January 1, 1896

Isaac is now 59 years of age.  He’s been ill and is worn out.  It’s time to think about leaving the farm and moving to Wellman.  Five of his children are married.  He has four daughters and two sons living at home.  Two of his daughters are of marrying age, and will marry in 1897 and 1899.  He has a successful farm and stock business that, when sold, would give him the funds to purchase a home and have a comfortable future.  As Isaac lists his yearly crop and stock yield for 1895, he ponders whether he should sell the farm.  Isaac is conflicted because he probably loved being a farmer and stockman, and he was a very sentimental man.

Wednesday January 1st 1896  A moderate winter day  I am feeling poorly with the grip but got better in the PM  Harve went & cut the ice for the cattle to drink at the other place  I have had poor health the past year & getting rather worse the latter part of the year  Mag also has poor health  the rest have been well  Another of our girls has been Married in the year past & I think has done very well & Sylvia is well settled in life  I have fed my Colts & out horses very little as yet & my 19 Stock Cattle have fed themselves in the Stalks at the other place  I have 17 horses & colts  I have 67 head of Cattle vis 16 cows 14 fat steers coming 31 beef heifer 19 Stockers coming 2 & 17 Calves all doing well  I have 46 head of hogs 12 brood sows & 34 last spring pigs which I am fatting with my steers & they are nice ones  I have raised the past year the best all round crop of corn I ever raised about 3000 bu on between 60 & 70 acres & real good sound corn & we got it geathered very early & in good order  had both cribs perfectly full & 2 10 ft rail pens full as high as we could throw with a Scoop  22 rails high & a big wagon load in the barn & about 9 acres of Shock corn north of the hay barn  My oats crop was just splendid all except about 16 or 18 acres East that I bought an extra kind of seed & paid 10c Extra per bu & it was poor stuff straw & all I had about 38 acres of oats & 1467 bu machine measure & very big measure  I have both bins full & a double Stall half full & 55 bu of nice rye on 3 acres  I raised plenty of punkins few squashes plenty of turnips fair patch of melons  only about 8 barrels of apples at picking time  very few blackberries  about 60 quarts of raspberries canned  plenty of plums Especially Damsons  we raised plenty of potatoes for our own use  very fair ones  the best flour Sells for $1 to $1,10 per sack of 48#  I have very little money on hand & Collections are slow  I have $15 in Cash & notes & assets as follows $7699,00 notes & bank stock & I have interest due me & money on hand $441,75 $2000 of this money is my wifes & I owe Harve a Small Amount this with the corn & oats on hand & the 14 fat steers & the 30 fat hogs for sale makes a good showing  I am not going to try to farm as much next season & perhaps never again  My health has Steadily declined the past year  I am not near as able as I was a year ago & I don’t feel as tho I Shall Ever do any more hard work & I don’t feel that there is any real need of working if I can enjoy as good or better health by not working  I have been trying hard lately to make up my mind whether to stay on the farm longer or leave it & go to town  I cant so far make up my mind to leave my old farm where I have raised all my family made all I have & took much comfort


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