July 1880 - December 1880

July 1880 - December 1880

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Biographical Material
The Black Book
John Jay Johns Journal
Notes on Families:
Orrick Johns
Pen of John Jay Johns
Pioneer Families of MO
St. Charles, MO
Tax Records

Carl Friedrich Gauss Page
Wilhelm Ahrens Speech
Scan of Letter from Gauss
G. Waldo Dunnington Article

Chambless, Sanderson, Simmons

Disclaimer:The opinions on these pages are those of the writers and don't necessarily reflect my own views. More...

Jan 1, 1880.
I called on Colonel Cunningham, now 80 years old, bright and happy.  I wish the world a happy New Year.

Jan. 8, 1880
Wilson Ferguson called to see me about the church lawsuit.

Jan. 14, 1880.
At half past one today we went to Mamie Parks' wedding.  It was a grand entertainment, about 60 persons present, 20 of them from St. Louis.  The dinner was as fine and elegant as could be made.  Everything passed off very pleasantly.

Jan. 16, 1880.
It is amusing to hear Shirley and his Grandma (Durfee) when he says his lessons.  She is teaching him to spell and read, as she has all the boys and girls at his age (six years).  She has to do a great deal of scolding to keep him at it.  She is very fond of it and he is very bright but he is not often very ready to say his lesson and then he is very fond of being read to from a book of Bible stories.  I have been greatly interested lately in reading "Christian Life, Social and Individual", by Bayne.  His sketches of Howard Wilberforce, Foster and Chalmers are intensely interesting.  What grand Christian worthies in their day!

Jan. 24, 1880.
In St. Louis they have having a great religious meeting conducted by Mr. Moody, a celebrated lay preacher.

Jan. 25, 1880  Sabbath.
Clear and fine.  Arthur came last night.  This day is almost perfect.  Whoever saw such a January in this latitude.  Fred and Annie took dinner with us.  The only way Annie can get to church is by coming here and leaving the baby with one of our ladies.

Jan. 26, 1880.
Weather clear and lovely.  Arthur went to St. Louis this morning.

Jan. 29, 1880.
Called out at William Parks and took Shirley with me.  We read together one of Moody's sermons on the Love of God.  Very fine.

Jan. 31, 1880.
Reverend Mr. Beltser of the German Evangelical Church was buried today.  He had lived here for many years and a man of great usefulness and distinction in his church.

Feb. 1, 1880.   Sabbath.
Annie took dinner with us.  Fred went up to see Charlie Johnson on Dardenne Prairie.  He is dying of consumption.

Feb. 3, 1880.
I have 11 cords of wood at home now.  Rufus Easton was killed today at Warrenton by the cars running over him.  He leaves a wife and two children, poor and helpless.  He is an only child and his father will be greatly bereaved.

Feb. 4, 1880.
Morrison Christy is very ill with erysipelas.

Feb. 5, 1880.
Mr. Christy died last night, aged 72.

Feb. 6, 1880.
This morning Mr. Christy's funeral will take place from our church and in afternoon Rufus Easton from the Jefferson Street Church.  Miss Kate Myers came on the early train this morning.

Feb. 7, 1880.  Saturday.
Clear and beautiful frosty morning - 24°.  Mary Glenday, Fred and Annie's baby was baptized in the church this afternoon.

Feb. 8, 1880  Sabbath.
This was Communion Sabbath in our church.  Jack and Emily Martin's baby was baptized today.

Feb. 12, 1880.
Fred and Annie and Miss Kate Myers spent day with us.  Have Ed Douglas trimming by apple trees.

Feb. 15, 1880, Sabbath.
Splendid weather.  Glover and several gentlemen from town went up to the Dardenne Church to hear Rev. Thomas Watson preach on some subject connected with the evidence of Christianity.

Feb. 16, 1880.
I went up to Wentzville today to see Mr. Ben Pearce, at his request, on some business of Tom Pearce.  Took dinner there with E. Pearce, his bride and her mother, Mrs. Page.  Very pleasant people and I think he married well.  Called on brother Vardeman in Wentzville.  His wife is in very feeble health.

Feb. 20, 1880.
Called on Mrs. Christy.  She bears her bereavement with a great deal of Christian resignation and cheerfulness.

Feb. 21, 1880.
I never saw so much clear, beautiful weather in winter before.  Called in afternoon to see Frank Whitney who has been very sick.  He is up.  Called also on Mamie (Parks) Bennett.

Feb. 24, 1880.
I am preparing to build an addition to the house in which Fritz Rhaker lives on my farm.  It will cost about $200.0.  I have to do something of this kind every year.  Mr. Alderson, Jane, Glover and I dined at Fred's today.  Annie gave us a fine dinner.

Feb. 26, 1880.
Clear and mild as a May morning.  The whole day has been beautiful.  Little Julia Martin spent the day with Shirley.  I had the locust trees in my yard topped.

