March 1859

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Tuesday 1 – Snowed some last night, but cleared off soon this morning. We sawed off three blocks and split five, and corded up three cords. Bates paid me $5 for the use of the team and $2 for use of a saw. I took four shirts to Mrs. Inman to wash: two calico and two white.

Wednesday 2 – Cold and frosty last night. It was warm and pleasant today. We split and corded up some wood, and sawed off four more blocks in the P.M. I let Bates have the team int he P.M. He has not brought the whip home.
Kitty, who is boarding here, stayed out last night.

Thursday 3 – It is somewhat cold and frosty last night, but clouded up all day. We did  no work till noon.

P.M. We split four blocks and corded them up. Preacher Groves paid me $3 for two bales of hay. He said one was moldy and got two more. I sorted two last sacks of potatoes and penned the calves away from the baled hay. I put up some oak wood for the cookstove and packed it in. Besides feeding the stock and attending to the milking, I churned a while longer on the cream in the churn. I turned it into a bucket and put in a fresh lot, and made and dressed the butter. I cleaned then up the tricks and took some fresh buttermilk and bread for supper.
Kitty is boarding tonight. It is raining, and has been since dark.

Friday 4 – Rained considerable last night, but this morning it was snowing, and had been a short time. The ground was frozen where it was not covered with snow and a cold west Wind the blew very hard and knocked down a few panels of plank fence just below the log fence. I and Jones put it up again by noon. We sawed off four blocks for wood.
About sunset John came in. I was a little surprised to see him coming through these hard snow storms. He says all’s well. He left Marysville on Monday last. I helped him fix up his bed in  my room. He played some on the old violin, and it was like old times again.
I paid $.75 for beef.

Saturday 5 – The coldest night since I’ve been up here, through warm and pleasant all day. We sawed and split and put up all 10 cords wood this week. After supper I went up to town for a strainer, $1.50 to be paid by Bass, and 1/2 pound black tea, $.50, and 1 dozen boxes matches.
Kitty was out with a tom cat all night.

Sunday 6 – Cold last night again, but not so much as the night before. Warm and pleasant all day. After the morning work was done I went to Inman’s and got two clean shirts. I put on the calico and my best boots and coat and went up to town and stayed the rest of the day. After supper Hogan, Grubs and McNabb came and set till bedtime.
John paid $.50 for candles.

Monday 7 – It rained in the fore part and snowed in the after part of last night, and the weather was mixed the most part of the day. I paid $1.50 for beef.  I churned again a few minutes, the best I’ve done so far. Supper is over, and John is fiddling.

Tuesday 8 – Snowed some last night and there was cold frost on the window glass in the morning. The back porch roof was about to fall in. We shoveled off the snow, then I and Jones shoveled the snow away from the log that we are sawing up. Later we sawed off block blocks. I shoveled away some of the snow and ice off the cellar door.

Wednesday 9 – It snowed half a foot deep last night, but it was clear this morning and continued so all day. I cut some wood for the cook stove and packed it and then went to sawing. We sawed off three blocks before we took dinner them. I whet and set the saw. We then cut off 7 blocks. John hauled one load wood for V. Martin.

Thursday 10 – Very cold last night and warm today. I, Jones cut and split two cords of wood, two feet long, and John hauled it to the printing office at $3.50 per cord. Our sledge has to be repaired. John hauled wood all day.

Friday 11 – Somewhat cold last night, yet warm today. It clouded this afternoon from the West. I and John mended the sledge by noon. I and Jones went to the woods and cut oak wood into pieces 2 feet long for the printing office. John hauled bales of hay to the preacher at $1.50 per bale. After supper I churned and did up the tricks in good order. I paid $1.50 for beef and John $.50 salaratus.

Saturday 12 – Quite cold last night. I could walk on the snow and scarcely make a track as we went out to cut wood. We finished cutting our four cords of oak and John hauled it by 1:00 P.M.
We got dinner after John hauled a load of wood and got $1. I made and baked a loaf of bread. We cleaned our room and took out the ashes, also the kitchen. We are now setting by a good oak for use in the old stove, and is John playing before bedtime.
I paid $1 for a half gallon coffee pot. Feeling rather bilious.

Sunday 13 – A beautiful warm day. After the little work was done up, I put on a clean calico and walked up to town. Preaching is held every Sunday here. There’s quite a stir in town; several citizens are over from Honey Valley.

