Rural Diaries

Good news: The Rural Diary Archive, a project at the University of Guelph to showcase rural life in Ontario 1850 to 1900 through diaries, has added two Fleming diaries to its online collection. Many thanks to the Library and Department of History at the University of Guelph.

Jennie Fleming kept a diary of her trip by train to Toronto and Bowmanville in June 1869, and jotted some notes about her return voyage from Marquette, Michigan in 1871. Her profile page is at https://ruraldiaries.lib.uoguelph.ca/jean-jennie-fleming

Roy Fleming, her nephew, when only 12 years of age, kept a short entry diary throughout 1891, the year his mother died. It’s poignant and informative about rural living from a young person’s view.  https://ruraldiaries.lib.uoguelph.ca/roy-franklin-fleming

Scans of both diaries are available, as well as transcriptions of the content accompanied by explanatory notes.   Click on the Browse tab to locate the images and transcriptions.

More diaries  can be easily discovered by reviewing the list of diarists.   Filter by county, ethnicity, religion or occupation.

For Meaford in Grey County, Mary (Williams) Trout appears. Married to James Trout, a land agent in Trout and Jay and a prominent member of the Church of  Disciples of Christ, she also figures into Fleming Family history because her sister, Elizabeth, married William Fleming. Mary kept a diary from 1867 to 1920 about her family, the church, and activities. Occasionally  Mary mentions her sister “Lib”, children Lincoln and Ottie,  and trips to Owen Sound. The Rural Diary Archive has posted the 1867 diary. The complete set  of scans and transcriptions is online at the Grey Roots Museum and Archives site: Mary Williams Trout: Diaries of a small town lady.

 

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