08/01 TUESDAY - A fire broke out last night about 11 o'clock in Orange Street. We had just retired for the night. Mr. Dickerman, John and myself went to it. There I saw for the first time a steam fire engine work. There were three of them there and they worked splendidly. A good share of the inside of the building was burned out, but the walls were all left standing. The lower floor was used for an eating house, upstairs was a storehouse for Singer Sewing Machines. I am told also a room where a lodge of colored masons met. They had a meeting that evening previous to the fire. We rose this morning between 6 and 7 o'clock and went down to see where the fire was in Orange Street and then walked up to the barracks at Grape Vine Point to find George. We were told that he did not stay there last night and no trace of him could be found. So we took a horse car and rode back to the city and got breakfast at an eating house nearly opposite the Depot in ____Street. After breakfast, we continued our search and inquiring for George and finally succeeded in learning that he went over to Bridgeport last night in company with William Warren. John and myself spent the day as best we could. We visited the Trumbull Gallery on the college grounds and about 3 o'clock P.M. George arrived from Bridgeport. We immediately started for Mr. Andrews, the maker of the patented flour sifter. We got so far as Elisha Dickerson's where we found his brother Chauncey who had just made it there to see me. He took us both in his wagon and carried us to his home to see his wife and then drove with us over to see Mr. Andrews. There he left us and we talked with Mr. Andrews until about 6 o'clock about the right of Fairfield County for the sifter. We finally came to terms on certain conditions until Friday to which time we got the refusal of it when he would come to Danbury prepared to give George the papers provided he could arrange the matter with Parmalee & Bradley in a way satisfactory to us, as he has given P & B some machines to sell for him with certain claims against the sales of them in the vicinity. We took supper at the same place we did our breakfast and then all went again to Mr. Dickerman's to stop for the night. I had a hard headache in the P.M. and evening and retired with it. 08/02 WEDNESDAY - I slept but little last night and feel poorly today. Mr. Dickerson gave us all free tickets to take a steamer and go to Money Island on an excursion, but before it was time to start, George received orders to report to the depot with his horn ready to go at 2 P.M by express train to go with the band to play at the grand reception to be given the two companies of the 17th regiment from that place. I concluded to go with them to see the reception at Norwalk and then go home. This of course prevented us from going on the excursion. While at Norwalk, I saw John and Harry Brayman and their wives. As George was to return to New Haven to get his pay tomorrow, I left him in the lunch tent in Norwalk getting his dinner and came home. I fell in with A. G. Crosby on the train coming up. Bell was at the Depot expecting us. Sarah Purdy was at the house when I got home waiting to see us to pay for the dispatch I sent to Norwalk when her brother died. I would not take it. 08/03 THURSDAY - Very warm. I rose rather late. After breakfast and doing my chores, I went to bed again and slept until 10 o'clock, being very tired and not feeling well. I am not feeling in a condition to work. Just as I got up from my sleep, Robert drove by on his way to market with tomatoes and cabbages. I drew some beer and we drank together, then I rode downtown with him. I went to the Post office and called at the factory to see Mr. Crofut but he was not in, so I came home to dinner. After dinner, I went down to the shop again and arranged with Mr. Crofut for $400 tomorrow to help George buy the right for flour sifters in this county. A thunder shower came up about 4 o'clock this afternoon and for a few minutes, it rained hard. It sprinkled a little in the evening, but cleared off when we retired. Father came this way from work at night and brought our pail home which Bell borrowed a few days ago. I drew some beer for him. In the evening, I went to the depot expecting to meet George. The regiment was paid off and nearly all the boys came home, but he stayed over to play in the band in Bridgeport tomorrow at the reception there for the returned soldiers. I was much disappointed as it is very necessary for him to be here tomorrow to sign a note to be given to Mr. Crofut for the money he gets of him. Bell was at the depot expecting to