Lambie Diary: July-December, 1895

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, August 1991,
August 1991
Original Images:






July 1.
Robert went to reap Harries wheat-Hoed round the peach trees, Wife picked currents.

2.
Roberts man hoeing potatoes. Hoed potatoes and put green on.

3.
Robert reaped the wheat by Nortons corner. Praying for rain.

4.
Mrs. Fletcher and her boys walked to hear her. Ann Mary and the 3 boys went to her far. Wife and I went to Robert he was to tired.

5.
Hoed a line of potatoes-90 in the shade-Robert sich and reaping in the parched land.

6.
Went to Franks farm to help Robert and did no good-Hoed potatoes Belle and the girls picked cherries. Roberts man sawed wood and picked cherries. Robert reaped for Frank Fletcher.

7.
Wife, Ann, Mary and I went to Church. Mr. Allan was in the pulpit on giving to the missioners. Brother Robert and I had a tide to Franks farm-no rain for so long, 97 in the shade, Wife went with Willy Fletcher to his home.

8.
Belle came to pick cherries. Robert drew manure in cold winter days and sowed barley in the Spring and he reapes it today, short and light-hardly worth cutting-there is no dollars a day for poor Robert.

9.
Robert reaping short barley-hoed potaotes on the reclaimed marsh.

10.
Robert reaped all his rye-hoed corn down by Evarts line.

11.
Roberts man drew in the wheat-Robert reaping Franks wheat-Ann and Mary and Mrs. Fletcher and her sons went to Bells-longing and praying for rain. Robert reaped Mr. Martins wheat-Wife and I went to Mr. Fletchers for supper and stayed overnight.

12.
Wife stayed with Mrs. Fletcher, Willie and Harris came home with me.

13.
Saw the farmers oming with their milk to the Creamery. Azro has to heavy a burden to bear and a very pleasant home.

14.
Sabbath-Mr. Morey preached on keeping the Sabbath-Brother Robert has a good crop of hay and drew in same.

15.
A grand and refreshing shower-

16.
Robert cradling his wheat on the new rough land-Wife took Mrs. Fletcher and her sons and Mary to the Motor to go to Uncle Williams, then went to Bells.

17.
Robert got in his Rye-dry blasts-corn leaves rolling-howed corn by the road bridge.

18.
Robert sent away his smoking man-Ann took Roberts famliy to Mrs. Fletchers in honor of Roberts birthday.

19.
A good light shower in the night. Wife went to Bells. Robert got new potatoes small but good-Roberts man raked hay and barley.

20.
Robert and his man drew in barley-went to Town-Called on Brother Robert.

21.
Sabbath-A generous collection for Foreign Missionaries-Mr. Morey preached on the danger from Saloons.

22.
Wife, Ann and Mary went to Town. Robert got the Surry wheel repaired and drew in rackins. Longing and praying for needed rain.

23.
Robert begun to reap Oats for Harry at noon. Wife, Mary and I went to Mrs. Fletchers.

24.
Robert reaped Harris Oats-Wife and Ann went to Azros.

25.
Robert begun to plow-Clouds without rain-Corn and Potatoes wilting.

26.
Wife took Ann and Mary to the Motor to go to Dr. Campbells. Miller horses got in Roberts Oats.

27.
A welcome refreshing rain in the night-planted cabbage and sowed turnips-Wife and I went to Mrs. Fletchers.

28.
Sabbath-We read the 65th Psalm at home, then the Minister in the Church. Thou visitist the earth and waterest it, thou greatly enrichest it with the river of God.

29.
Robert went to reap Franks Oats-picked peaches the birds picked. Planted cabbage.

30.
Robert reaping his Oats, sowed turnip seed between the rows of potatoes-Wife and I went to Bells for dinner, Cool breezes.

31.
Wife very lame-Robert reaped and mowed all the Oats. went to the Motor at night for Anna and Mary.

August

1.
Sowed Turnip seed, cool-Ann and Mary went to Mrs. Fletchers-Robert cut thistels.

2.
Brother Robert and I drove over to Franks farm. Anna and Mary went to Mrs. Fletchers.

4.
Wife, Anna and Mary and I went to Church. Mr. Richmond preached to a full house.

5.
Roberts man raking Oat stubble-Wife went to Roberts.

6.
A grand refreshing shower in the night. We all went to Belles to celebrate Wills birthday, a grand dinner and party.

7.
Wife took Anna and Mary to Roberts, planted cabbage. Wm & Andrew Campbell came.

8.
Harvie thrashed for Robert in the forenoon, up here in the afternoon Crops much better than we expected. On Roberts farm 135 bushels of whea 60 of Rye. On ours 223 bushels Oats and 95 barley.

