As Arthur writes in 1898, High School Notes was intended to be filled with stories of high school times, but when the boys switched from Newport to Haverhill high school, the journal was filled with "Haverhill, Photographing, and Hunting sketches." The journal even includes accounts of organized football games.
Ida Farr’s journal is an account of her “daily joys, sorrows, trials, perplexities etc.” The account begins in 1872 and includes detailed stories and events of a religious, studious, New Hampshire girlhood characterized by strong family ties and warm friendships. The journal ends in 1874, with Ida budgeting and scrimping so as to be able to continue to attend High School in Newburyport.
Prologue to Ida Farr's 1872 journal written by her granddaughter Doris Nelson Newman. It provides illuminating context and family history, especially about Ida's parents Eleazer Farr and Charity Tandy, and about Ida's own childhood in Philadelphia.
The Worcester/Boston Trip consists of originaldiary entries (eventually copied by the Nelson brothers into Sketches of Our Home Life, Vol. 2) that provide a detailed account of a trip to Worcester and Boston by one of the brothers. The diary entries include details about the boys’ train rides, meeting at the First Baptist Salem Sq., a trip to a YMCA to see their first basketball game, as well as trips to the County Jail and Art Museum with Aunt Sadie.
Sketches of Our Home Life, Vol 1 is a detailed account about notable aspects of the Nelson family’s life written by Hial, Ida, Elmer, Arthur, and Walter. This volume includes an opening journal entry by Ida, poetry by Hial, including “The Joys of the Farmers Boy,” “Our Early Play Times” by Walter, “Our Cameras” by Elmer, hunting and camping entries from Arthur and Elmer, as well as other notable happenings of the family’s everyday lives.
In March of 1897, Elmer, Arthur, and Walter state that they wrote Sketches of Our Home Life Vol. 2 to “get in some of [their] later adventures.” These adventures include accounts of hunting and camping trips around New Hampshire, descriptions of the Nelsons’ “ideal camera,” “The Three Great Snow Storms of 1898,” and their perspective of the Spanish-American War.
Elmer's Hunting Diary includes stories about his hunting excursion with Uncle Oren, Arthur, Walter, and his father on Nov. 18th-19th. The account details the boys' successful hunting of hedgehogs, their construction of a campsite, and preperation of meals.
Check out Part 1 of our interview with Beatrice Jillette, granddaughter of Elmer Nelson and current resident in Goshen, NH. In this interview, she discusses her decision to move to Goshen from NYC, her various jobs held while living in Goshen for 50 years, the history of the Nelson family reunion, her archival work with the Goshen historical society, her feelings about her grandfather, growing up in the 19th century, and her reaction to the discovery of the Nelson brothers’ juvenilia.
Listen to Part 2 of our interview with Beatrice Jillette, granddaughter of Elmer Nelson and current resident of Goshen, NH. In this particular interview, Beatrice discusses the current state of imaginative play in Goshen, which Nelson brother she wished she had met/knew, her early encounter with Arthur Nelson, the resources available to the Nelson brothers during the 19th century, details about the Nelson family farm and creamery, her fondness for other Nelson relatives, and the beneficial nature of the Nelson brothers’ juvenilia collection.