George Washington's Beautiful Nelly: The Letters of Eleanor Parke Custis Lewis to Elizabeth Bordley Gibson, 1794-1851

Patricia Brady, Editor, Eleanor P. Lewis, Author, Nelly Custis Lewis, Author University of South Carolina Press $29.95 (287p) ISBN 978-0-87249-754-2
Nelly, the adopted daughter of George Washington, her grandmother's second husband, kept up a 60-year correspondence with her devoted girlhood friend Elizabeth. The collecton is ably edited by the publications director at the Historic New Orleans Collection. In Nelly's letters can be traced the passage of a Virginia belle of unique privilege into a mature woman who had a share of unhappiness in the premature deaths of her children and other family problems. The letters are expressive; Nelly (1779-1852) is forthright in her attitudes about the evils of slavery, the need for culture, the frustrations of societal expectations for women. Peppered with domestic gossip of the Washington household, the letters also take the reader through a distracting maze of family relationships springing from this well-connected daughter of the early republic. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/02/1991
Release date: 09/01/1991
Paperback - 309 pages - 978-1-57003-124-3
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-1-57003-631-6
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