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William Lambie Diary, 1880

William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image William Lambie Diary, 1880 image
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Ypsilanti Historical Society
OCR Text

January 1st- New Years-Mrs. L and all the family and Willie Campbell all started to see Grandfather and Grandmother Camp-bell in the long bobsleigh-a laughing uproar our young men and women-I was left alone to take care of the house and stock-No callers.

January 2nd- Wife and I went to see our old friend George McDougal, the old man was sick and sorrowful after losing the partner of his life.
The boys took Anna to the Depot at daylight to resume her teaching at Elkhardt.

January 9th- Thaw-Ducks in the stream-Robert Campbell and our Robert went to the Church at night with a lantern.

January 14th- Frank and I and friends went to Ann Arbor to the Fire Insurance Meeting in the Court House.

January 19th- Church meeting about increasing Salaries and enlarging Church Building-Much wrangling-why increase when we have trouble meeting the ones we have now.

January 23rd- Frank took down a grist and drew 2000 ft of fence boards $28. I went to the burial of old Mr. Spears in the old burying ground.

January 24th- Called at Mrs. Worley's beautiful home. Heard the sad news of Ellie Estabrook's death. The grand good Christian has lost a noble wife and daughter in one week.

January 26th- Three went to Estabrook funeral.

January 27th- Wm. Campbell came and told of Sarah Clarke's death. Wife and I went to the funeral at Stoney Creek-stayed overnight with Father Campbell.

January 28th- Heard of death of Mr. Van Tyle.

January 31st- Sold 2 1/2 bushels of apples to Davis-bought Bran for feed.

February 2nd- 6 above zero-Heard a robin in the last of January, the earliest we recollect hearing one was February 20.

February 4th- Pioneer Meeting in Lansing. Not rich enough to go.

February 5th- Went to hear the world renowned Muller who supports so many orphans and schools by faith and prayer and takes no collections-a very good speaker.


February 6- Frank bought 40 fence posts from Fletcher's farm in Sumpter.

February 17- Wife and I went to A. Campbell's and was kindly treated and seemed to strengthen each other. Our friend Andrew who use to be a “braw___(a scotch expression) has become an intelligent gray haired Christian Farmer.

February 18- Robert went to oyster supper in the Church. I was too weak to go.

February 20- We heard that Rolland Fletcher who owes us $216 has run off with his brother's wife. A sad disgraceful affair-Let Newton have 3 swarms of bees on shares and was sorry after-wards as B. Voorhees said Newton did not pay his debts.
Mrs. Fletcher promised to pay the note.
The Church gave the collection to destitute in Persia. Feel anxious about the note Rolland Fletcher owes us.

February 24- John Clarke has gone to England-he seems to be under a cloud.

February 28- Mrs. Fletcher came and promised to pay her note. It was unfortunate for her as her husband did her so ill. Heard Knapp bought 30 acres of the Perrin farm at $21 per acre.

March 1st- Frank and Frank Miller began to make a new board fence on the lane.

March 2- Wife and I went to Pittsfield to visit Robert Campbell-pleasant time-But Aunt Lizzie(Mrs. Lambie's sister) in no more there to welcome us-all joy and kindness uied with Mrs. Clarke.

March 4- Heard the good news that Rolland Fletcher who owes us has returned.

March 6- Went to town and sold butter and eggs-Pattisen in his Commercial wrote some about John Howland's death.

March 7- Sacrament-full Church-some new members-Our old friend born 1801–20 years before me, walked to Church and dispensed the bread and wine and walked home 4 miles-John Geddes.

March 11- Robert's birthday-17 years old. Walked to town and saw Mrs. Libel's greenhouse-called on Robert and Mr. Fletcher. Went to Augusta-Old friends glad to see us but we greaved over disgrace of John Clarke who stood so high in our estimation. He failed us shamefully.


March 18- Mr. Campbell and I went to see sick Mr. Heath. He seems to be near the eternal world.

March 19- Wm. Pomray sawed wood-5 of us went to Fletcher-Crystal wedding-I was asked to present a few lines.

March 22- Frank, Robert and I went to Booth's great sale. 400 acres of land, 25 cows as many horses and 600 sheep.

