Dec. 24. Everyone is complaining of the coldThose who have been here the longest, saythis is the coldest weather they have seen inCal. I wonder they complain, for it doesnot seem cold to me. We were invited to takeChristmas dinner at Elmer's today, becauseFather is to be away tomorrow. So we wentover and dined on turkey and pudding.All enjoyed it well. After dinner, Iwent out to see them brand horses. Ihad never seen anything of the kindbefore, and always imagined it to be avery cruel operation. But after having seenit performed, I judge not quite sohardly of it. The horse to be branded isfirst tied and blindfolded, then thebranding - iron, heated red hot, is placedon the skin, which burns through thehair and leaves its print. The brand ofthis ranch is a pad-lock - indicative ofthe name of the owners.Dec. 25. Tuesday, Christmas day. Cold andcloudy. This morning, Father wished meto mend a rent, a very bad one, in hisrubber coat, So I sat down immediatelyafter breakfast to do it. Afterwards.I had not finished my homework, beforecallers from Camps Sees came in.Dec. 25. They had been to the Christmasball at Mr. Wood's, some 10 miles fromhere, and called here as they came backnot because they were acquainted witheither of us, but because they were fromNashua, and had there known BrotherFranklin, There were two gentleman andtwo ladies. Mr. Davis and his sisterMrs. Ballard, her daughter and a Mr.Delans, whom I supposed likely enoughto be paying attention to the young Miss.After they had gone, we prepared ourselves togo and dine with Mr. and Mrs. Holmanwhere we had been invited, Arrived therewe found Mr. and Mrs. Shepard, theirson and his wife and two children, Mr.and Mrs. Simpson with 5 children andMr. Butter. The time passed pleasantly inconversation. Among other things, Mr.Shepard said he thought it right to tryto puzzle me, as I was an old school mistress.I was not afraid of him in the leastSo he questioned me in Arithmetic andGrammar, and then wished to know someof my views on theological subjects. I answeredhis questions readily, and he seemedsatisfied. What his motives were in doingso, I cannot imagine. Soon after dinner.
Original diary dimensions: 13 x 20 cm.
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Delia Locke, diaries, women, diarist, California, Locke-Hammond Family Papers, Lockeford, CA, Dean Jewett Locke, rural life, rural California, 19th Century, church, temperance organizations, Mokelumne River Ladies' Sewing Circle, temperature recordings, journal