Browsing category: Glimpse into the Past

New England’s Dark Day — May 19, 1780

An area of New England as far south as New Jersey and as far north as Maine experienced an event that has come to be known as “New England’s Dark Day”… before noontime on that day it had become as dark as early evening…


What Did People Earn in 1860?

Reader question… “I found your site searching for information about prices in 1860. I find your posts about the past to be extremely interesting and I envy your access to the old journals and newspaper clippings.”


Prices for 1860, 1872, 1878 and 1882 — Groceries, Provisions, Dry Goods & More

Many people have asked if I would post more prices from these years from the old family journals. So here are prices for 1860, 1872, 1878, and 1882… for “groceries, provisions, fuel, dry goods, rents, and boards.”


How To Boil a Potato Perfectly, Circa 1880

These instructions on how to boil the perfect potato are from an old book on housekeeping that was written in 1880 especially for a new bride or beginning cook.


Prices from the 1899 Sears, Roebuck Grocery Lists

Another of the old family journals… this one for the year 1899… seems to be mostly an accounting of what the weather was like on a given day, when animals on the farm were born or sold, crop information, and prices for various items…


What Did Things Cost in 1860?

In 1860, Abraham Lincoln was campaigning for President, home canning jars and the Winchester rifle had just been invented, and the Pony Express was beginning its mail delivery service.


The Year Without a Summer

My great great… grandfather was extremely interested in weather patterns and always kept a detailed daily record of weather conditions at his farm.


“Any Citizen of the United States Has the Recognized Right of Paying His Respects to the President”

I came across an amazing old book about culture and manners this weekend, and I found the tutorial on how to act when meeting the President especially interesting.


A Little Book About Law and Life, Circa 1881

This little book started life as a leather covered textbook that was written by a man named Walter S. Cox. He led an interesting life… he was one of several lawyers who defended the group of people who were accused of conspiring to assassinate President Abraham Lincoln.


What Did Things Cost in 1872?

In 1872, the U.S. population had grown to over 38 million people, and Ulysses S. Grant had just been re-elected for a second term as President.