9.
Pitched straw off the Stack into the Hen House. Wife, Anna, Mary, Willy, Harris and I went to Mrs. Fletchers.

11.
Sabbath-A good shower while in Church-some wet coming home.

12.
Brother Franks birthday-his body in a Detroit grave far away from Straven, the Heather and old Scotland-Helped Roberts man to empty about 45 bags of Oats that grew on Hatties farm.

13.
Wife went to Roberts-begun to cook new corn and cabbage. Hoed turnips and cabbage. Anna and Mary went to Mrs. Fletchers in her Surry

14.
Robert and his man went to help Frank thrash-pitched straw in the barn.

15.
Roberts man cultivated, went down to see him.

17.
Mowed grass and weeds, Wife, Mary and I went to Church. Brother Robert and I had a pleasant drive by Kimmels.

18.
Sabbath-Mr Allan preached-Robert drilled rye.

19.
Cool-pleasant morning-Robert rolling his Rye ground.

20.
Dug potatoes and hoed cabbage field-corn good for dinner. Wife and I visited our good old friends Mr & Mrs Ben Voohees.
Lambie Diary-1895

21.
Wife went with Mrs. Fletcher and then to Uncle Williams.

22.
German Day and Parade-Wife and I and Mrs. Fletcher and the 3 boys drove round by the German Grove.

23.
Robert and all his family, Mrs. Fletcher and the boys, Ann and Mary drove up to Mr Smiths and picknicked under the trees. Uncle Gabriel came at suppertime.

24.
A grand refreshing morning shower-Wife and Uncle Gabriel went to Town-Peaches well filled and getting ripe. Wife, ANna, Mary, Uncle Gabriel and I went to the Soldiers Monument and the City.

25.
Wife, Anna, Mary, Bell and I went to church. Some vile wretch as I suppose had set fire to the horse shed intending to burn the Church.

26.
Brother Robert came-went with him to Franks farm and saw his improvements.

27.
Plowed the wild grass that hurts the potatoes. Robert got his reaper in the barn. Wife went to Bells.

28.
Wife, Anna and I went to great family gathering at John Campbells at the old home in Augusta. Robert, Hattie, Mary and wee William and Frank went along too.

29.
A fine gentle morning rain, continuing till 4 then the girls took Uncle Gabriel to Azros and up here Will and Bell came to supper.

30.
Wife and I went with Uncle Gabriel to the Depot at 8 o'clock and daughter Anna at 10.

31.
Dr. CAmpbell, wife and daughter came to dinner. Mary took them to Azros and then to the Motor.

September

1.
Belle went to Church with us-A stranger preached on Sabbath Schools.

2.
Farewell to another summer-Wife went to Azros for Mary. Picked grapes and peaches. Robert got the horse to roll the barley ground-let the hens out.

3.
Dug potatoes-Willie helped to pick the peaches.

4.
Robert helped to gather our good crop of peaches. Wife, Mary and I went to Mrs. Fletchers. Was up 3 times in the night looking at an eclipes on the moon.

5.
Willie and I dug potatoes, Mrs Fletcher, her 3 boys and Mary went to Roberts.

6.
Wife, Mary and I went to the Church meeting. Mr. Morey came back.

8.
Sabbath Scarament was surprised and sorry when Mr. Morey read his resignation.

9.
Roberts man dug potatoes, Wife and I called at Mr. Harris and Brother Roberts homes.

10.
Mrs. Fletcher came and wife and Anna Campbell and 2 of Roberts girls went with ther. Robert and I picked a fine lot of peaches. Something disturbed the hens in the night.

11.
Wife took the scholars to school and went to Bells with Mary-Robert helping to thrash-I cut corn-93 in the shade-warm.

12.
Very warm-dug potaotes in the wicked weeds-a good thunder shower in the afternoon.

13.
Roberts man drilled wheat-dug potatoes-A pleasant drive with Brother Robert to Franks farm.

14.
Helped Robert to clean seed wheat-his man drilled in nearly all the wheat-Went to Town and to Azros before dark.

15.
Wife, Mary, Anna CAmpbell and I went to Church-A sermon on closing Saloons-Wife went home with Mrs. Fletcher at night.

16.
Cloudy morning-Went to Azros for Mrs. L-cutting corn.

17.
Paid MR. Lay $8 for the Church seat and went to Town and To Mrs. Fletchers.

18.
Robert cutting corn-Wife went to BElls-very warm.

19.
Picked large late Crawford peaches till I was weary-wheat coming up, Insurance double what it used to be.

20.
Robert helped to pick all the peaches-went with him to see his good crop of corn they are cutting, Wife went to Bells, Anna Campbell went to Azros for Mary-92 in the shade-a warm wind.

21.
Cut the corn up here-Wife, Mary and I went to Town and to Azros-gave away some peaches.

22.
Sabbath-Very warm in Church for Wife, Mary and I.

23.
Fine cool morning. It was about 90 at noon yesterday and 58 this morning. Brother Robert and I had a nice drive over to Roberts Farm that used to be the wee misty marsh and had a good view of the old Moon Farm.

