I once had this idea that I was going to collect diaries and transcribe them. The transcriptions would then be hyper-linked in excess so that these historical documents became connected to the vibrant interconnected web we call the internet. The basic problem with this plan, is of course, time. It takes an excessive amount of time to accurately read and type out the contents of diaries. So instead, I'm featuring my vintage diary collection here. On occasion, I will feature a few weeks or a month of the diary entries from one of my collection. I will, of course, continue to collect more as I go.
Today's diary is a very special one. It belonged to my great-grandmother Emmerance Albina Forget(te). She was born in 1899. After her mother passed away in 1914, Albina took care of her ten siblings. She married William Cumm in 1917 and they lived with their daughter Thelma in Plattsburgh, NY a town nestled in the Champlain Valley region of upstate New York. Her diary dates from 1934. Albina was 35 years old that year.
Albina M. Cumm
December 25th, 1933
The first day of the year. We spent it quietly at home. A wet dreary day. Rained all day. Temp. 38 above. Thelma took care of Barbara & Junior in the evening while Frances went and saw “Love of a Sailor” with Joe Brown. Bea and Nelson here in the evening. Charlie got all moved yesterday on Margaret Street now. Bill will work at Rock’s tomorrow.
10 below zero this morning. What a morning. Washed today. Bill worked at Rock’s. Nelson came and got “Jipper” Charlie’s dog. Baker will take him down to the creek and shoot him. Had Ed Aubin come over this evening. Nothing much happened today.
Temperature stays about the same. A few flakes of snow flying around. Bill worked to Rock’s and I work at Missus Katherine’s & his in forenoon. The family were all in to dinner at Mrs. Barthow In evening. We may possibly get a radio this week. Pearl phone me she wished to sell hers. Will see her later.
Same temperature this morning stays so cold. Bill worked again at Rock’s. Went over to ___ in the evening. Listened to the radio. It was good. Heard several Hollywood stars. Ed came over before that. Nothing else to write about.
Nice out this morning. Thelma & I went to Aunt Vina’s. Have bought Pearl’s radio. Now to go over and get it. Ed Aubin over in evening played with the Adirondack Mountaineers over Plattsburgh lane today. Good. Joe Gonyo buried today. Ed Raymond very ill in Hospital ____ mass. pneumonia.
Warmer than warm today. All water and slush. Bill work at Rock’s today also yesterday. Got the radio from Pearl’s. Enjoyed it heaps the first evening. Stayed up to 1am. E.A. came over around 10. Nelson was the one to get and bring the radio. Couldn’t get it in our car.
Went to 8:30 mass at St. John’s. Warm and nice. Went to ___ in the afternoon. Charlie, Letta & the baby also Ed Aubin came with us. Radio good in the evening. Marion and Harold & Mrs. ____ came over awhile. Florence and Huard to Pa’s today. Also Albert & the kids. Thelma goes back to school tomorrow.
Monday nice and warm. Not much of anything new. Mrs. B___ planning on going to the hotel this week. Will now look for two months or more (maybe).
This day still warm and nice. Worked at Mrs. Barthow’s packing up. She will go to the Cumberland tomorrow until April 1st. Nothing exciting happening.
Wednesday another warm nice day. Helped Mrs. B again this forenoon. Thelma, Mrs. Weatherwax, and I went to the movies saw Marie Dressler in “Her Sweetheart” very funny. Nelson started work with Bill today.
Thursday. Worked at Mrs. Mooney 2 ½ hours today. Ed came in a few minutes in evening. Warm and cloudy. No sun. Nelson and Bea came a little while last night while we were at the movies.
Same sort of weather as yesterday. Cloudy & warm. Worked 2 hours at Mrs. Mooney in afternoon. Mrs. Weatherwax and I went to the library and post office. Mrs. Hazeltine died sometime this morning funeral Sunday. Ed came over a couple of hours.
Saturday. Still mild nothing very exciting. Stayed home all day. Ed
ward came in evening. 9.15 we went over to Mr. Hazeltine remained til 11.15 funeral will be tomorrow. Looked real nice and natural. Loads of flowers. She loved them. Snowed hard when we came home. Trees all white and pretty.
Waded through the snow to the 830 mass at St. Johns. About 6 to 8 inches of snow fell throughout the nite. Went to the funeral. Cold windy 12 above at 4 oclock. Charles & Nelson were pallbearers. Also Nelson Gebo, Roland Loso, Mose Loso & Geo Cook. Bea, Lea, & Thelma took care of the home. Charlie & Lee home for supper. Ed and Mr. Weatherwax came in the evening. Radio good.
