Digital Library of Georgia > Materials from the Hargrett Library > Robert Toombs, Letters to Julia Ann DuBose Toombs, 1850-1867

Document: 27

Letter: to Julia [Ann DuBose Toombs], 1867 Jan. 12


date: January 12, 1867
author: Toombs, Robert Augustus, 1810-1885
extent: 4p
summary: In this Jan. 12, 1867 letter, Robert Toombs, representative in the Georgia House of Representatives (1837-1843), in the U.S. Congress (1845-1853) and Senate (1853-1861), tell his wife Julia of certain letters he has received from his brother and from General Smith, regarding his return from exile in Europe. He describes the recent political difficulties of President Johnson that might prevent his anticipated return; he is not sure whether to go to Canada or Cuba. He informs his wife of his imminent plans for departure, discusses his health, and asks her to write to him at Havana as soon as she receives this letter. From Havana, he will go to New Orleans. He is content to risk prison by returning because he wants to see home again so badly. If New Orleans proves too dangerous, he will go to Canada. Toombs discusses their friends in Paris, the Breckenridges, the Burts, and the Lawtons. He ends the letter but picks it up again the next day, telling his wife he is prepared to leave for Havana. He updates her on his health, expresses his joy at looking forward to seeing them so soon, tells her he has sent some important papers to his brother, and quickly closes the letter.
subjects: repository: Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries
collection: Robert Toombs, letters to Julia Ann DuBose Toombs


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Paris Jany [January] 12th 1867
My dear wife,

After I mailed your letter yesterday I received my brothers of the 16th Decb. [December] enclosing Genl. [General] Smiths letter of the 17th Decb. [December] referring to a letter from the A.D.C. [aide-de-camp] of Genl. [General] Grant . This looked very encouraging, & again Threw me in doubt whether I should proceed at once to Canada or to Cuba. I should not hesitate one moment to decline coming home for the present if it were not that The letter of Grants aid, that of Genl [General] Smith & of my brother were all written before the recent events in the United States under which Johnson has dissolved his court marshalls & seems to have his hands full of his own work with the radicals, but even as it is, I am perplexed in the extreme, if you were only with me I should know what to do -- I should not leave Europe until spring but as it is, I have determined to go to one place or the other. Unless I hear something to morrow [tomorrow] I shall start in the "New World"

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for Havanna & N.O. [New Orleans] on Tuesday night My cold has Troubled me a good deal for the last week [deleted text: [illegible text] ] kept me the greater part of the Time in my room but it seems gradually improving & I doubt not but that a Tropical voyage would soon make it all right. By writing immediately on the receipt of this letter [deleted text: I m] (by way of N. [New] York) I may meet your letter at Havanna, and unless I get some Thing [something] to stop me at Havanna I shall Take the chance and go on to N. [New] Orleans. The worse that can happen to me is a prison & I dont [don't] see much To choose between my present position & any decent fort. I am now much worse than nothing, spending what little money we have left and without enjoyment & without benefit to my Self or any body [anybody] else, Therefore I can not [cannot] be much [unclear text: worsted] what ever [whatever] fate may befall me. I will therefore try to get quietly home & if I find I can not [cannot] stay There Then I will Try for Canada. I feel so anxious about you & the children

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that it makes me very wretched, I want To be with you at least long enough for us To see what arrangements can be made [deleted text: with] for Them. If Johnsons impeachment should continue I do not see how he will escape conviction, & then I suppose the whole south will be put under military law again & I will not be safe a single moment -- Johnson has no other chance that I can see at this distance, than to disavow congress & defend himself by force & it does not appear to me That is preparing for that contingency, Therefore I would not be surprised to hear of his [unclear text: departure] when I get to Havanna I have no news to write you. we go about as usual when you were here except Julia & Mrs B. [Burt] are both[deleted text: gayer] gayer & seem to be enjoying themselves Tho' [Though] at a [illegible text] gate. Genl [General] & Mr. Breckenridge are here, & speak of remaining in Paris until the lst of February. Mrs. Lawton is also still here & speaks of leaving her children & going home on a visit to her husband! And I should be suprised

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if she did -- She says She is impressed with the idea that she should do so, & you that is enough for her. They are all well, & the girls seem very cheerfull [cheerful]. I will keep This letter open until The last moment & continue to add whatever may occur -- Farewell for today!


January 14th
Dear Julia,

I have nothing to add but to day [today] that my preparations are all complete & I leave to morrow [tomorrow] in the Neuveau [Nouveau] Monde" for Havanna & N. [New] Orleans via Martinique, avoiding St. Thomas, tho [though] it costs me Two or three days more Time & makes me take a French instead of an English ship -- My cold is improving, but fully well, but my Throat, & general health is excellent. I shall have a long & lonesome voyage, with not much else to cheer me but That I shall find you & our dear little ones at the end of my journey, if I am permitted to see you & find you all well, I shall be compensated for its fatigues & dangers. I wrote my brother Today sending him some valuable papers.


Farewell to night [tonight]. I keep this letter open until to morrow [tomorrow] when I start for St. [unclear text: Nazaire] . Good night!

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