NOVEMBER 1886 - Hiram Austin Pratt Diary
Waveland, Indiana Barber 50+ Years, CW Soldier + More
Note: These diaries were in the Waveland Public Library for decades but were disposed of by a librarian several decades ago. Luckily, another librarian's daughter (thanks sooo much Pam, at the death of her mother, Virginia Banta Sharpe found them in some belongings and gave them back for proper housing. A complete circle; however, only 14 of the 50+ diaries were saved from the library's incinerator. I'm a librarian too and thought since they'd been lost to posterity for so many years that it would be a good thing to transcribe them and give them to the world. They are currently housed in proper temperature/storage at the Crawfordsville District Public Library - typed as they were written
Note 2 : Karen Bazzani Zach (transcriber) was raised in the big 'ol town (500 people) where HA Pratt lived 5 decades before I was born. I remember the building where his little shop was and wish it was still there. What an interesting little place. ALAS! Progress !
Note 3: Some information about Pratt -- he was born in Parke County, Indiana April 20, 1840 the oldest child of eight born to Erastus & Elizabeth Allen Pratt and died October 12, 1914 in his beloved Waveland, Indiana. He was twice married, first to the love of his life (he kept a life-sized poster of her in one of his cabinets at his barber shop, even long after his second marriage) Eliza Franklin Shaw (born Oct 23, 1841 died Oct 12, 1887), and #2 to his friend, Evaline "Eva" McMains. He was very active in the community where he and Eliza chose to live. He gave generously of his time and money to the Methodist Church in Waveland. For a few years, he served as Marshall of the town. Also, he worked diligently for his Odd Fellows, Rebekah & Knights of Phythias Lodges, was for a time on the town board, and read to those who could not read from the several newspapers he was agent for. Pratt volunteered and served for three years during the Civil War (Co. B, 36th Infantry), and spent time in the dreaded Andersonville prison. He and Eliza adopted a son, Willie Franklin Stump, age two (not sure ever officially or just had permission to take him from the Poor House in Crawfordsville) and he was an amazing young boy (high grades, worked in the church, quite musicially inclined, just an ideal child) until Eliza was taken to the hospital where she was operated on for six cervical tumors (one weighing six pounds) from which she died. Willie went wild after that and he and Hiram's second wife, Eva never got along. He ended-up in Reform School (for stealing a dollar twice from Eva among other small crimes), and later sent home to die due to consumption (what we know as tuberculosis) dying in Hiram's arms on April 12, in 1894. Hiram missed Willie and Eliza more than most I do believe as he wrote about them so often in these diaries. Just wish the rest of Pratt's diaries he wrote for over 50 years as a barber in Waveland still existed :( kbz
Monday Nov 1 - $4.55. Paid John Rice I mean Tom Doss 50 cts for repairing a shovel. This afternoon I buried our cabbage. We have had the best luck this year of any before in the raising of this vegetable. We have an election for state and county officers. B&L 2.50
Tuesday Nov 2-- $5.10. There was a great crowd of men in town today. No undue excitement. I voted an unscratched republican ticket. The big contest is over Goben & Brown for Auditor of the county (Montgomery). Goben is the democrat and is accused of being short with the county. He is extreame (sic)
Wednesday Nov 3 -- $3.10. Paid 35 cts for a bit of refreshment and 70 cts for repairs on Willie's shoes. The republicans were generally successful in the election. Goben was defeated for Auditor of this county. Lamb dem for congress was defeated by Jim Johnson.
Thursday Nov 4 -- $3.15. Sent Commercial Gazette 4.77. The Enquirer 1.20. The American News Co 850. There was a big demand for papers on the account of the election. The weather continues most delightful. The report is that Goben is elected by 7 this is the latest but not definite Oil 20.
Friday Nov 5 -- $3.40. Wife was up town and bought goods to the amount of $2.43. Paid 20 cts for one pound of peppermint lozenges and 20 cts for 2 pounds of pork. About a half dozen of our citizens are at the rally at Rockville Parke County over the account of Jas T Johnson's election.
Saturday Nov 6 -- $9.65. Paid Jo Hendrickson 40 cts for the mending of a pair of shoes for my self. This morning the ground was covered with snow, it was not all gone to night as I went home. Snow was falling last night at half past 8.
Sunday Nov 7 -- $.25. I put in Sunday school collection. Willie has been troubled with the toot ache all day. I attended meeting at the Methodist Church this forenoon. The snow did not melt off very fast, though the sun shone most all day.
Monday Nov 8 -- $3.55. B&L 2.50. Lamp chimney (2) 15 cts. Lamp wick .5 cts. Shoe polish 25 cts. Tin horn for Willie 10 cts. The republicans have had a jollification here tonight over the election of Jim Johnston to Congress over John E. Lamb, democrat. Oyster 15 cts. Coal $4.80
Tuesday Nov 9 -- $3.00. Sent the Sentenial of Indianapolis $12.88. Nine sixty of it was for the Indianapolis Journal. Paid 65 cts for six and one half pounds of lard. The snow has all disappeared and the weather has become pleasant again. Rain late this evening.
Wednesday Nov 10 -- $1.30. 2 yds of calico 15 cts. A rather damp day we have had. The winter season will soon set in. My supply of coal is not yet laid in. I am to get a half carload of nut ? coal as soon as the agent can get it. Nelson Lough was in today.
