This letter was copied from the original by Charlotte Bond. The letter was in the possession of Willie Dean Brown, now deceased.

Madison Springs, Georgia
May 30, 1864
My dearest husband
I seat myself this evening to drop you a few lines to inform you that we are in common health. Adeline has been sick a week but she is getting well. I have had a hard time this spring. I have had a good deal of struggles to contend with.

I hope these lines may go safe to your hand and find you in good health. I have nothing of much news to write you, you complain of me not writing to you, the reason I did not, James said he would and I thought it sufficient for I supposed he would give you the news, but here after I will write myself, then I will know when and how it is done.

I will say to that the prospect for a crop this season is very gloomy and c . . . .

The wheat is sorry but if nothing happens to it, it will make more than I once thought it would. Corn is very small. The birds has pulled my corn up and I have had to plant some of it three times over. I planted me a little cotton and some syrup cane. My potatoes is just now beginning to come up, You wanted to know if there is any fruit here. There are some apples right smart but hardly any peaches. We get plenty of milk now and our other cow will have a calf in two or three weeks. I want to know if I must put her up for I am fearful she will ruin the young trees. My garden looks tolerable well considering the spring being so late. Wednesday evening we had a good rain but it seems to be gone. I have a hard way of getting along. I would . . . . you came . . . . any . . . .

I still live in hopes of seeing you again. I understand that the factory is going to stop soon. James is going to Athens soon and I must try and send mine and get a bunch of thread. They are giving a bunch for 3 lbs of wool. I think I had better do that than give $65.00 in money. I have received the money you sent me, that is forty dollars. James promised to let me have some wool in the fall. Mother got a letter from Mary the other day. She says the women & children is leaving Atlanta and she is coming away to visit here. The stock is all alive yet and doing as well as could be expected not to have corn to eat. I have me a hog up fattening. I want to have it fat by July, then if you will come you can perhaps have some fresh ham.

The children all want to see you and talks about you every day. Little Robert grows as fast as you ever saw and is going on his hands and feet all over the house. He is as pretty as ever.

My dear husband you don't know how bad I want to see you. I see many uneasy hours about you and I hope to see you again ere long.

I hear shoes are selling at Montgomery are $30.00. I had a notion of getting me a pair. If you think it is too much I will wait a while.

You wanted to know who brought Nancy from Augusta. Mr. H. L. Sanders. Martha and Adaline send their regards to you and says for you to write to them. Your mother sends her best wishes & c . . . . . Now in conclusion I will say that Henry Deen is dead. He was killed the 12th day of this instant. I have wrote all I know at the present.

You must write soon.
Nothing more but remain
Your affectionate wife.

Martha A. Dean
To - W. W. Dean Transcribed June 2, 1990

Additional information provided by transcriber:

A. This letter was written to Thomas Wesley Dean. His wife was Martha A. Guest (B - 1827 D - 1864) daughter of Benjamin F. Guest and Mary Varner (B - 10/18/1805 D - 3/28/1889).

B. Nancy, Martha, and Adaline are her sisters and James is her brother. Sarah F. 'Adaline' Guest (B - 9/29/1835 D - 11/23/1903) was married to Nathan Collins Bond (B - 12/17/1824 D - 10/26/1894). James M. Guest (B - 4/21/1839 D - 7/16/1899) was married to Mary M. Bond (B - 2/2/1832 D - 11/6/1872).

C. Henry Dean was the son of James M. Deen (B - 5/24/1822 D - 1/12/1894) and Prudence E. Beard (B - 11/30/1822 D - 1/14/1904.

D. Thomas Deen carried this letter in his hip pocket and brought it home with him.

E. Sadly, the ravages of war took its toll on Martha Dean. She died within the year.

F. Thomas Deen married Sarah Elizabeth Stovall Beaard on December 10, 1865. Sara was the widow of John R. Beard. John was the brother of William Watson Beard.

G. Martha A. Guest and Thomas Dean were married March 29, 1853.