June 6, 1851




June 6 Friday  Worked in the garden an hour or two this morning

mended some cotton stockings swept & dusted &c

About three or four Oclock went with Olivers wife

& Mrs Mitchell to North Bridgewater called at

Mr Summers to take Frank Mitchell home & at Mrs

Carrs & Susan Copelands to get my bonnet  The bonnet

is done well  When I returned home found Orinthia

here.  Jane Howard brought her up. 

At last, a bonnet to take home and trim.  Evelina was clearly pleased.  She picked it up in North Bridgewater (today’s Brockton) with her sisters-in-law Sarah Lothrop Ames and Harriett Ames Mitchell.  The ladies retrieved Harriett’s eldest son, Frank Ames Mitchell, in the process. Not yet ten years old, whom had he been visiting?

Otherwise, Evelina’s day was full of quotidian activities: mending, sweeping, dusting. Nothing out of the ordinary popped up in the domestic department. Gardening, too, continued. On this day, Evelina may have planted the asters she picked up yesterday at the Howards’, compliments of a Howard daughter, Louisa.

Joseph Breck in his Breck’s Book of Flowers, 1851, admired the China Aster: “The varieties are now very numerous, and possess exceeding beauty, some of them being almost as large as a small Dahlia, and much more graceful.”

Breck warned against letting the asters “degenerate in to inferior flowers,” and recommended sowing the seeds in May, “in patches,” and transplanting them to “a bed well prepared the last of June.” It may be that Evelina was transplanting the seedlings a little early.  Time would tell.

* Image from edenbrothers.com


June 5, 1851




June 5th Thursday  To day I have been to Mothers, stoped at Orinthias

school and staid about an hour, left Susan there

and got to Mothers about noon.  Met A Augustus & wife

and her sister Elizabeth, John Pool & wife.  On my way

home stoped to Miss Louisa Howards & got some Asters

and at the meeting house to hear Elizabeth Clark play

Met Oliver & wife & Harriet, Mr Clark and

two daughters  A beautiful pleasant day


Several Ameses gathered this afternoon with others for a concert at the meeting house. Presumably, the new organ was featured again, played this time by a more proficient organist than Mr. Rotch from a few Sundays ago. Miss Elizabeth Clark, daughter of Daniel and Elvira Clark and barely 19 years old, treated the listeners to a recital. The Clarks were Unitarians, and Daniel was a capable carpenter who did occasional work for the Ames family. Elizabeth was evidently a fine pianist.

The new organ was possibly made by E. G. and G. Hook of Boston, whose factory was later in Weston, Massachusetts. Known by 1885 as Hook and Hastings, their firm was prominent in the 19th century in the production of church organs. Their first concert hall organ, no longer extant, was installed in the Tremont Temple across from the Boston Common. Their largest was placed in Boston’s Cathedral of the Holy Cross.  More common were smaller organs such as the one in the illustration that were installed in more modest meeting houses, like the Easton one used by the Unitarians in 1851.

The occasion for this particular recital is unknown, and how it came to be held on a weekday afternoon is also a puzzle.  It made sense to the townspeople, however, who turned out in full for the occasion.

*E. G. and G. Hook organ, Boston, Mass., circa 1848.  Athol Historical Society