Elinor’s 1919 Diary Pages (after a gap of 4 years)
[There is another fire in 1919 of the homestead (where Gertie, Elinor, Elbert still live with Ma and Pa, starting in the roof. Gertie tried to climb up the roof but fell and had to have medical care and later care from Chiropracter, Dr. Easton, unable to work for 3 weeks. Later “Pa and the boys” shingled the south side of roof July 5, 1919.”
Also, during this year Frank Babcock comes into view (sends a card and visits Elinor one evening chaperoned by Nellie) and will eventually propose to and marry Elinor. Prior to meeting Frank Babcock, Elinor seems to be being courted by Dan, who loans family members cash at times. She is corresponding (letters) with Dan, and in July saying she hasn’t heard from him since May.
In addition to selling eggs, she apparently is processing chicken feathers that she gets from a local storekeeper. She describes getting them by the barrel, washing them in cold water, wringing them out, washing them in boiling water, wringing them, and then putting them through another bath of cold water. There is no mention of wearing a mask to prevent picking up any virus/bacteria from the feathers. But she claims she got sick after cleaning them, and later has diarrhea, chills, and general sickness.
Audrey and Martha go to church again and Audrey buys a Gibson organ for 6.00. The diary does not mention that she or any others know how to play it. During 1915, Elinor’s sister Audrey and husband George have split up and Audrey has their child Martha and Audrey is using legal action to try to secure child support from George Carlisle, husband. Although Audrey was awarded 500/yr in child support she is apparently not getting it and Elinor goes with Audrey and daughter Martha to court to testify about this. George Carlisle’s brother is in France (? if military) and discloses that George is in El Paso Texas and is a Superintendent of the Pacific Ship Building Co. thereby able to pay but delinquent.
She starts to mention the wind, though it isn’t clear if she means a direction the wind is coming from or going.
Elbert is doing day labor at the shipyard but is often sick. Frank also is not working due to illness. A Mrs. McKenney dies and Uncle William Wheeler and Elbert and Frank were pall bearers. Audrey gets sick with a fever 103. Barth Farayer dies. She and Elbert have “lumbaygo”. Elbert begins to go to a Dr. Easton (Chiropractor) and this continues for over 30 years on and off. Audrey remains ill and neither she nor Elbert can work.
At some point in the 4 year gap in the diary, Fred must have come home. Now in May she talks about him being included in family dinners and also mention Fred’s wife Ethel Noderer who has baby Laura Ann Bonney within the next year. Apparently Pa and Gertie are still in Cuba at this point and Elinor writes to them because Audrey is so sick and they come home in the later part of the month. She recovers by the middle of the month. But her daughter Martha gets measles and missed 3 weeks of school leaving Elinor to care for her after Audrey recovers and returns to work. Nellie is married by now to John Harnish and John’s sister Arizona Ione (1890-1919) has died. Relatives come from Tennessee for the funeral (probably John’s mother Ella Ione Bakers possibly traveling with Cecil Clair Harnish, John’s brother). Later, Elinor refers to “John’s mother & C”. Elinor is helping out at the Nellie/John home and making a “cornstarch pie” which was a favorite of Nellie’s.
Nellie was 9 months pregnant with Ella Jane Harnish and Dr. Smith made a home visit and took Nellie to the hospital to deliver (April 22, 1919). Later Nellie “took cold in her left breast” and stayed at the hospital 10 days and had her breast lanced.
There is a mention that Cousin Francis Wheeler came home from France June 27. 1919, presumably WWI. though his place in the extended family isn’t clear.
There is little mention of religion up to this point in the diary but in one entry she says she goes to prayer meeting.
The household work continues with cooking, baking, laundry, scrubbing furniture and floors, washing windows, and doing all the mending. In addition she talks of getting the 200 pounds of lard done and placed in brine.
Her birthday gifts include a “pretty silk shirt waist” from Audrey. ]
Thurs.Feb.26  Spademan’s brought me two barrels of chicken feathers & I have sorted some of them, have got to finish tomorrrow. Lillie sent me X’Mas card & handkerchief. cold cloudy, spits with snow with sunchiining through sometimes. South westerly wind.
Fri March.27. South to west wind snow flurrys, little sunshine . I sorted 1 barrel of feathers, put them through a tub of cold water through the wringer thru a tub of boiling water & then another cold wash. began to get sick about 2 p.m. & when I finished the feathers at 4-30 I had to give it up sit down. & then go to bed. Fred & Ethel & Nellie & John were here a little while after supper, Martha spent the after noon & evening with Nellie, Fred & Ethel ate supper with Nellie & John.
