The Diary of Jenny Dungan Shields

L to R: Son, Charles Benjamin, husband, Albert, Sabina
(Jenny) Jane Dungan Shields, daughter, Elizabeth Louise.

The Diary was sent to the Flora L. VerStraten by great-granddaughter, Virginia “Ginger” J. Stanwick.  “Sabina Jane Dungan Shield was born April 12th, 1863 on Ramsey Road out Morning Glow Lane off the Adena-Harrisville Road.  She started this diary at the age of sixteen. Sabina {better known as “Jenny”} was raised as a Quaker in the town of Emerson, which was known as {New} Trenton then, near the town of Mt. Pleasant, Ohio. She became a schoolteacher of a one-room schoolhouse. She married Albert Shields, October 30, 1890. Albert died October 17, 1933. Having no Quaker Meetinghouse in Adena where she had moved earlier, she became a devout Methodist and played a large part in the Methodist organization.  They had three children, one dying at three wk. Sabina Jane died April 25, 1954, 91 yr. of age.”


The diary begins October 1879, Wed. 15 – “Thinking that perhaps in after years it would be of interest to look over what I did and etc. when young. I jot down a few items. Cider making now. A throng at the press all the time nearly. Pa is kept busy and there is no school this week in Mt. P. (Pleasant) both Mr. White’s are sick. I was at the dance on the 10th at T.M. Heaton’s. Had a good time. Went to a political meeting at Georgetown the evening of the 11th. Joel Meredith and Jennie Heaton, Frank Burk and Lib Jarvis, Mill Meredith and myself went in an express. Hon. J.T. Updegraff spoke. Music by the Harrisville band. Went to another political meeting at Mt. Pleasant the evening of the 18th. Updegraff spoke…

Friday 17, 1879 – Showery today, but still very warm. The citizens (republican citizens) of Ohio are rejoicing over the election of Charlie Foster for Governor. They are expressing this joy by shootings.

Monday 20, 1879 – School again. Mr. White’s are again able to assume their work. I do not like to go to Mt. Pleasant School.

Friday 24, 1879- snowing for the first in the season. Uncle Charles, Aunt Bine, and Mag and Jess Dungan here this evening.

November 4, Tuesday – A wedding last Tuesday Oct 30th which I forgot to write. Miss Mollie and Thomas, and Mr. Nathaniel Ong were the victims. Very warm and dry.

November 7, Friday- No school afternoon. Dr. Updegraff’s child is dead with scarlet fever.

     November 13, Thursday – Had a splendid time last night. All came that were invited but Ross Burriss, Nez McMillan and Kersey Vickers. The ones present were Jess Heaton, Annie Philpotte, Annie Furbay, Debbie Wallace, Alice Meredith, Edith Carpenter, Ed Furbay, Charley Scott, Charley Waterman, Meredith’s boys, Harvey Walker, Lou and Mahlon Walker, Frank Burk, Geo. Cirby and Hal McMillan.

 January 1, 1880 Thursday – Had a turkey roast. Had company. Hamakers, Grandfather, Aunt Bine, Sallie Mitchell, Jennie Creighton, and Annie Philpotte are here. We girls all went to Trenton this evening to make arrangements for a leap year party which is to take place next Sat night at our house.

January 29, Thursday – I stayed in town last night and Mag and I went to Quaker revival.

January30, Friday – I was at school this afternoon. I am not going any more. Mag came home with me to stay until Sunday.

August 1, 1880, Sunday – We had a real nice time at the picnic. There was 13 there in the afternoon but more came in the evening. Father and Mother go to Uncle Abe’s. Meeting at Rehoboth Church. One of U.B. McGlauthlin’s {McLaughlin} little boys was killed yesterday, by a runaway horses, buried today.

August 4, Wed – Father and Mother and I go to Mt. Pleasant. I have eight teeth pulled.

October 18, Monday – Real cold. There were two weddings last Thursday, Elwood Walker and Alice Clark, Jim Bennett and Mary Neill.

November 4, 1880 – Rainy. I am not at school. Mother and Father go to help Merediths move into Dick Heabe’s place. Rachel Tomilinson buried.” {Last entry was written Feb. 25, 1947. More interesting tidbits!}