A Year In The Life Of Lee Fisher, Part I

November 9, 2008 by
Filed under: Area 51 

One reason I do not keep a diary is because the one time I did my parents read it and I got bawled out. Big time. I suppose this is why twenty years later I elected my (on occasion) less-than-savory sentiments on the Internets: if I am to have no expectations of privacy, the more the merrier. As a matter of fact, my favorite reads from the junk shop are OTHER people’s diaries. These turn up pretty regularly. Most are pretty dull but occasionally I’ll find a real page-turner. As a result I know much intimate details from lives of people I have not and probably never will meet: the night-stands, bad days at work, good days at work, what he or she made for Christmas dinner six years ago and so forth. Which brings me to the item to the left.

This is the frontispiece from a “penny diary” I found recently. It belonged to one Lee Fisher of 443 Grand Street, New York, New York. Since it was absolutely miserable out yesterday I gave it a read. While not very detailed it did give some indication as to what the daily life of an average Joe living in the Lower East Side almost 100 years ago was like.

After mulling it over a bit I decided to embark on a little project. Publish a series of posts featuring the tomes of Mr. Fisher. Since I have no images of him or the other folks who graced his life I decided to pair select entries with images from my cache of old New York City photographs.

Here is the first installment. Enjoy!

January 8, 1917

In store until 7:30 p.m. Met the boys at Stitch’s. Saw them beat up Harry Kaplan. Some fight. Read a book. To bed.

January 19, 1917

In store until 7 p.m. Heard an Anarchistic lecture by Emma Goldman and Alex Berkman, Read the “Blast”. To bed.

(You can read his diary entries for January 1 – February 2 by clicking here.)

February 9, 1917

In store until 7:30 p.m. Had some ruff words with Sam about the work. Played pool. Read a mag, a few newspapers. To bed.

(You can read his diary entries for February 3 – March 4 by clicking here.)

March 28 & 31, 1917

In store until 12 o’clock, The work is getting on my nerves, Though Spring just came around. Read a newspaper. To bed.

In store until 12 mid. Spring is certainly getting on my nerves. Read newspaper went to bed.

(You can read his diary entries for March 5 – April 3 by clicking here.)

May 2, 1917

No work today. Saw the “Twin Bess” with Sis Sarah in afternoon. Went to see Belle & did not enjoy as well as usual. To bed at one.

(You can read his dairy entries from April 4 – May 3 by clicking here.)

I hope you have enjoyed this voyeuristic trip back in time. In the next installment our protagonist whiles away the summer at Coney Island, goes “machine riding” with his friends and ponders taking a trip to Cuba. Stay tuned!

Miss Heather


2 Comments on A Year In The Life Of Lee Fisher, Part I

  1. rowan on Mon, 10th Nov 2008 3:32 pm
  2. yowza. he lives an interesting life. is Belle his girlfriend/lover/hooker? thanks for posting this.

  3. suzyO on Tue, 11th Nov 2008 2:00 am
  4. fabulous. you are legend.

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