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December 1875


1 December 1875 • Wednesday

Wednes. Dec. 1. This is the first day of Winter, just like Spring warm and pleasant, a little damp; I am in so much trouble I never suffered in my mind, O such torture, I cannot endure much more it is a complete strain upon my nervous system all the time, Will not God be merciful to His suffering daughters? Can I not find peace in sleep even? Seemingly not for all my dreams are disturbed by fearful visions of sorrow and unrest. Today Belle came home from San Francisco. she went home almost immediately Tonight Em. did not go to the Society. Belle brought me a new dress, and presents for every one of us at home;

2 December 1875 • Thursday

Thurs. Dec. 2. This has been another of my unhappy days, how shall I resign myself to my fate in what way can I overcome these terrible feelings, I have never been so completely [p. 51] at a loss for comfort, before something within me would always tell me, what course to pursue but now I seem to feel so utterly disconsolate.

3 December 1875 • Friday

Friday Dec. 3d. this is my sister Lucy [Woodward Hewlings]’s birthday, and I suppose she really feels as if I neglected her, but I have no time or opportunity to make visits although I love my friends as well as ever. There is a new troupe comic burlesque Em. Annie went to the theatre to night to see them. Sister Adeline was here and I visited with her. O how heavy my heart is how sad and lonely I feel. When one trusts a person so implicitly and expects them to be all in all to them giving into their hands life and happiness and in return receives only neglect indifference or contumely, is it not more than weak human nature can bear? I received an invitation to the masquerade1

4 December 1875 • Saturday

Sat. Dec. 4th. Today has been stormy and unpleasant. I have been alone in the office all this week nearly except callers. I wonder if it is good for me to be alone so much; sometimes I think perhaps it is not, that it makes me more despondent and yet I cannot bear the company of uncongenial persons. I love culture and refinement I never tire of talking to those who are intellectual and can impart knowledge to me of things and places, I am not versed in, O will not God be merciful to me and give me power to overcome this terrible feeling of neglect which is preying upon me more than ever. Belle came and brought the children down and stayed all night Park was here and spent the evening. It was very wet and dismal.

5 December 1875 • Sunday

Sun. Dec. 5th. This is a fearful day my heart seems near breaking. I can scarcely disguise my feelings sufficiently to appear natural to the folks at home I never wore a long face and now I cry so much in secret, my hair is growing gray, and O my heart is heavier than ever. [p. 52]

Park and Mellie called, Belle went home I accompanied her. Annie & Lou. were out spending the evening Em went to call on Kit. <Heywoods> and afterwards to Retta Young’s birthday dinner party. She wore her new cloth coat and sealskin cap, tippet, and muff. I am all alone and much prefer it O my heart aches so. ’tis killing me by inches.

6 December 1875 • Monday

Mon. Dec. 6th, On my way to the office I met a very dear friend who spoke comfortingly to me and tried to cheer me knowing my gloomy lonely feelings and how little I had to make me feel contented with my circumstances.

I went to my daily duties with a lighter heart than I had for several days; O how good it is to have some one express even. kindly feeling for us. My heart was lighter all day for the inspiring words spoken without any consciousness of knowing the weight they would carry. The evening was a most happy one; for from the very influence and strength of the happiness imparted I could converse with my associates in a pleasurable strain.

7 December 1875 • Tuesday

Tues. Dec. 8 <7>th. Park called at the office and invited me to go to the Old Folks’ Concert in the Methodist Church, at evening, I went with him, and had a pleasant time although the concert was not a success. On returning home found Mr. Hendrie here he staid until quite late; he had brought Annie a birthday gift, this is her birthday she is 16. today she is not happy at being so old, thinks she is advancing to fast.

8 December 1875 • Wednesday

Wednes. Dec. 8th. This is the birthday of my sister Cordelia [Woodward Holden]. she is fifty to-day O how rapidly time flies, not long since we were all at home together in our short dresses and so happy. now we are scattered in half the states in the union. [p. 53]

9 December 1875 • Thursday

Thurs. Dec. 9. This morn, I felt rather unhappy but my spirits brightened considerably through the day I went out to spend the evening and had such a splendid time, one ever to be remembered, for I received a blessing full of hope and bright promise.

