Search This Blog

Saturday, October 8, 2011

The Last of the Grapes

A Day in the Life:  October 8th

(Aged 14)

Wea.                                            THU. OCT. 8, 1896               Ther.

It rained last night.  Drove Topsie got her shod in the A.M. in P.M. put her in Woodcock’s barn.  Pa + Ma went to town.

(Aged 16)
Wea.                                            SAT. OCT. 8, 1898                 Ther.

Pa, Ma + Rollie went over to Corydon to Aunt Maryann’s.  I went to the factory then drew grandma a load of wood.  In P.M. went to the S.S. picnic up in Ed Harrington’s woods.  I umpired the ball game.  In eve went up to the store + Elmer Warn stayed with me all night.

(Aged 17)

Wea.                                             SUN. OCT. 8, 1899                 Ther.

Stayed at the house all day.  This is our last day at McGregor’s and the grape country.  Burnes came up + stayed all night with us.

(Aged 18)
Wea.                                              MON. OCT. 8, 1900               Ther.

Went to school.  Rode down with pa and back with Gordon.  Raynor came up with us.  He will stay all night with me.  Sent a letter to Alice.  Got one from her.  In eve we went out selling tickets to the lecture course.  Sold about 8.  Pa got me a box of cigars.

(Aged 19)

Wea.                                              TUE. OCT. 8, 1901                Ther.

Finished thrashing at noon had 218 bu.  Thrash bill $5.28.  Chas Woodworth came at night to husk corn.

(Aged 20)

Wea.                                               WED.  OCT. 8, 1902             Ther.

Gail helped Ed Harrington thrash in P.M.  Glen came down and got grandma to go up + stay with Luella. 

(Aged 21)

Wea.                                              THU.  OCT. 8, 1903                 Ther.



Editor's Note:
  If I recall correctly, Raynor is the school teacher whom they gave an OddFellow pin to as a present once.

OMG but after all the lickings over smoking, Pa (Frank) goes and buys Allen a box of cigars.

Grape season ends--where will our footloose fancy-free boy go next?


Friday, October 7, 2011

Today's Treasure

Frank Cass' first trip to the theater was an amazing one.  He witnessed a wonderful piece of American theatrical history when he saw "Urlina: An African Princess" starring  The Hyers Sisters.  The sisters were well-known African American performers of the late 1800s.  

The only thing that doesn't jibe is the date.  Frank records the year as 1878 but other sources say it debuted in 1879.  I'm wondering if, like some Broadway Shows, they first opened on the road to work out the kinks?  Frank would have been 27 years old and Elmer would have been 40. Elmer's real name was actually Hiram Elmer Thayer son of Hiram Evelyn Thayer whose house was part of the Underground Railroad.

Anna Madah as Urlina found here
Louise Emma found here

Sept 28th 1878

Went over to Elmer Thayer's + then went with him to Jamestown.  Took the Jamestown steamer for Lake View to see Boat race came back to Town and went to this Theater the first one I ever attended.


Thrashing it Out

A Day in the Life: October 7th

(Aged 14)
Wea.                                           WED. OCT. 7, 1896               Ther.

Rode my wheel to school.

(Aged 16)
Wea.                                             FRI. OCT. 7, 1898               Ther.

Rode my wheel to school.  In eve took Edith Hill to the birthday party on Leon Page.  We had a nice time.  There were about 25 or 30 present.  I got home at 3.40 o’clock A.M.

(Aged 17)
Wea.                                             SAT. OCT. 7, 1899               Ther.

Worked all day drawing grapes to the depot.

(Aged 18)
Wea.                                              SUN. OCT. 7, 1900                 Ther.

Stayed at home and studied all day.  Wrote a letter to Alice.  Quit chewing tobacco.  Am going to smoke two or three cigars a day is what I intend. 

(Aged 19)
Wea.                                              MON. OCT. 7, 1901                Ther.

Thrashed over to pa’s.  And started to thrash here about 3 o’clock.  Was very tired. 

(Aged 20)
Wea.                                               TUE.  OCT. 7, 1902             Ther.

Went up to John Smedley’s in the A.M.  Rained nearly all P.M.

