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Amanda Burlingame Crossman Diary

Identifier: RH-A-3480

Scope and Contents

The writer of the diary is Amanda Crossman who was born as Amanda M. Burlingame in Governuer, St Lawrence, New York, USA on 15 July, 1818. She married Luther G. Crossman in West Bloomfield, Ontario, New York, USA on 19 April, 1837 until his death in 1879. The two lived for the majority of their lives in the town of Marengo in Calhoun County Michigan and had eight children starting with John Sidney (who died in infancy), George Harvey, Montgomery, Caroline (who died when she was five years old), Florence, Helen, Julia, and Eva. She was also a prominent member of the community. Amanda lived to be 80 years old when she died on 12 April, 1899.”


  • Creation: 1881



.05 Cubic Feet

Language of Materials


Physical Description

The collection amounts to .05 cubic feet and is composed of one diary, 5 ½” x 2 ¾” x 1/2” written by Amanda Burlingame Crossman (1818-1899) in the year 1881 when she was living in Marengo Township, Calhoun County, Michigan. The diary primarily records the day-to-day activities of Amanda Crossman in 1881. Common subjects that Amanda would talk about included baking (lots of cakes, pies, and bread), cleaning the house (as well as various other housework), taking time to sew or knit, visits from her children and friends (especially Johnnie and Eva), going to visit her friends, going to Marshall alone or with friends/relatives, and picking strawberries and other berries on the summer months. Though the most common subject the Amanda wrote on at the beginning of each entry was the day’s weather. Some of the more interesting things that Amanda writes about is of hear the news that President Garfield had been shot. Though most of the things that she writes that’s out of the ordinary involves thing relating to things closer to home includes her going to a camp meeting on August 11th (a “meeting” may mean a church meeting or sermon), injuring her hand on August 17th with it taking a few days to heal, mentioning Johnnie’s birthday on September 6th (stating that he is 34), and that during the summer she visits her relatives on the eastern side of Michigan for a few months. A note of interest includes knitting pattern instructions in the memoranda as well as a poem that Amanda may have written herself at the very end of the memoranda. The diary itself is in delicate condition. There is no front or back cover so all that remains are the leaves bound by string. The first few pages are very delicate.The first page has a small piece gone in the right hand corner. There is some staining.Some of the handwriting is light however a great deal continues to be legible. On the front are the words, “Excelsior Diary 1881.” Inside is a daily calendar for each month with a listing of the sunrises, sunsets and moonsets along with other information. Care should be taken when looking at this diary.


Purchased via the Starring Fund.

Amanda Burlingame Crossman Diary Finding Aid
Lynn Houghton and Steven Watters
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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Repository Details

Part of the Western Michigan University Archives & Regional History Collections Repository

Charles C. and Lynn L. Zhang Legacy Collections Center
1650 Oakland Drive
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5307 US
(269) 387-8490