Below are excerpts from a diary my great grandfather kept between 1897 to 1956. He was born March 20, 1875 and started keeping a diary a few months before he turned 22. He lived in East Texas during the time and he worked on survey crews and did a lot of surveying as a young man. His first entries in his diary in January of 1897 are crude chaining notes. Later it is clear he is operating the transit and level. As the year of 1897 wears on his diary becomes more detailed. Below is a selection of passages involving a survey of the Hiram Brown League in East Texas in late 1897.
Tuesday 14, December 1897
Went to work for Pepperkorn Surveying the McKinney & Hiram Brown Leagues. Went to Mrs. Keiths and could not find corners, went to Mrs Bs and started South.
Wednesday 15, December 1897
Finished South of line and ran East & stopped. Started from Mrs Bs and meandered marsh all the rest of day. Stopped below Merriman at night.
Thursday 16, December 1897
Started at Merriman and meandered river below old fort. Cut across marsh to Mrs. Keiths started South on lines stopped North of Jack Beaumonts house.
Friday 17, December 1897
Started at Beaumonts and ran South below Railroad the turned East and stopped in Fublie R. it came a northern about 9 oclock and misted rain all day.
Saturday 18, September 1897
It rained fine mist all morning went out in evening and ran 2160 varas on South line of McKinney began to mist rain and we went into cars.
Sunday 19, December 1897
It misted rain all morning but the sun came out late in the evening. Rode Bruce to Beaumont after mail. Paul Harry & Larry came over.
Monday 20, December 1897
Went to see AB in morning and went out and ran East line of McKinney in the afternoon. It was cloudy and misted rain nearly all day.
Tuesday 21, December 1897
It rained all day I loafed and cut a little wood went to see AB and help him load some shell.
Wednesday 22, December 1897
Went out on line and worked till noon and it was very cold and rained and we came into the cars.
Thursday 23, December 1897
Went out and started from Hoovers and ran East to corner and then ran North to corner of B. Then meandered marsh the rest of the day. Pepperkorn killed 7 quail as we came home.
Friday 24, December 1897
Went from Bluff to Beaumont in buggie and it rained all day and was muddy as hell. Got home 7 oclock wet and cold. Paid Maggie Vanwormer 30 dollars for Dixie.
Saturday 25, December 1897
Spent a dull day at the Bluff. Kate Mary Clara and Ivy came over in the evening went to Nelsons to a party had a very good time came home with Mary.
Sunday 26, December 1897
Went to see Henry Histler in the morning and AB and I took a walk up to Smith Bluff in the evening it was cloudy.
Monday 27, December 1897
Went out with Pepperkorn and worked all day but Northeast corner of Hiram Brown league was in the lake I and AB got very cold coming home sun shown all day.
Tuesday 28, December 1897
Worked all day running down lake the first thing this morning and it was cold and frosty. The Klondikers have a good stitch of land.
Wednesday 29, December 1897
Finished survey of Hiram Brown League in morning and went to Beaumont in the afternoon with AB to see the Night of the Circus it was a good show.