Betsey Verona Jagua to Ruth Fletcher, circa August 1864

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Dear uncle aunt & cousins one and all

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I now sit down to write you a few lines to let you know that were still alive and enjoying a comfortable degree of health at present hope these few lines if they reach you will find you the same we have not heard from our relatives for a long time why do you not write have you forgotten us if so I will pen a line or two by way of remembrance hoping to hear from you it is very dry here this season crops of all kind have suffered severely hay not more than half a crop in fact is fryed up we have had but very little rain this summer until last week we was [       ] with two refreshing showers which has done a great deal of good to late crops you would like to hear from unkle Lemuels folks they are well he is here now to our house just come and I shall have to lay by my paper and get dinner I wish you could come and eat with us but I never expect to enjoy that

It is two weeks to day since I began this I will try to finish it it is sunday evening but you will pardon me when I tell you that my time is all taken up with the care of my family through the week so that I have no time to write it is hard times here though we need not complain for we have enough to eat drink and wear by patching up our old clothes for the present prices will not admit laying any more than we can help for calico is 50 and cotton cloth is 80 cents per yard and other things in proportion produce brings a fair price wheat two dollars ten cents a bushel butter 35 cts but a dollar dont go but a little ways labor is from 150 to 200 dollars a day

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we have got our thrashing done we had 130 bushels of wheat our corn is good as we could expect though corn will not be an average crop throughout the country potatoes will be scarce we have 10 acres planted to corn and potatoes Father says I must tell uncle A about our stock well I will we have 18 head of 38 sheep 3 horses 23 hogs and 8 pigs we shall sell most of our hogs this fall

there will be a draft 5th of Sept in this state I tremble fear Seth will have to go O when will this cruel war come to a close which is now sadning our hearts desolating our fire sides causing widows and children to mourn and weep casting a dark pall of gloom over our once happy but now distracted country we can but pray that the time will soon come when peace and prosperity may be enjoyed by all that dwell in our land

Father is growing old not able to tutor much Everline is getting to be quite a large girl she will be seven years old in Feb Cyril quite a large boy he is well he lives with me give my love to aunt Lydia tell her to write it is ten o clock my eyes are dim I cant see to write any more I must close hoping you will write soon for I want to hear from you remember us at a throne of grace Our love to all

Good nightVerona