Monday and colder. Sunshine in afternoon. Mrs. Weatherwax and I went uptown. Stopped at Mrs. Barthow’s room at Cumberland Hotel 108. Put in three new tubes in radio. Can’t get a thing. Don’t know what ails the darn thing. Mr. Fisk looked it over. Washed my better grain dress and shortened one Mrs. Barthow gave me.
Nice and warm. 40 above or so. Sunny. Washed today. Bill still at Rock’s. Nelson there too. Cliff up to dinner. Mr. Fisk came back found a dead tube in the new ones took it back. Hope it plays tonite. She wants some music to liven things up a bit. Nelson came in and got radio going. Ed came in a few minutes.
Cold this morning. About zero. 4 below. Worked Mrs. Katherine 3 hours. Ironed most of afternoon. Mrs. Weatherwax and Ed came in evening. Radio good. Bill went down to Rocks and Freeman. Must see Mrs. Barthoy tomorrow.
14 below this morning. Will work at Mrs. Mooney this morning. Didn’t get much else done except ironing. Thelma and I went to the movies. Saw Maurice Chevalier in “The Way to Love.” Rather funny. Saw Mrs. Barthoy at noon. Gave me 3 for taking care of her plants.
Warm today but snowing. Marion came in today. Ed in here tonight. Nothing worth while writing about. Bill & Nelson went down to ___ today. Mrs. Weatherwax & Ed came in tonite also Marion and Harold. Had a game of cards.
Cold as Hades today 20 below once again. Got a letter from Henry. Says Pa’s been sick. Huard & Florence & Joyce came down. Bill worked at Rock’s in afternoon. Bea & Nelson, Charles & Leeta & baby. Mrs. Greeno and Marion, Ed, all in evening. Played radio until 1:30. Had so much fun played cards.
Went to 830 mass this morn Mrs. Weatherwax, Thelma, & I. Cold as the old horny. 20 below again. Waited for our wood until 530. Dad's 38th wedding anniversary today. Alone at home all day. Radio good in evening.
Cold again. Went 10 below last night. Henry came down today. Got a job in the mill also Albert and Edward one too. All here in evening to go to father's had to turn back. Roads were blocked. Bea & Nelson Charles & Leeta here also Ed. Albert staid up until 11 oclock, had guitar, harmonica. Mrs. Greeno was over too.
Rather nice out today. Hazel & Frank up in evening. Marion & Mrs. Greeno came in while they were here. Nothing new to write about.
Wrote Henry today. Sent Pa check for 15.00 went down to the bank and withdrew 50.00 from interest and placed in checking account. Pa had 450 interest. Thelma & I went to Leeta while Mrs. Weatherwax & Eddie came in evening. Also Marion for a minute. Ed quit his job today.
Went out again. Mrs. Weatherwax went to the doctor's today. Henry ___ came over in uniform with another friend. He enlisted in 26th infantry last week. Ed was over til 10 oclock. Nothing new to write about. A man named ___ was killed on the job Albert was working on. Bricks fell on his head.
Way below zero this morning. ___ ___ home. Henry here. Nothing else to write about. Mrs. Weatherwax & Ed came in during the day.
Nothing of importance. Ed in evening. Radio good. Nelson & Bea went to Chazy after fixing car. Bill paid us tire. Charlie came in for awhile in afternoon.
Raining. Went to 830 mass at St. Peter's. Thelma, Ed & I. Bill went to 9:15 mass. Had dinner with Hazel & Frank. Such a nice dinner. Stopped at Pa's on way back. Florence, Huard & Joyce there. Lee, Charlie, &; baby. Nelson & Bea. Baby sick. Florence & Huard were here for supper.
Monday 18 below zero. Ever see such weather? 46 degree difference in 12 hours. Marion in a few minutes. Nelson also. Bill went to work. Leeta came back with Thelma. Charlie here a few minutes.
Cold again. 20 below. Mrs. Weatherwax left for Ticonderoga on 1153 train. Hate to see her go. Will miss her. Ed in in the evening. Henry here too. Uncle Mose over in the afternoon to get Frank's address.
One month gone already. Winter can't go by too fast to suit me. Hope February will be ___ __. Cold again this morning. Worked at Miss Katherine's this forenoon, worked this afternoon. Henry here also Albert. Ed in evening. Seems funny not to see Mrs. Weatherwax across the way.