meet him and was disappointed also. 08/04 FRIDAY - I went to the telegraph office before breakfast to telegraph to George who is in Bridgeport to come home on the morning train to attend to getting his papers from E. C. Andrews for the County right for Tilden's Universal Flour Sifter, but concluding finally not to send the dispatch, thinking it would do no good. I got a late breakfast and then took a hat over to John Bouton, but it did not fit. I started back to the shop to exchange it and met Andrew Knox who wished me to get a hat for him and let it go towards a little painting he intends to o for me. I got it and carried it to him and made 50 cents on it. I exchanged the one for John Bouton and carried it to him, but this one did not suit either, and while on my way back with it, I sold it to one of the firm of VanDensen & Matthews at a profit of 50 cents also. Mr. E.C. Andrews of New Haven, the owner of the right for this county of Tilden's Universal Flour Sifter came on the morning train according to arrangement and I did the business of getting the papers for George by endorsing Mr. Crofut's note for 3 months and getting it discounted at the Pahquioque Bank. The note was for $400. I borrowed from the Savings Bank $59 to make out the $450, the discount on the Note of $400 being about $9. We had the document. It was made out by Lieut. Governor Roger Averill. The fee was 50 cents, of which I paid half for George. After the business was completed, I met Gussie at O. H. Swift's store and did up a dress which had been dyed for Josephine Dare and a parasol. I directed it and gave to Edward Barnum on the cars to hand to Mr. Gillette, the ticket agent at Bethel. Gussie then did a little shopping and then we had ice cream at DeKlyn's. We then came home and soon after, Ezra Wildman came to the house for a roll of Griswold's Salve. After tea, Mr. Pond helped me carry my tool chest over to his barn. I intend keeping them there for the present. He is to build a bench and I supply the tools and thereby both will be accommodated. I walked downtown with Mr. Cocking. I went to the depot to meet George. He came with his rifle, cartridge box and belts and his horn, an E flat cornet and over $200 in his pockets. He came round to my house with Bell (who also met him at the depot). He left the $200 overnight with me for safekeeping. He called up at Father Griswold's for a few moments. The house was full of ladies of the Sewing Society who meet there tonight. George drank a glass of beer and then I went up home with him and Bell. I stayed a short time and he played several pieces on his horn. When I returned, I took care of baby and let Gussie go up home to the Sewing Society. 08/06 SATURDAY - Very warm. I mowed in front of my premises; also Father Griswold's and I trimmed the works. I worked at it nearly all the forenoon. George came down just before I finished and helped me and then we went downtown to pay the savings bank what I borrowed - $59 yesterday. We went to Charles H. Sanford's office and he applied for a license to canvas for the flour sifter. From there, we went over to Harris' clothing store and he bought a pair of pants and a vest. We then came home and he took dinner with us. I took a nap and about 4 o'clock, Gussie and I took Georgie some bread cake and a bowl of jelly and went up home to tea. After tea, I cut Father's hair. George came down home with us and I went with him and Bell to market. After we did our trading, we went over to Singing School; there was no one there but Harriet Wheeler. I stayed awhile and came home leaving Bell, George, and Harriet there. They came home by way of my house. I gave him a black spring brimmed hat and went up home with him to help carry a basket with things which he bought in the street and two of his old uniform coats, one of them an overcoat. 08/06 SUNDAY - We rose rather late. Gussie attended church in the morning and I in the P.M. Brother Hill preached in the A.M. A Mr. Huntington preached in the P.M. George attended church all day and sat with us. This is his first Sunday home since he returned from the army. George and Bell came down and went with us to meeting in the evening at the 1st Congregational Church to hear Reverend Mr. Huntington from Stamford. He is acting as agent to establish a state institution for the cause of orphan children, especially the children of deceased soldiers. It was a Union Meeting. It has been showery (thunder) all day and rained very hard just as we came home from church in the evening. 