Ricd they bring unheard of prices
  I wanted to consult you about Hannah, if you want her
why have you not mentioned it.  She can be hired for a high
price in Richmond -- I think I will sell Katy.  Hannah
has given satisfaction to Mrs Brooke, but of course she cannot
stay there at the present rate.  Write at once what you want

[page 2]
done about her --  I am progressing vigorously ploughing
& will have over 100 acres taken up very soon.  My wheat looks
quite well - My plan is to put in a large crop of cor this
year, if Providence permits, as I feel sure the demand for it
will keep up for more than another year -- So fearfull have
been the inroads of the enemy upon all Eastern  Va that I
feel sure corn will be scarce when it has hitherto been
most abundant -- Indeed the provision supply for our
people is the question, or difficulty about which I feel the
most uneasiness.  My part is to raise all the grain & can & if
permitted to do so undisturbed can raise a good deal --
I find corn is getting scarce even in this country where the people
had comparatively good seasons, & perfect security from the enemy
    Ran as you have learned has gone to join the army
& has a position in the ordinance department under Major
McLaws, & with Capt Edwin Taliaferro, in Genl. McLaws
division -- Ran left his horse here intending to send up
for him by a free man in whom he has great confidence.
As yet the man or boy Jim has not turned up & it occurs
to me that I had better turn the horse over to you
in the hope that you may be able to find some one to
take the horse down to Ran.  I would not trouble you
in this matter if I were not really at my wits end about
it.  Carter says that persons are constantly going down
from your neighbourhood to the army,  & I trust you
will without much difficulty find some trusty person who
can continue the horse to Ran--
  One of the girls will add something to this letter Kiss Georgia &
the boys for me. give my love to you sister: & believe

[page 3]
me yours very truly, & affectionately
                                      J[ohn] R[andolph] Bryan
I hear with deep regret of the death of Mrs Lile
Mrs Sayre dined hear Wednesday & communicated to us
the sad news ---- I have concluded to send Major Lacys man Peter
on with the horse to Elwood & hear from the [?] there & Mr Tucker Lacy [?]
send Major Lacys negroes back---

My dear Georgia
     We are all much disappointed
at your not coming & though I had given
up all idea of seeing you, still when
Dr Grinnan's letter to Pap came I again
thought you would certainly come tho' not
at as early a day as Papa imagined.
 Tuck will certainly leave on Tuesday
Dr Carmichael says he will take no
excuse.  As to my having anyone with
me that is all very uncertain.  We have
invited Betty Conway & Netty but Betty
is trying to get some employment from
the Government by which she can support
herself & child & Netty does not say that
she will come.  I hoped to G get Mary
[Gate?] but she is afraid of the diphtheria
& will not come.  Papa cannot go
to Louisiana now though as the track
near Vicksburg is torn up & Pap will
wait the result of things out there.  I am
glad he cannot go, as this place needs
his attention I believe as much as L[?]
what we hear is  is going on smoothly

[page 4]
we have a new overseer here who Pap
does not like & that is one reason I hate
him to go--I heard the joyful news
yesterday of the birth of Ada's little
baby it is a boy they are both doing
well & Dr. Moore said she behaved
bravely -- God has been good to her.
Aunt Georgia is delighted & communed
for the first time Christmas day--
Have you heard the news from dear old
Gloucester, & how the Yankees served
Mr Kemp & Mr Smith, & dear old Mr Mann
& many others. They took all their cattle
& horses & mules, & lived off of Mr Kemps
for 3 or 4 days.  He has left Gloucester & will
not return until after the war. The vile
men threatened to shoot Mr Mann because
he called them thieves & robbers, Mr Manns
servants all behaved well especially Geo.
Mrs. Kemp has left Enfield & my things are
scattered about the neighbourhood.  If
Dr Grinnan will let Hannah stay at Cousin
D's I know they will be glad as they all
like her very much & he must just ask
what hire he wants & it will be paid  I am
sure.  Gen. Cocke has sent a box of Sorgum
seed or millet seed here for Dr G & Mr John
Patton.  How are you to get it.  Love to all--
Tom Tucker is better - I send the children
some candy - God bless you all Let me hear
from you when you can - Your devoted D. B. Page

MSS 49

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