Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Simms Review (Vol 13: No 2) >> Simms-Trotti Friendship >> Page 38

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Page 38

Secondary Scholarship | 2005

James Everett Kibler

In the archival collection of rare books at the newly opened Union
County (SC) Museum is a copy of Simms's The History of South Carolina
published by S. Babcock of Charleston in 1840. It is signed by Simms to

S. W. Trotti
from his friend
The Author

Samuel wilds Trotti (1810-1856) was born at Briarwood Plantation
near Simms's own woodlands. He was aide to South Carolina governor
John Hugh Means (1812-1862), whose sister, Maria, he married. Means
was governor 1850-1852. Trotti served in the Seminole War. The rolls list
him as a musician. An able lawyer, Trotti represented Barnwell District in
the state legislature and as a member of the 27th Congress beginning in
From woodlands, on 29 January 1842, Simms wrote James Henry
Hammond: "I have just received half a doz. copies of my Hist. from the
city [Charleston], which I will furnish to Trotti to distribute among active
noisy friends for exhibition, in different portions of the District. He will
also have some other of my scribblings for this purpose, in the shape of
pamphlets, etc." The Union County Museum copy may be one of these
Hammond and Simms were both political associates of Trotti and on
relatively friendly terms at the time. In 1842, Simms was being nominated
to serve in the South Carolina legislature for Barnwell District. On 10 May
1845, Simms wrote Hammond that Trotti may have a copy of his review of
Martineau on slavery. "I distributed a number in the district when I was in
nomination there three years ago, " he wrote. In a letter to Hammond dated
22 November 1847, Simms described a rift between himself and Trotti. He
wrote: "I never deceived myself in the notion that I had it [his
friendship] I made him no pledges of friendship---we exchanged no
guarantees.... We are surely quits."
Trotti continued to live at Briarwood Plantation until his death in 185
at the age of 46. In June 1850, Trotti entertained Simms's Virginia friend
and fellow writer, Nathaniel Beverley Tucker, at Briarwood. Hammond was
also present, but Simms was not.