Saturday, 31st March, 1866

The weather moderate. Hardie was the first to rise this morning after I did (I am always the first one up and generally call Bill). Made Hardie take some hot coffee before he started to the W. O. with his shad to sell 42, making the whole number caught 144. – – Liv went out to do some repairs to the buggy. Came on to rain and was showery the rest of the day till late in the evening. Liv, Nan and myself went down and took a snack and shortly after Bill came, and soon after that Zac returned from Hillyard’s where he had been for oars for the boat, but he had not made them. Bill went out with Hardie this evening. Only caught 8 shad, making 152 in all. Addison ground up coffee, beat pepper, &c, &c. He improves right much, is a right useful boy. Squared up with hirelings this evening. Paid them up to the first of March. – – I brought some tobacco from Liv, just to treat John occasionally. Gave Corbin $5 this morning. Said he was going to Richmond. We have advanced to him more than he is due. – – Dellah went to visit her mother today.

Friday, 30th March, 1866

Another good day, but steadily cold. Liv arrived soon after breakfast. Came to Ju’s last evening in the buggy with George Tebbs. Brought me some seed of different kinds. I sowed some radish seed this evening, some on the asparagus beds, hot bed and plant bed. Hope they will succeed in one or the other place. – – Patsy’s spinning, it’s too cold to be out. – – Hardie finished hanging the seine and he and Zac went out. Took Nan in the boat with them and she staid till after twilight enjoying the moonlight and novelty of catching shad exceedingly. They then put out the new seine and are very much pleased with it. – – After supper, she, Liv and Bill went in the parlor and staid some time. They sang with her. Liv is of a happy, cheerful temperament, nothing puts him down. – – He brought Zac a letter from Bake and gave me one he received from Pigeo to read. – – I finished turning my black dress this evening. I believe it has been a week since I commenced it. – – Ju came to see Randolph this morning. Informed us that the Col. had come, so Zac went up to school, but returned to dinner, has lost a fortnight. – – Hardie and Zac came in and took some hot coffee, &c for supper, having caught 27 shad. Returned again and made up 36 in all, and came in about 4 o’clk. Hardie was the first one to ride already to take his shad to sell. He returned about nine, carried 40 shad, whole number caught 144. Got the new seine right badly torn.

Thursday, 29th March, 1866

Quite a pretty day, bit cold. – – Patsy washed the parlor and dining room before dinner and had them dry rubbed by Addison, and Nan and I attended to the rest, and I then locked the door to avoid having so many rooms to clean. – – Randolph sent for me to see him, seems to be suffering very much. I came to the house and sent him some pickle and stewed peaches. He sent back for ginger. – – The boys caught ten shad last night, making 108 in all. – – It is impossible that I can do any work to speak of, I have so much jobbing to do. Hardie commenced hanging his new seine. – – Nan marks it off for him. – – Jim returned about nine o’clk. with the boat and no oars.

Wednesday, 28th March, 1866

The weather still settled cold. – – Mr. Crouch and North came to breakfast. Sold them an ewe and her lamb for $8.pd.1 – – Sent Addison to ask Mag for some yeast, sent her some yard long snaps.- – And when he returned, had to go back immediately for Ju to see Randolph, who is much worse after getting better of measles. Hardie walked to Mr. Cobb’s for the seine. I should have sent the balance of the money, but didn’t know the amount till I asked Bill, $4.75 due on the seine now, paid $5. – – William Edwards informed Bill that Mr. Hillyard would be unable to send the boat down according to contract, so Bill started Jim off in the oxcart immediately for it. – – I’ve been bothered half the day looking for a memorandum book and at last remembered that Liv carried it away with him. Said he wanted it. – – I arose quite early this morning and cut out two pair coarse sheets and half doz. napkins. Hope to make them in process of fine, for really I am heavily taxed right now and I do not neglect Nan with her studies, knowing the importance of it, and she is very studious.

