Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Diary of Abba Owen

Newest chapter in an ongoing serialization of the 1888 diary of Abba Owen, daughter of Ypsilanti mineral water baron Tubal Cain Owen and Anna (Stowe Foote) Owen. The Owens lived in a now-vanished house near the current day Roosevelt School building on EMU, where Tubal also had his magical and very profitable well.

Friday Oct. 12th: It has rained pretty nearly all day.

Saturday Oct. 13th: It has rained off and on all day and [I] have stayed in the house all day for I have taken a very bad cold. Lew telephoned down from Ann Arbor this morning for the boys to come up and see the football rush but the roads were so bad and it looked as if it would rain any minute and so they did not go. Grandpa came home to-day.

Sunday Oct. 14th: Mama and Eber went to church my cold was so bad I could not go. It has been a cloudy day but has not rained much.

Monday Oct. 15th: It has rained all day. A week ago last Tuesday Mama sent her violin into Detroit to be fixed and we received it this afternoon and it sounds and looks very much better.

Tuesday Oct. 16th: This has been a very pleasant day but the wind blew very hard one of the trees in front of the Normal blew down. There was a great accident happened this morning about half past eight at the Peninsular Paper Mill. One of the boilers blew up killing one man and injuring another. It spoilt the boiler nint [?] to it sending it into the wall and knocking a hole into it. Papa, Grandpa, Eber and Richard rode up to see it and I ahall go up tomorrow and can write more about it then. I took my first violin lesson to-day. Our musical club met this afternoon Mr. Parntes read the Constitution and our club was named the Learic [Lyric?] club. Then we elected for officers Minnie Wilber for Pres. Laura Jeniss for Vice Pres. Lester See Sec. and Grace George for Tres. Mama, Grandma and I called on the Sills.

Wensday Oct. 17th: I did not go up to see the wreck for Eber took Mama west into the country to buy some turkeys to have for Cleary's Banquet, so I could not go. But Richard says that the boiler landed across the road and wound around a tree so that you could walk under it just like a tent.

Thursday Oct. 18th: Last night Mama went to a Ladies Library social at Mrs. Walton's and Grandpa, Richard and I went to the Opera House to hear a minstrel troupe and it was splendid. After we had been home a little while I think it was about eleven o'clock Richard and Papa started to put the horse out they had not got but half way to the barn and we all heard some one screaming for help and Papa and the boys started and they found a woman in front of the Normal yard on the ground and I never heard such screaming in my life. It seems that she had just come on the train and its being a very bright moonlight night and she thought she would walk up to Mr. Hutton's where she rooms and after she had walked a little way a man began to follow her and he chased her up as far as the Normal and caught her and got her purse and when Papa got over there he had run and the poor woman was so scared that she could not tell where she wanted to go and so Papa took her into Mr. Gallops and they knew her and said she roomed at the rent house where Mr. Hutton lives. She thought it was a colored man but she was so scared that she is not sure that it was. They arrested a colored man to-day but he proved not to be the one.

Friday Oct. 18th: It rained quite a good deal to-day. Richard went down and took his violin lesson this morning.

Thanks for reading! Tune in next Tuesday for another week of Abba's diary!

1 comment :

Dusty D said...

The explosion Abba refers to was not at the Peninsular mill but at the Lowell mill a ways upstream at the now-vanished settlement of Lowell. It was quite the explosion; I'll post the article tomorrow.