The following two letters were written by Elizabeth Clayton Britts to her mother and brother in 1889. It appears that Elizabeth was living in Fayette County, Alabama when she wrote the letters, not too far from Itawamba County, yet Elizabeth apparently hadn't seen her mother at least since the birth of her son Wesley in 1882 or 1883. I haven't been able to locate Elizabeth or her family in the 1880 census and can't find them in any of the subsequent censuses either. Also can't find anything about the sons Wesley and Asberry (Asbury).
In the second letter, to her brother Nathaniel M. Clayton, Elizabeth tells him to tell "Mat" hello. Mat refers to Martha A. Bowen, first wife of Nathan, who died in 1892.
Published in Itawamba Settlers, Fall 1992
Submitted by Sundra Malcolm of Eugene, Oregon
May the 28, 1889
Fayett Courthouse, Ala.
It is through the tender mericies of God that I am permited to write you again. This leaves us all well. I am in better health than I was when you saw me last. I have two little boys one 6 years old 30 of August named Wesly youngest named Asberry 3 years old 24 of Dec next. Alferd is tending mill for Mrs. Newton and said that her mother was alive the last letter she got from her. Alfred sid that he wanted to see you very bad and if you are yet alive he would write to you. Mother if you are alive yet pleas write to us and let us know where you are and how you are getting along. I want to see you so bad I can't hardly stand it and if you are alive yet I want to come and see you. I have got no letters from none of you in long time. Have wrote several letters to you and have got no letter from none of you yet. I have a nice garden, have chickens large enough to fri. I will close this letter by saying I hope to hear from you.
Your devoted daughter,
To Patience M. Clayton
To Mr. Nathan Clayton
May the 28 1889
As I have not heard from you in long time I will write you again. Have wrote several letters to you all and can get no answer. This leaves us all well and I hope that this will reach and find you all well and doing well. I want you to write all about the connections. Alfred said if you would give him the same offer that you once made him he would come out there. I want you if mother is yet alive to contrive her letter to her. I want to know how many children you have. Tell Mat that I would be glad to see her. Tell the other children all to write to me. I want to hear from you all very bad. We are kneeding rain very bad crops look sorry for the time of year. Corn is selling at 75 cents bushel from 5 to 6 dollar barrel meat 10 cents pound everything else in proportion. I will close by saying I hope to hear from you soon.
Your loving sister,
To Nathan Clayton