Summer 1998

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Diary of Abigail Hackett

edited by

George Dickey

Introduction, Jan. - Feb. 1865, Mar. 1865, Apr.-May 1865, Jun.-Aug. 1865, Sept.-Nov. 1865,
Dec. 1865-Feb. 1866, Mar. - May 1866, Jun.-Aug. 1866, break, Nov. 1866-Feb. 1867,
Mar. 1867, May-June 1867
, Households on the Swale

June 1865

Thursday 1st. A very warm day. Charles plowed the rest of the garden. I called to say good bye to Tess. Seemed solemn to part.

Friday 2nd. A very warm day. I commenced cleaning my cellar—had to leave for company. C. Chilson and wife was here today. Feel quite tired tonight. Killed our calf today.

Saturday 3rd. Another very warm day. Charles to Cameron with his veal—saw where Bartlett's team was killed. Mary Benom was here to tea tonight. Eddy took me and Willie and Mrs. Powell out riding. We went down to Isaac Jones's.

Sunday 4th. Got up real early and went to skimming milk— heard a well remembered voice—it was our soldier Charley boy coming—glad to see him but felt sorry that he was not dis-charged. He went to Sabbath School and after dinner he started back—but it was satisfaction to see him. Had some calls to see C. E. Attalia rode out with A. B. I wrote to Lucina.

Monday 5th. A very warm day. Looks showery. Been quite busy today. Had our sheep sheared today. Set out cabbage plants tonight.

Tuesday 6th. Looks like rain in the morning. I set out cab-bage plants this morning. Charles planted beans and sowed turnips. Had company today—Mrs. Butler, Frank and Jenny Van Houghton. Thundered some tonight.

Wednesday 7th. All well. Washed this morning and baked this afternoon. Worked in garden. Feel quite tired. We had a shower, lasted about 5 minutes. Jo Lochery was on the Swale today. Charles planted buckwheat.

Thursday 8th. A very warm day, went down to Han's—came back to Peck's, found house full of visitors, then Charles came after me.

Friday 9th. Rather lowry morning. Went a visiting today again. Went to Mark Jones's this forenoon and to Isaac J. this afternoon. Mina came down and came home this afternoon with me. Began to thunder and rain at 6 o'clock.

Saturday 10th. A rainy night and a rainy day today. Charley came home today a free man again. We all feel well over it.

Sunday 11th. Went to Sabbath School today. Feel quite well and happy.

Monday 12th. I washed today. Charles went to Bennetsville this morning.

Tuesday 13th. I went to Bath today, with Charley, Mrs. Powell and Una. We spent a pleasant day. Went around considerable. Visited the jail. I don't believe 1 should like to live in Bath Jail one bit. I feel quite tired tonight.

Wednesday 14th. A very pleasant day—looks as if we must have more rain. I cleaned my wool today—got most of it dry. Charles worked in shop. C. E. hoed corn.

Thursday 15th. A cloudy day with some sprinkling. Papered my kitchen—E. D. and Charles help! me—looks real nice. Rode out this afternoon with Charley to collect money for Sunday School books—got 50f. Must try again tomorrow.

Friday 16th. A pleasant day. I cleaned my pantry. Charles white washed my kitchen today. Charles and I went up to Silas Hatch's—M. Converse and wife was there—found Maria suffered much with her eyes. Poor girl—it is real hard to sit in a darkened room. Received a letter from Lucina and one from Fanny Ingraham.

Saturday 17th. Been quite busy today—baked pumpkin pies and strawberry pies—had calls from soldiers. Our bees swarmed today. Had a fine shower this afternoon. Weeded in garden. Charles has worked in shop all day.

Sunday 18th. A warm day. Been heavy showers all around us today—but did not reach us on the Swale. Went to Sabbath School today and to meeting. Mr. Richardson preached Had a full house. Narcess Powell was here and several soldiers.

Monday 19th. A warm day. 1 washed, had some calls. Charles cultivated out his potatoes, worked in shop. It commenced raining at 12 o'clock—rained all afternoon.

Tuesday 20th. Foggy and rainy in the morning. Cleared off at 10. I went strawberrying down to Peck's this afternoon.

Wednesday 21th. A pleasant morning. A fine shower this af-ternoon. I worked on Grandpa's pants.

