Morganton, N.C.
May 13, 1876    

Saturday night has at last come to my weary mind and body and ere the " friend of my pillow o'er my eyelids creep." I want to enjoy a quiet talk with the very dear Capt.

The house has been a perfect hospital for the past fortnight, and my time has been so fully employed that not a moment could I find to enjoy the pleasure I so much desired. I'm glad to report one and all much better and now that the anxiety of mind and care of nursing is all over (for the first time) I feel broken down.

Nothing has been discussed in our town for the past ten days, but the Strange trial. One and all of our best people rejoice with him in his acquital. I suppose you have seen a full account of it in the papers. Also to grand and eloquent speech of D.K. McRae. The courthouse was full to overflowing (all the ladies went). Before Judge Walls had fully uttered the verdict, not guilty, they (the women of course) threw up their hands and with tears rolling down their faces shouting God Bless you! All rushing to Mr. Strange to tender congratulations. This enraged the drunken mob and rude mountaineers so they yelled out, "Tis not justice, but broadcloth against coperas. The feeling was so strong that it was not regarded prudent for Mr. S[trange] to stay in A[sheville?], so he came on here that night. Judge Walls (vowed and did positively) summoned the ladies to appear for disrespect of court.

John is at the big centennial enjoying sightseeing to the fullest extent.

When are you going? I'd better ask when we are to enjoy seeing you in the mountains? The tenth was observed in a becoming manner (not many men came out). We had quite a crowd and enough flowers. I read the Memorial Constitution and some beautiful thoughts from the gifted pen of one of N.C. daughters. Cora Avery Ervin read a perfect little gem of a poem, "In The Land Where We Were Dreaming"

Don't think this savors of "Womans Rights" for I assure you that was not the spirit that moved us. We could get no one to deliver an address and no one to read another's speech, so rather than go silently to this sad and loving task we did what we thought was our duty.

The bells (of the churches) are tolled and as I passed the office of two Yanks the same old feeling rushed oe'r me with full power reopening the wound afresh as I thought of the dear loved brother whose grave came by their hands.

Have you seen Gen'l Vances speech? What are we drifting to?

I've much to tell you when I see you "face to face." When will it be?

I wish I could feel like you that duty was pleasure, the path of duty is safety, but not always pleasure, Why Capt. I do things every day of my life because I know it's my duty and I fear not to do my duty. I've often neglected a known duty and always suffered for it.

Don't get discontented. You will make every one around you unhappy as well as yourself. The act of contentment is this; not to seek to add to our condition, but to subtract from our desires. We all want too much. We think we need too much. Few of us are content to walk in the path "Our Father" has chosen for us.

I don't intend to lecture you dear Capt., so please don't take it in that spirit, but I've felt the bite of this serpent discontent and know how much more venom is in the fang so shake it off with all your might, I beg of you.

Do you think it just to send me four pages of commercial note for eight of letter pages?

I did not intend to talk so long and just see I've filled the eighth page. Pleasant dreams and slumbers light. Yours, L.T.P.

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