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Diary, January 1st 1861 - Dec. 1865:
Electronic Edition.

Bethell, Mary Jeffreys, b. 1821

Funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services
supported the electronic publication of this title.

Text transcribed and annotated by Kristofer Ray
Text encoded by Jeanine Cali and Natalia Smith
First edition, 2000
ca. 120K
Academic Affairs Library, UNC-CH
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill,

Source Description:
(text) MARY JEFFREYS BETHELL DIARY: January 1st 1861 - Dec. 1865
Mary Jeffreys Bethell,
Call number 1737 (Manuscripts Dept., Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

        The electronic edition is a part of the UNC-CH digitization project, Documenting the American South.
        Transcript of the manuscript. The original is in the Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

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Library of Congress Subject Headings, 21st edition, 1998

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Mary Jeffreys Bethell Diary

January 1st 1861

        Ground white with snow. This is new years day, the old year is gone forever with all its sorrows and joys. When I look back to the events of last year, I am led to say that the Lord has been good to me. I had more of joy last year than sorrow, my family were blessed with health, and I had no serious trouble (except when my husband went to Memphis, and Emeline and Dick died last year, and Cinda's twin babies).

        I went to Raleigh in the month of March with my Step Mother. I stayed ten days, and had quite a pleasant time in visiting our relations. I would like to go again.

        The 3rd Sunday in August there was a camp meeting at Carmel, I had a tent, we had a delightful time, 'twas a Heaven here on Earth. After my daughter gave birth to her child and came through safe, and done well, I felt so thankful and happy. The goodness of God is enough to lead us to repentance. I will now renew my covenant with my Heavenly Father, that if he will bless me and my family, that I will give myself to him, soul and body, time and talents, and live for his glory, who loved me and died for me. I pray that he will lead me and direct me in every thing that concerns my souls salvation.

        I am entering upon another new year, I am determined and resolved to live nearer to God, to deny myself, take up my cross and follow the Saviour. I hope that I may be built up this year in the most holy faith that I may advance in the divine life.

        We have some fears that this Union will be dissolved. South Carolina has seceded, the states are making every preparation for War Next Friday is the day set apart for prayer and fasting by the President Buchanan, that God would save us from Civil War and blood guiltiness.

Jan. 31 [1861]

        My dear little boys start to school today, Willie, Robert, Jimmie and Charlie. We have employed Mr. Prather from Guilford to teach, he is a worthy young man, a member of the Methodist Church (O' Kellyites).

        Mr. Bethell , Mary Virginia and George expect to leave for Arkansa on Monday.

Feb. 5 [1861]

        My husband, George and Mary Virginia left me today for Arkansa. Mr. Bethell expects to return in a month, about the 1st of March. George will go to college, perhaps 'twill be several months before I see him again.

        My daughter Mary Virginia Williamson and her little daughter, near three months old, left me this morning for her new home in Arkansa, three days travel from here on the railroad. Mr. Williamson, her husband, is out there now, has been there near 3 months, getting the place ready for my daughter. I feel deserted, it was a trial to give up my child, I do not know that I shall ever see her again, but if providence permits I hope to see her next fall. I would like to go there on a visit. I feel very sad this evening thinking about my first born, she feels so near to me, she has such a sweet disposition, a lovely woman. I love her so tenderly. I feel stript of one of my pleasures, but I have the comforts of religion. There are many sweet and precious promises in the Bible, to me, they come to me now like ministering angels to comfort me in my distress. The Lord is good to me, he comforts my soul in time of trouble, I look to him, and he hears my prayers, he opens up the way to a happy home in Heaven, where there is no more parting, no more sad farewells. Glory! and honor! to his name.

February 10th

        Some days ago my husband and daughter and my son George left me for Arkansa. I feel anxious to hear from them, I hope God will bless them and give them good health. I have a small family now, they have all left except Willie, Robert, Jimmie, Charlie and Anna. My children are good company for me, I cannot hear well, I am deaf in one ear, but I read and write a good deal. I find much pleasure in reading my Bible, 'tis a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

                         Holy Bible, book divine,
                         Precious treasure thou art mine
I do not see that I make any advancement in the divine life, but I look to the Lord for help and directions in all things. I want to be resigned to his will, and I give myself into his hands, that he may do with me as seemeth good in his sight. I pray to him to make me holy, and carry on his work of grace in my heart. Not every one that sayeth Lord, Lord shall enter the kingdom, but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in Heaven.

Feb. 16th

        I went to Union yesterday to hear Brother Bruton, he preached a good sermon. The text was found in Deuteronomy XXIV chap, 18th verse. I am so deaf I did not hear much of the sermon.

        I feel determined today to love and serve God, the Lord has encouraged me, because he has been good. I will look to him and trust in him long as I live. I have given myself to him, I pray that he may do with me as seemeth good in his sight. I have peace in believing in my Saviour.

Feb. 25th

        Since I last wrote a serious accident happened, last Saturday our carriage horse Mike kicked Willie in his forehead, he fell and was insensible some time. Our overseer saw it, the horse was sick, Mr. Dickens was leading him, and Willie struck the horse to make him go along. Will was behind the horse, he kicked Will down, Mr. Dickens thought he was killed, he ran to the house to get assistance, they ran to him and toated him to the house, he was quite bloody. The wound on his forehead looked dreadful, a gash 2 inches long, and half an inch deep. We were fearful the skull was broke, he vomited twice, from sick stomach, we sent off for a doctor, and Dr. George DeJarnatte came first, then Dr. Keen. Dr. Keen washed the wound and sewed it up, said it was only a flesh wound, the bone was not broken. I felt very much thankful when I found that he would get well, it was a shock to us all, but the Lord did sustain me and comfort me, as soon as I heard it, the children ran in and told me, I said I don't believe it, another came and said the horse had most killed him. I went into my closet, fell on my knees and prayed to God to save him, and help me to bear the trial, my prayer was heard, I felt like God would bless Willie, and so it has turned out. I had grace to support me, I was more composed than many person would be at such an alarming time, and Willie seems to be getting well. Thanks and praise to my kind Saviour, he is good to all and his tender mercies are over all his works.

March 11th

        I have just received a letter from my daughter Mrs. Williamson in Ark, says they are all tolerable well, she wrote a very cheerful letter it done me good. Mr. Bethell wrote the he would be at home in a few days, he left here the 5th of Feb. I have just seen the President's message, Mr. Lincoln, I think he intends to coerce those seceding states. I fear there will be civil war, and our happy and peaceful Country laid in desolation and ruins, every Christian should unite in fervent prayer to God, in behalf of our Country.

March 17th

        Since I last wrote I heard of a solemn death. Mary Elizabeth Perkins is no more, she is a daughter of Harriet and Pinckney Bethell, she died at St. Charles Hotel New Orleans of brain fever, taken Friday and expired on Tuesday. Oh! it is a solemn warning to us all.

April 2nd

        My husband returned home safe on Monday the 25 of March after an absence of six weeks, he looked a great deal better, had fattened some, he went from Memphis to Louisiana with his brother P. I feel very thankful for his safe return home, I had a trying time while he was gone. Abi is sick, Susan scalded her ankle dreadful, looked like it would mortify. I was miserable about it. My little Anna was sick most a week and Willie was kicked by a horse, we all thought he might die. I was very much cast down as my husband was not at home to help bear the burden, but the Lord was with me to comfort and support me in these trying times. I was sorely tempted nearly all last week, my soul was surrounded by darkness, doubts and gloomy fears, it seemed like the Lord had forsaken me.

        I wept and prayed to Jesus Christ to remove my burden of fears, and gloom, he heard and answered, last Sunday evening he blessed my soul. These words came forcibly to mind, "The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly from temptation." Just then light broke into my soul, I could praise my precious Saviour, because he heard and answered me, and gave me peace and comfort. Hallelujah! The Lord God omnipotent reigneth!!!

        I will trust him in every extremity.

April 29th

        Since I wrote a change has taken place. Civil War has begun, a bloody affair at Baltimore on the 19th, South Carolina took Fort Sumpter, and several men killed on the enemy's side.

        The slavery question is the cause of all this trouble, 8 Southern states have seceded from the Union, if the North and South can't agree, they had better separate. Abraham Lincoln the President is opposed to the institution of slavery, he don't seem disposed to make any compromise with the South. The Southern people are raising a large army to defend their Country and their rights. Nearly all the young men of our Country have volunteered to go into the army. My dear son Willie is a volunteer, and if necessary will go to aid in fighting for his country. I expect my son George will go too, it makes tears flow from my eyes to think of it, but I shall commit them to my kind Saviour, I hope and trust in God that they will get back home from the battle field, but if they should fall, I hope that God will forgive them and take them to Heaven for Jesus sake who died for them. I feel very solemn today thinking about the war, I hope God will give me grace to bear all the trials that are coming upon me, it is my fervent prayer that God will convert all of my children, and take them to Heaven when they die. Oh Lord have mercy upon us all.

May 9th

        This is a solemn day to me, my dear son Willy told us farewell this morning. The Governor of our state sent for 2 companys of soldiers to go to Weldon. I feel very sad in parting with my precious child, I may never see him again, but I commit him into the hands of my kind Saviour. I look to God for help in this great trial, I believe he will comfort me with his grace. I have faith to believe that he will help my son.

May 13th

        All day after my dear son Willy left my soul was overwhelmed with sorrow, my heart seemed almost to bleed. I prayed to God to comfort me, and he heard and answered, he did comfort me and give me faith to believe that he would bless my son, glory! and honor! and praise to his name forever! He is my refuge in the day of trouble, he is my best friend, I will love him and praise him as long as I live. I think of Willy every day, but I do not sorrow and grieve for him, because God comforts my heart, and has taken away sorrow from my heart. The Lord has said ask and ye shall receive. I do ask him to convert all of my children, and that his kingdom may come, his will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.

        I am looking for my dear George to come home, I do pray that God may bring him safely home to my arms.

