This letter was written by 19 year-old Luther Augustine Fox (1843-1925), the son of Alfred J. Fox (1817-1884) and Lydia Bost (1824-1914) of Cabarrus County, North Carolina. Luther attended the junior class of Newberry College, South Carolina, in 1860 and remained until early in the spring of 1861 when the College closed for that session due to the Civil War.
Returning home, he continued his theological course studies under the direction of his father and took charge of a pastorate in Stanley and Cabarrus Counties, North Carolina, as a Licentiate of the Tennessee Synod. He was afterwards pastor of several congregations in Lincoln and Gaston Counties, North Carolina. In 1867 he entered the senior class of Roanoke College, Salem, Virginia, and graduated in 1868. He went on to a career in the ministry and as a professor.
Fox wrote his letter to Professor James M. Schreckhise (1831-18xx) who served as the Professor of Ancient Languages at Newberry College from 1862-1865. Schrieckhise was an 1854 graduate of Lutheran Seminary in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. He was the son of George and Jane (Keiser) Schreckhise of Mt. Sidney, Augusta County, Virginia. There is no record of his ever serving in the Confederate Army, though Shreckhise’s letters express his enthusiasm for secession and his fears for the Confederacy’s future.
Addressed to Rev. Prof. J. M. Schreckhise, Newberry, South Carolina
Bost’s Mills, Cabarrus Co., North Carolina
May 22nd 1862
Dear Prof. Scheckhise,
I am seated to write hastily to you in reference to my trunk. Prof. Smeltzer was not at the convention in Salisbury, neither anyone else from Newberry (nor scarcely anybody from anywhere else) as I had expected when I left college. If you are not coming up this summer, myself or my Father will have to go after it. If you are coming up or even passing through and I can make arrangement with you, it will save us of a long trip and beside very much oblige us. We will pay all the expenses and reward you for your trouble. And beside, we will be glad to have you under the roof of our own domicile. Please write immediately whether you are going to Virginia or not and if so, whether you can bring it. If you are not going to Virginia, can you not visit us and preach around in our churches? I can make no promises but I think we can stir up the spirit of liberality among us that your expenses will be paid.
I have got an interim license and have commenced preaching. I have preached 3 times. I am busily engaged studying theology exclusively. I have not read a line of Latin or Greek classics since I left college. I expect when I go back to college, I will have to start anew. I believe more firmly in Special Providences now than ever. I think I can now fully understand my sudden leaving college. This will remind you of things I told you — things I then was almost afraid were the offspring of my childish fancy. Since I wrote you, I have not associated with the ladies any and besides, I lopped off all “correspondence” with them “to let each other alone.” Did that answer ever come! If so, how does the case stand now! How are matters going now with the college? Tell Mrs. Hous___ I will bring them their money if I come. If not, I will send it immediately. I am really sorry that they have not got it sooner.
Excuse great haste. Don’t let anyone see it. Write soon. Your fellow laborer in the vineyard of Christ Jesus, — L. A. Fox