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Faw Family Letters

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Faw Family Correspondence Repository


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This page is a dedicated space to store photos of family letters as well as transcribe them for easier reading. Transcriptions strive for accuracy over correctness (misspellings and grammar are left alone).

Once transcribed, links can be added to mentioned family members profiles to facilitate genealogical research as well as biographical information for the family members.

Letters by Sender

Thomas Ambrose Faw

Dated 1850's

  1. Letter Transcription
    Date: Nov. 17th, 1852
    Location: Chattanooga, Tennessee
    Source: The Faw Family Record page 126
    Dear Brother,
    I arrived here yesterday evening safe and sound found Brother and Sister and all the family in good health. I came by Aunt Regans and found them all well. Aunt came down to White with me.
    I have enjoyed as good health as I ever did since I left home, been getting better every day. I had to have my carriage repaired twice which hindered me about half a day. I found my carriage and load rather heavy for one horse, with all the industry I can't use. I did not make over twinty nine miles in any one day. I found a good deal of ruff road and a part of it muddy. The weather has been generally good though pretty cool especially last Sunday. Today it is drisiling and raining all day.
    I have not as yet formed any opinions as to the country. Sister was very much rejoiced to see us had been looking for us but had almost given us out. She was very much surprised to see Rachel and thinks Ma did very wrong in depriving her self of her services. She was not expecting her at all. Fanny is opposed in going back to N.C.
    I cannot tell exactly when I shall start home. I made a contract with ______nett whech is gone into at all. I want strictly adhered to the bargin (was) This he wasts 20 or 25 dollars worth of goods for which and for what he already owes he is to deposit in our care for sale 45 or 50 dollars worth of Bed Stids. The Bed Stids even to be bought before any goods were taken away. He selected a pair of Boots a pair of Shoes and a side of leather which were put under the counter in a keg.
    With regard to the Pork business let me urge you to buy all you can at 6 cts. net. Make it a point to get all you can good pork (say Hogs that will weigh 150 lbs. & upwards). You can for goods or debts at that price and rather than miss a good trade pay a little money. Calculating men here say that they can make from 15 or 20 percent more by bacconing their meat at 10 cts than selling their pork at 6.
    We can calculate on getting bacon for less that 10 while the bacon that we would make would be much better than that we would buy. If you could buy hogs at 4 1/2 grass and feed them some two weeks you would have better meat perhaps and some what cheaper than at 6 net.
    I calculate Bacon will be twelve and a half cents or more in market next summer. I subjoin in a statement of a hog which White kept and account of to see how it would turn out. Wighted when killen 172 lbs. net at 6 per $10.32. The meat in the different stages weighted as follows.
    When Cut Up | When takin out of salt | When dry
    Jowl 6 | 5 1/2 | 4 1/2
    Shoulders 42 | 40 | 30
    Hams 37 | 37 | 37
    Midlings 49 | 46 | 43
    The offals wer 13 lb lard at 10 per 1.30
    2 lb. sausage meat 7.14
    Head feet and bones 19 lb. at 3 p .57
    This you see the offals will over pay for salt & trouble besides the difference in the cost of the meat. According to this turn out a man could as well afford to sell bacon at 8 1/2 as pork at 6.
    I may write again before I get home do the best you can and take care of yourselves.
    Yours Truly,
    Thos A Faw
    George P Faw Esq.
    Jefferson N.C. via Taylorsville Tenn.
    Research Comments:
    • There are several individuals mentioned that do not have WikiTree profiles.
    • It is not clear if White refers to a location, business, person, and perhaps even his Sister whose married name is White.
    • It is also not clear to which Sister is being referred to in the letter. More research is needed.

