Chapter 23 Joseph and Hannah Marry Pt 3
Hannah POV January 1667
As I was sitting in front of the fire in the parlor of the Hurd Estate, I was thinking about my bother Joseph's wedding yesterday. I was very happy for the both of them. Sarah has become a very good friend, and I am glad she has joined the family. I admit I did envy them for finding love and getting married. I just started a courtship, and I hope It leads to marriage. I am turning 27 years old this year, and I am later than other girls my age to marry.
John Cowell is the man I started courting. The moment I saw him he peaked my interest.
It all happened about a month ago. My father asked me to go to the Cowell's to pick up a new hammer and nails he ordered. He was going to add a new room above the shop for Joseph and his new bride. I said, "Sure Papa, that is a lovely idea." The Cowell's were local blacksmiths and only lived down the road from us. It was a quarter mile walk from our home, so I did not need the carriage. I walked to the shop and entered. The counter was in the middle, and there were 2 fireplaces with men working. They were heating the metal, molding it, bending it using a large mallet and tongs. The men wore dingy clothing covered in ash, leather aprons, and leather gloves, so they would not burn their hands. I approached the counter and saw him. He was the younger version of the man at the fire. He had blond hair, blue eyes, and a thin nose. He had facial hair and ash on his cheeks from work. He looked up at me and gasped. He immediately stood up, took off his gloves and approached me. He asked in a breathless voice, "Hello, How may I help you today?" I answered, "I would like to pick up my father's order. His name is John Hurde." He said, "Your his lovely daughter, Hannah?" I said, "Yes." He said, "I heard your brother, Joseph, is getting married soon. He asked, "How come you haven't found someone yet?" I shrugged and looked up at him in his handsome blue eyes sparking like stars. I haven't met him until today." I saw his reaction when I entered. He was gasping in awe, so I knew he was attracted to me. He answered, "Is that so..". I nodded, "When I walked in this shop, you gasped. I looked at you. I saw you working and could not help but watch." He took the order down from the shelf with my father's name on it and said, "This will be 5 shillings. I gave him payment, and our hands touched. There was an spark of attraction. He said, "My name is John Cowell by the way, and I will see you at the wedding. We have to talk more then. As you can see, I have to get back to work." I said, " Okay. Nice to meet you John! I will definitely talk to you then. Bye!" As I was turning to leave, he said, "Wait!" He walked up to me and handed me a gold sewing needle. He said, "When you use this, think of me!" He winked at me and I said, "You will be on my mind." I winked back, turned around and left the shop. I stood there for 5 minutes in front of the shop, leaned against the building smiling with my hand on my racing heartbeat and breathed a sigh of relief. I looked at the needle, and remembered this encounter. I could not wait to tell my parents what just happened.
John C. POV
As she left, I turned to my father and said, "Dad, I think I just met the girl of my dreams. She is Hannah Hurde." My father looked at me and said, "Son, you know her father is a well known tailor and a drunkard. I personally found the girl very polite, and I think she is smitten in just one small meeting." I said, "Yes, I know of his reputation, but I went to school with Joseph and John Jr. Both boys have not followed in his footsteps in drunkenness. They have been really good friends of mine. Plus, I am not judging them for their father's wrongs. It's not fair to them." My father looked at me and said, " You have a point there. When are you going to ask her to court?" I answered, " The night of Joseph's wedding we will talk, and if all things go well, then I will ask permission to court. I want to take time to get to know her more." My father said, "Smart decision. I just want to let you know that you already have my blessing because I like the girl. I have met her before, and she has a strong faith in God. She is nurturing like her mother. Her mother is smart and worked as a nurse. Hannah has the same gift. Go for it son!"
"Thanks Dad." I was thinking about her. She was beautiful, and we had an instant spark. I liked her that is why I gave her my golden needle. I can not wait to see her at the wedding. I wish I could see her before, but I am working on a large order of metal tools for a local carpenter, so I do not have any free time to see her. Well, maybe she'll come visit me instead. I smiled at the thought.
