April entries in the 1899 diary of John Foss (1860-1934) and Isabelle (Huff) Foss (1869-1929), "Belle", who farmed at West Hollis, Maine. From the entries, it's plain to see that they were a hard working couple.
John and Belle, who married in 1890 at Hollis, Maine, had two daughters:
- Myra Helene Foss (1892-1976), who would marry George Woodbury McKenney
- Annie Evelyn Foss (1900-1988), who would marry Lewis Isaac Woodman
- family history of the Foss family
- links to entries for the rest of January 1899 and other diaries from 1900, 1902, 1903 and 1904
- an alphabetical list of surnames in the diary and an approximation of how many different people of that surname were mentioned in the diaries
- an alphabetical list of individual people mentioned in the diaries, some countless times
The person making the entry is identified in brackets. Throughout the diaries, John made occasional entries, but Belle made the majority of them.
People mentioned in the entries below are identified or tentatively identified the first time they appear. If you have corrections, alternate identities or additional information on anyone mentioned, please leave a comment or contact me directly.
Wednesday, March 29, 1899: [Belle] Rain in the morning and wind in the afternoon. John broke a road to Mason place. 2 Eggs.
- Mason place - John appears to have leased this farm as he worked there often over the years
Friday, March 31, 1899: [Belle] Good Friday. Cloudy in the morning. Cleared off sunny and warm in the afternoon. John bought a piece of beef, 65; Sugar 50 cts.
Saturday, April 1, 1899: [Belle] Cloudy in the morning but fair and quite warm. I made mincemeat. John cut tops on the plains.
Sunday, April 2, 1899: [Belle] Fair and windy. Stayed at home. Got 3 eggs.
Tuesday, April 4, 1899: [Belle] Fair and warm. Jim went two trips to Mason place. 5 Eggs
- Jim - presumably James Benson, husband of Maud (Nelson) Benson
- Clarke - presumably a store, perhaps that owned by lumber dealer Charles Franklin Clark
- Cecil - perhaps Cecil Leighton Haley or Cecil F. Clark
- Myra - Myra Helene Foss, daughter of diarists John Foss and Isabelle (Huff) Foss, "Belle"
Sunday, April 9, 1899: [Belle] Cold, windy. 7 Eggs
Monday, April 10, 1899: [Belle] A pleasant day. Snow going fast. John cutting wood for Cecil today.
Tuesday, April 11, 1899: [Belle] Fair and warm. Cutting for Cecil. I churned 9-1/2 lbs butter. Cleaned and painted. [3 words erased, but look like "got some___"]. 3 eggs.
Wednesday, April 12, 1899: [Belle] John cut wood for Jim. Snowed in the afternoon. 4 eggs.
Thursday, April 13, 1899: [Belle] Fair day. got 10 Eggs
Friday, April 14, 1899: [Belle] John went to Ctr. 20 lbs sugar, 1.00. 3 Eggs
Saturday, April 15, 1899: [Belle] Fair. John went to Clark's and got his peas and harrowed in the afternoon. Up to now got egg 87 and used 64 of them. 5 Eggs today.
Sunday, April 16, 1899: [Belle] Cloudy. I was up home most of the day. Got 13 Eggs tonight.
Monday, April 17, 1899: [Belle] Windy. John cutting cordwood up on his place. 7 Eggs
Tuesday, April 18, 1899: [Belle] A Fair morning. John cut wood. 3 Eggs
Wednesday, April 19, 1899: [Belle] Fair. John & Jim planting peas. Got 14 eggs
Thursday, April 20, 1899: [Belle] Fair and up to the farm planting. 7 Eggs
Friday, April 21, 1899: [Belle] Cleared off in the afternoon. John cutting tops. 11 Eggs
Saturday, April 22, 1899: [Belle] John went to Ctr, got bags ___ [grain ?], 1/2 lb tea ___ [leaves ?] ___ 6 eggs
Sunday, April 23, 1899: [Belle] John & I went to ride and called at Ed Tarbox's. 15 eggs
- Ed Tarbox - presumably Edward A. Tarbox, husband of Jennie B. (Hooper) Tarbox
- Bill Benson - perhaps William V. Benson, son of James Benson and Louisa (Varney) Benson; William, whose middle name may have been Varney, would die in 1901.
Wednesday, April 26, 1899: [Belle] A shower in morning. John picking rocks on the hill. 10 eggs.
Thursday, April 27, 1899: [Belle] Fast day. John Settled with C. T. Clark and paid store bill today. Paid $15 to A. L. B. Acct. 8 [presumably the number of eggs Belle got this day]
- C. T. Clark - either a C. T. Clark or Belle meant to write C. F. Clark may have been lumber dealer and store owner Charles Franklin Clark
Saturday, April 29, 1899: [Belle] John up to the Farm plowing. Mr. Guptil here to dinner. 4 Eggs
- Mr. Guptill - an entry from 1904 mentions a "Mr. Guptinall" who was stopped by with his tin cart. Perhaps these men are one and the same.
- Charlie and Lena - presumably Charles Hiram Johnson and Elena S. (Tarbox) Johnson, "Lena"
- Frank Benson - perhaps Francis Benson, another son of James Benson and Louisa (Varney) Benson
Wednesday, May 3, 1899: [Belle] John helped Bill Benson.
Again, if you have information to share on any of the people mentioned, including the Foss family itself, please leave a comment or contact me directly.
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