(Aged 21)
Wea.                                              WED.  OCT. 7, 1903                  Ther.



Editor's Note:   Everybody was permitted to stay out all night at parties it seems.  Allen's commute wasn't but 20 minutes walking (if that) from the Page farm so the party was a long one.


Thursday, October 6, 2011

A Tough Nut to Crack

A Day in the Life: October 6th


(Aged 14)
Wea.                                         TUE. OCT. 6, 1896               Ther.

Rode my wheel to school.  Geo brought the cow down today.

(Aged 16)
Wea.                                          THU. OCT. 6, 1898               Ther.

Rode to school with Ada Page.  In eve went over to Edith Hill’s to see if she would go to the party tomorrow night with me.  She will.

(Aged 17)

Wea.                                           FRI. OCT. 6, 1899               Ther.

Worked all day drawing grapes to the depot.

(Aged 18)
Wea.                                           SAT. OCT. 6, 1900                 Ther.

Slept from 7 A.M. till 12.  In P.M. husked 12 bu of corn. 

(Aged 19)

Wea.                                            SUN. OCT. 6, 1901                Ther.

Stayed at home all day.  Had turkey for dinner.  Rollie was over.  Gathered a few hickory nuts.

Mother Earth News shows how it is done.

(Aged 20)
Wea.                                             MON.  OCT. 6, 1902             Ther.

Jim cut corn in A.M. In P.M. finished filling silo run about 2 hrs.

(Aged 21)
Wea.                                              TUE.  OCT. 6, 1903                  Ther.



Editor's Note:
Edith Hill may have gone out once with Allen but she goes on to marry George Baker in 1899.  She lived until 1945 and is buried in Myrtle Cemetery.  George died two years later.

In 1901 it's the first time I think we've seen them eat something that Allen caught hunting.  I'm impressed.

And I can't resist: "Jimmy cut corn and I don't care...Jimmy cut corn and I don't care...
I'm sure you thought of the comparison too when you read 1902.


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Letters of Note--Please Come Home All is Forgiven

Allen is in Portland, NY helping ship grapes and trying out life on his own but a few hours down the road his family misses him terribly and wow but could Aunt Mary lay a guilt trip.  In contrast, Luella's note is very much from a school girl--very dramatic and gossipy but also full of love.

Letter from Aunt Mary Cass Eccles

Monday Oct. 2, 1899

Dear Allie,

I thought I would write a few lines to you as your Mama + Luella has already written well Allie we are all well and hope this will find you the same the boys all send their love to you.  Glenn says tell Allie to come home to go to hunting with him he shot 3 nice rabbits yesterday he also wants you to come and go a chestnuting with him.  Gib and I are going to Jamestown to day.  I may see you in Jamestown today hope I will you may bet I will bring you home with me if I do. 

Allie what makes you want to go so far away from your home and friends for and go right among strangers don't you know you are a great deal better off with your Father and your Mother than what you are off there what if you should get sick you would not have your Ma to take care of you and baby you in every way.  Allie, don’t you know your Pa is not very well and if he should die you would feel as if you you had done a very wrong thing in going away from home for to let him get along the best he could Allie do come home and go to School as it is the very best thing for you to do you know a good learning is th very best thing you can have.

Allie don’t you know that there is only you two boys and if you stay at home and try and do right you will get more help from your Pa that all you could lay up by hard work you know we have all got to put up with a great deal in this world so don’t lay up anything against your Pa for he has just as much love for you as any father had for his son hse was only scolding you for chewing tobacco and that was just for your own good it is certainly a dirty filthy weed it makes your breath smell bad it stains you mouth and lips besides it costs lots of money.  We have had some pretty cold weather for a few days + quite a little snow but it has all gone off now.

Well I will have to close this as Gib is waiting for me.  Please write as soon as you get this and tell all of the news and promise me you will come right home and go to School you will won't you Allie.  I will close hoping to hear from you soon.  I remain as ever your true friend and Auntie Mary to Allie.

Letter from Cousin Luella Springer Eccles

Frewsburg, NY
Sept. 29, 1899

My Dear Cousin,

I with pleasure will write a few lines to you,  I wrote a letter to you and sent it to Jamestown but you didn't that did you.  Your mother is down hear this morning and she gave me your address and I will write to you.

