Monday, June 16, 2014

Diaries: Aug/Nov 1911 - Pickin' Cotton


            This summer has been a very uneventful one in my life. There has but very few things happened of any importance or out of the ordinary. I get tired some times of the daily routine of keeping house and long for a whole summer of vacation and rest.
            I had planned all winter to go on a visit to my Uncle’s this summer but won’t get to go.
            One of the Granbury College boys -Claude W.- came to see me the first Sunday in August (Aug 6) He came on Sat eve and we all went to a neighbors house that night and made ice cream. We had a delightful time while he was here talking about old school days. And w-e-ll - that wasn’t all we talked about either, cause we decided we would marry some of these times and set that some time for next June.
            I’ve been engaged lots of times before, but it never did mean anything to me for I didn’t really aim to marry and would set the time so far off that I thought we would quit before the time came.
            I’ve never really loved but one boy before. But there is one other boy in this old wide world that I really did love, and do love yet, and always will love I guess. He was my first real Sweet Heart. He began going with me when I was fifteen and the last time I saw him I was eighteen. He thought equally as much of me as I did of him.
            I don’t guess there ever will be a boy care any more for me than he did for he has proved in numberless of different ways the true love he had in his heart for me. The last time I heard from him was the first of last May about 4 months ago now. We won’t marry because Papa is so bitterly opposed to it and I guess he isn’t just the boy that would suit me best, but he won my first love and I’ll always have a great regard for him.
            I never will forget the night he first ask me to marry him. We went to preaching about three miles from home us and some other couples. I wore a blue lilly in my hair that night and I still have it yet. I have him my hand on it that I would marry him. I was fifteen and he was eighteen then. Yes I know we were quite young. Well I’m getting of off the subject I started on but I couldn’t be so untrue to my old love as to say I never loved a boy before.
            But there has a new love come into my life and as the days go by I am tending to forget the old S.H.
            I think Claude is a grand old boy and I think as much or more, of him as I ever did of anyone. I am now wearing his ring as a token of our love and engagement and intend to marry him when the time comes.
            Claude did so cute when he went to tell me good bye it made me care more for him. He took my hand and holding it he looked me straight in the face and said; “I hate so bad to leave you. I want you to be good to your self and write to me often.” He looked so deeply in earnest it made me love him better.
            He wore a rainbow colored tie one day while he was here that I have him for a birthday present and when he came I had on a stick pin that he had given me as an xmas gift. (August 21, 1911)

            Mr Thompson came down on the evening train Sunday evening (Sept 10) and spent the evening and till late bed time with me and then went back home on the night train. I never had gone to the station to meet him when he came in, and at the picnic he said he guessed if I lived just across the street from the depot I wouldn’t step over then to meet him, and I told him the next time he came I would go to meet him.
            So when he wrote me he was coming he reminded me of my promise to meet him. There was no one at home but Papa and me and he was fevering some. I went to meet him and there sure was a crowd at the depot as there usually is on Sunday. We had a very enjoyable time. We walked down to the church which is just a few yards from our house, to the young peoples League at 4 oclock as I was on the program to read a paper on “How should we exercise our spiritual lives.” Sunday night we went to preaching at the Baptist church as there was not going to be any preaching at the Methodist church. By the way he is a strong Baptist. I always have more Baptist fellows than Methodist any way. Bro has been gone to Evandale to Uncle Ladells for a few weeks, he will spend the fall there picking cotton with them. Grandma has also been to <Erath Co> on a visit, so I’ve been by myself quite a good deal lately as Papa isn’t at home much in day time. (Sept 13, 1911)