May 18th

        The Lord has heard my prayer, and brought my dear George safely home, he arrived here this evening. I will praise God for his goodness to me in these trying times. I am so glad to see my dear son, he has been sick, is fallen off. I hope God will convert his soul, he is my first born son, named after his grandpa who prayed many prayers for him. I feel sad when I think about my dear George who will soon have to leave us, perhaps to join the army. I hope God will direct us and make everything work for our spiritual good. I hope God will bless my absent daughter Mrs. Williamson and bring her back to North Carolina. I hope she will remain with me until the war is over.

June 5th

        Last Thursday the 30th my dear son George left us to join the army, he joined the same company of his brother Willy. I suppose they have gone to Richmond, where there are 40,000 soldiers so 'tis said, it is a consolation to believe that my sons are in the hands of a merciful God. I hope and pray that they may be permitted to return home, if consistent with the Lord's will, I pray to God every day in their behalf, it is a trial to me, but I pray that our Country may enjoy peace and be independent. The thought of a bloody war is awful to contemplate.

June 18th

        My husband left here yesterday to go to Suffolk in Virginia to see my boys, George and Willy, he will stay 2 or 3 days, and return home next Saturday if nothing happens. I was much rejoiced to see an account of a brilliant victory achieved by our Southern soldiers at Bethell's Church in Virginia. The enemy retreated with the loss of 300 men, many wounded.

        The loss on our side was one man killed and several wounded, at the beginning of the battle (which lasted 4 hours) we had 1500 men while the enemy had 4000.

June 26th

        This is my birthday, I am 40 years old today. I can hardly realize it, time flys so rapidly, goodness and mercy have followed me from infancy to the present moment. I have been blessed, I can say today that I am in good health, have many kind friends, and all the comforts and necessarys of life. I have a precious Bible to read, can go to the house of God and hear my Minister preach the glad tidings of salvation. My hearing is bad, but by the aid of trumpets I can hear some of the sermon, enough to encourage me in the path to Heaven. I was blessed with a Christian Father, he led me in the way to Heaven.

        I am the Mother of nine children, two in Heaven now, I have one granddaughter and my two boys are soldiers in the army. My son Willy has professed faith in Christ. My husband went to Suffolk Virginia to see our two boys who are Soldiers in the army at that place, he got back last night, left our two Sons well and hearty. I was delighted to hear it, says they have plenty to eat.

July 2nd

        Mr. Dickens our overseer starts to the army today, he has volunteered, he leaves a wife and 1 child behind. I hope God will bless him and bring him back to his family.

July 12th

        I returned home yesterday from the Parsonage at Wentworth, I spent a day and two nights with Sister and Brother Bruton, our minister. Our time passed off pleasantly. Brother Fletcher Reid came to see us while there, he is one of my favorites. I felt it to be a privilege and an honor to be with God's ministers, and hear them talk. Bro. Reid spoke fluently about the war, he comforted me by his conversation.

        I hope God will be with our armies, and be on our side. Brother Reid sympathized with me in giving up my dear boys to go to the army, he encouraged me to trust in God, and commit them to God. I was greatly comforted by his conversation, my soul thrilled with tender emotions of love and joy. I thank God for comforting me through dear Brother Reid. I love him because he is an humble Christian, and because he spoke words of comfort to my soul.

        Oh! 'tis a privilege and an honor to be a child of God, to be an heir of a crown, incorruptible, undefiled, and that fadeth not away.

        My soul is happy this evening, Oh magnify the Lord with me and let us exalt his name together, he has delivered me from temptation. I want an increase of love and faith.

July 16

        I have heard of the death of Cousin Susan Jeffreys, she died of consumption at Doctor Williamson's, this should be a warning to us all to prepare to meet God. She went to the Alum Springs in Virginia in March 1860, in company with Adi McCain who was scrofulus. Cousin Susan kept pretty well until she took the measles in the month of July, after having been at the Springs 4 months, she was very gay before she was taken sick, attended the balls and partys and danced. She was a member of the Methodist church, but the Lord reproved her for her worldly mindness, she died in twelve months from that time she took measles. I expect to hear the particulars of her death soon.

August 4th

        I will now record something of the great Battle that was fought at Stone bridge near Manassas junction on the 21st of July 1861. Both of the armies were large, the enemys had twice as many as we had, they began the contest early in the morning and continued until sundown, for several hours it seemed that the enemy would overcome us. About 3 o'clock 4 regiments of Kirby Smith from Winchester came to our assistance, and then the scene was changed in our favor. After a hard contest the enemy retreated and we pursued them to Centerville, in their haste they left a million of dollars worth of property, guns, ammunition, Sherman's splendid battery, which was the best of all, and many valuables.

        The enemy lost 5000 killed and wounded, our loss was 2500 killed and wounded. We should praise God for giving us the victory, for his unseen hand did save us, from our enemys.

August 22

        I returned from our meeting at Carmel last Tuesday, it lasted only three days, cloudy and rainy weather hindered some. Brother Bruton preached some good sermons. Mr. Denny preached on Monday at 3 o'clock from the text "God is love," it was a good sermon. Bro. Winnick preached twice, I think he will make a good preacher.

        We had good congregations considering the rain and the war, there was one mourner, Mrs. Dickens, our overseer's wife, she says she feels better satisfyed. I enjoyed myself, it was a profitable time to my soul. I felt built up and edifyed in the most holy faith, I feel determined to press forward, though I expect to meet with some difficultys and trials on the way, but God's grace is sufficient for me, and in that will I trust.

        I hear from my two soldiers occasionally, they were both in fine health, and camped at a very pleasant place, have plenty to eat and a delightful spring to drink from. Thank God for all these blessings to my boys. I will praise God for his goodness to them. I am very anxious to hear from my dear daughter in Arkansa it has proved several weeks since I heard from her.

Aug. 27th

        For the past week I have been cast down with temptations, my spiritual sky was clouded. The Lord's face was hid from me, I seemed to be left in the darkness, but I continued to pray, and ask God to remove the temptation and comfort my soul. I searched the scriptures, for I know there are many sweet and precious promises to those who put their trust in God. I have been examining myself, I find that I do believe in God. I commit my soul and body into his hands.

Sept. 12th 1861

        Several days past my soul was in darkness, was cast down and tempted, I desired a deeper work of grace, I wanted to feel that God had sanctifyed me, throughout soul, spirit and body. I sought comfort in reading God's word and private prayer many times in the day. My soul hungered and thirsted after righteousness after many days of temptation, I at last found comfort. I awoke this morning one hour before day, I got up to pray. After spending nearly one hour in prayer, it was impressed on my mind to read the five chapters of 1st Peter, while reading them I was much comforted. I felt peace and love to Jesus Christ as my Saviour, I could praise God with joyful lips, light shone into my soul, I felt the witness of the Spirit.

        I want to grow in grace every day, and in the knowledge of my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Nov. 13th

        My husband left home this morning for Arkansa, to visit our daughter Mrs. Williamson, he said he would try to get back in two weeks. I thought it was best for me to stay at home with the children and take care of everything, and have the negro clothes made.

        I hope the family will keep well while he is absent, I shall look to the Lord for help. I have been tempted and tryed for several weeks, I have not been well for some time, suffering from constipated bowels. I hope the Lord will bless me in soul and body.

Nov. 26th

        The Lord has been good to me, he has answered my prayer, and blessed me in soul and body. My health is good now, I have been blessed in soul and body. I have just returned home from the Quarterly meeting at Wentworth. I spent a pleasant and interesting time. Brother Reid preached two excellent sermons on Saturday and Sunday, received one lady into the church, and baptized Sister Bruton's baby, named it John Fletcher. I met with several kind, Christian friends, enjoyed myself very much, thanks and praise to our Heavenly Father. I pray that God will make me pure in heart, I want to feel perfectly united to Christ, I have given myself to the Lord, soul and body, want him to lead and guide me, by his council and afterwards receive me to glory.

Nov. 27th

        I feel cheerful and happy today, I had the pleasure of giving something to a poor widow woman, the Lord has rewarded me for it by giving me peace in my soul.

        I will thank and praise God as long as I live, he is good to me. The weather is cold and unpleasant, I am sitting by a good fire sewing for the negroes, making their winter clothing.

        I have heard of another battle being fought on the Kentucky line, war is a terrible calamity, when we shall have peace our Father in Heaven only knows. The Enemy landed on the Coast of Georgia and took Port Royal and Fort Walker, they have erected their Flag.

Nov. 30th

        I was annoyed by vain and unprofitable thoughts for several days. I prayed to God to rid me of them, he has answered my prayer, I feel peace, I am encouraged to ask God for more grace, and that he may make my husband, children and servants Christians. I offer them all up to God, and beg him to bless them, that I may rejoice with them in Heaven.

December 6th

        My husband returned from Arkansa last Tuesday, he left Mr. W. and my daughter tolerable well, they expect to visit me in a few weeks, thanks to our heavenly Father for so many mercies.

        I have just received letters from my two sons in the army, they were both well and hearty, I thank God for his goodness to my sons, they have not been in a battle yet. Our country is gloomy and still threatened with another bloody battle, our sea coast is blockaded by the Enemy.

        We cannot get any coffee without giving a very high price, salt is very scarce and high price, if the War continues much longer it will be a gloomy state of things, I'm afraid the poor will suffer this winter.

Dec. 16th

        We went to Carmel yesterday, and heard brother Bruton preach from this text "If we confess our sins God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

        We have a new preacher, Brother Pepper, I have heard him, he is an excellent preacher, a pious and devoted Christian. The circuit has been divided, the River is the dividing line, about seven appointments on each circuit, brother Bruton is in charge of one half of this circuit, he will live in Madison, Brother Pepper the other half.