Dated 1860's

  1. Letter Transcription
    Date: Dec 1st, 1861
    Location: Haynesville, Tennessee
    Source: The Faw Family Record page 127
    Dear Father,
    I write to give you a letter of passing events--Col Robert Vance 29th N.C. Regiment arrived here last night 1,000 strong except a few sick. This Regt is from Yancy Buncomb and West of the Blue Ridge. This morning they have orders to go below immediately and that they are fighting in Cooke County. This order they are now preparing to execute leaving their baggage and a guard to this place. I don't think they will get a fight but--that it will be more likely as it has been in Carter. I do not think we are out of the woods yet but that the Union forces above here would rise again if they could get any rendering of their arms as much as they can.
    Carrie and Sallie have both been very sick but are better now. I have a great desire to relinquish keeping house here for the season but don't know what is best to do. It is hard to try to go ahead and may be worse to stop. On the one hand I fear Carrie is not able to stand the fatigue and excitement. On the other our house and furniture might be seized and put to use of whoever might be in military possession of the place.
    Our hogs seem to be fattening finely. I fear from what Larkin says you do not give yours corn enough. I think it bad policy to withhold from them what they will cram down. My experience is thy will eat less and fatten faster.
    I fear it will be difficult to procure salt. I have not been able to get any. We have depended on the R. Road and it is not dependable now. If you could manage any shift to get same, do so. You might perhaps by wagon going from the neighborhood. The cost is not so much an object.
    Our N.C. Volunteers are a stout looking set of men and appear anxious for a fight.
    T. A. Faw
  2. Letter Transcription
    Date: Feby. 23rd, 1862
    Location: Taylorsville, Tennessee
    Source: The Faw Family Record page 127
    My dear Wife,
    Amid the excitement and uncertainty of the times my thoughts continually to thee with much love and solicitude--how much happier I feel like I would be if you and our dear little Sallie were at home and in health with me this beautiful Sabath morning.
    Our home in my thoughts coupled with yourself and our little one is the dearest place on earth to me--but for the sake of your health, happiness and safety I am willing to forego the pleasures of a home for a season. That our home may be occupied by an unbidden stranger and spoiled and plundered by the enemy of our country is a distressing thought to me. That a cruel soldiery should lay ruthless hands on anything (however small the intrinsic value) that is Carries, that is sacred to me by being hers, it seems to me it would be more than I could bear. I pray to God to shield us from these impending calamities. We may not be over-run by the enemy, if we are things may not be so bad as we might anticipate. I hope not, do not be alarmed. We are not looking for the enemy in this section immediately. There are many strong barriers for them to overcome yet, but there is danger that this may become the battle ground before the war is ended. Perhaps next summer--although the Confederates had had severe reverses and bad management for the past few weeks. They have no idea of being whipt yet. Up to last accounts nashville had not yet been taken possession of the Federals, but supposed they would do so soon.
    Our forces are congregating at Murfeesboro. General Critendum's division is there. Sergant Jas. King of Capt. Faw's Co. arrived at this place from there last night. King is sick. He left the Co. last Thursday. Bro George is well. He says the soldiers are anxious to defeat Nashville. We are getting up a strong force at Cumberland Gap.
    The Rail Road is in a bad fix on account of slides. The trains cannot pass now from here to Bristol. We had heavy rain yesterday. Our creek was higher last night--than at the big fresh last fall.
    I have had no letter from you since the 3 Feb. I have to read that frequently. Would like to have a new one. I have wrote to you twice since the one by Mr. Sapp. Once before I started to Chattanooga, once since my return. Hope you received them. Please excuse the envelope of the last one. The cars here and no envelope so I had to use a second hand one.
    I received a letter from Bro _______ which gave me the satisfactory information of "all's well". If I can do anything for him I will.
    Now did Noah succeed in his trip to Charlotte? I spect he would not find much difficulty getting shut of his funds if he could find anything he was selling to invest in. I would like to see Coz. Isaac very much. Hope he will get home soon and call on the way and see us.
    I have just returned from a walk. Mr. Summers and myself went opposite Mrs. L. C. Hapis would have gone to the house but the creek was too full to cross.