24.
Wife went on the Motor to Uncle Williams, Mary took Mrs. Fletcher, Harris, Robert and the Miss Stevensen to the Railroad garden.

25.
Wife, Mary and I went to Town-Tomatoes 20 & 25 a bushel.

26.
A good thundershower in the night, the wind blew the top of the stack, Robert and I got big potatoes on what used to be the Marsh.

27.
Wife went to Azros with Mary, then her and I went to Bells for dinner and had a pleasant visit.

28.
Cool breezes, Robert brot us a load of wood just when we needed it and carried potatoes down cellar.

29.
Franks birthday. I was sick allnight and all day. None of us went to Church.

30.
Was sick and could hardly work.

October

1.
Got a good nights rest, glad I am better and able to work in the sunshine. Wife, Mary and I went to Town.

2.
Laidlaw got back to Ypsilanti, Called at brothers and heard letters about Eunice riding as a male up the mountains of California.

3.
Dug potatoes-Wife and I went to Mrs. Fletchers for Mary.

4.
Golden October-Wife took Mary to Belles-Robert his man and I digging potatoes.

5.
Wife walked to Robert and the old home farm.

6.
Sabbath-Went to Church-Balmy breezes, blue skies and the trees green, yellow with golden splendor.

7.
A refreshing shower in the night, Misty morning-Wife went to Bells. Cold blasts-John Campbell came at night.

8.
Dug all the potatoes, a light crop-Robert sold 20 bushels of them to Mrs. Laidlaw-Brother Robert and I had a pleasant drive to Franks farm.

9.
Wife went with Mary to Bells-I planted gooseberries. Roberts man brot up a big load of big potaotes, I shoveled and he carried them down cellar.
Lambie Diary 1895

10.
Wife and I went to Mr & Mrs Smiths and met sister Agnes. We had about all that earth can give a grand happy day.

11.
A grand refreshing rain in the morning-My good friend Robert Campbell sent a money order $18 for interest, the largest sum I received all summer.

12.
Wife, Mary and I went to Town and Mrs. Fletchers.

13.
A minister from Alma preached a good sermon on the Bible.

14.
Wife, Mary, Mrs. Fletcher, Harris, Robert and I called on Mr & Mrs Miller in their fine home and then on James Hamilton. Was cold at Mr McAndrews, he was very sick.

15.
Was invited to Mr & Mrs Grays golden wedding. Frank came with a load of potatoes-Wife went to Bells.

16.
Brother and wife called-High winds and dust.

17.
An eclipse on the moon-went to dinner at Mrs. Fletchers and she came home with us.

18.
Robert and his man carried in the kitchen stove. Wheeled manure round the berry bushes-dry blasts.

19.
The wind blowing as it would blow its last. Mary went with Bell in the roaring blast.

20.
Sabbath bleak blasts. Mr Morey preached an unkind depressing sermon. Mary went with Mrs. Fletcher-snow shower at night.

21.
Snow melting in the sunshine, Wife, Bell went to Town in the moring-Ice thick on the horse pail.

22.
Wheeled manure in the barrow round the trees-longing and praying for rain on the dry parched land. A letter from Mr. McConachie and a paper from John Lamb. Wife and Mary and I called at Mrs. Fletchers and Brother Robert heard of Wm. McAndrews death-Kind Brother brought me a good coal.

24.
Ice thick on the horse pail-one tree of late peaches all frozen.

25.
CAlled on Archy McNicol, Wife and I went to Wm. McAndrews funeral. Took Mary to Bells.

26.
Brother Roberts birthday-Wife and I went to Mr & Mrs Grays golden wedding and was very kindly used by a fine company of Christian friends.

27.
Sabbath-A little rain-A sermon from a Detroit Minister, heard of old Mrs. Crippens death.

28.
Cold dreary blasts-sent the lines on Mr & Mrs Grays wedding to the Ypsilantian.

29.
Robert and Hattie went to old Mrs. Crippens funeral.

30.
Mrs Fletcher, Harris and Robert came-Wife went to Bells-Robert selling barley.

31.
Wife and I went to Mrs. Fletchers and brot home Mary. November

1.
Bell came and Mary went home with her. Mr & Mrs Allison sent papers from Austrailia.

2.
Robert took a load of straw to Mr. Robertson.

3.
Sabbath-A Detroit minister preached-Bell came.

4.
No Ice, some like Spring-Robert sold a load of straw and put the remain of the stack in the barn.

5.
Like Indian summer-John Campbell came-Wife went to Bells-Wheeled in corn stalks.
Lambie Diary-1895

6.
Like a May day-Went to the old farm-Robert was away helping to thrash corn.

7.
Wife and I went to Mrs. Fletchers for dinner., Mr. McConchie sent a rose root from one he brought from Scotland.

8.
Rain in the night-the fields greener and less danger from fire. Read, wrote and rested and heard the refreshing rain falling nearly all day.

