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Transcribed by Judy C. Ware
Judy C. Ware February 2009

Original copy of letter on file in RB Hayes Library in Ohio

Mrs. President Hayes

                                My Dear Cousin,

                                                           I enclose to you two real Continental notes for the President.  They were sent to me by Mr. John E. Nottingham of Eastville, Northampton County, Virginia (father-in-law of my son, Jo) to present to the President.   Extract from his letter to me — “Do me the honor to present to President Hayes the two notes enclosed, who if he is a Republican, his Excellency has made us a good president and I believe is a good, honest, and pure man - all this from an unadulterated, unreconstructed rebel.”  Now cousin, see what the same rebel in the same letter says of you.  “I hear on all sides, both parties, of Mrs. Hayes’ splendid bearing as mistress of the White House.”

     I enclose this to you to read, or to have read to you, and the President by one of your charming young ladies, that all may see the standing you both have in the estimation of rebels.  If I had sent it to the President in the multiplicity of his correspondence, he might have mislaid and lost it. 

     You ought to have seen the delight of Mrs. Ware and many others with the flowers.  She is nourishing some of them yet.

     Please make my affectionate regards to all,

                               most gratefully and affectionately       Yours truly

                                                                                            J. W. Ware

                                                                                 Feb. 8, 1880

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** Josiah William Ware Jr. was the namesake son of Josiah and Edmonia Ware.  He was known by family members as Jo, and he married Anne Nottingham.  This letter makes reference to John E. Nottingham who was her father and Jo’s father-in-law.

*** On at least one occasion, Mrs. Hayes (Lucy Ware Webb Hayes) sent a gift of flowers to Edmonia that she treasured.  There are several other letters making mention of these flowers.  Mrs. Hayes was the cousin of Josiah Ware.


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This site maintained by John Reagan and last updated July 18, 2009