08/07 MONDAY - Showery again today, thought there has been considerable sunshine during the day. I have worked all day in the shop. After tea I pulled some weeds from my strawberry bed until nearly dark when George came in and I went downtown with him. He mailed a pile of letters to Florida, Maine and elsewhere including money to pay what he borrowed at different times of different ones when he was in the service. I bought some Sal Soda to wash Mr. Cocking's hat with. I went to O.H. Swift's and got one dozen lesson Books and a Golden Chain of Showers. The singing book was for Avery Raymond's daughter. The 1st Connecticut Cavalry arrived in New Haven from Washington on Saturday evening. Henry Hurd arrived home on the morning train today. 08/08 TUESDAY - The showers are over and the day has been lovely clear and pleasant and not very warm for the season. George called this morning while we were breakfast. He walked down as far as Main Street with me as I went to work. I washed Mr. Cocking's hat in the Sal Soda before breakfast and took it with me to the shop and finished it over and had it trimmed. Mr. Pond has been building a work bench in his barn today and I am to leave my tools there for the joint accommodation of us both. I pulled weeds from my strawberry plants until dark and then went to market. Harriet started for the cars to go to Stamford this morning, but got left. 08/09 MONDAY - Pleasant. As usual, I worked hard in the shop. After tea, I went to market and walked up with Mr. Pond who was looking for Dr. Bennett, his wife being sick (confinement). 08/10 THURSDAY - Pleasant in the morning, cloudy in the P.M. It commenced raining about 9 o'clock in the evening. On my way to work in the morning, I bought of Benedict & Nichols 1 # yards of cotton cloth at 36 cents a yard. I worked hard all day. After tea, I went to market and the Jeffersonian Office for paper and at Couch's gallery for 4 card pictures of the baby. Our neighbor Mr. Pond had a son born last night at about 11 o'clock. 08/11 FRIDAY - Pleasant. Before breakfast I wrote a letter to Everett C. Andrews in New haven to know why he does not send the order of flour sifters to George. I did not have time to mail it and I left it until George came in for dinner while I was at the shop. Gussie showed it to him and he approved its wording and took it and mailed it himself. Mr. and Mrs. Cocking took the train this morning for Fort Hamilton, Long Island to visit her sister. Gussie called on Widow Burr Bradley this P.M. I went into the street in the evening and walked up with Robert Dunning. He stopped in when I got home and compared his rifle bullets with my pistol balls. 08/12 SATURDAY - A beautiful day. I worked until about 4 o'clock and then quit. We received our pay this P. M. We now receive our pay weekly on Saturdays instead of once in two weeks and on Monday. This is the second pay day under the new order of things, but the first that I have drawn as I did not work last week. I brought home a new black hat for John W. Bouton which he ordered about a week ago. After tea, I started to carry John's hat over to him and saw him in the road near Father Griswold's lot on George Street and gave it to him there. He paid me ($2.50) the price for it and I returned home. I then started up home to see him (George?) and found him away. I then went into the street and there I found him. We did some trading and he took a flour sifter from Parmalee's store for a sample with which to commence business on Monday morning. He came home with me and showed Gussie and Fanny how it worked by running some flour through it. He forgot a loaf of bread which he bought for Anna Heinman. Before retiring, I marked of the Sunday School Advocates preparatory to distributing tomorrow. 0813 SUNDAY - A beautiful day. George came down before breakfast for a loaf of bread which he left here last evening. Gussie went to church in the morning. I went down to Sunday School and to church in the P.M. It was the sacrament Service. George came home with me and we put Georgie in his carriage and all went up home to take supper with him as it is his 24th birthday. There was a prayer meeting held at 5 o'clock for Mother's special benefit, she not being able to get out to church. I lay on the bed in George's room during the meeting and had a good nap. George and Bell came down with us as we came home. I drew a glass of beer for George and then I went with him and Bell to meeting. Brother Hill's brother-in-law preached for us. 08/14 MONDAY - Pleasant. Before breakfast, I wrote to Carleton & Porter ordering $2.00 worth of illustrated books for children for Fanny to use in the infant class. As I went to work I mailed it. Harriet Wheeler came home from New Fairfield today where she has been visiting for a few days. Father Griswold came home on the train from a trip in his district. George went out for the first time to sell flour sifters. He received by this evening's mail a letter from Everett C. Andrews saying that he would ship the sifters immediately. Teachers' meeting in the evening. I, of course attended as I am Secretary and Treasurer. George came home with me after the meeting and we talked awhile at our gate. I copied the minutes of the Sunday School Teachers' Meeting before retiring. 