Thursday 22nd. I went to Tolesville to meeting with Mr. and Mrs. Powell, had a fine ride and heard some good preaching— Elder Countryman was much interested with it. Had a fine shower today.

Ed. Note: Tolesville = Cameron Mills.

Friday 23rd A very warm day today. Mr. Converse and wife was here visiting, had a good time. Mat went over his marches with Sherman again. Charley arrived at noon from Tolesville meeting—he brought a headache with him.

Saturday 24th. Pleasant day—a hard shower this afternoon. Charles had help chopping this forenoon. Went to Frank Hawk-ens's visiting, called on Mrs. Diamond. How I love her. She seems like a dear aunt I had—Dear Aunt Sally Platt. I will never forget your loving words.

Sunday 25th. A very pleasant day. Charles went to Hedges-ville—took Eddy and Willie. I went to S. S. and came home and read till I was tired.

Monday 26th. A warm day. I washed, had some calls. Charles cultivated out his potatoes, worked in shop. It commenced raining at 12 o'clock—rained all afternoon.

Tuesday 27th. It has been a cool day—rather cloudy. No rain. Attalia went up to stay to Mr. Diamonds with R. Blair. C. plowed Elisa's ground today. Mrs. Hill started for Charlotte today. Cool night.

Wednesday 28th. Pleasant day. I went strawberrying with Mrs. P. and Mrs. Van H. Got a fine lot. Had strawberry short-cake. Charles sowed buckwheat.

Thursday 29th. I went visiting today down to Mrs. Downs.

Mrs. Woodard and Mrs. was there. Had a good visit. Mr. Pratt (Preacher) stayed here tonight.

Friday 30th. A fine shower last night and one today. Called to Mrs. Downs with Mr. Pratt and introduced to the ladies. Hope it would have a good effect. Calls tonight. A letter from Lucina.

July 1865

Saturday 1st. A cloudy day, but warm. Charles went to Canisteo to mill today. I and Lucina went a strawberrying to-day—got a fine lot. It is now 10 o'clock—what is keeping Chas. I fear something dreadful has happened. If I only knew which way to go I would start after him, but must wait and listen. Oh, how solemn it seems—tick, tick, tick of the clock and the frogs—and I scratching the pen. What can I do^-hark, I hear a wagon, yes, here he is—wagon back so I will go to bed.

Sunday 2nd. A fine shower last night—several showers today. Went to S. S.—had a very interesting time, I think our school im-proves some—did not feel very well and did not go to meeting. Charles says I lost an excellent sermon. Some calls today.

Monday 3rd. 1 washed and went strawberrying. Lucina has come home tonight—got rather homesick. The folks making much celebration for the 4th. Cooler, but no rain today.

Tuesday 4th. A very pleasant day. The folks all gone to the celebration at Bath—left Willie and myself here to do the chores. Can hear the cannons. I feel very lonesome tonight—took tea with E. D. Got my chores done all in good time. The heat lightning makes some beautiful sights—this is grand fireworks.

Wednesday 5th. A fine day. All the folks tired out. I guess I feel better than those who went to the celebration for they feel very much out of sorts. Eddy is the only one that amounts to much—he works on the road all day.

Thursday 6th. A cool day—had company, Mrs. Creasy, Mrs. Woodard, Elisa. After tea called down to Levi's, had a ride home with S. Hawkes.

Friday 7th. A call from Mr. D and wife, Una called. A dance to Sawyer's. C. E. and Lucina have gone. Don't feel very well tonight. Been a pleasant day.

Saturday 8th. 1 have not been well today. Had to keep to my bed most of the time. Charles had help chopping today. Elisa and Mrs. Woodard called to see me.

Sunday 9th. Quite cool and pleasant. Went to S. S.—the question "Did Adam die on the day he eat of the forbidden fruit?" Charles and I went down to Ed Angles after school—had a pleas-ant walk and a good time. Came home, done chores sat down and will retire.

Monday 10th. We commenced spinning today. Had company—Mrs. E. Kent. Lucina had a bad cold and sore throat. The men have been chopping in foller today. John Benom came over. Charles E. and Lucina took his mules and took a ride. Quite cool tonight. E. Dickey called.

Tuesday 11th. A fine shower last night. Quite foggy this morning. Charles E. and I went to Jasper to R. Kent's—found him quite sick, but we had a good visit. Started for home at 3 o'clock. Chas. has worked in shop all day. He must go next time and leave his work, or I will him. Calls tonight.

