THE DIARY OF HARRY B. CLEVELAND
MONDAY, JANUARY 1, 1900 - New years and not one good resolution made. This sin of omission possesses at least one virtue. I shall be saved the mortification of breaking any. The discussion as to this being the first year of the twentieth century waxes furious, and to no purpose as far as I can see. What matter it? It would add nothing to the sum of human happiness were all to finally become of one mind:- And then there are so many matters of graver import to grovel about. The weather is fairly typical of the day, cold and blustery, lacking nothing but several inches of snow to make it wholly so. Spent the forenoon at the office and the afternoon at home reading. Much taken with Stevenson's Letters. They are delightfully facinating, tinctured with just enough sad somberness to balance the authors opulent optimism. His good spirits seem nothing short of wonderful in the light of his intense suffering. His letters certainly speak of a Noble Soul. Passed the evening playing pedro. A quiet end to a quiet day.
TUESDAY, JANUARY 2, 1900 - Cold and bright. Work very light at the office and I am left wholly unemployed much of the time. Such a condition of affairs brings me no good; for I am altogether too introspective. My mind needs and should have active exercise on extraneous subjects; otherwise it becomes a veritable cesspool of morbidness. I wonder if the present year will bring to me no mental, physical, or material improvement or advancement. I am glad I cannot see through the mist. Perhaps a life is saved, that of hope. I feel like a strong man drugged, and conscious that he is bound by naught but cob-web strands; still he cannot move. Perhaps the drug in my case is only a feeble will.
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 3, 1900 - Still cold and blustery; with a light covering of snow which came last night as fluffy as down. Idling and dreaming in a wretchedly unhealthy manner. I believe I should have made a resolution on the first of the year to begin some task the completion of which should consume the year. Perhaps it is not too late now. It should be a hard one - one that would tax my energies to the utmost. I shall decide upon something right away. Stop dreaming may be. That would be just short of the impossible, and require a mighty effort. Passed the evening at Theodore K-'s and a very pleasant one too. Took along some music, and sang it all; but not well. Your hearers (or auditors should I say?) always indulge in effusive adjectives and you feel very silly and a bit out of temper; particularly when you are perfectly conscious you have sung far from well or your best.
THURSDAY, JANUARY 4, 1900 - The weather shows a tendency to moderate. Eight weeks from today will be March first. Hurrah! I hear the song- sparrow and scent the Trailing Artubus in the first laden breeze even now. So much for a good, robust, far-reaching imagination. To feel the warm kiss of summer while winters icy arms still unfold you is the result of something much stronger than hot-house philosophy. I watch the sun's dip below the horizon every night and note with a huge inward satisfaction that it is more loth to leave each day. And yet I do not wholly dislike the winter,
" For Spring would be but gloomy weather,
FRIDAY, JANUARY 5, 1900 - This has been a dull, grey, threatening day, and my feelings have been in consonance therewith. - except the "threatening", for I am too inocuously inert for that. From the house to the office is 1 1/5; miles according to the cyclometer attached to my bicycle. That distance I walk four times daily, except Sunday and an occasional ride on the train from Southport Station. Such a routine furnishes a fellow but little material for a diary and he is perforce compelled to draw upon his imagination, or make it almost entirely subjective. Otherwise the book would remain empty for all time. An aged woman was taken from the train at noon today tears streaming down her furrowed cheeks and keeping up a continued wail "Don't take me away! Don't take me away!" Two rather pretty girls accompanied her and were very tender of her. Her hair was snow white and she was perhaps 65 or 70 years of age undoubtedly demented. Her face, voice, and tears were pitiful and I have thoughts of her ever since.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 6, 1900
- Considerably warmer, and the ice in the river com-
mences to show the ravages of a temperature above
32º F. Nevertheless the skaters are there in
abundance and a jolly crew they are too.
One more warm day will make the ice but a
SUNDAY, JANUARY 7, 1900 - The blue devils, thick as fleas upon a dogs back, all day. Too much wine and cake last night unsettled my digestive apparatus. Well, I have sinned and I have suffered, so the score is wipe out. I am not prepared to admit that a lunch before retiring is not a good thing, - that is when you are up beyond ten o'clock; but there must be a limit to the amount and kind consumed, on dyspepsia, a dull head and worse spirits will attend you the day after. I have resolved to cut out cigars for a few days at least. This is really self-denial; for I have almost a full box on hand. Poured through the Stevenson Letters part of the afternoon, and dozed the remainder; but my spirits refused to rise even after the nap. Spent the evening out and that too has failed to cheer me up. On my way home from the office this noon walked up Church to Walnut and across the upper bridge home to, if possible, to promote an appetite. Only partially successful.
