And so made significant . . .

around the world, and through the centuries

27 March

Jacob Bee,

‘John Maddison’s child Margaret went out of Durham to Newcastle for London to be toutcht for the evill.’

Very fiery comets


Neil Campbell,

‘3 A.M. Manheim. Passed the Rhine.’

Of Napoleon, and a turtle


Harriet Arbuthnot,

‘Walter Scott dined with us & met the Duke of Wellington. We had only Sir Henry Hardinge in addition, & our evening was very agreeable between Scott’s Highland stories & the Duke’s accounts of some of his battles. Mr. Arbuthnot met Scott some days after, who said he had been enchanted at hearing Caesar descant on the art of war.’

Rid of such monsters


Barclay Fox,

‘J Richards, Cavendish & I went on board the Alchymist with Uncle Lewis. Explored the cavern at Pennance with Cavendish in the afternoon. John Wall went back to Bridgenorth this morning to his sister’s marriage. Fine day.’

The day came at last


Barclay Fox,

‘J Richards, Cavendish & I went on board the Alchymist with Uncle Lewis. Explored the cavern at Pennance with Cavendish in the afternoon. John Wall went back to Bridgenorth this morning to his sister’s marriage. Fine day.’

The day came at last


Susan B. Anthony,
social reformer

‘Weather moderated but still cold. After walking about two miles, visiting five printing offices the Bill Printer, & Bill Poster, I returned & with Mrs. R. visited the Patent Office, the most remarkable curiosities there were the sword & Cane, the Coat, vest, & breeches of Gen. Washington worn at the time he resigned his Commission, his Camp Chest - with its appertenances - Tea Pot, Coffee Urn, Pepper dish. Salt - tea chest - Grid Iron, Tin Kettles for cooking &, also the writing desk used by him during all his Campaigns - there too was a bit of the old Tent cloth - ragged & dirty.

From the Patent Office we went to the Treasury department - thence to the State departments, here we were shown the identical letter Benedict Arnold, to Major Andre found in the pocket of Andre - signed Augustus & written as though Andre were a merchant. Saw also the Original Constitution of the United States with the signatures of the delegates from the 13 States - it was beautifully penned on Parchment one two feet square, tied together with a deep blue ribbon - at the Pattent Office saw also the original Declaration of Independence, many of the signatures were nearly obliterated, on account of having been written with poor ink.

From State Departments we went to the Presidents House took a peep into the East Room, splendidly furnished eight large gilt mirrors, in front of the White house in a beautiful park, is a very fine bronze Statue of Gen. Jackson, on horse back - mounted on a white marble pedestal - then called at Mr. Aker’s office to see the Bust of Mrs. Davis, a very fine one indeed. After dinner walked on to Capitol Hill & called on Anne Royal, a woman 85 years of age. She is indeed as Mrs. R. says, the Living Curiosity of Washington - was brought up by the Indians, married a Captain of the Army, he died, & she has printed a paper called the Huntress for the past 20 years. She has a fine, intellectual head. She lives in a small house, has two little boys whom she is educating, one boy she has instructed in Greek & Latin & Geometry. Said to me no one can know how to reason without studying Geometry learning to say Therefore, Wherefore & Because. We each of us subscribed for the Huntress, she gave us each two books, written by her many years ago. She is the most filthy specimen of humanity I ever beheld, her fingers look like birds claws, in color & attennuity, they shone as if glazed.

A great black New Foundland dog, old Cat & kittens sat at her feet & Mrs. R. says eight years ago she had in addition to these 2 Guinea hens & two little pigs running about the floor. She was writing her editorial for this weeks paper

Said I to her what a wonderful woman you are, she answered me, “I know it.” ’

See slavery as it is


William Marjouram,

‘This day news reached the town that three men had been murdered in Omata. With wilful imprudence, and in defiance of general remonstrances, they had persisted in looking for some stray sheep. As they were engaged in their fatal search, several rebels in ambush sprang suddenly upon them and put them to a horrible death. Their bodies were afterwards discovered, frightfully tomahawked, and a pair of bullocks that had been shot lay beside them. This event has caused a great sensation and a deep thirst for revenge among the settlers, each of the murdered men having left a wife and family to lament.’

