Apr. 29 Monday

Very cloudy this morning, has appearance of rain being cloudy. Beatrice (Bird or Bee as they usually call her) leaves (to begin her school) to day & we leave this PM for Uncle Buel’s.

Published in: on January 30, 2007 at 8:38 am  Leave a Comment  

Apr. 28th Sunday

C & I attended church, the Congregational at Nashua, with Cousin Mary & after dinner went a long ride about 15 miles down to Wapsa where more of their land lies & around where Beatrice expects to teach school. She came home from Waverly before we returned from the long ride. It’s a fine country we went through & enjoyed it very much. Mr. Weller & Chauncey, Mary E. & myself had a livery rig.

Published in: on January 29, 2007 at 12:47 pm  Comments (1)  

Apr. 27th Saturday

Another beautiful morning. This afternoon Mr. Weller & C___ took a ride. Rec’d a letter from Uncle Levi (as I wrote him to meet me here if possible) saying he could not come but would like to have us visit there on our return. 3 young ladies were here this evening to practice for an entertainment they are to have next Wednesday night & I enjoyed it so much & laughed so hard fairly ached.

Published in: on January 26, 2007 at 4:36 pm  Leave a Comment  

Seminary and Some Questions

My first thought when reading that Adaline attended Phipps Female Seminary was along the lines of a Bible college. A female Bible college in the 1800’s? What would a woman do with her education? It didn’t seem to fit in with my ideas of 19th century living. So I wasn’t very surprised when I found out that it could more appropriately be described as an academy or secondary education. A quote from an article entitled “Female Students and Denominational Affiliation: Sources of Success and Variation among Nineteenth-Century Academies” says that:

“From the late eighteenth to the late nineteenth centuries, academies were the dominant form of schooling beyond the primary level in the United States. Until the 1880s the number of academies and academy students outnumbered high schools and high school students. At mid-century the proportion of 10 to 19-year olds that attended academies was approximately 13-21 percent, a figure that compares favorably with ranges of high school attendance as late as 1890.” American Journal of Education, vol 107, No. 2, pp 75-115.

Phipps Female Seminary was located in Albion, NY about 20 miles away from where Adaline grew up near Shelby and Medina. This area is northeast of Buffalo, right below Lake Ontario. The Seminary was started by Miss Caroline Phipps (later Mrs. Achilles) in the early 1830’s accepting both males and females, but Miss Phipps later chose to limit the teaching to young ladies.

Adaline attended secondary school with less than half of the population of young people her age. This raises so many questions for me. What members of society were able to go to school? What kind of a role did money play? Was it difficult or easy for Adaline to attend? What were her goals in attending school? What value systems were in place with regards to education? I don’t know about you, but I have always been told the benefits of a good education. Where did this value originate? Is it possible that family values over 100 years ago have trickled down to today? And that leads to the question: What values do I currently express that one might find evidence of 100 years in the future?

Published in: on January 25, 2007 at 4:04 pm  Comments (1)  

Apr. 26th Friday

A lovely morning. Just finished a letter to the boys & now must prepare for a ride & now after dinner will go for another ride. After being gone about three hours we reached here in time for dinner & had such a nice ride. Mary E___, C___, & I went way the other side of Nashua & called at the home of a Mrs. Waterbury who years ago attended Phipps Female Seminary at Albion, NY where I did. They have a very pleasant pretty place and we enjoyed our ride so much. Is a very fine country around here and we are having such a nice time. It’s a very pleasant day & the roads are fine but the small grain needs rain. We returned in time for dinner and after went to Bradford, a very pretty little place where Uncle Levi Hubbell kept store years ago & what at that time was supposed to be destined for a town of much size & merrit but the railroad coming near by ( ? ) was taken to railroad at Nashua. The parents of Mrs. E B Taylor of David City, Mr. & Mrs. Hiram Thayer reside there & we called there. Had a very pleasant call then returning Mary Eliza & I took Beatrice to depot as she goes to Waverly to see dentist has been troubled with a swollen face ever since we’ve been here & now better, so went to have her teeth attended to as she begins her first school teaching next Monday if able. Some cooler to night.

