Excerpts from the 1864–1871 Diaries appeared in the March, 1978 issue of Gleanings.
Family members referred to in the writings of William Lambie are:
FRANCIS L. LAMBIE, born March 22, 1794 in Avondale, near Strathaven, Scotland. His wife, MARY HAMILTON LAMBIE, born February 20, 1796 in Strathaven, Scotland. Their nine children were all born in Strathaven.
Their eldest son is WILLIAM LAMBIE, born April 21, 1821.
His sister, AGNES LAMBIE, born February 26, 1828, married RICHARD, INGLIS, M.D. and lived in Detroit.
ROBERT LAMBIE, born October 26, 1822, married EUNIE WHITE MORTON in Ypsilanti. He was a tailor and merchant.
FRANCIS (FRANK) LAMBIE born August 12, 1824, married ANNE Mc-MILLIN in Detroit.
ISABELL LAMBIE, born June 6, 1826 and married WILLIAM TODD and lived in the Oak (Royal Oak).
JAMES LAMBIE, born June 17, 1830, was a business man in Windsor Ontario, Canada.
JOHN LAMBIE, born September 6, 1836 and was a tailor with his brother Robert.
WILLIAM LAMBIE married MARY CAMPBELL, oldest daughter of Robert and Anne Muir Campbell. They moved into a very small drafty house in Superior Township on Clark Road in 1849.
Their six children were:
Anna, Mary, Frank, Elizabeth, Belle and Robert.
Anna and Mary never married. Frank married late in life and had no children.
Belle married William Scotney and there were no children.
Elizabeth married Azro Fletcher whose father was Franklin J. Fletcher. Charles and Rolland Fletcher were his uncles.
Elizabeth's uncles were William, Gabriel, Robert, Andrew, James and John K.
Her Aunt Elizabeth Campbell married John Clark. They lived in Pittsfield Township and had no children.
January 1, 1872 A beautiful winter morning. My family gave me this book for a Christmas present. Mrs. Wm Campbell walked over here. Willie Campbell drew the wee wagon and Clare. Uncle William did not come. Frank took them home, slippy going.
January 2 Frank got shoes on the horse. Wife and Frank went to town. Elizabeth to Wm Campbells.
January 4 Wife and I went to Pittsfield (Clark's) stayed over night.
January 5 Anna and Mary went to a Church Social.
January 6 Dull winter morning. Frank got breakfast. Wife came back from Pittsfield and went back. Elizabeth's birthday. Frank bought a double gun and went to hunt with Jerome (Miller).
January 10 Three girls went to spelling school.
January 11 Frank went away with his new gun to hunt. Cut willows. Mr. Hall got 5 swarms of bees, one before, 2 for doctoring Frank and 2 for $9. Paid $5 down.
January 13 Anna and Mary went to Church meeting. Mrs. L came back from Pittsfield. The Paper Mill burnt.
January 20 Deep snow. Went to town in the sleigh. Attended the Farmers' Store meeting.
January 22 Wife, Robert and I went to Augusta, stayed over night. Went to the Campbell woods where he had great whitewood logs. Came home. 3 girls and Frank went to a party at Steven Voorhees.
January 23 Frank and 3 girls went to the Normal at night.
January 27 Anna and Eliza in bed at breakfast time. Went to the Farmers' Store meeting. Chidister elected Superintendent of the Farmers' Store by the directors.
February 1 1872 Clear cold morning. Went to see Mr. Fletcher. John Clarke came back from England. Wife and I went home with him. Over the Sea and back since husking.
February 3 Sent $5 for the Independent and a picture-1/2 to Willy Green for the Rurals. Prof. Darows and Mr. Goodwin died this week.
February 9 Wm Campbell, wife and Clare, wife and I want in the sleigh to Augusta. Nice time. Went to Mr. C's wood lot. Great trees.
February 12 Eliza went to school. James Lambie depressed in spirits. Went to the Depot with him.
February 14 Dismal cold dreary day. Went to J Miller's. Found party of Methodists feasting on Oysters and Turkey. Pleasant people.
February 15 Walked to town. Wm Campbell marked $10 for in-terest on Mr. Crane's note. Gave us receipt for $30 on our Shares in the Farmers' Store. Talked to Brother Robert about James indebtedness.
February 16 Frank and two girls went to the Normal school.
February 24 Wife, Robert and Mrs. Aulds went to Augusta.
