About gDonna
The photo is my son and myself. Now days you can get a photo made to look old like this one. This photo was taken when this was the new look.

Harry S Truman was president when I was born and world war II had ended. I grew up in a time when lunch was put in a brown paper bag and a sandwich was wrapped with wax paper. There was no such thing as pantyhose, we wore stockings that attached to the rubbery clippy things that attached to the girdle. Convenience stores were not common and when we took a trip we packed a picnic basket because many places did not have fast food. Highways had places to pull over and stop, some with picnic tables. Read more ....

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The Diary of Sarah February 28, through March 26, 1932.

February 20, 2023

Even though I have ended the great depression study and moved to living a simple life resembling the 1948 -1965 years, I want to finish this diary of Sarah because it is a great diary to learn how it was to work hard and live during the great depression years. 

Sarah and her husband live in Ohio. They have a busy life, Sarah a housewife, involved with her church and activities and she is also a local news contributor for their community.  Her husband she calls Father, is a farmer. They have five grown children, two sons and three daughters. A total of 14 grandchildren at the time of this diary. 

Their son Joseph, his wife and children live in another house on the same land as Sarah and her husband and Joseph farms with his father. The other four children live on their own farms.  

We left off with her last post on Saturday, February 27, 1932.   A wonderful day - bright and warm all day - getting quite cool this evening.  Had the usual morning tasks to see to.  Spent quite a while cleaning up the range.  Set sponge for bread and baked 3 pies and a pan of cinnamon rolls.  Had dinner.  This P.M.  I baked the bread and coffee Kuche.   Gave the hall-way, living room & Kitchen and bedroom and especial clean- up.  Canned the mince meat, ten pts. and 4 qts.  Supper  & work following cut Papas hair, Mending, A bath. Late. 

Now we continue starting February 28 through March 26, 1932.

I will be marking new week so you can read casually and go back and pick up where you left off. In this post there will be four New Week's Sunday through Saturday. I will do all of the posts like this until all of the diary is typed out so jot down on some paper the dates you have read because I will be posting each time I have the time to type out a month.  It is not a matter of sitting down to type, it is deciphering her writing that takes awhile to type out each days entry. 

New Week

Sunday, February 28, 1932.  Some clouds but more sunshine.  Had the usual early morning tasks to see to.  Made preparation and attended church & Sunday School services.   Late to church as Joseph is having a turn at being Janitor.  Dinner at home.  Got some beef and a few cans ready and went with Joseph & family over to Margaret's for a visit.  Home again about 4 o'clock.  Usual evening tasks.  Ernest, Vera & Jimmie here for a while  Late.

Monday, February 29.  Cloudy real early this A.M. but soon cleared and was a most beautiful day, though somewhat breezy.  Early morning tasks.  Late at the washing , father had to solder the wash boiler, and as a result was late finishing Dinner about 1 0'clock.  Hung out the clothes since dinner.  Collected the news items.  Emptied and stored the washer.  Took down the clothes and saw to the evening tasks.  Supper, worked at the news items since Supper.  Late.

*  Note,  Since Sarah mentioned that Father had to solder the wash boiler we know that Sarah had to boil the water for her laundry. 

The Month of March 

Tuesday, March 1, 1932.  March came in like a lamb - cloudy early this A.M. but, the clouds soon lifted and we had a lovely day of fine bright sunshine.  Saw to the early morning tasks.  Sat down and finished copying the news items for the paper.  Prepared dinner for the tobacco steamers, father and Joseph. Served it a little after 12 - the convenient time for the men to come.  Felt so tired since dinner that I read a sale catalog for a time, After dinner work.  Wrapped and stored the canned beef.  Evening tasks, Supper, Sleepy. 

Wednesday, March 2.  Cloudy & raining for a time this A.M. but cleared about 9 o'clock, the sun shown brightly and the remainder of the day was fine.  Had the usual morning tasks to see to.  Dampened down the clothes and prepared to iron.  Did a good part of the ironing & then stopped to prepare and serve dinner.  Got up from the table and finished the ironing & then did the after dinner work.  Did a little mending.  Made a search for some material for topic to-morrow Evening tasks. 