Published in: on January 22, 2007 at 4:36 pm  Leave a Comment  

Figuring Out Family

I am really working at trying to figure out how all of Adaline’s family fits together. But so far I have not been able to figure out where Cousins May E. and Mamie belong! If anyone knows who they are, please share your information. I do, however, know that Uncle Buel is one of her father’s brothers. He was born in Sherman, Connecticut on July 31, 1811 and married Mary H. Adams on Sept. 3, 1857. Mary was born August 15, 1818 in Dover, NH. Apparently Buel Pickett was also a captain of the militia.

As far as their location in their journey, Adaline refers to the place as Nashua. Today, Oregon-Nashua is a township in Ogle County, IL.

Published in: on January 21, 2007 at 9:24 pm  Leave a Comment  

Apr. 25th Thursday

Very warm & pleasant. Helped Cousin May & Mamie pick potatoes for planting as they seem to be more backward about making garden etc. than in Nebr. as are just making them here & we had made some time ago & planted gardens at home. It is beautiful here but need rain badly for oats etc. Chauncey, Cousin May & I went to town to mail a card to Aunt Mary Pickett that we would be there if nothing happened Tuesday morning & we drove around to the saw mill to see Mr. Weller as is at work there getting oak logs sawed into lumber & after a very pleasant ride returned about dinner time. We like the country here very much, is so (?) than through that part of Iowa we passed Tuesday. This afternoon Mr. Burch & Mrs. Weller went to take Mr. Weller back to the saw mill to work this afternoon while I improve the time writing a letter to the boys. They have a very pleasant home; keep a hired girl & 4 or 5 men. Cousin May rec’d a letter today from a neighbor of Uncle Buel’s saying Aunt Mary was very sick to I feel undecided about calling there.

Published in: on January 16, 2007 at 8:20 pm  Comments (1)  

April 24th Wednesday

Morning finds us at East Waterloo. Took train at Afton Junction at 5 o’clock & arrived at Waterloo at about midnight. Took bus to Ogden House where we spent remainder of the night and at 10 1/2 o’clock took train for Nashua on Ill Central road. Found cousin Mamie at depot for us and now are seated in this pleasant home. The country surrounding Waterloo is much more pleasant & inviting to pass over than yesterday’s view & it is very pleasant where they live. C___ was not feeling very well last night but is better this morning & it is such a pleasant day. Age has changed the looks of Cousin May E___ for been about 28 yrs since we met.

Published in: on January 15, 2007 at 10:20 pm  Comments (1)  

Afton Junction

Adaline gave a very accurate description of Afton Junction. This is great. Click picture for larger image.

Afton Junction

Courtesy of the Special Collections Department, University of Iowa Libraries


The University of Iowa has pictures of many other railroads in Iowa as well.


Published in: on January 13, 2007 at 1:54 pm  Leave a Comment  

In the Ladies Room

One thing that I really enjoy about reading this journal is the glimpses it gives us into the personalities of Adaline and her family members. It is one thing to read through a list of names and dates, seeing who your ancestors were. It is quite another to read about a husband playing a joke on his wife! That was funny. Chauncey knew she couldn’t see without her glasses so he introduced a man to her as someone else! I was glad to see that she had a sense of humor about it, too.

And the fact that he did this in the Ladies Room? Although indoor plumbing was around in some places (see The History of Plumbing if you are really interested), this was not that kind of a Ladies Room. It seems that some places, including most train stations, had separate waiting areas for women so they did not have to sit with the swearing and tobacco chewing men. Although it isn’t the depot in Lincoln, I did find an example of a typical waiting room from a depot in Springfield, Illinois.

waiting room

AnoChauncey Burchther view of Chauncey Burch is described in the on-line book, Bellwood, Nebraska- The First 100 Years. In it, one man remembered “Chauncey Burch, dressed in a cut-away coat, a checkered vest and striped pants, chasing his chickens, with his flowing beard streaming back over his shoulders.” There are many other families in the above mentioned book in addition to the Burches. It is a great place to look for family information, if they ever lived in that area.

Published in: on January 12, 2007 at 12:37 pm  Comments (1)