Chamberlayne Family in Green Springs, 1865-1868
(Written c. 1932)
[C. G. Chamberlayne, comp., Ham Chamberlayne—Virginian… (Richmond, 1932), pp. viii-ix:]
In August 1865 Captain [John Hampden] Chamberlayne, twenty-seven years old and a penniless man, returned to Virginia from his uncle's home in Mississippi, and settled down as a farmer in the "Green Springs" neighborhood of Louisa County. The eighteen months at "Green Springs" were months of hard work and extreme poverty, spent in the hopeless effort to extract from the none too generous soil of a small farm a living for his mother and one of his brothers as well as himself. In the spring of 1867 he suffered a complete physical and nervous breakdown, which for a whole year incapacitated him for effort of any sort. That year was the darkest of his life.
In May, 1868, he accepted a subordinate clerical position with the Virginia and Tennessee Railroad at Central Depot, now Radford, Va. In December 1868 or early 1869 he moved to Petersburg, and, connecting himself with The Index, a newspaper recently established there, entered upon the career of journalist….