Wednesday 12th. A pleasant day—rather cool. I washed, the girls went a huckleberrying. Our folks commenced mowing. Cut the grass in the orchard.

Thursday 13th. A cool day—the wind in the northwest. A good fire is comfortable. We have been baking and spinning. Do not feel very well. Charley E. has been to Mrs. Whites—moving bee. Chas. made his haying rigging. Lucina has gone to Post Office.

Friday 14th. A very pleasant day—Attalia and I went huckle-berrying. Eddy came after us for we had company—some that I was rejoiced at. My dear father and Uncle Elijah. What a good visit we are having—we had some calls tonight—Lo and Una, Erastus and May. Pa and Uncle E. told stories and Charlie E. sang songs. Visited till 11 o'clock.

Saturday 15th. Got up early and prepared breakfast. Visited all the time there was with father—he had to start at 6 o'clock for Cameron to take the cars for Elmira. 1 went to see Una. She has a very sore mouth. I came home with a bad headache and went to bed Commenced raining at 3 o'clock—poor hay weather. Lucina has gone up to Mr. Frisbee's to stay with Augusta tonight.

Sunday 16th. Rained all night and all the afternoon. Mr. Ed-monds and his wife and Mr. J. Van Houghton and wife was here to tea. David Lochery called. No meeting today.

Monday 17th. Charles has several hands to help him chop and I have my hands full. Tallie went up to help Mrs. White.

Tuesday 18th. A pleasant day. Lucina went to Homellsville to see the elephant. 1 washed, churned, and had work hands to get dinner for—took dinner with Mrs. Powell. Mrs. Creesy was here to tea this afternoon and have to call to Mr. Whites. Now have I not done well—feel tired to night and must go to bed. I would not give me a cent to have so much to do every day.

Wednesday 19th. A rainy day—commenced raining at 1 o'clock—caught us with a lot of hay out. 1 went out and help! rake till the rain drove me in. Spun this afternoon. Granny Creesy went to Levi's and Lucina stays with Elisa and Granny tonight.

Thursday 20th. Cleared off today and made good haying. Mrs. S. Drake and Mrs. Jones was here a visiting. Granny Creesy quite sick.

Friday 21st. A fine day. Our folks improved their time and got in all their hay that was out. Lucina sent over to B. A.'s, called on Granny and Mrs. White. They were both quite sick.

Saturday 22nd. A fine shower and foggy morning. Charles went to Bennetsville today. Attalia came home today from Whites.

Sunday 23rd. A fine day. I went to Sabbath School and then called on the sick. Sam Downs came home today. Sim Turner came from Bath. 1 called on him—he had a hard time of it with his eyes. More soldiers returning home after the war.

Monday 24th. Still pleasant. Eddy went after Lucina. I have felt rather tired today. Sat up with Granny Creesy last night. Sim called today.

Tuesday 25th. Showery today. I spun sticky yam for Mrs. D. and called on Mrs. Creesy. The girls washed and baked. Lucina called on Levi's Lino, Dave and Jo called this eve.

Wednesday 26th. A pleasant day—quite warm. I went up to school this forenoon to visit Amos school—took dinner to Erastus's and tea to Mrs. W. D.—then called on Mrs. Diamond. Found her quite bad with rheumatism.

Thursday 27th. A fine day, quite warm. 1 have been busy all day. Han J. called to get Lucina to go to work for her. Called on Granny. The children went to surprise at Van Houghton's.

Friday 28th. Wrote two letters today to Elizah and to Aunt Elisa. A very warm pleasant day. Looks showery.

Saturday 29th. A shower last night. Cloudy today. Been quite busy and some tired tonight.

Sunday 30th. A pleasant day—went to Sabbath School this morning and to meeting this afternoon. A good sermon from Lord's Prayer.

Monday 31st. Attalia went berrying. Idone the work. John Benom cut our wheat. Charles finished haying. I mowed away 3 loads—feel quite smart about it.

August 1865

Tuesday 1st. 1 washed today and churned and made three calls to Mrs. Van H., Mrs. P. and Mrs. C. Charles worked for Angel.

Wednesday 2nd. One of the hardest showers that we've had this summer visited our place today—the rain fell in torrents for a long time. John Benom and wife, Ed Angle took dinner here today. Tried to spin but don't make out much.

