Did an Errand for Sister

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

Wednesday, February 11, 1914:  Spent the afternoon doing some walking. One of Ruthie’s important errands.

Did Grandma walk to McEwensville?

Did Grandma walk to McEwensville?

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

What errand did Grandma run for her sister Ruth? . . . shopping? . . . returning a borrowed item? . . .

Ruth was a teacher at a one-room school house near McEwensville, so she probably was at work—and needed her sister (who worked at home on the farm) to run the errand.

13 Responses

  1. Grandma’s sentence about Ruthie’s “important” errand almost has a ring of sarcasm….?

  2. I detected sarcasm, too–you can never tell with sisters!

  3. It makes me wonder, too. Wish Grandma had told us what the errand was, but I suppose she didn’t realize there would be so many curious people reading her diary 100 years later. When I was little, my mother told me many times to never write anything that I wouldn’t want the whole world to read. Wondering if Grandma got similar advice from her mother.

  4. Grandma is sure tight-lipped. I want to know more!

    • At the time, it probably seemed obvious to Grandma what the errand had been–and not worth the effort of jotting details down.

      • It’s interesting–the difference between diaries/journals of today, and those of 100 years ago.

        Of course that was nearly two generations before Anne Frank, who changed the motivation for keeping a diary, for the next generations. It became about exploring one’s own inner life. I wonder what motivated people like Grandma (yours and mine, who wrote the same kind of detail-free notation) to make a record of days.

  5. Love that photo of McEwensville! I’m with Tracy! I want details, Grandma!!! :-)

  6. or was there a little sarcasm in the word “important?”

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