Mar. 1, 1880.
Circuit Court in session.  I am on the grand jury.  Mrs. Charles Johnson, the mother of Dr. Gum Johnson, was buried today.  She was 80 years old.  Miss Fannie Boyd, a member of your church, was married today to a Colonel Ashby of Fort Worth, Texas.

Mar. 3, 1880.
The grand jury rode out to the County Asylum this afternoon to examine its condition.  Found everything in excellent condition.

Mar. 6, 1880.
Went last night to hear the celebrated blind Tom, a negro born blind and a prodigy in music.  He can play anything he hears on the piano.  Had a settlement today with Kruse for rent for the year just closed and he paid me one-half the next year's rent.  These Germans are great tennants.

Mar. 15, 1880.
The St. Charles County Bible Society met in our church last night, 1st anniversary.  Good meeting.

Mar. 30, 1880.In afternoon went with Mr. Alderson and Glover to survey the line between Mrs. Durfee's and Reid's.  The wheat on her upland looks very well.

Apr.  1, 1880.
Shirley started to the public school today for the first time.  He goes into Miss Bruere's room.

Apr. 3, 1880.
I called this afternoon at William Parks.  His little boy Joseph quite sick with pneumonia.  Also at Robert Parks and Alf Stonebraker's.  Glover went to St. Peters today to attend a Republican County Convention and gave us a very amusing account of the meeting.  Dick Buckner at the head of a lot of negroes and low whites took possession of the meeting in the interest of Grant, and Bruere and his friends withdrew in disgust.

Apr. 6, 1880.
This is election day for city offices.  It is a sad commentary on popular elections to see the ignorant negroes and low whites that in a great measure control these elections.

Apr. 11, 1880.
Examined some peach blossoms this morning, six trees killed and nine alive.

Apr. 12, 1880.
Arthur bought a riding horse today from Castlio.  I rode him the country this afternoon.  He is a very fast racker.

Apr. 15, 1880.
Frank King died yesterday morning in St. Louis of pneumonia.  He was about 30 years old.  His death is a terrible le blow to his family.  Funeral in afternoon.

Apr. 25, 1880,  Sabbath.
Rev. Samuel Watson preached for us today.  Very good sermon.  The oak trees are beginning to show their leaves.

Apr. 27, 1880.
I called at Dr. Johnson's to see Mrs. Fant and also at Mrs. Ross'.

Apr. 28, 1880.
Called on Mrs. Frayser, Alf Stonebraker, whose little boy is very sick with pneumonia, also at Judge King's.

May 5, 1880.
Received a letter from Claude Johns today saying his mother and Bonnie would leave Austin yesterday n their way here and thence to Denver, Colorado.  What strange vicissitudes befall us.  My sister-in-law, Mary (Wharton) Johns, lived long in Mississippi, now in Texas, and her children are scattered in Mississippi, Texas, Rhode Island, and Colorado.

May 6, 1880.
Mary and Bonnie arrived at 11 o'clock this forenoon.  Mary looks very well indeed.  She is about 5 or 6 years older than I am, about 65 or 67.  I knew her first in 1832 at Nashville Tennessee.  I was a boy of 13 or 14 and she a young lady.  She was married to my brother Alfred in Huntsville, Alabama in 1835.

May 7, 1880.
Mary looks very young, younger and better than she did 14 years ago when she and Alfred were here on a visit.  I have had a great deal of talk about things and persons of the past.  How many old and dear friends with whom we were intimately associated in years past in Mississippi have passed away!  She and I are the only ones left of each of our families.

May 10, 1880.
Our pastor, Mr. Martin, left this morning for General Assembly at Charlotte, S. C.

May 11, 1880.
Mary and Bonnie, Jane and Myself, and Glover, took Tea with Fred and Annie.

May 12, 1880.
Mary Johns and Bonnie expect to leave for Denver this evening.

May 13, 1880.
Mary and Bonnie left last night for Denver, Colorado to visit Will . Their visit here of a week afforded me great pleasure.  She is a remarkably well preserved woman for her age, 66.

May 14, 1880.
Rode in country with my wife, Mrs. Durfee, and Mrs. Glenday.  Called at William Shaper's and also at Charlesworth's.

May 16, 1880.  Sabbath.
Cool, bright sabbath morning.  Dr. R. P. Farris, our old pastor, preached for us today.  Text:  Eph I.  "Accepted in the Beloved".  He is a master in Israel, a ready writer and a powerful speaker.  He has been for 10 or 12 years, Editor of the St. Louis Presbyterian.

May 17, 1880.
This is a great holiday among German Catholics and Lutherans, "Pentecost Monday".

May 20, 1880.
Glover went up to Mechanicsville today.  Called on Mrs. Ross.  She had an operation for cancer last week in St. Louis by Dr. Hodgen.  She is quite well.  Called on Mrs. King.  She is wretched in the extreme, inconsolable for Frank's death.

May 22, 1880.  Went up to O'Fallon today to attend a Democratic mass convention to send delegates to Moberly to appoint delegates to the National Convention at Cincinnati to nominate a candidate for President.