Thursday 3rd. A very warm day, looks showery. Chas. and I went to Marks a visiting. We had a good visit. Granny Creasy had another sick spell tonight. I must watch her tonight.

Friday 4th. A very warm day—commenced raining about noon, rained very hard till night. Charles went to help Angel and Eddy went to help Levi. I called on Granny Creasy. Think she is better. Dance at Sawyer's. Lucina went, had quite a time I guess. Oh, why need there be a dance.

Saturday 5th. Went to Bath—traded twenty-five dollars-came home had calb—N., L, R. Had a sing. Feel quite tired. Hope I shall feel better tomorrow. Lucina came home.

Sunday 6th. Went to Sabbath School as usual—had a good school. Spent the day in reading and writing. Called on Granny Creasy.

Monday 7th. I washed and kept quite busy with other work. Called to M. a short time. A pleasant day.

Tuesday 8th. 1 went berrying, Eddy, Attalia, Willie and Una P., got a fine lot. Got home just in time to escape a shower.

Wednesday 9th. I spun and twisted stocking yarn. Make shirt. Had calls. Attalia went down to Mark Jones'. Pleasant day.

Thursday 10th. A rainy day. Charles . came home from Marks—my work as usual. Elisa called—felt very bad about Sanford.

Friday 11th. Still rainy weather. I called on Mrs. Van H. and to Hans and Elisa and on to Jo Lochery. Chas. worked in shop. C. E. went to Troupsburg.

Saturday 12th. Cleared off this morning—been very pleasant this afternoon. Chas. went to Cameron, came home in first rate time and strait. Eddy went a fishing, came home very tired—eat a wolfs meal and went to sleep.

Ed. Note: Apparently her husband has a drinking problem when he goes to town.

Sunday 13th. A pleasant day, went to S. S. this morning. Sarah and Hannah was there. Came down after school—stayed till meeting. Eddy has been quite sick so I could not leave him. The young folks came in and they had a sing.

Monday 14th. A pleasant day. Eddy has been quite sick all day. Chas. drawed his barley in today. Charles and Charlie cut their hay and drawed one load home.

Tuesday 15th. Lucina took some yam down to Mrs. Drake. My work in taking care of Eddy mostly, today.

Wednesday 16th. A.P.D. Eddy seems some better today. Chas. drawed his hay from Hawkins. Charley started for the pic-nick to Greenwood.

Tuesday 17th. Mrs., Powell went to see Doc Riddel—he sent some medicine for Eddy. He is no better—very high fever. My work is the same as usual. Mrs. P. called. Jennie Van Houghton and James Strait was here to tea.

Friday 18th. Was a pleasant day. Eddy is quite comfortable today. Some calls. Elisa had her bee today. Chas. E. got home from picnick. May and Jennie and Erastus and Daniel called here tonight.

Saturday 19th. Still very pleasant. Chas. went to mill—C.E. cradled today. Eddy is still quite sick. I lost my bread last night, quite mysterious—hope 1 shan't anymore. The girls washed, ironed cleaned and so forth. 1 took care of my boy and did what 1 could. Mrs. llanda Holmes came here tonight. It is just four years today since we first looked on the Swale and how short the time appears, to look back.

(I have repeated two days—a sad mistake.)

Friday 18th. A very pleasant day. Eddy has been very sick— he has not set up today. 1 feel most tired but that will pass off. Mrs. Downs had her bee today—Chas. helped her now. C. E. got home from that picnic about 11 o'clock—rather a foolish move for a sensible man. Charley raked E's. hay this afternoon. Mrs. P., May Dickey, Jenny Van H. called. Lucina went a huckleberry-ing again today.

Saturday 19th. Today has passed like all other days. Eddy is still sick. Chas. went to Bennetsville mill. C. E. cradled spring wheat. Lucina and Attalia done housework and I have taken care of my poor boy. I went to M. P. P.'safew minutes this afternoon. Cousin Ilanda Holmes came here tonight from Troupsburg.

Sunday 20th. This is my fortieth birthday. It does not seem that I am really getting old so fast. Mrs. Holmes is with us today. Mr. Diamond called and Lucina had a call on her. Well I am old now but once I was young as she is. Eddy is still quite sick. I went to S. S. this morning.

Monday 21st. 1 went down to see our foller burn today. It burned fine but a shower put it out too soon. Mr. Holmes left this morning. The girls washed today.