March 26- Robert's school ended-Mr. & Mrs. Campbell came-The boy's and I went to Sam Casey's sale-Robert went home with the Campbells.

April 3- Heavy shower-burned soot out of chimney-Jones came to borrow $1.00-when a dollar and joy of buttermilk can make a man happy it is happiness to give.

April 6- Went to town-butter .20¢, eggs 08¢. Bought pants from Robins $4.00-heard of Mr. Loudon and Loveridge deaths.

April 7- Lucking bought the steer and a yearling Ram $39.00. B. Voorhees came to join us in buying a land roller $16.00.

April 10- Frank paid $50-sent him and J. Miller for fencing-Owe Pomray $3.

April 14- Went to Theodore's sale-Got feed ground for cows. Some dreadful wicked ones setting buildings on fire in Ypsilanti.

April 15- My Birthday again-59 years-everything grows to maturity and then fade away-Sold Wedder to Lucking.

April 19- Robert took Elizabeth to School-the lambs do not look well-10 alive-5 dead-Mr. Lucking's boys took away the steer and 2 sheep-Robert got a pig from Fletcher.

April 20- Robert and Pomray repaired fence. Paid Pomray at Noon and he enticed Robert away. I plowed and did the chores alone-Wm. Campbell came but no Robert.

April 22- Wife and I went to look for Robert and were glad to see him coming up the lane at night. The sheep seem to do better in the green fields.

April 26- Rainy-Reading Macauley speeches and Poems. Frank went to Augusta to shingle-Went to get plaster-Thompson want-ed $5.25 and Grangers promised it at $4.-The bees are doing ill-One swarm died in the winter and two this month. Only two good swarms left-they are not worth grieving over.


April 28- Have 21 lambs-10 or 12 dead.

May 1st- wife went to consult Dr. Fraser-Frank paid Ben Voorhees $8 for half the roller and brought it to roll our fields.

May 5- John Miller came and he plowed with Robert all day. All went well-no fretting, scolding or bad words. Frank shingling for Wm. Campbell.

May 9- 5 went to Church-Sermon on the 4 ways of Education: The family, the Church, School and Street.

May 11- Robert went fishing and did not come back-Mary, Elizabeth and I went to town to sell and buy planted melons and squash-A. Gray got 15 bushels of corn-6 bushels of oats.

May 15- Robert and Dan planted potatoes and corn in the South field-3 girls and I went up the river for flowers.

May 18- Robert and Dan harrowed-I helped some and cut the lambs tails-10 ewes and 12 rams. Only 22.
John Taylor and wife and Miss Rogers came in the evening.

May 20- Washed the sheep in the Huron River-Had good help-15cwt of Plaster from Grangers $4. per ton-weary with overwork.

May 22- Mary's Birthday-Robert did not come home last night-Mary, Elizabeth and I went to see the Ladies___ Exhibition and were pleased.

May 23- 6 went to Church-Dr. Pearson preached on the Kalamazoo Normal College.
Dr. Pearson is turning all his great abilities on the right side-just what is needed to reform the appalling wickedness of mankind. He said 100 Million is spent every year in the United States for strong drinks-
If we were to load wagons with tons of silver dollars it would take a line of them from Detroit to Jackson.

May 25- Repaired line fence on South Field-cleaned up wheat and sold two loads to Deubel-72 bushels at $1.07-I could have sold this wheat for $1.25 when we had little to do in winter but the young folks said to wait for even higher price. Duebel paid $60 in paper, $10 in silver and check for $20-total $140.68.

May 28- Sold 66 bushels Oats to Ainsworth $23. 10-Robert and Dan lifted a rail fence and relaid it along the west side of the corn, by the gate fence.


May 30- All stayed home from Church for the first time because of rain.

May 31- Sold 23 bushels of Oats to Chidester $8.23. Mrs. L came home from Wm. Campbells-planted cabbage and cauliflower-put sheep inside.

June 1st- Leafy June-Wife, Mary and I went to Miss Weeds funeral-A good beautiful young woman gone.

June 2- Went to Wm. Campbells with a barrell and a wee duck-bought wool twine, bread and beef for the sheep shearers.

