August 26, 1851

 

Abbott H. Thayer, Angel, 1887, oil Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of John Gellatly

Abbott H. Thayer, Angel, 1887, oil
Smithsonian American Art Museum
Gift of John Gellatly

 

Tues Aug 26th  Clinton Lothrop died about ten Oclock

last night  Has been sick a long time with

the Typhus fever  Mrs Witherell & I made the

shroud for him  Mrs Mitchell went to Taunton

to get Bonnets &c for Mrs Lothrop

Rebecca White came after Pauline this morning

Alson here to Dinner and tea is drawing stones for

Edwins cellar.  Oakes A and Frank returned this evening

 

Dewitt Clinton Lothrop finally died.  He had been suffering from typhus, “an acute infectious disease caused by the parasite Rickettsia prowazekii, transmitted by lice and fleas [,and] marked by high fever, stupor alternating with delirium, intense headache and dark red rash.”* It’s not the same disease as typhoid fever, although the two conditions have some similarities. Clinton, as he was known, had probably been bitten by a flea.

One of nine sons of Howard and Sally Lothrop, Clinton was a brother of Sarah Lothrop Ames. While most of his surviving brothers had moved away from Easton in pursuit of their own lives, Clinton was the duty son who had stayed home with his parents. Only 26 years old and married with two small sons, he had tended the family farm.

Evelina and Sarah Witherell quickly prepared a shroud for the body, while Harriett Mitchell rode off to Taunton to find mourning clothes for the young widow, Elizabeth Howard Lothrop (or for the mother, Sally Williams Lothrop.) That no one had purchased the mourning clothes before now suggests that, despite the probability of death, everyone had hoped that Clinton would recover.

It was a busy day for Evelina.  Besides helping sew the shroud, she saw her friend Pauline Dean depart to visit elsewhere in Easton and welcomed her brother Alson to midday dinner. Alson was working nearby, helping his son, Edwin Williams Gilmore, build a house.  Jane McHanna washed clothes, and she and Evelina probably continued to set the house to rights after a weekend of guests. Oakes Angier and Frank Morton returned home from their fishing trip.

* Craig Thornber, Glossary of Medical Terms Used in the 18th and 19th Centuries, http://www.thornber.net

2 thoughts on “August 26, 1851

  1. What did Evelina mean when she said Alson is “drawing stones for

    Edwins cellar”?

  2. Not sure what the phrase “drawing stones” means. I do know that Edwin Williams Gilmore was building a new house in North Easton and that his father was helping him. I inferred that “drawing stones” had something to do with putting in the cellar, perhaps making the cellar walls?

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