1819: David Shepherd Garland to Major William Meredith

This letter was written by David Shepherd Garland (1769-1841). Garland was elected as a Democratic-Republican to the 11th Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Wilson Cary Nicholas and served from January 17, 1810, to March 3, 1811. He was again a member of the State house of delegates in 1814, 1815, from 1819 to 1826, and 1832 to 1836. Garland married Jane Henry Meredith, the daughter of Col. Samuel Meredith (1732-1808), Jr, and Jane Henry (1738-1819).

This letter was written to Garland’s brother-in-law, Major William Meredith. These families were related to Patrick Henry and John C. Breckinridge.

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Addressed to Major William Meredith, Barren County near Glasgow, Kentucky

New Glasgow [Virginia]
September 22, 1819

Dear Sir,

I wrote sometime last month, but expect that my letter will not reach you as I have lately understood that you have removed from the neighborhood of Lexington. I will repeat the purpose of that letter which was to inform you that on the 9th of last month your mother [Jane (Henry) Meredith] departed this life and that I wished the party’s interested to attend on before the first of November, as I contemplated being the affairs of the Estate to a close by that time. I cannot well postpone it longer as I shall be obliged to leave home the first of December to attend the meeting of the General Assembly.

We have experienced an uncommon drought this summer and more than half crops of corn and tobacco well be made and considerable scarcity is apprehended. Buffs River, a few miles above this, has been unduly dry for some days, and we have now the first appearance of rain for many weeks. The difficulty and distress experienced here in money matters is beyond description and many considerable failures have taken place.

My family are in common health and all unite in love and affection to yourself and family. With high respect and esteem. I am, your friend, — David S. Garland


One response to “1819: David Shepherd Garland to Major William Meredith

  • Gordon C. Morse

    “Buffs River” would be short for Buffalo River, I believe. The geography works given the location of Garland’s home, the “Brick House,” which remains occupied, by the way. (David Shepherd Garland was my gr-gr-gr-grandfather.)

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