9.
A wet morning-stayed at home and enjoyed the needed rain.

10.
Mr & Mrs Fletcher, Willie and Harris sat beside us in Church-Hard frost.

11.
Wife went to Uncle Williams, Mary brought Mrs. Fletcher, Harris and Robert-Beautiful sunshine after the frost.

12.
Bright sunshine-Wife went to Bells-Robert has three doing husking.

13.
Robert and his man put up the coal stove-Called on Brother Robert and met Eunice that just returned from California.

14.
Wife went to get some teeth filled, put some turnips down cellar.

15.
Robert brot 3 loads of corn-banked up the house.

16.
Our wedding day-had a sore throat all night-Wife and Mary went to Town.

17.
Sabbath-Wife and Mary went to Church. Sickly, weary and sad. MR & Mrs. Fletcher and family, Robert, Frank and Bell all came to see us in kindness.

18.
Like a Spring morning. My throat a little better, was able to take a cup of tea for breakfast. Mrs Fletcher and boys came and brot Grape jelly.

19.
Cold rain and then snow.

21.
Cold morning about 6 above zero-Bell and Robert came-Mary went home with Belle. Could eat some dinner-bright sunshine at noon-Lots of cattle going fast on this shipping day. Dr. Fraser and Brother Robert came to see us.

22.
Had a good nights rest and a good breakfast and a good cup of cold water. Frank sent 3 loads of old rails. Robert filled the flour barrel and sent a man to saw wood.

23.
DArk damp day-Robert oiled the Surry and the buggy and paid off his man. Kept a light burning all night and like it. Frank called.

24.
Sabbath-Wife and Mary went to Church-Belle came-some sunshine. MR & Mrs Fletcher and the boys came.

25.
DArk damp day-raining and freezing-Robert took the girls to School and called.

26.
Rain and a wind storm in the night-Robert took the girls to school and the clothes. Bell walked to the City, then here-Mary walked home with her-icy-some sunshine. Robert brot up a load of corn.

27.
Clear morning 12 above zero. Girls walked to school-Icy roads-Mary walked to Mrs. Fletchers.

28.
Thanksgiving-BEautiful star bright morning-sent a letter to S. McConchie and a paper to Robert Pate, Browncastle. Scotland. Wife drove to Town. Mrs Fletcher, Mrs. Dawson, Mary and 5 boys came.

29.
Mild cloudy morning, a good nights rest. Wife walked to Roberts as did Mary. Brother Robert made us a kindly call.

30.
Mary walked up from Roberts-Cloudy, Icy last of November.
Lambie Dairy 1895

December

1.
Mary walked to Church-Wife read to me a great part of the day.

2.
Robert took the girls to School and brot Milk. Frank called stormy morning-more snow. Mrs John Campbell came, Bell brot 16 hens and Mary went home with her.

3.
Pure sunshine on the pure snow. Robert came for the Bobsled. FRank called, Mary came from bells.

4.
Robert took the girls to school and brot Milk. Mary went to Town with Frank. Robert sawed wood-his family all came at night and we sang and rejoiced.

5.
Hattie and Mary went to Azros-Roberts girls walked here and their mother took them home.

6.
Mary walked home and then hitched up the horse and Mpther drove to bells.

7.
Bell and her Mother drove to Mrs. Wallerberries, Mrs. Fletcher and her boys came-Eunice Lambie and Wm Inglis made a plesant call. Robert brot corn stalks.

8.
Mary and her mother drove to church. Mr Fletcher and family drove past to Roberts.

9.
Wife went to Roberts-Robert sawed wood-Sunshine-Mary drove to Bells.

10.
Pleasant Winter sunshine-Wife and Mary drove to Mrs. Fletchers-wrote to Anna.

11.
Stormy day-shoveled snow to the stable in the morning and again at noon.

12.
Shoveled deep drifts of snow to the Barn-Wife rode in Roberts cutter to his home ant then Mary.

13.
The thermometer was at zero when Robert came. Mary went with Robert and stayed overnight. Daughter Annas birthday.

14.
Sunshine gleaming on the pure white snow. About zero this morn-Robert got the cutter in order and Mary and Belle drove to Town then Mary went home with Bell and stayed overnight.

15.
Mary and Bell came in the cutter-Wife went to church with them and round with belle to the Millers-,r & Mrs Fletcher and all the boys came and brot oisters for dinner. Some thaw and water run in the cistern. Frank came a night.

16.
Robert came with the big sled and the girls and milk. Robert put tow loads of corn for feeding-Wife went in the cutter to Azros for Mary.

17.
Thaw, some rain in the night-Belle walked here then Mary and her went in the cutter to Town and Wife drove with Bell to her home.