08/16 WEDNESDAY - Pleasant and warmer than it has been for several days past. I carried 12 quarts of crab apples to Parmalee & Bradley's as I went to work in the morning. George took sifters off from Parmalee & Bradley's hands today. The package of small books for the infant class which I ordered on Monday morning came today. Mother, Bell, George and Gussie went over to Aunt Louisa's visiting this afternoon. Our folks had Mr. Thomson's horse to bring Mother over. We raised our bill of prices at the shop today. 2 % (?) on a dozen, except No. 5 the coarsest quality and for extra heavy hats we raised the 4 % (?). The books I ordered Monday morning for the infant class came today. After tea, I went to class and found no one there and cane home again after waiting for the mail. 08/17 THURSDAY - There were indications of rain in the A.M. but it finally came off pleasant. I carried a flour sifter with me to the shop this morning for Edward Stevens who engaged it yesterday. George Benjamin engaged one, also John W. Bussing. I carried one down to Mr. Benjamin's this evening with a peck of crab apples. And left one with Mr. Pond this morning to show his folks and let them try it. I expected John Bouton to come today to lay a new floor to my stoop today, but he did not come and now I think I will defer it until I paint the house. I picked a part of my last tree of crab apples tonight. 08/18 FRIDAY - Pleasant. I sold a sifter this morning for George to a German named Syfer. I carried one to Mr. Carlson to try. Henry Hurd, just home from the war, was shopped at Mr. Crofut's today. The facers at the shop being tired out and discouraged stopped work and thereby obliged us to stop for want of hats. We came home about the middle of the afternoon. I pulled weeds from my strawberry beds until about dark and then went to market. I called at Randall's Store to see some flour sifters and made arrangement to place some of George's kind beside them. Took a letter from the Office from George from Mr. Andrews of New Haven. I carried over to him at Aunt Louisa's where he was spending the evening. He came home with me and wrote Sterling & Peck of Bridgeport about the sifters as Andrews wrote George that they wanted 4 dozen. Georgie is sick; he has dysentery symptoms. 08/19 SATURDAY - Foggy in the morning, pleasant and warm in the P.M. In order to have the flues repaired at the shop, we all stopped work at noon. The trimmers struck for higher prices today. In the P.M., I went with George to sell sifters. He had Mr. Judd's horse. We hauled 8 dozen from the depot. I went to market in the evening. Before retiring, I wrote to E. C. Andrews in New Haven and enclosed $53.20, his bill for the 8 dozen sifters, this being the amount after deduction $6.00 for the 10 machines which he allowed George that were at Benedict & Nichols' when he bought the county rights. I left the letter to be mailed tomorrow night or Monday morning. 08/20 SUNDAY - Pleasant and very warm in the P.M. Gussie attended church in the morning. I went to Sunday School and to meeting in the afternoon. Brother Hill preached from 2nd Tomothy2:3. George went home with Aunt Louisa to tea; he stopped at my house on his way to look at the letter I wrote for him last evening. After tea, Gussie went over to Elisha Severine's to see how their baby was; it is only just live. While she was gone I wrote to Carleton & Porter ordering another copy of Sunday School Advocate form July to October for Katie Benedict, a scholar in Jane A. Post's class. I enclosed 8 cents for the paper which is the price of eight month's subscription. George called before meeting time and took the letter I wrote for him to E.C. Andrews and mailed it as we went to meeting. Bell was there to go home with him after meeting. 