  1. As with his companion, I have been unable to locate a likely Mr. North. North is not a common surname in the region.  (back)

Tuesday, 27th March, 1866

A genuine winter spell for the last several days. Hardie and Zac went floating this evening. Came in to supper with 15 shad. Returned again and caught nine more, making 98 in all. It is so cold the seine freezes when they take it up out of the water. Patsy ironed today. I went out and smoothed the skirt of my dress. – – Nan put her feet in hot water and used mutton suet. She has a dreadful cold. – – Mr. Crouch and another gentleman came to look at the sheep.1

  1. No likely Mr. Crouch appears in KW tax or census records. (Crouch is a family name more associated with King & Queen County.) He will appear here for about another month conducting business with the Littlepages. If any of our readers have a suggestion as to the identity of Mr. Crouch, please advise.  (back)

Monday, 26th March, 1866

Bitter cold weather, breezing all day, i.e., the water buckets and around the doors. I can’t see how anything survives in the garden. My peas do not seem to be very much injured and my plants I had blankets spread over the glasses are not materially hurt. Some of the tomato plants are killed. The wind has blown high all day, and it has certainly been an unpleasant one to me. The boys all went to the C. H., it being court day. The Negroes had a meeting there also, two or three times the no. of white men. All drew up in a line and elected their officers, made speeches, &c. How appalling to the White man. Some of them thought it worse than a Yankee raid. – – The boys returned early in the evening, having had enough of the day. How humiliating it must be to them. I feel it so sensibly myself. Bill paid me $4 he received for two pigs. – – Patsy washed today, after doing over my soap. It needed more salt. – – Bill hunted up my turkeys, and Hardie assisted him in getting them in the house. They are so wild. Have saved no eggs yet to speak of, though they have been laying some time. Jim sold 8 shad for Hardie $.25.

Sunday, 25th March, 1866

Quite cold and windy, but I felt as if I ought to go to Church. Corbin drove, Hardie rode Fannie, Bill and Zac staid at home. – – Hardie returned to dinner. Nan and I took dinner at Ju’s and spent the afternoon with Mrs. Lewis. Joe Baytop is quite sick.1 Ju hitched Chester in with George and left Shakespeare till we returned. Mag, himself and Stuart went in the carriage with Nan and myself. Found all in fine spirits there. Roland had just arrived with the two “Germans” from Richmond. They have no servants there at all and seem to get on very well indeed as far as I could judge, and they all say they are much happier without them. – – For myself, I must acknowledge that while we are happier in some respects, they contribute a great deal to our happiness in others. – – I have always had a partiality for the race and have strong attachments for many of them. – – I understand from Dandridge through some of the other servants, that Martha is altogether opposed to returning as a servant, since she has known what it is to be free and untrammeled.

  1. Josephine (Joe) Spotswood [Lewis] Baytop’s marriage was reported back on 22 December, 1864. She will recover from her illness and die in 1927 at the age of 90.  (back)

Saturday, 24th March, 1866

A rainy afternoon and night. We have a pretty day. – – Hardie sent 39 shad by Humphrey to the W.O. to John Cobb to deliver to another man. He engaged them yesterday. – – I went in the garden and planted a square of corn, two rows of broom corn, made Addison drop it. He is a right good boy as far as he is capable, when he doesn’t forget everything, and gives me a great deal less trouble than Martha. She is all the time in sulks. – – Bill rode to the W. O. Collected $7.25 for shad, returned to supper. Hardie caught 8 shad, Bill with him. Zac gave out meal to servants. Whole number of shad caught 74.

Friday, 23rd March, 1866

A very good growing day. Jim brought the clover seed from the C. H. Bill commenced sowing oats in the lot today. Randolph still sick. – – Hardie took a nap after breakfast, slept but little last night. – – Had my soap made today. Before dinner, Zac went to see Mr. Hilyard about the boat, as he has not heard from the Col. yet, whether he has returned or not. Has walked up there several days this week for nothing. – – Martha has not returned. Hope she is enjoying herself. – – Zac returned in company with Jake White, who wishes to purchase our sheep, or rather we will have to sell them on account of pasturage. – – Zac rode to the Col’s. to enquire whether he had returned. Saw Mary and his two sons, but the Col. had not returned. A little mysterious, but it’s their business, not ours, farther than the school is concerned. – – I went in the garden this evening and assisted Patsy in opening some hills for corn, have not planted any yet. Came on to rain before we commenced to plant. – – Hardie and Zac went out floating and caught eleven shad, making 66 in all. – – Patsy and Addison carried out the chaff the eating potatoes were kept in. Sold her ½ bushel potatoes. – – Bill finished sowing the oats and clover on the 15, 4 bushels oats and about 1½ gallons clover seed. I do hope we may have a nice clover lot there. – – Nan made herself a riding cap after she came out of school, silk velvet. – – The boys came in from floating at nine. It rained too hard for them to remain longer. Had some coffee kept hot for them. – – Have only gotten two turkey eggs yet. – – Hardie rode George to the W. O. this evening.1