February 26 Talked to Mr. Gray about buying 20 acres of his farm.
February 27 Went to Mrs. Goodwin's sale. John Clark and A. Campbell came. Bought a bedstead.
February 29 Last day of winter. Cleaned the stove pipe. Fed the cattle. Wife getting breakfast. Boys and girls in bed. Went to A. Campbells.
March 3 Sacrament Sabbath. Cold solemn day. No new converts to eternal life.
March 7 Smythe offered $40 for the spotted cow, better than Fletcher's offer of $25.
March 10 5 went to church. A collection to educate Ministers. I got no education in America.
March 11 Robert's birthday.
March 27 Went to Detroit. Called on sister Agnes, Mother, John and Frank. A sign across the road at James store— Bank-rupt Sale of Dry Goods.
March 29 Tried to have brother Frank make up peace with sister Agnes but failed.
April 4 Paid Priscilla Boyce $53 for teaching school.
April 9 Mary, Eliza, Frank and I went to Detroit. Frank and the girls stayed over night.
April 15 My birthday. Another year gone. Job wished he had never seen the light. With all my sadness, I look on life as a blessing. I hope this will be my best year. Anna began her school.
April 17 Frnak plowed and planted apple trees. Sowed peas and radishes. Got 2 pigs from T. Voorhees $2.50. The ____ Pox sore on my arm. Anna went to a concert.
May 6 25 lambs. Plowing for corn, planting potatoes. Mr. Campbell came and went to hire G. Frain. Grafted apple trees. Someone broke into the school and stole Anna's clock. Some more of my hard earnings gone.
May 15 David Inglis came and brough gladness with him. Bought some spoons. David had a happy time with our young folks and went home.
May 22 Mary's birthday. Wife and Wm Campbell went to Mrs. Hatfield's funeral. Wheat $2 a bushel.
May 27 G. Stephenson and us made a dam and washed his sheep and our before noon. 4 went to Mr. Clarks and 3 to school and I was left to cultivate alone.
May 31 Frank took down a load of corn and got a cultivator. Brothers Robert, Frank, their wives and little Eunie came. Pleasant time. Frank gave me none of my Father's inheritance.
June 1, 1872 Called on Mrs. Phillips and Wm Hiscock. I think he is passing away.
June 11 Letter from James wanting help.
June 12 The girls put new wallpaper and a carpet in the west room. The first time we ever had a new woolen carpet.
June 14 T. Spooncer and Vanaten would not come to shear sheep. Frank and I shore 11 and then the men sent word the man would come.
June 15 T. Spooncer and Vanaten shore 50 sheep. Paid them $5. Wool heavier than we ever had it. If the byers and our weights agree, it will average many lbs. The girls bought a croquet set $4.50.
June 19 Isabel's birthday.
June 20 Wife and 4 girls went to hear the Normal graduates. Frank and I dug a well.
June 22 Settled with Wm Campbell $21 in goods and $80 in money due us. Bought a large grindstone and pants from Brother Robert.
July 3 Swift wanted Frank to mow for him. All of us went to Anna's school picnic in Bennett's Woods.
August 24 Wife and 3 daughters went to the Church to bid Julia Bacon Goodby before she went sailing to India as a Missionary.
September 28 Frank's birthday.
October 1 Took 20 varieties of apples to the Ann Arbor Fair. Frank took 3 barrels apples to Robert, 15 bushels to Sears.
October 10 Sold 8 barrels apples to Bennett for $8. Sent 2 barrels to Dr. Inglis. Apples not so profitable as last year.
October 28 Frank and I went to Ann Arbor to see Barnum's Show.
October 31 Frank and I went to Detroit, Canada and the Oak. Grand visit. Frank stayed at the Oak. Sister Isabel a brave good woman.
November 20 Frank came back from the Oak. Anna's school ended today.
November 26 Took down the wool to Yost-348 lbs at 60¢-$208.80. 6 lbs for each sheep. Our weighing and Yost agreed. I had more wool and got more money that I expected, a thing that seldom happens. Happy to share my prosperity with my family. A beautiful prosperous day for me.
December 6 Killed a swine. 150 lbs and salted it down. Did not want to sell pork for 4¢ a lb.
December 20 Received $10 interest from Mr. Crane.
January 1, 1873 Wife, Robert and I, Wm Campbell, his wife and the 2 boys went in the sleigh to Augusta. Pleasant visit.
