George S. Vest letter to Mary Garrett, 1867 July 19

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George S. Vest letter to Mary Garrett, 1867 July 19



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Page 1

A Dream within a dream.

Before stating, (my beautiful sweet.
-heart) this dream, some description of
its cause, ought to be ginven. During
the day of the 14th of July 1867,
the business to be attended to, in
my department, was greater than
usual, and feeling unwell, I
took a drink of brandy, which
I afterwards frequently repeated;
its effect was different from what
I expected ; and a deep gloom,
blacker than the night shrouded
my heart, into which no star
of hope entered. After the
completion of my daily tasks,
I returned to my home as usual,
and went to my room, seeking
relief in solitude, but none came :
for when the night grew late,
and all nature seemed to sleep,

Page 2

the untutored tones of a bird,
could indistinctly be heard approach.
-ing from the distance, it came
nearer, and at last perched itself
upon a tree, immediately in
front of my window ; and
in tones so sweet and sad,
that nature trembled, poured
upon the bosom of the silent
night, its mellow lamentation ;

My heart was deeply moved,
and I wondered if the great
Ruler of Heaven sent the bird
to increase my torturing pangs.

At last I slept, and dreamed this dream.

I was upon the banks of a
beautiful river, the sun was
fast declining, and the water
rippled, and made music
in the air. I dreamed I slept,
and suddenly clothed in clouds,
the lady of my love stood, and

Page 3

gazed upon me, with looks so
wild, with eyes so brilliantly
intoxicating ; that I dared not
breath ; but stood, and trembled.

She drew from a richly
ornamental case, a dagger, and
plunged it into her bosom. My
God, my pangs! I could not
speak - I could not move -
my blood congealed, while hers-
flowed red, and ran upon the
ground. The wild Expression
vanished from her eyes, and
they became so "purely dark.",
and "darkly pure", that I
thought the power of seeing,
and understanding had left
me, and that she must be
a dying angel.

I shrieked - And waked -
and - thought.

My Darling

Page 4

Can you explain whether
this horrid dream comes
as the prelude of many
sorrows? or whether my
mind was - deranged by
the drink I had swallowed?

Speak kindly, and
comfort, Little Koots, for
your lover, though an idle
dreamer, suffers from the
memory of his vision.

Yrs Affectionately
Geo: S. Vest

Original Format

Ink on paper



Vest, George S. , “George S. Vest letter to Mary Garrett, 1867 July 19,” Special Collections, John D. Rockefeller Jr. Library, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, accessed December 4, 2022,

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