Basil Stanford McNeill's Daily Journal of 1918

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Transcribed by Leo Darmitz -


Beginning 1918

Continuation of the diary of Basil Stanford MacNeill - (1918)

Note -- All text was transcribed as accurately as the condition of the diary permitted. Spelling and grammar were not altered. Punctuation and capitalization were added where it was ovbious. The dates shown were as they appeared at the beginning of each entry, but were made bold for the benefit of referencing this text.

Tues. Jan. 1st. 1918, Cold. Has been cold since Christmas. Gerty and Henry were here in evening.

Wed. Jan. 2nd., Milder. Hauled 2 loads of wood. Mother and I drove down to Sandies in evening.

Thurs. Jan. 3rd., Frosty still. Cut wood with F. Yeo. In at Klondyke. Storming and drifting in evening.

Fri. Jan. 4th., Stormy and turned to rain. Raining all day and rest of Friday night.

Sat. Jan. 5, Snowing in morning. Dark and cloudy all day. Mimie and I drove to Elmsdale in afternoon.

Sun. Jan. 6, Misting rain all day. Mimie, Ruth and I went to church in afternoon.

Mon. Jan. 7, Still misting and unsettled.

Tues. Jan. 8, Rain & snow. Janey Walace was burried today. I went up to Jim Brennan in evening.

Wed. Jan. 9, Dark and cloudy. Snowed a little. Cut wood with Frank Yeo.

Thur. Jan. 10, Fine. Cut wood in our own woods. Hector MacNeill went home to Sydney on Tuesday morning last.

Fri. Jan. 11, Fine. Cut wood on limberlost. Mr. Lockhart was here last evening

Sat. Jan. 12, Fine in morning. Hauled a load of wood. Pauline & Frank Matthews were here. Stormed wild in afternoon

Sun. Jan. 13, Fine Mary and Frank M " was here. Holson came out for her. Jack Platts was here. I went to church in the evening. Called in to Sandie Forsyth’s on way home. (Note <"> ditto marks after M. As written directly below the Jan. 12th. entry containing Frank Matthews. This refers to Matthews)

Mon. Jan. 14, Fine and cold. Cut wood on Limberlost. Mother and I went down to Aunt Maggies birthday party in evening. Clara Ellsworth was here.

Tues. Jan. 15, Fine in morning. Big storm in evening. Drove Mimie out to Gerty’s in forenoon and left her there. Shod grey mare.

Wed. Jan. 16, Cold and drifting. Was over to F. Yeo’s in evening.

Thur. Jan. 17, Fine. F. Yeo was here. Mimie came home this evening. I drove out for her.

Fri. Jan. 18, Fine. F. Yeo and I cut wood in our woods.

Sat. Jan. 19, Fine. Hauled one load of wood. Mimie and I drove down to O’Leary in evening.

Sun. Jan. 20, Fine in forenoon. Began to storm in afternoon. I came home but I had to leave Mimie and baby at O’Leary. Carl Brennan done the work for me while I was away.

Mon. Jan. 21, Fine but drifting. Was over to F. Yeo’s. Hauled one load of wood. Billy Joe McIntyre was here in evening. He is leaving for England with his battallion shortly. Gerty and Henry were here.

Tues. Jan. 22, Fine. Hauled two loads of wood.

Wed. Jan. 23, Snowing and drifting some most all day. Moore drove Mimie home in evening.

Thur. Jan. 24, Very cold. Moore and I went to Elmsdale in evening

Fri. Jan. 25, Fine and warmer. Moore went home. I hauled one load of wood. J.A.Matthews was here in evening

Sat. Jan. 26, Snowing and drifting all day. Hauled 2 loads of wood and went to Elmsdale

Sun. Jan. 27, Cold and drifting.

Mon. Jan. 28, Still very cold. Was up to Jim Brennan’s in evening.

Tues. Jan. 29, Cold and drifting. Went to woods for a load of wood in afternoon.