Thursday Nov - $1.90. A pair of shoes for my little woman (wife). $2.25. I bought this shoes some two or three weeks ago and believe I have not heretofore made a minute of it. The weather is turning colder and indications are that we are to have a big spell of weather.
Friday Nov 12 -- $3.25. The cold wather seems to have blown over and tonight we have a clear sky and the weather greatly moderated. 25 pound sack of flour two packages of "About Abby's" rolled oats 25 cts. Calico for wife 20 cts. Minnie Haley has gone to Tom Canine's.
Saturday Nov 13 -- $8.50. Minnie Haley is now making her home at Tom Canines. I gave her in money while she was at our home $4.65. There was a dance in Milligan's Hall tonight. I write this at 12 o'clock or midnight. Have had a good days work today. Oil 20.
Sunday Nov 14 - We have had a very nice day. Willie and I were in attendance at our Sunday school at 2 ½ p.m. After noon, Willie and I took a walk which I think will be the last for the season and for aught I know it may be our last. I ate to much sweet cake this evening and do not feel well.
Monday Nov 15 -- $3.20. Paid $1 for chicken feed 5 bushel and $6.25 for 100 pounds of sugar. Willie and I were uptown before sunup this morning. I bought a piece of beef 8# for 65 cts. A bottle of vanilla extract 10 cts and 6# of granulated sugar for 50 cts.
Tuesday Nov 16 -- $2.90. Wife's new fall and winter hat cost $2.05. Paid B&L yesterday $2.50. We have had a slow rain all day. Bought a half bushel of corn for 15 cts. Had Elder Will H. Hickman, wife and Mrs. George Durham for dinner there is a ministerial convention here today.
Wednesday Nov 17 -- $2.20. A heavy gale of wind blew down the Smoke stack of the flouring mill last night. Wife done her week's washing today. The ministerial convention closed last night. The weather late tonight is turning cold. The bank safe was to have been moved today, but for the bad weather.
Thursday Nov 18 -- $6.05. Two gal of gasoline 32 cts. One large pine goods box for stove ware cupboard 25 cts. Weather cold today. The bank safe was taken to its new quarters today. It weights over 15,000 pounds. A recount in the Goben & Brown contest for Auditor is in Goben's favor 16 maj gain 7.
Friday Nov 19 -- $3. Charlie Taylor on last Monday went to Rockville with a wagon load of household goods for Mr. Crowder and on his return brought me a load of coal for which I paid him $4.25. Two pound of fresh pork 25. Chicken feed 50. ½ bu of apples .50. Weather has turned fair.
Saturday Nov 20 -- $6.70 Paid 25 cts for 6 doz pickles, Frank Kritz was sick today and I had to run alone. By 11 ½ I was done work. The weather has been real nice, requiring but very little fire. Wife was uptown and changed hats.
Sunday Nov 21 - We attended church this forenoon. After dinner I procured a team from the livery stable and we went out to see an old friend John Crutchfield. He is suffering from nervous prostration and is so badly afflicted that he is unable to help himself.
Monday Nov 22 -- $4.50. B&L 2.50. Paid $1 for the use of the livery team yesterday 20 cts for a gal of coal oil. Bro Buckles is holding a protracted meeting at New Market. The weather is fine for the time of year only a very light rain today.
Tuesday Nov 23 -- $1.60 20 cts for a gal of coal oil. The weather faired off last night and this evening it is turning cold very fast. Wife is enjoying better health this year than she was last winter. School will be dismissed Wednesday till Monday.
Wednesday Nov 24 -- $3.60. I sent $5 to the American News Co. Weather moderated today but turned colder than even tonight. David Fullenwider bought a calf for 13 dollars to be paid by Loyd McMains. Pepermint lozenges 20 cts. Wife wrote a letter to her father.
Thursday Nov 25 -- $2.50. One broom for the house 25 cts. We have had the coldest day of the season, a little snow fell. Thanksgiving services were held in the Presbyterian Church. Sermon by WT Cuppy of the Baptist Church.
Friday Nov 26 -- $2.00. Yesterday I gave Chris Alspaugh 55 cts and told him to send a sacKnights of Pythiasearless Flour to someone who would appreciate a Thanksgiving offer. Paid $4 for 50 # of lard and $2 for last months rent. We have had a snowy day.
Saturday Nov 27 -- $6.00. Paid 50 cts for a can of oysters and 3# of crackers. The work in the shop today has not been as good as I would have liked. Sow thawed a little in favorable places. Wife has a bad cold which comes very near making her sick.
Sunday Nov 28 - There was no meeting at the Methodist Church this forenoon. Willie and I were at Sunday school this afternoon at 2 ½. I remained for class meeting. We had only a tolerably good meeting. Minnie Haley was to see us after Sunday school. Tonight we went to hear the Campbellites.
Monday Nov 29 -- $3.55 Building & Loan 2.50 One gal of coal oil 20 cts. There was signs of snow or rain all day, which terminated in snow at night by 8:30. Wife was successful in getting her usual work all in good shape. Lamp chimney 05 cts.
Tuesday Nov 30 -- $1.40 one pair rubber shoes for wife 45 cts. Snow has been falling most of the day but not very fast. Willie Hauger wrote me that he was on the sick list not bedfast but taking medicine every day.