Today in Pleasant Hill History – December 6th

Jacob A. Glover, PhD, Director of Public Programs and Education

“This is a remarkable cold windy day.  This day one of the boys at the West Lot struck a friction match and put it in their straw rick and burnt it up it stood connected to the machine shop and would have burnt it up if the wind had not been favorable.  They had their thrashing turning to the machine for scrapping broom corn buzzsaws for slitting out broom handles, besides the machinery for running these things, were all in the machine house. At one time the blaze struck into the house at the door it then pass out we then set plank in the door to keep it out until we could smother the blaze.  The boys name is James Dunkin.”

– December 6, 1854, Journal of James Levi Ballance, April 1, 1854, to March 30, 1860

Despite these actions by the disaffected youth, broom production at Pleasant Hill continued for the better part of the next fifty years and remained an integral part of the community’s economy nearly to the very end of its existence!

Shaker Village