[Elinor’s next attempt to work outside the home for Miss Baumgart is short- lived. The girl they actually hired was delayed getting there so Elinor stood in for this 17 year old polish girl called Minnie, who apparently had very poor personal hygiene, a poverty of speech and knew very little about running a house. So Elinor tries to train the girl and at times to do the harder jobs (while making fun of her and sarcastically describing the old maid’s naivete about Minnie.) Her descriptions of work at this home are more detailed including gas lights that must be lit, a furnace that must be fixed for the night, delivering breakfast & bathing rags & hot water bottle to the old maid’s bedroom, pulling down shades, locking windows, covering a canary, locking the basement, & sleeping in a very uncomfortable 3/4 bed in the parlor.
The various relatives are beginning to be revealed by this point, particularly the ones who were in Ohio. On Elinor’s mother’s (Wheeler) side is Martha’s sister “Aunt Edith/Edie” Wheeler (married Breckinridge and Grant with offspring cousins Aubrey, Georgie & Wyn all girls]. Aunt “Edie” lives in Oberlin. On Elinor’s father’s (Bonney) side is Harvey’s adopted sisters Laura, and Jenney (married Chauncy L Gillett). There was also a “cousin Lucy” Scott of Cleveland though her connection is unclear. It was common to re-marry after a spouse died and common to adopt. Also many households automatically took in grandparents as they aged and died. That left the younger mother in charge of a 3 generation household.
Elinor started her life with her brother Elbert in Michigan, and ended her life with her brother Elbert in Huron at “the farm.” The land and wealth of the family on both sides started in Michigan where Elinor’s Paternal Great Uncle Harvey owned land and Elinor’s Maternal Uncle Porter Valoris owned land (1800 acres were sold to Elinor’s father, which drew Harvey to Michigan). Elinor’s mother and maternal Aunt Edith were in Ohio, where Martha was married to Harvey Deville. She waited 2 years while Harvey established a homestead in Michigan and then brought her there where she had Elinor and her brother Elbert. The migration then reverted back to Ohio led by Martha’s refusal to live with domestic violence and Martha’s strong relationship to her sister Edith.
Elinor’s Maternal Uncle Porter Valourus Wheeler was born in Ohio married Emma Breckenridge, had 5 children (Minnie, Lillie, Pearl, Fred & Earl) and migrated to Michigan at some point.
In 1854 Elinor’s Uncle William Wheeler, was born in Ohio. In 1885 he married a woman Elinor says was an orphan from Virginia, from a wealthy peanut and hopp plantation. The 1900 Census lists her as being born in Portage, Wisconsin 1862,with a father A. Downing, from Wisconsin or Scotland and Mother from Scotland. Elinor says they lost a pair of twins early in the marriage. It looks like this couple lived in Michigan and had 3 children over the next 6 year before returning to Virginia from 1893-1995, and then returning to Ohio for the birth of their last child, Edith, in 1898. His wife is listed as dying at 46 years old of acute Phithiesis (TB) with contributory “General Debility”. Eventually William Wheeler lived as a Widow across the street from Elinor’s Black River homestead. His children are listed as Pearl, Lillie, Tessie, Francis, Elsie & Edith.
[Sun. Dec. 1. 1912] Sun Dec.1, Well Miss B phoned to me & wants me to come to work.
