The letter was first published in the Cincinnati Commercial August 7, 1865, and subsequently reprinted in a NY newspaper and anthology as Letter from a Freedman to his Old Master.
August 7, 1865
To My Old Master, Colonel P.H. Anderson, Big Spring, Tennessee
Sir: I got your letter, and was glad to find that you had not forgotten Jourdon, and that you wanted me to come back and live with you again, promising to do better for me than anybody else can. I have often felt uneasy about you. I thought the Yankees would have hung you long before this, for harboring Rebs they found at your house.
I want to know particularly what the good chance is you propose to give me. I am doing tolerably well here.
As to my freedom, which you say I can have, there is nothing to be gained on that score, as I got my free papers in 1864 from the Provost-Marshal-General of the Department of Nashville.
In answering this letter, please state if there would be any safety for my Milly and Jane, who are now grown up, and both good-looking girls. You know how it was with poor Matilda and Catherine.
Say howdy to George Carter, and thank him for taking the pistol from you when you were shooting at me.
From your old servant,