A Time in the Life of…

September 22, 1774

I’m Permelia, everyone calls me Mellie.  We’re back at the fort again. My father heard of another Indian attack, so my mother made me pack up our things. Father said we didn’t need to.

All the families in these parts come to stay here at the fort when they get scared. One time, my mother and father ran in the house and started taking everything. I was tryin’ to sew, but I had to stop and leave it. I even had to leave my new doll; Becky made it from a corn husk before she left. It was my very first doll. But it didn’t matter. We walked for a real long time and hardly ever got to stop. When we got to the fort, there were lots of families there, and the men were talkin’ ‘bout their posts and something called strategy.

It’s not like that this time, though. My father says it’s a waste of time. He and my big brother can’t harvest the crops.

October 3, 1774

Sometimes I wish I could be back home. But I hate chores. I don’t miss makin’ soap, and mother lets me help cook so I don’t forget how to. She talks too much about when I’m older and can get married. Becky got married last year when she was sixteen. My parents thought she wouldn’t ever get married.

My big brother is almost thirteen. His name is Cyrus, but we call him Cy. He just got his first gun. He wanted one real bad for a long time. Most boys his age have had a gun for longer.  Mother said she didn’t want him to have a gun so he wouldn’t have a post at the fort. All men get posts at the fort because the Indians are mad. But he’s not a man yet; he just has a gun. When I was little, and sometimes now still, Father would take me out to try to shoot guns. I’m not very good, but Mother says we gotts’ hunt, too, in case Father’s gone away.

I don’t think I would like hunting and killing little fluffies. I just want to shoot. Most of the time, I have to grind meal and take care of the littler ones.  Mother and Becky say it’s good for me to take care of my siblins ‘cause one day I’ll have to take care of my own family.

October 28, 1774

What if Logan comes to get his revenge and the boys forget their posts?  What if he brings his Indians and hurts us like we hurt them? Mother tells me not to think like this. She just tells me this because she doesn’t want to hear about guns and killin’s. Mother wouldn’t say when we’ll get to leave. But it’s probably never now, ‘cause father just heard about another Indian attack, and he says more families will come to the fort to stay.  It’ll get fun real soon now.