  1. W. O., as will become apparent, is the White Oak Landing on the Mattiponi, about 2 miles down river from Woodbury. Today the site is at the end of county road 637. In 1866 it apparently had become a lively commercial location.  (back)

Thursday, 22nd March, 1866

A lovely day. Commenced breaking up the lot by Corbin for oats and clover. Randolph is sick. Jim and Washington are hauling manure. Mr. Powell sent 4 or 5 bushel oats by them. – – Jim got 3 pecks potato seed. Patsy assisted me about making her dress today, and swept the yard this evening. – – George Washington’s housewarming comes off today.1 I dissuaded Hardie from going. He and Zac went floating tonight and caught 19 shad (no school again today). We have only caught 55 shad yet.

  1. This is Caroline’s only mention of George Washington. Unfortunately for us, the KW Personal Property Tax Rolls for 1866 mentions two George Washingtons. The significant difference between the two is that one is credited with owning 2 horses and 50$ of “household and kitchen furniture” while the other is listed has owning no property. They may have been father and son. Hardie was likely planning to attend the housewarming of the former. But only one George, property-less, is listed for the next two years. Then in 1869 four George Washingtons appear, one owning one horse and living in West Point. The following year, also the Census year, the rolls are back to two, neither with property, but one still in West Point. The Census only records the West Point George Washington, 26 living with Dolphey, 45, perhaps his mother. Anyone with information that would help us sort out these Washingtons is invited to contact Caroline’s Journal.  (back)

Wednesday, 21st March, 1866

A very good day, but a little windy. I walked up to the quarters. Washington hauling manure with Jim today, as one of the mules sick and he can’t plough. Had her given alum and salt peter as a drench, then blanketed. Think she is affected with gaules.1 – – Bill rode Fannie round to Spring Field and other places today.2 Returned to supper. Had the first baked shad for dinner. Zac went to school, but the Col. was not there, so there is no school this week so far. I suppose urgent business keeps him in Richmond. – – Nan studies all her lessons, and I hear them all, and job the rest of the time doing Martha’s business, &c. Rather out of our line or routine, but we do it cheerfully, a little piqued though at times at the idea of her spending quite so long a time on a trip of pleasure, regardless of consequences, but maybe it’s all right. “Every dog will have his day,” as the saying is. – – The boys went in the kitchen tonight and made a preparation of ointment. John thought it would kill or cure the mule. – – I think she is rather better. I gave her some meal about twilight, she ate it ravenously. – – Hardie and Zac tried to catch a shad, but only caught a couple of ailwives. Took off the facing of my black calico dress to turn, and Nan an under skirt.

  1. Galls.  (back)
  2. Caroline previously has rendered Springfield as one word. See 29 May, 1865 for details. Ten days ago Bill visited Springfield “to see George.”  (back)

Tuesday, 20th March, 1866

An excellent day for vegetation, mild, with a little rain. Uncovered my hot bed. – – Dellah came to me for potato seed. Let her have ½ bushel @ $2. pr. bushel. Good many persons have applied for them. They are very scarce. Patsy’s spinning today. Zac remains at home, not having heard from the Col. No shad about. – – I sowed some turnip seed (early Norfolk Globe) by way of experiment for Spring. A mule sick this evening. Bill gave her a drink of turpentine and molasses. – – Jim’s hauling manure on the lot where we intend putting oats and clover, before it will succeed well. – – Martha has not returned yet. Ploughed part of the day.

