OCTOBER 01 FRIDAY - Pleasant and warm. I have used Harry Buckley's horse and Saul Barnum's wagon and been to Reuben Blackman's on top of the hill this side of and in view of Newtown and put in a spring bed. On my way over at Beaverbrook, I put one in for Eugene Jennings. From Newtown, I drove to Hawleyville and fed my horse, then through the village of Brookfield up to Lanesville where I put in a set of springs for Nelson Knowles that I have deferred since August 10th on account of smallpox at that place. I collected from James Knowles $3.00 balance due since that date for Cable & Purdy. I drove home in about an hour and a half from Lanesville, arriving about 6:30. I unharnessed and fed the horse again in Nelson Knowles' stable before starting for home. After tea, I went over to Aug. Kenner's and put in his springs which I delivered yesterday while they were at the fair in Norwalk. OCTOBER 02 SATURDAY - Lowery early in the morning. Pleasant in the middle of the day. Towards night, it clouded over and a little fine rain for a few moments. Clear and pleasant again in the evening. In the forenoon, I went up to E. S. Davis to get my model box repaired. I called at Mr. Crofut's shop and left the key to my drawer under my bench for Joe Kyle to take charge of in my absence. After dinner, I put a safety bar in Charlie's bedstead. I then went up to Benjamin Morris' to see a wreath they want to get preserved but found no one home. I came home and picked my pears and pulled my carrots. In the evening, I went into the street. I saw Joel Foster at the Caucus. He paid me $2.28 balance due on springs. I bought 2 quarts of sweet potatoes and came home. OCTOBER 03 SUNDAY - It has rained hard all day. None of us has been to church. It stopped raining just at night when Gussie went up on Deer Hill to Father's. She brought home a piece of mosquito netting that George wrote to have us bring down to him on Wednesday when we go to New York. OCTOBER 04 MONDAY - It commenced raining again about 2 o'clock this morning and rained very hard and steady until about 2 P.M. when it stopped and the sun came out. It being Town Meeting Day, I went down in the forenoon and voted. I ordered 400 labels printed with the name 'Horace' printed on to paste over 'Hill' on my spring bed posters to make it read Horace Purdy instead of Hill & Purdy, Agents for New London and Windham Counties. In the P.M., I went down for them and in the P.M. and evening I pasted them on. Gussie went to market while I stayed home in the evening. Before retiring, I wrote to Twitchell that I expected to be in New Haven on Thursday morning when I would see him. After writing, I went over to Horace Cable's to carry a pair of sockets and screws for a spring bed for him to put into H. M. Senior's bed for a safety bar. It being about 10 o'clock, he was in bed. I did not disturb him but put them on the door sill so that he would see them when he opened the door in the morning. OCTOBER 05 TUESDAY - Pleasant but cool. In the morning, I took the train for Bethel and then collected from Adam C. Williams and A. Chichester pay for spring beds and then rode back to Danbury with the Col. (Chichester). I collected $6.50 from Mrs. Ford and $3.50 from Anna Eastwood leaving $3.00. After dinner, I rode over to the Fair Grounds with Harry Buckley to see Eugene Jennings about pay for a bed I put I for him. He promised to leave the $7.25 in Chichester's Store in White Street this evening. We then rode up to L. C. Fanton's to the cider mill. I collected $6.00 from him from Cable & Purdy. I took my black vest over to have Mrs. Cocking put in two watch pockets. I picked my sweet apples just at night. Bell being down here, she helped me carry them upstairs. I went into the street in the evening. Charles Hayes gave me a check for $25.00 for his last month's board. I got William G. Randall to cash it for me as Gussie wants to use the money in the morning to go away with. Before retiring, we packed a trunk and bags for going away in the morning. OCTOBER 06 WEDNESDAY - Started for New London and Windham Counties to see the Connecticut Spring Beds for Thomas E. Twitchell in New Haven. Gussie and Georgie with Louise Vintz started with me via New York. We took the steamboat 'Nelly White' from Norwalk; arrive in New York at the foot of Market Street about 11 o'clock. We all went to the St. Charles Hotel corner of Bleeker Street and Broadway to dinner. From there, we went to Central Park and spent the P.M. This was Louise's and my first visit to the park. We went from the Park to William Hayes, 415 Hudson Street to tea. I called as I went at 61 Carmine Street to see Henry Day but got no satisfaction about payment of his notes. We had a pleasant time at William's to tea, after which he went