Grandma and mama are woring about you all the time every time we have been to town mama has looked all around for you but she did not see you.  Oh! say Allen why dont you come home and got to school.  I miss you awfully (over)

and so does Mattie Cowan.  Mattie sends her love and best wishes to you.  She wanted me to ask you if you remembered the last Saturday night you were together.  She says she remembers it very well and thinks you do.  I went down to see (?) last evening and did not get home until half past seven.  Went over to the burg and we had a jolly time I tell you.  Pearle Carriss and Jessie Herrick were out with us.  Now Allen you will answer this won’t you.  Who is your girl out there how do you like it.  How much do you get a week.  I hope you get lo of money and will come home with your

pockets full and then see what your father what you can do.  How did your canvasing well I hope.  Oh say did you know Willis Doger had gone to the army.  Lillian Venman received a letter from him yesterday.  Oh say Allen you know what I told you about being over to the burg some one else was with us.  I will tell you their initials and you can make them out and if you can’t when I see you I wll tell you they are RCM, LME, MC, JH, PC, CD these are who were out that night.

Well I shall half to close for this time hiping to here from you soon.  I remain your true friend and cousin.

Luella M. Eccles
Frewsburg, NY
(give my love to all I know)

Now Allen do come home you don’t know how bad I want to see you.  I want to see you the worst of anyone do come home.  (What made you go)

Now Allen you ans this week with out fail.  Mattie wants to know if you remember making ice cream one Sunday night.


Rolling in the Hay

A Day in the Life: October 5th

(Aged 21)
Wea.  rainy                                  MON. OCT. 5, 1896               Ther. 

Rode my wheel to school.  Pa bought a cow of Hie Scott for $20.

(Aged 16)
Wea.                                            WED. OCT. 5, 1898               Ther.

Went to school.  Rode with Ada Page.  Mrs. Groat and Mrs. Durand were here.  My finger is worse.*

(Aged 17)
Wea.                                             THU. OCT. 5, 1899               Ther.

Worked all day.  In the eve there was a dance in the packing house.  I watched them and flirted with the girls.

(Aged 18)
Wea.                                             FRI. OCT. 5, 1900                 Ther.

Went to school with Gordon.  In eve went up to Leon Page’s to a party.  There were five couples there and I didn’t have a very good time at the party.  I took Alice from town.  I got her about 6.30 and got to the party about 9.30 left about 10 o’clock.  Got home about 6 o’clock.  We had a fine time.  X X X
probably wasn't this glamourous

(Aged 19)
Wea.                                              SAT. OCT. 5, 1901                Ther.

Pearle + Alice went to the burg to a chicken dinner.  Will and I shod Leo and got some corn and a  turkey. 

(Aged 20)
Wea.                                               SUN.  OCT. 5, 1902                Ther.

Stayed at home all day. Ma came over a little while. 

(Aged 21)
Wea.                                              MON.  OCT. 5, 1903                  Ther.



Editor's Note:   Allen's handwriting has continued to decline since boil first mentioned so it is clearly on his writing hand in 1898 but the next year this day is much more exciting.  He goes to the dance and flirts with the girls in the grape packing house.  I am curious as to how Allen could ride a bike, play football and baseball but somehow not dance.  I think his was a disability of convenience.  It only becomes a liability when there's something he doesn't really want to do.

Somehow I think Hattie's visit had the opposite effect of what we'd expect.  The crazy kids just ramp up their shenanigans and are out ALL NIGHT LONG.  The only go to the party for 30 minutes before ditching and Xing for the next 8 hours.  Well, there you go.


Wedding Wednesday - Florence and Louis Lucas

Florence Griffith and Louis Lucas

This was Florence's only marriage and Louis' second.  Louis was  widowed when his first wife Grace Brown died shortly after the birth of our grandfather Stuart, in 1904. Florence Griffith and Louis were distant cousins and from what I know, she was a good step-mother to Stuart.


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Letters From Home

A Day in the Life: October 4th

(Aged 14)
Wea.                                           SUN. OCT. 4, 1896               Ther. 