[Mon. Dec. 2. 1912] Page 47 Mon, Dec.2. Well I prepared to go to work this morning but it has been raining all morn, so I washed most of the white clothes & pa turned the tub, after dinner I went over to Miss Baumgarts, Well she is an old maid of 54 years, Oh joy. Her cousin Mrs. Fields. of Amherst has been staying with her for the past two weeks & after I had been there an hour or so, she went home. That night exactly at 6 oclock we ate our [again, a half page continues on back] evening meal of dry bread & cake a (a crossed out) dish of peaches & a cup of cereal that I prepared & after we had finish-ed I done up the dishes, went down seller & fixed the fire in the furn-ice for the night, shut & fastened the windows & then went up stairs to the kitchen locked the seller door. I lit the gas lights before supper covered the carnary & pulled down the shades. I locked the front door put the tea kettle to boil. Miss.B. has come to bed. I carried a cup of hot water to her to drink
[Mon. Dec. 2. 1912] Page 48 & the hot water bottle to warm the bed & then I went up stairs to my room & dressed for bed & came down & opened the window & went to bed in the parlar in a little 3/4 three quarter wooden bed that was as hard as a brick
[Tue. Dec. 3. 1912] Tue.Dec.3. I awoke this morning by Miss. B’s callings me I had only sleep one hr. from 5 untill six. I shut the windows & went up stairs & washed & dress & went down the back way to the kitchen put the tea Kettle to boil & went down seller fixed the fire & carried out the ashes & then carried Miss.B. a cup of hot water, her wash rag & the hot water bottle & put the shades up & then uncovered the bird then made coffee & carried Miss.B. her tray with hot corn flakes a cup of coffee, a cup of hot water a butter dab of butter a plate with a slice of bread cut in half with two graham crackers a little pitcher of cream & one of milk & a knife & spoon.
[This is the end of the small sheets where Elinor switches to 8.5/11 sheets both sides. On the back of this last small page she has doodling that looks like practice “clothe-to clothe clothes-garments clothes- Father Pa Papa dady a small pack Mother Ma Mama Tue, Wed 3 Thurs 4 Fri 5 Sat 6 Sun7 Mon 8”]
[Tue. Dec. 3. 1912] Tue.Dec.3. Well Miss B. had hired another girl before me, but as she hadn’t come she took me I have swept & dusted and we had dinner, Miss Addie Field of Amherst took dinner with us she writes the Amherst news for our daily paper & she we’ll be back for supper. The other girl will be here in the morn Oh. Dee. Dee.
[Wed. Dec. 4. 1912] Dec.4. Wed. The same duties of the morning before done in order then a lot of little odds & end to finnish that some one else has left & then the other girl came a Pollish girl of 17 summers. Now Miss B. ask me to show her what she was expected to do, so I took her to her room & then explained her work I help her wash some windows & showed her how to get dinner & she said she didn’t know how to cook & do things unless some one could be right with her. ha.ha.ha. We washed some curtains but had to leave them in the tub. Nellie called for me and we came home together Oh.ho.ho.
[Thurs. Dec. 5. 1912] Thurs.Dec.5. I did a lot of little bits of sewing that had to be done, and am just happy it done.
[Fri. Dec. 6. 1912] Fri. 6 I’ve just helped with house work today
[Sat. Dec. 7. 1912] Sat.7. Aunt Delia & her husband Charlie Campbell & Lillie Farager were here to spend the day. I had to go over to Miss Baumgarts after dinner & put up part of her white curtains & her girl (Minnie)said she hadn’t had a bath since hot weather & that she didn’t want to take one while it was so cold.hahahahahahaho. Oh. ho.ho.ho.ho. if you could have seen Miss.B’s face.ha,ha,ha and when she regain her breath she said Why Minnie, do you mean that? Yes ma’m, came Minnies reply and to think she slept in my bed. Oh, Minnie, said Miss.B. when did you take your last bath, Minnie seemed to be thinking for a few minutes & then said I don’t know I can’t remember, it was when the weath first got real hot. Oh,ho,hohoha, ha,ha,ha,ha, Miss B looked so astonished, annoyed & perplexed, I was nearly dead with convulsions.
[Sun. Dec. 8. 1912] Sun.Dec.8. Oh it rained, and I was glad we could rest.
