I am often struck by how many men from Connecticut moved south to North or South Carolina to seek their fortune. Daniel Betts of Redding was one such man, and we recently acquired a series of letters he wrote home to his daughter Julia while he was in Charleston, South Carolina. One of his letters in particular caught my attention. It was written April 7, 1821.
He wrote: “I will observe that there are a great many Jews in this place it is said there are more than in any other place in the United States.” Daniel commented on their “forms and customs” that he found a bit odd. He insinuated they rarely told the truth, they did not handle money from sunset on Friday to sunset on Saturday, but they will still made contracts during that time, and “they will purchase goods anywhere that they can find a bargain.” Ahh, stereotypes. Continue reading