Monday 14 – Not so cold as the night before and very warm sunny days. I paid $1 for beef. I went up to Betsy Town and paid $14 for a crosscut saw and file, and $3 for an ax handle. I came home and got 1/2 gallon linseed oil at $1.50 and 1 pound venetian red, $.50, all still to be paid.
John hauled a load of hay for Maston at $3.50, to be paid. I mixed paint and John painted one wheel.

Tuesday 15 – Not so cold but cloudy this A.M. Warm and sunny most of the rest of the day. I and Jones cut two cords oak wood in the morning. After, John hauled it to the barber and got $8.
John finished painting the wagon this forenoon. Bates paid me $2 for the use of the team and got my old crosscut saw for a few days. $.50 per day. Later I sharpened my new saw.

Wednesday 16 – Somewhat cold last night, yet warm and pleasant all day. I put the crosscut saw in order this A.M. We were cutting blocks for firewood. Jones was shoving the snow off the the log. After supper John got 4 hens of Jones at $1.75 a piece. I went to Linton’s and got a rooster. John caught the pullet today. All are in the hen house tonight.
I paid $1.50 for beef.

Thursday 17 – Not so cold last night; very nice and warm today. We split 4 cords of wood, two feet long in the A.M.

P.M. John hauled them to printing office. I and Jones shoveled the snow off the remaining two trees and chopped some and split it. John got a half pound of venetian red at $.25. I churned again at noon and dressed the butter tonight.

Friday 18 – It commenced to rain early and continued all day. I got some water and washed the parlor and dining room floors this morning. In the afternoon I went up to town and looked at game of poker: the Harverson boys, Dean, and Moore played. I.C. Lewis sent and got about 4 pounds of butter. I paid $1.50 for beef. After supper I washed two pairs of socks, then myself.

Saturday 19 – The weather is changeable but clear. I and Jones finished sawing the log in the garden. The yellow heifer had a calf out of time. We caught and milked her.
John heaped some dung from before the barn door and hauled two bales of hay to Mrs. Coffin at $4 and two cords wood to Jones. The Plumas Rangers had an election for officers. R.O. Barnett is captain, and Sawyer first lieutenant.

Sunday 20 – Cloudy some little sprinkling of snow. I let Lewis have 3 1/2 pounds butter today, and Ashheim 3 1/2 pounds yesterday. Today I got one pound black tea from Ashheim at $1. We caught the calf and had it suckle from yellow heifer in the barn.

Monday 21 – Snowed half a foot deep last night and has rained all day moderately fast and cold. The weather improved after nightfall. I’ve felt somewhat unwell from having taken cold.
John paid $2.25  for beef. I had Maston repair the old mattress; the job is to cost $1.50. John paid $1 for 6 pounds nails and $.75 for cards.

Tuesday 22 – The wind blow very hard last night. The fence and front gate was turned over, and in two other places gaps were made in the plank fence down towards Wheeler’s, and all the planks between Hundley and I is down, and some square rail as well. There has been some little snow and sunshine today. I and John mended three of the gaps and he hauled 2 cords to the preacher. He received $3 cash and $3 on credit.

Wednesday 23 – Some little snow fell, and the sun shone out. John hauled 4 cords of wood for Jones, and Jones helped me put up the fence in the P.M. I and John painted the wagon.
I heaped up some manure in the lot. John got of O’Neal 21 pounds nails at $3.50 and one gallon syrup, $2.50. In the morning I made and baked a loaf of bread for the chickens after breakfast.

Thursday 24 – Pleasant weather. John went to the mill and got some bran and chicken feed, paid $4.50. I and Jones split the rest of the tree. The heifer that lost her calf died about noon. John hauled a load of wood for Maston.

Friday 25 – Warm and pleasant. The snow is going off the valley very fast. I and Jones corded up 8 cords of wood. Woodward and Frink cut down the pine tree in the South East corner of yard on Saturday. John cut off the limbs. I made a block to pound beef on this P.M. I and John closed up around underside of the house so that the cat can not get under. Four of Duesler’s cows looked white face down and up again yesterday. I got $.50 for milk yesterday.

Saturday 26 – We turned the cattle onto the pasture as there is some naked spots, the snow being melted. I and John put up fence—the division of the square-rail fence that runs to the river, as some of it was down, and the division between us and Wheeler. We fixed up some of the fence that runs length-wise, though not all.
We took dinner, then John hauled a load of wood for Maston and two bales of hay to Mrs. Coffin for $4. I cleaned up some about the yard.

Sunday 27 – Rained considerable last night. The sun shone out some this A.M.

