How I became a Property
Seymour Reccord, July 2/9 1914
At my earliest remembrance my father owned a flock of sheep. My sister,
the hired boy and all had an interest therein. Father said what
mattered as they had got to have clothes and it would keep them on the
farm, the children I mean.
In 1862 flour was $20.00 per barrel, cotton cloth 75 cents per
yard. My parents had teh wool carded and woven into sheets and
dress material. I remember father raised winter wheat, rye and
buckwheat, two good hogs and a beef.
He had an orchard of fine sugar maples. I remember hearing them say
they made 54 pounds of maple sugar and 14 gallons of syrup one
spring. As my memory returns to the dearest spot for me on this
earth and I think of the bountiful supply of good things we had, father
would say how well people could live were they only willing to work.
In 1862 my father set out the first 50 apple trees of the three hundred
that were on the farm. In nine years they were bearing. When my
dear father was dying, Nov. 26, 1886, the first harvest of 300 bushels
was in the cellar and barns -- apples, apples everywhere. How he
had looked forward to it. Only people that raise fruit know ther is no
end to the labor.
The spring I was 12 years old he gave me a $5 gold piece if I would
keep the worms' nests off that orchard and all were climbing and
clearing the trees from one week to another.
The woodchucks were very numerous, gnawing the bark off those young
trees. Father gave me an object lesson in setting the steel trap
there and killing the chucks. He said he would give me 10 cents a
chuck. I caught 25 that summer. Gave the meat to the chickens.
As time went on we owned all the sheep. He would smile and say "we will
make farmers of the girl." The spring I was 13 years old I had the
scarlet fever. That ended my going to school, except one term when
Nathan Wilcox kept select school. My sister Ella and myself,
Edward Alling, Edward Tucker, Nathan Warner and one more, attended it
that winter term.
When I was 12 years old I caught a trout about a finger long in the two
quart wooden measure and hurrying home, placed him in the well.
Fourteen years after, in cleaning the well, they drew it up and it
weighed a pound and a half. They had forgotten the inhabitant of the
When I was married I was given a fine heifer and her calf also.
My sister the same.
It was by my parent's example that the door of success has been opened
to me. NOt but what I enjoy seeing one neat and well dressed.
Like Farmer John, the black coat off and the old coat on. Patience and
perseverance will overcome all difficulties.
My father's farm was one of the best fenced in the town, as the old
residents all know. I am a true Oxfordite in heart, though adopted into
the town of Southbury. Hurrah for Oxford and the old maxim of early to
bed, early to risse will make you healthy, wealthy and wise.
Our-Oxford.info would be very intereted in learning
the identidy of the author of this piece and the exact date on which it