January 2 Frank took Anna to school. Mr. Goodspeed brought her home. Living on pork and pancakes.
January 24 4 of us went to visit A Campbell. Snow drifted in the lane and the horses had hard work to get thru. Mr. Campbell has a much better home and farm than mine, acquired in far less time. (on Platt Road in Pittsfield Township)
February 13 Walked to town. Wife went to Mr. Fletchers. Mr. Yost does not give satisfaction in the Farmers' Store. An account about our bees in the Tribune.
February 14 Mr. Goodspeed brought Anna home. Took 3 girls to a party at Mr. Camps.
February 16 Walked to Church. Had to cross the river on the ice. Mr. Dodge died.
February 17 Sold 6 dozen eggs at 28¢. Brother Robert has sold out his goods to Robbins and Sweet.
February 21 Took Anna to school. Bitter cold wind agoing against the blast. Frank came at night. Mary and Eliza went with him to the Normal.
March 8 At a full meeting of the Stockholders of the Farmers' Store, 80 voted in favor of Mr. Yost resigning as Superintendent and 6 or 8 in favor of his remaining. A full vote in favor of Wm Campbell.
March 11 Robert's birthday. Elizabeth took Mary to the Normal School. Liza and Mary went to the closing of Anna's school.
March 22 Robert got new boots again. Anna and Mary going to the Normal.
March 29 Brother Frank sent word about the death of James Lambie's wife.
March 31 Eliza went with the buggy to get the girls and missed them.
April 10 3 girls and Frank went to a sugar party.
April 15 My birthday. 52 years of my life spent. Have tried to do some good in a humble way but the hopes of my youth have been over clouded and great America seems to grant me none of its greatness-but goodness and mercy are better than great-ness.
April 21 Mr. Platt paid $20 interest on his note to Wm Campbell. A good lift to my purse.
June 13 Mr. Smith paid $15 for 5 fat wedders.
June 19 Heard of Samuel Campbell's death (Robert Campbell's brother). Wife went to Augusta.
June 20 Wife and I went to Belleville to Samuel Campbell's funeral. There was a great lamentation over him.
June 25 P. Vanaten raised the Barn about a foot. Came next day after the rain and raised the Barn 2 feet as he agreed. Paid him $15.
June 28 Frank mowed in the old orchard and broke his machine. I mowed by hand with a sythe.
July 18 Went to town. Paid Mr. Garrison seat rent $4.75 (church). Frank and Lizzy helping Voorhees.
July 21 Willie Campbell helped get in the wheat. Had to work hard.
July 28 Mr. and Mrs. Clark and R. Campbell came. Frank and Jerome cradled oats.
August 1 The colored man's jubilee.
August 16 Prof G. Campbell came and stayed overnight. John Campbell came. Frank went to Augusta for his mother. Went to hear a lecture about forming a Farmers' Grange. Got the buggy tires set $2.50.
September 1 Frank bought 5000 shingles and began to shingle the barn. He, Willie Campbell and Robert shingling all the south-side of the barn.
September 11 A great gathering of my wife's friends at Mr. Clarks. Anna and Mary went to Mr. Gales about the School. Wife and Robert went to her fathers next day with Mr. McConnichie.
September 28 Frank's birthday making him 19.
October 1 Found Mr. Campbell at the depot. He came up with us to dinner and we went to the Fair, wife and I, Anna, Eliza, Robert and Frank. A grand day. Beautiful–people, flowers, pictures and fruit. A day of recreation, pleasure.
October 8 Wife and I went to Augusta. Wm and Andrew and family came. Pleasant day. My friends appear to excel and pass me in the race of life.
October 10 Frank took 2 loads of apples to Bennett. 73 barrels in all. Brother Robert, wife and daughter came. Robert Campbell and wife came. Had a pleasant time and gather-ed apples.
October 15 Ainsworth (Ainsworth and Bennett) paid $100 check on apples. Robert got a new coat. Wife and Belle a pair of shoes.
October 16 Gathered apples in the nw orchard. Sister Isabel and her daughter Mary came. Brother Robert paid $5.25 for 3 barrels of apples. Mrs. Todd, wife and I went round by the old Moon farm and went to Brother Roberts for supper.
November 3 Frank took cider apples to Burt, about 68 bushels.
