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JQA Diary, volume 44 19 September 1843
JQA Neal Millikan Recreation Temperance Movement
76 Quincy Tuesday 19. September 1843.

19. III.45 Tuesday.

Crosby Nathan Crosby Stephen Moody Loring Thomas

In search of laborious exercise I undertook this morning with my Spade, hoe and Saw to clear out an apple tree close to the wall in the ally leading over the hill, beyond Charles’s house— It is overrun with suckers and the ground over its root is hard bound almost as stone, and covered with blackberry vines; unapproachable— With my spade and hoe, I broke up the ground; about one half surrounding the trunk and took off a couple of the suckers nearest to the surface of the ground— It was a sweating work of two hours; the remainder of which I left for to-morrow— The wild cherry seedling that I crop’d off some time since has put out two or three buttons, and close under the crop two leaves.— And this morning for the first time I saw 2 pears on the sucker tree near the dwarf apple tree. It is a bergamot and must be at least 25 years old— I thought it never would bear— Mr Nathan Crosby called on me again, with his Son Stephen Moody Crosby; whose mother is the daughter of my brother Thomas’s Classmate Stephen Moody, recently deceased— He came again to my son’s house for his contribution to the Temperance funds— Mr Thomas Loring came to renew the proposal for another fishing party. I agreed to meet him at his house on Thursday Morning at 7. O’Clock, if the weather promise to be fair; and if not, either of the following days Friday or Saturday.— I find it impossible, taking three hours of exercise a day, to write the page of Journal, two or three short Letters, and even one page of the Astronomical Discourse—and having yesterday written three short Letters, I was last night, spell bound, and physically unable to write more than three or four lines— This day I made an effort and got through my journal page by 11. but then fell to searching for files of Letters and papers, which took up the time till dinner— I received a second Letter from Mr Giddings, with one of the same date (13 September) from him, James M Bloss, and Gaius N. St John, as a Committee of the People of Ashtabula County, Ohio inviting me to visit them on my way to or returning from Cincinnati— This afternoon I answered the invitation and the Letter from Giddings; but it left me in the evening only the power to finish the page I had begun yesterday of my discourse. In the distribution of my time, it is distressing to be so exceedingly straitened for hours to read; and I feel it cruelly now—when I want to compress a history of Astronomy into a discourse of three hours delivery. My task is to turn this transient gust of enthusiasm for the Science of astronomy at Cincinnati into a permanent and persevering national pursuit which may extend the bounds of human knowledge, and make my country instrumental in elevating the character and improving the condition of man upon Earth— The hand of God himself has furnished me this opportunity to do good— But O! how much will depend upon my manner of performing that task? and with what agony of soul must I implore the aid of almighty wisdom for powers of conception, energy of exertion and unconquerable will to accomplish my design.