The Journal of Charles Rawn
September 15, 1849 to November 30, 1849 (Book 20)

Edited by Jeannette Barnes

Charles Rawn gives many clues about his life and legal practice in this section of his journal. For example, on September 15, 1849, Rawn mentions his law student, Mr. James Bredin. Since legal education in the 1840s was still largely dependent on the student essentially apprenticing with an established lawyer, this provides some insight into Rawn's standing in the legal community at that time. In order to have a law student, Rawn would have needed to be recognized as a worthy attorney. Mr. Bredin appears in several other entries of the journal, where Rawn mentions him as joining Rawn on one of his daily walks, or references an examination Rawn gave him on matters of law.

While doing research on the Mills case, I came across an Indictment sworn out by James Bredin - apparently the same James Bredin who was Rawn's law student. The Indictment was sworn on December 23, 1848, filed with the Dauphin County Court on January 15, 1849. It accused a man named Washington Addison of stealing Bredin's black coat, satin vest, pair of fine boots, and a large silver watch. On the Indictment, someone, quite probably the Court clerk (as the Indictments in the file appear to have been written out by the Complainant, with each one in a different hand), crossed out the adjectives for the items stolen (for example, "one satin vest" reads as "one satin vest"), and the value of each item is listed after the item. At the end of the Indictment, a total value for the property stolen is indicated ($35). On the back of the Indictment, the caption is written, along with a note dated January 15, 1849: "Deft. being arraigned pleads Guilty."1

On November 5, 1849, Rawn enters into his journal the fact that Anthony Moore and his wife, Cecelia, who had been living with the Rawns since July, left to take their own house. Mr. and Mrs. Moore were apparently the Rawns' servants, as Rawn talks of paying Cecelia's back wages on the day they left. Later in this entry, Rawn states that he hired an Ellen O'Grady and her brother, Mo. Grady, two Irish teenagers, to replace the Moores. Rawn must have liked something about Mo., since he writes, "Mo. Grady aged about 16 to 17 years also came on trial for a week or two for his eating & lodging. If we Suit each other I will Keep him all winter on those terms & give him Such 2n hand clothing as I may not want that he may Stand in need of." Rawn was probably grateful for this extra pair of hands on November 8, when he notes that a violent thunderstorm knocked down the Wister Building (Mr. Wister apparently being an out-of-town client of Rawn's) and Mo. spent the next several days at the Wister property piling up wheelbarrow loads of fallen brick, "laying up the pieces & parts of said Building & making fence where same stood."2

On November 22, 1849, Rawn mentions donating two small books - one an "introduction to Eng[lish] Reader" and the other on arithmetic to a Mr. Trump apparently for his edification; Mr. Trump had delivered wood to Rawn, but Rawn states that he paid him cash for that service. Rawn also gave Trump a present of apples and crackers.3

Of course, Rawn performs his usual recordings of the weather, his daily purchases, his correspondence, and his cases. In this section of the journal, however, Rawn seems to have become rather properous. He discusses collecting rents for properties he owned around Harrisburg, and mentions owning his own carriage.


1 - Dauphin County Indictments, 1849.

2 - Rawn journal, Nov. 8, 9, 10, 1849.

3 - Rawn journal, Nov. 22, 1849.

The Journal

Transcriptions for this section of the journal begin September 15, 1849 and end November 30, 1849. Click on a date to begin reading.

