Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The 1919 Diary of Ypsilanti High School Teacher Carrie Hardy

Part of a year-long weekly serialization of Ypsilanti high school math teacher Carrie Hardy's diary.

You may recall that last week Carrie started teaching her 1 morning and 2 afternoon summer school classes. She moved her ice box onto the porch, mended some clothes, visited Alley Festa, and missed her traveling friend Lillian. She finished her week by visiting the cemetery.

July 5 Sat. Cleaned bathroom + kitchen. Moved ice box to back porch [why? Did these early refrigerators, which were cabinets containing blocks of ice in a top compartment, become too drippy in an un-air-conditioned house in the summer? Also, it is likely Carrie had home ice delivery service at 223 River, in addition to milk and paper delivery]. Slept, bathed, hoed garden. 5 gals. of gasoline. May telephoned that Rob would not come Sun.

July 6 Sun. Did not go to church-feel mighty blue without reason. Did some cleaning + sewing. Wrote to Lillian in St. Paul. Rode in car to cemetery [According to information from Carrie's Bible, recorded on her father's obit card, Carrie's father had died July 16 four years before and was buried in (Union)-Udell Cemetery at Huron River Dr. & Textile Rd.; perhaps she visited his grave. Carrie's mother had died in 1874, which is probably the year Carrie was born; she may have died in childbirth. At the time of this diary writing, Carrie is around 44 years old.]

July 7 Mon. Washed & ironed. Dusted car. Trig from 1-3. At four attended Summer school faculty picnic. At 6:45 Victrola concert at Pease Aud.

July 8 Tues. Rec'd card from L.-She is homesick. She returned home about 5:30 this P.M. She stayed all night with me.

July 9 Wed. 1-3 class off today + the 3-4 class did not meet on account of extra assembly. Mr. Burton, Pres. of Minn., spoke. Student-faculty get-together in eve.

July 10 Thurs. After 7-8 class we went berrying. Mrs. Fletcher, Miss Lambie, Lillian, little Mary, and I. Martha in eve-S. Lewis, May Webb, Lillian & I.

July 11 Fri. All classes on. Miss Creech called on Miss Gieske. After supper went with Lillian for her father at huckleberry marsh.

July 12 Sat. Bo't 7 qts. of cherries from Miss Creech and canned 10 pts. Was sick from noon on. Lillian stayed all night with me.

July 13 Sun. Took 7:30 [interurban light rail?] car for Detroit. At 10:00 boarded steamboat Thousand Islander [pictured at right] for Chatham, Ont. Returned at 11:00.

Thanks for reading; tune in next Tuesday for the next series!


Dusty D said...

Note that in the 1919 Victrola ad, Victrolas cost up to $950--that's **$11,300** in today's money.

Edward Vielmetti said...

Here's a 1902 interurban schedule; I don't know what happened to the frequency and schedule of traffic from 1902 to 1919.

Dusty D said...

Ed: Wow, interesting! A car *every half hour* from Ann Arbor to Detroit from 6:45 a.m. to 8:45 p.m.!

The car barns for this railroad were, if I'm not mistaken, located on the current Water Street site.

Lisele said...

I think the car barns were on the site of the car dealership, across Michigan Avenue from Water Street. About the icebox -- I have a very interesting 1927 decorating book that shows the "Woman's Power Kitchen" (no kidding). It is a duplicate of my own 1927 kitchen. The icebox pictured backs up to an outdoor porch. The delivery man could open up cupboard-like doors on the porch to access the icebox and put the ice directly into it. I call that convenience. I bet that ice was only delivered in the summer -- in the winter you could just use the outdoors for chilling. Maybe she moved it to facilitate summer ice delivery.

The porch that once was on the back of my house was destroyed in probably the 1950s, when there seems to have been a major remodel. Going by other houses on the block, it was a double-decker porch with an open deck above off the back bedroom.

Anonymous said...

Yay! You are back and blogging! I am so glad to see you back in the blogosphere :)

Dusty D said...

Lisele: Yep, you are right---the car barns were across the street from the Water St. site. Sorry about that; I misremembered.

Your thoughts on the icebox are fascinating. Yes, that makes perfect sense: move it outside to make delivery easier. Never thought of that.

I'm very glad you are visiting to contribute info like that (and thank you for the correction!) :)

Dusty D said...

TeacherPatti: Nice to see you again too! Thank you for visiting, and I hope you enjoy the blog!