with us to Peck Slip to take the steamer 'Elm City' for New Haven, the same that the 1st Connecticut Volunteers took from New York to New haven in 1861 when we returned from the three months campaign at Bull Run at the commencement of the late Southern Rebellion. George met me at the steamer and gave me $5.00 on account towards picture frames at Yonkers and at Ferguson's at No. 10 grove Street, which he sold for me when I was in business in New York. The steamer left at 11 P.M. OCTOBER 07 THURSDAY - The steamer arrived with us at New Haven at 4:15 this morning. We took a hack to E. B. Stevens at 92 Ward Street and took breakfast with him and Harriet. I soon went to 95 Orange Street at the corner of Chapel to see Mr. Twitchell. Mr. D. R. French, his old general agent for the beds was there. I paid Mr. Twitchell his last bill for beds, $29.00. I took the 10:45 train for New London. Gussie and Georgie took a train at the same time for Collinsville. I arrived in New London about 1 P.M. I took board at 28 ## State Street with a Mr. M. Moore who keeps a large but good boarding house. OCTOBER 08 FRIDAY - I spent the day in surveying my field of operations, putting up posters and showing my model. OCTOBER 09 SATURDAY - I canvassed for the beds. Saw the assistant assessor about a license. He says because I deliver the beds, it puts me down as a peddler and I must have a license. In the evening, I met Frank Trowbridge on State Street. I took a walk with him about the city and went to the 'Metropolitan', his hotel where I Left him and repaired to my boarding house. OCTOBER 10 SUNDAY - Pleasant in the morning. After breakfast, Frank Trowbridge and I had a man to row us across the Thames to Groton where we visited the tower erected in Memory of the massacre perpetrated by the traitor, Arnold, during our war with England, or rather in memory of the gallant dead who there fell in defense of Fort Griswold. We ascended to the top by means of winding stone stairs where we had a splendid view of New London and the Thames river above and below to its mouth. We visited old Fort Griswold and then returned to the city. After dinner, I went with Mr. E. S. Simpson, an old gentleman of about 60 years formerly of Danbury who boards with me at Moore's and visited Fort Trumble, a new work erected I believe about 15 years ago. It commenced raining before we returned and continued all evening. OCTOBER 11 MONDAY - Pleasant this morning. I have canvassed for the bed with a little more success today. OCTOBER 12 TUESDAY - Canvassed as usual for the bed. During the day, I visited Bosses Cracker Bakery on Water Street, also a Horse Nail Factory. In the evening, I called on a man in John Street about bed springs. I then took a walk with Mr. Simpson. OCTOBER 13 WEDNESDAY - A cold Morning. Canvassed as usual. Received a letter from Mr. Twitchell stating that upon consultation with the Internal Revenue Assessor in New Haven, I am required to take out a license to sell the spring beds upon the grounds that delivering them as I do, makes me a 4th class peddler subject to a $10.00 license. OCTOBER 14 THURSDAY - A little rain last evening. Pleasant and a little warmer today. Canvassed but took no orders. OCTOBER 15 FRIDAY - Canvassed, but took not an order. It commenced raining in the evening. OCTOBER 16 SATURDAY - It rained all last night and this morning. It cleared away in the P.M. About 3 P.M., I took the ferry boat and went over to Groton and took an order from Mr. Budington and Mr. Kearns. Windy and cool. OCTOBER 17 SUNDAY - Attended M. E. Sunday School on Federal Street from 10:30 to noon. After dinner, I wrote to Gussie in Canton. Mr. E. S. Simpson, an old gentleman, a printer boarding where I do, went with me to M. E. Church in the evening. After meeting, we took a walk around the city awhile before retiring. OCTOBER 18 MONDAY - In the forenoon, I went to R. E. Burrow's Carpenter Shop, No. 2 Kellam Street and prepared a set of half circle blocks for Stephen Budington's round nail bedstead. I did but little canvassing and took no orders. I found one Henry M. Lester, a shoe dealer at No. 10 Main Street who has one of my pattern bedsprings which he bought in Boston during the Great Peace Jubilee last June; he likes it very much. OCTOBER 19 TUESDAY - A cool day. I canvassed in the forenoon. AT 2 P.M., John H. Sloan, son of Mrs. Moore, was buried. A Mr. Gomley, an Englishman boarding where I do hired a team with me and we rode in the procession. After the funeral, I went over to the Kerse Nail Factory and took 3 orders for bed springs. I went also to the tannery but sold none there. I went in the evening with Mr. Simson to the printing office and finally retired with the headache. OCTOBER 20 WEDNESDAY - The coldest day we have yet