April 28th Monday Have had Mrs Connors here to help
about washing, Janes finger being sore She came
at half past 6 and left about half past two charged
42 cts. I helped about the washing Willard Randall
came this afternoon to work over the earth in the
flower garden. Frank came from the shop about
five and worked some on the beds. I have set out
some carraway roots that Alson gave me. Helen came
home with Cyrus
According to some calculations, the 42 cents that Mrs. Connors was paid to do the Ames’s laundry translates to a labor value of $13.20 today. Mrs. Connors was paid little better than a nickel an hour. Evelina worked on the washing today, too, much as she disliked it.
Once the laundry was set out to dry, Evelina got back to the garden. Her son Frank Morton helped her when he got home from work; he seemed to enjoy being in the garden as much as she did. That, or helping his mother till the soil was his assigned chore. Willard Randall, another shovel shop employee and member of the extensive Randall clan, came up again to continue working “over the earth.” Was Willard pleased to walk up to the Ames’s yard to turn over the soil in the boss’s wife’s flower garden? Did he have a garden of his own at home that needing tending?
The caraway roots that Evelina picked up on Saturday at the Gilmore farm went into the ground today, probably in an area close to the kitchen, a time-honored location for every housewife’s herb garden. The rhubarb and horseradish would go in there too.
Helen Angier Ames, the niece who lived next door, returned home today from boarding school in New Bedford. Her uncle, Cyrus Lothrop, “carried her” home, as the phrase went.