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Title: Robert McElderry, Lynchburg, Va to Anne McElderry, Ballymoney.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
Filemcelderry, robert/25
SenderMcElderry, Robert
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationbusinessman (dry goods)
Sender ReligionProtestant (joins The Presbyterian Church At Some Point)
OriginLynchburg, Virginia, USA
DestinationBallymoney, Co. Antrim, N.Ireland
RecipientMcElderry, Anne
Recipient Genderfemale
SourceT 2414/9: Copied by Permission of Dr. Helen Megaw, c/o 66 Malone Road, Belfast.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, Northern Ireland.
Doc. No.9007070
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by JM 25:10:1993.
Word Count937
TranscriptLynchburg [24th?] Sept 1853

Dear Sister
I have indeed been very remiss in my duty
in that I have not written to you long before this time I could
not nor cannot at any time write much that is to you of an
interesting nature and except to say to you that I am well and
in the land of the living I have not much else to say. I have as
usual enjoyed good health since I last wrote to you. We have had
a remarkably hot summer and a very dry one so much so that
there will be a very short crop of tobacce [tobacco?] and the consequence is
that it has gotten up to a very high price we had rain soon
enough to make a good corn crop so there will be no scarcity
of bread. Since I have been to the city of Lynchburg untill [until?]
this summer I never have been out of it more than a mile
on the first day of August last I took a trip to the Natural
Bridge which is about thirty five miles above Lynchburg
We formed a small party had some ladies along and of course
enjoyed ourselves very much. The Bridge is certainly one of the
greatest sights I have ever seen you can pass over the top and
not know there was a bridge at the place but when you
go close to the edge of the ravine and look down below it
is enough to make any one shudder When we went down
below and looked up it was realy [really?] a magnificant sight to see
an arch so high so large and yet one solid [mass?] of rock.
It is a great place for man to go and see his own nothingness
man would labour for years and not produce such a work,
but the great master builder had only to say let it be and it was
There are a great many names cut in the rock at the bridge
by people who have come to see it from all parts of the world
but there is one name which stands high above all others and
a name which people will ever love to remember it is that of
George Washington it was cut in the rock by his own hands
when he was a young man. The Bridge is so high that to
throw a small stone over it requires an amount of strength which
few people possess it is said that General Washington threw
a silver dollar over it In going to the Bridge we took
the canal boat which goes up through the mountains. along
the way the seenary [scenery?] is splendid there is one place when going
up where the mountains seem to stand up all round
and leave no passage for the boat but after turning round
a little corner a beautifull [beautiful?] flat country appears in view and
after going through a narrow pass where the mountains seem
to overhang the river on booth [both?] sides you leave the mountains
away behind in the distance, Thomas Jefferson said that a sight
of the Natural Bridge was worth a trip across the the [sic] Atlantick
[Atlantic?] if it is I have been paid in one way for my trip across that
place I cannot say that I am disposed to be greedy yet I should
like to have a little more pay than I have yet received.
Mr Peters had a very heavy affliction this summer his only

son a boy of fourteen years died on the last day of July.
Thomas said in his last letter that you looked for me home this summer
and the [that?] Jane prophsied [prophesied?] I would be there at a certain
time I am sorry to say that she has failed this time. I cannot go home at
this time without ruining my prospects which are I might say at this
time bright. I cannot tell you how it is at this time with
me as I am not now at liberty to do so, I will let you know
as soon as I can without violating my word. Perhaps I
should not have told you even this much as it may excite
your curiosity to [too?] much however I will tell you this much.
I am not going to be married nor can I go home for some
years to come. I think brother William ought to have
gone to Austrailia [Australia?] rather than look for a situation in Belfast
if times are anything like what they were when I was there it would
be much better to leave home than to stay and work almost for nothing.
Mr Mathews was here this summer he was well when he left for
the springs he will be back again some time this month
when I get a letter from home he inquires a good deal about
people with whom he was acquainted he often inquires particularly
after Mr Boyle. Tell me when you write how the
two Johns come on what sort of a boy Thomas Lyle is and if he
would be willing to come to Virginia and live with his Uncle
Robert let me know how sister Jane and her young [family?]
get along in the world Tell David Boyd I will write
to him soon he should have written to me long ago as he is
indebted to me a letter at this time I will conclude my
long and dry letter by hoping that you are all well and that
I will hear from you soon.
Your affectionate brother
Ro. [Robert?] McElderry

[postmark] LYNCHBURGE
SEP [September?]

Miss Anne McElderry