Friday, January 25, 2013

O'Bryan Washington, Oct 1894 Letter from Nashville

O'Bryan Washington was born in Nashville, Tennessee on July 20 1870 to Allen Hall Washington and Sallie Ewing Garner.  He was married to Martha Lanier Scruggs about 1910. Her mother Martha Lanier was living with them when the 1910 census was taken but she died later that year on Oct 26 1910.  The couple had two children: Martha E. and O'Bryan Washington Jr.

O'Bryan is listed in many Nashville City Directories during the 1800's and his occupation was salesman.  The 1920 Census lists him as secretary at a hosiery mill and in 1930 he had moved up to become proprietor of the mill.  He and his wife are listed in the Nashville Social Directory, 1911-1915 as living at 110 16th Ave. S.

This information comes from the Sons of the American Revolution Magazine, volume 17:
O'BRYAN WASHINGTON, Nashville, Tenn. (37451).  Son of Allen Hall and Sallie (Garner) Washington; grandson of Francis Whiting and Eliza Mason (Hall) Washington; great-grandson of Warner and Mary (Whiting) Washington; great2-grandson of Francis Whiting, Lieutenant in Thurston's and Baylor's Regts., Virginia Cont'l Dragoons.

O'Bryan had a good lineage and was on the Nashville social register but on this date in 1894 he was just another friend or potential suitor of Fannie Moran.  There are a few holes in the letter and some staining which make a few words impossible to fill in.    He mentions Mrs. Moran, that would be Fannie's mother Sophia Riley Gunn Moran.  Sadly she died the following year.  He mentions Sousa and he wants Fannie to attend a Musicale the following month with him in Nashville.  He also mentions a trip to Texas that he had been putting off but had renewed his interest in going.  Possibly because Fannie and some of the other Moran's were going to visit their Texas cousins.

The Nicholson
Rates $2.00, 2.50 & 3.00

Nashville, Tenn. Oct 28, 1894

Dear Miss "Fannie",

Mr.______ - he is to be pitied.  Him yesterday and he looks as if he has been run through a grist mill, and your friend ______ I understand contemplated suicide.

I have such pleasure of informing all their_____ of their youthful appearance and you can consider me as your debtor.  Please just draw on me for any amount and the draft will be honored.

Have at last met your friends from Columbia, and like yourself, enjoyed my chat with him very much.

Mrs. Moran will tell you what a treat you missed in not meeting(?) Sousa and I will not attempt to tell you how disappointed I was, when I received your telegram.  Thought you understood you need not worry to wire unless you were coming and when  boy came in, my expectations were above par, but in a few moments there was a decided drop in the markets.  There will be a very swell "Musicale" here Nov. 27, and if you are here, am very anxious for you to go.

For some time have been wanting to put off my Texas trip, but lately have for some reason, taken new interest in it.  Can you account for it?  Please let me know when you intend coming and please if you can, come this week, as I will be here, and I am anxious for you to meet some of my friends.  If the Texas trip should be abandoned consider yourself engaged of foot-ball Thanksgiving.

Love to your family,
O'Bryan Washington

 The letter is written on stationery from The Nicholson Hotel which was built in 1894 in Nashville.  It replaced a boarding house of the same name that dates from the 1860's.  The Hotel was later renamed The Tulane and has a very interesting history including the Tennessee Centennial Exposition and Suffragettes.

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