MONDAY, JANUARY 8, 1900
- A bright happy day, - just cold enough
to "lay the mind" and make the blood
tingle. Despite a bad night's rest
after I got under way this morning
felt fairly well; for which I am
devoutly thankful. Put in quite
a fair morning's work at the office
and feel satisfied with the manner
in which it was done. Wrote a
short letter to Mary this A.M.
nothing much in it, but it will
serve to assuage in a measure her
well high insatiable appetite for
TUESDAY, JANUARY 9, 1900
- Very cold this morning with a heavy white
frost. The weather wise construe this as
an indication of rain. And there was
a circle around the sun beside, sure
sign of an approaching storm.
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 10, 1900
- The threatened storm came with intermittent
showers today. Somewhat cooler at night
and a cold wave predicted.
THURSDAY, JANUARY 11, 1900
- Gloomy and raw. A fine rain began falling
about noon, which soon turned to sleet,
thence to snow and back to cutting sleet.
About two inches fell, and it was of
such a consistancy as to make very good
FRIDAY, JANUARY 12, 1900
- Cold and windy. Clearing at night.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 13, 1900
- Grey and cold.
SUNDAY, JANUARY 14, 1900
- About two inches more of snow
today, and the sleighing is now
MONDAY, JANUARY 15, 1900
- Warm and sloppy. Sleighing
disappearing very rapidly. Rain
promised tonight and tomorrow.
TUESDAY, JANUARY 16, 1900
- Damp and cold. Sleighing a thing of the
past, and the ice in the river about
ready to go out. So far the winter has not been
an average one as to severity, and I hope it
may so continue.
Princess Ida ---------- Mrs. Crocker
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 17, 1900
- Cold and threatening.
"Oh bury, bury,-let the grave close o'er the days that were, that never will be more. Oh bury, bury, love that all condemn, and let the whirlwind moan its requiem"
THURSDAY, JANUARY 18, 1900
- Somewhat warmer and very sloppy.
The ice in the river is gradually
rotting away and everything out
of doors resembles March rather
than mid-winter. We shall probably
have sufficient cold and snow later
on to make up for it. Nature
is never off in her balance.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 19, 1900
- Damp and threatening. No cold weather
in immediate prospect. Good for the
SATURDAY, JANUARY 20, 1900
- It has been a most miserable day.
Heavy rain at intervals, and a thick
blanket of fog over everything.
The ice has left the river, which
is now running banks full.
Indications point to colder weather
SUNDAY, JANUARY 21, 1900
- Clear and bright, and much colder.
Took my usual stroll to the
office about noon; read and napped
during the afternoon; spent the
evening at Sackett's.
MONDAY, JANUARY 22, 1900
- Warm and spring-like. I am
afraid we are storing up wrath
for the days to come in the
Look out for February and March.
TUESDAY, JANUARY 23, 1900
- Somewhat cooler, but still far from
wintry. The Weather Bureau pre-
dicts a cold wave tommorrow.
Nothing of any note has transpired today
that has any place in my diary, and
I must perforce, seek for things
outside to soil the remaining
whiteness of this page.
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 24, 1900
- Considerably colder, but altogether
too mild to answer the description
of the promised cold wave.
"A burned child dreads the fire."
THURSDAY, JANUARY 25, 1900
- Damp and mild during the day, occasional
heavy downpour of rain. Grew colder
at night and froze up.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 26, 1900
- Cold and windy. A very sudden
change and one not in the least
conducive to good health.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 27, 1900
- Somewhat warmer and considerably
SUNDAY, JANUARY 28, 1900
- Crisp and bright. An ideal winters
day, if we overlook the absence
MONDAY, JANUARY 29, 1900
- Cold and blustery. Thermometer
hovering about zero; river
gradually closing up again.
TUESDAY, JANUARY 30, 1900
- Cold and windy. Light fall of snow
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 31, 1900
- Very cold and blustery.