Frightfully tomahawked


David Cargill,

‘It is probable that we shall have to remain 3 or 4 months in Sydney. Mrs Cargill is much weakened by the voyage. There have been many hinderances in the way of improvement in Sydney, so that religion seems to be at a low ebb. There is however the appearance of a little cloud in the heavens. The congregations though small are very attentive to the word. O Lord, I beseech Thee, send now prosperity. I feel determined through divine grace to be entirely devoted to the work in which I am engaged. May the Lord qualify me for usefulness.

It is not likely that we shall meet with anyone in this place qualified to teach us the Tonga language. Mr Orton has furnished us with a few translations: they will perhaps assist me in [ ] myself master of a small vocabulary; till I shall [have] better facilities for acquiring the language.

During the voyage we made but little progress in the acquisition of Greek. Mr Whiteley, I think, advanced as far as the end of the first conjugation. What he has acquired, he seems to understand. Mr Tucker could translate the first 12 verses of the 1st ch. of John.’

Like wolves and hyaenas


Dorothy Mackellar,

‘. . . R. came and we had a short but very successful spurt of acting the Remington play. I have been either Remington or Rags ever since - the former very angry and troubled, the latter in a passion of fear and shame. Most uncomfortable! Afternoon: Lots of shopping, got 2 nice hats. One, a darling - black straw with yellowy brown roses . . . Evening: Wrote L.B.D. Slept badly. Remington!’

I love a sunburnt country


Alex Babine,

‘Meetings have been held in the auditorium of the Totma Manual Training School by revolutionary agitators who would not have even dreamed two weeks ago of entering the school premises without proper - i.e., my - sanction. The master of the relay station tells me that German prisoners living in a house nearby claim that the war will soon be over. “And they know everything.” ’

Jailed for making soap


Joseph Goebbels,

‘Beginning with Lublin, the Jews in the General Government [Poland] are now being evacuated eastward. The procedure is a pretty barbaric one and not to be described here more definitely. Not much will remain of the Jews. On the whole it can be said that about 60 per cent of them will have to be liquidated whereas only about 40 per cent can be used for forced labor. The former Gauleiter of Vienna, who is to carry this measure through, is doing it with considerable circumspection and according to a method that does not attract too much attention. A judgment is being visited upon the Jews that, while barbaric, is fully deserved by them. The prophesy which the Fuehrer made about them for having brought on a new world war is beginning to come true in a most terrible manner. One must not be sentimental in these matters. If we did not fight the Jews, they would destroy us. It’s a life-and-death struggle between the Aryan race and the Jewish bacillus. No other government and no other regime would have the strength for such a global solution of this question. Here, too, the Fuehrer is the undismayed champion of a radical solution necessitated by conditions and therefore inexorable. Fortunately a whole series of possibilities presents itself for us in wartime that would be denied us in peacetime. We shall have to profit by this.

The ghettoes that will be emptied in the cities of the General Government now will be refilled with Jews thrown out of the Reich. This process is to be repeated from time to time. There is nothing funny in it for the Jews, and the fact that Jewry’s representatives in England and America are today organizing and sponsoring the war against Germany must be paid for dearly by its representatives in Europe - and that’s only right.’

We can conquer the world


Harold Frederick Shipman,

‘. . . I’m looking at dying, the only question is when and can I hide it from everyone?’

I’m looking at dying


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And so made significant . . .
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In general, these diary extracts are quoted as given in the published (book or online) source referred to in the reference articles. Each extract may be all, a large part of, or a small part of the complete entry for that day. I have tried to indicate where text has been removed from within a quote by the use of trailing dots in square bracket.

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The Diary Review, hosted by Blogger, publishes magazine-style articles on diaries and diarists, several times a week. Now over ten years old, The Diary Review is the secondary source for the extracts in this online anthology.