Letter to Eliza Corry from Mary Corry Cole, her sister-in-law

Atlanta

Jan. 26, 1862

My dear sister,

This morning I have sad news to write. Bro. Joseph is no more. After staying at his business til he was obliged to give up, he came home last Monday week ago and after much suffering, died last Friday about one o'clock. His disease was consumption with which he must have suffered greatly for a long time before coming home. We knew his health was bad in the summer and feared that he had consumption, but never knew his true condition as he did not write. I wrote and pleaded with him to come long ago, but to no purpose. He said he could not leave his work, and even after coming, he would sometimes say he ought to be there.

His trip here exhausted him very much and then the weather suddenly changed from pleasant to very cold, which caused him to take to his bed which he never left unless it was to sit up a little. His suffering was very great but almost to the last he seemed to hope that he would get better when more pleasant days came. I think he knew that his days were short, but don't think he thought of being taken so soon. Neither did we till the day before his death. He thought of much concerning the future and was very persistent and anxious to have his friends talk to him and pray for him. Uncle Berryman and Dr. Wilson talked and prayed with him. Whether he embraced the Savior at last, we know not. He could not talk much. Though judging from his great concern and the delight he took in listening to the given council, we do hope that he was enabled to believe in the Savior, who never casts off those who seek him sincerely. I do wish you and Bro. Robert could have been with him. He would have been so glad to have seen you. His expressions of regard for us all were more free and open than ever before and you would have not thought.

His affection for AMother@ as he always called Ma was very touching. She stayed by him all the time and when he could rest nowhere else he seemed to when leaning on her or with his head in her lap. He died without a struggle and all was over so quickly that I suppose he knew not that he was going then.

Bro. James came to see him last Monday and stayed only a day or two. He went to his work in Roswell near here til yesterday when he came in time to attend the funeral preached by Dr. Wilson at three o'clock. He left this morning expecting to be back again next Thursday. He is surveying a road from Roswell to this place. He hopes to get through this week. He is suffering much with a rising on his hand and says you must excuse him for not writing and let this answer for present. When I sent your letter to him, he was just hurrying off to Roswell and has been so busy and perplexed there and out in the woods.

He thinks if you and Bro. Bob ever expect to leave that country, you should try to do so now. The Yankees will certainly be there soon. And then what can you do but submit to their brutal outrageous acts? We are so anxious to have you come. If Bro. Robert cannot come, what good will come of your staying when the Yankees are in force there and all through the country and Bro. away from home all the time? Should he get killed or wounded, what chance will you or any of his friends have of being with in the course of a few months? We are anxious to hear from you and Brother. Do write immediately and often as you can.

Billy Glen is at home to stay and looks better than he ever did before. Give my best love to Mrs. Harris, Mrs. Drisdale, and families. I think of each very often and love them for their great kindness to me. Tell me something of each when you write. Where are William and Johnnie now? Hope, if they are in service, that they are with Bro. Robert. I hope that he will not put off preparations for the great change. Will sickness remind him of the necessity of it? He does not live the life he should live and I fear he has grown cold and callous. He and all of us will be greatly aroused someday...

(Do not have the complete letter.)