June 3- Fine morning-let out the sheep at dawn-Frank, Dan Miller, Tom Spoonser and G. Voorhees shore all the sheep but 15-Rensifor tied up the wool-good help and good wool-paid Dan and Rensifor $2. each.

June 4- Frank and Tom finished the shearing-shore 107-hope it goes to 700 lbs.

June 7- Wife and I went to see old friends in Augusta-Grand June day-my lines to the Dandelions in Ypsilantian.

June 8- Strawberries getting ripe-Robert bought 2 little pigs $4. Mrs. L, Bell and I went to see our good old friend Mrs. Camp.

June 9- Robert and Frank Miller took the Horses and wagon and worked out our road tax-Norton is not so unjust on the road as old Eben when I was poor and weary.
Took Wm. Campbell's horse to him and brought his family to dinner-
After the tremendous row at Chicago, Garfield got the nomination.

June 10- Put hen manure and ashes on the cornfield. Robert went away with Knapp.

June 11- Bought a blue suit for Robert from Sanders $13.75. 92 in the shade. Paid F. Miller $5. Strawberries and peas good.
Took a grist and 14 bushels of shelled corn to Mr. Chidester.

June 15- Too wet to work in corn-planted beets-Sold 10 bushel corn to Bueland and 10 to Holmes $15. Crows in our corn field. Robert went to Knapps. The wheat field gives promise of plenty.

June 18- Robert hired Voorhees riding cultivator and did good work-Sold 3 wedders and a lamb to Lucking $11.


June 19- Bell's Birthday-The girls and I rode down the river to Belleville-Anna came in the evening from Elkhart.

June 21- Frank went to Pittsfield-Robert mowed with the horses and F. Miller with sythe-grass very light-Picked strawberries-86 in the shade.

June 22- Raked hay and got in 2 loads-the rake gave trouble-the sheep trampled the oats.
5 of us went to Commencement at the Union School. A great crowd and great heat-heard little. The American young people ought to do well with all the appurtances they have.

June 24- Got in all the light hay in the orchard. F. Miller mowed the rough marsh-Robert went off and left us.

June 25- The girls white washed and papered the kitchen-Rain and more rain. Fletcher's hill washed out and nearly impassable-Paid F. Miller $5. for haying.

June 28- Bell and I got the cows under the barn-Robert got the horses shod-picked cherries and thinned the carrotss. Henry McDougal came.

June 29- Put Lender purple(?) and plaster on the potatoes-Rain filled the gallies and Robert tried to fill them with dirt-Peck got 20 bushels of corn.

June 30- Mrs. L's Birthday-The four girls and I went to the Normal School and heard the Graduates speak and John Smacker sang. Robert did not come home at night.

july 1st- The four girls and I went to Ann Arbor to hear Harris and Speels Band. saw students clad in broadcloth and silk carrying baskets of flowers-took our dinner on a breezy hill under an Oak-Robert not with us, went to now for Knapp against my will-His waywardness made the day sad for me. Got in nearly all our hay.
John Miller and wife came-honest John Paid $4.10 for wool.

July 2- Bell took her friend Sue Hayes to the Depot and Mrs. L went to see Aunt Hewins whose life seems to be ebbing away.

July 3- Wife and I went to Detroit-CAlled on Brother James and family. Took dinner with Mother(in Canada) and we were kindly treated. Went with Brother Francis to his home-then to Sister Agnes and David and Frank Inglis home-it was very pleasant to have so many kind friends.

July 4- Heard Mr. Brown in the morning and Mr. Estabrook in the evening-The Americans are getting wise-less bluster than there was when I was young-Mr. Estabrook gave some statements of the appaling effects of Intemperance 60,000 down to drunkards every year.


July 6- Robert and I cradled in the South field-Jon Miller with his reaper, Jerome, Frank and Thumb harvested too-New potatoes very good. Put the wheat in stacks-good growth on the South field-Bell and Brother Robert helped me set up sheaves.

July 8- John Miller and his 3 sons were binding sheaves before we had breakfast-Frank and Robert helped John finish his harvest.
The girls painted woodwork and out a new carpet in the sitting room and cleaned the cellar. I am filled with joy of gratitude of such things and the harvest.

