Laura M., age 14, North Carolina
July 24, 1996

Watched TV. Practiced volleyball spiking. Excellent. Had lunch. Took Lucy on a walk. Took a nap with Mom and watched some news. Had Subway at Becca’s swim meet. Went to volleyball. Had fun. Went to more swim meet. Came to Dad’s. Showered.

Marcy S., age 20, Tennessee
July 24, 1944

Nice day. Getting hot again. It all hit me again this morning and I felt deflated before the day started. Mr. H. announced that we had a busy day ahead but people came in all morning and we didn’t get much done. I wanted to be busy, busy, busy and forget. It was an awful feeling, Diary. The mind is an odd thing but if I had controlled my thoughts and feelings before, I wouldn’t be in this state. Home at noon, trying not to think about it but not being able to help myself. Pop was out of town. Mum in good mood. By way of conversation I mentioned that “the young man” at Clure’s was going to Arabia. And that reminded Mum of Saturday night when she was over at Clure’s and he came in the kitchen. Clure introduced him to Mum and they made some remarks about Clure’s cooking. He said Clure was his second mamma. Then he made some phone calls finding out distances to Memphis, Nashville and Chattanooga. Said his boss was sending him there on business. Then he told them about Arabia. He’ll have been within 100 miles of around the world when he’s there. Mum told him he’d better go the other 100. Well, whether it was talking about him or knowing why he was going to Memphis or what, I felt ever so much better and wasn’t afraid of my thoughts going back. Busy most of the afternoon but I read a good detective story. Off a little early. Met Pop with car. Mrs. Rodgers came and we drove her home. She gave us some bananas. Pop gave me something new to think about — stay home and work for a year and try to decide what I want to train for. Now somehow I don’t think that would work and I might not want to go back to school. I hardly see how I can decide about my vocation unless I try different things, but I hate to go on wasting precious years. Oh! these decisions! Talked to Mum while washing my hair. Went over to manse backyard to dry it — in halter and shorts. Had felt fine all afternoon but began to feel like a punctured balloon again. So thought about the grass and the trees and the sky and all living things and the mind of man which is different somehow and which surely cannot die with the body. And about God who made it all. The mind is a wonderful organ. It’s something you can never touch or replace or kill as a physical thing. Home to supper about 6:30. Just as we were finishing George came over and wanted to borrow my encyclopedia E — for Einstein. So I took my life in my hands and opened the closet door 🙂 — of course, the box was under other things but we dragged it out and for once the desired book was reasonably near the top. So George settled down with Einstein’s theory and I took a bath. He left meantime for band practice. He’d gotten Max to order “Rhapsody in Blue.” I got dressed and left about 7:30 for Red Cross. I didn’t want to go but not having anything better to do to pass the evening, decided I’d do my patriotic duty. Mum and Pop went to the ball game at 8:30. Pop made some runs — the Legion is ahead now. No one was in Red Cross rooms but I found the key, opened up and started to work. Few minutes later Bea and Katherine Rockwell came. I had my hair up in pins and a scarf and felt like a skinned onion — no doubt resembled one, too. We talked and had fun. The band sounded much better than usual and the skating rink actually had some new records. By 9:30 they’d make 62 and I 58 so we packed up and left. Met Harvey and discussed him. Beautiful night. I walked up to their corner and then on home. Reggie had a date with Anne B. tonight. Mum and Pop home. To bed and felt quite wonderful, free and at peace.

Henry S., age unknown, Michigan
July 24, 1886

I painted the porches again this forenoon and the wheels of the double buggy this afternoon. Kate and I drove over to Van Ripers this forenoon. We found grandfather Queal very bad off, he can’t live long.  *(R. Henry Scadin Collection, D.H. Ramsey Library Special Collections, UNC Asheville)

Abbie B., age 22, Kansas
July 24, 1871

I wanted to wash but it was cloudy. I baked however, and sewed. J. R. will not be here this week, he will help Jake make hay. It is much pleasanter for me, when brother and I are alone. Jake rode by this eve with a big bunch of onions, when I asked for my pennys worth, he said it was up at the house, and if not worth coming for, I could not have it. Then he threw a big onion at me, and rode on.

I am to help Mrs. Rose with her sewing some day this week.  Mr. R wanted to know who  Observer was that wrote up the picnic foot the paper.

*(kansasmemory.org, Kansas State Historical Society, copy and reuse restrictions apply) 

Cornelia H., age 26, North Carolina
July 24, 1862

Finished Sam’s pants. My teeth trouble me a good deal. They have not been easy long at a time for a month. Willie is no better. My head aches badly this evening. No news from Richmond. All quiet.  *(Fear in North Carolina: The Civil War Journals and Letters of the Henry Family, Eds. Karen L. Clinard and Richard Russell, used with permission.)

Anita W., age unknown, Texas
July 24, 1860

I took a drive towards the San Pedro. I suffered all the morning with toothache, finally Rawl took me in the buggy to the Office for the Captain, and he took me to Dr. Kingsbury. In the afternoon we made several calls. Mr. McDonna the old gentleman and his two sons took tea with us.

*(Diary of Anita Dwyer Withers, 1860-1865: Electronic Edition. This work is the property of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text.)

Samuel P., age 27, London
July 24, 1660

To White Hall, where I did acquaint Mr. Watkins with my being sworn into the Privy Seal, at which he was much troubled, but put it up and did offer me a kinsman of his to be my clerk, which I did give him some hope of, though I never intend it. In the afternoon I spent much time in walking in White Hall Court with Mr. Bickerstaffe, who was very glad of my Lord’s being sworn, because of his business with his brother Baron, which is referred to my Lord Chancellor, and to be ended to-morrow. Baron had got a grant beyond sea, to come in before the reversionary of the Privy Seal. This afternoon Mr. Mathews came to me, to get a certificate of my Lord’s and my being sworn, which I put in some forwardness, and so home and to bed.

*(The Diary of Samuel Pepys M.A. F.R.S., edited by Henry B. Wheatley F.S.A., London, George Bell & Sons York St. Covent Garden, Cambridge Deighton Bell & Co., 1893.)