East New Market


24 October 1847

Margaret A. Parrott to her nephew, Anthony L. Manning

(Collection of Karen Nicholson, Arlington, VA)

Dayton O  October 24th 1847  Sabbath Day 

Dear Nephew    

I commenced a letter you to you more than a month ago.  But for some course or other, it never was finished and I am now obliged to commence another one.  Your last letter came duly to hand (as did your two former ones) but my time is so much occupied--- that I cannot always reply to a friend just when I would like to --- we have no servants here that we can call our own --- they are here today and gone tomorrow --- if the notion takes them --- 4 of my children have had the measels but have entirely recovered and if I should not write very often I think I am excusable --- Since I last wrote --- our Dayton Volunteers have returned from the Mexican War after one years service (but not without the loss of many noble hearted ones)  great preparations were made by their friends & the Citizens generally --- to receive them  --- Our City was handsomely illuminated ---  besides several splendid parties were given --- one in particular I will mention, next door to us --- it was given by the half brother of the gallant Mayor Giddings --- a handsome young officer --- that had command of the Ohio regiment ---several of the -- the company assembled at half past nine in the evening (which is the unusual hour here)  dancing commenced at 10 -- and at 12 o/clock we had supper --- every thing passed off very pleasantly indeed --- there was about two hundred persons there --- the men that served under him ---are having a sword made for him --- that will cost six hundred dollars --- it is to be made in Boston -- & is to be presented to him in this city --- I shall not be able to give you much news only our town.  Seems to be in a very prosperous condition --- We now have the Magnetic Telegraph in operation --- from here to Baltimore & Philadelphia --- but I suppose it is something new to you for it is what the Eastern shore will never boast of Suffice it to say -- we get all important news, from the Eastern cities in a few hours --- say 3 or 4 --- but perhaps you have been in Baltimore & have seen them in operation -- if you have not -- it would be well worth while to go (for that if nothing else -- for it is Certainly one of the greatest discovery's of the nineteenth Century --- I am going to tell you that it will be impossible for me to visit Maryland this season --- my babe is two young to leave & it would fatigue me too much to take it along -- I am very  anxious to come ---for I think old sylvia would be so much better with me than where she is --- when you write Let me know if Aaron is living & if he is with your father.  Yet you must know Anthony that I have a great deal of sympathy for those poor colored people that belonged  --- to my Dear Father they never treated handley?   by us all --- and I am afraid that they now endure many hardships --- oh how I wish the time had come when slavery -- could be abolished -- in every state in the Union --- only Compare the conditions of the free states with those of the slave ones and see how much more prosperous the free ones are --- New J -- Pennyl, & Oh. --- & indeed all others.  O Anthony if ever you live to be a man dispense with the use of slaves --- it may go a little hard at first --- but Learn to be independent --- My boys have learned to black their own shoes --- & do their own errands --- and I would not now have them raised in a slave state if I were sure they would fall heir to a million of dollars --- Providence -- has placed us here & there   I am willing to live & die --- Geone is now at Collidge   he is at the Weslyn University situated in Delaware---O.   Just 2 days ride from here.  I had long dreaded the hour of departure -- for I had  watha?  our him from his infancy with a Mother's love ---- And I am inclined to think that there is o love stronger than a Mother's --- that it is Seldom thought of by children --- oh how good, you ought all to be to your parents that have done so much for you   it is true you do not know much of a Mothers love --- but she loved you as well as I do my mine  & I am inclined to think if you had been blest with the presence of one  -- you would have been a different boy from what you are --- if I may Judge from the Contents of your last letter --- (scratched out  )  for I have never in my life ---learned or heard expressed sentiments of so much hatred from one fellow being towards another as you expressed toward your step mother --- I am sorry my dear that you have ever been so unfortunate as to have one --- but as you have got her -- it is better to live in peace with her --- & if she treats you unkindly -- bear it with meekness --- and persuade your father to put you at college & keep you there until you graduate -- & also your Sister -- I wish it was so that I could have the raising of your Sister --- but providence has decreed it otherwise --- oh be kind to your sister.   your father will not live always & when he is gone --- she will have no one to look up to -- but you --- try & cultivate your mind -- & fit & prepare yourself for usefulness in the world --- a good education in the foundation of all that is good & just --- present my respect to your Father & Sister & I accept a large share for yourself & when you write by & give me some news --- now Anthony I have tryed to give you some good advice -- (I do not know whether it will be well received or not but he that as it may -- I shall always say the last was really disgusting & you may be sure was committed to the flames as soon as it was read.  I must now bid you farewell     

be a good boy
M A Parrott

I suppose I have tried your patience as I have scarcely room to write my name.