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In Their Own Words

March 07, 1738

Slow Mail and Unpredictable Weather in Colonial Georgia

William Stephens wrote in his journal of anticipation of receiving some long-awaited mail, then of some surprising weather:

“…we learnt, that two Ships from England arrived at Charles-Town about ten Days ago, which put us upon earnest Expectation of some Letters ; but according to the usual Way of Letters coming, it was too soon to look for them yet from Charles-Town, in case there were any ; and possibly a Fortnight to come yet, might produce some Certainty. The late extream Varia- tion of Weather, more than common here, may not im- properly be taken Notice of; several Days past being hot to a very great Degree, equal to May, and the Wind coming this Night out of the N. W. and blowing a hard Gale, occasioned such a sudden and severe Frost, as is but seldom seen in the depth of Winter in England, Water standing in Pans or Basons within Doors, being frozen entirely into a solid Lump of Ice. This puts us under some Fears and Apprehensions, lest the young Orange- Trees and other tender Plants may suffer much.”

Source: Allen D. Candler, ed. The Colonial Records of the State of Georgia, Vol. IV, Stephens’ Journal 1737-1740, Atlanta, GA, 1906, p. 98.