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Finding My Journal

Thank you all for visiting my site yesterday – I had 100 views!  I don’t know about the rest of you bloggers, but that fact makes me forget that I have any other worthwhile work to do, and makes me want to think of what to write to y’all today.   I do love that contraction.  (I’m not a Southern Belle, but I just love using it in honor of PT, who reads my blog every day.  Thanks PT.)  Don’t you just love her dimples.  She’s amazing, but that’s another story. One of the unanticipated benefits of retirement is to have my library all in one physical location.  That means I found my journal that I kept during my Colonial Williamsburg Teacher Institute.  These are VERY cool.  They are handmade – even the paper.  I was afraid to write in it at first because I didn’t want to mess it up. So I may bore you from time to time, sharing my reflections that accompany the hundreds of photographs I took while I was there, and have just sat in my Facebook gallery, my external hard drive, and who knows where else.  I didn’t want to spend time too much time writing about them because I didn’t want to get my facts wrong. And I didn’t want to spend time researching when I knew that somewhere I had written downs tons of notes.  Ah the bane of not having a photographic memory.  Just think what a joy I could be to y’all if I could just remember things perfectly.  Actually I remember large bits of things, but somewhere they get jumbled, and my facts get scattered, and come out incorrect.  Then, because I am supposed to be somewhat of a history guru, I am embarrassed when I err, and my guru credibility is lost.  But I meander…In addition to being Clementina Rind for the week, I was also assigned to be on the Military Committee.  I had no recollection of that for several reasons, but I wrote it in my journal, so  it made SOME impression at the time.  Clementina is still with me 4 years later.  I was really into taking pictures of 18th century military life.  I have 97 pictures, and NO Notes!!  The sad thing is that we participated in amazing feats of war.  I accidentally hit the woman next to me in the face with my wooden musket when we were standing in formation practicing loading aiming, and firing our supposedly harmless weapons.   I didn’t volunteer to attempt loading the cannon.  It was real.My entry for the day we went to Yorktown reads, “I forgot my journal when we went to Yorktown. ”  

Ever consider what it might have been like if you got a toothache on the battle field – or even back home in the 18th century?  When I was a  dental assistant, believe me none of our instruments looked this vicious.  Of course, without my notes I don’t know if these WERE dental instruments or something with which to take out bullets.  Whichever, the look malicious, and I know there was no anesthesia involved.  No laughing gas.  No Novocaine. No topical anesthetic to numb your gums BEFORE you got a shot of NO Novocaine!!!  So maybe these wicked tools for the little balls that came out of muskets.  The point is I FORGOT TO TAKE MY JOURNAL.  Do you see how disastrous the effect merely four years later???  Can you imagine if I waited 40 years to label my precious pictures?George would never have forgotten HIS journal.  This desk was center stage in his tent.The troops did eat, and what you see in the background is part of the outdoor dugout oven.  This piece of equipment, as I recollect, was not a branding iron, but had something to do with cooking.  Wish I had taken my journal.This was my 75th picture.  I bet you are wondering what’s in the box.  Well, if I had brought my JOURNAL, I could have told you, but NO, it rested safely in my room where it wouldn’t get dirty.  (It still isn’t dirty.)  Judging from the pictures sequentially around this photo, which I can see, but I won’t bore you with, the box has something to do with canons.  My solid hypothesis is that it holds cannon balls.  Where is Mike Lebsock when you need him?  Probably sitting in his Colonial Williamsburg home office writing memoirs in HIS JOURNAL.  Or maybe he’s sketching.  He actually painted the middle picture right above his books.  What a talented SJVCSS President we have!!!  When I got back I quoted Clementina as saying, “I have watched as this revolution became inevitable.  I published Thomas Jefferson’s first declaration.  I strained to see this conflict that I might rejoice at our freedom.  Freedom of the press (of course that was of GREAT interest to Clementina), which we have as British citizens, but which could as easily be taken from us, as surely as taxation without representation has already been taken.  I regret that I did not live to report this great event.”Don’t try to read THAT quote, I photographed a page that had better handwriting!!!  Then I did what I do most in my journals.  I introspected.  “Its amazing to me to understand what bravery and sheet luck has play a part of my privilege of being born and raised as an American woman.  This privilege becomes clear and dearer as I age and I realize the foundations that were laid to make my life possible.”  I still stand by that statement.The moral of this story.  Buy a journal.  Take your journal with you.  Write in it.  Don’t lose it.  Then share it with someone.