Dec. 23rd

        I went to Carmel yesterday, Brother Reid preached from this text, "If we regard iniquity in our hearts, God will not hear our prayers," it was an excellent sermon, it proved a blessing to my soul, it was a very cold day and I hesitated about going because my hearing was bad but I heard enough of the sermon to do me good. I thank God that I went, soon as I came home I went off to pray. I felt a desire to be made pure and holy. I had a remarkable dream, waked up feeling happy, and I still feel happy. I have the witness of the spirit, I know that I am a child of God, and on my way to Heaven. I will praise God as long as I live, for the Lord God is my sun and shield, he will give grace and glory, and no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.

December 25

        This is Christmas day, a beautiful day but very cold, how different this Christmas from last, now our Country is filled with armies to defend our country from the Northern army, many bloody battles have been fought, hundreds have been killed on both sides, and a great many soldiers have died in the camp from disease and want of attention while sick, it is sad to contemplate, perhaps the Lord is chastising his church, I believe he permits it for our good.

        I have two sons in the army, they have enjoyed fine health, the Lord has blessed them, I thank and praise him for it. I hope and pray that they may get home safe to my arms.

        I have enjoyed peace of mind and heart for a month, the Lord has comforted me, I feel happy in Jesus.

January 1st 1862

        New Year's day. And I live to see another year, I have had some trials last year, my two sons George and Willie left me for the war. They joined the army for twelve months, but the Lord has been with them, and gave them excellent health and every comfort, while many poor soldiers have sickened and died, my sons have been spared to enjoy good health. I had another trial last year. My dear Daughter Mrs. Williamson left us for Arkansa, her new home, she left here in Feb. but the Lord has been with her and blessed her and family, she and all the family nearly have had chills, but no deaths except old Wlijah an old man. I expect my daughter to see me in Feb. I pray that God may enable her to come to my arms.

        The Lord has been very good to me the past year, I have had good health, and all my children and servants have had good health, and I have enjoyed myself at times, had some refreshing seasons for the Lord. I will praise the Lord for his goodness to me and my family, I will now, on this new years day renew my covenant with God my Saviour. I give myself to him, and pray that I may spend this year to his honor and glory, and that I may live to be useful and happy!!

January 8th

        We are having some cold weather now, I often think of the Soldiers, some of them in cloth tents. I hope and pray that God may bless them, and that we may soon have peace restored to our unhappy Country, war is a dreadful calamity, but it will all work out for good to our country.

        I have commenced again to read the Bible regularly through, I read 4 chapters every day, I have set times for private prayer, it is a privilege which I enjoy, I believe that God has commenced to sanctify my soul. I feel that the glory of God shines in my soul and on my road.

January 27

        We went to Union yesterday to hear Mr. Macneely preach, he is an old Baptist, he is a revivalist, a warm preacher, there was some feeling in the congregation. We are having some cold and disagreeable weather now, the ground was white with snow last Friday.

        There was a bloody battle in Kentucky on the 19th of this month, the North got the victory, the South lost 500 killed and wounded, so the paper states. I pity the wounded soldiers, and the wives, Mothers and Sisters that lost dear ones in the battle. Surely God is judging his people, everyone ought to humble themselves in sackcloth and ashes, and fast, and pray to God to spare us, and save us from war and bloodshed.

Feb. 10

        The weather is very cold now, we have had a great deal of rain, the roads are very bad. I don't think there will be any more battles until spring, the rainy weather, bad roads, prevent travelling. The North have sent out a large fleet of 125 vessels to attack us on the coast, commanded by Capt. Bernside. I hope the Lord will be with us, and save us from our enemys. I expect we will have a good deal of trouble in various ways, and have to humble ourselves under God's hand before this war terminates. I thank God for his goodness to my family, we have been blessed. I feel today determined to love God, and keep his commandment. I have comfort and sweet peace in my Saviour, he is mine and I am his.

        I feel concerned about my daughter Mrs. Williamson she expects to be confined next month. I would like to be with her in that trying time, she is in Ark. I do not know whether she will come here or not, I do not know that I can get out there, but I will commit it all in the hands of my merciful Saviour, I hope he will direct. I pray that he will be with my daughter and give her a safe delivery, and that she may do well. I have faith in God, I believe she will do well.

        I hope and pray that my two, George and Willie, may get home safe and in good health in the Spring if the Lord permits.

Feb. 27

        This is a gloomy time, we have not heard from our daughter in Ark. in several weeks, we feel very anxious about her. I commit her to the hands of my Heavenly Father, I believe she is safe.

        My boys can't come home this week as they expected, they are expecting an attack from the Enemy. I feel concerned about my dear boys, I do not know but they may be killed or wounded.

        The Enemy are getting the advantage of us. They have taken Roanoke island and 2,000 of our men prisoners. They have possession of Fort Domelson in Tennessee, 'tis said our Forces have evacuated Nashville.

March 3rd

        I was much gratified last Saturday in receiving letters from Mary Virginia, George and Willie, they were well. I feel thankful to my Heavenly Father for blessing my dear children, my daughter writes that she cannot come and I cannot go to her, as the Yankees are getting the R. Roads, travelling is not as safe as it was. I long to be with my daughter as she expects to be confined this month, it is a great trial to me that I cannot go. I have looked to the Lord for comfort, I have committed her into the hands of God, and I believe he will bless her.

        I went to Union yesterday to hear brother Pepper preach, 'twas an excellent sermon, had a good congregation. After sermon he held class meeting, 'twas a good meeting, I enjoyed it, my soul was happy. I was enabled to tell what the Lord had done for my soul. Brother Pepper is doing his duty, he is a devoted child of God. I feel like there will be a revival on his circuit, the Lord will bless his labors.

March 10th

        I have heard of the death of aunt Martha Courts, she died in the faith, has gone home to Jesus Christ.

        This is a very gloomy time, we are daily expecting another terrible battle near Suffolk, it makes my heart sad to think of the time when my sons will march to the battle field and be exposed to the balls and fire of the Enemy, but I have prayed to God to cover their heads in the day of battle, and that their lives may be spared if it is his will, if it should be God's will for them to fall on the battle field, I hope he will send his angel to comfort them and help them, and if they die, to bear their souls to Heaven. Oh! this is a dark and trying time. Mary Virginia my daughter expects to be confined in a few days. I know she feels sad as the Yankees are not very far from where she is but I believe God will take care of her, she is safe and will do well. I have more fears for my sons who are exposed to the dangers of war. Lord, increase my faith for my children. I do believe if either of them die from wounds received in the battle, God for Christ sake will forgive their sins and take them home to Heaven. Thank God for giving me such faith. My neighbors are all in distress, their sons are going to the army in a few days. Green Daniel, Charly, and Archy Watkins have volunteered to go. I believe every young man is going except a few.

        I think every Christian should fast and pray. The South will be over-run by the enemy, so it is thought by a good many. An awful time is before us. Oh! Lord have mercy upon us.

March 10th

        We are having some pretty weather now. A poor woman came here yesterday, she wanted some things for her husband, as he was going to start to the army on Thursday, he is a soldier. I had the pleasure of giving her something for him. I sent him a Testament to read, sent him word to put his trust in God. I gave her some advice, and exhorted her to seek religion.

        I feel cheerful and happy today, in trying to help the poor and needy I got blessed and comforted myself, my gloom and fears are all gone.

        The Lord always blesses me when I try to keep his commandments. I sent two Testaments to the Soldiers this morning to take with them when they go to the army, I have two more that I wish to give away to the Soldiers. Green Daniel has volunteered and expects to start on Thursday the 13th of this month, also Archy Watkins and Charly Watkins, and nearly every young man of this neighborhood.

March 25

        The weather is cold and unpleasant, last Sunday I had the privilege of going to see a dying Christian, Cousin Fanny Price. I felt comforted to see her patience and resignation under her severe sufferings, she says she has four diseases, fistula, disease of the womb, stomach and throat, it has done me good to hear her talk. I was convinced that it was a glorious scene to see a Christian die, in the triumphs of the faith. My soul is happy I can praise God for his goodness to me, I feel that I am on my way to heaven.

April 8th

        I am able to sit up now, I have been quite sick, I was taken on Sunday at dinner time the 30th of March. I was taken with a cold feeling, pain and flooding. I was alarmed, sent for Dr. DeJarnette, he came immediately, but Mr. Bethell had given me 45 drops of laudnum, which eased my pain and stopped the flooding. I am just as weak as when I give birth to a child, it was a trial to my faith and patience, but the Lord was with me, and blessed me and answered my prayer every day, he is good to me, I will praise him with joyful lips for sparing my life and raising me up to health again. I am well except weakness, I did not feel willing to die then, I wanted to live for the sake of my family, and wanted to love and serve God better than I had done. I promised the Lord that I would be more faithful in instructing my servants and children, and fast oftener. I thank God for afflicting me, it done me good, it has proved a blessing to me.

        I have given myself to the Lord, he is mine, I am his, I want to be instrumental in bringing many souls to Christ.

        I am looking for a letter from my daughter in Arkansa, I have faith in God to believe that she will do well when she gives birth to her child.

April 15

        This is a trying time for me, I have not heard from my daughter, Mrs. Williamson, in six weeks, I expect she is confined in childbed. I feel very anxious to hear from her.

        My husband is away from home, he went to see my boys in the army near Yorktown. I feel very anxious about my boys, I would not be surprised if they were in a battle, suspense and anxiety is so unpleasant, but I look to God and call upon him to comfort my troubled soul. I beg him to bless and protect my dear boys, George and Willie, and my dear daughter Mary Virginia.

        I am cast down and sorrowful, I cannot hear from my dear children, but my hope and trust is in the Lord. I find some relief in prayer, and reading my precious bible. I will try and be patient and resigned. I believe that God will hear my prayers.

        I have just heard of the death of poor Billy Lumpkins, I hope the Lord has mercy on him.

        Cousin Fanny Price died 6th April 1862.

