James and Patience Black,

Their correspondence while separated during the Civil War.
Part 1- Introduction & Foreword
Originally transcribed by Bertha EMMERSON HORNE SANDERS and her daughter, Rosemary.

Re-typed into digital format with added footnotes by Shirley Smith (shir tx k@yahoo . com) and Sandra Smith Gwilliam (sandy scouter @yahoo . com). Ted Wright (e wright 3@webtv . net), Dwayne Crandall (dwayne crandall @hotmail . com) & many others have provided much valuable historical and family data. Thanks especially to Elreeta Crain Weathers who provided the photocopies of the letters and her website to post these letters and notes.

[Note from Sandra Smith Gwilliam: I have merged many sources into the footnotes for these letters. Some of the footnotes may not flow smoothly, because I tried to get as much information into this document as possible in a form that a search engine on the internet could pick it up easily. Some of the footnotes are duplicated in different sections of the letters- hopefully to help researchers find the research more readily. There may be discrepancies as there are in any family research. We welcome your input if you have other information pertinent to any of the families in these letters. Typos and other mistakes could have easily been made. Many records have conflicting information. I used the information that seemed to fit the circumstances and facts. In some instances we have put the information from all of our sources when we couldn't determine the correct data.]

Note with the copies of the letters: The borrowed book from which these pages were copied could not be taken apart. Page 147 & following could not be copied so that they were legible and without damaging the back cover. Book was borrowed from Kathy Grim Clark who had borrowed it from L. L. Grimm.
Introduction and Foreword by Bertha Emmerson Horne Sanders:
I first read these letters as a girl of 15 at South Bosque where I was born and lived in same home where Patience & James Black first began to keep house soon after their marriage.

The letters impressed me very much and I often asked questions of other relatives about my grandparents. Also we had a large almost life-size picture of my grandmother, Patience Black in our living room and she seemed so alive. Anyway I turned seemed as if she was looking at me.

So with this back ground, and my feelings toward my grandparents that I had never known except thru these letters, I wanted to copy them for future generations. Some I had and other relatives had some. A niece, Florence made copies of what my brother Sam had & my sister Mabel sent me some copies & I copied some at my sister, Patience's. All of this took time.

I hope they will inspire future generations as they have me and the other descendants of Patience and James Black.

I started copying them in 1936 during the Texas Centennial when all Texas was so interested in the past. First, thru a long tedious task in long hand, then by typewriter, also making carbon copy of each. It was a long arduous labor of love, as I was only an amateur typist. The foreword was written later.

Patience Crain's father was Joel B. Crain who fought at San Jacinto. The name is engraved in marble at San Jacinto Monument, near Houston. He passed away [in] 1887 and my great grandmother, Sarah, his wife, lived with us until she passed in 1902, when I was five years of age. I remember her well. It took several years to copy these letters. Do not remember exactly.

Bertha E. Sanders, granddaughter. This written Aug 12, 1972. Now living at 1314 7th St. Rosenberg, Texas, 77471 [This address is most likely not valid anymore for her.]

My daughter, Rosemary, assisted in the typing of the letters from my hand written copies and son Allan gets all the credit for photostatic copies.

Joel B. Crain married Sarah, daughter of Genl. James Smith for whom Smith County was named. Their daughter Patience was my grandmother. She was born 1842 at site of Henderson, Texas. She married James Black in 1860 [actually 11 Sep 1861] at Waco or near Waco, where she had moved with her father, Joel Crain in 1855.

Their daughter, Julia was my mother who was born near Waco [in] 1866. James Black was stationed at Galveston during [the] War Between the States. They left many wonderful letters.

My mother, Julia married William E. Horne who was born [in] Tunnel Hill, [Whitfield County], Georgia, Sept. 2, 1861. They were married Nov. 1885. My sisters & brothers were Patience B 1887-1963 - Mabel 1888-1959 B Ernest 1890-1942-Sam 1892-1956- Mattie 1893- 1911- Laura 1895-, Bertha (myself) 1897. Myrtle 1899-1970. by Bertha E. Sanders from old book revised Aug 12, 1972
I reproduced 45 copies of this book of letters to be given to descendants of James and Patience Black. Easy to reproduce from copies my mom made. She spent many hours and years to type out the original book with an assist from my sister, Rosemary. We all have come to love James and Patience through their letters of love. They have inspired us, they gave us an insight into their lives and the times in which they lived. By Great Grandson 17 Aug 1972, Allan G. Sanders.
Correspondence of my Grandparents James and Patience Crain Black during the Civil War by Mrs. E. L. Sanders 707 S. Marshall St. Box 349 Henderson

The Correspondence of my Grandparents James and Patience Black during the War Between the States. Originals of these letters are in a box in First Natl. Bank, Henderson, Texas. These letters are exactly as written.

