6 March 1862: “We are now in the midst of a great calamity”

Item description: Entry, dated 6 March 1862, from the diary of Margaret Ann Meta Morris Grimball. In this entry, Grimball writes from Charleston that eighty-four of the slaves had left Grove Plantation and run away to Edisto, causing her husband, John Berkley Grimball, great distress. She is grateful that her sons could return home to be at his side and to scout for a place to remove to with the remainder of the slaves, and for her Uncle Charles Manigault’s unexpected offer of a rent-free house with eight rooms.

[Transcription available below images.]

Item citation: From the the Margaret Ann Meta Morris Grimball Diary #975-z, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Item transcription:

6th March

We are now in the midst of a great calamity 84 of Mr Grimball’s negroes went off all together to Edisto we think of course they are the best. Mr Grimball is quite unstrung by it. Fortunately Berkley can come to him and William is still out of Military position and they both can be with him. We shall perhaps remove from the City and Berkley has gone to look for a place in Anderson, or Pickens, to remove to with the remnant of the negroes. I hope Mr Grimball will be sustained through this heavy trial. John & Lewis are in good positions, Lewis gets 13 hundred dollars & John $15 hundred a year which supports them.

I was very much touched this morning by a visit from my Uncle, Mr Charles Manigault who offered me the use of a house of his with 8 rooms as long as I needed it free of rent. This was entirely unexpected.

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