April 17th

        I feel sad and gloomy today, I have 3 very sick negroes. I think Cinda's baby will die, at least it is bad off. My dear husband has not returned yet, I feel very anxious to hear from the battle to know if my boys are hurt. I have not heard from my daughter in six weeks, this suspense and anxiety of mind is very unpleasant, but I look to the Lord in this great trial, I put my trust in him, he is my only help. Sometimes I feel comforted, but I believe all these troubles will work out for my good, it strengthens my faith in God, vain is the help of man.

April 18th

        My dear George has just got home from the army in good health and quite cheerful. Thank the Lord for his goodness to us all. Willie did not come, he has reenlisted.

April 27th

        My dear George has been sick a bed ever since he came home with bowel complaint, he is weak, don't eat anything much, drinks soup. Our servant Nat is very low with pneumonia, we are uneasy about him.

April 29

        Our servant Nat is some better, but cannot sit up much. We hope he will get well. Mr. Nubel Ratlif died last Saturday with the Palsy, he was 82 years old, made no profession of religion.

        My dear George is still feeble with the bowel complaint, he is quite weak, eats but little. I feel sad and gloomy today, these times of trouble do try my faith, but I hope it will all work out for my good. The Lord's face is hid from me, darkness and gloom surrounds me, I cannot get any tidings from my daughter in Arkansa, have not heard from her in near two months.

        My dear Willie is in the army, exposed to the dangers of war, I have not heard from him in some time, I feel so anxious to hear from my dear children.

        I am just out of a spell of sickness, I have not recovered my strength yet, I feel a weakness in my womb, have to lie down to rest. In this time of trouble I will call upon the Lord, he is my only help, I pray for comfort and peace to my sorrowful soul. Our country is invaded by the enemy, we have heard of many bloody battles, thousands have been hurried into eternity. The enemy is advancing, and taken our citys and towns, the prospect is dark and gloomy. War, bloodshed, and desolation is before us.

May 9th

        I have just heard of a terrible battle near Yorktown, our loss is 1200 in killed, wounded and missing. The enemy loss is great. I am in anxiety and suspense of mind about dear Willie, he was in the battle, his company suffered, was cut up. Oh my Heavenly Father, help to bear this great trial. I am so concerned about my dear boy, I do not know what his situation. My husband has gone to Danville to hear from the battle. Oh! this suspense of mind is so unpleasant, I never had such trials before in all my life, I pray for grace to bear it. I cannot get any tidings from my dear Mary Virginia, if the enemy are at Memphis they may flee to some place of refuge.

May the 11th

        My dear George started to Raleigh yesterday, his health is better.

May 14th

        I have heard from the battle at Williamsburg, my dear son was not hurt, he was sick in the hospital at Richmond during the battle, he has got better and gone to the army again. I thank God for preserving my child. I feel like praising him today for his goodness. I have received comfort from the Lord, I am cheerful again, the glory of God illuminates my soul, glory and honor to his name.

        Doctor Baily was wounded in the arm, I pray God to restore him to health.

        The 1st Sunday in this month, Brother Pepper held a meeting at Union, the sacrament was administered. I was blessed, and have peace ever since. I have not heard from our daughter yet, but I believe that God will bless her. I have committed my children into the hands of my Covenant keeping God.

May 17th

        We have received a long letter from our daughter. Mr. Williamson wrote that our daughter was confined on the 14th of April, had given birth to a son, and was doing tolerable well. (William Bethell Williamson.) I feel so thankful to God for blessing my dear daughter. I had faith to believe she would do well, the Lord heard and answered my prayer, glory and honor to his name. I will praise him with joyful lips, if I had a thousand souls I would give them all to God. Oh it is good to trust in God, "I called upon him in the day of trouble, and he delivered me, now I will glorify his name."

May 23

        Mr. Bethell returned from Danville last night, brought the sad news of the death of Sam Pinck Moore, a son of Sister Mary Moore's, he was a soldier in the army 12 months, he was sick in the hospital a long time, his Father reached there a few hours before he died, but thank God he was a professor of religion. I hope he has gone to rest with Jesus.

June 11th

        This is very cool weather now, we sit by the fire, the 4th of this month the river was very high, the low grounds were covered with water, all the corn, wheat, and oats were under water.

        There has been another battle near Richmond, but my dear Willie was not hurt, he was not in the fight. I hope the Lord will bring him home in good health, if he lives I expect him home the 16th of July. I feel that the Lord is good to me and mine, glory to his name forever.

        I feel cheerful and thankful to my Saviour.

June 14th

        We are having some beautiful weather now, we are all well at home, day before yesterday I heard that my dear Willie was sick in the army. Dr. McCain saw him at the camp 2 miles of Richmond, I felt very sad when I heard it, he is sick with diarhea, and a very poor diet. Mr. Bethell has gone to Danville to hear from him by Telegraph, if he is seriously sick Mr. Bethell will go to see him, and if possible bring him home. I feel so sorry for him, he has a hard time of it, but I look to the Lord and pray to him to take care of dear Willie and bring him safely home. I pray that God may save his life and keep him from being killed.

        We received a letter from dear George, he was well, he is drilling the Soldiers in Raleigh.

        We have not heard from our daughter Mary Virginia in several weeks, I hope she will come to N. Carolina and spend the summer.

June 15

        This is a hot, sultry day, bright sunshine, just what we need. My dear Father died just 14 years ago this day, the 15th of June 1848. He rests in Jesus.

        I have been very uneasy about dear Willie because he was sick in the army. Dr. John Williamson is just from there, he says that Willie is well, thanks and praise to our God.

June 17

        I feel sad today, as I spoke too hastily, I am sorry for it, how important that we should be slow to speak, slow to wrath.

June 18th

        I feel cheerful and happy today. God has forgiven me, I have peace and comfort in Jesus. My husband starts to Richmond tomorrow to see our dear Willie, who is in the army two miles from there. I expect Willie home if God permits, the 16th of July. I saw in the newspaper that the Federals had taken Memphis, after a fight and some bloodshed. Mr. Williamson lives near Memphis, I would be glad for him to bring Mary Virginia here to stay until the war closes. I know they feel uneasy, but I pray that God may take care of them and shield them from all harm.

June 20th

        I have just received a letter from my daughter in Arkansa, she was tolerable well, Mr. Williamson was having chills. She has a son born 14th of April, named him Willie Bethell. I feel so sad about my daughter, the Enemy is at Memphis in 10 miles of her, I would not be surprised if they lose most all their property. I know they will feel so uneasy, but I look to God and pray to him to protect and defend my dear daughter and her family. I hope their lives will be spared that we may meet again is my daily prayer. Oh Heavenly Father, have mercy upon thy suffering people.

June 22

        This is my Father's birth day, he would be 68 years old if he was alive. I went to Carmel today to hear brother Pepper, his brother was shot through the hips in the battle, badly wounded. My husband is from home, I have felt sad to day. The servants have been stealing my things, I was fretted about it, and one of the was disobedient. I felt very bad and said too much. Lord forgive me for getting angry and saying too much.

June 30th

        Last Thursday was my birth day, I was 41 years old. My Heavenly Father has spared me for some purpose, to glory his name and advance his kingdom here on earth.

        I now consecrate myself and all that I have to my Saviour Jesus Christ, I am his and he is mine. I have been greatly blessed all along through my life, thanks and praise be ascribed to the Lord Jesus Christ.

        There has been another bloody battle near Richmond, between our army and the Enemy, 'tis said that the Lord enabled us to overcome the enemy this time. My husband has gone on to see what has become of our dear Willie, who might have been in the fight, but I have faith in God to believe that he is safe. I feel like the Lord will help him, and save him, because he puts his trust in God.

July 2nd

        I am very anxious to hear from the battle, I heard that we had gained a great victory, we must thank and praise God for saving us from the cruel hands of our enemy, knowing that in all probability my dear son was in the battle, I would not have believed that I would be so composed, resigned, hoping and trusting in God to save my dear Soldier boy. I am not afraid of evil tidings, my heart is fixed, trusting in my precious Saviour, The Lord Jesus Christ. I pray to God to bless my dear daughter, who is exposed to the cruel Enemy. The Federals are at Memphis, my daughter lives 10 miles from there.

July 15th

        On Sunday the 6th of this month I went to Doctor Scales to attend the burial of Wallace Scales who was mortally wounded on the battle field the Tuesday the 1st of July, he lived 'til Thursday night, he professed faith in Christ, and I hope died a Christian Soldier. I pray that this death may be the means of bringing all the brothers and Sisters to Christ. My dear George is at home in fine health, he expects to leave us Thursday to join the 55th regiment of N.C. troops. I will feel sad when he leaves, but shall commit him to God.

        I shall look for my dear Willie to come home on Thursday, I desire to see him, I pray to God to bring him safely home. I attended the Quarterly meeting at Carmel Saturday and Sunday, no feeling or excitement. The meeting closed Sunday, but the Lord blessed my soul, I received a blessing since I came home. I felt comforted while partaking of the sacrament, the Lord is precious to my soul. My soul was happy this morning, I will praise God for his wonderful love and goodness to me.

July 21st

        My dear George left us last Wednesday the 16th to join his regiment 55, he is at Kinston now, he was in fine health. I have been looking for my dear Willie home every day. I was disappointed, I received a letter from George, he said that Willie would not be discharged until the 8th of August. I hope and pray that God may bring him safe home then.

        I have many trials, cares, vexations, sorrows, I need God's sustaining grace to comfort me and give me patience.

July 27th Sunday

        I did not go to Church today, last Tuesday Mr. Bethell and myself were sent for to go to Caswell to see Mr. Bethell's Mother to tell her of the death of her daughter Louisa Sneed, who died the 11th of this month leaving an infant 11 days old, she left six children, two of her sons are in the army, how uncertain is life, she was a member of the Episcopal Church, professed a change of heart. I hope she has gone to rest.

        I have felt the Lord had enabled me to cut loose of my affections from this world and set them on things above, how important it is to live near to God, to keep ourselves in readiness for death.

