Thursday, March 17, 2011

Letters to Lillian, July 4, 1922

Introduction to Letters to Lillian

Sampson Mine,
Llanada, Calif,
July 4, 1922

Dear Lillian--The grand and glorious Fourth has arrived. That is, I suppose it is grand and glorious. I know that it is hot. It was 104 today. That is not unusual, as we have had hotter days lately. I do not mind the heat now as I prepare for it. The afternoon is of course hotter than the morning, but in spite of that I run my furnace afternoons. The hard part is that I do my grinding at noon. I have a fairly well established schedule now.

     I get up about 5:30 or 6. Lately I have been working on my store books, so I work on them before breakfast. This morning I also took a shower before breakfast. I don't intend to make a practice of that however. The water is heated by the sun only and the sun don't get very hot before breakfast. We eat at 7:30. Then I put up my store orders for the kitchen and upper camp. From 8 to 11 I have for miscellaneous duties, lately working on my store books. I did not hire out for a bookkeeper and I make a punk one. I have my June books nearly done now and I intend to try and get them ready to send in tomorrow. I wish we had a stenographer here to type my work. I am referring to one certain San Francisco stenographer, not the one in the Sampson Magnesite office either.

     Well, to get back to my program, I had gotten to 11 A.M. About that time Geo. Agers comes in from Mendota. I meet him and get any supplies that he might bring. He always brings fuel oil, which does not concern me. I go to the loading bin and wait for him. As he fills his truck I fill my sample can. I take about 30 pounds of sample. Then I proceed back to the lab. I start to grind the sample and generally have to quit for lunch.

     I come right back and finish it if I do not get done, taking about 25 minutes to eat. In case I get the sample ground before lunch, I weigh out my lab. sample. Immediately after dinner I start my analysis. I aim to finish about 5. That gives me a half hour to clean up the lab. before supper. We eat at 5:30. Tonight I did not get done until 6, as George was late this morning, arriving about 11:30. In addition I spent 20 minutes making a sieve.

     About 4 o'clock or a little earlier I precipitate the lime. It has to stand 30 minutes, so while it is standing I take a shower bath. I have to let the water run a little as it is too hot at first. It is connected to the same branch as my lab water and generally runs a little hotter. It gets about 140 degrees on a hot afternoon. I like it about 90 so I have to let it run.

     When I am analyzing I take off my shoes and socks and put on slippers. I keep the floor good and wet and both windows open. Today I made some temperature tests. I took the lab. temp. at 1 P.M. It was 104 degrees. I wet the floor thoroughly and in about 15 or 20 minutes took the temp. again. It was 101. Then I started the furnace. It went back to 104 and stayed there. The doors and windows were open all the time.

     Last night I obtained a newspaper and proceeded to read it. I see about one paper in two weeks, so I get very little news. Haycraft was telling me last time he was up that there was quite a fire at the University. Just my luck not to see it. I haven't seen a good fire for years.

     Blackie was quite cheerful this morning. He recieved [sic] word that his wife would be up to spend a few days. I would like to have my wife up too, that is if I had a wife.

     Well it is 17 more days, but I have to get some sleep now, so I must close. It is after 9 P.M. already. So write to

          Your Jim

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