Sat.April.28. Heavy snow fall early this morning Westerly wind snow flurrys all day.
Sat.29.May. Light snow flury this morning cloudy all after noon westerly wind. I was sick all Fri night got up feeling worse out Sat. got dinner & had cramp & back door trot & had to go to bed with chills sick all night & not feel able to work today. Nellie & John here this after noon & for lunch & then they & Audrey & Martha went to Church. Audrey bought Gibsons organ & payed $6.00 for it.
Mon June30 Cloudy all morn until 10-30 sun shinny all p.m. warm & thawed south to S.E. Mon night beginning to rain heavy showers 9 p.m.
tue.July 31. Dark and Cloudy heavy mist wind S & S.w. Heavy fog all after noon 4.p.m. rain evening colder I did Part the washing
Wed.1. August wet wind a little in N in morning. colder today with rain to heavy mist all day Dark and Cloudy all day No company today. every thing as usual & as dead as anything
Jan.Thurs.2. Nice bright sunshine but cold all day Two eggs. I finished the washing today.
Jan.Fri.3 Sunshiny but Oh so cold I moped the floor and picked up & cleaned up & did some ironing. two eggs.
Sat.4.Jan. Oh so cold, but the sun shone bright & the wind is & has been in west & S.W. I ironed & mended & sewed on buttons.
Sun.5. Haven’t felt very well today
Jan.Mon.6. Not so well today, swepted & cooked the meals about all.
Tues.7. Did my general house work.
Wed.8. Audrey, Martha & I went to Court to testify to George’s non-support his brother Ernest wrote Audrey from France & told her that George was in elpasso Texas & that he is Superentendent of the Picific Ship building Co. Nellie stayed here at the house while we were gone, Oh, but it made me tired.
Thurs.9. I did my house work & sewed on my dress some.
Fri.10. I did the washing & feel about tired out.
Sat.11. I baked 8 loaves of bread 3 graham 5 white.
Sun.12. Finds me to ill to work or do anything.
Mon.13. Just cooked the meals & sewed some Ethel Bonney, Fred’s wife. was here & spent the day & Nellie was home to. Ethel brought some home made -S- sausage
Tue.14. Nellie came with Martha to dinner I have my dress most done today
Tue.15. I did my house work & went to Prayer Meeting Mrs Green called on me today I like her
Thurs.16. & I am 34 yrs. old today & Audrey gave me a pretty silk shirt waist & Dan wrote me a letter & I got it this morn. Elbert went to work in the shipyard last Wed. morn. had to stay home sick on Fri. but, worked Sat & Sun Mon & Tue & Wed & today he didnt work he has a cold. & Frank is not working. he has a cold.
Fri.17. I washed today Nellie came home for 1 hr. this after noon Mrs Nagy was here so long this morn I did not get my wash started untill after dinner and finished at 5 oclock, my back hurts tonight. Audrey & Nellie & John have gone to their Sun school class party tonight over to Mrs. ______ Elbert went to town all after noon & gone tonight Martha & I are all alone.
Sat.18. I have baked 4 loaves of graham & 5 loaves of white bread.
Feb.17. Mrs. Mc Kenney died today
Feb Elbert & Frank & Uncle Will were pall bearers with several others for Mrs. McKenney
Sat.22. Audrey seriously ill fever 103 2/8
Sun.23. fever 100 3/8 very weak
Mon.Feb.24. Audrey’s “fever 100 3/8 very weak. Mrs Bert Farayer died today.
Tue.25. Audrey fever still high am taking care of her day & night & trying out lord Elbert & I both got lumbaygo
Wed 26. Audrey don’t seem any better Dr. seems as anxious as I do, am doing all I can for her. poor child.
Thurs.27. Everything going as they were yesterday. Elbert hasn’t worked any since, well, before Audrey took sick
Fri. 28. I sent a card to pa & Gertie for Audrey is sure in bad shape
March 1. Sat. I’m getting tired out. Back so bad can hardley get up or down.
March.Sun.2. Audrey’s better today I thank God My back most killing me & Elbert’s hurts him to. I only did the cooking and took care of Audrey today.
Mon.3. Audrey is better. We have the lard most done & have got to put hot in brine.