November 5 Robert and I went to Detroit to Mrs. Inglis and I went to Father's grave. Staid over night with Mother in Windsor. Her hair very white at 77 years. Sisters not in-dustrious.
November 16 24 years since wife and I were married. Time flys fast. Mary took Eliza to school.
November 27 Wm and Mrs. Campbell, Willie and Clare to dinner. They brought a turkey. The youngsters were happy sliding down the hill.
December 2 Robert went to school. Eliza went to the Normal. Isabel and Robert to the district school.
December 13 Anna's birthday.
December 25 Five years since Father died. Dr. Inglis sent Christmas presents.
December 31 The white cow broke her stanchion. The year '73 with all its hopes and fears gone forever.
January 1, 1874 Mr and Mrs. Campbell, Willie and Clare, my wife, Robert and I went to Mr. Clarkes. A very peasant day.
January 6 Elizabeth's birthday. Cutting down the grove. Liza took Anna to school, went to the Normal. Wife and I started to go to see Mr. Campbell. Roads too bad, turned back. Heard of G. Hart's death.
January 8 Mary took Lizza to school. Bell and Robert waded through the snow. Frank came with the sleigh and took his mother to Augusta. Killed a sheep for mutton.
January 9 Robert and I went to town at night and heard Pres-ident Angel's fine address.
January 17 James Campbell, wife and I came up from Augusta. Elizabeth went to the Normal and then Anna, Robert and the Pony start for G. Gales. Mrs. Fletcher came.
January 20 Bought 17 hens and some furniture at Will Thorn's sale. Wet and flood on low land. Had to fetch Bell and Robert thru the stream on horseback.
February 7 Robert and I dressed a sheep. Drew up some wood. Hens eating the eggs.
February 14 Mrs. Inglis and Maggie came and Robert and Eunie. Attended Farmer's meeting in afternoon, 20 percent as usual.
February 19 Mr. Crane paid $10 interest on his note, an easy way to get money. Wife bought goods on the dividend.
March 11 Robert's birthday. Elizabeth's last day at the Normal for the present.
March 26 Frank and Mrs. L went to Augusta. Left $100 of Anna's money with Wm Campbell. Went to Mrs. Sander's funeral, the old man left alone.
April 2 Went to Detroit and went with Dr. Inglis to a number of places. Saw Smith's farm and fat stock and Farry's (Ferry?) Garden.
April 4 Went to Mr. Adairs and bought trees. Called at Frank's coal office and then home.
April 15 My 53rd birthday. Planted evergreen trees that may remind my friends of me when I am gone. I can hardly realize I am old.
April 18 Sold our wool 389 lbs at 43¢. It weighed well. It was pleasant selling wool to Mr. Saxon. Bought 8 Steels Red, 8 Greening and 8 Waggners of E. Cotton. Ed is sick, poor fellow.
April 20 Robert started to school. Frank making board fence. I planted apple trees. Mr. Fletcher came in the night for Mrs. L. Set out 100 Canada and Wagner apples.
April 29 Called on poor sick old destitute John Campbell. Wife went to Augusta to tell her friends of his distress.
May 9 Received 500 green trees from A Root in York State. Paid dollar for freight and $1.50 for trees. Sold pie plant and bushel of apples for a dollar.
May 11 Planted 500 green trees alone.
May 18 Cool morning. Feeding horses. Wife getting breakfast. Bell milking barefoot.
May 21 Robert and Mrs. Morton came. Two girls were drowned in the Paper Mill dam.
May 24 Mr. Yost died.
June 18 Wife and Frank went to Pittsfield. Hived a swarm of bees.
June 19 Bell's birthday. 3 of her companions came to rejoice with her.
June 20 5 girls bathing in the brook.
June 23 Paid Vanatten, a lazy greedy boy. Mary and Bell gathered strawberries. Wife sold $4, $14 dollars in all.
June 25 Frank and Vanatten put supports under the barn. Wife, Mary, Liza and Bell went to the closing of the Normal.
July 4 Mary, Liza, Robert and I went down to see the soldiers come in. Heard a grand oration from Layton Colfaz. Went to see the fireworks. Some horses were frightened and broke our buggy wheel. Our American friends were sensible and did not read the Declaration of Independence but sang A' Lang Syne—a great improvement.
July 8 Left the buggy for Ben Thompson to fix. Sold 3 lambs and 2 wedders to Shilemire. Girls went to Mr. Fletcher's child's funeral.