18.
Thaw and rain-Wife went to Robert home with his, Robert got a quarter of beef from W. Scotney.

19.
Rain, snow going away. Wife went to Roberts and got beef. Wife and Mary went to Town in the buggy-Mild.

20.
Wife and Mary went to Mr. Fletchers-mild like Spring. Robert and I puled a few turnips the frost had not hurt.

21.
A wet morning-Wife and I salted the beef, pulled a few more turnips. Robert brot Anna from the Depot after dark.

22.
Shortest day-Wife, Anna and Mary went to Church. Frank came, Robert and family called then Azro and his family.
Lambie Diary-1895

23.
Wife went to bells with a few turnips-rain after she started, then Robert came with a load of corn. Wife brot Bell and Mary back with her.

24.
DArk damp morning-Anna sawed down a green tree for Christmas-Brother Tobert came and brought presents.

25.
27 years since Father died. Robert, Hattie and the family came. Wife brot Mrs. Fletcher and the 3 boys, Azro came at noon. Frank came and Mr & Mrs Scotney, we had a good dinner, a happy party, a beautiful day and good cause for gratitude and joy.

26.
A snow storm in the morning, continuing till afternoon. Brave Hattie was with wee William in her lap and brot Anna and Mary home through the snow after dark. Girls brot the Ypsilantian with my Farmer's Sermon.

27.
Beautiful on the pure snow shines the sun-Anna and Mary went to Belles and stayed overnight. Frank came and did errands for Mother.

28.
Clear morning 18 above zero. Anna and Mary came back. Wrote to Sister Agnes-Wife and Mary went to Mrs. Fletchers.

29.
Wife and Mary went to Church-Anna and I stayed at home.

30.
Snowy morning Belle walked in the snow here and Mary gave her a ride home. Robert helped to saw at Harries in a snow storm.

31.
Sunshine and drifitng snow. Robert helping Harry to saw. Wife drove through the snow drifts to help Hattie. The end of 1895 and all its joy and grief. May we grow wiser and better every year.


Continue reading in the William Lambie Diary, January-June 1896.

View a photo of the the Lambie family in our Gleanings image gallery.

Gleanings First Dinner Meeting

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, December 1978,
December 1978
Original Images:

The first dinner meeting of the Ypsilanti Historical Society was an unqualified success. One hundred and sixty-two adults and eight youngsters gathered at five o'clock on Sunday October 15th in the dinning room of the First Baptist Church. The most successful affair in the eighteen years since the Society was founded. It was a warm friendly meeting with old friends socializing before being served the delicious dinner of chicken and 'dumplins' and all the fixings plus homemade apple pie!

The speakers of the evening, Foster L. Fletcher and Arthur J. Howard were appreciately listened to and at the completion of their speeches questioned by the audience. Tapes were made of both presentations.

The meeting was open to the public as well as to Society members. Foster spoke of Ypsilanti in the early years of this century while Arthur's topic was the early meat markets of Ypsilanti.

For those members who were unable to attend our very first dinner meeting Foster's talk is presented in full. As his contribution to GLEANINGS Arthur sent in his rememberances of Florence Babbitt. Those who wish to do so may hear both tapes at the Museum during Archival hours.

We plan to make this so very successful dinner meeting an annual affair.




From the Archives

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, April 1980,
April 1980
Original Images:

The Grove-Lower Huron
October 27, 1823

Messers F. & T. Farmer:

Please to pay the bearer Mr. Beverly, for me, four dollas and fifty cents in goods out of your store and oblige yours-

Henry H.Snow

(Henry H.Snow owned the land where Rawsonville is located and was known as “Snow's Landing”).


Woodruff's Grove
November 13, 1823

Messers F. & T. Farmer:

Please to send me by Mr. Cross, the bearer, 2 gallons whisky-4 lbs sugar-1/2 powder and 2 lbs shot and charge same to Sir, yours,

Henry H. Snow

l lb powder delivered, in addition to the above send one pound of tea and your bill if you please-H.H.Snow


Woodruff's Grove
January 17, 1824

Messers F. & T. Farmer:

Please deliver the bearer, Benjamin J. Woodruff, goods out of your store to the amount of five dollars and charge the same to your humble servant-

Henry H. Snow


Woodruff's Grove
February 13, 1824

Messers F. & T. Farmer:

Please to let the bearer, G.W. Noyes have three dollars out of your store and charge to me.

Henry H. Snow

Letter from David Gairdner to Robert Campbell (April 8, 1837)

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, October 1980,
October 1980
Original Images:



Author: David Gairdner

Our Historical Society member, Mary Campbell gave us a copy of this letter written by David Gairdner (sic.) in 1837 to Robert Campbell in Scotland. David lived in Augusta Twp. on Bemis Road.

Ypsilanti April 8th 1837

Dear Sir:

I take the opportunity of sending you by James Pearson a few lines to let you know we are all in good health at present thank God for it and we fondly hope this will find you and yours in the same state. I hope you will excuse my long delay in writing to you for though six years have passed is nearly run since we parted it seems to me but yesterday.