08/21 Monday - Cloudy and smoky in the morning, but it finally came off pleasant and very warm in the P.M. I worked as usual in the shop. After tea, I went in to the street and made arrangements with Parmalee & Bradley and Joseph Ives to put some sifters in their stores for sale. I took a letter from the Post Office for George from E.C. Andrews concerning sifters; also a circular for the collector of Internal Revenue Tax ( H. Hoyt) notifying me to pay my tax of $6.80. I started immediately up home to take the letter to George but found that he, Bell and Phebe Palmer who comes from Stamford today had gone downtown. I started back on a run and met them near Mr. Townsend's and made them go back home with me.. I there talked business with George and then he Bell and I went up into Father Griswold's barn garret where he stores his sifters and put the cranks on two dozen of them ready for Parmalee and Ives in the morning. They then went home and I at his request wrote an answer to Mr. Andrew's letter. Georgie did his first creeping this evening. 08/22 TUESDAY - A thunder shower last night about 1 o'clock and at the same time Abel Gregory's barn was burned near the northern extremity of Balmforth Avenue, supposed to have been set on fire. George took the train this morning for Bridgeport to make arrangements with Sterling & Peck for the sale of his sifters. He intends to visit Norwalk and Stamford on the same business before he returns. I went to the depot to see him off. He took a sample of his sifters with him. Joseph Ives came for one dozen sifters today. I called there this evening and got the pay - $12.00. I took about a peck of crab apples up to Fred Starr's market this evening for Fred Harrington. He is to call for them there. I did some trading and came down to Parmalee & Bradley's store and got my pay for the 12 quarts of crab apples which I left there to be sold. I received a letter from Carleton & Porter stating they would furnish "Longking's Questions" for $1.56 per dozen. I also took a letter from the office for George from Mr. Andrews. Burr Rockwell came to the shop today asking assistance from the Hatters. 08/23 WEDNESDAY - Clear and pleasant this morning and cool after the rain. I repaired one of George's flour sifters before breakfast. Parmalee & Bradley came for one dozen sifters today. I worked as usual in the shop. Theo Lyon came with me from the shop and (bought ?) 50 Russell Strawberry plants. I went into to the street in the evening and got my paper (the Jeffersonian), bought a garden trowel, went to class and walked up home after meeting with Robert Dunning. Elisha Serrine's baby was buried this P.M. at 2 o'clock. Gussie bought another barrel of charcoal. Mr. Lynes sent $1.25 for a sifter which he bought of George. Phebe Palmer and bell came down this evening bur went home before I returned from class. Before going into the street this evening, I carried a sifter over to Alex Pine's for his wife to try. 08/24 THURSDAY - Cold this morning; some say there was a little frost. I worked all day in the shop. Oscar Serrine came for some strawberry plants as he came from work. Bell came down at noon for Gussie to go up home and spend the P.M. She went and cousin Phebe came home with her at night to stay. I ate some bread and milk for supper and then went to market. I called at Henry Hoyt's office and paid $6.80 Income tax. I also went to the depot to meet George, but he did not come. He has doubtless not been able to complete his business regarding the sifters in the lower part of the county. 08/25 FRIDAY - pleasant and a little warmer. Phebe stayed with us last night. I worked as usual in the shop. George came home on the morning train. Edwin Harris brought me some Trompe De grand strawberry plants at the shop today. I brought them home and transferred then before tea. After tea, I dressed up a little and went into the street with cousin Phebe. Gussie did not go, she having been to the cemetery and was too tired. George and Bell came down in the evening and Phebe went home with them. 08/26 SATURDAY - Pleasant and I think a little warmer than yesterday. I went to the shop but on account of the facers not having hats enough ahead we only got one dozen which I finished before dinner. Theo Lyon came home by way of my house and bought a sifter. I have to give him some strawberry plants for buying a sifter. I brought my dinner home with me and ate it with Gussie at the table. Ed Harrington paid me for the sifter he bought several days ago. I went up home about 2 o'clock and George came down with me. Phebe and Bell came down a short time afterword. George and I went into the street. He mailed a letter to John Brayman about canvassing for the sifter. He gave a letter to Ed Barnum to be thrown off at Maria and Carrie Neil's boarding place. He then walked with me down to the shop and I got my pay. I bought a new gold pen, price - $1.15. I sold my old one and got 90 cents for it. Oscar Serrine came for some strawberry plants before tea. George, Phebe and Bell were with us to tea. I went to market in the evening in company with George. When we returned we ate a watermelon which I got in Father Griswold's patch. We enjoyed the evening very much. They went home a little before 10 o'clock. Before retiring, I drew up a bill of prices for the shop, adopted on the 16th instant. 