P.M. Snowing at intervals. After doing up the chores I dressed up, got a new pair of pants at $8.50 and a vest at $4.50 and spent the evening up in town with the gentlemen.

Monday 28 – Very cold last night and rather a cold windy day. I paid $1.75 for beef. John hauled wood for Maston. I cut some on the limbs of pine that was cut out of yard. In the P.M. I and Jones cut some oak.

Tuesday 29 – Cold last night. Ice froze in the kitchen bucket. The sky clouded up early and poured most of the day. I and Jones cut 3 cords pine. John hauled load of poles for Titus and two cords oak and two pine to Hundley at the price of $13. John hauled two spruce logs in to the lot for wood.

Wednesday 30 – Cold last night and today, with some snow. It was an inch deep this morning. I and John cut up wood out in the woods. John cut up the limbs off the tree in the yard. I paid $1.25 for beef.

Thursday 31 – Cold last night and today. The wind was from the North. It snowed a very little. I and Jones cut logs and John helped to lay the logs along the lane and against the plank fence to hold it up and keep the wagons off. John hauled all of Jones’ wood to his house out of garden. We paid him $7 for 4 hens this evening we, let Ashheim have 3 bales hay at $6, and got 1 pound of candles from him.

February 1859

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Tuesday 1 – Very windy yesterday morning. It blew down two trees on Dean’s premises, and half a tree in the American Hotel backyard–and on the new fence, too. Still stormy and very wet under foot.
Our potatoes are frozen. Duesler and I sorted three sacks. He gets the frozen ones. Later I made and baked a loaf bread–the first for me, and good at that. I was up all night playing cards. Others were betting; I don’t bet. I mended my pants and went to bed at day light.

Wednesday 2 – Slept till noon. I got up  and cooked my breakfast, or dinner, as you please. I cut some wood and packed it in for both stoves. I prepared for supper.
I paid a for box of tea $1, supped, and took a sashay round town and back home. I took a bath and mended a pair of socks John left and washed the pair I wore from Marysville. The sun shone warm this afternoon. I now turn in.

Thursday 3 – Quite frosty this morning. I did some cutting on the top of a tree that blew over in the field out in the barn lot. Then I and Truit cut down the body and are now sawing it for wood. I got 1 pound butter of Mrs. Duesler at $.75. I and Hogan have been playing cribbage. He made 10 and I 8 games. Warm sun.

Friday 4 – Clear and pleasant today. We finished sawing up the tree and split some more. I am still able to do what cooking I need, but don’t try the milking.
After quitting work I went down to the store and got a letter from my wife and John dated January 29th 1859. They both are of the opinion they had better wait a few months longer before going to Kentucky. It is all right.

Saturday 5 – Cloudy all day, a little rain.

Sunday 6 – Cloudy with some rain. I was waked up before day by  the smell of a skunk. My first thought was that the speckled pullet under the house had paid the penalty, as there was nothing else the stinking varmint could handle. But morning came and so did the hen, for her grub. The speckled cow calved last night in the barn. You ought to have seen me give it the teat–but never too old learn.
Breakfast over, I cleaned up the dishes and then went to make some bread, which I did in good style. I then cleaned up my room and looked around and found the hen house roof was about to cave in.
It was somewhat rainy all day. I closed the day by taking dinner and supper all at one time. What a pleasant time one has  by himself, with none to dispute.

Monday 7 – Rained last night and today some. I was righting the chicken house. I paid $1 for beef and $1 for candles and hauled two cords of wood to John Bass, and delivered them to Mrs. Inman. Price $3 per cord, I suppose—

Tuesday 8 – Still raining. After doing up  the chores and cooking I cleaned out the hen house and took down the old nests to put them up anew.
Overton was to see me had some chat about money matters. I told him he should be paid for waiting. I wrote a letter to my wife and John.
It was raining very hard at bed time.

Wednesday 9 – It has snowed considerably last night, and continued. By noon I finished putting up two dozen hens’ nests. It was still snowing some. After getting my dinner I put my time in downtown.
I had forgotten, I had Byers to move his six oxen to be fed elsewhere on Monday evening last. After supper, and after the milk pans and dishes were cleaned up I looked over the Argus and made the entries for the last three days.

Thursday 10 – It continues to snow a little day and night without increasing the depth but a little in the valley. I baked another loaf of bread, and am saving a churning of cream. I sold William Ford a lot of ground 75 feet wide and 70 feet long for $80 cash. It was paid to Overton. I also gave $20 more. I put a lock on the kitchen door and made a top to the churn and scalded it, ready for use.