    Miss Julia Reeves is staying at our house, that is at Mr. Millers for several days. Mr. Range is with me in the store. Boards at Mr. Johnson's. Don't need anyone only when I want to go away.
    All things else in our little village is just as you left them. So far as I know. I forgot, the widow Hale has moved into the Wheeler House. Mr. E.W. King has bought the Wheeler's old stock of goods and put some of his own with them and is holding forth at Wheelers old stand.
    In my trip to Chattanooga I invested near $3,000, as follows; one bale domestic at 25 cents, two bales cotton yarn at at the rate of $2.15 a bunch, four bales raw cotton at 8 cents per lb., five H has and 2 bels sugar at 8 1/2 to 9 1/2 cents per lb. 16 pc. English prints 7/8 wide at 37 1/2 cents per yd., a few small articles and the balance in tobacco.
    I would prefer good tobacco at the right price before anything else. To hold it would be as little likely to be (depreciated) is compact and easily handled and we'll be likely to go up when the blockage is opened.
    Please write to me at least once a week. I am lonely and the time seems long. You are differently situated in your Fatherland and at your Father's home and surrounded by all that was dear to you in earlier years. You enjoy it, and you should enjoy so dear a privilege. These enjoyments I have not. But the knowledge of your enjoyment is my greatest pleasure. Do not forget me. Let me hear how you are doing and how your Momma and Poppa are and all the rest and how is Sallie Fronia getting along? Does she have to take as much medicine as she used to?
    Kiss her for me and remember me.
    Very Truly yours,
    T. A. Faw
    Research Comments:
    • There are several individuals mentioned in this letter, most of which do not currently have WikiTree profiles. Of specific interest are Noah and Isaac.
    • It is unclear if Noah is in reference to a relation to the Faw's or perhaps his wife's family or some other family friend in general. The only known Noah Faw is believed to have passed away before this letter was written. However, no factual evidence has been submitted in support of this yet.
    • Cousin Isaac is unfortunately ambiguous given the size of the Faw family at this time. There are few known Isaac Faw's alive during the writing of this letter unless the death date is incorrect on some of the profiles (possible given limited factual information during this period). Just as likely, cousin Isaac could refer to cousins of his Aunts and Great Aunts families (which means a different surname).
    • More research is needed to further determine whom these reference are made.
  3. Letter Transcription
    Date: May 4th, 1862
    Location: Haynesville, Tennessee
    Source: The Faw Family Record page 128
    Dear Brother,
    I wrote you a letter just after the Battle of Shiloh which I fear you have not received, it may have been intercepted at Huntsville. I hear from your house that your letter of 22 and 23 all has been received, then I frequently see letters from some of the Boys of your company--letter to I.P. King is now in this office--I also received a letter from you since the fight. Through these mediums I have always been grattified to hear that you have general good health. The greatest blessing that any one in the camps can have bestowed on them. If kind Providence will continue the blessing and deliver you safely through Camp and battle we shall be truly Thankful.
    We were gladly anticipating the near approach of the term of your enlistment. It seems that the congress has extended your time at least three months longer by the provisions of the conscriptions act, but this act, if inforced will preclude the necessity of reinlistment. Our affairs at the farm by that time I fear will have gone as long as they can go without your presence without serious detriment. I have been nocking about a good deal trying to keep our matters my department in ship shape--how far I may succede the future only can tell. We still continue to have so much rain that it seems almost impossible to get a crop picked. I fear the wheat crop is in danger.
    Pa has been very feeble this spring he now seems to be improving some. The two black boys have had serious illness but are now getting about a little. The rest are all well--my family is still at Taylorsville. I suppose you have been informed of the addition of another daughter to my stock. I wanted to go for them but the weather, roads, health, war news has prevented so far.
    Our people seem to be quiet but most of them opposed to being forced into the servies. Rev. A. A. Blair has been making a company of volunteers at Jonesboro and will succede, I suppose. Jo Hayns, Hack Johnson, Jo Burts, Jo Lyle and Jim Duncan have joined and others will join. Old men A. Jobe and A. Hoss are both dead. We hear a great many war rumers, the latest one is that the Feds are marching on and are near the R. Road at Newbern--Martial law has made a great abatement in the consumption of Spirits which is a good thing that we may feel very sensibly. King and the two Baurnias are getting well. Malcom is dead.
