Tennessee Documentary History
  Multiple Collection Search     View bookbag 
your bookbag has 0 items 

Title: [Letter] 1835 Jul. 9, Tallahassee [to Andrew Jackson Donelson, Washington, D.C.] / Dan[ie]l S. Donelson : a machine readable transcription of an image
Author:Donelson, Daniel S.

This work is the property of the Tennessee State Library and Archives, Nashville, TN. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching, and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text. For all other use contact the Tennessee State Library and Archives, 403 Seventh Avenue North, Nashville, TN 37243-0312. (615) 741-2764.

Date: July 9, 1835
Extent: 4p
Summary:This document is a letter dated July 9, 1835, from Daniel S. Donelson in Tallahassee, FL to his brother Andrew Jackson Donelson, who was at the time serving as personal secretary to their uncle President Andrew Jackson. Daniel writes primarily about his struggles farming in Florida and about the incessant sickness and death in the region.
Collection:Bettie M. Donelson Papers
Box:III-E-2-3, b1

Page [1]  view page image

Tallahassee July 9th 1835
My Dear Brother

I am indebted to you some two or three letters, which would have been sooner answered but for indisposition- I am not yet well though sufficiently so to attend to the contents of your last letter which was recieved [received] on the 7th Inst. [Instant] You will see that I have placed my signature to the obligations, as desired, I hope, as they will (if no barrier interposes) they reach you in time to be presented to the Gentlemen from whom the purchase was made- I consider it an excellent bargain, and shall ever feel under lasting obligations to you for it- be assured of one thing that they payment shall be promptly met; you say that Col [Colonel] Williams and myself have only to advance $840. has this been done? if not inform me and the amount shall be forwarded forthwith.

The Siths purchase is a good one, the Negroes [added: are] low, but my [unclear: fears are ] are not a little

Page [2]  view page image

around [unclear: when ] reflection is made of the large amount of money which I will have to pay- the first payment being made the others could be very easily met by the labor of the Negroes provided we had cleared land to put them on immediately, but this we have not without going more deeply in debt- having however, left the land of our nativity in search of wealth I must riske [risk] [unclear: inr ] something, therefore this enterprise perhaps too hazardous for one in my circumstances.

Considering all things I have a pretty good Cotton crop, since the 1st of June I have frequently [added: been] unable to have out of 14 hands more than 3 or 4 in the crop to work in consequence of sickness- about the 15th of that month my overseer with his family reached my house on the 22nd ult. [ultimo] he died of bilious fever, leaving a wife and 3 helpless children, all now and sometime before his death sicke [sick] - I have now 10 sicke blacks amongst the number large whom I am afraid I shall lose, this is his 10th [unclear: weeke. margaret ] Nancy and our youngest child have been sicke though we are 5 miles from the place I rented in

Page [3]  view page image

the pine woods- in a word this is the most sickly if not the most deadly country extant; I have seen more sickness for the last two months than I ever witnessed before during my whole life. My expenses will therefore be heavy in the way of Doctor's bills, etc. though I hope to make something clear notwithstanding having been pretty much without an Overseer since the 1st of April I have been a good deal exposed to the hot sun and feel no surprise at my own sickness, I cannot now stand it consequently feel the want of my overseer greatly; I cannot now get one I fear of any description- the greatest difficulty will be in the picking out of my crop, my hands being almost all sicke, and no overseer and I myself indisposed 5 miles distance, but enough.

I sometime begin to think though will not indulge the thought, that if I were again in Ten. [Tennessee] I should be content to remain there, though there is money to be made here, at the riske of life. I would

Page [4]  view page image

greatly have prefered [preferred] it had I gone to Mississippi , there I would have been in it rideing [riding] distance of a healthy region I still entertain [added: the hope] that at no distant period my wishes in this respect will be realized, though I doubt whether it [added: they] should be at this time.

Margaret and Nancy, [unclear: air mm ] in love to sister Emily and the family- present me affectionately to the Genrl [General] and believe me sincerely

your Brother
Danl [Daniel] S. Donelson

A product of DLPS
To comment or inquire about content, contact UTK Special Collections
To report errors, contact UTK Special Collections