Monday, 19th March, 1866

Some change in the weather today. More moderate. Ju had his tomato plants killed Saturday night. O! it was so cold. I had my hot bed blanketed and then some of the plants were killed. Zac returned from school to dinner, no teacher today. The Col. has gone to look for Frank, who reports say has made a break on him and left. – – Bill rode to the C. H. this morning and carried five shad. Mr. Cobb carried four to Richmond, he gave one to Ju. It’s so cold the shad are all gone, only caught one tonight, making 36 in all caught. Bill sent $8 by Mr. Cobb for clover seed. Ju sent me the change for the $5 Saturday, or rather Friday. Jim sent for Dr. Ju to see his wife, who he thinks has the measles. He came after had dined.- – We heard of the death of Aunt Patsy Quarles, who died yesterday.1 I lament her death very much. Cousin Betsy and herself were only a short distance apart in their journey. Only about two weeks difference. Their earthly career is closed. May they have made the preparation for the solemn event is my prayer. – – I walked to see Clarissa about 12. Found Jim and her mother with her. He is very attentive to her, wishes to have the day on that account. I put a linen bosom in a shirt for Zac and starched it before retiring. Took a nap in the evening and slept till supper was ready. – – One of the mules is sick tonight and Bill is sitting up late on that acct. Did not retire till she got better. Planted cymling seed this evening. – – Patsy’s raking walks in the garden. Martha has not returned yet. Should have been there yesterday evening. I hope she is enjoying her freedom.- – Nannie pursues her studies. Is fond of them and I will devote the proper time to them, though we have a great deal to do that has not been in our line of business. Nevertheless, as loyal subjects we will not complain, for I think I see the hand of the Lord in it all and I would not “Fight against God.”

  1. This Aunt Patsy Quarles is likely Martha (Patsy) Quarles, born in Louisa County in 1788, a daughter of William Quarles (1726-1796). William’s Quarles family had been in the Virginia Colony since the early seventeenth century, marrying into the West family, soon taking up land in the Pamunkey Neck area. Patsy owned a large farm in Spotsylvania County for many years before moving in the 1850s to Richmond to live with the A. R. Holladay family.  (back)

Sunday, 18th March, 1866

A cold, disagreeable, windy day. We all got ready as soon as we could and Bill remained at home and the rest of us attended Zion. Hardie on Fannie and Zac in the carriage with Nan and myself, and Randolph to drive. There were not many at Church. Cousin Lem was not as interesting as usual. Spoke from a portion of the 7th chp. of Matthew, subject “The golden rule.” We all returned to dinner. Hardie ahead of us, found one of Larkin’s cows grazing on our best wheat. Zac took Randolph’s place and sent him to drive her out. Hardie had just driven her out before we got there and she had returned again, and I suppose did the same again after we left. There was nothing to prevent. I don’t know why Bill suffers himself to be imposed upon by those of his neighbors who are so very exacting with him and enforce the law under similar circumstances.

Saturday, 17th March, 1866

A very great change in the weather since yesterday. Freezing nearly, all day bitter cold and windy. Notwithstanding, we made the potato bed and planted about three bushels. Found the potatoes had kept very badly. A great many had to be thrown away. – – Bill put them in the bed. Had Addison to assist him about them. – – Hardie drove Fannie to the C. H. and carried 26 shad and sold to Mr. Walcot @ $.25 a piece.1 O, it is so cold. Everything freezing. Zac would cover up most of my peas and spread blankets over the hot bed. We had loaf bread and a pot of coffee made, and took supper in the chamber. I ironed those little things starched yesterday. – – I’ve not had a letter from the absent children for some time. I miss them so much, particularly Bake, who has been a companion for me longer than any of the rest. It seems that the anniversary of every day brings her more freshly to my mind, her cheerful conversation and words of comfort so often drove away sadness, though at times she is given to it herself, or rather the blues as she calls it, and we could always sympathize with each other. – – Nan is a dear little heart and all the company a little child could be, always cheerful. Nothing puts her down, not event he death of her pet she has nurtured all the winter. She is lonely sometimes. Misses the nice rides she used to take on Shakespeare last year to school. He has to work so hard now. He needs all the rest he can get when he is not on the plough. – – No shad caught today.

