17th Birthday

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

Thursday, March 21, 1912: On the first day of spring the ground is white with snow. My seventeenth birthday dawned this morning. Tried to make the most of it. I received two presents. I am staying up later this evening to study longer, also want to see the passing of my birthday.

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

Happy Birthday, Grandma!

The previous year when Grandma turned 16, she wrote:

I hereby truthfully resolve to be a better and more useful girl in the future than I have been in the past, and may this birthday resolution never be broken.

I sign myself,

Helena Muffly,

Mar. 21, 1911

I wonder if Grandma remembered her resolution—and if she felt like she’d kept it over the course of the year.

3 thoughts on “17th Birthday

    1. I often wonder how she’d feel if she knew we were all reading her diary a hundred years later. Based on what the girl in the diary was like, I think that she’d find it humorous that we care about her mundane life–yet be pleased.

      Based on what the elderly Grandmother that I remember was like, I think that she’d just smile but at the same time feel a little proud that someone cared about her life.

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