Tue.4. Audrey is gaining Elbert is about the same & I feel no good, but working hard Maybe I’ll workit off.
Wed.5. Audrey sat up a few minutes today. We have lard finished today & have some over 200 lbs as near as one can figure. Elbert complains so bitterly of his back, I am sorry but don’t known What to do for him, he is Dr. with Easton.
Thurs.6. Audrey sat up half hr. & feels quite good Hope nothing goes wrong nora she’s so anxious to get back to work.
Fri. Everything going fine with Audrey but Elbert don’t seem to mend.
Sat.8. Audrey up walking around.
Sun.9. A. getting better but me, I’m getting more lazy each day.
Mon.[March]10. Tue.11 Wed. 12. Thurs.13 Fri.14 Sat 15. Sun 16. Mon 17 Tue 18. I believe Audrey started back to work Tues. 18.
Well I sort of lost track of things Martha lost three weeks of school had measles & had it hard. & I have had to care of her most of the time. I think she started back to school on the ______
I have had to go to Nellie’s quite a lot for some days she don’t feel so well. Pa & Gertie came home_____
Clate & Easel & Aunt Jen & Earl D’s wife was here April 13. Pa brought several gal. of Maple surrupe home to some for Fred, Frank & Nellie. John ‘s half-sister died April 15. I stayed with Nellie all day
I made pie plant pie gathered from the garden & done greens & sent to Nellie & pie. by John.
Thur. April 17  I stayed with Nellie all day. They buried Johns sister today, his mother to C eame to from Tenessee.
Fri.18. I’m so lazy oh i’ts terrible. Gertie washed today. Elbert went to work
April 7 Sat 19. I only did what I had to do. Gertie has been doing most of the cooking since she got home, but its me for odds & ends. & thats how I feel to.
Sun.20. I was going to Nellies to bake chicken pie, but took with that pain in my side & had to stay home all day. John’s mother & C (E?) were with them today Nellie don’t feel her best.
Mon.21. I feel week I did a good big washing today, hope nellie don’t call.
Tue.22. Nellie called 6-30. I got right up and dressed & went , she called John back from the yard, I did her work up made her a cornstarch pie she wanted
April 22 so bad & got dinner we ate & did up the dishes & the Dr. Smith came & we left for the hospital a little after 3 oclock mountain time & at 4-30 Nellie was in bed made as comfortable as possible with a baby girl 6 3/4 lbs. Little Ella Jane Harnish she has a mop of dark brown hair a round head, long eyelashes, very plump & short, & has slept good up till I left.
April.Wed.23. Well I havent’t b een feeling very well & I came home with a sick head ach last night, it lasted all night, but I look after my incuba-tor & went up & saw Nellie & the baby both good & getting along fine. pa took me in a row boat up to the round-house bend & helped me up the hill, then I ask a man if I might ride with him down to the Nickle Plate & he said I could & so I did & I bought meat & macironi and a can of yellow stiing beans & can of salmon & slices minced ham & 1 lb niger toes & phoned home to Gertie came with my rugbbers & an umberla for it rained and I wore Audreys new hat.
[April 24-July 09 1919 Gap that seems to be summarized here]
Nellie took cold in her left breast & I brought her home on the 10th day I worked hard day & night for a week with her, but she had to have her left breast lanced & I had the incubator to take care of, & oh such a time, after three weeks I was so tiered out I took cold, it settled on my lungs, I stayed in bed one day & thought I’d stay in bed the next, but the roof caught fire & I got up & helped put out the fire. Gertie tried to climb up the roof on the dry shingle & roll off & hurt her back & yelled like a lunatic & then She had to have the Dr. & laterr I took her to Dr Easton & she got able to work, the took cold & had guinsey & couldn’t do any thing for three weeks, Audrey’s heart is feeling bad again but she has been working steady, I have been working hard to picking peas & beans & canning washing up double blankets & comfor lovers. I caned 1 qut of pea’s & picked 3 pks. & picked 1 1/2 by string beans & canned 10 quts. & 1 pt. Nellie & John & Ella Jane or in ther own home doing well. Fred has been sick for a mo with rehumatism. I haven’t heard from Dan since May 25, 1919. Mr Babcock came in for a visit one evening while Nellie was home & later he sent me a card. Cousin Aubrey Breckenridge sent me a Card. Cousin Francis Wheeler came home from France June 27. 1919. Pa & the boys shingled the south side of roof July 5. 1919