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Letters from Illinios to Dallas

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1 Letters from Illinios to Dallas on Mon May 31, 2010 11:53 pm

Posted on Civilian Yahoo list June 2009 by Hal Simon

Here is the text of the 'best' of actual my family letters. Notice the date as it is very early for the war scenario. See, not everyone in Illinois was a Lincolnite!


(The letter was written by James & Eliza Miller of Green Co. IL to John Nix & Sarah Miller Nix, of Dallas Co. TX. James Miller was Sarah Miller Nix younger brother. The second letter was written on the last page of the first one at the same posting by James Miller and Sarah Miller Nix mother, Mary Finley Miller.)

March 3rd 1861
Dear Brother and Sister,
We received your letter of the fourth of February last night, which was a source of great satisfaction, with the exception of your illness from which we hope you have entirely recovered.

We also regret very much to hear of the course your state has taken. Not that I am an Abolitionist or in favor of Abe Lincoln. I voted for Douglas as a true Union man, which I think any well wishers of our nation should do. I am ready now to bid farewell to our Glorious Republic. This is what all the combined powers of Europe have sought for from its very first existence, to get us divided among ourselves, and they have well nigh accomplished their ends. Did not their ministers in the council after the war of 1812 declare that they would not overthrow our government by conquest? That council was held in Canada. But for me to say that the South is altogether in the wrong, or that the North is altogether in the wrong I cannot.

The North perhaps is and has been trying to and has been infringing on Southern rights, but what can the South do to better the matter by withdrawing from the Union. There cannot in my opinion any good result from such a procedure. I do believe if persevered in, as I said before, that it will end in the destruction of our Republican Government and what else God only knows. Civil War with all its horrible consequences. I have been studying the matter over from last March, a thing which before I never expected to do, to turn my attention to politics, but this is a great thing that is now taking place – enough to arouse the most sluggish to thought and from what little I can gain our nation is going to be pretty well divided and that the matter will not be decided in a few days as some think or rather say. When the North sends men to subdue the South they are not sending men to fight the Mexicans, but to fight men in every respect equal to themselves.

Our State has held a convention which decided that they would not take any part in the matter. But our Governor is a Republican and no doubt if needed will endeavor to raise troops to go South and if so I believe that there will also be troops raised to stop them, so we will have it at home. I will say no more on the subject. I have said much more that I expected to say.

We have a very fine winter with neither very cold nor very warm. It is snowing today but it is not cold enough to freeze any. Grass is beginning to start, wheat looks very fine. We have corn in abundance, it is only worth 18 cents per bushel. Wheat is $1.00, flour from 2 dollars to 3 for the best hundred lbs., pork $6.00 per hundred, cattle from $15.00 to $40.00 a head according to quality. We have fair prospect of better times here if it was not for the war that is pending. Everything is plenty. We are all well at this time, as is also all of our neighbors. There is very little sickness here now.

I must now come to a close hoping these come to hand and may find you all enjoying good health and happiness. No more at present, but remains
Yours truly,
Jas Miller
E. Miller

Mary Finley Miller to John Nix and Sarah Miller Nix
March 3rd 1861
Dear Children,
Through the mercies of God I am permitted the privelage of having a few lines written to you once more in this life, which leaves myself and Cynthia in tolerable health - hoping when these come to your hand may find you all enjoying health and happiness.

Times here is very hard. I have nothing strange to write you. There has been great Revivals of Religion in this Section of the Country. The Providence Church has received into the church twenty -two or three members at the last meeting.

I cannot say whether I will ever come back to Texas or not. I am getting very old to travel so far a journey. I would like to see you all once more very much and I want you all to write to me as often as you possibly can and tell me if any of you expects to come to Illinois. With these words I will come to a close hoping that if we never meet again in this life to meet you all in a better and remains, Your affectionate Mother until death,
Mary Miller

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