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Saturday - Gul
A fresh wind all night at N°Et Morning and forenoon very cloudy, with a mizzling rain, but not enough to wet the ground — wind from the same q' or a little more northerly, continuing all day, which made it cool and disagreeable.
After an early breakfast I set out on my return home, & taking Muddy hole in my way, returned about 10 O'clock.
Found that all the large (Indian) Peas I had, had been sown with the drill plow yesterday, at Dogue run whh only compleated 8 rows after which they proceeded to sow the small black eyed peas & finished with ут
That the drill plow in the neck had finished planting the common corn in the cut in which it had first begun and was proceeding in the end adjoining, and that the Muddy hole people had just begun to Hoe the new ground (for corn) in front of the Home House.
That the Ferry Plantation had begun to Plant corn, in the common mode, for want of the drill plow, which was otherwise engaged. And that an indifferent hd had been made of catching Fish since Wednesday last.
Sunday — yeh Thermometer at 56 in the Morn® 67 at noon and 66 at night. Clear with the wind fresh but not cold, from the no west, all day — Towards night it died away & inclined to the southward more, — M' Porter, M: Murray, (Young) M' Bowen, and a Captain Aitkins came (by invitation) to dine with us to day, and returned to Alexandria in the evening. — just as we were about to set down to Dinner DoctCraik, his wife, son William, and Daughters (Miss Craik & Miss Nancy) came in Dined & stayed all night.
Monday - Sen
Rid to Muddy hole & Dogue run began at the first to cross the lists in order to Plant corn — the early corn & Indian Pease at this place were coming up. Sent a carpenter to put a new axle & do some other repairs to the Barrel plow at Dogue run.
Sowed 3 rows of the Border grass seeds in the inclosure behind the stables, adjoining to, and just below the Cape wheat & next the fence –
Next to these was near a row of yellow clover - the first was given to me by Colo Fitzhugh' of Maryland and the other by Colo Chao Carter of Ludlow.—these rows were two feet a part, and the seeds sown very thin in the rows that the more seeds might be saved from them for yo next years
On Saturday last the dead cedars in My Shrubberies were replaced by live ones just taken up. Doct" Craik, wife & family went away after breakfast.
In the evening a Capt. Whaley from Yohiogany came in on some business respecting the affairs of the deceased Col Crawford — and Hugh Stephenson to whom I gave under cover to Tho® Smith Esq' (my lawyer in that country) a Bill of Sale and the letter woh enclosed it which the said Colo Crawford had sent me in the mo of May 1774 as security for what he owed me, and to indemnify me for my engagements in his behalf, to see if they were valid & would cover the debt he owed me, as they never had been recorded. — I also gave him the statement of my acct with Colo John, and the deceased Hugh Stephenson which, in behalf of the latter he promised to pay and to obtain the other moiety from the first. — He also promised to send in my negros which had been hired to Gilbert Simpson, or bring them in himself, in consequence of this assurance I gave him an order on Maj* Freeman to deliver them.
Tuesday - gbo
Clear & warm, with but little wind and that did not spring up till about 11 o'clock, first from the N° Et shifting afterwards to So Et
Rid to all my Plantations between Breakfast and dinner.
Found the Flax in the neck had come up, and full thick, and that the grass (seeds) rather millet) obtad from Colo Cary had come up, but were of the saint foin, Burnet or rib grass appeared to be springing - finished planting, with the Barrel plow, the early corn in the furthest cut in the field for experiments, in the neck, and not having enough to compleat another cut in the same field I ordered all the remaining part of it to be drilled with common corn, accordingly, about noon, the intermediate rows in the middle cut which had been left for the early corn were begun to be planted with the other. — At this plantation also the People had begun to break up the intervals in the most grassy places between the listed ground, but I set a plough to crossing in order to plant corn in the common way in the field intended for this purpose.
At Dogue run, the hands there were also hoeing up the intervals between the corn rows.
i Col. William Fitzhugh.
The ground, by the heavy rains which fell about 14 days ago, dry weather, and baking winds since, had got immensely hard, so as that seeds which were not already up, could not force through it, and them which had come up previously could not grow.
Capt. Whaley went away before breakfast.
M' George Digges, and Miss Digges came to dinner & returned in the evening - at which time my Brother John came in from Berkeley.
But little wind in the morning a red sky at the sunrising, and some clouds and appearances of rain, which soon dispersed.
My Brother and Mi George Washington went up to Town after Breakfast and did not return till the Evening.
I rid to the Plantations at Muddy hole - Dogue run, and Ferry – also to the fishing landing — at the first I found the early corn had come up very well, except where the ground was hard, and baked; but the birds were pulling it up fast. The Peas were also coming up, but not so regular as the corn, and of the Siberian wheat, Barley and Oats which had come up some were cut off by a bug, and the rest looked indifferently, and in many places very thin the Barley which looked strong & of a good colour at first, had got to be yellow, and the end of the blades in a manner dead. No appearance yet of the Potatoes & Carrots coming up.
