Monday, 26 December, 1864

A dismal looking day. Bill went out ducking before breakfast. Killed none. He and Hardie went up in the buggy to Court. Hardie went from there to Uncle Butler’s for a gallon of brandy.1Isaac Butler Edwards of nearby Forest Villa is mentioned in Clarke’s Old King William Homes and Families as “having an extensive distillery for making peach and apple brandy.” Caroline’s sister Rose’s husband, “Hill” King was the brother of Mildred King, Butler Edwards’ wife. Circumstantial evidence? Yes. But it is probably as close as we will come to finding out who this Uncle Butler was. Had the misfortune to get the carboy broke and lose most of it. Returned and had a gallon more put into a borrowed jug. Reached home to supper. – – Made ginger cakes this evening and seasoned mince meat for pies. Bake, Pigeo and Nan decorated the parlor with evergreens beautifully. – – We were all right much alarmed by fire tonight. A piece of Martha’s carelessness. – – Bill did not return with Hardie. Went with Beverly home and staid all night. Invited company to dine here on Friday.

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