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J[ohn] R[andolph] to MVB, 4 August 1828

Dear Sir,

A gentleman whom I met with here, this morning tells me that you made very minute & particular enquiries after me of young Mr Clark of Halifax during his excursion this summer so the north touching my habits and mode of life at home. To which I say, “Come and see.” Mr C. knows no more of my mode of life than you do, nor half so much.

My health has been so much worse than it was during the winter & spring, that I have not slept well out of my bed since the 2nd of May, when I reached home. Neither have I during that period dined but twice (each time here) from my own board.

I will promise you a well-stocked cellar, & a library not indifferently furnished, a stud that has not its equal in the U.S. or England, nearly one 100 blood horses among them ^a splendid^ yearling by Roanoke out of your favorite Wildfire, & “Topaz” a bay colt foal of this spring out of my black mare “Ebony”, that can only be matched by a bay filly, “Sylph,” out of “Witch” sister to Wildfire. I have two brace of gelding’s, 4 and 3 years old, and three pair of fillies same ages, (besides some twenty or thirty others) that are equal to anything you ever can ^saw^ me bestride.

I promise you an airy room, Radical, (blue grey gelding) & an English saddle and bridle; & Juba to attend you.

We are all here of one mind on the great question, but the pecuniary embarrassment & distress ^exceeds^ all description, & almost conception. It pains me to be here today & witness the effects of the times.

I am Dear Sir

very respectfully your's

J.R. of Roanoke.

Copy in unidentified hand.

Source: DLC Library of Congress
Collection: MVB Papers (DLC)
Series: Series 5 (1 January 1825-3 March 1829)