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Title: From Moses Paul, Va to John Graham, Co Londonderry
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FilePaul, Moses/157
SenderPaul, Moses
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationplantation owner?
Sender Religionunknown
OriginPetersburg, Virginia, USA
DestinationMagherafelt, Co. Derry, N.Ireland
RecipientGraham, John
Recipient Gendermale
Relationshipfriends (brothers-in-law?)
SourceDocument T 2850/1/5 Presented by Gr G. Gillespie
ArchivePublic Record Office Northern Ireland.
Doc. No.9406154
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by LT, 07:06:1994.
Word Count1214
John Graham Esq.
Magherafelt [Co. Londonderry?]
postmarked 3M FE 7 41

Petersburg, Virginia, 29th Dec. 1840.
Dear Graham,
I am now nearly two years in this republic, and have not recd.
[received?] the first scrape of your pen - not even on the back of a
newspaper. Why is this? am I beneath your notice because I am
turned American, or do you think because sister writes to me once a
year - that her doing so , will exempt you - I have now sat down,
not to write you a long letter, but to open a correspondence with a
friend who is as dear to me as a Brother. Although I have not heard
FROM yourself - I have heard OF you - of your kindness to my dear
sister, and for this accept the thanks of one who, even if he is a
wanderer in a strange land, has still some gratitude in his
composition -
From what I have often heard sister saying, I presume she is still
as prejudiced as ever against America & Americans - this is wrong -
persons living in Europe cannot have any idea of this country &
should not condemn it so unmercifully without judge or jury -
certainly we differ from you in some points very materially, but it
is not worth talking of - It is more than likely, if I tell you
that Americans are a LITTLE better than savages that you will not
believe me, for I recollret [recollect?] sisters expression is -
"AMERICANS ARE WORSE THAN SAVAGES" - 'tis time we have our niggers
by the thousands, and a very useful part of the creation they are -
I know we are blamed for slavery, but we cannot help it - we are
obliged to have niggers - while I am writing this I can hear the
auctioneer displaying his eloquence before the enlightened and free
sons of Columbia - over a lot of fine, healthy, likely negroes
[Negroes?] that he is hiring out for the year 1841 - I send you a
paper, that will give you an idea of the qualities of some that will
be sold & hired in a few days - what we call hiring out is simply
this - If I own 20 or 30 negroes, I may not have work for them all,
in that case, I send part of them to the auctioneer, & they are put
up to the highest bidder - the person who gets him giving me a Bond
for the amt. [amount?] I have hired him at, & that he will give him
two suits of clothes & a Blankett [blanket?] in the year - so at the
end of the year I have the nigger well fed, well clothed, and very
probably well worked into the bargain - the prices stand about thus,
for labourers, field hands &c from 90 to 120$ - for Tobbacco
[tobacco?] twisters & factory hands 200 to 250$ per year - or
about 56œ a year - food prices -
I am in receipt of a letter from sister with the good news that I
have another little relative in your family, I hope she is well and
thriving fast. I am told she has dark eyes, is a brunette, has dark
hair &c _ how is this, she must be the very reverse of Billy - by
the bye, I hope my little Billy is growing fast - I expect the next
time I see him, he will be large enough to ride a poney [pony?], but
God only knows, when that will be - perhaps I may never see him - I
am living in an uncertain climate - here to day & gone to morrow -
if I die without being married, William Graham is my heir - if on
the contrary one of those Virginia angels captivate me - Billy will
have little to look out for from me - & so for the present the
matter stands - Tell sister I still continue to cultivate the
society of the fair sex and find as yet, my heart remains whole -
this is strange - I was formerly very susceptible of the tender
passion - but I'm changed - wofully [woefully?] changed - I am
living in the midst of beauty -& revel in the light, live a gay life
& I might almost say a happy one - If I were with you I could tell
you some strange stories but they don't answer on paper - I will
live in hope of giving them to you in person - I understand Jas.
[James?] Duncan's lady has presented him with a - I don't know what
- its [it's?] a little one any way, I don't know whether boy or girl
- I'm told they are living happily together & I assure you they are
not more happy than I would wish.
I am sorry to hear that our esteemed friend - Miss - I forget her
name - I mean our fat friend Hugh Walker's wife's sister - is still
leading a single life - why don't the men propose - If I were in
their place I wd [would?] not be long in suspense - for my part I
would go all the way to Magherafelt for her, if I thought she would
marry me; just to keep me warm the cold weather - but I would make a
bargain, we wd [would?] sleep in seperate [separate?] beds in July &
augt [August?] I mean when the ther [thermometer?] stands at 95
[degrees?] at midnight - Lord bless me, what an infernal
perspiration she would be in. the very thought of it has brought
tears to my eyes with laughing. How is that sweet one, Miss Eliza
Duncan, I wonder how she would like America - you might feel her
pulse on the subject, give her a kiss from me - I'll bet you 4d. you
don't kiss her as sweetly as I would - When you receive this - walk
over to Uncle David's, and give her half a dozen of kisses for me,
ask for a lock of her hair, and send it to me in your answer to this
- Tell her I was almost in love since I came to this country - I wd
[would?] have been so, all out, but that the lady was engaged - I
was groom's man, & when I went to kiss the bride, in place of
stooping down I took her up in my arms - you may think Eliza Graham
small but she is a perfect giantess to this lady - she is in every
aspect the image of Eliza only smaller - I have almost fallen in
love with one of the most beautiful ladies I ever saw - beautiful
did I say - yes, LOVELY, FASCINATING, ANGELIC, all that you can
think of in an angel is concentrated in this woman - but I will say
no more, or you will say I am in love - so for the present -
farewell beauty -
Present my affct. [affectionate?] love to all my friends in Magherafelt
Tell sister I will write her soon & beleive [believe?] me
Ever your sincere & affct [affectionate?] friend
Moses Paul

John Graham Esq.