Ordered Morris (at Dogue run) to discontinue his 5 furrow lists and go on with three, as I might (the season advancing fast) get my corn in the ground before it was too late.
The first appeared to be quite done running, but I ordered my People to continue at landing trying a haul on every tide untill Saturday and between whiles to attempt clearing a landing for sein hauling above the Ferry landing where the Channel approaches nearer the shore and it is thought good for shad.
Began to plant corn in the common way at Muddy hole.
Thursday 11" Thermometer at 55 in the Morning — 58 at noon - and 58 at night.
Morning Cloudy, with great appearances of rain. about 11 O'clk it began to rain, which fell moderately for about ten minutes & ceased but continued Cloudy the remainder of the day — wind at So East but not very fresh.
John Augustine Washington.
My Brother set off on his return home after breakfast, passing through Maryland.
Mrs. Washington and Fanny Washington ? went up to Abingdon & returned in the evening.
I rid to the Plantations at Muddy hole, Dogue run and Ferry between Breakfast & dinner and crossed to that in the Neck after. dinner — The ground particularly when they were drilling corn at the last, and indeed, at Dogue run wch was stiff, & had been plowed when it was too wet was astonishly hard and lumpy, and in which it is much to be feared the corn will never rise.
Friday, 120 Thermometer at 58, in the morning 67 at noon — and 65 at night.
Cloudy in the Morning, about noon the sun shone but was soon obscured again, & it remained cloudy all the latter part of the day — rain exceedingly wanting — at home all day.
Finished about noon planting with the Barrel Plow the middle cut in my field of experiments at the River Plantation.
Saturday — 19th Thermometer at 60 in the morning 64 at noon — and 64 at night.
Lowering all the forepart of the day with drops of rain (but no more) now and then. — Evening clear — wind variable, but mostly at So Et
I rid to Muddy hole, Dogue run & Ferry plantations; and to the fishery at the latter.
Ordered my People to quit hauling — and bring home my seins.
Finished (yesterday evening) planting corn with the barrel plow in the Cut intended for experiments at Dogue run. Also finished planting Corn in the Middle cut (this day abt 3 O'clock) at Muddy hole in the common way — putting a little dung in each hole, in the poor parts of the ground.
The Cotton seeds, Pumpion seeds, & Timothy seeds (which were sowed on the oats) at Dogue run, were coming up.
Sunday — 14
1 Martha Washington. ? Frances (Bassett) Washington, the wife of George Augustine Washington.
G. A. Washington and his wife, and M* Shaw 1 went to Pohick Church, dined at M. L. Washingtons. and returned in the evening – Colo Gilpin, The Rev. M' M Quire, M: Hunter & M: Sanderson came here to dinner and returned afterwards.
Began yesterday afternoon to pen my sheep, & milch cattle at the Ho House in the hurdles which had been made for the former.
Monday — 151 Thermometer at 64 in the morning — 68 at noon — and 68 at night.
Clear Morning with but little wind — about 10 O'clock Clouds arose to the westward, and at 11 it began to thunder; about 12, a small, & very light sprinkling of rain fell, after which it cleared, but about 4 O'clock in the afternoon another cloud arose from whence we had a slow & moderate rain for about 3 quarters of an hour which softened the top of the ground (before much baked) and must be of great service to vegetation — Wind what there was of it came from the So West.
I rid to the plantation in the neck and to Muddy hole, at the latter perceived the Irish Potatoes to be coming up. — at the former the Plows having over taken the dung carts (which were carrying out dung to spread in the corn rows) I set them to plowing and planting the Peas, ordering the alternate Pea rows to be planted at the same distance (viz 18 Inches) a part, as the corn is, intending the intermediate ones to be drilled, that is, planted at 6 inches a part to see which mode will be most productive.
with whom an agreement was made to bring a load of good & clean shells having brought very bad and dirty ones they were refused.
Maj: G. Washington went up to Alexandria on business — Doct? Craik returned with him (by desire) in the afternoon to visit Mrs Washington, who had been troubled for several days with a pain in her shoulder.
Tuesday — 16th
Morning lowering — about 10 O'clock it thickened and thundered and before eleven began to rain & continued showery till near two O'clock after woh it ceased but towards (night) it thickened & began to rain again — Wind for the most part Easterly but not strong. — The rain of Yesterday and what fell today appear to have wet the ground sufficiently.
1 William Shaw served as Washington's secretary from July 26, 1785, until the arrival of Tobias Lear on May 29, 1786.