Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Lennie Sweats While the Crowds Enjoy the Expo in Omaha

This week we again feature Lennie's daily entries in his 1898 diary.

Charles Leonard (Lennie) Davis, age 17 , of Wakefield, Nebraska spends a busy week in the wheat and oat fields doing the sweaty work of harvesting.

Meanwhile, a world's fair, the Trans-Mississippi and International Exposition is in full swing in Omaha. It will run from June 1 to November 1, 1898. While Lennie is sweating in the sun, thousa
nds are enjoying themselves at the Expo. It is indeed a grandiose event as you can see by the photos.

You can read more about the 1898 Expo at this site and this and many links to photos here (photos by F. A. Rinehart). I'm including a few of Rinehart's photos in today's post to whet your appetite. Isn't that a cool photo of the John Deere & Company exhibit? (Remember that you can click for a closer view.)

Meanwhile...Lennie writes the following. H
is words are in bold black.

Sunday, August 7, 1898
Nice Day.
Ellis Paulson came down from Norfork (Norfolk, Nebraska, some 10 miles to the west of Wakefield.)

Monday, August 8, 1898
Stacked wheat.
Fred went to town after Joe's watch.
(Lennie had recently purchased a watch for himself. It appears he has influenced Joe to do the same.)

Tuesday, August 9, 1898
Stacked wheat.
Joe went to town twice after watch finally got it.

Wednesday, August 10, 1898
Stacked wheat.

Thursday, August 11, 1898
Thrashed at Will Moers (Moore's ??)

Friday, August 12, 1898
Thrashed in forenoon.
Stacked wheat.

Saturday, August 13, 1898
Stacked oats in forenoon.
Thrashed for Dillon.

The weather has been cooperating in this labor-intensive work of harvesting wheat and oats. The Omaha Daily Bee reports daily highs in the 70s and mid-80s. This is near perfect weather for the Expo as well as for Lennie and his fellow harvesters. Next week, however, it will get hot. HOT!

Take note of these last two photos. The last photo is labeled a "war balloon". And the photo just prior is the machinery used to fill the balloon with "gas"...whatever that gas is, I don't know. Perhaps simply heated air.

Omaha Daily Bee continues to mention the Spanish American War (as well as the Expo) on a daily basis. The hostilities end this week according to the front page of the Bee.

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