Author Topic: Christmas in Wisconsin, 1885/86  (Read 233 times)

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Christmas in Wisconsin, 1885/86
« on: Tuesday 26 December 23 05:27 GMT (UK) »
My Christmas present to myself was finding this video about Portage, Wisconsin - lots of great historic photos.

Wisconsin Hometown Stories - Portage
https://pbswisconsin.org/watch/wisconsin-hometown-stories/wisconsin-hometown-stories-portage-memories/

For my ancestors, Portage was the big city.  They lived some 15 miles to the north in rural Marquette County and they made occasional expeditions down to Portage for shopping or to sell some of their produce.  My grandfather wrote about a Christmas trip to Portage in 1885 or '86 when he was eleven or twelve years old.  The family was hard up because their combined house/general store had burned down in May of '85; they had lost everything.  Arson was suspected but never proven.

"... my mother wished to do some Christmas shopping and my father killed two fat cows; the quarters of these beeves were put in the box of the bob sleigh and with me driving the team, mother and I went to Portage City.  We tried to sell this beef to the various butcher shops for 3 cents a pound and were not able to do so.  In the early darkness of a winter day, we came dispiritedly back home.  As it was freezing weather some of the beef was sold locally and other we ate ourselves." 
Wiltshire:  Banks, Taylor
Somerset:  Duddridge, Richards, Barnard, Pillinger
Gloucestershire:  Barnard, Marsh, Crossman
Bristol:  Banks, Duddridge, Barnard
Down:  Ennis, McGee
Wicklow:  Chapman, Pepper
Wigtownshire:  Logan, Conning
Wisconsin:  Ennis, Chapman, Logan, Ware
Maine:  Ware, Mitchell, Tarr, Davis