Aug 2d 1852
Monday Was about house most of the forenoon and this
afternoon have been to work on my traveling
dress again had to let out the front & widen
the arm it was so tight Helen spent the
afternoon here Mrs G & Mrs S Ames called
in the furnace neighborhood and coming home
got caught in a heavy shower
Evelina and her father-in-law, Old Oliver, had a different perspective on the afternoon’s rainfall. She called it “a heavy shower,” while he wrote that it was “a small shower.”* Because her female relatives, Almira Ames and Sarah Lothrop Ames, “got caught” in it and probably arrived home soaked, Evelina would have seen the rainfall as torrential. Old Oliver, on the other hand, would only have considered the rain in terms of the measure of water it delivered, whether he was indoors or out. From his dual position as farmer and shovel manufacturer, he considered today’s rainfall as modest. As often happened, the two in-laws differed on details.
While the rain fell in Easton, important politics were getting underway about a thousand miles to the west. In Iowa and Missouri on this date, elections to the 33rd session of the U.S. House of Representatives were being held. It was the beginning of the campaign season, something that might sound familiar to today’s readers. Between them, these two states (which, except for California to the far west and Texas to the far south, were perched on what was then the frontier between the eastern states and the western territories) would send nine representatives to Washington, the majority of them Democrats.
As we have mentioned previously, this 1852 election would be won by the Democrats, in sufficient strength to sound the death knell of the old Whig party. From its ashes would rise the new Republican party.
*Oliver Ames, Journal, Stonehill College Archives, Arnold Tofias Collection