Friday 11 – It snowed some two in deep last night and continued letting it down today, but not enough to keep it from melting away. I warmed some skimmed milk and I  and Jones has a time to get the calves to drink. I put my cream near the cook stove to sour. I next finished the hen house and put some old lime in the holes to level up. I did some work on the barn door and other places. I fixed the big gate in front and warmed some milk for the calves.

Saturday 12 – The snow fell about 1 foot deep last night, and yet in some places it nearly all went off, with a little sun and a little snow occasionally. I put a handle to the skimmer and one to an old fry pan and put some damns across the branch of the creek in the yard. It takes much of my time to feed, cook and milk, and some one has scalded Gris on the left flank. He stays at home now all the time. I let Bates have the oxen and sledge, $4.

Sunday 13 – After doing up the cattle churns I got breakfast. That over, I made up some dough and put it to baking. I then fixed for churning, which I did in good style. When in to came dressing the butter I was most desperately awkward, but I got through and had some 4 or 5 pounds. The first thing of the kind I ever did. My bread baked by noon. I took some butter, milk and bread for dinner. I put on my new calico shirt on and went up town to see the fashions. The e. clampus is all the go. It snowed last night and today as usual.

Monday 14 – The snow fell two inches deep here last night and some little today at intervals. About noon the sun shone out very warm. I cleaned the cow dung out the barn.
Earlier, Bates paid $4 for the use of the team, and Stinson $.50 for grinding two axes.

P.M. I sorted some potatoes and put all the potatoes on a plank one foot from ground to keep the gofers out of them.
There is a Valentine’s dance going on in the old courthouse. Six females.
I paid $1.75 for beef.

Tuesday 15 – It continues to storm. Not much snow fell in the valley last night, but enough to hide the old tracks. It was snowing all day, but melts as fast as it falls. Late this evening it set in very fast. I sorted and sacked up 5 sacks in all, 16 more to go over.

Wednesday 16 – Well, the storm continues. The snow fell a foot deep last night, though it is quite soft. Cloudy all day. Late in the day it commenced snowing and is still at it half past 9:00 as I write this P.M.
I did nothing outside my regular cooking feeding, and I paid for 2 1/2 dozen screws 2 inches long, $.50. I built a fire to go to bed by in my room. A pleasant life this, but none to speak with.

Thursday 17 – This indeed is a gloomy morning. From all appearances it has been snowing all night last. It is deeper in the valley than it has been this winter and falling fast. The wind blew very hard from the East at one time. I kept the two cows all day in the barn and fed them well.

P.M. I made and baked a loaf of bread and churned again, and made a good article. I bought six milk pans, cost $4.50. It snowed hard all day and up to 10:00 P.M.

Friday 18 – After snowing more or less last night the sun shone out warm most of the day. It was quite cold this morning. I sorted two sacks of potatoes. Quite cold this evening. I paid $.75 for beef.

Saturday 19 – Cold last night. About 3:00 A.M. the old Bradley barn caved in on some of Duesler’s cows, crippling them some, on account of the snow.
I sorted some potatoes. I had Smail make and paint a milk cupboard, or press. I’ve not got it home as yet.

Sunday 20 – Cold and frosty last night but warm and sunny all day. Quite a number of sleighs in town today. Dickson dined with me. The mail was brought in yesterday evening and no letters for me.

Monday 21 – Very cold last night. The sun shone but little, It soon clouded up and snowed a little most of the day. I brought home my milk cupboard. I took the top off the kitchen table and cleaned it; I will try and screw it down level. I baked another loaf of bread. I paid $2 for beef. I keep Gris chained, and have, for some days and nights. I mended my boot and blacked the pair. I broke open one of the natives’ meat houses, the first of the kind.

Tuesday 22 – It snowed two inches deep last night, but cleared up today. I fixed up the tables in the kitchen and was all day churning. I did not take the butter out of the churn at night. I sorted some potatoes. The Plumas Rangers was out today and fired several platoons in honor of the birthday of the father of this country.1 The E Clampus2 was in full blast tonight.

Wednesday 23 – Cold last night. Ice froze in the kitchen. It was snowing this morning and continued all day and until a late hour tonight.
I dressed my third churning of butter. Bates has the team a short time in the A.M. I cleaned out the calf pen and got my regular three meals.