July 9- Got in 10 loads of wheat-Frank, Robert and Bell help-ed bravely-93 in the shade. Thundershower in late afternoon-Thunder rumbled like the drums of heaven.

July 10- The girls brought up Brother Robert's Horse and Buggy. Heard of the death of our kind old friend Mrs. Camp and read of the death of Uncle Archy's widow of Rylandside-the companions of young life and the friend of old age passing away from earth to Heavens unclouded bliss.

July 12- My Brother Robert and Francis went away to the Sea for their health and I have to battle away at home. Five went to Mrs. Camp's funeral and I helped to carry my good friend to her last resting place.

July 13- 96 in the shade-warmest this year. Robert, Bell and I got in all the wheat, the most we have ever had but I almost envy those who could rest by the Cool Blue Sea.

July 14- Mrs. Wm. Campbell, Clair, Sarah and Lois came.

July 16- Went with Frank leaving him to thrash at Thumbs and John Miller. Robert did not come back from Knapps. I cultivated, the corn higher than the horses heads:

July 19- Brother Frank sends word, him and Robert are happy catching Mackrel on the Coast of Maine. I try to be contented thinking it is cheaper and safer at home.
Paid John Miller for harvesting-his account was $17. Paid Frank and the binders.
Prof. Gabriel Campbell came at night.

July 23- Mrs. L and Anna went to town with G. Campbell-Drew manure and picked apples-We have more apples than we can eat or sell. Oats nearly ready.

July 30- Robert plowed-Theodore reaped the tangled oats-Paid him $3.75-John Ross helped bind-Mrs. L and G. Campbell went to Augusta and A. Campbell's.


July 31- Frank and Criss moved the corn crib-drew out manure-Paid Criss $2. Turned the sheep on the oat stubls. Brother Robert sent a paper from Mount Washington, New Hampshire. I would like to see the Mountains last of July-the month of Harvest.

August 1st- All the girls and no boys went to Church-Went to Prayer meeting at night to hear Captain Allen's address on Temperance.

August 3- Went to the Depot and brought Sister Agnes, Willie and Aggie-They brought peace and serene pleasure. We drove around by the old Moon farm.

August 5- Bell, Robert and I went with the Band Excursion to Put-In-Bay. Bell unwell, the water bothered her.

August 6- Sister Agnes, Willie, Aggie, Mrs. L and I rode in the big buggy round the section to see the old home-we wondered about when we were strangers in a strange land-over 40 years ago.
Tobert going away-we hardly knew where closed out joy.

August 7- Took the visitors and our 2 Mary's to the Depot and saw them on the train. Tobert came back and plowed.

August 8- The two boys, Ann and Elizabeth and I went to Church and heard Gabriel Campbell give a good sermon.

August 10- I spread manure-Robert took Frank and his tool chest over to Wm. Campbell's intending to go far west I would like if instead of finding fault with me he had at least bade me good-bye. Mary Ann and wee Jay Campbell came.

August 12- Brother Francis' Birthday-the day we gathered oran-berries in Mossmullock and spent gala days without care in those years of long ago. John and Mrs. Taylor came to dinner.

August 13- Robert and I bought horse nets to protect the horses from the flies $3.50.
Went down at night for the girls and met Mr. & Mrs. Darling at Mr. Wartz' a very select party.
G. Campbell came that night in the moonlight.

August 18- A Post card from Frank in Dakota Territory. All went to a family gathering at John Campbell's-A great feast ate under the Walnut Trees.
Sold 4 sheep and 2 lambs to Luckens $17 in silver.
Bought a blue coat and vest $7.50.

August 20- Mrs. L took apples to Mr. Smith to dry and brought the girls home from the institute.


August 21- Mr. Fletcher came for Mrs. L before daylight.

August 23- Robert helped Harry thrash. I harrowed and Elizabeth and I went to the Grange in the evening.

August 25- Robert worked with the riding cultivator-More thunder-storms. Brother Robert returned from the East. Mrs. L and I went to Mortons about a golden wedding. Paid Ellen Crippen $56.00 for teaching.

August 26- Robert and the 4 girls went up to visit at R. Campbell's in Pittsfield-Criss and I cut weeds.

