Archive for November, 2012

Finger Lakes Daily Life — Growing up in the 1840s

Let’s go back in time to the 1840s daily life with a young boy on a farm in Sennett NY.


Of my own childhood, say before I went to school ( which was at or about the age of 5 years) I can of course remember little. I was arrayed, not like Solomon, but most of the time in a red flannel dress with drawers and waist that buttoned behind under the dress, and an old cloth cap that came to me from my brother Cutler; having done faithful service for several years. The shoes which all the family used were the product of the village shoemaker at Mottville, Uncle Henry Harwood by name, with whom an exchange of farm produce was carried on for such boots and shoes as the family required from time to time. That they were strong and heavy goes without saying: and when holes began to appear in sole or upper, it was no disgrace to have them covered with strong and heavy “taps” and patches, making them as durable as new. Not every one of the children of the region enjoyed the luxury of shoes, as during the summertime of school in that district, I think four-fifths of all the boys and girls “went barefoot” all summer and until frost came in the fall; and they were fortunate if they “had got their shoes” to begin school with the winter term from Nov. 15 or thereabouts.

Continue Reading November 4, 2012 at 7:54 pm 1 comment

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