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The breakfast bell rang at half past six, when each girl bounded from her seat and rushed to the hall, and a noisy procession two and two, went down the stairs to the floor of the dining room, then walked with great propriety to our seats. The tables were covered with clean white tablecloths. Each girl had a pewter plate, a white china mug, and a spoon. Thick slices of bread and butter (the bread baked in a large pan) were placed on pewter platters on the table. A waiter passed the bread and butter to the girls. The mugs of coffee with sugar and milk in them were standing by our plates. This was the breakfast every day in the year.

Every morning we returned to our sitting room, took out our combs, and arranged our hair by the aid of small hand glasses, which were kept in our desks. Then, as we finished arranging our hair, we left our seats, went to the "next room", brushed our teeth, and washed again. When it was time to prepare for church, we went to the "next room", and if it was summer, we put on our caps like those worn by Quakers, tied with a white ribbon. In winter we wore bonnets and coats with little capes.

The church was only a short distance away, and the walks were very fine flag ones. When the church bell rang, the oldest girls assembled in the hall, and with a teacher and one of the girls, with another teacher and scholar in the rear, very decorously went down the stairs and toward the church. As soon as they were out of the way, the next in order started, and so on, until the occupants of seven rooms had started for church. There they were seated on benches with backs.

We used prayer books and sang a hymn. A sermon in English was preached once a month, at other times, it was in German. The music was very fine, the singing being the greater part of the service. There was a fine organ. Once a month we had an invitation to "love feast". We always went to church, and took our seats in the same manner. After prayer and very beautiful singing, the sisters passed around large wooden waiters filled with cakes, like buns, as large as saucers. These were delicious. Pint mugs of delicious coffee accompanied the buns. After a brother returned thanks, we returned to the school. The brothers sat on one side of the church and the sisters on the other.

Soon after returning from church we had dinner. For Sunday dinner in winter, we had roast pork, a variety of vegetables, apple sauce and water. Of this, we had all we could eat, no dessert. In the afternoon we went to Bible class in the chapel connected with the school. After Bible class we could go to our rooms, read, sing, or talk. We could walk in the grounds with a teacher, but could not run nor play.

Recollections of
Mrs Harriet Gould Drake Tinkam: student, 1817

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