Parts of this post originally appeared at Incertus.
Helen Webster is, I believe, a great grandmother of mine, who was a teenager in the 1890s. Beyond that, I know nothing. My grandmother's sister (great-aunt? I can never keep these things straight) found this diary probably ten years ago and photocopied it for everyone in the family who wanted a copy. My sister passed it along to me, as a curiosity of sorts, and it's been sitting in a portable file cabinet ever since. I'd long planned to transcribe it, but frankly, the job seemed overwhelming, especially since the handwriting is small and has gone through the photocopier a few times.
But then I saw this story and was inspired. I post a new diary entry every day, and I find myself approaching this not as a task, but as a joy. I've had to force myself to not transcribe more than a day at a time, and in fact, I find myself deliberately delaying the transcription so as to increase the pleasure I'm getting from it so far.
I've been a bit overwhelmed by the reception thus far, and I'm quite appreciative. I'll keep it up as long as I have entries to work with, and when I'm finished, I plan to leave it up indefinitely, as an archive of this person at this point in time.