18 replies »

  1. Forgetting (very beautiful) notebook. So Babs. I can relate.

    Photographic memory? Nah, don’t need it. It’s groovy going through journals… I don’t have any of my own, though. I have stories, but I remember them word-for-word with pictures. No need to bother. Sir thinks I have a eidetic memory. Doesn’t help me find lost hats, though, as you know, so I don’t agree.

    Found this post tremendously entertaining. Also, loved the art, wonderful work by Mike Lebsock. (I had actually quickly scrolled through the post first before reading, and forgot (see what I mean? Sir is living in delusion land). So, when I came to Mike Lebsock’s photo again, as I was reading, and I gawked at the photo to pick out the painting he’d done himself, and I began to marvel. “Oh, I’ve seen that painting before! Why even from that tiny picture there I could describe it perfectly in full detail! Whoa!” then as I go along…there’s the photo of his painting…)

    The frowning lass with the cannon, is she the one you accidentally bopped with your musket??

    Those tools are terrifying.

    Yes…George would remember, and the handwriting would be far more exemplary than mine….I bet he never had huge public falls either…like on his way to sign the D of I, I highly doubt he took a spill and landed on his quill bending the feather just before reaching the dear document…never…Do you know what? I would…oh yes, trip right over air, I bet. Ben. F would be embarassed by the burst of bugling laughter involuntarily erupting from his thin white lips, rising well above the other wigged heads…I’m sure my wig would have also have gone flying, too…sailing right into T. Jefferson’s very surprised and somewhat lugubrious face…John Witherspoon would have been aghast. Still, the document would get signed and history would not be spoiled, not even by me. They DID go about donning wigs did they not?

    The box…cannons, really? I instantly thought, “It must have a body in it.”

    Sorry, I don’t know what is awry with me tonight.

    Fantastic post, well done! I was grinning away. Excellent words at the end, very fine indeed!! And what a fascinating experience. I would have loved it. Thank you for this, groovy,

    -Autumn Jade


    • Well, I agree with you about GW. He was much to sober, but Ben. He probably would have been right down on the floor with you, laughing as he fell. TJ. I don’t sense much of a sense of humor in him, I’d say most of those guys were pretty serious. Have you been to JG Burdette’s sight yet? She writes wonderful historic stories. She did a great one the other day on Alexander Hamilton. You’d love it. Stay off the floor, Autty. It’s so great to have you back. I’ve missed you!!!


      • Haha, I think you are right about Ben F., and his spectacles also would have gone flying, as well, in the process, he seemed prone to losing them, if I remember correctly XD No I have not been to her site yet, but definitely will check her out!! Missed you too doll cheers,

        A. Jade


  2. Urgh! The image you left in my brain with being your pulled the old fashion way! Marsha you brutally slaughtered me with your words. That’s a compliment, by the way. 😀
    I’m a forgetful person. I don’t know how many times I’ve been advised to write notes, and I have proven it’s a great practice and told myself many times that I should continue to do it. But I guess I’m really the kind of person who lives on the edge. I don’t bring a journal with me nor kept a sticky note handy.


    • Obviously I don’t either, but sometimes it would be handy if I had!!! Thanks for always making such thoughtful comments! I’m always glad to slaughter you in a complimentary sort of way!!! Any time!


      • Congratulation on the 100 views. Have you seen my statues in Florence post. One of the key points I included there is when I participated on the Weekly Photo Challenge. After that I get to meet most of the WP community. I just thought you’d be interested in doing that. If not, it’s all about sharing what you do, where you’ve gone and will be, and who you are. Have a great blogging days ahead of you.


  3. I have a beautiful journal, unsullied by my handwriting. One day, I’ll write something, but for now, I prefer typing. At least I can read it. I haven’t checked my stats, but I guess that 100 views in one day, must be good. Congrats to you. I’m so grateful that I didn’t live in the 18th century. Those medical tools really look like instruments of torture. 🙂


  4. Hello tchistorygal, I appreciate your interest in and passing on my blog. I have been trying to start a journal for another way to get mu thoughts down for years. Time to get it started ! That empty journal has been tucked away all that time 🙂





Hi, I'm Marsha Ingrao, a retired educator and wife of a retired realtor. My all-consuming hobby is blogging and it has changed my life. My friends live all over the world. In November 2020, we sold everything and retired to the mile-high desert of Prescott, AZ. We live less than five miles from the Granite Dells, four lakes, and hundreds of trails with our dog, Kalev, and two cats, Moji and Nutter Butter. Vince's sister came with us and lives close by. Every day is a new adventure.

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