Sullivan Lathrop and Bass carting earth into the Yard from the Ground which is to be thrown into the High Way over against my House. The old Appletree, probably an hundred Years of Age is to fall.
Billings and Thomas Lathrop mowing in the Meadow.
Six hogsheads of Lime, 50 Gallons each were brought home Yesterday for Manure. I have it of Mr. Brackett, at 15s. the Hdd.
I am reading Dr. Watsons Apology for the Bible in Answer to T. Paines 2d Part of Age of Reason.
That Appletree, over the Way, to which the Beauty and Convenience of the Road has been sacrificed for an hundred Years, has now in its turn, with Apples enough upon it to make two Barrells of Cyder, fallen a Sacrifice to the Beauty and Convenience of the Road. It has been felled this morning, never to rise again and the Road is to be widened and enlarged. The Stump and Roots are to be dug out of the Ground and the Wall to be removed Back and made an Ha! Ha!
Billings had a mind to go upon Wall. I went with him from Place to Place, and could resolve on nothing. I then set him to split and mortise some Posts for the fence vs. Mrs. Veasie. We went up, carried the Posts but when We came there We found that the Wall was too 232heavy and Stones too large for two hands—four at least were necessary. Billings was wild and We came to some Explanation. He must go off &c. Mrs. Adams paid him off, and then He thought he would not go. After long Conversations Billings came to a Sort of Agreement to stay a Year from this day, at £45. He declared he would not drink Spirit nor Cyder for the whole Year. He reserved however twelve days for himself. We shall see tomorrow Morning how he behaves.
Billings sober and steady, persevering in his declaration that he will not drink, these 12 months. Paid Trask in full sixteen Dollars for 24 Days Works. He insisted on 4s. a Day. He has finished clearing the Swamp on Penns Hill this day.
Rode down to the Barley and Black grass at the Beach. The Barley is better than I hoped. The Clover has taken pretty well in general. Parts where the Tide has flowed are kill'd. Weeds very thick round the Margin of the Salt Meadow, or rather Black grass meadow. Twitch Grass scattering and thin. Billings sober, composed as ever. Bass and Brisler mowing with him. James the Coachman, enjoying the Pleasures of a Sportsman, shooting marsh Birds instead of mowing.
I rode up to Burrells in Braintree to tell Sullivan and Thomas that they might stay with the Team till they had got in all Burrells Hay. Billings thinks there will be 30 Bushells of Barley at the Beach and 30 Bushells to an Acre on Stony field Hill.
Burrells Barn is already nearly full of English Hay and fresh. His Salt Hay, he must stack or stow it in his Barn floor. He has collected his Summer Dung into heaps in his Barn Yard, and has a good deal of it. He will have manure enough, from his Cows and young Cattle, to serve a good Cornfield next Year. His Hogs besides will make a good deal.
I have concluded to break up upon Penns Hill a good Corn field on each side of the new Wall, one for Burrell and one for French and Vinton. They may sled or cart the manure in the Winter, and that Land will produce Clover and Herds grass much better than the plain below. I am weary of wasting so much labour and manure upon that dry plain, which is scortched and burnt up in a dry Season.
Still reading Bishop Watsons Apology. Finished.
My Men mowed the Black Grass and Barley at the Beach, came home and split all the Red Cedars into Posts and morticed some of 233them. Sullivan morticed after having assisted Burrell to get in all his fresh Hay.
Began The Life of Petrarch by Susanna Dobson.