Today I'm posting a letter from Eliza Quitman to her son, Henry. This is one of our owner's favorite letters, because although years have passed since the writing of this letter, the sentiment remains. Parents still wait anxiously to hear from their children, and give them their children their best advice. Other commentary on the letter will be posted next week. Until then - happy travels, and may we see you at Monmouth soon!
Feb. 19th 1849
My dear Henry
I have been anxiously expecting a letter from you announcing your safe arrival at Charleston, but none have come to hand. You must now be fairly entered upon College life. How do you like it? You must my son make confidants of your parents remember always that they are your best and truest friends; open your heart freely to them, none on earth wish so sincerely for your good, your welfare as they. None no, not one is there who looks with such deep interest to your future as they, we also look to you for our happiness, to be the prop and stay of our old age, should it please God to spare our lives to a late period. I hope you will make the best use of your time. For remember time is one of the talents given us by Him the great Eternal and we must do our utmost to put it to a good account. Sometime I will make an extract from Washington’s life upon the subject of time well spent for you. We have made a great sacrifice to our happiness in sending you away from us though it be for a short time only, I believe it, at least I hope it may result in your good, if so, the sacrifice will not have been made in vain.
Since you left we have had some lovely weather, such as you know I delight in such days as are only seen in the South, succeeded by heavy rains, then some cold and lastly a very [big] snow storm, we have not had so much snow in 6 or 8 years. Your Father on the appearance of the Robin, took his gun for the first time in many a long day, sallied forth and declared war upon them, was quite successful in killing, but our Fardener Fitzgerald had all the advantage in numbers, in two or three hours he brought in sixteen. Rif is very well, seemed to miss you very much for a week or so, since he has attached himself to me. I now have three dogs to care for, Rif, Juno, and Flirt. I am pained, how grieved you may imagine, to inform you of the death of our excellent Pastor Mr. Giles. He died I am told quite suddenly three or four days since at Woodville, whether he had gone to his mother in law’s. We had been told that since his visit to Dr. Abercrombies his health had much improved and he thought soon he should be able to preach again, he was encouraged to go to Woodville, and had a return of illness from which he could not recover. He was one of the most heavenly minded men I ever knew. Your friends are all well, Uncle was much pleased with your note says he will write to you. You must be careful to answer his letters, look up and respect him my son as though he were your Grandfather, he has always appeared in the light of a dear kind Father to me.