  1. There was an Andrew Jackson Walcot, wheelwright, reported in the 1860 US census living in King and Queen County. He would have been about 35 in 1866. One undocumented source on ancestry.com gives his wife as Henrietta Slaughter. Since the Slaughter family were merchants at the C.H., it is possible this is our Mr. Walcot. His son, Andrew Jr., born this year, would eventually live in West Point. If any of our readers have any information about who this Mr. Walcot might be, please let us know.  (back)

Friday, 16th March, 1866

Another fine day. Had a delightful shower about ten. Bill had just started to ride to the White Oak and was in the whole of it. After a fine rain, it cleared up and we had a beautiful evening. I went in the garden and sowed my tomato seed Mag gave me. Hardie took Addison and put the seine out and only caught one ailwife. – – Addison fills Martha’s place very well. He is so much better disposed than she is. – – Patsy ironed in the kitchen before she got dinner. – – I repaired several shirts and starched them this evening. Had corn stalks brought by Addison and Patsy for my potato bed. – – My peas are up beautifully, the entire square. – – Hardie and Zac went out floating about dusk. Caught ten shad and came in and took supper. Had some strong coffee and fresh fish for them. – – They went out again and only caught two more, making 30 in all. – – Sent Ju the money I borrowed yesterday $3.20, but I had to send a $5 note. Couldn’t make the change and so he kept the note. Bill returned to late dinner.

Thursday, 15th March, 1866

The loveliest day we have had this Spring, and from loss of sleep last night I am very much indisposed. Notwithstanding, through a little persuasion from Hardie, instead of lying down and taking a nap I had a cup of strong coffee and with him to drive Fannie to the buggy I spent the day at Ju’s, and leave Nannie alone to pursue her studies and take care of the house. Bill will return to dinner from the oat field he is having the clover seed dragged in today also. I took a long nap after dinner at Ju’s, and while asleep, Mrs. Edwards called to see me and Mag came up and awoke me. Miss Atilla George came also. I paid her three dollars and twenty cents for the piece of coarse cloth she wove. Will return the message to Ju in the morning. – – Spent the day very pleasantly, though much indisposed. We returned earlier than we should have done on account of Hardie’s making a drift on the right tide and caught 18 shad, the first we have had. Took supper after catching nine, and he and Zac returned and caught nine more and came in about 8 much gratified with their night’s work, or rather sport for them. – – As regards the buggy ride to and from the C. H., no one need to have envied me that. Little Fannie didn’t only go along the road, but all about it and so to the old buggy the bottom dropped several times. Tis true I didn’t go through, but my things did. Hardie laughed, but I didn’t. It was too critical, for I found she would go along anyway whether she had all the buggy or not. Any how, we reached home safely. – – Patsy weeded out some of the walks in the yard today, but from the amount of work done, did not hurt herself I imagine, but she soon commenced complaining and said she hadn’t seen anything like freedom yet, had to work just as she always did. I told her that after Martha returned from her pleasure excursion, she must take her time and all would be better contented and be better to realize that though they were all free, we all had to work in order to live. – – Found Nan quite cheerful when we returned. She went out on the bank with Bill to enjoy the scenery, so many boats with lights floating.

Wednesday, 14th March, 1866

A most beautiful day, fit for all kinds of work. – – Bill finished sowing the clover seed he left on Friday, and commenced sowing oats. He thinks he sowed from 15 to 18 acres in clover. – – Patsy washed today. Martha’s jobbing and chopping a little in the garden. – – Nan got through her lessons quite early, and is reading the life of “Bainuin” in her spare time.1 Hardie spends most of his time reading, i.e., is very particular in his instructions to Nan in the French language. She took her second lesson in her drawing book today. – – Dandridge came in about nine tonight to let me know he had promised to take •Martha visiting the rest of the week. I told him I was very busy and couldn’t share her sooner than Saturday, but he argued it and said she was free and had never enjoyed her freedom in taking pleasure yet and he wanted her to do so, and I had to yield. Notwithstanding, she has two days in the week to go or stay as she pleases. Nothing that I could say could dissuade him from his purposes. Bill and Hardie returned from Ju’s about 12 and were very much exasperated when they heard of the course Dandridge has pursued, but I advised them to go to bed and not act precipitable. It certainly is an unpleasant certain state of affairs and it seems that we have no redress. I make every allowance for them and know that it is perfectly natural. Who does not desire liberty, no one except those who do not know how to appreciate it. I cannot blame them.