August 27- Robert cultivated and went to Knapps to fiddle against my wishes-92 in the shade-Mrs. Allen came-Grapes and peaches are good.

August 28- Lifted $70 from the Bank-Walter Campbell came from Pittsfield on his velosopede. Two girls and I went to Casey's Golden Wedding-a pleasant affair-I read some lines that seemed to give pleasure to the company. Dark and Dank coming home-Mary carried the lamp, I led the horse and Elizabeth sat in State coming down the hill.

August 30- Cloudy and dark-More rain-R. Fletcher came to look at the sheep. He got 10 of Miller's sheep and 19 of ours paying $50. Sheep seem to sell higher than last year and Roll got the best of the bargain.

September 1st- Went to the Depot to attend Pioneer meeting-Missed the train. Came home wet and disappointed.

September 2- Mr. Hunt came to visit Anna-More rain.

September 4- Frank and I cut corn-Robert rode the cultivator-got 5 bushels-got corn ground. Paid Mr. Rensifer $60 for School money. Robert and I went to the School meeting at night-small meeting-James Rensifer elected Director.

September 7- Fine cool morning at 50 degrees-Elizabeth began her school. The boys bought 23 bushels seed wheat.

September 8- Went to the Depot and saw Anna off to her School in Elkhart. Met G. Campbell, J Richmond and Mr. Cellers, the Missionary from India-The boys have J. Miller's drill and are drilling wheat-cool at 44 degrees.

September 9- Frank finished drilling the North Field about 11 acres, 3 more never in sheat before-Robert and Jones, Cress and his German friend and I cut corn in earnest as it looks like frost and is well ripened. Brother Robert and wife came-they do not look very well after getting the benefit of the sea breezes. Mrs. L walked home from Wm. Campbell's-about 10 above freezing. Robert and I went to Mr. Twists for 12 bushels of Fultz Wheat for see $11.40. Frank got his trunk from Dakota.


September 12- A stranger preached in the Church. Robert did not come home at night or all day.

September 14- Went to Detroit and Royal Oak-had a fine visit with Sister Isabell-their farm is too low for a wet season. They seemed to be as healthy and rested as though they and spent 6 weeks at the Sea.

September 15- James Todd brought me up to Detroit. Called on Brother Frank and went with him to the Fair-Saw Sister Agnes-met my old friend Guy Follew, who played with us when we were boys. He got a premium for his gray horse and was slated-No other face seemed to beam like his. Stayed over night in Windsor with Mother but Brother James was not brotherly. Took dinner with Frank Roes and had Lager and bread. CAlled on Sister Agnes and missed John Common. There seems to be wealth and prosperity in the Country. Met John Morton of Lapeer whose forefathers fought at Drumdeg(?).

September 17- The boys and I dug potatoes. The wealth of this Country seems to be produced in the Country and spent in the Citites. Mankind is rarely rewarded accounding to their works-Sometimes seems those who do the least get the most. Potaotes good in the sand.

September 21- Bell went to the Normal and paid her tuition.

September 25- Moved the wool from the barn to the Wood Shed-110 fleeces-Frank bought coal for the Thrasher. Jerome brought his engine and separator.

September 27- Had 12 to breakfast and 18 to dinner including our selves-about 140 bushels of oats and 295 bushels or 300 of wheat-good yield and good stack-very tired and did not have the money to pay Jerome.

September 28- Dat straw too wet to put in the barn. Helped Mr. Read to thrash and hurt myself.

September 30- Sick last night-Frank went to the Ann Arbor Fair but I was too weak to go.

October 1st- Wife and Robert took the girls to School. Down hearted and unwell. R. Fletcher paid $30 interest-Got some relief from Dr. Kinne.

October 2- 4 girls came to buy apples-Mr. Hiscock and Hattie came.

October 4- A great rain last night-Mrs. L took the Girls to School-Got 12 Apple Barrells from Ainsworth-we all helped gather apples. Robert took 4 barrells of apples to School.

October 6- Frank went to work for T. Spoonser and Robert to hunt with the Millers.