Thursday, March 3.  A fine bright day of pleasant atmosphere.  Had the usual morning tasks to see to.  Got egg mash & put  into the feeders.  Shelled a can of corn.  Brushed out the Hudson So it would be fit to ride in.  Prepared dinner and while it was cooking studied my topic for this P.M. Dinner.  This P.M. I attended the L.A.S at Mrs. James where I served as devotional leader.  Home for evening tasks.

Friday, March 4.  Dull, dark, gloomy and quite a stiff breeze stirring this A.M.  Had the usual morning tasks to see to.  Somewhat brighter this P.M. with a bit of sunshine.  Used my spare time getting the mending done and reading on the Lindenberg baby.  Towards evening I scrubbed the East porch and pavement and the West porch and pavement.  Gave the bed-room an especial clean-up, got supper ready & served.  Cleaned up a basket of Parsnips. Mending. 

Saturday, March 5.  Cloudy and dull all the day through.  Usual early morning tasks.  Wrote an order to Montgomery ward & Co. for work shoes & cheese cloth.  Went to town with Joseph, saw to the trading & attended the quilt display where about 200 quilts were on display.  Wonderful quilts of every description.  Home again soon after 10 o'clock.  Eat a hurried meal.  Baked several pies, also bread & Kuche.  Gave the living-room and kitchen an especial clean-up.  Ernest, Vera & Jimmie here for supper & the evening.  After 11.

New week

Sunday, March 6.  Arose to find that the thermometer had dropped to 12 degrees above 0.  A cold stiff breeze was blowing and the ground was covered with snow.  Bright and clear.  Had the usual morning tasks.  Made some preparation for dinner.  Attended church & S.S. services.  Home about 12.  Harry, Pauletta & family here for dinner.  They left about 3 this P.M. Some reading - a nap.  Father saw to the evening tasks.  Supper.  Gathered news for the paper and did some writing.  About 10 o'clock. 

Monday, March 7.  Clear and cold and a stiff old breeze all the day through.  Usual morning tasks to see to.  Did the wks washing with the washer in the kitchen Late dinner.  After - dinner work.  Did some reading after hanging up a rack full of clothes.  Telephone for news for a while & copied for a while.  Stopped to prepare and serve supper.  After - supper work.  Finished the news items and did some reading.  After 10.

Tuesday, March 8.  Dull, dark and cloudy & snowing a good part of the time all this A.M. Brightened & finally clear this P.M.  Had the usual morning tasks to see to.  Wrote and order to Montgomery Ward & Co. for some jackets and overalls for Ernest and Father took the order and news items over to the mail box for me.  Baked bread & Kuche & made a big kettle of vegetable soup.  Evening tasks & supper.  Mended gloves since supper.  The Raleigh Man (Mr. Mardis) here today almost 10. 

Wednesday, March 9.  Colder than ever this A.M. 0 about 5:20 and 3 degrees above 0 at 7 o'clock. Did not go higher than 10 degrees above all day.  Had the usual morning tasks to see to.  Dampened down the clothes and then got my cough syrup all to boiling.  Got out my dress goods & pattern in preparation of cutting out a dress.  Just had dinner ready, when we learned we had to go for a call or wait until Joseph ret'd, so we dressed and made a call at Richards.  This P.M. Ralph & Mrs. Green and Heilde boy called. Dressed and got supper. After 10.

Thursday, March 10. A fine bright day and getting gradually warmer. The  ther. stood at 25 degrees above 0) about 5 this P.M.  Had the usual early morning tasks to see to.  Made preparations and, with father,  Joseph and Edwin motored to Uncle George's, there was no one there except Uncle George and Glennen.  We prepared a good dinner and had a nice visit anyway. home again 4:30 usual evening task, Supper wrote a letter to Ruth almost 10.  

Friday, March 11.  A fine bright day with moderating temperature.  The ther. is standing at 30 degrees this evening.  Had the usual morning tasks to see to, and gave the bed-room and especial clean-up.  Did some mending and seamed up an under slip for myself.  Dinner & after-dinner work.  Dressed and, with father and Joseph attended the funeral of Mr. Richard.  Home for the evening tasks and supper.  Read some and find myself dull and sleepy.  9:10

Saturday, March 12.  Clear and cold though somewhat warmer than yesterday.  Had the usual early morning tasks.  Got the eggs ready for town.  Baked pies, bread and kuche.  Scrubbed up a bu. basket of parsnips and got them ready for town.  Prepared and served dinner rather late.  Gave the living-room and kitchen an especial clean up and some other extra preparations for Sunday. Ernest, Vera and Jimmie here for supper and overnight.