    My best wishes for your welfare success and prosperity and safe and early return.
    Truly yours,
    T. A. Faw
    Write as often as you can
    Research Comments:
    • There are several individuals mentioned that do not have WikiTree profiles.
  4. Letter Transcription
    Date: August 7th, 1865
    Location: Johnsons Depot, Tennessee
    Source: The Faw Family Record page 129
    Dear Brother,
    In sorrow I seat myself to write to you. Your letter of the 18th June is to hand bringing us the sad intelegence of the death of our dear Sister, we mourn with you and sympathize with you and your little ones--the saddest calamity in life, the loss of wife and mother, you say truly needs no--to cause us to remember her. She was our dear sister one of us faces, now no more on earth, gone before, which one of us will be the next to follow. Oh that we could be as good and pure as she, then we need not fear to follow. Paul says grieve not over much for the departed, let us try to emulate her goodness and meekness and purity of thought and deed that we may be prepared to meet in happiness and glory.
    We can say with you may God Sanctify her death too our good--It is painful that she was called in the prime of life and so suddenly and to leave her dear chhildren in infancy, who can calculate the heights and depths of a mothers love and care and solicitude for her children, who can enumerate their loss, I cannot. May we not hope and believe that her Angel Spirit will visit us and her dear children and guard and protect them through this life of trouble and sorrow. We sympathize with you but at this remote distance together with the unsettled and torn up condition of our country we know not how to advise--and we go to with the effects of the war and the change of our surroundings are almost paralized do not know what to be at. We mourn for the dead but we must live for the living. We have passed through a great revelation, important and radical changes have been affected. Let us believe it is for the better, let us receive our chastizings in meekness and humility, letus be loyal law abiding men, let us go to work in earnest to try to build up on the ruins of the past.
    The great institution that has given so much trouble has passed way, let us ackowledge the fact and that in union and peace and the enforcement of civil law is our only security. President Johnson has given me special pardon for my political transgression.
    George has the benefit of the ________ yet men who have been cleared as Southern men do not feel entirely sure that they will be let remain here in peace and that it will be best for them to do so. Owing to the state of public opinion which puts such a heavy discount upon them though we get along peaceably and I am glad to say have many good union friends, occasionally a southern man gets a beating and occasionally one is killed. The election has just passed off very quietly, Col. N.G. Taylor is said to be elected from this district to congress. There are three stores at this place all near at hand. Tell Mr. Sapp I think I will write to him and give him more local news that I can in the tenents of this letter.
    Our _________ was unfortunate--a good deal of it was appropriated be the rebs, out of the 64 caddies there is not more than 15 or 18 left of the Miller Colling not more than 15 to 18 boxes left besides a quantity of other ______ what is left has not been removed yet--of the salt I swaped it at the ____ for two thirds the amount in our depot loose a portion of it was squandered for confederate Money a portion sold for green backs a small portion on hand yet. There is very little money here now what there is the merchants get for goods at high prices, a circulating ______ was never so scearce here, it is next to impossible to sell anything for cash.
    I would be glad to see you I suppose the line if it is not will soon be opened by way of Atlanta. We have the cars through from this point west, and from Bristol east, the Matagna and Helsten bridges are still down.
    Pa has been quite feeble this summer he is breaking very fast. My love and sympathy to the children, the same for yourself. Write soon.
    Yours truly,
    T. A. Faw

Research Notes


  1. Faw, Tom, & Faw, Lois, & Faw, Linda, & Faw, Amy. The Faw Family Record. 1st ed. Vol. 1. Tucson, AZ: 1992. Print.
  2. Faw Family. Faw Family Papers, 1750-1955 . SPC 976-0029. Archives & Special Collections, Eastern Washington University.
  3. Faw, Walter Wagner, et al. Walter Wagner Faw Family Papers 1819. Archives of Tennessee State Library.
  4. Faw Family. Faw Family Papers, 1817-1974. Print. Archives of Appalachia.

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Categories: Faw Name Study | Letters