John writes to James in Charleston about his desire to come to town to raise money but his unwillingness to take the required Federal oath of allegiance. He inquires if James or someone else who has taken the oath may conduct business on his behalf so that he can avoid the oath. Drayton requests information about the "guards on the [Charleston] wharves and river" and notes his intention of leaving the country. He believes it is best for the "[Federal administration] to pile on the agony". Also mentions witnessing Union troops chasing Governor Magrath to Columbia.
A lengthy and searching "sketch of my life", by James Drayton. Written in the form a of confessional, Drayton reflects on his childhood, education, the death of his first wife (Louisa Elford), the purpose of his existence and his strong feelings for the recipient.