            Salem              I came down here to Salem in Erath, Co Sept 16th to pick cotton this fall. I had been here before visiting my aunt and cousins and had met several of the people. I first picked cotton for a family living near my aunt’s. A young man and his mother and sister make up the family (Ogan) and I was never around finer people. I had a dandy time the three weeks I picked there. They had a patch of fine watermelon and althoe Mr Jim didn’t like them him self, and we would cut one every day after dinner and then very often he would carry one to the waggon in the morning and put it in the <strade> and Miss Hannah and me would stop about the middle of the evening and eat it. My! But we sure did devour some fine watermelons, and enjoyed them too. Mr Jim (Ogan) sure was good to us. But he is always as good to his mother and sister, as most boys are to their Sweet Hearts. He very often calls Miss H “honey” and to cap it all one day we were picking along and he said, something to her and called her honey, and I answered him and didn’t know till after I had what he had called her. He looked real funny and it sure did get to me. Miss Hannah very often played on the guitar and sang at night. I enjoyed that too, but I can’t tell much more about my stay there.
            I felt real lonesome when I started to leave and they all seemed to hate to see me leave. I’ve heard lots of good things that they’ve said about me. I felt flattered a little when I first came down here, I heard of so many nice compliments passed on me. I am vain enough, like the most of humanity, to like to hear all the good things said about me.
            I’ve picked cotton about three weeks for a Mr Bud Burgess and enjoyed my stay there too. Mrs Burgess gave me a real pretty Geranium plant it is in bloom now. I don’t guess there is any one that likes flowers better than I do.
            I’m having a nice time on my cotton picking “spree” and it is the first I have picked in about four years and the last I guess I’ll pick in a good while. (Oct 18,1911)

            Salem              I am real proud of Bro, althoe, I do get worried to death at his recklessness. Seems to me sometime that he is the most noisy and thoughtly boy I ever knew. He declares our home would be as quiet as a grave yard if it wasn’t for his fun and racket. Well I don’t care to miss it any way for it is lonesome at home when he isn’t there. He is just begging to claim the girls, and I know he will be a case when he gets grown. None of the girls can get ahead of him now. He is just fifteen. He has been picking cotton for Mr Burgess, and there was a girl about 16 years old, picking for him too. She would rather pick with Bro than me and they pick together nearly all the time. They could both pick faster than anyone else in the field any way. One day Bro didn’t been picking and late in the evening he came over to the field and was picking along putting in our sacks. After while he picked an extra large handfull and held it up and said he would give it to the highest bidder. I said I’de give him a Yankie Dime (kiss) and he looked around at the other girl and said; “Will you give that for it?” She said “yes” and to my surprise he stepped over to her sack and put the cotton in, and said “now pay your debt.” and she kissed him, we sure did laugh. That’s the first girl he has kissed that wasn’t related to him. Velma Stone is her name. She knows how to flirt and is pretty talkative, but she couldn’t get a head of him. She would bring him some apples or peaches or something every day. (Oct 1911)


            Salem              Life is not all sunshine by a good deal. I was nearly blind with sore eyes a week or two ago and I saw very little sunshine then. It is sure bad to have something wrong with ones eyes. It nearly killed me to be so I couldn’t read or do any kind of fancy work. I was closed up in a dark room one Sunday (Nov 6) and kept <poltices> on my eyes most of the time. The week that my eyes were sore would have seemed like months but Genoa Moore (my cousin) read to me a great deal. She read or began reading a little book “Stepping Heavenward” which I sure did enjoy. It is some thing like a diary and it made me the one I was writing, only of course it was better than mine but I let one of my cousins (Maudie Moore) read it and she said it was better than “Stepping Heavenward.” She is the first person that has ever read any of mine. (Nov 14, 1911)

Friday, June 13, 2014

Diary May/ July 1911: a right smart of damage

            We moved from Duster back near DeLeon last Monday, and my! What a week of work this has been (this is Sat)
            I’m so sore from head to foot I can’t hardly move. The 11th of last month was my 20th birthday. Grandma surprised me by giving me a quilt top, I’de been wishing for pieced out of <colars>. It’s the prarie flower design and is real pretty. One of the boys sent me a pair of white silk elbow gloves. Those were the most important things I got. (May 6, 1911)

            Last Friday a week ago June 16, we had a pretty bad storm and hail. The old settlers said that it is the worst that has been here in several years. I guess it lasted for at least an hour, raining in almost a torrant all that time.
            Our old cellar wasn’t very good any way so it couldn’t resist such hard rain, and the water ran in at the door. We stayed in there till the water was nearly knee deep - Papa, Grandma, and me. Bro was away from home. We got out of the cellar and as we came in the house at the back, the front door blew down. Papa caught it and put it back in place and we held it there till the storm was over. It wasn’t easy to hold either with the wind against it. We thought every minute that the house would go the next and it would have I guess if we hadn’t held the door up. From some cause or another we didn’t seem to be much frightened. We went on the plan that we had as well laugh as to cry, so we talked and laughed about it all during the storm. I was really surprised at my self at not getting frightened our of my wits. After the storm was over almost every thing in the house was wet as the water leaked and blowed in so in places. Several pictures blowed down and the stove pipe blowed down inside and out. Things were us set generally but no serious damage done.
            We got off lighter than most of our neighbors as some of their houses blowed off of the blocks some wind mills blowed down and a right smart of damage done.
            The crops through here were almost completely destroyed. There was nothing but <strins> left of the cotton where it wasn’t completely washed away. But that’s enough about the storm.
            To day was 22 years ago Papa was at a State Teachers Association at Galveston. Papa taught ten years before he married. He began teaching when he was 18 years old. (June 25, 1911)