There is a great difference in this countryside since I came to it. The woods is fast disappearing and improvements making rapid strides. Eighteen years ago where the town of Ypsilanti now stands nothing was to be heard but the war whoop of the Indians.

Now there is stores and groceries everywhere that luxury or fashion could think of. And flouring mills from which hundreds of barrels of flour is exported every year. And there is a railroad in progress now from this to Detroit which is expected to be opened this Fall.

Last summer was very wet and cold. Crops of all kinds was very deficient and we have had a long severe winter. I have got nothing done yet on the farm as the fields is covered with water but I hope in a few days it will go off. This will be a hard summer on poor emigrants coming into this country as provisions of every kind is at a very high price. Wheat is one dollar 74 cents per bushel, corn one dollar 12 cents per bushel. Salt port eighteen cents per pound.

Butter twenty-five cents per pound, eggs 16 cents a dozen and other things in proportion. There's no chance of a man of small propensity doing much good in this neighborhood now land is got to such a high price. They are asking twelve hundred dollars for wild lots around this place and little improvement on it. Could not be got for a less sum for five miles around Ypsilanti.

Mr. Wilson is on the way of selling this place-he has four hundred and eighty acres. His price is thirteen thousand dollars. But there is yet plenty of Government Land yet to be got at the distance of eighty or one hundred miles.

And now you will see in the map which I send you the District of Huron attached to Michigan and is now set off into a Territory by itself and called Wisconsin and is beginning to settle. There is water carriage from Detroit all the way to it. And when you come out we will ALL go and buy half of the Territory and govern a Scotch settlement.

I have let the clearing of eighty acres on my lot, the cost is ninety two dollars. It is to be finished by the first of September and I intend to put into it wheat as I expect it will be the last crop on this farm as he is determined to sell and go to Illinois. When I bought my land it looked a solitary place in the heart of the woods. Now there is a house on every lot round it and a saw and grist mill and a store just put up two and a half miles from it. And a nearest neighbor to us is a Scotch man from Braeman. They say when the clearing is finished the lot will be worth six hundred and fifty dollars. That is a good advance in two years.

Our stock at present consists of four cows, two four year old oxen, one yearling heifer, eleven sheep and if luck is with us we will have four or more lambs. I have 12 acres of wheat which looks as though it would come on if the weather helps.

We all like this country very well now that have begun to to make acquaintances and get used to the ways of the country. The impression of old customs begins to wear off and there is nothing wanting on the part of living to make us comfortable. We are all clothed with the wool from our own sheep. This winter eight hogs will be coming on for next years port and what more could any reasonable man wish for?

Give our respects to all our friends and wellwishers and tell our friend James Campbell if he has any thoughts of coming to this country it would be a great benefit to him to send one of his sons out one year before him to see the ways of the country and he would be a great benefit to the family on their coming out.

May all goodness attend you and your family and warm friends,
Robert Gairdner

The money I had from you I am very sorry is out of my power at present to send it. I did not know of James going home before I let the clearing(?). I tried him if he would settle with you and the money would be ready on his return but he said it was uncertain whether there would be any money or not to spare. If you don't think of coming send me word and I will put the money with investment in New York one year from this date and you can draw in Kilmarbock as you shall see by the newspapers.

Reminiscences of Charles Fleming (1907)

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, October 1980,
October 1980
Original Images:



Charles Fleming, son of James and Martha Wade Fleming, was born October 30th 1816 near Romulus, New York.

He came to the Ypsilanti area with his parents May 17th 1827, living near Rawsonville, later moving to Ypsilanti in 1854 and living at 514 Emmet Street. He served three terms as City alderman.

Here is his interesting reminiscences written in 1907:


Reminiscences of Charles Fleming

In 1827 my father arrived in Detroit on his way west of Detroit to make a home. After storing part of our goods father found a team to take the balance and the family to Woodruff's Grove. There we were met by Archie McNath with an ox-team and taken to Aunt Polly McNath's home, on the bank of the Willow Run, about four miles east of Ypsilanti; and that night the wolves made the most hideous noise I ever heard by their howling. It seems the woods were full of them. The next morning we were up early, and I saw such a sight as I had never seen before. The air was fairly alive with pigeons as far as we could see every direction, all flying to the north and many of them flying so low that the boys with long whips could bring them to the ground. At dinner that day we had a delicious potpie, large enough for all, though there were twenty of us altogether. Father soon selected an 80-acre lot and went to Detroit to purchase it. It was about half a mile northwest of Aunt Polly's and about three and a half miles each of Ypsilanti. It lay on both sides of the Willow Run, and was so cut up by that stream as to make it very undesirable for a farm. After selecting his lot father returned to Detroit with an ox team to purchase it, and also a yoke of oxen and two cows, and to bring another load of goods. He could not bring it all, so he shipped the balance on a flat boat and there were brought up the Huron river to Rawsonville. The roads at that time were so bad that it took a week to make a trip to Detroit for a load of goodds, and even then a teamster would not think of going without an axe and an extra log chain, so as to cut pieces, for lifting the wagons out of the mud, doubling teams to pull them out.