  1. While the transcriber wrote “Bainuin,” I am not convinced. Please click on the word and offer some better suggestions.  (back)

Tuesday, 13th March, 1866

Very warm and dry, disagreeably so. Ju walked down and brought me a note from Mag requesting the loan of some little things as they expect to have company tomorrow evening and a longer table than usual. Sent eight plates, a coffee pot, 2 lbs. butter, a salt shad, table cloth, &c. – – Hardie put the new seine out again and tried to catch a shad for them, but has never caught one yet. – – He is right wasted in looks, but missed his chill last night. – – The servants are giving us some trouble again. Martha particularly, because I objected to her going on a visit for several days. – – Bill rode away this evening to see the men who engaged to take a mutton to Rich., been disappointed in making his arrangements and can’t take it. Luck seems to be turned against us lately, but it would be wrong to murmur. – – We were all sitting up when he returned about ten, and he went down and got something to eat.

Monday, 12th March, 1866

The weather moderated somewhat during the night – but still windy. Tom started to Richmond this morning. Sent a letter to Mary by him and gave him $2. – – I told Martha I wanted her to sleep in the chamber a while on acct. of making “fire” while I am suffering with my arm, and she certainly put on a great deal of assurance for it. – – Nan got through her lessons early today. – – Hardee’s feeling better this morning. Took about 15 grains quinine this evening and retired under the influence of it. – – Dellah finished her cloth today, 30 yds., for which I am to pay her for weaving at the usual rates.

Sunday, 11th March, 1866

Very cold and windy. Only Zac could venture out to Church. He returned to dinner. I am suffering very much with neuralgia in my shoulder. Nan’s sore throat has relapsed again, and Hardie has a fever all day. Had a chill in the night. – – Had my shoulder bathed in Irish potato water, very hot, before retiring and found some relief from it. We all spent the day pretty much within doors. The wind is too high to go out.

Saturday, 10th March, 1866

Still as cold as ever. Hardie finished the seine about 12, and Zac went out with him to try and catch a shad. – – But didn’t succeed, only two ailwives. Cut out a collar and pair of cuffs for Nan. She is making them today. I am hanking some cotton Patsy’s been spinning for counterpanes, but it’s entirely too coarse. – – Bill rode round to Springfield to see George. – – Sent Stuart some cakes by him. Washington sick today. Bill took dinner at Ju’s. Enjoyed 5 bushels Irish potatoes @ $.80 pr. bushel. Returned to supper. Had bad luck with sheep this evening. Three got mired in quick sand, including Nan’s sick sheep she has had so much trouble to get her well all the winter. She had just gotten strong enough to follow the other sheep. We have lost 9 sheep, including fine lambs this winter, though Bill seems to have paid them every attention. – – Sowed plant bed in late cabbage and lettuce this evening.

Friday, 9th March, 1866

The weather still bitter cold. Notwithstanding, Bill commenced sowing clover seed and put in about 5 pecks. Randall is sick too, today and half the day yesterday. – – George came on horseback to bind Washington out to support his mother. Thinks he is under age, but he is mistaken. – – The weather was quite moderate at noon, and I sent for Patsy to put up beds for beets, parsnips and salsafy.1 Zac assisted Martha and I in sowing. Came up a tremendous blow just before we finished, i.e., we didn’t quite get through. – – He brought me some beet seed Fes sent me. Rose was not at home. – – Nan resumed her studies today. Has lost about 7 or 8 days. Completed her 8th drawing lesson. She progresses very well in all of them. – – Starched some things this evening. – – Hardie undertook to hang Bill’s seine. Makes himself useful at any thing.

  1. Caroline spells this word as it is probably pronounced.  (back)

Thursday, 8th March, 1866

Still cold. Hardie’s birthday, and I made him some cakes, two kinds, and all enjoyed them. He received a letter from Danville by Zac, who came by the C. H. and brought it. Mag sent for me to spend the day tomorrow, but the weather is too cold for me to turn out in the buggy. She had been to spend the day at the Col’s. Went with the girls in Mrs. Hill’s carriage, and the day before went in Co. with Mrs. Slaughter and Miss Mary to spend the day at Hardin’s.1 (Wonders will never cease.) Sent the Col. $12.50 in advance for this session this morning and a note with his acct. to reconsider and make some deduction for last half session.