Eddy is no better—gets high fever. Anna and Elisa called to see Eddy and brought him some apples. Mrs. Powell called. Still rainy.

Ed. Note: There is probably an interesting story here, if only I knew it. The Hackett's had bought the farm from a family named Holmes. Are these the people visiting? Granny Creesey (correct spelling of this name, or at least the way it is spelled on the family tomb-stones in the Swale cemetery—Abigail spells it both Creesy and Creasy in the diary but never correctly) was a Holmes. In fact, her father was named Oliver Holmes. I wonder if there was a connection with Oliver Wendell Holmes. Eddy is probably suffering from milk fever or undulant fever as it is called today—most of the children will have this summer fever during the course of the diary. It is a result of drinking unpasteurized milk. The foller she goes to watch burn is being cleared of forest—the best wood was used but most was piled and burned. Ironically the land Charles Hackett worked so hard to clear is back in forest as it proved too steep to farm with tractors.

Tuesday 22nd. A rainy day. Chas. is 45 years old today and I have not got him a present. What shall I do for one? Eddy is some better I think.

Wednesday 23rd. A cool cloudy day. Eddy is decidedly better today. Chas. has been very busy in the shop all day. I have knitted and took care of Eddy. The girls have done the housework. Lucina called on Mrs. Chapman—she is quite unwell. Charles E. went to Bennetsville today. Anna called to see Eddy. Mr. P. and Mrs. D. Chet Chilson took dinner here today.

Thursday 24th. A pleasant day. Chas. drawed in his wheat. I have had to watch Eddy especially close—he has been very weak and feeble today. I got quite alarmed about him tonight. Sent for Mrs. Powell—she is the only neighbor that comes near me. I wonder if they are afraid of the fever or if they don't want to come. Well I shall know who my good friends are after sickness. This would have been mother's birthday if she had lived.

Friday 25th. Another pleasant day. Eddy is certainly better today. I know it now and feel very thankful to our father who has spared him to us. Chas. cut a load of hay and drawed a load of wood. Willie and I rode down to the foller on the trucks tonight and had a lively time. Charles said we had all the benefits of the spring and I thought so too. C. E. has company tonight.

Saturday 26th. This has been a warm day. Mr. Vos and Mr. Alderman stayed here last night. Today we had several calls. D. Converse, Mrs. Downs, Mrs. Powell, Mrs. Perk Creasy; Eddy is not quite so well today. He seems most tired out. Chas. and C. E. worked for Hatch today.

Sunday 27th. Warm and pleasant. Eddy seemed so much worse that we thought it best to send for Dr. Mitchell this morning, but he is slow about coming. It is now six o'clock and he has not come yet. Eddy has been rather better today. I did not go to Sabbath School today. Mrs. Butler's boys furnished all, sermon was preached today at our school house. Some how I feel very sad tonight—why I can't tell—perhaps I am only nervous and it will pass off. I heard that Charley Greek was murdered—how awful.

Ed. Note: Charley Greek was a peddler.

Monday 28th. Pleasant day. Eddy seemed better today. I left him with the girls and went over to see Jacob Carrier—he is sick with the same fever of Eddy's. He is very sick Eddy has had a high fever this afternoon. Una called. I feel tired tonight—hope I shall feel better tomorrow.

Tuesday 29th. Still pleasant. Eddy is better today., Attalia took Willie to school today—while I washed. Lucina sewed on my dress. Charley cradled oats. Chas. worked in shop. Mat Converse and wife called this afternoon. Una called. I feel tired tonight— hope I shall feel better tomorrow.

Wednesday 30th. A very warm day—my business as usual— done some chores around the house and tended to Eddy. He is very weak today. Lucina called on Jacob Converse. Chas. E. shot 5 pigeons.

Thursday 31st. Another warm day. I have not done much besides nursing—he had a very poor night last night but is better today. Hope he will soon be able to sit up again. Charles went to Bennetsville today and got some notions for Eddy. Una called tonight. Feel very tired tonight.

© 1998, George Dickey
Introduction, Jan. - Feb. 1865, Mar. 1865, Apr.-May 1865, Jun.-Aug. 1865, Sept.-Nov. 1865,
Dec. 1865-Feb. 1866, Mar. - May 1866, Jun.-Aug. 1866, break, Nov. 1866-Feb. 1867,
Mar. 1867, May-June 1867
, Households on the Swale
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