Jervis McEntee Diaries

Wednesday September 1, 1886

Jervis McEntee Diary Entry, September 1, 1886, from the Jervis McEntee papers, 1850-1905, in the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution

Sept 1, 1886 The summer is gone. I feel a secret satisfaction that the days fly by. Perhaps it is because it brings the time when I hope to make some income by selling my pictures, for there seems to me some vague idea that in the future matters will be better in some way for now there is only a dead level of worry and anxiety from morning until night. Sara proposed to me today that she take the place on her own responsibility next year and try to start a curative establishment, at first in a small way and with what facilities we have here. To me this only seems entering upon a new and doubtful enterprise for which I at least am entirely unfitted. My idea is to sell if we can get any thing like a reasonable price, and to that end I am going to see Sam and see what I can do with him. Jamie and I picked the pears on the other side the road beyond the flag staff, I do not know the species but think they may be Flemish beauties although they are quite russet colored this year. It was a fine cool day with N. W. wind but still a thick smoky atmosphere. We decided to drive to High Falls and had our dinner promptly at 12 and got started 10 minutes before 1 reaching there at 3.30 Andrews, Lucy Sara and I. Fred was there as also his older brother and his wife and a Miss Norton, I presume their daughter. Lily, Aunt Christina looking very well, and Annie. We went by Lucas' turnpike and left a little after 3 coming home by Rosendale & Eddyville reaching here about 6.30. Tonight a little talk with Sara after the rest returned, in which we both agreed that we are considered rather hard and close by every one because we are trying to keep out of debt and to save the property. The young people come here to amuse themselves and know nothing of our burdens and anxieties. I confess I can take no part in any gaiety feeling as I do and I know I must seem hard and morose to the young people. Marion I understand feels injured that I objected to a tennis ground, but I objected last year and her mother felt as I did, but it fell to me to make the objections. So my poor mother used to work and serve a house full of pleasure seekers and wore out her life in kindred anxieties. I could be hospitable but I must first be just and can never enjoy what I have and cannot pay for. This makes a slave and coward of me.

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