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Brodhead & Smith
Vaughan, Warren Co., N.C.

W1567 TO DR. CALVIN BROOKS MCQUESTEN from Frank R. Brodhead
Jan 21 1886
To: Dr. Calvin Brooks McQuesten New York City
From: [Likely North Carolina ]1

Dear Doctor:

Now don't think that because I have not written before I have entirely forgotten you, but the facts of the case are these; that I am busy looking after things, around the mill and in the woods, from 7 AM until 6 PM and then in the evening our room is the sitting room for the whole family. It is not the time taken in writing but the getting at it that is the sticker. You see I have to go to bed at ten or before in order to get up and have breakfast at 6.30.

Now to answer your questions:

The nearest places of any account to us are: Warrenton the County seat about 800 pop. and about 8 miles west from us. Also Weldon about 26 miles East from us and about 500 it is quite a rail road center. The land around here and in fact all over the south has been neglected until it is in very bad condition. But I have seen some men who have invested money in putting land in order say that it can with very little expence [sic] be put in very good order.

I do not know what your questions point to but if you want to buy land here, the plantation on which we live and which our mill is placed is for sale and the family are very hard up. It consists of 500 acres of what is said by outsiders to be the best land in the County. The lady told me she wanted $5000. but would take $4500 cash. Now in about three weeks we will have our house done and will have all extra room which we will be most happy to have you consider as your own for any length of time or at any time. Come down and look around, take a little hunt and see me all at one lick. The Ducks are very pleanty [sic] on the Roanoke River about 25 miles from here and there are any quantity of Quail of a large size also numerous Hares, Squirels [sic] &c. If you come to hunt bring an extra gun along so I can go with you once in a while, also remember to bring everything you want along as there is no store of any account near by. You know I can get one of those cheap tickets from T.R. Gaines No. #1 B-way Room [Dd??]. I do not know what money you spent for me for Xmas but if you will let me know I will send you the money.

We are doing pretty well in our business and I think we must succede [sic]. I have no horse yet and cant [sic] look at it exactly as you do. We are 2 1/2 miles from the depot and mail, pay him $1.00 per month. We are cutting logs 1 1/2 miles from the mill and some days I have to walk back and forth 3 times per day.

Now it is late and I have still to write a line to mother so will close by saying that anything I can do for you or any information I can give you will be welcom [sic]. As I invite and urge you to come and see me. Will try and be more prompt with my next letter.

Yours respectfully


1 From the text, the location of the plantation is 8 miles East of Warrenton, 26 miles West of Weldon and also within 30 miles of the Roanoke River. In North Carolina, the geographical locations of these towns relative to each other and to the Roanoke River fit the description given by Mr. Brodhead.

2 Frank Brodhead was the owner of a hardwood lumber manufacturing company in North Carolina.

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The development of this website was directed by Mary Anderson, Ph.D. and Janelle Baldwin, M.A.
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