Time just flew so fast. During the last couple weeks, I have been working so hard, but that order alone was 30 Pounds of English silver. The man just paid for it. Now I can go to Joseph Hurde's wedding. The reason for my anticipation is that I can connect with Hannah again.
I arrived at the Common and saw her. She looked as bright as sunshine. Her light brown hair was up in her well made bonnet. She wore a good quality green dress with her winter cape over her shoulders. She looked cold. I wished I could hold her to get warm. Her brothers, John, Benjamin and Jacob along with her parents were waiting. Joseph and his bride arrived agreed to be married, were pronounced married, and we all headed to the Hull's for the wedding meal. We were waiting for Joseph and Sarah to arrive from the courthouse. I found Hannah sitting alone. As I approached her, she smiled up at me and we started talking. She said, "You clean up well." I told her, she was very beautiful. She asked me questions about my shop. She told me more about her family and herself. She told me that her parents thought the golden needle was a sign that I was interested in courting. I told her that it was true. I said, "I knew you were the girl of my dreams when you walked in. You were breathtaking and when we touched hands, I felt a spark of attraction. Didn't you?" Hannah said, " Yes, I felt an instant attraction. I felt the spark too. I asked her, "Do you want to court?." She said, "Most Definitely! I told you that day that I met the man for me. I meant you, silly." "I know. That is why I gave you the needle. It was to stake my claim." We chuckled at our candor. "I will ask your father for permission to court soon. I really like you, Hannah." She said, "I really like you too, John. I have leave for a little while to get Sarah ready for her wedding night, but I will be back later." As she left, I got up and approached her father. Mr Hurde, May I speak to you in private for a moment? He looked at me and said, "Sure, come with me to my office."
We went into his office, and he offered me a beverage. I declined and got to the point. "Mr Hurde, I would like to ask your permission to court your daughter, Hannah?" He looked at me in the eye, and said, " We have been neighbors for a long time. I have seen your work. You are a brilliant blacksmith. I hoped that day when I sent her to pick up my order that you both would have a connection. When she came home with that needle, I knew it would lead to something more. I give you my permission to court Hannah, but there are a few rules you must follow. One is you must attend church with her every week. Two, you must come over to eat some meals with us. She must come to eat at your home as well. You must spend a lot of time together. Third, when you go to the next step which is betrothal, you must wait to be intimate. She is my daughter, and I would like her to remain pure until she marries. Do you have any problems with these conditions?" I told him "No sir. I want my future wife pure when we marry, and a little church won't hurt either. I am not a member of the church, but I do have faith even though I do not regularly attend." Her father also looked at me and said, "Also, call me John. Sir or Mr. Hurde sounds too formal." I said, "Well then, John! I will take my leave and bid goodbye to Hannah." He said, "Have a good time."
I left the office on a cloud. I saw Hannah, John Jr, Benjamin and Jacob celebrating and making a raucous about the marriage consummation. I soon joined Hannah and asked her to step aside for a minute. I told her that her father approved of our courtship, so I asked, "Hannah, Do you want to enter a courtship with me?" She said, "Yes, I would love too." I said, "Good! I want to invite you over for dinner tomorrow afternoon. Will you come? She nodded with a smile. I said, "Be there at 1:00 PM, and then you can watch me while I work and visit." She nodded and bid me goodnight. I kissed her on the cheek and left. She stood watching me holding her cheek in happiness.
Now, I must get ready to visit John C. I pick out a nice gown, put my hair up and put on my bonnet. I grab my winter cape and tell my mom that I am going to the Cowell's for dinner, and I might be home by dark. She said, "Ok, Honey...Have a good time with your new love!..."
More of Hannah's story and Joseph's marriage update.
True facts: John Cowell was a blacksmith, lived on the next block over from the Hurd's. He married Hannah Hurd in November 1667.
In that time period meals were labeled: breakfast, dinner (lunch), supper (dinner), so Hannah was invited to lunch. Also, supper in January would be dark and she would need to be home before then due to Native threats.
Next Chapter Joseph and Hannah Marry Pt 4
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