        Henry Hairston died the 24th of June, youngest son of Mrs. Agnes Hairston, he was a soldier in the army.

July 31

        I wanted to go to see Mrs. Hairston today, but the rain prevented me. I have many little trials, sorrows and temptations, but I find it is good to trust in God, for in every trouble he has been with me, to comfort and bless me, it is my business to serve my family and prepare to meet God, when he comes to judge the world. The Lord has been good to me and my children, I have two sons in the army, they have been blessed with health, and kept alive by God. I cannot hear from my daughter as the enemy have possession of that Country, but I have faith to believe that God will save her life, her husband, children and Indiana too, I commit then into the hands of my Saviour, I constantly pray for them.

August 3

        Last Friday I went to Union to hear brother Pepper preach, his text was "By the Grace of God I am what I am," it was a good sermon. I heard and enjoyed it, 'twas a time of refreshing to my soul.

        I received a letter from my son Willie, he was well, wrote that he would get home tomorrow, I have not seen him in near 15 months, since he joined the army.

        I am looking for my husband home, been gone 12 days, I am anxious to see him at home. I can't hear anything from my dear daughter and her family, but I commit her and her family into the hands of my God.

August 6th

        My dear soldier boy Willie got home safe last night at 1 o'clock. I do thank and praise my God for bringing him home, he is in good health, looks well, while thousands of soldiers have died, some from disease, some by the enemy, my dear boy's life has been preserved by my Heavenly Father. Glory! and Honor! and praise, and might be ascribed unto Jesus Christ.

        My husband got home day before yesterday, had a prosperous trip, he bought a large supply of salt.

August 10th

        This is a beautiful day, but very warm. I went to Union today to hear brother Waynick, he done well, preached a good sermon. I felt cheerful and happy today, the Lord is good I will praise him with joyful lips, my soul is happy.

August 21

        We are all well except one negro child. Virginia's birth day, I can't hear one word from her. I pray that God may bless her and family, make them happy christians. I expect the Yankees have driven her away from her home, I hope these troubles will be worked out for her a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.

        My dear Willie is at home, well and hearty. I received a letter from my dear George, he was well, he was in the army near Kinston, N. C. I pray that God may save his life, and make him a christian. I feel today that the anxiety, cares and troubles of this life weigh me down. I have been cast down, I have many trials, but I will look to the Lord, he is my only help.

Sept. 14

        My dear George is at home, come to stay a few days, he is in fine health. Willy is at home too, well and hearty. I am so thankful to God for his goodness, my soul is happy in the Lord. We have received a letter from our dear daughter at last, thank the Lord, she was tolerable well, her husband and children well, as usual, they were at their home, the Yankees had not molested them. I was so glad to hear from them, Mr. Bethell speaks of going after our daughter and bring[ing] her to North Carolina. I hope and pray that it may come to pass, last Monday and Tuesday I was cast down, many cares and perplexities, doubts, and fears, no comfort, no peace, but I prayed constantly to the Lord to remove my troubles, he answered my prayer, and now for several days I have peace and comfort in the Lord. On Thursday night my soul was happy, I told my husband how happy I was, felt that Jesus was my Saviour, and that I was on my way to heaven. I will trust in the Lord forever, for in the Lord Jehova is everlasting strength.

Sept. 26

        My dear George left me last Monday, I felt very sad after I left him. I have been sick several days, depressed and cast down. I feel that this is the vale of tears, no lasting peace in this world, sin and sorrow wound my soul. Jesus thy balm can make it whole.

October 1st

        I have been tryed and tempted, and cast down for many days, troubled about many things, no joy. This is a world of tribulation. I feel some better this evening. I believe the Lord will bless me, but I am sinful and don't deserve it, he is able to save me out of all my troubles, for many days I have been in trouble, cast down, tempted and perplexed.

Oct. 12th

        The Lord has removed my trouble and blessed me. I have just returned home from Wentworth, I attended brother Pepper's meeting. I was there six days, and saw one of the greatest revivals I have seen in two years, it was a time of refreshing from the presence of the Lord. There were about 40 converts, 23 joined the Church. I did enjoy it, my soul was made happy, I felt like it was good to be there, it was what I had been praying for, what I had desired to see. It was a feast to my soul, thank the Lord, I will praise him as long as I live, and shall praise him in heaven, I hope. I have peace and comfort in my soul tonight, hallelujah!! Praise the Lord!

        We have received a letter from our dear George, he was well, he is about Wilkesboro.

Oct. 21

        George has come home to spend a few days, he is well and hearty, the Lord has blessed him. I must now record the goodness of God. We have just received a letter from Mr. Williamson, our son in law, he is on his way here with his negroes, he will go back after our daughter and bring her here in a few days. I pray that she may get here safe. I will praise the Lord with joyful lips.

November 2

        Mr. Williamson reached here safe on Saturday the 25 with his servants, he left Mary Virginia and the children well. They were staying with Mrs. Jones, six miles from their home. Thank the Lord I have heard from my daughter, she and the 2 children are well. This another evidence of the goodness of God.

        Mr. Williamson returns from Arkansa today and I hope will bring M. Virginia back with him in a few weeks. I feel more cheerful, I have had peace and comfort ever since the meeting at Wentworth 4 weeks ago. The Lord is good to me and mine.

        We received another letter from George this week, he was well. My family enjoy good health, all the servants. Some of Mr. Williamson's servants have the chills, contracted at Arkansa.

        The Lord is reviving his work at several places on our circuit under Brother Pepper, about 70 converts.

Nov. 20

        I heard last night of the death of Tomy Torian, I hope he was prepared, he professed religion when quite young, while at my house, he lived several years with me, after his Father died. I hope I was instrumental in his conversion. I gave him religious instruction with the other children. Tomy was about 11 years old when he professed. I hope he is in heaven. I pray for all the children, William, Jinny, Sally, and Lou, I pray that God may make them happy christians, that I may meet them in heaven.

December 25 1862

        This is Christmas day, a most lovely day for the season, it is almost like Spring. I hope 'tis a token of good, that the Lord is going to bless us if it is his will. I hope the war will soon close and that we may have peace. I feel today that the Lord is good, my soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit doth rejoice in God my Saviour. I feel peace and comfort, the Lord is mine, he hath done great things for me, I will praise him.

        I heard yesterday of the death of Mr. William McCain, one more saint entered heaven. He was a devoted christian. I had the pleasure of forming his acquaintance about 2 years ago. My faith in God is strengthened, I enjoy more religion than I ever did in my life, I feel that I am getting nearer my heavenly Home.

January 3rd 1863

        By the goodness of my Heavenly Father I am spared to see another year. The health of my whole family has been good, the Lord has blessed us abundantly, my two sons in the army have enjoyed good health. The Lord has wonderfully preserved them from death, thanks and praise to his holy name, for he is good to me and mine. I now renew my covenant with God. I am still trying to serve God, I delight in reading my precious Bible, it is a great comfort to me in time of trouble, the promises are so encouraging, I feel that I am growing in grace, I do enjoy religion. I have a peace that flows like a river, thank God for the great things he has done for me, and mine. I do believe that he will bless my children, my faith in God is strengthened. I have temptations, trials and sorrows, but he gives me supporting grace, in every temptation he makes a way for my escape.

January 4th

        This is the first Sabbath day in the new year. I feel happy today in thinking over the goodness of God in giving us his son Jesus Christ to die for us. Oh! what a precious Saviour he is to all those who believe in him.

        I had the pleasure yesterday of talking to a person about their soul, I hope that God will bless my effort and save their soul. I have not heard from Willie since he got to Arkansa, I would be so glad to hear from my dear daughter, I hope the Lord will enable her to get here safe with her husband and children.

        I have not heard from my dear George in several weeks, but I commit my dear absent son into God's hands.

January 19

        We received a letter from our dear George, he was well, thanks be to God.

        I heard yesterday the death of Robert Watt, only son of cousin Bob Watt. Oh! what a loud call to his Mother to be a christian. I feel like I am on my way to Heaven.

Feby 12

        I felt so thankful to hear that Robt. Watt professed religion before he died Jan. 26. Brother Pepper was to see me last Saturday, we had a profitable and pleasant conversation on the subject of religion, I have felt better ever since. I had been tempted and sad for several weeks, but the darkness is gone, I have light, strength and comfort, thank the Lord. Feb. 4th I went to Union Sunday to hear brother Pepper, he preached a good sermon, his text was found in the 4th Chap Hebrews, 16 verse, he held class meeting, I felt happy and enjoyed religion.

        My husband has been trying many years to sell out and move South. I prayed to the Lord to prevent it, the Lord heard and answered me, my husband has abandoned the idea of going. I thank the Lord for it.

        This is a beautiful day, the Lord is good. I feel cheerful and happy. I will praise the Lord for his goodness to me and mine, we have every comfort and blessing to enjoy.

April 6th 1863

        My dear George returned home safe two weeks ago, he is in fine health, this is another evidence of the goodness of God. I will praise him. I now consecrate myself to him, I am his, and he is mine, I want to do his will as it is done in Heaven. I want to be a submissive child, and when I'm called to suffer to be patient, and resigned. My soul is happy, praise ye the Lord!!

        I went to Union Sunday to hear brother Pepper preach, we had a good time of refreshing from the presence of the Lord, bro Pepper held class meeting, several got happy, I was happy too, thank the Lord.

April 20th

        This is fine weather. My dear son George left us for the army last Thursday the 16th of the month. I felt so sad on parting with him, but I commit him to the Lord. I beg the Lord to convert his soul, and protect and shield him from all harm. The Lord has comforted me, I thank and praise his holy name.

Sunday 3rd of May

        Mr. Bethell has gone to Lickfork today, I feel lonesome. I feel sick, have not been well for two weeks, I have constipated bowels, my little Ann is sick today, been vomiting, she had Scarlet fever this winter and looks delicate, we had 4 cases of Scarlet fever, Dick, Elick and Silvy. Our servant Bill is declining, has been sick ever since Christmas. Mr. Williamson's servants are improving, they all had chills. I feel sad today, but I will continue to look to my Saviour and I expect to be comforted. I am entirely cut off from my daughter in Arkansa, my son Willy is there, but I believe my God will take care of them.