October 7-Frank took 6 Barrells of apples to Sister Agnes and 2 to Brother Frank and got 10 apple barrells from Ainsworth-I gathered apples and getting better. Paid Frank Smith 75 cents for Interior and $2.75 for the Evangelist. Apples abundent and cheap-can hardly get wages for our work. Paid Fox $5.00 for husking and Jones $2 for picking apples.

October 13- Word came that Mother was very sick, so went to see her and found her improving. Sister Catherine vexed me-Frank met Isabell and I at the Farry-Robert at the Depot here.
Quite a contrast between the Detroit River and the Huron.

October 15- Robert and Jones got in two loads of Russetts and then it rained. Elizabeth Campbell came from Pittsfield.

October 18- Brother Robert came with Telegram that Mother was dying. Sad news.
G. Campbell brought word that Mrs. Hewens was dead.

October 24- Mrs. L came back from her Aunt's funeral(Mrs. Hewens). A sad letter from BRother Frank saying Mother was fading.

October 25- The leaves are falling and our friends are dying. We fade but never as beautiful as the leaves.

October 26- Borrowed $20 from Brother Robert until we can sell some of our produce.
Elizabeth had Ague.

October 28- Sold 5 1/2 barrells of apples to Chidester for $3.30. Sold 10 Barrells to Ainsworth for $4.50 enough to pay for 18 empty barrells.
Killed a sheep for mutton.

November 2- The Great day to elect the President. I went to see Mother in her home in Windsor-she was failing but in no pain. Met Sisters Agnes and Isabell, good and kind and Brother Frank too.

November 4- A great Republican Victory-Garfield by great majority. Fay Hawkins and Son and A and L Gray husked and Robert and I drew corn.

November 5- Ainsworth would not buy the Russetts. Our horse Dick was sick and lay down in the Street. Mrs. L away with her Canadian friends to her Fathers.

November 6- Bell helped me take care of the stock in a blustering snow storm.


November 9- Paid Hawkins $6. for husking 150 bushels.

November 12- Took apples down cellar and in afternoon went to E. C. Peck barn raising. G. Campbell came at night. Paid Fox $4.35 for husking-hawkins $2.12.

November 16- Thirty one years since we were married-we are growing old-heard Mother was comfortable.

November 18- Only 4 above zero-Put the Ram with the sheep and the lambs by themselves-Paid Alford Gray $4 for husking.

November 22- 8 below zero. Stock cold and hungry-John Howland paid $2 for two sheep skins.

November 27- Bought a new overcoat for Robert $8.

November 29- Robert went to School with Elizabeth.

November 30- Fire at Cornwell Mill-Frank and T. Spoonser killed a pig.

December 1st-Wife and I went to the Pioneer Meetin in the Baptist Church-great turnout, and then dinner under the Presbyterian Church-day was spent wrangling about the publication of Washtenaw County History by parties in Chicago.

December 4- Guy Follew (boyhood friend) sent us his likeness.

December 5- Our old friend John Geddes walked to Church and served us with the bread and wine. It would be hard to find a better man.

December 9- Went to town and got my likeness taken-Paid $6 to Rexford for Pew rent.

December 11- Frank paid the Taxes $25.61-Received the School money $195.14.

December 13- Frank and the Miller boys shot 16 rabbitts, 3 partridge. paid Elizabeth $10. I owed her and Bell $5.

December 20- Paid Kitty Fifely $56. for teaching.

December 24- Went to Mr. Campbell's in Augusta, a kindly welcome and got 1/4 beef. A Christmas Box from our faithful Sister Agnes. A gift for each of us.


December 25- 12 years since Father spoke to me the last time. Mary, Elizabeth, Frank, Robert and Den Campbell went to visit the Grandparents in Augusta. I rode to the Depot and then attended the service in the Episcopal Church. A strange experience of sadness and joy. I was later at home and presented with Moors Poems, a fine cane and other marks of respect. And the young people gave gifts to each other with great glee.

December 27- A Christmas box came from Anna in Elkhart.

December 29- 16 below zero and only 6 below all day-Four of Andrew Campbells young folks came undaunted by the cold and their laughter was a contrast with the desolate howling blasts.

December 31- Last of 1880-A good year-abundant crops.

Continue reading in the William Lambie Diary, 1881.

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