            Last Wednesday and Thursday, June 28 and 29th - There was a big picnic and prohabition rally at DeLeon. There was hundreds of people here and every body seemed to enjoy them selves.
            There was a farris wheel, merry-go-round, a fine band from Walnut Springs and all kinds of stands most on the ground. We had about three speeches a day, all on prohabition. They were sure fine too.
            Mr Thompson from Carlton came down on Thurs and we had a nice time. We stayed on the picnic grounds Thurs night till after eleven oclock and they hadn’t broken up then. That is the first time he has been down to see me since last summer. To day is a year ago I was at the S. Normal at Ft. Worth and went to lake Como. (July 3, 1911)

            The Methodist protracted meeting has been going on for two weeks, and Sunday evening July 23rd Bro Bickley, our pastor, preached to the men and boys at the Tabernacle and Bro Sherrod, the Baptist pastor, preached to the ladies and girls at the baptist church. Every one seemed to enjoy the sermon so much. He preached about knowing God and being well aquainted with him. He spoke of some people having the summer religion, and then he talked of the great influence young ladies have over young men. He dwelt on young people so often spending their energy on frivolous worldly things, and of what a power they could be for God if they would. He said a Christian aught to spend at least one hour a day in reading the Bible and prayer.

            I began to realize as I never did before the importance of a person having a set time to read and pray every day, in order to be a true Christian all the year round. I resolved while he was reaching that from then on, every day of my life I would spend at least an hour a day in prayer and reading the Bible and other good religious books. (July 24, 1911)

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Diaries Dec 1910/April 1911: Men were quite pushy, even then.

I have to admit that the last entry made me feel a twinge of guilt about doing this little project - but her concern elicited sympathy and understanding (from me anyway) and I didn't see anything she needed to be embarrassed about. Like I said earlier, her mother had passed, her grandmother was getting up there in years, and she had to pick up a lot of the slack. I can't blame her for wanting a way out every now and then.

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           I refrain most of the time from wrighting about the little troubles and difficulties, I have to meet with all along. But it seems to me they are many. Life is such a struggle it seems like some times. And then things you work so hard at and are so anxious about are so often failures. It is sure hard on a girl to keep things straight at home when she is the only on to do. When I came home they had been moved to the community where Papa and I were going to teach school; several days and the house is just an old thing with three rooms and not sealed over head. The rooms had been papered with news paper and they were soiled and torn up badly but this was the only house vacant. Well there hadn’t been any body to straighten things up much after moving, as Grandma wasn’t able and Papa was studying for examination and didn’t have time. So the rooms were to paper and scour and the pictures to put up, books to unpack and arrange in the bookcase and straightening generally to do. Well I’ve been at work the hardest kind for about two weeks, and am about to get things looking decent at least. (Dec 12, 1910)

            I spent my first day in the school room teaching Jan 2, 1911. I’ll not forget soon. how cold it was that day either, I had been looking forward to the time when I could begin teaching for quite a while. I have had a very nice time so far, as I haven’t had the least bit of trouble. But teaching is sure tiresome. I have enrolled 31 up to date. (Jan 14, 1911)

            Today is the first day of Feb. I made our my first monthly report and as teachers have to swear to their reports Papa and I went down to the <P.G.> with them this evening and was sworn. That was the first time  ever was sworn about anything. That finished up my first months teaching.
            We’ve been reading a continued story (not a love story) in the “Youth’s Companion” and we got the paper that continued the last chapter of it today. The title of the story was “Five Miles Out,” and it sure was fine. Papa enjoyed it as much as we did. He read the last chapter aloud this evening the first thing he did when he got back from school. He very often reads the continued stories in the Youth Companion and he always enjoys them as they are usually fine. This last on thoe I believe is the best we have had. (Feb 1, 1911)