May 15

        Our servant boy Bill died last Tuesday, was sick near five months. I felt very bad after he died, I could not sleep well for two nights. I have not been well for two or three weeks, my bowels have been constipated. I have been low spirited, my faith was surrounded by darkness, the Lord's face hid from me, had no comfort, felt like I was a poor helpless sinner, who deserved nothing, but I prayed unto the Lord to comfort my poor troubled soul. I have read my bible and found some comfort, and I do trust in the Lord, my health is better today. I have had trials and temptation, had evil thoughts, if the Lord were to mark iniquity who should stand, if it was not for Jesus Christ death and intercession I would have been in torment long ago. I have been led to see how poor, helpless, sinful and miserable I am, without Christ I am nothing, but he is all in all, we are worms of the dust, but to have all our sins washed away by the precious blood of Jesus Christ and have grace to help in our time of need is a joy unspeakable.

May 18th

        I feel better today, my health has improved, and I trust in Christ. I have some comfort. Oh for the renewing influence of the Holy spirit. I want more faith, more love, to serve my Saviour.

        I went to see Sister Robertson yesterday, her son Willy is very low with pneumonia.

June 4th

        I have been cast down some time, I have had severe and fiery trials, and temptations. The Lord's face seems hid from me. I felt very gloomy, the waves of sorrow almost over my head, in all my trials I have believed that God would comfort me, in my darkest time I continue to have faith in God knowing that he is my best friend, and I believe I shall be saved.

        Last night while conversing with a christian friend on the subject of religion, the Lord comforted me, my soul was happy, I felt lifted above this poor world, my sorrow is gone, my trouble has left me, and now my soul is happy, bless the Lord oh! my soul, hallelujah, praise and honor and glory be to my saviour! Jesus Christ!

        The Lord does not suffer his children to be in darkness always no but he will always in his own good time give joy, peace and comfort to do the will of God, and be resigned to suffering, trials and temptations we need much help from God.

June 9th

        We heard last Saturday night that our Son in law, Mr. Williamson was wounded, we feel uneasy, we did not hear where Willie was but hope that he is with his Sister. I feel cast down today, my way seems hedged up with trials and temptations, this is a wilderness of sin and trouble. Oh 'tis a good thought to think of our home in Heaven, where we shall meet with those we love, to part no more.

June 26th 1863

        This is my birth day, I am 42 years old today. I have been blessed from my infancy to the present time, goodness and mercy have followed me all the days of my life. I have had great religious privileges, and every blessing to enjoy. I feel happy today, I will praise the Lord, he converted my soul when I was sixteen years old. I had a pious Father and a good education.

July 29th

        There has been a great deal of sickness in my neighborhood. I have been visiting the sick, and I carry them something nice to eat, lightbread and rice. I love to visit the sick because God has commanded us to do it. I have been to Mrs. Griffith's, four of her family down sick with bloody flux, while I was there Sally Ann died, and I assisted in shrouding her. Lizzy died on Monday, Sally Ann on the day before. May the Lord bless that afflicted family. Old Mr. DeJarnette died last Saturday, I am sorry for his daughters left by themselves. May the Lord take care of them.

        We have had an overflow from the river, we will lose half our crop of corn.

        There has been a battle at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, great many killed on our side, we heard that Julius Ferguson, N. Strader were killed, Charlie Watkins lost his leg, Peter Scales died from his wounds. Green Daniel slightly wounded and a prisoner, my dear son George was taken prisoner. I thank my Saviour that it was no worse, I pray that God may save his life and grant that this trial may be the means of making him a christian. Man's extremity is God's opportunity, 'tis my daily prayer that God may convert his soul. I have examined my heart and I find that I do love God, and believe that I am his child, and he is my Father. I delight in doing the will of God. I take great pleasure in reading my bible and in secret prayer, but after I have done all that is commanded, I feel that I am an unprofitable servant, and only done my duty, I deserve nothing, and I have nothing but what I have received from God. I have peace and comfort, I rejoice in the Lord, my soul is happy, hallelujah. I will praise the Lord for his wonderful goodness to me and mine, I have faith to believe that God will bless all my children. I want to be kept humble and resigned to my Father's will.

August 18th

        No tidings yet from my dear children. I live by faith in the Son of God. I have so many answers to prayer, I feel encouraged to pray. The Lord comforts me, I will praise him.

September 16th 1863

        We have heard that our dear George was taken prisoner and carried to Johnson's island, which is on Lake Erie in the state of Ohio. I thank the Lord 'tis no worse. I hope the Lord will watch over him, bless him and bring him back to his home and Parents.

        We heard that our daughter and her husband Mr. Williamson were taken prisoners, but we will still look to God and beg him to save them. If I know my heart, I do love God with all my heart, soul, mind and strength, and have the witness of the spirit, with it I am the child of God. I feel that I am on my way to my home in Heaven, hallalujia! Praise ye the Lord!

        I have been to see Mrs. Watson, a poor widow lady, her husband died in the army. I tryed to comfort her.

        I went to see Sophia and Bettie De Jarnette, poor orphan girls, I pray that God may bless and take care of them. I shall try and visit Mrs. Mitchell a poor widow-lady, her daughter died a few days ago, she is afflicted. May the Lord help and bless all the poor of my neighborhood. I feel more resigned to God's will than I ever did, and I want to do his will.

        I have been to see poor old Mrs. Mitchell, she was sad, she has lost her youngest child. I tryed to comfort her, she seemed grateful for my visit.

October 7th

        We received a letter from our dear George, he is at Johnson's Island, he wrote that he was getting well. I do thank the Lord for taking care of George. No tidings from my dear Mary Virginia and Willie. I beg the Lord to bring me a letter from them very soon.

        My health is feeble, I have fallen off, was very sick Sunday night with pain in my stomach and bowels, indigestion. I have been living on milk and mush. I pray the Lord to spare me to see my dear George, Willy, and Mary Virginia come home. The waves of trouble nearly go over me, I am in trouble and distress, but I will look to God and call on him to have mercy upon me, and comfort my poor sorrowful soul. I have often thought that I would trust in God as long as I live, and in every extremity, yes I do trust in him, and I believe he will come to my help.

October 23

        Last Thursday the Lord comforted my soul with sweet peace in my soul, and on Saturday the long wished for letter came from my daughter in Arkansa, she wrote that they were all tolerable well, and Willie too. I feel thankful to my Saviour, my soul is happy, it was so refreshing to hear from them. On Sunday our meeting commenced at Union, 3 miles from here, it closed Thursday, it was a time of refreshing from the presence of the Lord. 19 souls converted. 1 hope 5 joined the Church. The christians were made happy, my dear Robert professed religion on Wednesday 21st October 1863, during this meeting. Oh how thankful I feel, what shall I render unto the Lord for all his benefits, hallelujah praise ye the Lord.

November 16 1863

        Sister Ann has been to see me, I do desire to see her enjoy religion. Dr. Thaxton brought all his children to see me last week, we had a happy time together, may the Lord bless them abundantly. I love my sister's children, Billy, Mary Alice, Pheriba, George, Sally Green have professed religion this last summer.

November 17th

        I have just received a letter from my dear George, he was well and doing well. I also heard from Mary Virginia and Willie, they were both well, she has another daughter. Oh! how thankful and happy I feel, what shall I render unto the Lord for all his benefits, to hear such good news from my children who are far away.

        I have just received a letter from my daughter written 29th of October, she was well, also the children.

January 1st 1864

        The Lord has spared me to see another year, goodness and mercy have followed me all the days of my life. The Lord is my Shepherd I shall not want, he maketh me to lie down in green pastures, hallelujah, praise ye the Lord. I will now renew my covenant with God. I am determined to deny myself, take up my cross daily and follow Christ, if the Lord will bless me and mine, and bring my dear children home, who are in captivity. I will love and honor him and keep his commandments. The Lord has been with me the past year, I think I have grown in grace, I am pressing forward in the path to Heaven. I enjoy religion 'tis my meat and drink to do the will of God, he has heard and answered my prayers. All things work together for my spiritual good. I have my temptations and trials and sorrows and cares, I expect to have them as long as I live, but I know that God's grace is sufficient for me. I have always found it so. The Lord has been with me in every trouble and comforted and blessed me and brought me out of many troubles, therefore I will continue to look to him with strong confidence and faith, he is my best friend. Sometimes I feel like he has sanctifyed me throughout soul, spirit and body. Sometimes my peace flows like a river, I have a sweet foretaste of Heaven.

January 18th

        Since I last wrote in my diary what a comfortable time I have had. Mary Virginia and Willie have arrived safe home from Arkansa, also her three children, Dora, Willie and Mollie. I thank and praise God for his goodness to my children. I will rejoice ever more, pray without ceasing, in every thing give thanks. The Lord has answered my prayers, hallelujah, praise ye the Lord, glory and honor and power be ascribed unto him forever, my peace flows like a river.

January 28th

        I have been sick several days since my daughter came, the excitement, and I have had a great deal of company. My poor weak body has suffered from it. My little grandchildren have been sick but they are better. My children have been sick, Annie and Robert have had dreadful colds. Mary Virginia has been sick and feeble, she was so fatigued from the long trip of 4 weeks. There is no perfect happiness here in this world of sin and sorrow, we are subject to cares, disappointments, sickness and sorrow, as long as we remain in these low grounds of sorrow. I have lately been tempted and tryed, I feel my poverty, helplessness and dependance upon my Saviour. I am the child of affliction, but I know that God has been with me, sometimes he permits me to see what a poor creature I am, so weak a worm of the dust, I am nothing, but Christ is my all in all.

