The Cooper cabin

In the small hours of the morning, I placed the last of the dry firewood on the fire and prayed it would last long enough for us to go out and fetch more later on when it got warmer out. I could just see the first light of the day through the cabin window as I settled in to try to get a few more precious minutes of sleep.

The girls and I awoke to Sgt. McBee's knock at the cabin door, letting us know that breakfast was ready. We rose and dressed and I bundled the girls in their bed-jackets and cloaks. Lucy has gotten so big that she was forced to make due with her father's heavy gray wool over-shirt.

We were treated to a magnificent meal of eggs, meats, fried potatoes and assorted pastries.

I gave two detail'd surgical demonstrations for the benefit of the publick during the course of the day. Lucy and I moved the table out into the grass near the dogtrot of the cabin, so that the instruments could be seen by all. Lucy, as she has gotten older, has become a great help to me in my practice... tis a shame that the Lord did not see fit to give me sons to pass on the Art & Mystery of my profession to. But things upon the frontier are not as strict as they are back in polite society, and this allows Lucy to assist me to a certain degree. I dare-say, she could remove a musket ball from a wound as well as I! I have already taught her the first rule of a surgeon's mate and make her repeat it for me on command, "Mind your fingers!"

The girls explored the village over the course of the day and made new friends. I tended the table and discussed my instruments and methods with visitors as they pass'd by.

Captain Jack informed me that the girls and I were invited to the 'Williamsburg' style supper to be held in the schoolhouse that evening. I had been past the schoolhouse several times over the course of the day and watched its transformation into a grand dining hall, compliments of the fines ladies who had spent the day working at it.

We were met at the entrance by the doorman who took my name and escorted us to our places. The hall was warm and lit with a myriad of candle lanterns, a spectacular transformation. Two long tables covered in fine, white tablecloths dominated the floor.

Our meal consisted of a large green salad, a bowl of peanut soup, Turkey, Yams and Tomatoes (although I was hesitant to partake of the tomatoes as they are part of the deadly nightshade family), and a dessert of Apple Dumplings with a sweet, warm caramel sauce.

Sergeant McBee was also one of the honoured guests and we sat close to one another at the great table. We discussed our travels and such, and after our courses were served and cleared away, I pulled from my pocket a deck of cards for a little One & Thirty. I also invited another gentleman who dined beside us to join in our merriment.

Sgt. McBee on the left and our card playing companion who obviously needs a few more cards in order to reach the desired 'One & Thirty'. Rose and Molly look on.

Sophie, my youngest, entertained several of the wives in attendance by
singing and making the little 'Ensign Boggs' dance.

We ended up playing so many rounds of One & Thirty, that Rose and Molly even joined in with us. Rose enjoyed saying 'Have it' and getting cards, usually landing far above the designated 'One & Thirty' required to win the game.


Bridgett McGee said...

You must seek the game of shut the box, your girls will love it and not even realize that it'll tech them to calculate. Looks like ye all had another enjoyabletime.

AJ said...

I am somewhat surprised you were not served peanut pie with your Williamsburg-style meal. It is very common here and a proud delicacy!