English Dialects | German Dialects | Links | Searchable Database | Home

The speaker is a 73-year-old White woman with a high school education from Mt. Pleasant, Ohio; she was recorded in 1968.

County: Jefferson
State: OH

The village of Mount Pleasant has a current population of less than 500 and was originally established as a Quaker settlement in the early nineteenth century. The Ohio Yearly Meeting House, which the speaker references, was built in 1814 and was the mother meeting house for all Quakers west of the Allegheny Mountains. The Quakers, who held anti-slavery views, helped to make the community an important stop on the Underground Railroad. In this segment the speaker talks about the Quaker traditions of Yearly and Monthly Meetings.
Inf: Uh, first I???ll have to uh, uh, I???ll have to tell you about the different kinds of Meetings, maybe [FW: Okay]. Because uh, you may have noticed that this w-, is sometimes mentioned as the Yearly Meeting House [FW: Yeah]. And that was the Annual Meeting, such as the synod or conference of a group of Meetings around in western Pennsylvania and Ohio. And because it was held once a year, it was called Yearly. And it was a business meeting together with uh, uh worship services. Uh, then the, eh, eh the individual Meeting was called a Monthly Meeting because they had a business meeting once a month. And then, in one community there might be a half a dozen or a dozen Meetings that met once a quarter. And it was, uh, that group was called the Quarterly Meeting.

Well if a, a couple wanted to marry, they had to present their intentions to the Monthly Meeting, their, the bride???s Monthly Meeting. If the groom lived in another Monthly Meeting, he had to get a certificate to come to Mount Pleasant, to marry this girl. And he had to go through his Meeting in order to get that. So they both appeared before the Monthly Meeting and expressed their intentions to marry. And a committee was appointed to look into the matter and see whether there was any reason why either of them couldn???t marry, whether they were maybe engaged to another girl or someth-, or had been or something that way. At the next Monthly Meeting, they would, uh, bring in the decision and the couple would be back again. And the girl would have a dress in her trousseau, I s-, I don???t think they called it that then, that she called her passing dress, because, if the committee uh, came back with a favoral re-, favorable report, she pa-, they p-, the couple passed Meeting. And it was all right for them to marry, so she had a special dress.

Back to US English Map
back to American Languages home