Posted By:Kathy Duncan
Subject:Martha Hayes/Susan A. Taylor
Post Date:April 16, 2004 at 17:34:49
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Forum:Mecklenburg County, VA Genealogy Forum
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Saw this letter for sale today on ebay. Thought the content might be of interest.

1840s VIRGINIA TOBACCO PLANTATION LETTER. An original three-page folded letter with a black circular BOYSTON Va. postal cancellation. Written by Martha Hayes of Greensboro, Mecklenburg, Virginia, to her daughter, Mrs. Susan A. Taylor of Somerville, Tennessee. Written in October during the 1840s and details tobacco agriculture and the treatment of ill slaves, including Fanny and her Mammy. The content reads in part: “Our family has een quite healthy this summer. Joanna Sprigg had slight attacks of chills & fever & all the children have had mighty bad colds & that’s all the sickness that’s been in the family at all – but all around us is a great deal of sickness. It has been ascertained that there were a thousand deaths in Halifax County last summer . . . Your father has the best crop of tobacco he ever had. He will not make as much corn as he did last year but is in hopes he can make out enough to serve him – calculates on making 260 barrels . . . he says you must tell Mrs. Caldwell his Grandmother was a Tabb & his Mother a Walker. He was so young when he came from Gloucester that he cant remember any more about them. They moved to Mecklenburg because it was a tobacco county having a great having a great many slaves . . . Susan I would advise you when Fanny is sick to have a Doctor or some experienced hand with her, for her Mammy & most of the family were very sick with their first child & I had to be mighty particular with them. If they are not treated in the nicest style then they will never get [over] it nor be half as much account to you afterwards.”