Picking (and Eating) Strawberries

17-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today: 

Monday, June 10, 1912: This morning I picked berries and helped myself to some. I wonder if anyone saw me. I want Ruth to help me with a jigger to-night, but I guess she doesn’t have the inclination to.

Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

I always think that eating strawberries is half the fun of picking them—but perhaps Grandma was being paid by a neighbor to harvest them.  The previous year, on June 12, 1911, she wrote:

Started to pick strawberries this morning. Of course it will mean some early rising and loss of sleep, but just look at what I can earn.

I’m not sure what a jigger refers to in this entry, but one definition is a tool. Webster’s online dictionary mentions says that a jigger is a “small pointed metal instrument, resembling sharpened pencil, used in assembling ribs of expansion metal watch bands.” I don’t know if metal watchbands existed a hundred years ago, but if they did I can picture that Grandma may have had a watchband that needed adjustment.

12 thoughts on “Picking (and Eating) Strawberries

  1. Lots of other definitions of a jigger on wikipedia, but none of them stand out as something likely for your Helena to be needing help with, unless she got bitten by a flea while picking the strawberries :)

  2. My first thought if jigger, from vague memories of my grandparents would be to help on fixing or using a devise that shook (jiggled) some foodstuff — but dinna make sense with strawberries. — but then I really dinna know — just adding my 2 cents worth.

    1. Interesting that you have a vague memory of your grandparents actually using this term. It makes more sense to me than in relation to fixing watchbands.

  3. Finally remembered where I’d heard the term “jigger”… family story about using the “jigger” on the railway track which passed their house…A hand pumped sort of cart… Promise not to obsess over this one :-)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s