Thursday, February 12, 2009

February 12 thru 15, 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.

The Tenneys are there to visit again... Jane and Sarah quilt. They go to Peter Johnson's funeral?? Omar cuts wood, Henry sorts a few potatoes again. Jane Tenney goes home at night. Bart goes to Tenney's schoolhouse??? Not sure what that means. Maybe Jane was a school teacher? Maybe not? Jane is at their house all day. Maybe the Tenneys owned the school house but somebody else taught. I'm not sure how the school system was organized at that time?

Saturday, Henry Tenney asks Henry to come over to help with a sick cow, but he gets there too late - the cow is dead. Henry helps Henry Tenney and Henry Polmeteer skin the cow. Three Henrys! They probably don't use the meat of a sick cow, but they certainly don't let the skin/leather go to waste! Omar and Jen don't go to see Susie (probably Susie Conley) because it is stormy.

Sunday Bart goes to church - sounds like Sarah and Henry stay home - Sarah is sick. Omar and Mills go to church in the evening, taking "Old Kitt" and the buggy. It appears to have been warm long enough to not be able to use the sleigh? It has been 40 or 50 everyday for a while. This is the first mention of one of the horses by name. I know from later entries that there are at least 3 horses --- Molly, Old Kitt, and John?

Monday - Various chores -- washing, quilting, potato sorting --- most mentions of potato sorting seem to use the pharse - "a few potatoes" - obviously not a favorite task! Henry mends shoes... they used to fix stuff! -- you didn't just go buy a new pair. Henry may have even made the shoes originally? ( note: Thomas Olney - the original Olney in this country - 1635 - was a shoe maker among other things - Henry is 9th generation in this country) Bart and Mills don't go to school. Friday's mention of Tenney's Schoolhouse must have referred to going to school.... maybe school attendance was sporadic depending on weather, work that needed doing, etc??

Sunday, February 8, 2009

February 8 thru 11, 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.

Some more interesting information... Omar and Bart to to Evergreen Farm for a load of ice, while Mills and Henry shovel sawdust out of the ice house to get ready... sawdust was used to insulate the ice to make it last as long as possible into the summer..... possibly even into the following winter according to some.

Evergreen Farm is the home of Henry's sister Ellen, who is married to William Eber Weld. If I've got it worked out right, William E. Weld is also Sarah's 1st cousin? (They previously checked the ice on William Johnson's pond?) Evergreen Farm is located on the hill on the road between Ingleside (Riker's Hollow), and Prattsburg. Location noted on the map. (link to the right) The row of evergreens is still there according to notes from my Dad. Sarah's parents (Eber Hill and Lydia Matilda Weld) live on a farm near Evergreen Farm.... also noted on the map.

Omar and Jen go to Wayland to visit their sister Hattie and husband Harmon (Harm) and their neice Florence. Bart and Mills go to visit Salem I. Cloun (sp?)

Note: Wonderful story of how Sarah's grandparents - David and Hannah Weld - happened to end up in this area here.

Tuesday Henry fixes a whiffletree to the Democrat wagon. I knew what a whiffletree is, but a Democrat wagon??? --- " a light flat bed farm wagon or ranch wagon that has two or more seats and is usually drawn by one or sometimes two horses". One source says you have seen one if you ever saw a western movie. I'm not sure how fancy their Democrat wagon was? The one below is a restored pretty fancy one. The term Democrat was often capitalized as Henry does.
A whiffletree is a system of cross bars hooked together to harness two horses to a single wagon, sleigh, plow, etc. The wagon above is set up for one horse. The Olney's Democrat wagon must have been fitted for two horses. With such a large family, maybe their's had more than two seats? Again, you've seen a whiffletree if you've ever watched the hero climb over the runaway horses pulling the stagecoach to sure destruction in one of those western movies. My dad and mom both remember Democrat wagons still in use when they were kids. According to Dad, the seats were probably removable .... sort of like the modern day family mini-van? Seats in to haul the kids, or out to haul lumber? I did find a reference on the internet to some kids falling out of a Democrat Wagon because the seat was not fastened.

Omar and Jen return from Wayland -- I guess they stayed overnight. Omar and Sarah head to Naples to pick up 2 bags of feed from the grist taken to the mill last week. Grist is grain that has been separated from its chaff in preparation for grinding. I'm not sure why so many trips to Red Mill and Lyon's Mill. Seems like bigger batches would have been better? Maybe grain kept better whole than when ground into flour or cattle/horse feed?

Wednesday is a bit hard to read... for some reason Henry writes over the original entry at a right angle. Henry goes to Tenney's to get Sarah, and he and Omar draw wood. Henry and Jane Tenney are there to visit. Jane and Sarah are quilting. Omar and Bart haul wood. Henry sorts Potatoes. (note - sorting potatoes was a constant task to get rid of the ones that might be going bad so the rest would last longer - bad ones probably went to the animals - remind me to tell you Dad's "Decisions" story one day) Mills finishes husking corn and puts it in the cornhouse. ( Note: We now have two more structures on the farm in addition to the house and barn -- an Icehouse, and a Cornhouse.) Sarah and Bart go to Peter Johnson's funeral.

On Thursday, Jen bakes. Henry sorts potatoes again. Omar goes to Naples takes more grist to Lyon's mill and picks up previous grist. (Note: does this indicate that Lyon's Mill is in Naples rather than at the Blodgett place as previously thought???) Sarah and Jane continue quilting. Henry Tenney and Jane stay overnight. A midwinter thaw --- it has been 50-60 degrees for a few days.

I think we've located the blacksmith shop mentioned earlier - Avery's - probably located in Ingleside - near the church and the Grange Hall -- location on the map --- click link to the right.