December 5, 1852


Sunday Dec 5th  have been to meeting all day

as usual. Staid in the meeting house

at noon with Augustus wife. Was very

sleepy this afternoon could not possibly 

keep awake.  Have been writing John &

wife this evening & Mr Ames has written some

& sent him a check for 86 doll 39 cts and are

to pay Alson 25 doll for him, for butter & cheese

dried apples &c.


“[T]his was a cloudy foggy day wind north east, not cold.”* Evelina doesn’t mention her eldest son today. She went to church and “staid in the meeting house” with a niece-in-law, Hannah Lincoln Gilmore, during intermission, which was unusual for her. Most other Sundays she went out and socialized; today, not. Perhaps she was avoiding friends and neighbors who, by now, would have heard about Oakes Angier’s illness, and would have wanted to extend sympathy and advice to her, which perhaps she just couldn’t handle yet. She still didn’t have her own thoughts and feelings in order and was so exhausted that she couldn’t stay awake during the afternoon sermon.

As she had done before during times of stress, Evelina turned her attention to money, in this case settling a domestic financial transaction. She spent time in the evening attempting to reconcile an account between her brother John Gilmore, who lived out of town, and her other brother, Alson, who lived on the family farm. There had been, evidently, a three-way trade of “butter & cheese dried apples &c,” a transaction that involved Oakes Ames writing a couple of sizable checks. Might Oakes Ames have helped support some of Evelina’s relatives from time to time?


October 20, 1851


Monday 20th  Susan washed the dishes again this

morning and I took up the parlour carpet and cleared

the room  Mr Healy has taken out the door

where the closet used to be and getting it ready for

the masons  I have been to work getting of[f] the 

paper and to night feel quite lame.  Mr Smiley

has varnished the chairs that he painted last week

Received 6 cheeses and a tub of butter from Mrs Mower

The calendar may have said it was October, but the domestic commotion at the Ames’s suggested spring cleaning.  In order to redecorate, Evelina pulled up the carpet (which had been laid down in pieces), emptied the parlor of furniture, and spent the better part of the day scraping off the old wallpaper. A local carpenter, Henry R. Healy, was also in the house, removing a closet door and preparing a wall for masonry. Were they putting in a new fireplace?  A coal stove would be more likely. Further, another worker, Mr. Smiley, finished varnishing some chairs.  All this went on over and around the usual Monday washing of clothes by servant Jane McHanna.

Scraping wallpaper off of horsehair plaster is hard work and by night time, Evelina was smarting from the day’s exertion. She couldn’t have been unhappy, though. Much had been accomplished and, moreover, her housewifely self must have been pleased to add “6 cheeses and a tub of butter” to the larder.  Louisa J. Mower, a friend from Maine, sent the dairy items to her.  As gifts? As a purchase?

It was a day of accomplishment for Evelina.