The Night Is Lovely

I often find goodies tucked away in boxes that aren't books. I'd like to share this old diary I found.

Here is the first page, the author has written in their name and some nice (and historic) details:

Sarah Q. Thomson
Hurricane Hall
Fayette County
June 28th 1875

Here are a few entries:

Sept. 16th - Rainy. Mrs. Frazer called a few minutes. Mal and I spent the day at Mannys

Sept. 17th - Very cool all day. Roger and I went to Lex. and got home a little after noon. Roger went huntin after we ate. Dr. Wasson came on the stage this P.M. Mr. Pettie came this P.M. and left and 1/2 past 10. We met Mr. Frank Houghton on the road; he says Jennie is no better.

Sept. 18th - Cold and rainy all day. This A.M. I cooked some watermelon preserves with lemons. Dr. Wasson is still here.

Sept. 19th - Mr. Thurman preached this A.M. He is agent for Foreign Missions. Mr.s Pettie baptized George Pierson after meeting. Dr. Wasson is still here and Mr. Pette and Mr. Thurman came from the baptism. Mr. left the dinner table and went immly. to Republican. He gave me a note...

Feb. 9th - Last bedtime 10:40. Finished and sent by stage Mr. Pettie's letter. Did not go to prayer meeting.

Feb. 10th - Rec'd 10 pages to letter mailed yesterday. Mrs. Walton and Ellen went to Geo. town at 3 1/2 P.M. Before they started Mrs. W. took me in her buggy to the road gate for the mail and very unexpectedly I rec'd above letter and Rose Catalogue from Dingee and Conard Co. Mrs. W. spent the A.M. in my room. Began reply to this P.M.'s letter

Feb. 11th - Ellen is 19 today. Pa gave her a gold necklace. Miss Mary Haley gave cuffs and collar and wheelbarrow needlebook and silver thimble. Sis and Squire took Ma with them to Rodes (?) to spend today. Very rainy. Pa and Miss Mary went to Lex., Mr and Mrs. Walton to Stanford. This P.M. M(?) Oliver Redd, Geo. Burch, S.R. Smith Jr. and Mrs. Smith and Marie called. Mrs. Frank Houghton died at noon. I finished Mr. Pettie's letter this P.M. All but Pa, Ma and Henry went to the Literary Society tonight, I had to read, was awfully embarrassed. Ben Crenshaw brought me home. The night is lovely. Got home at 11. Last bed time 12.

-Click to enlarge photos-


  1. An example of "life goes on", this young woman writes of a pleasant life just 10 years after the Civil War.

  2. The word you can't decipher in the final entry is Messrs, an archaic abbreviation of Messieurs, ie more than one Mr.

  3. That is so cool. What do you do with diaries you find? Do you sell them or do you donate them?

  4. I don't come across them that often, all the one's I've found I have saved.

  5. What is a "wheelbarrow needlebook"?

  6. Mang - I imagine something like this:

  7. This was wonderful to read. Social history at it's best. Thanks for posting.