Thursday 24 – Snowing still but the sun shone out at intervals. It cleared off near night. The preacher came down. I gave him some sweat and buttermilk. He also got two bales hay, and is to pay $3.
The speckled cow turned over Jones’ bucket of milk. Dick the French  man gave me $1 for the use of team to haul a load of wood. I hauled two cords to Mrs. Inman for John Bass at $3 per cord. I lost my pocket knife last night or this morning, through a hole in my pocket. I tore the remainder out of my pantaloons.

Friday 25 – Cloudy and somewhat stormy. We tie the white faced cow head and heel with the right foot fastened in the floor when we milk. I baked another loaf of bread and churned for the fourth time. It was hard to churn. I put a new pocket in my pants tonight and washed off all over. I paid $.75 for beef and sold to Kirlin $.25 work of buttermilk.

Saturday 26 – It snowed last night but not in the valley. Peal and Jones had the team to haul wood, a load for each, and one for me. They cut it I sorted some potatoes. Cloudy all day, but cleared off at night. John Bass found my knife and gave it to me.

Sunday 27 – Rain and snow falling very fast this morning and then turned to snow all day. The sun shone out a little before setting. After a little, it was snowing again up until a late bedtime.
I fixed a knob on the cupboard door I sewed up a rip in my boot, blacked, and greased two pairs, and put on a clean shirt, after sewing up the rips.

Monday 28 – It snowed last night and some this morning, but the sun came out warm. I paid $.75 for beef. I let Bates have the team and got Taylor’s right fore foot snagged. Jones and I sawed off 5 blocks for wood off the down tree in garden. I fixed the saw and made a bench to file on.

May 1858

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Saturday 1 – We went out to diggins. I made a riffle. We reset the boxes and put another in. While we were fixing the boxes some three new miners came to us. They wanted to work for hire or dig for themselves. So, I let William Davenport sit in as a partner. We cleaned up at noon. We got gold about $15.
I fixed up and started for the American Valley. I wore a pair of gun slippers so as not to have to carry another pair of boots back. By so doing I blistered my feet. I arrived in good time. My wife was at the old house yet, but fixing to go to the tavern to eat supper. We soon did so and took up our lodgings there also.

Sunday 2 – All seems to be going on in the same way, but I am at a loss living at the American Hotel as my wife is proprietress, and our house locked up looks rather deserted. I am made to feel very sad on account of poverty. Will it never alter in my time? I’ve moved often enough.

Monday 3 – My wife is very busy getting dinner for the public, as the grand jury is coming in town. At noon the bell was rung. Quite a number was to dine.

P.M. I handed in my report as overseer of road section number 13 and also my resignation from that post of honor. I collected $12 more in road tax and levies, minus $18. I settled with Tom Carter. He wants to call it even.

Tuesday 4 – Breakfast over, I got ready, shouldered a sack full of one thing and another—a hoe, my rifle and shot pouch, and powder horn, and my old hickory cane—and set out a foot for my diggins. I arrived there at noon after having stopped on the road from Illinois Ranch to my cabin, it being 6 miles less 300 yards. The boys were getting dinner. It over, we went out to work and got gold, some $10 or $12.

Wednesday 5 – I and Mac is alone. We were out in good time. We cleaned up the rest of the boxes, and turned a head of water into another. We was cleaning up bedrock the rest of the day. Got some 2 ounces of gold I suppose, much to the pleasure of Mac.
Before noon our William came to the cabin and got his kit and wardrobe and left  without letting us know about it. After supper I gave my check shirt a cold water rinse and hung out to dry.

Thursday 6 – Mac was mining all day. I went up Nelson Creek and bought some hose and pipe. I gave $20 for it, and I sold what dust I had on hand. It amounted to $82. I also got 40 yards canvas at 65 cents per yard, some beeswax, needles and a palm to sew with. I got to the cabin in the afternoon. I went out to help Mac clean up. We got some $20 in dust, as near as I can guess.

Friday 7 – Mac went down to the Point, got 12 pounds beef and a bottle of ground pepper,  returned, and went to mining. I was making a hose today. Later I went out and helped Mac clean up two boxes and got gold, I guess, about $8. Jake Jourdon came to see if I would let him work with us. I agreed to it.

Saturday 8 – Early in the morning Jake was up with his pick and shovel, so we concluded to repair the chimney. Mac and Jake went at it. I was sewing on hose.

P.M. Mac started for the valley and still later John came over on a horse after me. I concluded to go over and left Jake to take care of the cabin, &c.