Went up to Unkle Gib’s on my wheel.  They came down here.

(Aged 16)
Wea.                                            TUE. OCT. 4, 1898               Ther.

Rode my wheel to school.  My finger is pretty sore.

(Aged 17)
Wea.                                             WED. OCT. 4, 1899               Ther.

Drew grapes to Depot and monkeyed around.  In eve wrote five letters one was for home.

Bet Allen was answering these letters from Aunt Mary and Luella. 

(Aged 18)
Wea.                                              THU. OCT. 4, 1900                 Ther.

Went to school with Gordon.  P.H. Coeburg was buried today.  Alice stopped and gave me a letter as she went back to town.  W.R. and H.P. went to town tonight.  I wonder why.  In eve studied to 9 o’clock.  I didn’t go to the Jack lantern party.  Got a letter from Irma.  She is at Portland.

(Aged 19)
Wea.                                              FRI. OCT. 4, 1901                Ther.

Will Drayton and I went over and got the bull.

(Aged 20)
Wea.                                               SAT.  OCT. 4, 1902             Ther.

Began filling my silo (with) Joel Harrington’s machine.  Had 17 men.

(Aged 21)
Wea.                                              SUN.  OCT. 4, 1903                  Ther.



Editor's Note:  Can't figure out who the initials are that intrigued Allen. I'm thinking Alice's letter was the post script to Hattie's visit--letting Allen know her half of the talking to from Hattie. 

I will transcribe the letters from Mary and Luella to Allen in Portland soon.


Tombstone Tuesday

Andrew and Hattie Warn

Pearle, Hattie, Ruth at Andrew Warn's grave in 1929 at Lake View Cemetery in Jamestown.  Hattie died in 1930.

photo by Daniel and Audrey Briggs at Find a Grave

Monday, October 3, 2011

Hattie Warn Pays Allen a Visit

A Day in the Life: October 3rd

(Aged 14)
Wea.                                             SAT. OCT. 3, 1896               Ther.

I went chestnuting up to Tom Shaw’s got 7 quarts.  When I came home I brought grandma over carried her home.

(Aged 16)
Wea.                                             MON. OCT. 3, 1898               Ther.

Rode to school.  Rode down to the burg to school with Ada Page.

(Aged 17)
Wea.                                             TUE. OCT. 3, 1899               Ther.

Drew grapes to Brockton + Portland Depot.  Got my cloths (sic) from home.  Charges $.25.  In eve went up to N. McGregor’s to see May Taylor. 

Grape Shipping
(Aged 18)
Wea.                                              WED. OCT. 3, 1900                 Ther.

Went to school with Gordon.  In eve Mrs. A. Warn was down didn’t study much.  Got a letter from Alice and one from Nella Dann.

(Aged 19)
Wea.                                              THU. OCT. 3, 1901                Ther.

Alice + I went over to Unkle Alix’s.  Bought a bull of him cost $22.50.

(Aged 20)
Wea.                                               FRI.  OCT. 3, 1902             Ther.

Helped Shaw fill his silo.  E. Thayer began cutting my corn. 

(Aged 21)
Wea.                                              SAT.  OCT. 3, 1903                  Ther.



Editor's Note: Allen plans on staying away because I'm guessing he's had his warmer clothes sent on to him. Obviously, the family knows were he is but we don't know how much contact he is having with them.  It seemed to be his father he broke with but I really don't know.  May Taylor could have been a Chautauqua Girl who worked the grape season too.  I found a May in the area who was one year older than Allen.

The very next year Hattie Warn pays a visit to the Cass family disrupting Allen's studying.  Now, is she there to confront him over keeping her daughter out all night XXX or is she simply there to make wedding plans?  Hattie doesn't turn up much so I'm thinking she's ticked off.  Alice would be there too if they were making plans.

Don't have a clue who Unkle Alix is but the P.H. Coeburg who passed away yesterday in 1900 was actually Henry Colburg who was married to Alice's Aunt Martha Warn.


Sunday, October 2, 2011

Working on the Grape Belt

A Day in the Life: October 2nd

(Aged 14)
Wea.                                            FRI. OCT. 2, 1896               Ther. 

