IT would be strange indeed if I failed to set down
anything concerning the flax which we spin, because
save for it we would have had nothing of linen except
what could be brought from England. There is no
question but that every one who reads this will know
exactly how flax is raised and spun into cloth; but yet
I am minded to explain, because we girls of Boston
have more to do with raising flax than with any other
It is sown early in the spring, and when the plants
are three or four inches high, we girls are obliged to
 weed them, and in so doing are forced to go barefoot
because of the stalls being very tender and therefore
easily broken down.
I do not believe there is a child in town who fails to
go into the flax fields, because of its being such work
as can be done by young people letter than by older
ones, who are heavier and more likely to injure the
I have said that we arc obliged to go barefooted;
but where there is a heavy growth of thistles, as
is often the case, we girls wear two or three pairs of
woolen stockings to protect our feet.
If there is any wind, we must perforce work facing
it, so that such of the plants as may by accident have
 been trodden down, may be blown back into place by
Wearying labor it is indeed, this weeding of the flax,
and yet those who come into a new world, as have we,
must not complain at whatsoever is set them to do, for
unless much time is upended, crops cannot be raised,
and we children of Boston need only to be reminded of
the famine, when we are inclined to laziness, in order
to set us in motion.
Of course you know that flax is a pretty plant, with
a sweet, drooping, blue flower, and it ripens about the
first of July, when it is pulled up by the roots and laid
carefully out to dry, much as if one were making hay.
This sort of work is always done by the men and boys,
and during two or three days they are forced to turn the
flax again and again, so that the sun may come upon
every part of it.