10 December 1875 • Friday

Friday Dec. 10, May Wells is twenty one, today. This is the Masquerade Ball at the theatre2 Em and. I have had tickets given us to go as spectators; Mine was a complimentary on account of my being an editor. We had a good time and I had considerable attention paid me, and from those whom I appreciated, We did not get home until three o’clock. A friend of ours accompanied us home.

11 December 1875 • Saturday

Sat. Dec. 11. This is darling little Onie’s birthday she is six years old. We were invited down to dinner but could not go. went down at evening with some presents.

12 December 1875 • Sunday

Sun. Dec. 12, Went to meeting3 Belle went with me. Em. went up to Mr. MacCallister’s to dinner Mell and Will were there too. I am not very well my teeth ache badly, In the evening we had the house full of young people; Rob. Sloan and Emma went to spend the evening with Miss Cook; came home about ten, and Rob. staid until very late talking with us.

13 December 1875 • Monday

Mon. Dec. 13. There was a fearful fog hung over the city and it was very cold too. Wrote to Mr. Dill today.

14 December 1875 • Tuesday

Tues. Dec. 14. This is a busy day mailing and all the multiplicity of work it brings but Miss Corneil [Cornelia Horne] and Mrs. Richards were both here to help so we got along all right. In the evening Annie & Louie went to the Tenth Ward to a party and Emma to [George] Dunfords to a childrens’ party. [p. 54]

15 December 1875 • Wednesday

Wednes. Dec. 15. Mrs. Young and Mr. Tullidge met in my office this afternoon. It reminded me so much of the private interviews of women of rank with men who held important offices of trust etc. indeed it was quite romantic in its way. secrets were talked over, peculiarities dilated upon eccentricities and all that kind of thing that mixes up and becomes a part of life in certain cir[c]les of society. We are all of us mortal, we are all subject to weaknesses, and many people at some time in their lives betray these little weaknesses either knowingly or unconsciously to their friends or their inferiors– it is a wonderful lightener of sorrow grief or unhappiness to be able to pour it out into the bosom of another and more especially one who is prepared to sympathize with us and condole with our feelings. When one gets into years more are they inclined to lean upon and require help from another source. We are all susceptible of flattery and any one who by smooth words will pour into our ears this sweet welcome praise will become more or less endeared to us, and we are ready and willing to encircle them round about with loving tenderness and pour out our hearts freely in confidence. Annie & Louie went to a birthday party at Bishop Sharp’s.

16 December 1875 • Thursday

Thurs. Dec. 16. A great many calls at the office, the Rev. Dr. Cheeney and another gentleman from Boston. We held some considerable conversation with them.

17 December 1875 • Friday

Friday Dec. 17. After being busy all day in the office Em. came in towards evening and told me she felt sick and would like me to come home as soon as I could. I hurried home nervous and excited and found her more comfortable [p. 55] than I had anticipated, I was alone all the earlier part of the evening then a very dear friend of ours came in and spent the evening with me; he was teaching me to play chess also read to me from Dr. [Samuel] Johnson’s Prince of Abysinnia.

18 December 1875 • Saturday

Sat. Dec. 18 I went to the office but was very much worried all day about Emma. Mrs. Richards came down at evening and came home with me.

19 December 1875 • Sunday

Sun Dec. 20 <19>. Will and Mell. Em. and myself went to Belle’s to dinner, and Park. We were there until evening– had a house full of young people in the evening.

20 December 1875 • Monday

Mon. Dec. 21 <20>. This is a nice day had lots of visiters in the office, went down to the dress maker’s called at Mary Jane’s and went with her to see Belle in the evening.

21 December 1875 • Tuesday

Tues. Dec. 21 This has been a most lovely day the sun shone and the air was fresh like Spring. I went over to the house to tea, my husband came this evening from Provo.

31 December 1875 • Friday

Dec. 31. Frankie was confined this morning she has a daughter4 [p. 56]

Footnotes

  1. [1]See EBW, Diary, 10 Dec. 1875, footnote.

  2. [2]The Salt Lake City Library Association’s dress ball and masquerade included a reception, grand march, carnival dancing, character acting, and a final march and unmasking at midnight, and dancing. (Advertisement, Salt Lake Tribune, 7 Dec. 1875, 1.)

  3. [3]text: A vertical slash-like line is inscribed in dark ink before “meeting”.

  4. [4]Ruby Louisa Naylor.