This letter was written by Christopher Billup Strong (1783-1851) to his son, Creed Taylor Strong (1812-1862). Christopher, a lawyer, writes from his home in Vineville (near Macon), Georgia, and speaks of the continued ill health of his wife, Lucy Ann (Woodson) Strong (1776-1841). He also mentions his son, Samuel Miller Strong (1814-18xx).
Addressed to Creed Taylor Strong, Esqr., Talbotton [Georgia]
4 May 1836
Your last very affectionate letter deserved a more prompt reply but the cares of family concerns after so much absence has delayed it until this time.
On my return I found your dear mother in better health than when I left tho still quite unwell & debilitated. As soon as the weather becomes good I shall take up the line of march to the Indian Springs. All will consult her comfort & whims & indeavour to make it a trip of pleasure. Spend perhaps the most of our time at Doctor Sanders but every good day travel some & return to court which is adjourned to the fifth Monday in this month. After that we will either visit Talbotton & the warm springs or go to the Cherokee Country as may be deemed most conducive to her restoration. Do not be dispondent on her or any others account & rest assured that wherever we may be, you will occasionally have a candid & faithful report of us by letter.
Business with us, & Samuel goes on well & our little crop & garden is fine. Indeed, there is nothing to depress but your mother’s debility & that is the course of Providence & ‘ere must bear it with philoraphic & Christian fortitude.
Doctor Bailey & Lady have arrived & we are delighted with them & they write home that they are so with us. Indeed, we are proud of them as relatives. He is in person rather an improvement upon his brother as his legs are better formed & his expression of countenance more cheerful. He is also more communicative & at care in his manners & address. His talents & acquirements excellent. In a word, he is a well raised, well educated, talented & very agreeable gentleman. But still more of Madeline; without affectation she is rather handsome than otherwise & very talented. Her conversational tack & talent is most excellent & her powers of philorafic & moral applification & illustration unsurpassed. She has not the stayed dignity of the old school dames, nor the frivolous beauty of the midrun, yet she has evidently been well raised & well educated & has moved in the very first circles. She (woman like) talks a little too much, but always charms & enlightens all around her. I repeat that we are proud of our kin.
Samuel stayed a night with us & we persuaded him to go via Clinton to see & cheer his sister through the ceremonies of the May celebration. He says as to the upstart pure proud plebians, they may all go to Hell their own way. He is done with them. Thank God for that.
Read Lane, Lane, Lane, & study it practically. Quick operations of mind & body foes the business. Say to our esteemed friend Doctor Smead that in good old style, “I wish him & Madeline much happiness.”
Don’t forget to copy & save our petition for a serving upon Hicks (tho I hope it has been done long since) & bring the original with you to court. Until then, we do not expect to see you as we shall be upon the wing & we know not certainly where. Then you must be sure to come for we are always impatient to see you. We deplore your absence over each bowl of strawberries — indeed, whenever we have anything that tends to the gratification of mind or taste. Be cheerful. Nothing promotes one’s interest more than a confident, cheerful independent familiar front. Nothing so destructive as dispondency. Therefore, hold up my dear son & prosperity, wealth & fame awaits you. We must not indulge in unnecessary & tedious expressions of love & affection. Our whole hearts are with you & may our Heavenly Father ever surround & bless you.
— C. B. Strong