            To day was such a lovely day; the birds have been singing, the sunshine is so warm and every thing seems to say Spring has come. Our co superintendent was at our school to day and he made the pupils a nice talk. In the evening I had the exam for the fourth grade and that sure is tiresome on a teacher. I came home almost too tired to move. I’m always glad when Fri evening comes for that means too days of rest. Or at least it means too days out of the school room but I usually have enough work at home to do to keep me busy. (March 3, 1911)

            I have hung another picture in the picture gallery of my mind, and have enrolled another name to my list of “Fellows” or Sweet Hearts which ever you would rather call it. The name is Homer Ross. He is just a boy two years my junior. He is only 18 years old. He is a little taller than myself, has light hair, gray eyes and is light complected. Homer is the first by to go with me younger than myself. He has been with me every Sunday for the last three Sunday’s. Last Sunday he tried to get me to kiss him good bye and said he wouldn’t have a girl who wouldn’t kiss him before they married. He kept begging me to kiss him and finally he said “Well if you don’t think enough of me to kiss me good bye, we had as well quit,” and I told him alright. He talked on a while and then said, “no I don’t want you to kiss me now, I was just trying you to see if you would.” I’ve had boys try to get me to kiss them good bye “To prove my love” but I don’t prove my love that way. We went to Turkey Creek yesterday evening to singing and had a very nice time but when we got home they were just coming out of the dining room and we had missed our supper but we went in and ate some any way and when we got through I washed the dishes and he dried them. (April 10, 1911)

            I guess I’m supposed to tell this old diary every thing that happens in my life, of any importance but often I’m just a little bashful, for fear some one else will know it besides my dear old diary some time.
            Occasionally when some thing comes up at home that I don’t like (I don’t mean just any little thing) I will (to myself) declare I will marry the next chance I get. Well one of those times came when a while back when Papa mentioned his intentions of moving back to DeLeon soon. That was on Saturday and I thought to my self; “I’ll marry the next chance I get and quit moving so much.”

            The next day one of my fellows came to see me and actually proposed to me. So I told myself; “Now here is your chance if you want to marry and try a new life.” but I was over my vexation of the day before and couldn’t think of marrying then. And that’s the way I usually am (April 1911)

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Diary Nov 1910: a girl can’t have two or three real sweethearts at once

            Granbury Texas           We (dormitory girls) always look forward to the Literary Society night with a great deal of pleasure, as they let us have a few minutes social after the society and we are allowed to talk to the boys a while. Last night when my chum and myself went in two of the boys came around and sit down by us and stayed all during the society. We were a little afraid we would get a scolding, but we didn’t. It was real funny three of us girls were in the parlor playing on the piano and singing and one of the dormitory boys came in. He hadn’t been in there long till we thought we heard one of the teachers step up on the front gallery. The young man hid behind the piano and sure enough it was Prof Russel. After a while us girls went to our rooms and turned out the light in the parlor and hall so he could slip out with out the teacher seeing him. We have lots of fun at our meanness once in a while but some of the other girls have gotten into trouble occasionally too. But fortunately for my room mate and me we have escaped so far. (Nov 22, 1910)

            Granbury Texas           There is one thing sure a girl can’t have two or three real sweethearts at once, especially if they all live in the same community. I’ve been receiving and returning a little attention to three different boys here at school. Not real sweet hearts of course but just to have a nice time and I find it causes me more real trouble than any thing else. It wasn’t so much trouble till this week, but as I’m going home Saturday each one tries to talk to me every good chance he gets, not so much, I guess because he likes me so well but to spite the other fellow. Now at the literary society one of them was there talking to me and another one came up and spoke and began to talk too, and after a while the other one happened by and spoke. Well well they were all three there talking to the crowd as there was several of us standing there talking. But I tried to stand so I wouldn’t have my back to any of them and I was perfectly miserable.
            To day as one of the girls and myself were going up to the college at noon there was five or six boys standing on the gallery and one of them came running to meet us, for meanness and said; Cland and Charlie were quarrelling about me and he told them he would tell me to speak to the one I liked best. Oh I was so mortified I didn’t know what to do. I never felt so hateful. I went across that gallery quicker than I had in a good while and didn’t even look at any of them. The boys were just talking in fun and didn’t think about that silly boy telling me what he said he would. But it sure did make me feel bad the rest of the evening and showed me how silly it was to pay attention to more than one. (Nov 22, 1910)


