Mobile Dec 4th 1860
Your letter had just arrived, and as Mother is writing to you I enclose my reply. If you will refer to my last letter you will see, that I did not say, I heard Mr. Benning, told it himself in Milledgeville; but that it was reported I was married to the Editor of the World, and that Columbus people were visiting there at the time. Now Aunt, Cousin Mary Anne Williams said, that "Mr. Benning told her Augusta Evans was going to marry a Black Republican Editor." He told her so in Columbus, when she went over to see you all immediately after you came from Virginia Springs; and knowing that Charley Williams was in Milledgeville I knew of course she told him what Mr. Benning told her; and thus the report was spread in Milledgeville. It makes no difference to me whether he told it in Milledgeville himself or to people in Columbus who circulated it. Mr. Benning might have known that when he told Cousin Mary Anne I was "going to marry a Black Republican" he might just as well have put it in the newspapers at once. It has all come from what he told her, and knowing that Charley Williams was in Milledgville, I knew of course he or someone else to whom she told it, had set the report afloat. If Mr. Benning had not been informed of the matter in sacred confidence I should have no right to complain. When I wrote to you I know he had spoken of it to Cousin Mary Anne, but I had no desire to implicate her, and should not have mentioned her name if you had not asked about it. She only told others, what was told to her, and it was not strange that the tidings of my marriage with a "Black Republican" surprised her, coming from a member of your family; though one would have supposed that common friendship, much less relationship, would have kept her from mentioning the matter. Thus as I wrote you it has come from Mr. Benning, though he possibly did not speak of it himself in Milledgeville. I repeat I have no desire to involve Cousin Mary Anne in the affair. As I never reposed confidence in her, I can not of course charge her with a betrayal of it. Please give my love to Uncle and believe me.
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Last Updated: 2/28/12