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 Family history; live a virtous life

  • » Date: 1880-08-04
  • » Subject: Family history; live a virtous life
  • » Written By: Rufus Saunders Turner
  • » Addressed To: Rufus Harvey Turner
  • » Transcriber: Pierre Babasin
  • » File # 2759

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Cheap Hill Tennessee
August 4th 1880

My Dear Rufus.

I had hoped to be in Nashville on your birthday, but was disappointed. However, Uncle Rufe ever tries to be as good as his word, and so he sends you some money. Spend it as you please, and when you become a man bear this in mind:

• Honesty, Economy, and Well-directed Industry can accomplish anything in season. The great men of all ages are monuments to this fact. My nephew, I ask of you for the sake of the love I bear you, and your father my oldest and much beloved brother, to grow up a sober, straight-forward man. Your Grandfather was named Michael G. Turner. He was the Soul of honor. Your Great-Grandfather was named Arthur Turner. He fell in defense of his country, in the glorious battle ofNew Orleans. Your Great-great Grandfather was named Thomas Turner. He died inNorth Carolina. Your Grand Mother was a Williams. Your Great Grand Mother was a Gleaves. Your


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Great-great Grandmother was a Peterson. Your Father had 2 Sisters & 3 Brothers.

1. Mary Ann Eliza Turner

2. Thomas Arthur Turner

3. Rufus Saunders Turner

4. Benjamin William Turner

5. Martha Elizabeth Francis Turner

Now Rufus, I wish you to keep this letter. Be Sure to Keep it as long as you live. I would give $100.00 for such a letter about my family, from some uncle that could tell me about them farther back than I can go. You will meet with your Kindred many times in your life, no doubt, and this letter will keep in your mind. Now Goodby.

Write to me as soon as you can.

Be kind and affectionate to your Mother and obedient and truthful to your Father. Always stand on the side of Honor and Justice: and hold yourself ever ready to die, rather than abandon the right. Love God and Fear nothing but infamy. I am your loving Uncle.

Rufus Saunders Turner.

Transcriber Notes

Received from Pierre Babasin via the Contact Page:

My Grandmother, Minnette Turner Babasin, (Minnie Maud Turner) was born and raised in Texas but her Grandfather came from Tennessee, one of the sons of Michael Gleaves Turner, and Elizabeth P.B. Williams. Another one of Michael's sons Rufus Saunders Turner wrote a birthday letter in 1880 to his nephew, (her father) Rufus Harvey Turner (my G.Grandfather). In it he primarily discusses issues of virtue and honor, sage advise for a young man, but he also lays out a genealogical path, that I have been able to follow, basically back to England! Many of the people in my letter feature prominently in the Goodspeed History of Cheatham county. I'm not sure why I am writing other than to continue searching for clues and making connections, and I also wanted for "you" to be able to see the contents of the letter and perhaps cipher clues that may help someone else as well.

My Great-Great Grandfather Rufus' oldest brother was Henry Williams Turner and would be 1 year older than Mary Ann...

It's actually pretty awesome that he did keep it all his life and pass it on to his son and on to my grandmother, and then to me....

On Ancestry.com, it's the "Babasin, Turner, Johnson and Meek Family Tree"


Editor’s Note:  See the Links Section for a link to Goodspeed History of Cheatham County.

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