            I came home from Granbury College on Nov 26. We had a nice time there on Thanksgiving (Nov 24). We had a nice dinner at the dormitory and a few friends were invited to take dinner with us. Our president suspended the rules that day and we went to services at the church in the morning and walked around in the evening. My room mate and my self and our beaus stayed together almost all evening. One of the preacher boys going to school there (Ozier Hightower) was with me. I think he is simply the finest young man out. You can draw from his conversations that he has such high ideals and ambitions. We had several Kodaks taken during the after noon. The next day, in the evening before I was to start home in the night, so many of the students came around to tell me good bye, and wish me well, and saying they would miss me so much, it made me real lonesome. I thought a great deal of all of the students going there. You sure do miss school mates after leaving school. I hated to stop to teach so bad, but my school was soon to begin and I had to stop. (Nov 29, 1910)

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Diary Oct/Nov 1910: train tracks and beaus


            Granbury, Tex             We (the dormitory girls) have been a little extra jolly to day. When we started to dress for breakfast we all wore something what wasn’t ours. I borrowed a belt some of the girls borrowed dresses and first one thing and another till we all had on something borrowed. And we nearly all got some mail that day, that helped and so we were having fun all day. I sure does do one good when they are of from home going to school to get lots of mail. Oct 1, 1910

            Granbury, Tex             Prof Russel comes up to the dormitory every evening at seven and holds a prayer meeting in the parlor of the dormitory girls. The boys are not supposed to go in the parlor at all when the girls are in there, but they do every once in a while; and to night we were in the parlor playing the piano and singing and one of the boys was in there (Jeff Cornet) Prof Russel was nearly here before we saw him so Jeff told one of the girls to get out of the window so he could jump out, then he ask how long it would last and we told him 15 minutes. So he said, “Well, I’ll just get in the pantry.” (which was in one corner of the parlor) But he couldn’t pass the window with out the Prof seeing him so he got on his knees and crawled past the window and got in the pantry which was almost air tight.
            So Prof Russel and the girls all came in and we that knew it were so tickled we couldn’t keep quiet. Finally, the Prof and the rest of the girls begin to ask us what we were so tickled about. Some said they didn’t see any thing to laugh at, but finally we got quiet without having to tell. After the prayer meeting was over and the Prof gone, Jeff came out of the pantry amid a room of laughter and declared that was the longest 15 minutes he ever saw pass. (Oct 6, 1910)

            Granbury Texas           A young man, Mr Parrell, who is here leading sing for the protracted meeting was at the college to day and made the school a talk at chapel. He was very handsome and well educated and sure did make a good talk. He said he had the greatest admiration for a boy that could not go to school other wise who would work their way through. He had worked his way through. He took an A.M. degree from the Chicago University and then spent 4 years in a medical school. Now he say’s he is just beginning to see how ignorant he is. He said a man had better spend thirty nine years in preparation for life and then, just live one, than spend one year in preparation and live 39. (Oct 13, 1910)

            A crowd of us young folks had been planning to go to Comanche Peak; Some small mts about 8 miles from here. So the matron asked the president if he would suspend the rules and take us and he said he would as it would be Haloween. So we got up early yesterday morning to cook our dinner to take with us. There was 20 of us in all that went, counting the Matron, the President, and a married man that keeps the dormitory and his wife. The boy’s hired a common size waggon and put some hay in it and we all gor started by 10 oclock. My! How we wee packed, and jammed, and crammed in that waggon for there was 15 rode in it. We sure did have the fun thoe and by the time we got there it was dinner time so we spread our dinner and ate the first thing.
            We had a Kodak along and we took a view of the dinner spread on the table cloth and us sitting around it. After dinner we all went up on one of the peaks and had some Kodaks made.
            A we were coming back, the boy that was with me and myself played “Hull Gull” and “Even or Odd” with cedar balls. Nearly all of us girls were sunburned or blistered by the time we got home. But we sure did have a nice day of it. Yes and last Sat night a crowd of young folks gathered here at the Dormitory and made candy and when we got through with the candy we gathered in the parlor and had some music. We sure had a nice time that night. But such times as these don’t come to us very often while we are in college. (Nov 1, 1910)