January and February 1918

Wed. Jan. 30, Still very cold. Hauled one load of wood. Was over to F. Yeo’s in evening.

Thur. Jan. 31, Fine but cold. Hauled one load of wood. Charlie Forsyth and Lottie were here in evening. I was down to Elmsdale in evening.

(February 1918)

Fri. Feb. 1, Still cold. Was laid up with headache.

Sat. Feb. 2, Cold again. Hauled one load of wood.

Sun. Feb. 3, Fine but cold. Walked to church in afternoon.

Mon. Feb. 4, Still cold and drifting. Hauled one load of wood. Went to Elmsdale in evening. The train has been stuck several times lately. So much snow being down that we have had no regular train service for over a week.

Tues. Feb. 5, Still cold and drifting.

Wed. Feb. 6, Cold and drifting. Hauled one load of wood.

Thurs. Feb. 7, Cold and drifting. Mimie and I drove down to Uncle Sandies in afternoon.

Fri. Feb. 8, Fine and clear but frosty. Cut wood with Frank Yeo. He and Jenis and Jim McNeill were here last night.

Sat. Feb. 9, Fine but cold. Began to storm in evening. I went out to Miminegash for fish for Uncle Sandie in forenoon. Went to Alberton with Frank Yeo in afternoon. Mother and I went down to Sandie’s in evening. It was a pretty stormy night.

Sun. Feb. 10, Fine. Walked down to church in evening.

Mon. Feb. 11, Fine. Hauled one load of wood. Doog Brennan was here in evening

Tues. Feb. 12, Fine. Cut wood with F. Yeo. Warmest day we had for a long time

Wed. Feb. 13, Blustery. Stormed last night. F. Yeo was here in afternoon.

Thurs. Feb. 14, Fine. Cut wood with F. Yeo and finished.

Fri. Feb. 15, Cold and raining. Went to Elmsdale in afternoon.

Sat. Feb. 16, Cold. Hauled one load of wood. Mother came home from Sandie’s in evening. Jack Platts drove her home and stayed the evening. Harry Matthews and Frank drove in also.

Sun. Feb. 17, Cold. Walked to church in afternoon. Mr. Styles (Methodist) preached.

Mon. Feb. 18, Fine but cold. Hauled 3 loads of wood. Mimie and I drove to Elmsdale in evening.

Tues. Feb. 19, Drifting. Began to storm in evening and turned to rain. Hauled 3 loads of wood.

Wed. Feb. 20, Raining in forenoon. Clear and thawing in afternoon. Frank Yeo and I sawed wood at (our) door in afternoon. I walked to Elmsdale in evening.

Thurs. Feb. 21, Very cold. Blowing hard. Split wood at door most all day.

Fri. Feb. 22, Very cold. 20 deg. below zero. Mother and I went to Gerty’s

Sat. Feb. 23, Fine and milder. Cut and put in wood. Went to Elmsdale in evening. Maud and Anna walked in today. Mimie, Maud and I drove up to Robert Matthews and spent the evening.

Sun. Feb. 24, Fine. Was over to Frank Yeo’s in forenoon. We all walked to church in evening. There was a meeting in Elmsdale last night for the purpose of trying to organize a Farmers Institute in Elmsdale.

Mon. Feb. 25, Very fine day. Rob Matthews, his family and I went down and sawed Mrs. Wallace’s wood for her. Finished and sawed sawed some for Hugh Williams

Tues. Feb. 26, Fine in morning. Raining at noon. We finished sawing for Hugh just after dinner. Rained hard all afternoon

Wed. Feb. 27, Fine but blowing very hard. We had the Rawleigh spice man since yesterday noon. He left this morning. We put alabastine on the ceiling of dining room today.

Thurs. Feb. 28, Fine in afternoon. Snowed some in the morning. Hugh Williams and I went out for mud load today. We had prayer meeting here in the evening.

