Photo Supplies Arrived

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

Monday, June 15, 1914:  My photo supplies came this morning. Hope to make some presentable pictures now. Am very tired for I was working for wages today.

DSC08259.crop aPhoto source: An advertisement for the Kodak Film Tank that appeared in the August 1913 issue of Farm Journal. You can see the entire advertisement in this previous post:

1913 Kodak Film Tank Advertisement

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

Grandma—

It’s awesome that your photo supplies arrived. You’ve mentioned taking and developing pictures several times over the past year or so. What a fun and rewarding hobby!

____

Apparently strawberries were in season. Throughout the diary she got paid for picking a neighbor’s strawberries each June. For example, in 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.

June 12, 1911

Wedding Decorations a Hundred Years Ago

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

Sunday, June 14, 1914:  Heard the details of a rather unusual wedding, which took place this morning. Lots of people went that weren’t invited. Ruth was one.

Attended church this afternoon. A supply preacher was there for the afternoon. He could make his eyes flash.

Photo Source: Ladies Home Journal (October, 1914)

Photo Source: Ladies Home Journal (October, 1914)

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

Hmm. . . Sunday morning seems like an odd time for a wedding. Why would people crash it?. . . Were the bride and groom very popular and friends of many of the young people? . . . Was there an awesome reception? . . . What were the wedding decorations like?

I wonder if Grandma’s sister Ruth kept a diary. If would be fun to read what she wrote about this unusual wedding.

1914-10-37 c

1914-10-37 a

1914-10-37 f

Bride’s bouquet with Bible or prayer book

1914-10-37 d

Bride’s maid’s bouquet

1914-10-37 e

___

What did Grandma mean when she said that the substitute pastor made his eyes flash? Was he preaching about hell, fire and brimstone?

In Pain Over Piano Lesson

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

Friday, June 12, 1914: My music teacher had a pain this morning. Must have sympathized deeply for her, since by the time she was ready to go I had one too.

Besse went home this afternoon. Miss her some.

piano.keys

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

Hmm. . . Has Grandma been practicing her piano lessons? Maybe her music teacher (and eventually Grandma) were in pain because of how poorly the lesson went.

Grandma might not be spending much time practicing. I don’t think that she mentioned her piano lessons since January.

Besse

Grandma’s married sister Besse came to visit June 9. It sounds like a fun and relaxing time for both sisters. It probably was just what Besse needed after the recent death of her infant daughter. . . and Grandma sounds like she enjoyed having her oldest sister around for a few days.

Learning to Tat

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

Thursday, June 11, 1914:  Besse was trying to teach me tatting today. Am awful stupid about it, but still I persist in trying to make the stuff. It takes some patience.tatted handkerchief

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

Grandma’s married sister Besse was visiting for a few days. Even if it was it was difficult to learn how to make tatted lace, it sounds like a fun activity for the two sisters.

I’ve often wished that I knew how to tat, but it seems almost like a lost art. I remember seeing beautiful tatted doilies and handkerchiefs when I was a child—but both seem to have vanished from modern households.

According to Wikipedia:

A tatting shuttle facilitates tatting by holding a length of wound thread and guiding it through loops to make the requisite knots.

To make the lace, the tatter wraps the thread around one hand and manipulates the shuttle with the other hand.

Tatting Shuttles (Photo source: Wikipedia)

Tatting Shuttles (Photo source: Wikipedia)

Cousins from up the Creek Came to Visit

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

Wednesday, June 10, 1914: Had company this afternoon. They were my cousins from up the creek.

DSC02302

This picture of Warrior Run Creek was taken from the bridge in McEwensville.

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

Hmm. . . I have no idea who these cousins were. Warrior Run Creek flows through the Muffly farm. Going upstream from the farm, it flows through McEwensville, through the Warrior Run High School property, and then up into the Muncy Hills where it originates. (Downstream it flows into the West Branch of the Susquehanna River south of Watsontown).

I don’t know of any aunts or uncles (who would have been the parents of the cousins) who lived near the creek.   But, Grandma’s mother had 7 siblings and her father had 10. I have no idea where some of them lived.

It seems odd that Grandma refers to these cousins by where they lived along the creek. Warrior Run Creek is too small to be navigable, so the cousins would have come via a road. If I were describing where the cousins lived I think that I would have listed the town  (or perhaps a landmark like a church) that they lived near.

High and Low Tempertures in US Cities, June 8, 1914

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

Monday, June 8, 1914:  Guess most any kind of a person would imagine what I did today. If I could have kept cool, I would have called that something accomplished, but that was out of the question.

Temperatures in selected US cities, June 8, 1914 (Source: Washington Post, June 9, 1914)

Temperatures in selected US cities, June 8, 1914 (Source: Washington Post, June 9, 1914)

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

Grandma-

Whew, it sounds hot. Hope you didn’t have to help with any work out in the fields.

Did you try fanning yourself with a hand fan? . . . or sitting in the shade with a glass of lemonade?

According the June 9, 1914 issue of the Washington Post, the high on June 8 was 92 in Pittsburgh and 94 in Philadelphia—so it probably was also in the low 90s in central Pennsylvania.

Former Pastor Preached Sermon

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

Sunday, June 7, 1914:  Our former pastor was back to preach this morning. Went for a walk this afternoon.

Photo Source: The Monday Heretic

Photo Source: The Monday Heretic

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

Grandma attended the Baptist Church in McEwensville. The church hadn’t had a minister since early January—so it must have been a real treat to have a visit from the former pastor.

On January 4, 1914 Grandma wrote:

Our minister is going to leave soon. He preached his farewell sermon today. I am so sorry to see him go. There were some misty eyes in church this afternoon.

And, on March 29, 1914, she wrote:

Went to Sunday school this afternoon. Attended church, which isn’t very often since we don’t have a regular preacher as yet. . .

And, in the weeks since then she only mentioned going to Sunday School, so the church probably still did not have a new minister.

The McEwensville Baptist Church is long gone. It probably shuttered its doors sometime during the 1920s. A hundred years ago there were many more small churches in rural hamlets than there are now. Many struggled financial and found it difficult to keep a minister because they were unable to pay very much.

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