            Granbury Texas           Last Sunday was my last Sunday here so I was wishing we could have a nice time, but my roommate and I came up to our room after dinner Sunday, without any hopes for any thing but a long lonesome Sunday evening.
            As we usually have to come up to our rooms and sit around all evening on Sundays that is the time we get homesick and lonesome.
            So we came in and my roommate (Eva Crews) went to wrighting and I fell over across the bed to try to sleep. In a few minutes Mrs Kidd came in and said she wished we could walk over to the reunion grounds. So we decided to ask our matron if she wouldn’t let us go with Mrs Kidd and she said we could. We hadn’t been over there very long till two of the dormitory boys came over there. All the other girls just happened to have company and we saw them leave the dormitory going walking.
            So the boys went with us and we walked about a mile to the railroad trussel across the river. We decided, after the boys insisting, that we would walk the trussel as far as the edge of the water anyway, which was about 50 yards. Us girls were scared of course but as the boys held our arms we walked very well. One of the couples stopped before we got to the edge of the water and started back, but we said we wouldn’t “Pike” so we went on and just as we got to the water’s edge we heard a train whistle in the distance.
            There we were out in the middle of that trussel and it was so far from the ground to jump off would near sure death.
            It sure did scare us as there was no way to get off the track till we got to the end of the trussel and we didn’t know wheather we could walk it or not before the train came along. But we started back walking as fast as we could and every body began to hollow to us to hurry and get of the train was coming. The more they would hollow the worse we got scared till finally when we did step off on the ground I was trembling, I was so frightened. We had just gotten off a few minutes when the train came dashing along.
            The next day at the dinner table they were trying to tease us about it. One of the boys began it by saying; “If I hadn’t been for Claud helping her off the trussel, Miss Wheeler wouldn’t be with us to day.” They kept making up things and telling till we all laughed till we couldn’t. But it wasn’t funny to any of them while we were on the trussel.

            We sure did have a nice time that evening if we did get into danger. As we came on home we had to pass by a negro church as they were having services, two couples of us stopped in there a while and that was a sight to us too. Of course the President scolded us a little for the rules were not suspended, and we were not supposed to have company unless they were. But as our Matron is a young woman she and one of the teachers was with us and every dormitory girl had a beau. (Nov 21, 1910)

Monday, June 9, 2014

August/September 1910

I took last week off work and kept my computer (actually, both computers, both iPads, and my iPhone) powered down as much as possible - two things shocked me. First - how HARD it was to go 24 hours at a time without electronic stimulation, and Second - how much easier life is when I go 24 hours at a time without electronic stimulation. I got so much writing done, walked a total of roughly 100 miles in those 9 days, and spent a lot of time sitting and watching the bay. I would love about five more stretches like that! I think I'm going to designate three days a week to be 'no computer' days - that may last about 10 minutes.

Anyway, here's the new stretch of text from Irene's diaries. Aug and Sept 1910. It's good to see that something else runs in the family too.

"I allow so many things to attract my attention and time." You and me both, g-g-ma, you and me both.


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            I came home July 21 from Forth Worth. I sure was glad to get home althoe I had only been gone 5 weeks. I sure had a time getting started home. Mr Thomson had written me if I would let him know when I was coming home I would let him know, he would meet me in Dublin; where I cad to change cars and stay nearly half the day. So I wrote him I would be there Monday. But I found out Sat I couldn’t go then so I wrote him a letter and put a special delivery stamp on it so he would be sure to get it and told him I wouldn’t be there till Wed. Well I couldn’t get there Wed so I phoned him Tues eve, I wouldn’t be there till Thurs, but was there Thurs and he was at the train to meet me and stayed till I got on the next train for home. So my stay in Dublin was quite pleasant. (Aug, 1910)

            Yesterday was so hot and sultry. I was at home by my self and was trying to study. But I couldn’t get my mind on my book. Finally I laid my book down and said I’de go to the mail box (which was about 150 yds from the house), As I didn’t have enough sense to study. As I was going on, my thoughts ran something like this: “There isn’t much in life any way, but a struggle. And then failure, comes more often than success. I am simply tired of every thing, and of ever trying to do anything.” I certainly was in a bad mood, which I try never to get into. But some times it looks like I can’t help it. I sometimes wonder if any body else ever have such feelings as that, and yet I know they do. I guess every body has their difficulties and things that seem to utterly discourage them at times. Well when I got to the mail box I had 3 post cards and 2 letters, and they were all so cherry and kind it was a wonder to me how my feelings changed. I thought then, “what  pleasure it is to have such nice friends. Life must be worth living after all.” and I came home feeling like it was really worth while to try. And this is the way things of all through life. A sunny smile, a kind word or two, a cherry letter and things we do like that, that we never think are worth while, some times makes some one take new courage. Altho we never thought perhaps of them feeling bad or discouraged. The world would be so much brighter if we would take time to do little kind things that seem so small. (Aug 25, 1910)

