Jervis McEntee Diaries

Saturday July 24, 1886

Jervis McEntee Diary Entry, July 24, 1886, from the Jervis McEntee papers, 1850-1905, in the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution

Saturday, July 24, 1886 Went down town this morning to engage our coal for the winter. I find I laid in more than was needed last fall (21 tons). We had at least five tons left this spring. When I came back I took my father to Kingston and drove across the bridge and around the road along the creek towards the toll gate on the Sawkill road. After dinner I picked about four quarts of cherries from the two trees just outside my place near my studio. I remember how impatient I was coming home from some absence one evening, at dear Gertrude telling me she had bought four late cherry trees from Mr. Foster. I didnt know where to set them and put three of them over there and one in front of my fathers house down towards the woods. She paid Mr. Foster with a bill for more than the amount which he could not change and he never gave her back the change which was always a standing joke between us. I have picked a half bushel of cherries from one of these trees this year. Sara had on a piece of lace embroidery today which she said Gertrude worked. It always strikes me very strangely that the trifles our hands have wrought in frail and perishable materials should last after we are dust. I think if dear Gertrude had lived I would have been a much happier man. She was restful to my anxious, troublous nature and I lost my better self with her. Lucy and Sedgwick came back from N. Y. this evening. I was to meet them at the 7.10 train and had just started for the station when I met them in front of Mrs. Andersons, having come in a fast train which arrives a little earlier. I have heard all sorts of stories latterly of the impurity of our Sawkill water. Mrs. Ned Tomkins with her sister called here this afternoon and told of snakes and dead fish and other awful things being found in the pipes and that no one will drink it. Now I should have our well cleaned out on Monday and [?] that. Our board of health and our Common Council must take little oversight of public affairs I think to permit such a state of affairs.

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