List of Names Mentioned

  • Albright, Mo.
  • Allen, Mr. Cooper - Client
  • Alricks, Hamliton - Was at Beatty’s for Thanksgiving along with Rawn
  • Alricks, Henry
  • Ball, J. T.
  • Balman, Michl.
  • Beatty, Ercurius
  • Beatty, Mary
  • Beatty, Wm. P.
  • Berghaus, Mr. - Rawn bought sugar from him
  • Bithemers, Mo.
  • Bol., Mr.
  • Boon, Gavin - Rawn paid him for hooping his carriage wheels
  • Bower, Jap. - Client
  • Branyan, Robt. A.
  • Bredin, Mr. James - Rawn’s student
  • Breniger, Miss Ann
  • Brenner, Peter - Rawn bought hay from him
  • Bretz, Geo. - Calls on Rawn to look at and purchase Mills ornstat [?] instruments
  • Briggs, Mr.
  • Buffington
  • Bull, Rev. Dr. - Was at Beatty’s for Thanksgiving along with Rawn
  • Buniman, G. C.
  • Burnett, A. - Treasurer who collected pew rent for Presbyterian Church
  • Bush, Wm.
  • Callum, Mr. - Rawn bought groceries from him
  • Calvin, J. - Walked with Rawn and his son Charles
  • Carson, Jno.
  • Chapin, E. W. - Rawn received a letter from him
  • Cheyney, Captain Mo. H. - Rawn write to him
  • Cicily - Woman who helped Mrs. Beatty and Frances Rawn make peach butter
  • Clearson, F. - Takes the place of McClure as an attorney with Rawn
  • Clendenin, Mrs. - Relative of Frances
  • Cox, Esther - Married in Epis. Church to Mr. Piolet
  • Cuniman, Geo. C. - Of Baltimore
  • Dean, Robt. S. - Attorney in Cincinnati
  • Denehy [possibly Donehy], Magdaleria
  • Duey, Fredk. - Client
  • Duff, Sam - Shoemaker, his wife was a client of Rawn along with three other women
  • Eby, J. and E. C. - Rawn bought coal from them
  • Edwards, Mr. - Rawn buys shoes for John Calvin from him
  • Ellen - Women who works for the Beattys
  • Emerson, George F. - Business associate of Rawn
  • Eysler, DAS - Rawn buys alcohol from him
  • Fackler, Mrs. Elizabeth
  • Fishburn, S. - Rawn bought wheat from him
  • Forster, Major - Examined law books at the State Library
  • Ford, Charly (colored) - Assisted with cutting
  • Fortney, Christn. - Rawn bought oats from him
  • Gamber, Susan J. - Rawn received a letter from her
  • Gaure, Mr. - Teacher
  • Geff, Elizabeth
  • Grady, Ellen - Came to live Rawn for 75 cents per week
  • Grady, Mo. - Elizabeth’s brother, lived with Rawn on trial
  • Hagy, O.
  • Hale, Mrs. Joanna
  • Hamilton, Rev. Mr.
  • Harrington, J. (colored)
  • Heinz, Trimbly
  • Hiyo, Geo. W. - Mills’ brother-in-law
  • Hoffmanop, Mo.
  • Hopkins, Benj. - Rawn receives from him rent on Wister property
  • Hopkins, Beufn.
  • Howell, Rev. Mr. - Preached
  • Hummels, V. - Rawn bought sugar from him
  • Hunt, Rev. Mr. - Preached when Rawn was at church
  • Ingram, Sarah - Involved in the Mills case
  • Keller, Michl. - Client
  • Kern [Kerr?], Mrs.
  • Kernan, Michl. - Client
  • Kirk, Col. M.
  • Kunkle - Attorney for the other side in the Mills case
  • Leedy, Jacob - Alias Mr. Milton, client of Rawn and Seiler
  • Loy, Mrs. Elizabeth - Rented the back building on the alley from Rawn
  • Lutz, Cathe. Ann - Other side of the Mills case
  • Martin, Perry
  • Mawl, Mr. Jacob - Deceased
  • McAllister, R.
  • McClure - Attorney with Rawn, unable to practice during part of this journal
  • McCormick
  • McKenne - Walks with Rawn
  • Metzel, Mrs.
  • Mewry, Miss
  • Mills, Dr. J. G. - Client of Rawn and Emerson, they visit him in prison
  • Mills, Eliza B. - Sister of Dr. J.G. Mills who is in prison
  • Modgson, Mr. - Preached a discourse on Mr. Jacob Mawl’s death
  • Mony, Mr. - Carries home supplies that Rawn buys
  • Moore, Anthony and Cecelia - Lived with Rawn for a time
  • Morris, Rev. Mr. - Of Silver Springs
  • Neidigs, Saml. - Rawn, Emerson, and Rawn’s son stop at his house while hunting for pie cider, client of Rawn
  • Newbecker, Philip - He and his wife dined with Rawn and Frances
  • Obey, Fredr. - Rawn goes to see him about Reeme case
  • Ort, S. N. - Calls on Rawn about Dorrance & Krause & Boas cases
  • Page, Mr. - Rawn buys potatoes from him
  • Parker, B.
  • Patterson, Major General R. - Rawn receives a letter from him
  • Pearson, Judge - Judge in the Mills case
  • Penrose, Chas. B. - Of Washington City
  • Petniken, Harry - Deceased, died at Merchants Hotel in Philadelphia
  • Piolet, Mr. - Married Esther Cox in Epis. Church, brother of Victor E. Piolet
  • Piolet, Victor E.
  • Rawn, Charles, Jr. - Son of Charles Rawn
  • Rawn, John Calvin - Son of Charles Rawn
  • Rawn, Juliann - Rawn’s sister
  • Rawn, Mary - Rawn’s daughter
  • Rhawn, A.
  • Rhoads, Mo. - Rawn pays him for brown sugar
  • Rittenhouse, Reverend Mr. - Preached at Rawn’s church
  • Rop, Robt. J.
  • Sedgewick - Attorney
  • Seiler, Geo. C. A. - Attorney, Counsel for Deft. With Rawn
  • Shoop, Mr. - Runs a store which Rawn frequents
  • Shunk, Saml. J.
  • Shunks, The
  • Soy, Mrs. Elizabeth - Lives in a brick house of Rawns
  • Spangler, Geo.
  • Springmans, H.
  • Stevenson, J. M.
  • Thorny, M.
  • Trimble, James - Of Clarksville
  • Utz, Geo. - Rawn loaned $2.50 to his wife and George Utz paid him back
  • Walters, Saml. - Rawn bought flour from him
  • Watts, Judge - Took Judge Pearson’s place as judge in Mills case
  • Weber, F. W. - Rents on Miter property
  • Williams, Ezekiel - His boy swept Rawn’s chimneys
  • Wister, Chas. J. - Of Germantown, frequent correspondent of Rawn
  • Wyeth, Mrs. Mo. - Frances and Chas. Visit her
  • Wz, George and Mrs.

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