            Woman suffrage is the main subject now. You can’t pick up any paper but what there is a discussion going on about woman suffrage. I noticed in the Youth’s Companion a piece saying they had it before the house of commons in England and when the vote was cast there was 15 for and 16 against it. I don’t think it will be very long will they will pass a law here giving the women a rite to vote. They vote in some of the states now. (Aug 25, 1910)

            I suppose all girls are prone to often wonder what will happen in the future. I have such a great ambition, and yet it seems like some times I moove so slowly I often wonder will I have some of my desires and ambitions fulfilled by this time next year, I wonder what events, what persons and things will come into my life by that time. I’m wanting most of all to her a first grade certificate by next summer, and I know if I get it I will have to put fourth an extra great effort, and I allow so many things to attract my attention and time. I now here in Granbury going to school at “Granbury College.” As I look back I well remember the things that happened a year ago today. For one thing that I thought was very important, one of my old fellows that I hadn’t seen in over a year came down to DeLeon to see me. That night I cried my self to sleep (Just from some little trouble that vexed me, not about my fellow thoe) as I used to do every once and a while, but I’ve learned better than that now. I try to always look on the bright side. Oh! I’ve longed so often for a mother to tell my little troubles to, but I’ve always had to bear them alone. There are so many troubles, or girls think they are troubles, that girls have to face, they need a mother to help them.

            This eve the matrons suspended the rules and took a lot of girls and boys down on the river Kodaking. We had about 12 views taken. We sure did enjoy it for we had been tied up so long. What tickled me I caught the Bookkeeping teacher here, and he’s a young Methodist preacher too. The Methodist protracted meeting is going on here now. I led the college girls’ prayer meeting to night. I certainly did get lots of good out of the meeting and resolved to live a better christian life from this on. We had a native preacher from Turkey at two services. Sep 26, 1910

Friday, May 30, 2014

Diaries - June and July, 1910; 100 Years and We Still Don't Care for the Metric System

Two of these entries are pretty disgusting. One is like a scene out of Sinclair's "The Jungle." Slaughterhouses always freak me out anyway.

The other one; well, let's just say that I am posting these unedited and in no way support all of the attitudes expressed in these diaries. I'll leave it at that.

(Edit: I was about to edit out the offending entry, but then I noticed the entry above it that sings the praises of a "good Christian influence at home" and thought the juxtaposition between the two was worth leaving it in.)

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            Fort Worth--  I came to Forth Worth last Wed morning June 22, to attend the summer normal. Am taking the first grade work, I had a time getting redy to come as I had all my sewing to do in a little over a wk. I had just been out in the country chopping. It was the first work in the field I had done in over two years, but I hadn’t decided I’de go to the normal and didn’t have any thing specially to do at home so I decided I’de go out in the country and chop cotton a while and get me a little spending mony of my own.
            I chopped cotton for a family I knew and just had bushels of fun. But that is wandering from what I started to tell. This is the first time I have gone to any size City by my self, but I got along fine. There are 225 students enrolled here. About 75 girls are boarding here at the “Ladies Home.” They are all jolly and don’t give any one time to get lonesome. Every evening after supper we all take a walk. I am rooming on the second floor with the jolliest most mischievous girl in the home. (June 26, 1910)

            I went down to the store the other day and got me a hair net. All the style now is to fix your hair in a turbon on the back of the head and put large hair pens in the sides, the hair net keeps the hair from blowing and being so easily torn up. 6/26 1910

            To day in physics class the Prof spoke of the centigrade thermometer being much handier than the farenhight thermometer, althoe the farenhight is used more. The centigrade is gradually coming into use. He said; “The school boy of 60 years ago, didn’t have to learn the metric system at all; but the school boy of today has to learn both systems. English and metric.” As the metric system is easier and becoming used more and more he thinks it very probable that the school boy of 50 years from now will have to learn the metric system only. The metric system is used very little now. Papa didn’t study the metric system when he was a school boy. Most of the text books have changed lots in the last few years. By the way, I’m about to find me a cute little fellow here. He has black eyes, black hair and is low and fleshy. How come us to ever get started; I was a little late at physics class one morning and there was a vacant seat by him so we got to talking and I just built to him. So he has come around and set by me several times in history class since then. That is all we’ve talked but I think it won’t be the last time. He sure is a “sporty old kid.” (July 1st, 1910)

