Bill Akins Journal
Pages 27 - 37
Dec 10th 1855
Tremendous cold last night the wind blowed savage. Today made some repares on the siding mill & assisted the engineer some. Shall run the mill tomorrow. Going to copy some from Pop now R. Hale is with me. Monday, Dec 10th 1855
D15, 1855. Went to Eastmens today found it very hard walking indeed. Bought one pare of overhauls & ________, $1.00. Saw Judge Waters my old friend and had a long chat together. Think I shall work for him next summer for 14 shillings per day. Saw my friend Geo Cahoon who had his eye knocked out by a mallet, falling on to a siding mill saw which made him senseless for a week he is a fine fellow. But the boys are kicking around here and jarring the floor tremendously and all feeling well. Bill
Polkton Dec 11 1855
Went down to Eastmans Landing yesterday helped drink 2 quarts of Cidor. Seth returned saw him get on to the Steam Boat Empire & come back with E. Jewitt. Received a letter from Brother George with inquiry about locating government land here in these parts. But the question is easy answered, there is no land of that description here bouts. Must go down and see Jewett about the matter. Very cold this morning, snow about 3 inches deep. No busings today except reading, writing & Fiddling. Amen for the present. Bill
William F. Akins
William F Akins
Robert M Hale
Robert M Hale
Every man is born for some destiny and every day of his life is a consumation of a part, most of which he takes no notice and is not long remembered. But one’s life is a confused ginggle of actions, he is a fugitive in many mans estimations and if his own conception of himself is flattering, his final settlement with the world will leave but little to balance.
The weather is fine today and I am afraid we shall have a breakup. I have been idle now four days though in perfect health. I want to get into businey. Dreamed hard dreams last night with no conclusion. The effect perhaps of my visit last evening at A Bigalow & F. Tubbs and the company of their fair looking wives. Dec 18, 1855
Dreamed a dream the other night when all around was still I thought.
December 27, 1855
Very tedious wether for the past week. Snowed every day in it. If more comes it will bring money to me for Damons lumber will be drawn to the river and our pay will come forthwith. Mine will amount to $150.00 at this time & perhaps double of that in the spring on in the middle of the summer. Hatch has hired four new hands and they are all fine fellows except one Gumus Hall who will get shifted shortly. One Irishman and one mongiral something its both clever fellows. Wrote a letter to Frank Winship last Sunday hope to get an answer soon. Hear nothing from home for four weeks. Think tonight I would like to be among the gentle folks in Berkshire, but tis but I should be away at present from home. I have to work pretty hard now a days. But feel well and in good health. Bill
December 30th 1855
Had a visit from Hub Titus yesterday in the afternoon with his wife. They stayed in the evening and we had among us all a great time. I sat on the table in a chair and played the violin for Cotitions Hordigs. Thin whats & brakdown danced till half after eleven. ________ till ten minutes to nine this morning then arose washed, shifted clothes and read some in Taylors Digesis and indrsed the most of it. Got my Tribune last night must read some in it. Going down to Jewett’s after dinner to write to Seth. I with Jewett collectivly the weather is rather sad and dreary and very cold and I will transfer myself to reading.
Amen Bill Akins
Polkton Dec 30, 1855 up stares by the stove pipe Sunday morning.
Feb 25th 1856
The preceding few pages were written while I was in rather a debilitated state of health. When physical and mental facal ties were declining and also laboring under a melancholy apprehension that I was about to have the Ague and fever. This is my appology for grunnefs. Though now my friends are indefferent to me for letters and don’t care more than ever. Good by to nonsence and away to bed. Bill Akins
Polkton Ottawa Co Michigan
The envious snow fell in past
To prove they beast less fair
But grieves to see itself surpassed
And melts into a tear.
The snow fell on her white boosom has
And we know it hadn’t order
Pray till it last, alas. A Dear
______ shirt was wet as water
Roseville 12 of May 57
Eating ____ cakes this afternoon. The girls have got home. Fib is sick with the head-ache & Vira is on the nip cat and the mother gone visiting. Every thing seems brighter ______ all around the room. The weather is desidedly pleasant but cool. 4 ¼ ocl pm. Bill Akins
An hour at the old playground.
I sat an hour today _______.
Beside the old playground.
I sat an hour today _____
Besie the old brook _____
When we were school boys in old time.
Haven ______ was a dream
The brook is ekked with fallen leaves
The pond is dryed away
I scarce believe that you would know
The dear old place today.
The school house is no more John
Beneath our front tree
When _____ _____ rose by the window side
Roseville May 16, 1857
Our pardon my friend for the liberty I take in addressing now in this thoughtful hour. I am thinking at present of the melancholy days that are again returning. Although it’s early in autumn the wind is whistling through the trees newly robed of their green leaves, the tree standing tall and bare bending slowly and wailing mournfully to the winds the leaves lie dead at their feet. How continually are we reminded of the friends that have sickened and died, that were once dear to us. That had perhaps, proud hopes in youth, like ourselves. That strickened down in youth and all such hopes frustrated. But spite of blighting & withering winds I can not help thinking that better days will return as do loved friends for another, & another farewell. ____ she leaves us to the mercy of a teadious Northern winter – but now for the present supper must be attended to.
Yours as ever be Wm F. Akins
Bears the man heart that looks beneath W star.
Behold the child by Nature’s kindly law
Pleased with a rattle, tickled with a straw
_______ livelier plaything gives our youth delight
A little louder but as empty quite
Scarf garlier, gold our riper years engage
And beads and prayer books are the toys of age
Received with this bulle still as that before
Till tired we sleep—and Life’s poor play is over.
Crabb’s Tales of the Fallen
Roseville Aug 16, 1857
This day Sunday in the morning went out hunting Pigeons with Bob Hale. Coming home fell in with a gang of raccoons. We shot two and caught two more and brought them home and made a cage for em.
Hatch & Merritt
July 23 Balance due on settlement $ 284.28
July 29 Pd By Cash $ 5.00
Aug 13 Pd By Cash $ 15.00
Aug 14 Dn, To Note given for the about account $ 264.28
Aug 22 Pd For Bill of Merchandise
received of Porter & Mathewson $20.00
Wm F. Akins.
Nov 10th Dn, to letters from Miss Emily Akins
Nov 10 To letter from Mary Akins.
The damed old mill has fell in to hands of Wm J. Wills, the banker of Grand Rapids. Hatch ag____ foreman.
February 22nd 1861 We. F. Akins
Tis hard to dessever the ties of affection. To part with the object which cherished our love. The tear and the sigh will denote our dejection and grief the deep feelings will move.
Like the child the eager stream let leaps and laughs a down the hill happy to be freed at twilight from toiling at the mill.
Roseville Sunday Morning August 7, 1857
Awoke at seven this morning in good spirits notwithstanding my imprudent beer drinking last night with my old friend Jewitt, Leeander Brown and Charles Brown at the Roseville Saloon of Thomas T. Davis. “4 glasses of beer & 2 cigars & candy each.” Hatch has sold out his share of the mill to his pardoner, Titus Merritt of Iowa. He is very desirious to have myself & Bob Heale take his mill to run by the thousand if we should what would be the consequesnes. :bankrupcy would