08/27 SUNDAY - Pleasant. Gussie attended church as usual in the morning. Phebe came home with her at noon and I went down to Sunday School. Brother Hill preached in the morning, but on account of a head cold could not preach in the P.M. and consequently there was no service in the afternoon. After the Sunday School session, I came home walking up with David Bradley after going with him across to Barnum's Hotel to get a paper of tobacco. Georgie tumbled out of bed this morning while we were at breakfast. This is the first time it has happened to him. He is just 9 months and 11 days old today. Phebe was with us to tea. After tea, she and Gussie went up home to prayer meeting. George and Bell came back with them at evening meeting time. Gussie stayed with baby and I went with them to prayer meeting mailing as I went a letter to Carleton & Porter ordering another copy of the Sunday School Advocate for a Sunday School scholar for July to October. After meeting, Phebe, George and Bell came home with me to get some paper curtains they bought yesterday for Mother and left by mistake at my house. I fixed a pitcher of cold coffee with milk and sugar which we drank before they went home. 08/28 MONDAY - I rose feeling nearly down sick this morning, having a bowel complaint. George called just as we finished our breakfast., he having been down at Mr. Judd's to get his horse but it was not at home. As I went to work I carried Father Griswold's clock down to Mr. Robinson's store for repairs. I worked until after 6 o'clock in the shop. George started for Ridgefield about 4 P.M. with a load of sifters to peddle out. He took cousin Phebe and Bell as far as Uncle Edwin's. After tea, I went into the street and did some marketing and then attended the Annual School meeting of our district. B F. Ashley was elected clerk and James Taylor, Isaac Smith and Ezra Mallory for committee, Ephraim Gregory for collector, Henry Williams for treasure. 08/29 TUESDAY - Pleasant. Father and Mother Griswold and Fanny started this morning for Ohio. I worked as usual in the shop. Considerable talk today among the hatters about the reported combination of the bosses, an arrangement entered into by some of them determining not to pay any more advances to the workmen and agreeing not to shop any man who is on a turnout for prices at any other shop. Gussie received a letter from Ellen Dare with the balance of money due for dying a dress some time ago which Gussie paid for her. I went to market in the evening. George came home about 9 o'clock in the evening from a trip to Ridgefield selling sifters. Before retiring, we sealed up cups of Crabapple jelly. 08/30 WEDNESDAY - Warmer today. I worked as usual in the shop. Gussie called at Daniel Starr's this P.M. and stayed to tea. I marked Fido's collar before tea. While splitting kindling this evening, a piece hit my eye and hurt it. I went to market in the evening. 08/31 THURSDAY - Pleasant and warmer than yesterday. Muggy in the morning and appearing like rain but by the middle of the forenoon, the sun comes out hot. We being so close onto the facers at the shop, we could get only one dozen today. I finished mine at noon and came home. I met George with Mr. Judd's horse before I got home. I rode down with him to Mr. Judd's store to take the team home and then he came home with me. We talked over the matter of putting the price of the sifters up again to $1.50 instead of $1.25 as he has been for a few days selling them. Noah Hoyt came while we were talking about it for a # dozen. He let him have them and rode down with him to notify Parmalee & Bradley, Joseph Ives, and Randall that they must sell them at $1.50. Harriet and Louise Jones came to tea and spent the evening. Mr. Jabine and friend Potter came in the evening and went home with Louise to Mr. Jabine's. I bought a baby carriage of Elisha Serrine and put Georgie in it and went up home to come down with George who was also with us to tea.
Western Connecticut State University
Purdy, Horace, 1835-1909. “Horace Purdy Journal August 1865 Entry.” Horace Purdy Journals, MS 044. WCSU Archives, 9 July 2019. Accessed on the Web: 17 Jan. 2020.
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