  1. Co. would be Caroline’s abbreviation for Company.  (back)

Wednesday, 7th March, 1866

The weather regularly cold, winter in earnest. Got the spring fever. Seems to be coming on with us all. We do not rise as early as we dld. I am always the first one to wake. Have been making my own fire for the last week. To gratify Dandridge, I permitted Martha to sleep at the quarters with the family. He said he wanted all to be together and on their own hook, where they could lie down Master and Mistress, and as far as possible their wishes are accomplished. Martha generally brings in a nice parcel of wood and something to kindle the fire, and I have no trouble to make it, unless a piece of wood is rather heavy for me. – – Zac brought me a letter from the Col. expressing his entire satisfaction of his deportment and application to his studies during the time has been at school. – – There was a perfect understanding between the Col. and myself, as regards his attendance there and his charges were not altogether satisfactory to me, and I shall write him to that effect in the morning. He writes me that he has so modified his time as to require one half of the present session commencing 5th of Mar. in advance. – – I am repairing pants for the boys the last several days. Have my hands pretty full at all times. Have not many spare moments. Nan’s still suffering with sore throat.

Tuesday, 6th March, 1866

Cold, but clear. Hardie arrived from Ju’s at nine or ten. Reached there too late last night to come home. – – Fixed up a nice snack of wild turkey, beef and rabbit for Zac to invite the Col. and Frank to join him in, as he took lunch with them yesterday. He and I sent letters to Bake today. – – Hardie went with me in the garden and assisted me in laying off the walks. Commenced about them this morning, after watering and closing up my hot bed. The seeds are not up through. Smart freeze last night, too hard to plough stiff land. Bill rode to see Mr. Terry about his boat. – – Dick Pemberton came to rent a piece of land for a fisherman to build a shanty on.1 Agreed to let him have it for $15. Wants it two months.

  1. This would be farmer Richard C. Pemberton, about 36 in 1866. He lived nearby with wife Sarah.  (back)

Monday, 5th March, 1866

Really cold, some ice this morning. Had four more rows planted in Irish potatoes and the rest of my onions planted. – – Ann Harris came to buy sweet and Irish potatoes to plant. Promised her a bushel of sweet and let her have a few Irish, for which she is to bring me a shad when she comes for the sweet potatoes.1 Hardie walked to Ju’s and went in the buggy with him to Cousin Betsy’s funeral, preached by Mr. Turpin at 4 o’clk. this evening. Spent the night at Ju’s. – – Nan’s throat is improving a little, but not enough for her to attend to her studies yet. She has lost a week and suffered a great deal most of the time. – – Bill rode away to see about his seine today, and his horse got away and went to Claiborne Hill’s, so he didn’t return till after eleven p.m. with his seine. Zac brought three letters, one from Bake to me, one from George to Hardie and one from Pigeo to himself. Zac and I wrote Bake today and sent the letters from school. Corbin brought me a basket of nice crepes this morning. – – The servants all seem very well contented and happy, but they are so uncertain and flighty in their notion.

  1. Ann Harris, probably in her early 40s, is likely the widow of Sterling Harris mentioned in the footnote on 11 December, 1865.  (back)

Sunday, 4th March, 1866

A beautiful day, and I would like so much to have gone to the Piping Tree to take the last look on the features of one I loved very dearly on account of the sincere love and attachment she has ever manifested for every member of the family. I hadn’t known how much I loved her till she is no more. Tears have been my balm of consolation today. I tried my best to get a way to go. Sent to get Ju’s mules, and I am certain if he had known how much I wanted to see the dear old lady, he would have loaned them. Notwithstanding, they had been ploughing. Our carriage horses were too feeble for the roads. No one attended Zion today. Hardie went alone to the Piping Tree on Fannie. Returned to supper and gave the particulars of her death. – – Let Martha go with the rest of the servants in the big boat to spend the day in King and Queen and attend Bruington Church. Addison took her place. I walked up to the quarters today. Dellah cooked dinner, had a wild turkey. – – Zac and Bill took a walk and got some cresses.1

  1. Creasy Greens  (back)