1930's Diary of an Isle Royale Winter

October 26, 1932

Nothing to record—rain, rain all day—mud, slush, dirt, cold. Is Isle Royale romantic? Not today!

October 28, 1932

The worst storm in years, they tell me. It is bitterly cold, raining, hailing. The sea is roaring in, even here in the harbor. They had to move the boats over to the other side, it is pounding so here. They are worried that the fishhouse may blow away. We listened to a play, Mary Queen of Scots, with June Meredith—it was good, but too short! We didn’t hear Time because the air was cleared for Hoover’s damn old speech. It is cold here—we are all hurrying to get to bed!

October 29, 1932

We woke this morning to a changed world—one covered with snow, and very beautiful. At least three inches of snow fell during the night. The children were overjoyed and spent the day making snowmen and sliding on the hills. The stove was put up in the living room, with much argument over the merits of the various places for the furniture. I worked on clothes—mending and washing, did some schoolwork, wrote two stories for the News, and took a roll of film—went out to the point to get some of the waves, and slipped on the sloppy snow—slid and scraped my “seat!” Decided to wash my hair and thereupon did so. As I sat here drying my hair, it grew dusk and I watched the scene change from one of turbulence to one of peace. Mr. Johnson came in late to supper—he had been treed for over an hour by a big bull moose, while he was out on the trap lines!

November 3, 1932

The old lake was surely rolling, all day today. I voted—hope I did it the right way! After listening to all the speeches, I was more confused than ever. Did my ironing in the evening. The men were skinning wolves and minks. Oh what a smell!

November 6, 1932

The men made a fine haul of five hundred pounds of trout and whitefish this morning! The Winyah brought all our winter supplies and was the dock loaded! I wonder if we’ll ever eat our way out.

November 8, 1932

It was a horrible day—poured rain continuously and the whole place is a sea of mud. We listened to the election returns all evening, and are pleased that Roosevelt seems to have been chosen for our next president. And the fishermen are very pleased to hear of Comstock’s (probable) election as governor.

All I care about is a decent job for next year. One that won’t require wood and water hauling and janitor scrubbing and cleaning! It’s fierce here in this mudhole! I’m going to crawl into bed and read old lady E.D.E.N. Southworth’s The Hidden Hand! Just the thing for a murderous election night. We have nothing to help us make whoopee!

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