Went to school.  Town board met.  Ma + Rollie stayed at grandma Mason’s.

(Aged 16)
Wea.                                            SUN. OCT. 2, 1898               Ther.

Went to factory.  Stayed at home all day.  My finger is very bad.

(Aged 17)
Wea.                                             MON. OCT. 2, 1899               Ther.

Drew grapes to Portland Depot.


(Aged 18)
Wea.                                              TUE. OCT. 2, 1900                 Ther.

Went to school with Gordon.  In eve studied till 9.30.

P.H. Coeburg died.

(Aged 19)
Wea.                                              WED. OCT. 2, 1901                Ther.

Went to factory.  Then went up to look at John Smedley’s bull but didn’t buy him.  Bot 10 bu of potatoes of C. Whitman for $6.75.  Paid for my mowing machine $30.

(Aged 20)
Wea.                                               THU.  OCT. 2, 1902             Ther.

Gail cut corn.  I went hunting.  Didn’t get much.

(Aged 21)
Wea.                                              FRI.  OCT. 2, 1903                  Ther.



Editor's Note: Understandably, in 1896, Nora and her step-mom Mrs. Mason still need to huddle post their mutual loss of Emma.

In 1899, our lad returns to his journal.  It is definitely his handwriting this time and we find him on the grape picking/shipping circuit in the Lake Erie Grape Belt.  According to their website, this area is the largest producer of Concord Grapes in the world.  While Allen was still only about 40 miles from home, he was a world away.  He probably lived in a bunk house, worked harder than ever to prove his ability and fitness and was exposed to new, more varied personalities.  He certainly has not had the time to keep up his daily entries though we're not sure when he got it back off of "Chuck".  He must be more settled there now. 

I can't find P.H. Coeburg in the Census and wonder if his name is spelled correctly.


Sunday Smiles

How to Quickly Clear a Pool

Bear in mind, I am completely aware of the low grade of these photos.  However, they illustrate one of Bill's favorite stories to tell on me.  In 1992, Diana and Bill packed up their belongings and put their two young cats Memphis and Charleston on a plane to Bill's sister in LA.  They were leaving New York City and heading to California for good.  They planned to take a romantic cross-country drive but I could not be left out of a road trip so I pushed my way into the back of their brand new Saturn and off we went. This was the trip of the Vegas wedding, this was the trip of all sorts of great and horrid moments.

By the time we got outside of Chicago Diana was regretting my presence.  She was so angry that I had been given a box of Cap'n Crunch cereal from the friend we stayed with in Chicago.  She was not jealous, she does not feel for the Crunch as I do but she felt there was no room for it as well as me in the car.  I can't lie, I was forced to hold the big box of cereal on my lap we were so crammed into our allotted space. (Think 2" less than what you get in Economy Class).

Eventually, Diana agreed to take a turn in the back seat.  To my regret, I didn't move the box out of her way fast enough.  Diana had zero patience for her new surroundings and before I knew it my Cap'n was put out at the side of the road and Bill roared away oblivious to the situation.   I was was in shock over this injustice and Diana was self-righteously indignant.  The only thing to soothe the conflict was a few seventy-five cent drafts in a Dubuque dive that had jackalope heads hanging above the bar. 

But I digress.  In South Dakota I bought a pair of cowboy boots in a Western gear store and a fringed jacket for $1.75 in a thrift store.  I was going through a phase and I thought I was the bees knees. However, the coat had bald patches where some fringe was missing and the cowboy boots were not that comfortable.  They actually pinched my big toe so badly it became somewhat inflamed. 

My toe worsened and I stopped wearing the boots.  Since I'm not one to suffer in silence Diana and Bill were made aware of my toe trouble and given regular reports from the backseat (I never got to sit up front again on that trip).  Somewhere outside of Denver there is a hot spring and we stopped to take the waters.  It was wonderfully warm and soothing especially on my foot.  Though the pictures don't show it, there were a number of people there that day but I cleared the pool when I innocently asked Bill:

Do You think the water is good for my infection?

Bill and Diana in our newly private spa.