Friday, September 2, 2016

John Preston Johnstone [Johnston] to Eliza Mary Johnston, September 14, 1843

[John Preston Johnstone [Johnston] at Carlise Barracks, Pennsylvania, to his sister Eliza Mary Johnston at [Columbia, South Carolina], September 14, 1843, Box 26, Folder 12, Series X, Sub-series J, Robert Morton Hughes Papers, Special Collections and University Archives, Patricia W. and J. Douglas Perry Library, Old Dominion University Libraries, Norfolk, VA 23529. This is my rough transcription.]

My dear Lizzy

Yours of the . . . post marked 3rd I have just received; and though I can now say but little upon any subject, yet I write to assu[re] you of my safe arrival and of my satisfaction at my condition & prospect from what I have yet seen. I arrived here on the 1st (somewhat after my time as you may say, although you said I had such abundance of time to get here when I started from Abingdon) and my Captain, a better man than whom I suppose never drew breath, gave me, as soon as I made known my wish for it, a leave of absence of seven days to go to New York, to get my uniform & equipments: for that leave I only returned last night, and really since I left you I have scarcely been still a single day: now however I am stationary for some months at least. With the looks of this place and its people I am a good deal pleased & hope to spend an agreeable time here. I am not yet fixed at all, and am now busy in arranging my room and mess arrangement in the course of a few days I should be snugly settled, and at much more leisure than at present. I have a very fine horse to ride, a handsome, wild, fiery little black stallion, as pretty an animal as I almost ever saw, so you may know one great point in my happiness is already filled out. My companions I believe to be pleasant intelligent men from what I have seen of them.

I saw Uncle Edward in Washington as I passed through: he & Aunt Estelle are both very well & have gone to house keeping again in a very neat little establishment which he has rented -- of Uncle Jo nothing has been heard very lately, and I suppose he must be now on his way to Washington. 

I will write more fully in about a week or ten days; now I cannot as I am full of business of one sort or another all day. I do not doubt you're spending a most-agreeable winter in Carolina and only regret 'tis too far off that both money and time to see you are not at my disposal. Write often, dear Lizzy, more often that you formerly did, and give me the news of all your pleasures. Remember me to all enquiring friends, Uncle Syd in particular.

Most affectionately
Yr. brother
J.P. Johnstone 

[John Preston Johnstone/Johnston (1824-1847)
Eliza Mary Johnston (1825-1909)
Uncle Joe = Joseph Eggleston Johnston (1807-1891)
Uncle Edward = Edward William Johnston (1799-1867)
Aunt Estelle = Marie Antoinette Estelle Costar (De Cressac Villagrand) (ca. 1802-1848) 

Uncle Syd = Algenron Sidney Johnston (1801-1852)]

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