had. A heavy white frost and ice thick as glass. I wrote to Mr. Twitchell for a cut of the bed springs to use in printing 5,000 circulars I am about to have done. OCTOBER 21 THURSDAY - Received a letter from Mr. Twitchell saying that he yesterday shipped 8 beds to me. Received another after dinner in reply to one asking for a cut of the bed. OCTOBER 23 FRIDAY - Pleasant and warmer. I was disappointed in not finding my 8 beds at the depot this morning. In the P.M., I visited the New London Boiler and Engine Works. I then crossed over the New London and Northern Railroad Bridge over the cove to what they call the 'Neck' to canvass for my beds. OCTOBER 23 SATURDAY - After breakfast, I employed an expressman to deliver my beds (they are my first in New London). Three of them were for Groton ' for Budington Kearns, and Morgan. After dinner, it commenced raining and continued all the remainder of the day and evening. I got my beds all put in before night except for Mr. Crump's and he was not ready as he is moving and will not be settled for 2 or 3 days. OCTOBER 24 SUNDAY - Pleasant but cool. I attended Father Whitney's preaching in the P.M. at the Bethel ___. OCTOBER 25 MONDAY - Pleasant. Shoes mended at A. Stanley Smith, 54 State Street, and my headquarters for the bed springs. Called on my customers to see how the beds suited. Went to Groton in the P.M. to get B. Ellison's order. I wrote to Mr. Twitchell in the evening, ordering 10 more beds and enclosed a check for $30.05, the amount of the last bill for beds. I received the bed cut by express. OCTOBER 26 TUESDAY - Went down to the Pequot House ( a summer resort near the mouth of the Thames) to see if I could arrange to put in spring beds for it next spring. Canvassing on my way back without any knowledge of the place, I got into a house of bad repute which I afterward learned was known as the Cottage by the Sea'. As soon as I saw the character of the place, I told short stories and retreated. I got 12 dozen cards, 8 ## x 12 with 'Orders for the Connecticut Spring Bed Received here' printed on them. I put one of them in A. Stanley Smith's Store Window at 54 State Street. I deposited in the Union Bank, $30.05 to meet the check I sent to Mr. Twitchell. OCTOBER 27 WEDNESDAY - First snowstorm. It snowed nearly all the forenoon quite hard making about 2 inches of snow. I looked after printing 5,000 circulars at Starr & Farnum's, corner of Main and State Streets. I took 3 bed spring orders before noon. In the evening, I folded, wrote across the ends and filed away in a bill holder a lot of bills for A. Stanley Smith at his store. I then went down to Blinman Street with Mr. Simpson and helped him put up a bedstead preparatory to the arrival of his wife from New Jersey whom he expects tonight by New York steamer. I sat up with him until the arrival of the steamer at midnight to meet his wife. She came. I then left him to return to my boarding place at Mr. Moore's for the night. OCTOBER 28 THURSDAY - Cloudy and cold. I took and order for bed from D. B. Thurston, 56 Bank Street, ex-Governor of Rhode Island. I took 1,000 of the 5,000 circulars ordered from Starr & Farnum. I telegraphed to J. E. Chapman, 177 Grand Street not to send the large bed cut. I sent by mail a sample of my new circular to Mr. Twitchell. OCTOBER 29 FRIDAY - Warmer. I took 11 spring beds for the depot this morning, delivered and put them up before night. It commenced raining before night. I put in one for A. Stanley Smith and took tea with him. I wrote to T. E. Twitchell in the evening and enclosed a check for $41. 14 for the last lot of beds and enclosed the bill to be receipted. OCTOBER 30 SATURDAY - A little sunshine though cold and most of the day cloudy. I deposited in the Union Bank, $41.14 to meet check with. I canvassed a part of the day. I spent the evening in A. Stanley Smith's Shoe Store, writing for myself and helping him wait on customers. OCTOBER 31 SUNDAY - Pleasant but cool. A fire alarm last night at 1:30 o'clock. I turned out to see what I could, but the fire was extinguished so soon that no light was seen. I understood that it was in the Wilson Manufacturing Company, a foundry and iron-working establishment. This P.M., I attended M. E. Church. We had an excellent sermon from Mr. Cooper from Westerly Rhode Island, formerly preached here in New London. He preached another good one this evening. A young lady sat in the seat with me and offered me part of her hymn book. I accepted and sang with her. After dinner, I called on Mr. Simson in Blinman Street.
Purdy, Horace, 1835-1909. “Horace Purdy Journal October 1869 Entry.” Horace Purdy Journals, MS 044. WCSU Archives, 9 July 2019. Accessed on the Web: 29 Jan. 2020.
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