Patience Black was born at Henderson in 1842, the daughter of Joel B. Crain and Sarah Smith Crain. Joel B. Crain fought at San Jacinto (See "Heroes of San Jacinto " by Dixon and Kemp, page 428)

Patience Black's mother was a daughter of Genl. James Smith, for whom Smith County was named and on whose headright the town of Henderson was built. He and wife Hannah Smith are buried at end of South St., Henderson. (History & Geography of Texas as told in "County Names" by Fulmore gives a historical sketch of his life).

James Black was a native of Alabama. He married Patience Crain in 1861 in McLennan County, where her parents had moved in 1855 from Henderson, following the death of Gen. Smith . Hannah Smith, his wife died in McLennan Co. in 1864, but brought back by son Nute Smith [Isaac Newton Smith] and buried in Henderson by side of her husband. (This verified in these letters.)

James Black and Patience Crain Black had two children, Joel David born in 1862 [6 Aug 1862] and Julia Montgomery, born in 1866. Joel David mentioned so much in the letters was a very fine man. He died in New Mexico in 1945. Julia married Will Horne in McLennan Co in 1885. They were my parents. Julia died at Hamilton in 1941 and [is] buried there.

Patience Black died in 1869 . James Black died in 1887 . Both are buried [in] Harris Creek Cemetery, McLennan Co., as is also Joel and Sarah Crain and most of Patience's brothers and a sister, Ida. Matt is buried at Plainview where she died in 1928.

I was born in McLennan Co., on the site and in part of [the] same house [where] James and Patience Black started housekeeping in when they were married. By coincidence I came to Henderson, Texas, in 1934 where my grandparents, great-grandparents and great- great-grandparents had lived before me. By Mrs. E. L. Sanders, Granddaughter of James and Patience Black.

Matt Crain was Patience Crain's sister, just two years younger than she. She has talked to me many times about my grandparents. She said they were the most devoted couple she had ever seen, and was positive no cross words or any sort had ever passed between them. When I was a child Aunt Matt lived in McGregor, just 8 miles away and then moved to Plainview but visited us practically every summer until just before her death in 1828. [Most likely 1928]

My mother Julia and little Joel and her father lived with Patience's parents, Joel and Sarah Crain for many years, after Patience's death .

Grandfather Black re-married after 15 years and he married a first cousin of Patience, Texas Smith Milner, who was a daughter of Joe Smith, a son of Gen. James Smith. James Black only lived a few years after marrying the second time.

She first married a [Williamson] Milner at Henderson . They were later divorced, and that created quite a sensation then as divorces [were] then almost unheard of. Mr. John Crow of Henderson remembers Tex Smith and the [Williamson] Milner she married. Texas Smith and Mr. Milner had a daughter. She lived to be grown. Married and had a daughter, but both she and daughter died when her daughter was a child, so they have no descendants.

Letters written latter part of April & May 1863. Written from Henderson, Texas. Grandma, widow of Genl. James Smith, Jasper, Nute, Matt, Birt, Jack [Andrew Jackson Smith], Joe ; sons of Genl. Smith, Sarah ; Barsheba [H.], daughters of Genl. Smith. Barsheba's great grandson is J. F. Barnes of Waco, is the head of a large lumber chain. Descendants of others scattered over Texas and elsewhere.
[list of Joel Burditt Crain's family by Bertha Horne Sanders:]
Sarah, mother of Patience Crain Black Author of these letters.
Matt [Martha A. Crain] (sister of Patience)
Will [William Hampton Crain, brother of Patience]
Jim [James Smith Crain, brother of Patience]
Ambrose H. Crain brother of Patience
Nute [Joel Newton Crain], brother of Patience
Frances Marion brother of Patience (died bachelor)
Ida sister of Patience [Ida Mae Crain]
[Napoleon Bonaparte Crain and Sam Houston Crain, the youngest in the family, were not listed in this list of siblings of Patience Crain Black, but are listed in other census and family records.]