Jan 29th

        I want to record God's dealings with my soul. My health has been feeble this spring, it was suggested to me in a dream one night that the cold bath was beneficial to a weakly person. I have been trying it, I feel a great deal better, I am strengthened, and my health is restored. I bathe all over in cold water every morning, I have had some remarkable dreams, some of them have been the means of comforting me. I receive them as from God, who does all things for my good.

        I have had great temptations and trials lately, but Jesus is my Saviour, he has kept me from sinking, his strong arm has supported me and kept me safe. I will say glory to God for his goodness and love to me, a poor sinful unworthy creature. I will renew my covenant with him, I give myself to Jesus Christ, and pray him to guide and lead me into the right way.

April 1864

        It has been some time since I wrote in my diary, owing to the scarcity of writing paper.

        My dear Willie started to the army two weeks ago, he left the 7th of this month to join Gen. Lee's army near Orange C. House, it was a trial to me, but I committed him into the hands of my Saviour. God is my refuge in every trouble. I pray that his life may be preserved.

        I have not heard from George and Mr. Williamson since Feb they were well. We are looking for them home as there will be an exchange of prisoners. I thank the Lord for his goodness to my dear sons in the army.

        My dear daughter has professed religion, speaks of joining the Episcopal church, I am sorry, it grieves me to think of it. I would be glad for her to be with me and join the Methodists, but I pray that the Lord's will may be done.

        The Lord permits me to pass through many trials, I hope that I am growing in grace. I intend to labor for my Lord and Master.

May 9th 1864

        I intend to point my children and servants to the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world, it is my prayer that God would make me holy in heart and life.

        I went to Union a few days ago to hear our dear Minister, brother Gannon, he is an able preacher. Oh how it grieves me that I cannot hear him, I am so deaf in one ear. I am the child of affliction. I have lately passed through a fiery trial, it was my constant prayer that God would give me grace to bear with meekness and patience all that he might see fit for me. I have been greatly tempted and cast down for many days, but 'tis all for the best. My Saviour designs to make me holy I give myself into his gracious hands, and pray that I may be able to do his blessed will.

        I was 43 years old last Sunday, the Lord has spared my life, I hope for some good. Goodness and mercy have followed me all the days of my life, though I have had some fiery trials, and passed through deep waters, yet I have always found God's grace sufficient for every extremity, he has always been with me, and comforted me in all my trials. I will praise him for his wonderful goodness to me, who am so unworthy. I was greatly blessed in my childhood, for I had a good pious Father who led me in the way to Heaven. I had the advantage of a good christian education, eternity will show the great blessing of a pious parents.

        I was converted and joined the church when I was 16 years old. I have grown in grace, God has given me strong faith, he has answered my prayers. I thank and praise him. Hallelujah for the Lord will reign 'til all enemies are put under his feet.

May 9th 1864

        We have received two letters from Willie since he left for the army, he was doing well. I received a letter from George who is at Johnson's island, he was quite well. Mr. Williamson was well, thank the Lord for all his mercies.

June 28th

        Since I last wrote we have had a death in our family. Mollie Weldon, my little grandaughter died on the 2nd of June, her bowels and lungs were diseased, she was about 9 months old, a bright and lovely babe, one of the sweetest buds of promise. We miss her, but we have another angel in Heaven to praise God, our blessed Saviour. May the Lord help us all to meet Mollie Weldon in Heaven.

        Last Sunday was my birth day, I was 43 years old, and now as I enter my 44 year I will renew my covenant with God. I now consecrate myself and all that I have to his service. I am the Lord's and he is my Saviour. I will love and serve him as long as I live, hope to praise him in Heaven.

July 9th

        Last Saturday and Sunday was our meeting at Union, on Sunday we commemorated the death and suffering of our Saviour by partaking of the Holy sacrament. I did enjoy it and the Lord blessed me, soul and body, my soul was refreshed, 'twas a comfort to me. Brother Gannon preached for us, he came home with us and spent the night, he is our minister, may the Lord bless him abundantly. My health is good now, thank the Lord. I will praise the Lord for his goodness to me, my children all tolerable well.

August 10th 1864

        I have been to Person and spent several days very pleasantly with the children of my departed Sister Cornelia Thaxton. I feel that the Lord has blessed them for the sake of their angel Mother, the Lord will provide for them. I believe, I pray that they make shining lights in the church of Christ, they are all sprightly, promising children. I feel like their Mother is in Heaven. I met with several of my old acquaintances in Person, I spoke a word for Christ, I told them what the Lord has done for my soul. I done it in order to stir them up to walk in the way to Heaven, my soul was happy.

        Willie Robertson died last night at 10 o'clock. Brother Gannon will preach his funeral at Union tomorrow. I hope this affliction will be sanctified to the good of his parents. We all have to be corrected and chastened to make us humble. The Lord is judging his people, he turneth man to destruction and sayeth return ye children of men, it is intended for the good of us all. I feel more faith in God, I have so many answers to prayer. The Lord is the strength of my heart and my portion forever, it is my meat and drink to do the will of God. I delight in his service. I do enjoy reading the scriptures, and communion with God, who is my best friend, he hears and answers my prayers. My soul is happy, I will praise him with joyful lips, Hallelujah!!!!

        Our quarterly meeting was held at Union on Sat. before the fourth Sunday in August, Peter Doub was presiding elder. My daughter joined the Methodist church on that day and was baptized by brother Gannon. I was very glad and thankful to our Heavenly Father.

        My dear Willie arrived home safe last Monday from the army, he is in fine health, has a furlough for 30 days. Oh how thankful I feel. I have felt that I have been sanctified. I have the blessing of perfect love, I hope, my faith in God is strong, he comforts my soul and refreshes me by his holy Spirit, he answers my prayers. I feel that God loves me and owns for his child pardoning voice I hear I can no longer fear, I will praise him, as long as I live. Glory and honor to Jesus, he is my precious Saviour.

August 16 1864

        Last Sunday I went to Union to prayermeeting, but few there, when I went into the church I felt bad, but I continued to pray to God to remove my sorrow, in a few moments he heard, answered, and he did bless my soul. Oh! I was happy enough to shout, but I kept it in, I was melted down and wept tears of love and joy, and I felt like saying glory and honor to Jesus Christ, the Lord has sanctified me throughout, soul, spirit and body, hallelujah!!! My soul is happy, heaven is my home. I have passed through some fiery trials, many temptations, cares, disappointments and sorrows, but thank God his grace has been sufficient.

        This is my dear Mary Virginia's birthday, she is 23 years old today, I hope she will be a shining light in the church, and live a devoted christian and a blessing to her dear family & may the blessings of high heaven be hers.

Sept. 25

        Since I last wrote I have had a happy time. My sweet daughter Mary Virginia joined the Methodist church Saturday of the fourth Sunday in August, bro. Gannon baptized her.

        Cousin Lizzie Graves from Georgia has spent three weeks with me, she is my dear cousin by my Mother's side, she is a lovely christian, we have had some delightful fellowship with each other in talking about God and his love to us.

October 24th 1864

        This day twelve years ago my dear little Pherba died from the effects of a burn, she was burnt on Saturday, died Sunday night at 8 o'clock and Jesus took her to his bosom. I feel sad today, I do not feel well. I feel tired from a long walk I took yesterday to attend prayermeeting at Union, and was disappointed there was no meeting. I now consecrate myself to God, I beg him to direct me in all things. I look to him as my saviour who I know has been with me in every trial, and I believe he is my best friend who will never leave nor forsake us. All my trials are permitted to cut loose my affections from this world. I will thank God for them. I go to God as a weak and dependant child to it's Father, he knows our wants, he is able and will help us at the right time. I long and pray to be filled with the Holy Ghost, I shall expect it, for I will fast and pray for it.

Mary Bethell

Oct. 28

        I have been severely tempted and tryed this week, but it is all for my good, the waves of sorrow run high, I look to my Saviour, he is our only help, he will help me for I trust in him.

November 9th

        I am sorely tempted. I am passing through a great trial. I know that God's grace is sufficient for me, I will look to him to deliver me, my trials are great but Christ is a great Saviour. Oh my Heavenly Father, I pray thee to comfort my troubled soul.

Nov. 10th

        I feel some better today. I know that the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptation, and I will continue to look to him and call on him to deliver me out of my temptations and great trials. There is nothing too hard for the Lord.

Nov. 11th

        I felt sad last night, I got up out my bed and wrestled in prayer with God to help me. This text of scripture flashed into my mind "And shall not God avenge his own elect which cry day and night unto him I tell you that he will avenge them speedily," so I shall hold on to that promise and wait on God for deliverance.

Nov. 12

        I feel somewhat comforted today. I have faith in God, "I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord which made Heaven and Earth." "Bless the Lord Oh! my soul and all that is within me bless his holy name." For the Lord God is a sun and shield, he will give grace and glory, and no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly. I thank God for the hope which I have of eternal life, my soul shall make her boast in the Lord.

Nov. 16

        My husband started to the army yesterday for Goldsboro, he will get back to Court on a furlough. May the Lord make this trial work out for his spiritual good. I continue to look to God, I do trust in him, but I am tempted and tryed.

        I went to Union today to prayer meeting, it was public fast day. We had a profitable time at Church, good deal of feeling. Read the Bible and exhorted, we sung several hymns. I have received comfort this evening my trouble is gone, my soul is happy, hallelujah. I will praise the Lord forever, he has answered me.

December 12

        I feel thankful tonight to the Lord, he has delivered me out of this temptation, he has taken trouble off my heart, he hears and answers my prayers, I have peace and comfort, I will love and praise God for his great goodness to me and mine. My soul is happy, glory and honor to his name. It is my daily prayer that God would convert my dear George, also Mr. Williamson, they are at Johnson's Island, prisoners of war. I hope they will come home with new hearts. I feel more humble, God has shown me how weak and vile I am. I deserve nothing. I have been short of my duty. I can say "The Lord my righteousness."