New week

Sunday, March 13.  Some clouds and some sunshine, a strong wind and some snow flurries - quite fitful. Had the usual morning tasks to see to.  Dressed and attended church and S.S. services at Red Lion.  Earnest, Vera and Jimmie spent the day with us and we all enjoyed hovering around the stove in the living-room  Spent the afternoon in reading usual evening tasks.  Ernest left about 6 this a.m.

Monday, March 14.  A fine bright day but still very cold and a stiff cold breeze stirring.  Had the usual morning tasks and got at the wks washing in good time.  Finished about 11 o'clock as neither family had a big washing.  The men went to Franklin this A.M. & to Lebanon this P.M. to pay the tax.  I collected news this P.M. usual evening tasks, Supper.  The A.B. convened in our parlor this evening leaving about 11 o'clock.  Father & I retired in a little while. I did nothing with the news. 

Tuesday, March 15.  Another fine bright day and the temperature is moderating.  Attended to the early morning tasks and then settled down to collect the - I mean copy the news items.  Did not finish until almost 10 o'clock.   Got busy in the kitchen, clearing the table and preparing dinner.  This P.M. I did some mending and went up to visit Dan Singer who is bed-fast again.  Home for evening tasks and supper.  Looked over a lot of obituaries & letters since supper and searching for the dates of little Harold's birth and death.  

Wednesday, March 16.  Cloudy almost the entire day & threatening rain this evening.  Had the regular daily routine of household tasks.  In addition, I did the wks ironing this A. M. and this P.M.  I did some mending, put away the ironed clothes, and finished the making of an under-slip which I commenced last week.  Had the usual evening tasks and supper.  Sherley and the kiddies called just before supper.  Writing since supper. 

Thursday, March 17.  Rained during the night and quite a good part of this A.M.  clearing by noon so that the rain ceased tho' it was still cloudy.  Had the usual morning tasks to see to and then hurried myself looking through my Diaries until I found 1900 and looked up the date of little Harold's birth and death for the genealogy. Cleaned up the box and stored the Diaries again.  Dinner.  This P.M. I attended  Mrs. Crockett's funeral at Franklin . Usual evening tasks. Supper.  Some writing . Sleepy.

Friday, March 18.  Some clouds and some sunshine and somewhat warmer.  Had the usual morning tasks to see to.  Gave the bed-room an especial clean-up and scrubbed the west porch and pavement.  Got up some parsnips from under the barn, prepared and served dinner.  This P.M. I spent in sewing at a housedress for myself.  Stopped in good time to see to the evening tasks.  Baked a white cake and prepared supper. Sewed for awhile & read for awhile.  Late.

Saturday, March 19.  Cloudy and breezy almost the entire day. Raining this evening.  Had the usual early morning tasks to see to then went to Franklin with Joseph and did a little trading.  From there we went to the Howard Hatchery and got my baby chicks - 245 in number, on to Wills Becker for chick starter & dairy feed.  Home again about 11 o'clock.  Mopped up the living-room floor and got the chicks installed into the Battery brooder.  Dinner.  This P.M. I baked bread, kuche and pies.  Evening tasks.  Almost 11.  I must take a bath .

New Week

Sunday, March 20.  Bright and sunshiny this A.M.  Cloudy and breezy this P.M. Had the usual morning tasks to see to.  Prepared and attended church and S.S. services at Red Lion.    Home for the noon hour.  Polly, Harry and the kiddies here for dinner and the afternoon.  This P.M. , I went to Red Lion to practice the children for an Easter Program for next Sunday.  Home for the evening task most of which father had done supper and some reading 9:00

Monday, March 21.  Bright this A.M. , cloudy this P.M. sprinkling rain this evening and, about 10 o'clock to-night we had a heavy storm - a regular cyclone in places.  Great damage done in Butler Co. Especially Hamilton.  Many other areas were badly damaged also.  Red Lion even hard hit but we escaped here for once.  Did the wks washing this A.M. and collected items this P.M. Did some copying this evening.  Had the daily routine of tasks and the care of the baby chickens.  Tired out.