I will give here one instance as a sample. My father was going to Detroit for a load of merchandise and let me go with him, and as we were returning night came on when we were about a mile from the tavern where we expected to stay overnight. The road was so muddy that the tired horses could not draw the load any farther, so we were obliged to unhitch and leave the wagon in the mud, and before we got to the tavern we passed two other wagons in the same condition. As we approached the tavern we heard the shout, “There comes another; misery loves company”. The men spent a jolly night together and in the morning, with teams rested, they started back for the wagons, ours being the farthest back; they all went with father to his wagon, hitched their horses ahead of ours and helped us on to better roads. Then father returned with them to their wagons and in this way all were able to proceed on their journey. This is a fair sample of the way transportation was carried on between here and Detroit for several years after we came to this county.

At first all our groceries and provisions excepting wild game and fish had to be Bought in Detroit and there were times when we could could scarcely get anything to eat. I remember seeing my mother taking ashes from the fire, making a strong lye and scalding corn in it to take the hulls off and boiling it soft, so we had to live on corn meal and potatoes. We were not alone in this condition. I remember at one time the mill dam was washed away and before it could be repaired every family in the neighborhood but one were entirely out of flour. There was scarcely any fruit to be had. We did find a few whortleberries, strawberries, wild plums and cranberries, but sugar was so scarce that sometimes it was necessary to use a little soda to neutralize the acid in the fruit. Canned fruit was not known at that time. All the fruit that was to be kept had to be dried. Pumpkins were used a good deal. They were cut in long strips and hung on poles before the kitchen fire. There were no cook stoves then, bread, cakes and pies being baked in a brick oven built outdoors, usually large enough to hold a dozen pans for baking. The oven was first heated with fine wood to what was supposed to be the proper heat, then the coals and ashes were scraped out and the bread was put to bake. Another way of baking was by the use of a bake bottle. This was of cast iron about five inches deep and fifteen inches in diameter, with sides nearly perpendicular, with legs two and a half inches long and the bottom perfectly flat, and a flat cover with a rim all around about one and a half inches high. This was placed over the live coals on the hearth and live coals on the cover. Then the thing was ready for business. This vessel was found quite useful for other purposes in cooking.

There was a great deal of sickness, many times not a well one in the family to take care of the sick, and only one doctor that we knew of. The sickness was mostly fevers and argue. There were a good many deaths, but not such a conveyance as a hearse was known. I remember one of our neighbors was sick and thought he was going to die, sent for my father and asked him if he would take his horse and carry his body to the grave, as he did not want to be drawn there by oxen.

It is utterly impossible for me to describe the trials, privations, anxieties, toils and suffering of the pioneers; but amid all this there was one thing that was really comforting: The citizens were all neighbors and friends; no one dared to be otherwise, for everyone was dependent on his neighbors, and when a stranger came he was sure of a hearty welcome. I will undertake to mention some things that were not to be had at that time by anyone no matter how much money they had, and which we think we could not possibly do without. There was not a match to light fire; no cook stoves, no carpets, no silver knives, forks or spoons, no kerosene lamps, no gas or electric lights, no envelopes, no refrigerators, sewing machines, spring beds, canned fruit, rubber shoes, baking powder, baby cabs, postage stamps, wall paper, photographs, telegram, telephone or railroads in the United States until 1826. The Erie Canal, New York, opened in 1825…


A remarkable man was Charles Fleming. On January 16 1907, the Flemings celebrated their 67th wedding anniversary. He died in April of that year. Charles' wife, Jane Shuart, (11-9-1823/ 8/31/1908) came from New York and they were married January 16 1840 in Van Buren Township, Wayne County. On his 85th birthday he mounted his bicycle and went to call on some of his friends in the city who were more than 80 years old. He called on the following:

Erastus Samson, Dec. 22 1819
John Boyce, Oct. 26, 1816
C.B. Earl, Aug. 15, 1815
Chas. Woodward, Oct. 22, 1921
James P. Dickenson, Mar. 14, 1819
Philo Fowler, Dec 17, 1820
John Voorhees, Aug. 2, 1823
B. E. Varnum, Dec. 23, 1821
Jas. M. Chidister, Oct. 10, 1821
D. L. Quirk, June 15 1818
Mrs. Wm. Wortley, Feb 14, 1816
W. B. Clark, Feb. 19 1814
H. B. Lee, Aug 14, 1816
Thos. Busby, Nov. 18, 1822
Mrs. Ann Bassett, Jan 2, 1823
H. C. Dole, Aug 9 1829
C. W. Walterhouse, Sept. 29, 1816
Mrs. VanHorn, Feb. 22 1820

Charles Fleming died at his Emmett Street home in April 1907. His wife survived until August 1908.

