Went Shopping in Milton

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

Thursday, June 22, 1911: Mother and I went to Milton this morning. I got a dress and a pair of shoes and some other accessories. Mother was so fatigued when we got home, but I was far from that.

Old postcard showing corner of Broadway and Front Street, Milton (Source: Milton Historical Society)

Recent photo of the corner of Broadway and Front Street, Milton

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

See the May 2 entry for a 1911 advertisement and photo from a shoe store in Milton.

Didn’t Go Shopping

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

Thursday, June 15, 1911: Wanted to go to Milton today and get some things to wear but mommie wouldn’t go.

Old real picture post card of Milton--Grandma wanted to shop here a hundred years ago today, but she didn't make it. (Postcard source: Milton Historical Society)

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

Since Grandma mentioned several times in previous diary entries that she went to Milton by herself, I’m surprised that she didn’t just go alone when her mother won’t go. I suppose that her mother would only pay for whatever Grandma wanted to buy (clothes?) if she went along.

Carpenters and Circus Recap

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

Friday, June 2, 1911: I would like to rub up an acquaintance with one of the young carpenters. There are two of ‘em, but seems an impossibility. Dear, dear me.

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

I’m really struggling with our age difference today. My grandmother was about 40 years younger than what I currently am when  she wrote this entry. A hundred years ago she was a teen jotting down her thoughts about cool guys who were helping build the addition on the Muffly barn—while I’m a mother with adult children.

I’m just going to let this entry stand without any comments—and instead will go back to yesterday’s entry about the circus in Milton. I would like to share two articles in the June 2, 1911 issue of the Milton Evening Standard:

The Circus

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

Tuesday, June 1, 1911:

Of all the months, my favorite is

The radiant glorious month of June.

How many are the joys it brings,

And also tells that the year is noon.

Every cloud has a silver lining. Ruth and I went to the circus, accompanied by Miss R. O. You see my darling sister sometimes changes her mind for the better. I though the circus was great even if you did blow 60 cents.

Article in June 1, 1911 issue of the Milton Evening Standard.

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

Yeah! I’m glad that Grandma was able to go to the circus after all. R.O. refers to Rachel Oakes—a friend of Grandma and her sister.

The circus came to Milton on the train. There then was a parade as the entertainers, the animals, and their equipment went through town to the fairground (where the actual circus was held).

Recent photo of railroad tracks and an old railroad station building. A hundred years ago today, the circus train probably sat on a siding here--and the parade would have begun in this area.

The parade apparently was awesome and the focus of the front page story in the June 1, 1911 edition of the Milton Evening Standard.

Somewhat surprisingly there don’t seem to be photos of the actual circus in either the June 1 or June 2 issue of the paper. I suppose the paper “went to bed” too early for photos on June 1—though I’m not sure why there were none on June 2. Maybe newspaper photographers weren’t allowed under the big tent to help encourage people to buy tickets and attend the circus rather than just viewing it vicariously by reading the newspaper.

It sounds like Grandma enjoyed the circus—though she doesn’t seem ecstatic about it since she mentions blowing 60 cents. She seems to doing some sort of cost-benefit analysis in her head—and almost wishing that she still had the 60 cents.

Sixty cents  in 1911 dollars would be about $17 in 2011. A dollar today is worth about 1/28th what it was worth a hundred years ago. In other words, there has been an average annual inflation rate of 3.4% per year over the past hundred years.

The Circus is Coming! But May Not Go :(

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

Wednesday, May 31, 1911: Was so very disappointed this evening. Ruth said she was not going to the circus which is to be held this month at the Milton fairground, and I intended to go if she would go.

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

Ad in May 27, 1911 issue of Milton Evening Standard

Riverside Park

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

Saturday, May 27, 1911: Went to Watsontown this morning, and up to McEwensville this afternoon. Oh the countless errands I have to perform keeps me rather busy. Ruth went to Riverside park.

Source of old Riverside Park postcards: Milton Historical Society

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

A hundred years ago today, it sounds as if Grandma’s sister Ruth had all the fun—and Grandma had all of the work. I wonder if Ruth got home in time to help milk the cows—or if Grandma had to do it by herself.

Riverside Park

When Grandma was young, Riverside Park was the center of the summer social scene.

A trolley ran between Watsontown and Milton. According to Robert Swope, Jr.”

The line passed through a popular recreational park called Riverside Park just south of Watsontown. The park had amusements, swimming, boating and romantic scenery.

 Robert Swope, Jr. in Watsontown, McEwensville, and Delaware Township: A Real Photo Postcard History

The park was only open during the summer months—and probably had just opened for the season. An article in the Watsontown Star and Record from three years later describes the park opening.

Watsontown Star and Record, May 15, 1914 (Source: Montgomery House Library)

Riverside Park was located near the current location of Fort Boone Campsites.

Running Errands

When I was growing up on a farm, after I got my driver’s license,  I remember clearly how farm machinery broke with maddening frequency—and how I’d be sent on errands to buy the needed parts. In Grandma’s day, farm machinery wouldn’t have been nearly as mechanized, but maybe repairs still needed to be purchased—or maybe the errands were totally unrelated to machinery repairs. . .

No Dentist (Again), So Onward to the Bijou Dream Theater

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

Saturday, May 13, 1911: I went to Milton this afternoon to get my teeth filled, but it happened to be a wild goose chase, for he wasn’t there. I walked around town until I was tired, then went into Bijou Dream. I’m so very tired now. Oh, dear.

Advertising Ruler from Bijou Dream Theater (Source: Milton Historical Society)

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

Grandma’s not having much luck getting her tooth filled. This is the second time that she went to Milton to see the dentist, but he wasn’t there (see the May 6 entry); and she’s been complaining on and off about a toothache since mid-April (see April 11, April 15, and April 18 entries). I can’t imagine this kind of delay in treating a toothache today—I guess some things are definitely better now.

But at least Grandma got to go to the movies at the Bijou Dream two Saturday’s in a row.  The  previous week when she tried unsuccessfully to go to the dentist was also a Saturday—and that time she also ended up going to the Bijou Dream. Now that I think about it, I wonder if the fact that she kept trying to go to the dentist on a Saturday was at least part of the reason that she had difficulty finding him in his office.

Photo of Bijou Dream Theater in book called Milton 1909 that was published by the Milton Evening Standard (Source: Milton Historical Society).

George Venios has the photo of the Bijou Dream Theater in his book, Milton Chronicles and Legends. His caption says:

 The entrance to the Bijou Dream Theater, which was located on Broadway at the same site as the Capitol. It was a converted livery stable. On hot summer days, the unmistakable smell of the stable would return.

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