Tuesday, March 22.  Cold and cloudy with a disagreeable cold wind blowing.  Spitting some snow this P.M.  Early morning tasks & then finished copying the news for the paper.  Cleaned up the living-room and mopped the linoleum, prepared and served dinner.  This P.M. I made at some Divinity fudge which was not very successful.  Finished up my percale dress commenced last week.  Saw to the evening tasks, Supper.  Made a batch of ice-cream candy & it is a real success. Papa helped me pull it. 10 o'clock.

Wednesday, March 23.  Cloudy all this A.M. and bright this afternoon.  Had the usual morning tasks.  Spent quite a while working with the chickens - father helping me get the shelves cleaned up.   Later papa and I removed the racks and paper from our ham and shoulders, brushed off the remaining cure and hung up ready for smoking.  Prepared & served dinner.  This P.M. I did the ironing & some mending. Stored a part of the clothes. Usual evening tasks. 

Thursday, March 24. Rather cloudy all the day with some sunshine occasionally.  Had the usual morning tasks.  Then Papa assisted me in getting the baby chicks cleaned up and ready for the day.  Cleaned up the floor and set the house in order generally.  Prepared and served dinner.  This P.M. I baked a large white cake and a small one and then a batch of sugar cookies.  Usual evening tasks.  Dressed and went with the rest to the Oratorical contest where Francis spoke & did wonderfully well. home late and late to bed.

Friday, March 25.  Quite warm today.  Bright and sunny early this A.M. but by 9 o'clock it was cloudy with a stiff breeze astir.  Had the usual early morning tasks to see to.  With fathers  help, looked after the baby chicks.  Harry's arrival about 8 o'clock Polly & I finished the household tasks & then got busy with the coloring.  Got only one boiling of clothes colored before dinner.  Was in the coloring business all the afternoon and then did not finish.  Evening tasks.  Supper. Very tired. 

Saturday, March 26.  Cold, cloudy all the day.  Had the usual morning tasks to see to and the care of the poultry (baby chickens).  Baked a few pies and, bread & Kuche, made a batch of pickled eggs & boiled a small shoulder.  Scrubbed the west porch and pavements, mopped the linoleum's, gave the bedrooms an especial clean-up and hunted the eggs.  Prepared supper, Ernest, V. & Jimmie arrived late.  Colored eggs this evening, did mending & then a bath. 

End of the reading for this post

I will keep the posts at about 4 weeks postings in each post so it will not be too long. 

We thought that Sarah did a lot of work in January and February and now as we are moving further into the diary we are starting to see that Sarah has much more work that she does than we ever thought.  

This is typical for someone that lives on a farm and has a busy family life and farm animals and a garden and acres of land growing something to sell to market.  Sarah mentions the tobacco steamers on March 1. If you look up on the internet tobacco steamers it is quite interesting what they are and what they do to kill pests. Click on images to see the old steamer machines.   I can remember when some of my family grew tobacco, it was a very profitable crop to grow.  The fields were beautiful and much work went into growing tobacco.  Others in my family grew cotton or corn.  

Some of my family had small farms and they raised their children with what they grew and raised on their farm.  They raised crops not only to feed the family but the animals as well. Long rows of  vegetables and fruit and nut trees.  They grew crops to sell to market to have money to buy shoes and fabric to sew clothes.  To buy flour and the items they needed that they did not grow.  They kept the amount of eggs they needed for food and sold eggs for money. 

In the years I was growing up I remember those in my family that sewed dresses and children's clothes and men's shirts to make extra money and some took in laundry to iron.  Harvest time went from spring to the end of fall and there seemed to always be something to can or freeze. 

I spent part of my life on a small farm, I do miss rural life so I try to use every bit of our small yard here in the city to grow food.  

What are your memories?  Do you have any baby chicks this time of year as Sarah does?  Do you sew?  Bake?  Mend?  What are you learning from Sarah's diaries? 

Grandma Donna  

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