Sunday 9 – All’s well. My wife is getting along as well as could be expected. She dislikes to be a lone, or without me. It can’t be helped.
The grand jury closed its session last night at 10:00 P.M., and at about 2:00 P.M. I, Mac and Bill Mackmanaway started for the cabin. We were there before sun down and had supper. Then the two Macs went down to the Point to get some blankets. Bill and I ran some bullets for my revolver, as there is a good deal of excitement about the Indians of late out at Honey Lake. 1and thereabouts.

Monday 10 – The Macs went to sluicing, I to making hose, and Jake to knocking old boxes to pieces. We also did some packing of boxes. I got done sewing one seam of the new hose. Jake helped me to turn it.

Tuesday 11 – The Macs were sluicing this A.M. In the P.M. they cleaned up and got gold. Jake made two sluice boxes in the A.M. After, he went down to Point after some grub. I was making hose.

Wednesday 12 – The Macs is cleaning up for gold. Jake is making flume boxes to conduct water to the pen stock. In the P.M. he went down to Point after nails. I finished the new hoes. The boys got some gold.

Thursday 13 – The Macs are cleaning up. They get gold every day. Jake is making flume boxes. He finished by noon. I cut open and sewed up some 10 feet of old hose by noon. After, I and Jake fixed four boxes to clean up about the cabins that were burned. We cut a small ditch and soon had the water running through the boxes. I put in some dirt.

Friday 14 – Bill did not work this forenoon. Nealy was cleaning up. I and Jake was cleaning up around my old cabin and got some gold.

P.M. I was panning it out. Jake was cutting poles to put up the flume. We all carried a box this afternoon. McNealy went down to the Point. He got back about dark. There was $11.37 in gold about the burnt cabins.

Saturday 15 – The Macs put up the lead boxes to the pen stock and dug a ditch. John came over with 100 pounds flour and 115 pounds of potatoes. We got gold this week $50.37 in all. Mac made a stool. Jake put up a bunk. I made a lead box.

Sunday 16 – The Macs went a-prospecting. I and Jake went out to the diggins. We got the picks and took them to the blacksmith’s. We had three sharpened and a hoe mended at the cost of $2. We went down to Point. I settled with Fox and paid him $45.37 for goods previously gotten, and $7 for Bill Mcmanaway, and $20 for John. We then got $23.50 worth of grub that is to be paid for. Mac came down and helped me pack them home. We left Jake down there playing at cards. I saw four more of the Maston family fresh from Mississippi to the American Valley.

Monday 17 – Jake and Mac cleaned up. They’ve done well. I and Bill were cutting ditches and fixing to pipe in the A.M. In the P.M we got at it, but have not a big enough head of water.

Tuesday 18 – We went out to work, but found that we had not water enough to pipe. So, I let the boys have a sluice head to run off top dirt. We took a cold dinner and all four went up the ditch and repaired it, took a box out of it, stopped the break, and mended up the flume, &c.

Wednesday 19 – We took some rags up the ditch to caulk the flume and threw out the rocks and shoveled out the dirt in places. By noon we had the water running down again and Jake helped the water in the ditch to bring the sluice box down to the diggins, but it was raining too hard. So, we left off and went to cabin and got dinner. We all stayed in as it continued to rain in the evening.

Tuesday 20 – Jake and Mac was sluicing down this forenoon. In the P.M. we were shoveling in for pay. I and Bill put two sluice boxes in ahead of the rest in the cut. Later we piped down. It rained with sunshine all day at intervals. No gold today.

Friday 21 – Sun up. Jake got breakfast as usual. That over, we—I and Bill—went to piping down. We tried our boxes for gold at noon but got none, so I closed work at this place at night. Jake and Mac got gold today and finished the place In the P.M. they moved down to another spot.

Saturday 22 – We all four worked at the same place sluicing down. Got some gold in the A.M. After did not work. John came over by noon and led Carter’s mare for me to ride over to Quincy, which I did this P.M.

Sunday 23 – At the American Ranch Hotel with my wife and John. All’s well. Not much doing in the way of hotel keeping. I spent the day in talking politics and so on. It rained quite a shower at Quincy yesterday evening before I got there.

Monday 24 – I gave John $60 to pay off Manges in Marysville. I got a letter from him and H.P. stating there was yet due $55. I then left for the mines on foot in company with four others and carried a large rope, we got over before noon and took dinner. I and David Thurington went up the ditch and up the mountain on the snow hunting for the blue lead. We brought home a mess of wild onions.
It rained quite a shower before we all went to bed. The boys we sluicing down today, but got no gold.