[Mon. Dec. 9. 1912] Mon.9. Pa turned the tub until I wash the white clothes, but felt so bad he had to lie down & I turned out half of the colored clothes & Elbert the rest so I got them all washed, & we hung them up in the dinning room and dried them
[Tue. Dec. 10. 1912] Tue.10. Didn’t feel able to iron so I set around and sewed today & crocheted a little to. Oh.ho
[Wed. Dec. 11. 1912] Wed.11. Ironed the plain pieces & did house work
[Thurs. Dec. 12. 1912] Thurs.12. Ironed starched pieces & did house work
[Fri. Dec. 13. 1912] Fri.13. Swept, dusted, & scrubed three rooms & helped with other work & crocheted tonight
[Sat. Dec. 14. 1912] Sat.14. Sewed on Nellie dress skirt to helped do house work & tomorrow is another —
[Sun. Dec. 15. 1912] Sun.15. Frank & Ruby & the baby & Mrs. Gilmore & Audrey
[Sun. Dec. 15. 1912]Dec.Sun.15. were here for dinner & all but Audrey were here for supper & Ma & I cooked a chicken dinner & serve a light supper, Oh.dee. I ach so and my bunion has pained me so for the passed three days it makes me sitck to my stomach and I have been sitting up with Nellie nights while she does her studying and it make me so tired.
[Mon. Dec. 16. 1912] Mon.16. Pa & I washed untill noon then he went to town to get his upper plate fixed, he had cracked it. I finished the wash & we had a big one & we were tired.
[Tue. Dec. 17. 1912] Tue.17. Pa & Ma went to Elyria to pay taxes and it has keep me busy baking & doing house work today
[Wed. Dec. 18. 1912] Wed 18. Nellie was sick with a cold & had to come home at noon & ma & pa came home tonight they went to
Operlin Oberlin & to Wellington stayed with Aund Edie & Georgia Tue. night then went to Wellington. Aunt Marina is quite ill.
[Thurs. Dec. 19. 1912] Thurs.19. Nellie has been home all day pa is going back to take care of Aunt M. & Nellie feels bad todayFri. Dec. 20. 1912] Fri.20. Nellie went to school today is short Fred, pa went to Wellington this afternoon ma sent the Aunts each a crocheted thimble holder. I had made for her to send
[Sat. Dec. 21. 1912] Sat.21. I done all the work I could here & then went to Miss Baumgarts & hung 4 pair lace curtins, took Minnie & went to town & done her shoping & sent it back by M. My throat has felt bad for a week & I have ached so all over & I feel so tired tonight.O.dee.
[Sun. Dec. 22. 1912] Sun.22. We didn’t get up very early, but ma & I dressed two chickens for dinner, she ask Audrey to come to dinner but she said they had veal for dinner so we ate & just doing the dishes when they came for dinner so we had to fix them some Oh.me.
[Mon. Dec. 23. 1912] Mon.23. Elbert went to work in the Stove works today. I went done to see if A was sick she felt so bad when she came home this morn, but be fore I got there she had started for home so I went to Mrs Hunters a minute then stood & talked with Mrs Hally till my teeth chattered, Ethel has been quite ill and to day is no better grippe & bealings in ears.
[Tue. Dec. 24. 1912] Tue.24. I washed white clothes ours & most of A Ruby came over this afternoon & she gave each of us girls a handkerchief & ma a dress. from her to Frank he come for supper its a beautifull moon light night. Oh.dee.
[Wed. Dec. 25. 1912] Wed. 25. Christmas. Aunt Marinda birthday.79. Audrey was so ill I went down & gave her a bath & put
[Wed. Dec. 25. 1912]Page 52. Wed.25. her to bed & today I finished the wash & done all the plain ironing I’ve got such a cold & have had to work & I am so sore my head achs & ma don’t feel well & Oh me
[Fri. Dec. 27. 1912] Fri.27. I scrubed & Gertie finished Ironing
[Sat. Dec. 28. 1912] Sat.28. I done house work today & odds & ends Fred went to Berea to see the Wards tonight. Audrey took sick & Dr. Smith came 11-30. I was up all night & gave pills every 15 mi. her fever was 102. George is a bull head.
[Sun. Dec. 29. 1912] Sun.29. I slept until noon then ma called me for dinner & I work as hard as ever un-till ten-30 then got up twice & fixed the fire & took care Audrey
[Mon. Dec. 30. 1912] Mon.30. I baked 12 loaves of bread & a four layer cake & done house work & sewed.
[Tue. Dec. 31. 1912] Tue.31. I done all the wash & Nellie hung then out doors fore me & Miss Baumgart call me tonight