Sunday, June 28, 2009

June 28 thru July 1, 1886

As always, click on the picture to enlarge for easier reading of original. Feel free to contact me with corrections, additional information, or comments. Click on the map link to the right of this entry to see more about where places are. Other information can be checked out with the links to the right, including a great family picture of everybody circa 1886, and a picture of the whole family several years later - circa 1900 ???

Monday --- Henry takes a 25 pound tub of butter to Slatterey & Co. and he gets paid $3.75 - 15 cents a pound. He buys 2 hand rakes, and something else I can't decipher at Hatches. He stops by to visit D.D. Clark on the way home. Omar cuts clover at the Terney's. Henry "grinds the sections" - sharpens the cutting knives on the mowing machine. Henry does the hand cutting of the clover near the fences where the horse drawn mower won't go easily. Sarah and Lois are still picking strawberries.

Note: It takes about 1 quart of heavy cream to make a pound of butter. In other terms, it takes about 3.5 gallons of high fat content milk to make a pound of butter. A single cow would give between 3 and 8 gallons of milk a day according to an 1870 Journal of the New York State Agricultural Society. Thus a 25 pound tub of butter was about the output of 7 or 8 cows in one day, or two days output from 4 cows? I'm not sure how much they used the ice they cut back in the winter, but they certainly did not have good refrigeration. Remember they were using some portion of the milk as part of the food eaten by 11 people, plus guests.

Tuesday --- (Henry reverses the next two day's entries - dates switched) Henry has Omar cultivate the corn. Mills and Henry stir up the hay to help it dry, and rake and stack it. Sarah goes to visit Mrs. Gard Waite with the Tennys, and Mrs. Wm Blodgett. They find her not feeling well, but they all stay to dinner. Henry and the boys put up the rest of the hay.

Wednesday --- They draw the hay they put up yesterday. Probably that means they brought the hay back to their place. 12 loads are put into a stack, and a small load is taken to the barn. T. Briglin stops by to purchase some oats, but Henry does not sell him any. Lois goes to visit Nate Polmateer. Lois and Ettie pick raspberries for R. Smith. Same place Sarah and Lois have been picking strawberries.

Thursday --- Henry finishes stacking the hay from the Terney lot, and puts on a top layer of oat straw. The top layer of a hay stack can "spoil" before the hay is used. Using oat straw keeps more of the the hay preserved well. The stack ends up taking 14 loads, and Henry declares the condition of the hay in the stack "fine". Henry puts "hangers" on the sides of the hay stack... probably ropes to help keep the hay from blowing away? The upper/outer layer of the stack acts much the same way a thatched roof would work, keeping the inside dry. Omar mows about half of another field of hay in the morning, and cultivates more corn and potatoes in the afternoon. Mills and Henry plant some beans.

A couple of pictures of horse drawn mowers and hay stacks below.

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