July 13 Frank to harvest for hire. Paid Ben Thompson $5 for repairing the Buggy. Blacksmith $1. Mary, Elizza, Robert and I went to Lowell. Frank did not come home.
July 22 Went to John Campbell's burial at Stoney Creek.
August 2 Mary and Elizabeth washed. A writer in the Country Gentleman speaks in favor of one of my letters.
August 7 Anna and Maggy and James Inglis arrived from Detroit. James helped me with arranging the bees. Bell sick.
August 12 Went to Detroit. Mr. Inglis, Willie and I had a delightful sail on the Dove to Grosse Isle. Mr. Inglis and I went to Father's grave, all that is left of the greatest of men to me. Went on street car to Sulphur Springs. Returned home at night. Dr. Inglis coming with me to Ypsilanti and going on to Kalamazoo.
August 25 Brother Robert building a brick building for his horse. Would like to have one for my family.
August 26 Roe Fletcher paid Frank $33 for the wedders. Kate Inglis and Hellen Todd came at noon.
September 5 Wife at Wm Campbells while he is contending for his rights at Ann Arbor Court House.
September 8 Anna, Elizabeth, Robert and I went to a pleasant family gathering at Mr. Campbells. All the friends and I.W. Childs, Aron Childs and Mr. P.A. Childs and their wives.
September 11 Wife and Wm Campbell went to Mr. Coverts burial.
September 12 Mr. Campbell came and we looked at Mr. Grey's 30 acres of land at $40 per acre. He thought it a poor looking place. Frank going to State fair. Anna going to teach in Pittsfield.
September 18 Talked to Brother Robert about buying Mr. Gray's land.
September 28 Frank's birthday. 20 years old. Wife and Robert went to Augusta at night.
September 30 Robert came bringing the sad announcement of James Campbell's death, bringing a shock of unexpected sorrow over us all. It is wonderful that a young man of such unusual virtue and ability should be taken away so suddenly forever from us and so many left less worthy to battle for the Right. It is like a Standard Bearer fainting in the ranks of the faithful.
October 1 The leaves are fading reminding us that we will all fade as leaves. It is difficult to believe we will never see our good and true friend James Campbell anymore. Anna, Mary, Frank and I went to James' burial–a very sad duty. A great concourse of mourners. Professor Cocker and Angel came from Ann Arbor to pay their last respects. These three great men paid tribute to the virtues and great ability of the deceased and seemed to make our loss all the greater.
October 17 Mrs. Campbell, Willie and Clare, Brother Robert and Eunie came to gather walnuts. Some of my brothers that think they are smarter than me have received a great deal of money from Robert and want more. We have sustained ourselves, honorable on a small farm and ask no help. A genial kind letter from David Inglis.
October 19 Took down a grist. Got a barrel of salt.
October 21 I have been reading that in 10 of the families in Britain leave the bulk of their real estate to their eldest Son to preserve and honor the family. I received nothing when my younger brothers sold my Father's estate, but will try to maintain the prestige and honor of the family without it.
November 5 The Democrats seem to be gaining ground and my friend, a Campbell, will not be sent to the Senate as I expected. Went to see Mr. Woodard surveying 28 1/2 acres of land belonging to Mr. Gray for Brother Robert.
November 18 Wife went on to Augusta. Frank angry because his mother took the horse.
December 3 Brother Robert has three men working on his marsh.
December 14 Frank hunting. Wife and Elizabeth washing and mending. Bell milking. Robert putting in window lights. Brother Robert came. Wanted Frank to help and be civil.
December 16 Heard of Dr. Inglis sickness.
December 18 Went to Detroit. Found Dr. Inglis very ill, taking a long and last farewell to all his family and me. Another great wave of sorrow. Will I see my grand good friend again? Stayed over night with Mother. She old and feeble.
December 19 Came over the icy river and found crepe on the Doctor's door.
December 21 Wife and I, Robert and Eunice went to Dr. Inglis funeral. A sad, strange day. All the ceremony, pomp and dis-play, the flowers and tributes to his departed worth cannot fetch him back. His spirit is certainly absent from the body. Strange two of my sisters were not wanted at the House. We might lay animosities aside when death comes.
Continue reading in the William Lambie Diary, 1875.
View a photo of the the Lambie family in our Gleanings image gallery.