December 1888

Saturday, December 1, 1888

Cloudy. Mr. Utley here last night went to No. Hatfield depot to help Frank load cars. He did not return here tonight.
Ma fried doughnuts and made ginger bread. I made cake. 3 loaves.
Fixed two gingham aprons for self.

Sunday, December 2, 1888

Pleasant all went to ch.

Mr. Snyders text – “I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ” etc.
F. went down this eve.

Monday, December 3, 1888

Clear this morn but cloudy and slight rain this P.M. We made out to get our clothes out to dry and in again. Stirred cream.

F. and Mr. Utley loading cars here. The last of our apples have gone. Mr. U. here tonight.
Written a card to Florence. School commenced.
4400.00 + 800 – $520.00

Tuesday, December 4, 1888

Snowing today pleasant this eve. Mother baked bread. We did our ironing etc. this morn.

Cut and nearly made two pair of drawers for Mattie this P.M.
Eliza Howland is 24 yrs. old today.
Frank and Mr. Utley went to Huntington on 6 o’c tr.

Wednesday, December 5, 1888

Cloudy this morn but cleared off warm and pleasant. I started for Florence store about 10 o’c – stopped at shoe-shop and Jame’s store – post office and Mr. Sesostris Warner’s to get his sister Mrs. Geo. Clapp. I met Mrs. Henry Warner and her daughter Mary Carr on the st. in Florence.

Teacher’s meeting in Haydenville today so the children have been at home. Mattie took good care of the little folks. Susie would not go to Grandma to have her nap so Mattie rocked her to sleep. She feels as though she had really accomplished something.

Thursday, December 6, 1888

Clouds and sunshine with considerable wind. Our red heifer had a heifer calf last evening.

Mother has made five apple pies and four mince pies today. I have helped about and visited with Mrs. Clapp. Finished another pair of drawers for Mattie. She has commenced another mat for Grandma Tilton. Grandpa has been getting ready to start the mill – also draw load of saw-dust for Searsville.

Friday, December 7, 1888

A mild pleasant day. Frank Sanderson commenced work here today. We have been making mince meat nearly three gallons. Finished gingham apron for self. Fixed three lace collars this eve.

Rec’d telegram from Mr. Utley in Middlefield. Also rec’d word that the oranges had come from N.Y. and the potatoes that Anton had sent. We had a very good visit from Mr. Synder this P.M. He had been up through the st. making calls.

Saturday, December 8, 1888

Clouds and sunshine. Weather mild so the children have played out of doors nearly all day. Mother has made bread and yeast. I been cleaning the new dishes and fixing place for them in the cup-board.

Commenced to work figures on tray cloth. Ma is working bureau scarf.
Mr. Warner Tilden here to dinner. Geo. Brazel H. Leonard here to get their pay.
Box of oranges rec’d from N.Y. Box of potatoes rec’d from Phillips Wisconsin – Anton Karrer sent them. Mother finished Frank’s red stockings this eve. Mrs. Clapp finished a pair that was being footed.
Frank is still detained in Middlefield.

Sunday, December 9, 1888

Snowed fast all day. We have kept as quiet as possible. Children learning verses, reading etc. I have been writing to Florence. It has seemed very lonesome without Frank at home.

Monday, December 10, 1888

Very cloudy rains a little tonight. Mother has done a large washing today. I have fixed book-marks and things ready for children to work. Grandpa carried Mrs. Clapp to the village. She thought she had had a very pleasant visit here.

Rec’d letter from Aunt S. and card from mother.
Took heifer over to A. Lanson Nash’s.
Frank came tonight.

Tuesday, December 11, 1888

Rain and snow all day.

Commenced making cider.

Wednesday, December 12, 1888

Cold and windy 12⁰ above 0 last night. Mother made bread, fixed up to make kitchen warmer. I finished ironing – washed off windows in two rooms up stairs put up clean curtains etc.

Thursday, December 13, 1888

Pleasant and cold. Men making cider. Mother has made seventeen pies (mince & apple)

I have been mending & fixing Xmas things.

Friday, December 14, 1888

Cold down to zero and lower in some places. I have newly covered the lounge in the kitchen commenced fancy pillow case for the pillow. Grandpa not able to be out much today he has a hard cold. Frank has kept a fire every night since Tues. They have covered the apples in the mill until warmer weather. Wind blows hard tonight. I made six bouquets of dried flowers and grasses.

Saturday, December 15, 1888

Pleasant not quite as cold. Men have been sawing wood – had McGowan to help.

Mother made short-cake. I made two loaves of cake. Worked on Christmas things.
Mr. Wheeler is sick in bed mother found him quite feeble.

Sunday, December 16, 1888

Warmer: snow is disappearing rapidly – nothing freezes anywhere tonight. We all went to ch. Mr. S. preached. Text “What think ye of Christ?” Frank has gone again tonight.

Rec’d a card from mother and Mary Guilford.

Monday, December 17, 1888

A very rainy day and raining hard this eve. F. & Grandpa put cider into the cellar. F. went to the store and house with me then went to the depot on his way to Huntington. Rec’d letter from Clara G. Wrote to mother and Mrs. Geckler. Finished the sixth holder tonight.

Mother finished bureau cover & commenced tray cloth. My father is 57 yrs. old today.
Mr. H. S. Snyder has a boy born today.