(March 1918)

Fri. Mar. 1st., Fine. We set mud digger and took a load home. We had a big meeting in Orange hall and enrolled 75 names on the proposed Farmers Institute.

Sat. Mar. 2, Fine. Went to Grist mill to Alberton and got bob sleighs rigged up for hauling mud. Harry Platts came up for mother. Aunt Maggie is not well.

Sun. Mar. 3, Blustery.

Mon. Mar. 4, Storming.

Tues. Mar. 5, Fine. Moved digger. One load ???? home.

Wed. Mar. 6, Storming. Started from mud but turned back. Opened road across rail road.

Thurs. Mar. 7, Fine hauled one load home and hauled some.

Fri. Mar. 8, Fine moved our digger again. Mud was bad.

Sat. Mar. 9, Fine landed 2 loads and hauled one home.

Sun. Mar. 10, Storming bad.

Mon. Mar. 11, Still rough. I went to E.dale in evening.

Tues. Mar. 12, Fine. Hauled our digger off. Ice was all sink hauled one load home.

Wed. Mar. 13, Storming in afternoon. Hauled a load of mud in afternoon.

Thurs. Mar. 14, Fine. Hauled 2 loads mud.

Fri. Mar. 15, Storming.

Sat. Mar. 16, Storming. Worst drift we had this winter. We have had no train since last Saturday.

Sun. Mar. 17, Fine.

Mon. Mar. 18, Blustery. Went to Elmsdale in morning. Hauled farmers from Henry Williams in afternoon. Mimie & I drove up to Jim Brennans in evening.

Tues. Mar. 19, Drifting a little yet. Went up to Rob Matthews for clover sieves in afternoon. Cleaned the timothy.

Wed. Mar. 20, Hauled 2 loads mud.

Thurs. Mar. 21, Fine. Hauled one load mud. Frank Myers bought 16-1/2 bus oats here today. Mother went to E.dale with me and I drove out to dock. The train got up from Summerside today

Fri. Mar. 22, Fine. Hauled 2 loads mud.

Sat. Mar. 23, Storming. Hauled one load mud in morning. Went to E.dale in evening. Mr. John Brilger was killed by train at Portage last evening. John Rix lost a horse last night.

Sun. Mar. 24, Cold. High wind. Mimie & I went to church in evening.

Mon. Mar. 25, Fine. Hauled 2 loads mud. black cow had her calf.

Tues. Mar. 26, Fine in forenoon. Storming in afternoon. Hauled one load mud. Drove mother down to Sandie’s in evening.

Wed. Mar. 27, Fine. Hauled 2 loads mud.

Thurs. Mar. 28, Fine. Hauled 2 loads mud.

Fri. Mar. 29, Fine. Hauled one load mud and we beached our digger.

Sat. Mar. 30, Fine. F. Yeo and I went to Alberton.

Sun. Mar. 31, Easter Sunday. Mimie, Ruth and I drove down to Jim’s.

(April 1918)

Mon. April 1, Weather cloudy. Mother and I went up to Mary’s. Started to haul manure in the evening.

Tues. April 2, Fine. Hauled manure all day.

Wed. April 3, Fine. Hauled Manure.

Thur. Apr. 4, Cloudy. Went to Elmsdale in morning.

Fri. Apr. 5, Storming. Have erysipelas in my nose.

Sat. Apr. 6, F. Yeo and I went to Alberton. Uncle Jim was here.

Sun. Apr. 7, Fine. Mother and Mimie went to church in eve.

Mon. Apr. 8, Fine. Hauled Farmers and cleaned grain.

Tue. Apr. 9, Went to Alma with Jim with a load of hay & oats.

Wed. Apr. 10, (Killed pig)

Thur. Apr. 11, Cold. Hauled manure.

Fri. Apr. 12, Fine. Got B??? flour. Cleaned grain in afternoon.