Dec. 21

        I have had a trying time for many days, so many cares on my mind. It was a time of heaviness and manifold temptations. The Lord's face was hid, I saw how weak and vile I was in my own eyes, poor worm of the dust. I felt like I was in the wilderness tempted by the devil, about midnight I got out of my bed and got on my knees to pray to the Lord for comfort, help and direction. I received a little comfort. I felt like I was safe and secure in Christ, it is a comfortable feeling to feel like we lean on the bosom of Christ and rest in his arms.

January 7th 1865

        The Lord has spared me to see the beginning of another year. "Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life."

        I will now renew my covenant with God, if he will continue to bless me and mine I will serve him as long as I live. I now give myself and all I have to the Lord, let him do as seemeth unto him good with me and mine. I pray that I may be enabled to do his will, and I pray that I may suffer with meekness and patience all that the Lord permits to come upon me, for I know that "All things shall work together for good to those that love God."

        I do not regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord hears and answers my prayers, I have faith in God. Oh! Lord sanctify me through thy truth for thy word is truth. I feel my unprofitableness, I desire to be filled with all the fullness of God.

January 15

        Yesterday Mary Virginia and myself agreed to fast and pray to God to bless George and Mr. Williamson and convert their souls, and bring them safely home. I feel much better since I fasted. I now enjoy religion I can see my way clear. I have peace and comfort in believing in our Saviour Jesus Christ, bless the Lord Oh my soul and all that is within me bless his holy name. I shall wait on the Lord, and look to him to bring my dear George and Weldon home soon.

March 3rd

        My dear Willie got home safe a week ago, he has a furlough, 'till the 15 of this month, he is in very fine health I am thankful to God for his goodness. I have been sick for several days, I am better now. I am frail and delicate, I think my lungs are weak. I have a weakness when I take much exercise, I feel that though outward man may perish, I trust the inward man is renewed day by day, sometimes death and the grave seems near. I am familiar with the thought, but I feel so humble, I am unworthy and unprofitable, but I am looking to God, I have faith in him, and because he has been with me in all my troubles I can trust him forever, my soul doth bless his holy name, praise ye the Lord for he is good and his mercy endureth forever. I am praying to God every day to bring George and Weldon home to our embrace.

        Last Monday I attended the burial of Joseph Dicks, our neighbor, he professed religion before he died, he was a soldier, came home sick and died at home after an illness of several months.

        This is a dark hour for our country, the enemy are still advancing, taking possession of our citys and destroying property, thousands of our men have been slain. The war has been going on nearly four years, it is thought that slavery will be abolished, the enemy have been victorious.

March 7th

        I sit down to record the goodness of God. My dear son George has got home safe to our embrace, he was a prisoner near two years. I continued to pray for him, the Lord has heard and answered, glory and honor and power and might be unto our God, forever and ever.

Tuesday 2nd of May 1865

        I have not written in my diary in some time. I have had a good deal of company, over one hundred soldiers have stopped here to get something to eat, they were on their way from the army. Gen. Lee's army surrendered to the Yankees, also Gen. Johnston's army has surrendered also to Sherman. I think the war has closed, and we will perhaps go back to the Union. I feel thankful to God for his great goodness. I hope that we will have some rest now. The war lasted four years, thousands of men were killed. I expect that slavery will be abolished in a few years, I think it will be better for us.

        My dear George arrived home safe from Johnson's Island, where he had been a prisoner about 20 months. I felt so thankful to God for his goodness in bringing him back to me, his health is good. My dear Willie arrived home safe a week ago from the army, he is in fine health. Mary Virginia's health is better, I have all of my dear children at home with me now. The Lord is good. My health has been quite feeble this spring, suffered much with constipation of the bowels, and sometimes a weakness about my womb, I have been low spirited. The desolation of some part of our country by the cruel enemy. I have many little trials, my hearing is bad which causes me to feel lonesome, but I will look to my Saviour for comfort. I have been greatly afflicted by fiery trials, my Heavenly Father only knows what I have suffered. I have been sick and feeble for some time, besides many other trials. I have been brought very low. I feel very humble, the Lord permits it all for my good. I will kiss the rod, for whom the Lord loveth he chastiseth. My precious Saviour has been with me in all my trials, his arm of love underneath me, he has kept me from sinking, blessed be his holy name. My soul doth magnify the Lord my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour, in all my troubles I run to the Lord and his ear is open unto my cry, he helps he comforts me, it is a great trial to be deaf, but I know it has worked out for my good, it causes me to think more on Heavenly things, and I am praying without ceasing. I will now renew my covenant with God, I am his and he is my Saviour. I offer up myself and my husband and children, my talents, my property and every thing I possess. Oh! that I may do his will, and suffer with meekness and resignation all that I have to pass through. I feel like God is my Father and heaven my home, my soul is resting upon Jesus.

May 23

        My health is very much improved, I am in good health, I have peace and comfort in believing in christ, the sun of righteousness has arisen upon my soul.

        My children are all with me. Mr. Williamson arrived safe home yesterday after being separated from his wife and children for 19 months, and he a prisoner in the hands of the enemy the most of the time. I feel like the Lord in answer to my prayer brought him back to us. I do feel thankful to our kind Heavenly Father.

        I will trust him forever. Oh! that men would praise the Lord for his goodness to the children of men.

June 26th 1865

        I have lived to see another birthday, I am 44 years old today. The Lord has spared me for something, I hope he will enable me to finish the work which he has given me to do, I feel that I am an unprofitable servant have come short of my duty, I feel weak and vile in mine eyes. I can do nothing without his help. I am humbled under the hand of God, I will continue to look to him as my Saviour, my Lord and my God. I will now offer up myself to him, with every thing I have, I offer up my husband, children, servants, property, influence, all I give to him, and ask him to use them all, for his glory. I do feel that God is mine, and I am his, I hope he will guide me with his counsil and afterwards lead me to Glory. My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.

        My dear son Willie was united in marriage to Miss Mary Susan Price on Wednesday 21st of this month. I pray to God to bless their union and that they may be useful and happy and raise up children for God and Heaven.

August 7th 1865

        I will write this morning as I have an opportunity. I feel sad when I look at the church, almost desolate, some of the members have died, and some backslidden, nearly all of the rest worldly minded, prayer meetings, class meetings, Sunday school, all are broken up because iniquity abounds. The love of many has waxed cold, all are selfish and seeking their own. I feel like I am stript, but is all for my good to make us seek our rest and happiness in God alone. There is a good deal of trouble and some confusion about the servants, they are all free and good many have left. 14 of ours have left, but all of them left with our consent except 2 who ran away. I hope they will get homes and become christians. I hope they are on the road to Heaven. I do pitty them and pray for them. The war is over, but still there is much trouble and a great deal of wickedness, if the people don't repent I expect they will have some more judgments sent upon them, I look for it. Some of our prominent members of the church to all appearances look cold, lifeless, and backslidden. I sigh and grieve on account of it. Oh Lord pitty and save us from eternal death, there is none good, no not one, none but God, he alone is perfect. There is not a just man on earth but what sins, for my part, I feel myself an unprofitable servant.

        I look back upon my life as having come far short of my duty, many times done wrong and been foolish and disobedient, if the Lord were to stab iniquity I would not stand. I feel weakness, imperfection, I'm poor and frail, tending to the grave, every day I say Lord forgive me. I feel sad and repent every day. The Lord Jesus is my righteousness, he is become my salvation. I search the scriptures and pray every day, it strengthens me. I am constantly looking to God to help me, I have given myself to him, he is my Saviour, I bless his holy name. I have had many remarkable answers to prayer. Thanks be to him for his condescension and goodness to poor, unworthy me. I will praise him forever!!!! Bless the Lord Oh! my soul, and all that it within me bless his holy name.

        My dear George is not a christian, I do pray to God to convert his soul. 3 of my children are in the Church, I hope they are all christians. I pray to my Heavenly Father to bring them all in and make them happy christians.

        I have entered my 45 year. I give myself to the Lord. Oh! Father make me what I ought to be, help me to suffer with meekness and patience all my sorrows and afflictions for thy sake who suffered the loss of all things for me.

Aug. 7th 1865

        Our armies have surrendered to the Federals, the war is over. The slaves are set free. I hope the poor negroes will be learned to read the Bible and be enlightened and become christians. A great many slaves have left their homes and perished for want of food and shelter. 14 of ours have left, the most of those left here are doing well. Since I last wrote some more of our servants have left, 24 in all, one woman has died that left us, Dellah.

Nov. 13th 1865

        My husband left home today for Memphis, Ten. will be gone a month. Mary Virginia, Robert and George are with me, my dear Willie was 21 years old yesterday, he has a lovely wife, suits him so well. I feel thankful.

        I have a great deal to do since the servants left, but I have two women to help me. I can get along by hiring out my sewing. My children are in good health, my own health is better, I have strengthened some. I go to the Lord every day for prayer, I look to him and trust in him. I can say Lord be merciful to me a sinner. I give myself into his hands, and pray for strength to do and suffer his will, and be resigned to all my sufferings.

Dec. 1865

        I have been married 25 years, the Lord has been good to me, he has been with me in all my troubles, he has comforted me, bless the Lord Oh! my soul, and all that is within me bless his holy name.

        I have been a member of the church 28 years, and I am not tired of serving God. I am rooted and grounded in the faith of Jesus Christ. I have grown up into Christ, my living head. I expect to get to Heaven. I love my Saviour with all my heart, soul, mind and strength.

        My husband is in Memphis, he has been gone near a month. I have been in great temptations, greatly tried and troubled since he left, many cares pressing upon me, sick in body, but I continued to call on God, he heard and has helped me, comforted me, he has showed me how weak and vile I am. I repent, I feel low in the valley of humility. I am nothing but weakness and infirmity. Oh! how frail, can do nothing. God is my strength and righteousness, he is my salvation, he is my Father, brother, and every thing to me.

        My family are all well, all of our servants have left us but 4, they are all free.