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horse fiddle, school punishments, leather spectacles, Thomas Jefferson Cummings, bit, buckwheat grains
A set of handwritten, copied notes from the Daily Times, compiled by Alfred L. Shoemaker, originally dated November 14 1881 to February 8, 1882. The notes cover topics such as noise-making implements at a wedding and various forms of school punishments.
Nov 14, 1881 Myerstown. “The wedding of Mr. J. Painter was largely attended last Thursday evening. The enjoyment of the festivities was much interfered with by tremendous nuisance made by a lot of boys outside, with horse fiddles, balls, winnow mills, and similar implements. Mr. P. offered the crowd all possible inducements to leave him and his guests in peace, but all in vain. The racket was kept up till a late hour of the night.
Nov 15, 1881 ½ page column on Tom Collins (Thomas Jefferson Cummings). “The New York Sun yesterday” had article on him.
Nov. 16, 1881 “It is the same old horse now driven around this part of the country by a lone peddler and general scavenger.”
Dec 10, 1881 School Punishments
“A punishment not unusual in place of the rod was to stand the culprit on some elevation where all the school could see him, with a “bit” in his mouth, consisting of a stick of hard wood with a string in each end and these tied behind the head so that it could not be taken out of the mouth.”
“Still another and a very cruel one - to make the scholar bare his knees and kneel down upon a lot of buckwheat grains placed on the floor. Those acquainted with the peculiar triangular shape of a buckwheat grain will readily appreciate this punishment.
“With some of the old masters the leather spectacles were a favorite prescription. This consists of a piece of hard leather with two round holes in it for the eyes and the leather cut partially through so that it could be drawn apart and made to saddle the nose after the manner of the spring glasses now so much worn, but owing to the hardness of the leather the pressure upon the nose was anything but pleasant.”
Dec 16, 1881 Pennsylvania Barns
Dec 31, 1881 The Pennsylvania Dutch long article
Feb 8, 1882 Mountain Sport: Wild Turkey Shooting
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Shoemaker, Alfred L., "Notes From the Daily Times, 1881" (1950). Alfred L. Shoemaker Folk Cultural Documents. 226.
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