1899. Original manuscript. Hardcover. Leather-bound, pocket diary with neat and readable entries in ink throughout, preceded by the usual almanac-style data. A section at the rear records some family expenses, birth dates, etc. At the front of the diary are some notes penned by son Guy in 1903, listing his weight as 75 pounds and his proud ownership of a Columbia bicycle. The Condons own a dry goods store in Penobscot, Maine, selling mostly fabrics, buttons, yarns, hats, &c. Samuel (1876-1965) is married to Grace Allen Condon (1875-1979), apparently the main keeper of this diary. Her branch of the family are farmers who work the land on several "lots" as well as keeping poultry, a few cows, pigs, and a horse named Prince. Very Good. Item #041454
The diary opens in January. with the female writer traveling with “Carl” to Boston, then toWashington, before finally arriving at Altamonte [Springs] in Seminole County, Florida, where a“car met us and took us to the cottage. Built fire in fireplace….We settle down for the winter.”Carl fishes and swims, visits Lake Jessup, Orlando and Palm Springs, goes to a “cakewalkdance”, etc. Our diarist goes for walks, receives and answers letters from the “folks inPenobscot”, including “B. and Grace” and Guy, works on various baking and sewing projects,and at one point goes for a ride to Palm Beach and Sulphur Springs with Mrs. Nolan. In late January,she notes that “fires are set in all the groves. Change from 81 [degrees] to 28 in a fewhours…trees all frozen, flowers all gone.” // On March 7, she takes a month-long trip home to Maine, stopping to visit friends in Washington,NY and the Boston area. She arrives at Buckport on April 1, and next day “the girls called in atnight to see me Mary, Grace and Sue C.” The store is immediately a focus of everyone’s time,with Brament (?) and Grace helping with “opening and marking goods”, “the boys around thestore working in the mills”, etc. Other workers at the store and on the farm include Brainard(SBC) himself, Carl, Blanchard, Nod, and Blanche, the latter doing everything from washingfloors to setting hens to planting the crops and vegetable garden. Crops include potatoes, beans,squash, corn and strawberries, while the garden supplies cucumbers, celery, asparagus andtomatoes and peas as well as flowers. There is much haying work to do in the fall, and temporaryday laborers are periodically hired for the farm work. The menfolk also do a lot of fishing (or“trouting”), and in the fall, go “gunning”, at one point shooting 40 rabbits in one afternoon. Oneday in December they “got about 35 loads of firewood chopped—[and]want 20 more.”The family’s entertainment includes the woman writer’s trip to visit friends in Boston andQuincy and Plymouth in Oct., her trip with Guy to Brookline in July, a trip to “the fair” in Septembera town “Field Day” in August, “the young folks getting up a play”, “a visit to Charles Perkins’shouse to hear Mr. LaMarsh”, and attendance at a December “Graphaphone entertainment up at theHall.—proceeds $9.25.” They also go to church fairly regularly, noting who did the preaching.The diary notes local events such as an outbreak of German measles, accidents and deaths, andin November, the famously fierce heavyweight battle between boxers JimJeffries and Tom Sharkey.