How to Donate
Horace Dodd came south from Vermont to forge a career in a cotton shipping firm in Apalachicola. After two years in the business, he was already thinking of moving on, or back to New England, complaining that the pressure of work was too great, and that he was down to 111 pounds despite constant work-outs with dumbbells. In four letters (and portions of a fifth) written to his Vermont sweetheart, Emma, he describes a young man's life in Florida. The entertainments of Apalachicola, he says, consisted of a Glee Club and Music Club, which he joined, and in sailing, fishing, and drinking. "I wasn't in a condition last night to write letters," he admits at one point. Though Dodd is chiefly concerned with affirming his affection for Emma, and with coming north to see her, his letters contain many details of his quarters, his daily routine, and even make an oblique reference to the rising anti-Yankee feelings in the South ("You know We Southerners are exasperated now with the North & spoiling for a fight," he tells her in late December of 1859).