Tuesday, December 18, 1888

Sunshine and snow squalls. Mud and slush is ankle deep. I went down to see Mr. Wheeler found him a little more comfortable.

Mr. Washburn drew him a load of wood already for the stove. Sent letter to mother and Mrs. Geckler. Ironed and put up curtains in sitting room. Children have not been in school this week yet.
Mattie & P. have quite hard colds. They have been quite busy over their Christmas recitations etc.

Wednesday, December 19, 1888

A little more pleasant. Mother did washing and hung clothes in the apple-house. Growing cold very fast.

Thursday, December 20, 1888

Mother made several kinds of cake.

I put down the rag carpet (that used to be in mother’s chamber) in the kitchen it looks the best of any we ever have had there.
Merc. down to 0.

Friday, December 21, 1888

Quite cold roads very rough. Grandpa W. has gone to Northampton. Father came over with pork to sell to the Hill Bros. I made chocolate cake fixed down rugs in the chambers and sitting room helped iron what clothes were dry.

Helped Mattie finish off her fancy-work for Christmas.

Saturday, December 22, 1888

Pleasant and cold 2⁰ above 0 this morn.

Mother baked bread and pies. Things are all ready for company – they all stayed down to Mr. Wheelers to supper then came up here in the evening. Frank came on the last train bringing Christmas presents from Aunt. S. and some that he bought himself.
We had a treat on crackers, cheese and oranges. Ed. Geckler wife and children have the west chamber his father and mother had the front east chamber.

Sunday, December 23, 1888

Very pleasant not quite as cold.

The friends brought a Christmas dinner for Mr. Wheeler and have gone down there to help him eat it. They all came back here before dark. We have not been to church – papa was too tired. Spent the eve looking at an old diary over 130 yrs. old it belonged to a Mr. Lemuel Snow.

Monday, December 24, 1888

Very pleasant and growing warmer.

We had our Christmas dinner today had chicken pie, scalloped oysters, pickled pears, sweet pickle cucumber and sour cu. bread, butter, apple, mince and cream pies. Father, mother and Arthur came while we were eating dinner.
Christmas tree in the evening. Frank and Ed. cut one down to Mrs. O’Brien’s, they brought a little tree for Susie. Every one seemed to have a nice time. The children all had pieces to speak.
Sadness mingled with our joy. Rec’d telegram that Aunt Ruby died last Sat. Funeral is to be Wednesday noon.

Tuesday, December 25, 1888

Very pleasant and warmer – windows and doors open to be comfortable.

The friends all left on the 10-15 train. Mother went to Montgomery. Father and Arthur went home after dinner. Frank Williams stopped here to dinner. Frank left for Huntington on the 5 o’c train.
Mother and I have been putting things to rights after the party.
Ed. gave us a picture of himself and family. We all had a great supply of presents and good time all around.
Prescott had “The Boys of ‘61” from Mrs. E. Geckler. I had a footstool, farmer’s satin apron, two white aprons, two boxes of writing paper, etc. etc.
We have bought 25 lbs of lard of father.


The Boys of ’61 was a book written by journalist Charles Carlton Coffin, published in 1881. Its full title is: The Boys of ’61 or, Four Years of Fighting; Personal Observation with the Army and Navy, from the First Battle of Bull Run to the fall of Richmond. Coffin covered the war for the Boston Journal and would stay with Union Army camps and was on familiar terms with Union Army officers.

Wednesday, December 26, 1888

Warm and pleasant. Mother has washed. Grandpa W. been to Florence to Couch’s shop. Children all in school again today. Henry has played Christmas with his little tree it has kept him busy all day. Cut out an apron for mother and one for Henry. Covered the children’s books with cloth.

Thursday, December 27, 1888

Very rainy day. We ironed part of our clothes. Finished Henry’s apron all but the buttons. Very heavy wind this eve; tore the clothes in pieces that were left on the line. Mother went out to get them after 8 o’c this eve.

Grandpa spent the P.M. down to the village. I called on Mr. Wheeler found him out of doors seeing to his sick horse.

Friday, December 28, 1888

Windy but not very cold. Mr. Kingsley and Mr. Sanderson at work here today. Mr. H. raised the roof to engine room.

Mother been taking care of quarter of pork, baked bread and made butter. I dried apples, stamped two white aprons and worked one.
Marked new h’dkfs did a little mending. Wrote three letters.

Saturday, December 29, 1888

Cloudy and some sunshine. Merc. at 32⁰. Sanderson at work picking and drawing wood to the shed.

Children have helped out of doors nearly all day. Made Susie a birthday collar. I ironed collars and made pudding for dinner.
Frank has not returned.
$5200. + $300. + $500 – $6000.00

Sunday, December 30, 1888

Very pleasant. Frank from the village this morn. Train very late last night. We all went to ch. Mr. Synder preached text James 1st 3 – Ev. good and perfect gift etc. F. did not go down this eve.

Susie papa and I called on Mr. Wheeler.
Edwards wife is 21 yrs. old today.

Monday, December 31, 1888

Rainy – cleared off before bed-time.

Mother did washing.
Frank went to Northampton. J. Howard Pease came from So. Worthington to work for us. He and Frank went to the village this eve after his trunk.
Men (neighbors) drew wood from Grandpa’s lot for Mr. Wheeler.


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