Tuesday 25 – Bill said he was sick and started for the American Valley. I gave him $5. Jake and Mac went to mining. I went down to the Point with Fox. I paid him for $37 for grub and sold him $48.37 cents worth of dust and got two bottles of brandy at the cost of $1.50. I came upon Roots on the hill and had to go to his mill to get a chisel and came home by noon. After grinding it, I made a windless.2 The boys got a little gold today.

Wednesday 26 – The boys are out mining, I finished the windlass and put on the rope with the tub. I made stool and so on by noon. It is still raining.

P.M. It continued much harder. the boys did not go out to work. I made another stool.

Thursday 27 – I, Jake and Mac were all out mining this forenoon. The picks are broke and dull. In the P.M. I took them down to the Point and had four upset and sharpened. I paid the smith $5. The boys were mining and got some gold —

Friday 28 – I went down with Root to see his claims on the Feather River opposite the old Bray diggins. We got the color in every pan, and once three, so we went down to the Point. I got four pounds sugar and 11 1/2 pounds beef and got home by noon. The boys had been out mining.

P.M. I made a pick handle and was to help them the rest of the day. We got gold.

Saturday 29 – Mac is at work by himself, as I and Jake is prospecting some old holes near the cabin. In the first one we could get the color every pan of the bedrock. The second we have got the water out off. We are now getting dinner.
After, Mac helped us. We got the mud out by hard tugging and got some gravel off the bedrock, but not the right kind. It has some gold in it, but I fear not enough to make it pay. So says Jake.

Sunday 30 – We indulged ourselves in lying in our bunks till late, but, breakfast over, we all set out—I and Jake for the Point and Mac up the Feather River to see some diggins. We stayed all day at the Point. I gave $1 to Pike for billiards.

Monday 31 – We all took the windlass and things belonging and carried it up on the reservoir flat and picked out a place to sink a shaft. I set to work at it myself. Jake and Mac went down to the diggins to set sluice boxes and clean up some bedrock. They got some gold and one piece about $10 by noon.

P.M. Jake was to help me sink the hole and Mac is by himself sluicing down. Dick was over to see me yesterday. All’s well. I saw a man by the name of Berry on Sunday last, that was well acquainted with W.G. in Iowa.

James Haun Diary, December 1857

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Tuesday 1 – It snowed some last night, but the sun shone out this P.M.
John went after the fan. I and John were running wheat through the fan and putting it in sacks. Dave went over to Rocky Bar and returned again. The company’s not doing much. What is to be done I can’t say. Money is in great need.

Wednesday 2 – I am up before day as usual. It looks very much like snowing. My wife got up and dressed and went back to bed again. I and John cleaned up all the wheat we could and put it the granary. We then filled up 20 sacks and fixed up the churns.

Thursday 3 – Somewhat cloudy. We loaded up the 26 sacks and the fan. John drove the oxen to Judkins’ mill. The wheat weighed 2,219 pounds. He returned home again.
Jas Vierre brought a suit against me and Duesler for $560. My part of the debt is only $145 and $17.40 in interest. I then made an assignment of all my personal property to John. Then R. Elliot brought a suit against me for $312.50 as security for E.T. Hogan.
Service at 10:00 P.M.

Friday 4 – There is no peace for me. My own troubles is more than I can bear to think of– that after all my efforts to gain some money, now at this time all is lost. But I shall keep trying. let come what will. if I know myself. It has rained quite hard all day. We’ve naught to do.

Saturday 5 – Some sunshine this A.M. and  rain and snow in the P.M. I don’t have scarcely any enjoyment, but the sorrows of the damned is our portion through life as yet. Yesterday Ray and Bevans went our bonds to stop proceedings until the money could be raised to pay off, &c.

Sunday 6 – Snowed some last night in the valley. Clear today and cool this evening.
I set up our accounts with Timberman. Not finished yet at dark.
A committee of five was in session on Friday last to investigate the charge made by Ben Forman against William Timberman. It was held by his request. The charge was having committed sodomy with Harlo Pearson. Jack Stinson and G. Miller’s testimony was that he wan ted to do the same with them. Westerland, Grubbs, Tomes, Lovejoy and myself were the committee. The charge will will be

Monday 7 – The judgement went against Hogan and I, in favor of Elliot. Hogan’s house and lot was sold to satisfy a debt to Alford. Nothing doing.

Tuesday 8 – Dave started below. John went with him to Rocky Bar and stayed all night. I settled with Timberman in full and passed receipts.
The weather has the appearance of snowing.

