Josephine Jordan was my great, great, grandmother. She lived the life of a common farm wife in northern Maine. She kept a line a-day diary. I have her complete diaries from 1892 to 1898. You can learn more about Josephine, her diaries, and some historical perspective by going back to the first installment of this series.

Your questions, insights, or comments about this month's diary entries are welcomed.


--Thurs, Sept. 1
Men butchered a heifer. All well.

--Frid, Sept.2
Quite cool. Very busy looking after the meat.

--Sat, Sept. 3
Cooking meat and making mince pies.

--Sund, Sept. 4
Heard Elder Young preach this afternoon.

--Mond, Sept. 5
Quite warm. Cutting more mince meat.

--Tues, Sept. 6
Made eight mince pies. All quite well.

--Wed, Sept. 7
Very, very busy writing and making mince pies.

--Thurs, Sept. 8
Frank & his father are away today. All well.

--Frid, Sept. 9
Commenced digging potatoes. Quite well.

--Sat, Sept. 10
Husband took 28 barrels of potatoes.

--Sund, Sept. 11
Frank & Blanche went to church. We went in the afternoon.

--Mond, Sept. 12
Hired man came this afternoon. Morning took 28 bbl.

--Tues, Sept. 13
Nice and fine. Took 28 barrels of potatoes away.

--Wed, Sept. 14
Raining. Man gone home. Took 13 bbls away.

--Thurs, Sept. 15
Still raining. Took 14 bbls to factory.

--Frid, Sept. 16
Quite fine. Man back again. Took 28 bbls away.

--Sat, Sept. 17
Went down town and paid H. Jones what I owed him.

--Sund, Sept. 18
Frank & Blanche went to church. Hubby, Gertie and I went in the afternoon.

--Mond, Sept. 19
Went down town. Rode after the colt. Paid Dow tax $4.08.

--Tues, Sept. 20
Took 28 bbls of potatoes away. All quite well.

--Wed, Sept. 21
Took 28 bbls of potatoes away.

--Thurs, Sept. 22
Took 28 bbls of potatoes away. Digging potatoes all the time.

--Frid, Sept. 23
Went down town & got a stew kettle & pan.

--Sat, Sept. 24
Preserved a kettle of plumbs. Had good luck.

--Sund, Sept. 25
Mild & lovely. Blanche & Frank went to church.

--Mond, Sept. 26
Raining. Do not feel very happy. The tonge is a wicked thing.

--Tues, Sept. 27
Quite dull. Don't feel very happy. But I am to blame.

--Wed, Sept. 28
Feel better. Hope the Lord will forgive me.

--Thurs, Sept. 29
Am very busy. But feel better. Bless the Lord.

--Frid, Sept. 30
Bless the Lord, oh my soul. He is so good.


Susan Humeston said...

Poor Josephine - she probably had a tiff with someone in the family and felt so badly afterward about what she said - and we all know how that feels. She sounds wonderful - I would have loved to have known her. I don't think I could have worked as hard as she does. In the spring, it's cleaning walls and the stove moved outside to clean, then whitewash the walls. In the fall, it's harvest and preserving the harvest. I think she made so many mince pies because that was a way to preserve the beef that was slaughtered - perhaps they were not sweet, but like pot pies.Then again, if they were real minced meat pies, the meat would be preserved with alcoholic spirits and dried fruits, like fruit cake. This is SO fascinating - thank you so much for having put this on the internet. I just love things like this.

Anonymous said...

The repeated comment about "28 barrels" indicates, I suspect, the number of barrels that could fit into a cargo wagon. It doesn't sound like the Jordans had a potato storage barn on the farm, but perhaps were selling the spuds as soon as they came out of the ground.