            Yesterday eve Mrs Pinnington, the dean hear, ask my self and another one of the girls to go car riding that night with her so we went and stopped in town at a picture show. When we got the Mr Hunter (my black eyed fellow) and another normal boy were there. They left before we did but it just happened they caught the same car going home that we did. When we got out of the car the boys walked with us up to the house. (Mrs Pinningtons little girl was with her.) When we got here we sit down in the swing and talked a while. (July 2, 1910)

            To day is July 4th. I haven’t done a thing but sleep and study to day. But there was two picnics in town. Mr Hunter and my self went out the “Lake Como” yesterday eve and didn’t get back till 10.30 oclock last night and I was up till twelve the night before so I decided I’de rather sleep part of the day than go to a picnic. My, we had a “time” at Como. It is about 5 miles the other side of town. The lake is pretty and they have boats to of on the lake but we didn’t go boat riding. We stopped at the lake and ate some cream and listened to the band play a while and then went out into “Dream L and Park” It was well named I think for it was a lovely place to dream, we sat down in the Park and stayed till dusk and then came back to the lake and took a street car for home. The street cars were all fairly crowded but we did get a seat but all got in that could get standing room and then half couldn’t get on that wanted too. To day is four years a go I was at Stephensville, they had fine boys races. (July 4, 1910)

            To day a crowd of us girls we would go through the “Packing House.” The packing house is several miles (about 8) from here on the North side. One of the normal boys went to chaperone. There was four Polytechnic came to the <Union> depot and then went the rest of the way on the Stockyard car. When we got to the waiting room we had to wait 15 minutes for a guide. Finally the guide came and we started, there was about 30 to go through. We went up several small flights of stairs: and finally passed into a room where some of the meat was kept. Meat was hanging up all over the sealing, and the floor was lined with ice with some sawdust sprinkled over it. When we passed into the room we were prespiring we were so warm but before we got through we were so cold we were wishing for our cloaks.
            The men that work in those ice rooms, for there are several of them, wear over coats. But the awful sight was in the rooms were they clean cattle and cut them up. There was cows hanging up in that room all the way from cows jest knocked in the head and hung up, to the meat cleaned and redy to cut up and salt. The room floor was a pond of blood all over and men and boys by the hundreds, I guess, working in there skinning cows, cutting their throughts and so on.
            We watched them work a while and then passed on to the most cruel sight of all. In this part they were just killing hogs and calfes.
            The hogs would have a chain to their hind feet and that fastened to the sealing. They were knocked in the head and then drawn up by the machinery and a man stood there just sticking them. Some of them were kicking and the blood fairly flying some were already nearly dead. They were then dropped into a big vessel full of boiling water, some times before they had hardly quit kicking.
            Hogs squeeling, calves balling, the sight of butchery and blood and the roar of the machinery, all make a feeling of awe and horror came over one. It is wonderful the vast amount of meat they put out at that factory. They kill 5000 hogs an hr, 1750 sheep and 2000 cows. In some places we couldn’t hardly breathe for the bad scent in the air. The work was all carried on very nice thoe.
            Several girls were working in this factory. I have heard about girls working in the factories in the large cities, but I never had seen it before. I don’t see how any body can live in such a sickening degrading atmosphere as that must be.
            We went through both building the last one had an elivator in it. That was my first time to ride an elivator.
            We stopped by and saw five of their fine horses. They were bought from Germany. They asked all the way from $2000 to $5000 apiece for them, but they sure were large, and were perfect beauties. We certainly were tired when we got home, for we left about 1 oclock and got back a little after five. (July 11, 1910)

            They have prayer meeting here on Wed night just across the side walk a piece. I’ve always been used to going to the Wednesday night prayer meeting. So last Wed night when they began to sing, I just couldn’t study it made me think of home so much. I said I sure was going to quit my studying and go to the next prayer meeting and so I did. I enjoy nearly all the Christian services and am thankful for the good christian influence at home. (July 20, 1910)

            There was a prize fight in Nevada on the fourth of July, a white man, Jeffries and a negro Johnson, the negro whipped and they say the negros have given the whites trouble in several parts of the state since then. (July 1910)


            The election day seemed more exciting this year than usual. The main issue being “state wide prohibition.” The anti Gov was elected thoe. (Colquitt) (July 1910)