May 23, 1880.  Sabbath.
Clear, beautiful, Sabbath morning.  Rev. Carr Barret of Mispah Church, St. Louis County preached for us today.

May 24, 1880.
Fred, Glover and several young men went to Creve Coeur Lake to fish.  Early cherries getting ripe.

May 28, 1880.
Called on old Mrs. Sheppard.  She is quite active in mind and body, over 80 years old.  She lived in St. Charles more than 60 years ago and in the house on Main Street, next to the old St. Charles Hotel (Ruenzi's) and next to the house then occupied by the State Legislature.  The old Ruenzi Hotel has been taken down in the last few days.  It was first built of logs, large cottonwood logs, and then afterwards weather-boarded.  Many of the logs are very sound now.  It has probably been built 75 or 80 years.  Most of the old buildings, as well as old people are passing away.  This has been a delightful day.

May 30, 1880.  Sabbath.
Almost perfect day.  Rev. Thomas Watson preached for us today.  He preached two grand sermons to good congregations.  Mrs. Thomas Watson and Alex Garvin took Tea with us.

May 31, 1880.
Had my garden plowed this morning, everything growing fast.

June 1, 1880.
Called in afternoon at Mrs. Watson's to see her nephew, Mr. Fleming, a theological student from Union Seminary.  Virginia, Glover, Joe Lackland and Castlio to Tea.  At night went to the Lindenwood Baccalaureate services in the Jefferson Street Church by Dr. Niccholls.  His subject, the model wife and mother, as sketched by Solomon in Proverbs.

June 2, 1880.
Great excitement about the Chicago Convention, the Grant and anti-Grant feeling very intense.  It is the first time any man ever had the ambition and presumption to seek the Presidency a third term.  I hope his defeat will be so overwhelming as to settle that question, forever.

June 3, 1880.
Mrs. Vardeman, the wife of Reverend Mr. Vardeman of Wentzville, was buried in our cemetery today.  He is a noble man and fine preacher of the Baptist Church.  My daughter Lizzie and her children came today from Sedalia.  She has four fine children.

June 4, 1880.
Lindenwood commencement last night.  Great crowd.  No satisfaction in hearing, Miss Jewel retired from the Presidency and Dr. Irwin succeeds.  Dr. Bookes made a short address to the graduating class.

June 8, 1880.
The Chicago Convention still in session, trying to nominate a candidate for President.  Intense excitement on Grant and anti-Grant.  This afternoon Garfield of Ohio was nominated.  He was not in the race at the start.  Grant's 306 men stuck to him to the last.  He and third termism are killed off and all men ought to rejoice at it.  Such presumption and ambition ought to be crushed out in this country.

June 13, 1880.
Dr. Farris preached for us today.  "The Truth Shall Make You Free."  I took dinner with Dr. Farris at J. E. Stonebraker's.

June 16, 1880.
Lizzie and Blanche went to St. Louis today.

June 20, 1880.   Sabbath.
No preaching in our church.  Heard Dr. Vincil in the Methodist Church.

June 22, 1880.
This is the day the National Democratic Convention meets in Cincinnati to nominate a candidate for President.  Tilden has withdrawn.  His letter is one of the finest things I ever read.  It is a masterly statement of the facts of his election and the manner in which he was kept out of the office of President in 1876.

June 23, 1880.
George graduated at Princeton College today.  I went to St. Louis today with Alex Garvin to see Judge Dryden on our church lawsuit.  We have tried every way to compromise the case with the other church but all have failed and we have to let the courts decide it.  Saw Arthur and took dinner with him.  Great excitement in St. Louis about the Democratic Convention in Cincinnati.  No balloting yet.  Called on Brother Farris and had a pleasant talk.

June 24, 1880.
The result of the Democratic Convention at Cincinnati is General Hancock for President and English of Indiana for Vice-president.  Hancock is a noble man.  The only objection is that he is a military man. His record is fine.  During the late war he declared the civil authority above the military.

June 26, 1880.
Attended an exhibition of the public school children at Odd Fellows Hall last night.  Hall crowded.  Too much dress and costly flowers by the children of the rich.

June 28, 1880.
The boat race between the Princeton and Columbia crews came off today at Philadelphia, on the Schuylkill.  George was one of the Princeton crew.  Columbia won by a second.  "Old Aunt Patsy" the old negro woman (80 yrs) who had hoed my garden for some years left us this morning to go to St. Louis with her daughter.  She is certainly a faithful old creature, - great strength and activity for her age.  She became a Christian in her old age.
June 29, 1880.
My blackberries are ripe.

June 30, 1880.
The Mississippi River is terribly high, its bottoms overflowed and great destruction of property.


Source: Location of handwritten original unknown.  Transcription and excerption by Anne Durfee Gauss before 1932.   Transcription and excerption by Florence Johns in 1960s.  Transcribed to softcopy by Susan D. Chambless, 1999.

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