Sat. Apr. 13, Cloudy. Mimie and Susie went to O’Leary on train.

Sun. Apr. 14, Cloudy. Went to church in afternoon.

Mon. Apr. 15, F. Yeo and I cleaned grain. Went to Arties and Sandie in the evening.

Tue. Apr. 16, Fine. Sawed wood at F. Yeo’s. Went to Rob’s in Evening

Wed. Apr. 17, Fine. Mother and I went to Sandies.

Thur. Apr. 18, Fine. Picked wheat. Went to prayer meeting in the eve.

Fri. Apr. 19, Fine. Sawed wood at A. Callaghan. Went to Rob’s in Eve.

Sat. Apr. 20, Fine. Went to corner in morning.

Sun. Apr. 21, Fine. Went to church in eve.

Mon. Apr. 22, Rained, thundered and lightened. Picked wheat.

Tue. Apr. 23, Wait.


Key dates in 1918

Monday Jan. 14, -- Aunt Maggies birthday party.

Monday Jan. 21, -- Billy Joe McIntyre was leaving shortly for England with his battallion.

Saturday Mar. 23, -- Mr. John Bulger was killed by train at Portage Mar. 22.


Names found in 1918 diary

  1. A. Callaghan -- Apr.19,
  2. Anna -- Feb. 23,
  3. Artie Matthews -- Apr. 15,
  4. Billy Joe McIntyre -- Jan. 21,
  5. Carl Brennan -- Jan. 20,
  6. Charlie Forsyth -- Jan. 31,
  7. Clara Ellsworth -- Jan. 14,
  8. Doog Brennan -- Feb. 11,
  9. Frank -- Feb. 16,
  10. Frank Matthews -- Jan. 12,13
  11. Frank Myers -- Mar. 21,
  12. Frank Yeo -- Jan.3,9,16,17,18,21,30, Feb.8,9,12,13,14,20,24,30,Apr. 6,15,16,
  13. Gerty Matthews -- Jan. 1,15,21,Feb. 22,
  14. Harry Platts -- Mar. 2,
  15. Hector MacNeill -- Jan. 10,
  16. Henry (Harry) Matthews -- Jan. 1,21, Feb. 16,
  17. Henry Williams -- Mar. 18,
  18. Hugh Williams -- Feb. 25,26,28,
  19. J.A.Matthews -- Jan. 25,
  20. Jack Platts -- Jan. 13,16,
  21. Janey Wallace -- Jan. 8,
  22. Jenis -- Feb. 8,
  23. Jim -- Mar. 31,Apr. 9,
  24. Jim (uncle) -- Apr. 6,
  25. Jim Brennan -- Jan. 8,28,Mar.18,
  26. Jim McNeill -- Feb.8,
  27. John Bulger -- Mar. 23,
  28. John Rix -- Mar. 23,
  29. Lottie Brennan -- Jan. 31,
  30. Maggie (aunt) -- Jan. 14,Mar. 2,
  31. Mary -- Jan. 13,Apr.1,
  32. Maud -- Feb. 23,
  33. Mimie MacNeill -- Jan. 5,6,15,17,19,20,23,7,Feb. 18,23,Mar. 18,24,30,Apr. 7,13,
  34. Moore Gibbs -- Jan. 23,24,25,
  35. Mr. Lockhart -- Jan. 11,
  36. Mr. Styles -- Feb. 17,
  37. Mrs. Wallace -- Feb. 25,
  38. Pauline Matthews -- Jan. 12,
  39. Rob -- Apr. 16,19,
  40. Robert Matthews -- Feb. 23,25,19,
  41. Ruth MacNeill -- Jan. 6,30,
  42. Sandie -- Jan. 1,16,26,Apr. 15,17,
  43. Sandie (uncle) -- Feb. 7,9,
  44. Sandie Forsyth -- Jan. 13,
  45. Susie Yeo -- Apr. 13,
Years Available:

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