June 24, 1851



June 24th  Tuesday  Emily is very much better this morning and

is quite rational  I was at work in the garden

awhile weeding and transplanting and then I

went to sewing on the hair cloth again.  Mother

is knitting a pair of coloured stockings for Susan

of yarn I bought at the factory yesterday

Mrs Sarah Ames stoped awhile here  I get along

very slowly with my work  Spent the afternoon picking hair

Everyone exhaled with relief today as young Emily Witherell recovered from her congestion of the brain. What exactly had been wrong with her? Had she fallen or spiked a fever or had an allergic reaction to something?

Evelina went back to her summer routine of morning work in the garden, midday dinner for the whole family, and sewing in the afternoon. The horse hair upholstery for the new lounge was taking a long time to make. She may have been skilled with a needle, but this project was proving difficult.  She had the company of her mother, however, who was visiting them in North Easton this week.

The elderly Hannah Gilmore was knitting some stockings for her granddaughter, Susie.  She was using yarn that Evelina most likely bought at the Morse factory shown in the photograph. Located in South Easton and owned at the time by E. J. W. Morse, the business produced high quality thread and yarn.

* Photo borrowed from Edmund C. Hands, Easton’s Neighborhoods, 1995, p. 28

4 thoughts on “June 24, 1851

    • Sounds indelicate, doesn’t it? Evelina is attempting to sew a new cover for the cushion (she calls it a mattress) for her new lounge. She’s using an old piece of haircloth that once covered the pulpit cushion at church. She has boiled it and now, I can only guess, is “picking” at it to give it shape. That, or perhaps she’s sorting through some actual horsehair. Other thoughts?
      Any reader know about horsehair cloth?

  1. Old Oliver had tried his hand at the cotton business with David Manley back during the War of 1812, when it seemed that cotton factories would be sure-fire winners: “1813 summer – began to build cotton mill back in Easton with Asa Waters. Oliver made the tools for the spinning frame and apparatus.”Before I left Plymouth and I made the rest of the machinery that was wanted for the factory and made for other people until peace was declared and spoilt the business” He doesn’t mention Manley in that entry, but later: “Feb 10, 1815 Goverrnor signs Easton Manufacturing Corporation (Galer-p53-57) “set up by the above deed divisions to David Manley buys about 1/4 of the factory – then it burned Manley managed – continued as agent 6 or 7 years and managed so badly that we was glad to sell out to him for $15 on a hundred paid in and I lost 8 or 9 thousand dollars by it.” Stoughton’s cotton mill, the Gay Cotton Manuf. Co. started started up in 1813 and failed, but ws eventually turned into a success a decade later by Leonard Hodges. James Beaumont started the first Mass. cotton factory with machine-powered spinning in Canton in 1804.
    This is probably more info than needed on cotton, but we (The Stoughton Histrical Society) have a lot of the old records of the Stoughton Factory and are in the process of buying some good stuff on Beaumont’s first decade.

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