Monday, November 20, 2017

Henry "Harry" Scarsbrook Langhorne to Sarah "Sally" Tate Steptoe Massie, October 23, 1827

[Henry "Harry" Scarsbrook Langhorne at Chestnut Hill, Virginia to Sarah "Sally" Tate Steptoe Massie at [Pharsalia,] Tye River Mills, Nelson [County, Virginia,] October 23, 1827. Postmarked Lynchburg October 26. Massie Family Papers, Virginia Historical Society. This is my rough, annotated transcription from a copy graciously provided by William Myers. Extra paragraph breaks inserted for easier reading.]

                                Chestnut Hill 23rd Oct 1827
Dear Sally

I am sorry to informa you that James is not recovering as fast as his friends a few d ays ago, had a right to expect, some symptoms I understand still remain of an unpleasant character.

[D]o not let me give you unnecessary alarm, you know I am easily alarmed in cases of sickness, & having undertaken to give you a true account of his situation I feel it a duty to do so.

My Brother Wm. was here a few days ago & requested me to inform you or rather Mr. Massie that he intended selling 12 or 15 of his negroes & among those he could most conveniently spare were Leah & her family, & if Wm. wanted to own them & it should not be convenient to pay money for them, that he would exchange them for other negroes.

We have all had a return of the ague & fever, I am very unwell myself. 

Fanny joins me in love to one & all
                                                yours sincerely
                                                     H S Langhorne
[Frances "Fanny" Callaway Steptoe Langhorne (1798-1832) married Henry "Harry" Scarsbrook Langhorne (1790-1854) on March 13, 1816. "Sally" is probably a reference to their baby daughter, Sarah Massie "Sally" Langhorne (1826-1881). 

Sarah "Sally" Tate Steptoe Massie (1796-July 28, 1828) was married to William Massie (1795-1862) and was the daughter of James Steptoe (1750-1826). Their son Thomas James Massie (1817-1877) was born on March 23, 1817.There is a massive Massie collection at the University of Texas here

James = James Callaway Steptoe (1781-October 24, 1827), married to Catherine "Kitty" Mitchell (1780-1858) since 1808. 

The attending Physicians probably included Dr. William Steptoe (1791-1862) and perhaps indirectly Dr. James Townes Royall (circa 1797-1860), who had married Charles Johnston's daughter Frances Steptoe Johnston (circa 1807-after 1850), in Botetourt County on December 27, 1825.

My brother William = William Callaway Langhorne (1783-1858). 

Ague = malaria or something that caused similar reactions.]

[Many thanks to Sue Davis, William Myers, Mary Davy and Sally Young for their ongoing research collaboration.]   

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