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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Dear Diary: Yesterday I went to the Titanic enquiry...

May 16, 1772

Last Wednesday Bet Smith was set upon the gallows. She behav'd with great impudence. Thursday I danc'd a minuet & country dances at school, after which I drank tea with aunt Storer. Today I am somewhat out of sorts, a little sick at my stomach.

~ Anna Green Winslow, age 10, from The Diary of Anna Green Winslow, a Boston Girl

May 23, 1912

Yesterday I went to the Titanic enquiry. I found it intensely interesting. I am longing to hear the passengers’ evidence for it is quite clear that every officer was trying to shield the captain, second the company, and third, himself. One of the younger officers went so far as to say that he did not know for certain that any women or children were drowned, and when he was pressed about this he admitted that he knew 1,600 souls had gone down but, declaring that as he had never looked at newspapers, he had no idea as to the proportion of women and children.

~ Marie Belloc Lowndes, from The Assassin’s Cloak: An Anthology of the World’s Greatest Diarists, edited by Irene and Alan Taylor

May 29, 1885

I always thought I was born to be a discredit to my parents, but it was exhibited in a marked manner today. Since my hair is cut my hats won't stick on, and today being gusty, it must needs blow into the large fountain at the exhibition, and drifted off to the consternation of my father, and the immense amusement of the spectators.

~ Beatrix Potter, from The Diaries of Beatrix Potter, edited by Leslie Linder