Gaudy's Chocolate Shop

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, September 1974,
September 1974
Original Images:



“MEMORY IS THE DIARY THAT WE
ALL CARRY ABOUT WITH US”
Fr: “The Importance of Being Earnest” Act 11
By: Oscar Wilde
(1856–1900)

Nothing can stop change-we all know that. But pleasant memories are with us always. This brief reminder is for all of those people who can still taste in their minds the bittersweet chocolate sundaes from “Gaudy's Chocolate Shop” and the chocolate or coffee ice cream sodas from Weinmann-Matthews Drug Store. And for those who never gathered in the drug store after a football game nor ever broused through Gaudy's-a short vignette of the past.

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George Milne Gaudy (1864 Stratford, Canada-1944 Alma Masonic Home Michigan), came to Ypsilanti when he was eighteen and learned the bakery business from Horatio Haskin at 23 East Cross Street. By 1886 Gaudy had set up his own business at 17 West Congress, (Michigan Ave.)-“Star Bakery” where, according to the 1888 City Directory, he was the Manufacturer and Dealer in ice cream, bread, cakes, pastry, confectionery, fruits, nuts, cigars, etc., which also announced “Ordered Work a Speciality” and “promised delivery daily to all parts of the city”. In the early 1900's the location of the shop was at 119 Michigan, (the present location of the Terry Bakery), and prior to World War I a final move was made to 24 North Washington.

A recent letter from Mrs. Annie Laurie Lambie Melvin who once worked in the Bakery and Chocolate Shop, gives a fine picture of its operations:

When I first started in Gaudy's they were on Michigan Ave. and they had a bakery on one side of the store and candy on the other, with a space for ice cream in the back corner with an old fashioned soda fountain. That was back in the day when bread was five cents a loaf or six loaves for a quarter. I don't think Frank Smith ever dipped chocolates, he and Mr. Gaudy made all the candy, ice creams, salted peanuts and punch for the parties. Frank Smith and his wife Margaret served as butler and maid or whatever you called them at the best parties. I was also there when he took the store on Washington Street. (This last move was made about 1914 for in 1905 the building was occupied by Edward B. Dolson, bicycles and sporting goods and automobiles. Mr. Dolson was the first local representative for Ford Automobiles succeeded by Schaible and Wiedman and in 1912 by Pickles & Bassett, Plumbers and the Washtenaw Home Telephone Co.) There was a vacant lot north of the store full of burdocks, tin cans and rats, lots of rats. Next door was a fruit market and next to that Jay Moore, (J.E. Moore Furniture Store).
During the time the store was located on Michigan the name was changed from “Bakery” to “Gaudy Chocolate Shop” in recognition of the candy making which won state-wide renown for the Gaudy name.

George Milne Gaudy was a member of the Masonic Lodge and served in public office for many years: Mayor (1904–05), Councilman, Assessor, Supervisor and Relief Administrator and Postmaster for nine years (1925–34).
The following hand written letter was received by George M. Gaudy when he was Mayor.

To: Geo. M. Gaudy, Esquire
Mayor of the City of Ypsilanti
Michigan, U.S.A.
Dear Sir:
The members of the family, Ypsilanti, including my wife and myself, are deeply sensible to the kindest invitation addressed to them by the City of Ypsilanti, celebrating the home coming of the first residents on the twenty first day of June 1905.
Fully appreciating the honors addressed to the memory of our illustrious grand-uncle, Demetrious Ypsilanti. They beg you to receive with their deepest thanks their truest and most heartfelt wishes for the welfare and prosperity of the city that bears their name, to which they feel themselves bound by a link of most cordial sympathy.
They consider it as an honor to write their names as expressing their feelings.
With great respect, we have the honor to be, sir,

Very truly yours,
(signed)
Immanuel Prince Ypsilanti
Theodore Prince Ypsilanti
Johanna Ypsilanti Countess Pappenheim
Chanelee Ypsilanti Princess Schillingsphinz

Podictiact, May 24th, 1905
Bohemia, Austria
The short notice following, “Ypsilanti Commercial” July 27, 1888, is proof that the Gaudy Bakery Shop was one of the hubs of city communication.
Hugh Locke says he wishes those who owe him for popcorn would call at G.M. Gaudy's and settle before he makes a special collection; he says there is about $12.00 due him and he will put some names on the dead beat list before long.
When Harold, one of the Gaudy's sons returned from the war he took over the operation of the business. Marjorie Lambie Troutveter, Ann Dusbiber and others prepared the popular lunches. Harold Gaudy died in December of 1941 and his wife, Ellen, assumed operation of the store until May of 1944. The location of the store at 24 North Washington was taken over by the Ypsilanti Art Shop operated by Miss Helen T. Sellman.

View an image of Gaudy's Chocolate Shop in our Gleanings image gallery.

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