Wednesday 9 – The weather is unsettled.
John got home at noon. I gave a note to Burkholder for goods in the amount of $251. Carter got back yesterday has gone today to Indian Valley. John has loaded up Lovejoy’s goods to take up to Long Valley. He will start early in the morning. John is playing on the violin to I and my wife. All three of us are together.

Thursday 10 – It snowed some last night. I was up early. Breakfast was over before it grew light and John was off with team at first light. The sun shone at intervals and the day was warm.
The hind axle broke down on the other side of Martin’s. He had to get Martin’s wagon to take the goods to Spring Garden Ranch. He stayed all night there, left the goods, and came home with the wagon.

Friday 11 – It rained very hard all night and today in valley, John got home about dark. I was much vexed on account of his being out in the rain all day.

Saturday 12 – John and Carter went to the woods and got an oak stick to make a new axel. All hands worked to finish it. I was as usual not doing anything.

Sunday 13 – John and Carter finished the wagon and put the irons on again. I plaid chess most of the day.

Monday 14 – I and Trewitt worked at getting pitch wood. P.M. John helped to haul it together and split it. Maston came out and set it up in the kiln.

Tuesday 15 – I, Trewitt and Maston went out and set it on fire. John and Dick was baling a ton of hay for Ray. Got $9.50 for it.

P.M. John came out and brought us some dinner. I went in. They came in at bedtime.

Wednesday 16 – Rained a little last night. John and Trewit were out seeing after the tar. Maston has an interest in it also. I plaid some chess.

Thursday 17 – John took 1/2 bushel kraut to the Illinois Ranch. They are to pack it over to Rocky Bar to Kyler and Co.
John went by Judkins’ mill and brought home the flour from 2,219 pounds of grain: 1,434 pounds wheat flour, 393 pounds bran flour, and  303 pounds shorts — in all 2,130 pounds, a loss of 89 pounds.
I got quite drunk. My spirits is all the time very much depressed.

Friday 18 – It is clear and sunny today, for the first time in some days. I feel quite out of sorts. John and Carter has been weighing the flour and putting it away. They are now out driving their horses in Duesler’s wagon.

Saturday 19 – I am at a loss to know what I done, but I know I can’t say. Squire Reese came and stayed all night.

Sunday 20 – After breakfast he left us. I as usual was playing at chess.

Monday 21 – Carter and John was fixing a new tongue in the wagon. I am at a loss to know what to get at.

Tuesday 22 – Carter and John still pottering at the wagon. John and Dick hauled some wood for Maston to make a coal pit. Poor miserable man that I am, my hands is tied and I am in debt and can’t pay dues on all sides, and naught to pay, &c.

Wednesday 23 – The wagon is nearly finished will be done tonight. We carried 312 pounds of wheat to the brewery for the Jews at 6 cents per pound. John hauled some hay and bran to Harper. We let Maston have 111 pounds of old iron and hauled him 6 cords wood at $9.

Thursday 24 – We are preparing for a ball tonight at Quincy House. John got a new coat of the Jews at $14.
I am still in trouble. I got a letter from John Overton saying he would be over to see me about money due him as interest today, $225. I received $125 from Bourne by C. Lindley from the Marysville Express, cost $1.50.

Friday 25 – I was at the ball last night awhile, and looked on this morning I dressed up this morning some. Several drunk today of the smart ones in town.

Saturday 26 – The weather is pleasant of days and cold of nights. No snow in the valley.
In the P.M. the Plumas Rangers1 met in Quincy and was drilled some by Captain Cunningham. Lawyer Haydon was married to Miss Story this evening at Betsy Town, a runaway match the girl is 16 and the boy 32. Quite romantic.

Sunday 27 – The day of rest is here again. So far as labor is concerned I rest every day, but in my mind there is no day of rest, all is labor to me. I was dunned today again.
John and Carter went over to Rocky Bar and took a 1/2 pounds kraut to Kyler. They got back after dark.

Monday 28 – I, John and Kyler went over to  Rocky Bar. It was late when we arrived, and late before we started.

Tuesday 29 – I slept with old dad in his bunk. As usual I was up before day and built a fire. We had breakfast early. I and John went up to the Point. John and the express man started for Rabbit Creek, John is on his way to Marysville. I and F. Fox footed it to the valley and got home at noon, in time to have dinner.

Wednesday 30 – I am poking about as usual as miserable as can be, but living on hope that the day will come when I shall be free again.

Thursday 31 – The nights are quite cold, but the days are warm and sunny.
Preparations are being made by many of the  folks to go to Martin’s tonight to attend a ball. I am not in the mix. We stay at home as such amusement is too young for us.