This letter was written by Thomas J. Moore and his siblings to their brother, Jacob K. Moore (1818-17xx), who had recently relocated from East Tennessee to Danville, Indiana. The Moore siblings were the children of John Moore (1795-1836) and his wife Susan Moore (1798-1841). Jacob married Phebe W. Rich (1813-18xx) on 20 October 1839 in Kingston, Tennessee.
The Moore siblings included (at least) William Adophus Moore (1819-1891), Susanna Moore, Ann E. Moore, and Thomas J. Moore.
Addressed to Mr. Jacob K. Moore, Danville, Hendricks County, Indiana
December 22nd 1839
We received your letter of the 1st on Thursday morning the 19th stating that you & sister Phebe arrived there in safety & good health. We was very glad to know that you was in good health when you got home.
Mother says she thinks you are not pleased with that country from the letter you wrote and if you are not pleased, she says you had better leave there as it has been very sickly we understand. Mother says you must write freely your mind for what you do not write, I will imagine. And the next time you write, tell all about the country and how you are pleased with it. Mother says she will never feel satisfied until you are settled to your satisfaction. I have much to say if I could see you. I flatter myself that I will see you again in 2 years if we all live and if I was certain the time would not be too long but uncertain when I think of the great distance between us. I almost despair every seeing you again. Write often to me as it gives great satisfaction to me. My health is better than it was when you left me. We are getting along very comfortably. I have plenty of wood. I have not got my pork yet but have it engaged at $4.oo per cwt. Tell Phebe she must write to me soon & tell Mrs. Rich she must not forget to write. I send my love to all my friends there.
— Susanna Moore
We have not heard from Bro. William for near 3 weeks. We waited 2 or 3 days to hear from him but no news. The next day after you left here, Driskill come home and Samuel presented the note to him which made him very mad & swore he would not pay the note. The note was laid up for loss but I asked Mr. Gillespie about it and he told me to give it to an officer which I done immediately and I kept a look out for something to make it out of. He had a suit of fine clothes in the tailors shop and I said nothing about it only to Mr. Gillespie until I told the officer and he got out an execution & levied on it. His account against you was $4.83 & the note & interest amounted to $16.15 which left a balance of $11.32. I believe that rascal forged part of his account against you now. Jacob give up, I am a better collector than you (with the help of Mr. Gillespie).
Samuel probably will write in a week or two and tell you all about it though I think he has concluded to work here in town. John Gillespie advised him to go to work here & so did George L. They say they will buy him an anvil & bellows to go to work and I think he will go to work here. Gillespie says they will trust him for the anvil & bellows until he is able to pay for them and if he fails, they will take them back. Mother says she thinks it will be a good plan as he can support her & the family & what you & William makes can go to the other purposes. In your next letter, tell what you think about it. He went to Mr. S____’s and got a situation much to his notion but Gillespie thought it would not do him to leave his trade and go to another. They say they will hire him a hand to work with him of he cannot do by himself.
The children is going to school to Monsior Cliff and is learning very well. Lewis is now sitting reading a Sunday School book about Jacob & Esau. John learns very well. The children has not forgot you. They talk about you & sister Phebe every day. Lewis says he dreamed about you the other night. He said he dreamed you come home in your carry-all and he was going off with you when he hollowed so loud it waked him.
Kingston is as dull as ever if that will be any gratification to you. No more, but remain your affectionate brother, — Thomas Moore
December 22nd 1839
Dear Sister Phebe,
I must tell you some news about the City of Kingston if I know any that would be any gratification. The young men of this place talk about giving the young ladies a tea party for the 25th of this month but whether they do it or not, it is uncertain. Mr. William F. Mason of Mississippi is married to Miss Sarah Ann Chelan of Pulaski, Tennesssee. Their relations here are very much pleased with the match. The only thing astonishing is she is a poor girl.
Sister Phebe, you must write to me shortly and tell me how you are pleased with your new home in your letter. In your letter you asked how mother was getting [along]. Mother is much better than when you left. She has had but one spell of the Cholic and that not too serious than before. I have a good deal more to say if room would permit but I will have to draw a close as E. Ann wishes to write a few lines. Give my respects to Mrs. Nave ¹ & Grandma Rich. Your affectionate brother, — Thomas J. Moore
Monday, December 23rd 1839
Dear Sister Phebe,
I now sit down to inform you some of the news of Kingston if I can think of any worth telling you. We are all in good health excepting some of us has very bad colds. Ma is better than she was when you and brother Jacob left. Mrs. McEwen and Matthew left here for the mountains and staid at Mr. Huffman’s. She has improved every day since she was gone. Aunt Mary took the fits a day or two before you and Jacob left. Mrs. McEwen says that she never saw any person in such a way in her life. I was very sorry for Ma when you and Jacob left — she grieved so much. Mrs. Jordan sends her love to the ___ generation of you all. Please kiss Mrs. ____’s babe for me. Answer this letter. No more in this letter. Your affectionate sister, Ann E. Moore.
December 23rd 1839
Jacob, since I wrote yesterday, Uncle Thomas and Samuel has come. They say that all our connections was well when they left. Aunt Polly McCullough and Aunt Winney are dead. Aunt Winney died the 12th Dec. 1839.
Your brother, — T. J. M.
¹ “Mrs. Nave” was Lurean Rich, Phebe’s sister, who was married to Christian C. Nave (1803-18xx), the son of John and Elizabeth Nave. Christian and Lurean were married 2 December 1831 in Kingston, Tennessee and relocated to Danville, Indiana, in 1831. He was an attorney.