This collection contains five daily pocket diaries kept by Charles W. Hughes of Ladoga, Indiana, around the turn of the 20th century. The diaries chronicle the daily events and concerns of a middle-class family, including business affairs, politics, clubs, and sports teams. The diaries cover 1896-1898, 1905-1906, and 1908-1911.
Hughes primarily reported on events around his home in Lagoda, Indiana, but maintained interest in national politics as well. He often mentioned the results of sporting contests and his attendance at various cultural events, including a visit to the Buffalo Bill Wild West Show in 1896. Some entries mention local news, such as crimes and deaths, often in detail. Hughes sometimes wrote about national and international politics and events, such as the 1896 presidential election and the Spanish-American War. The diaries also pertain to the activities of Hughes's wife and children and to family vacations. On one occasion, they saw a group of convicts working on a large plantation in Bobo, Mississippi (July 8, 1908). Hughes added information to "Memoranda" sections in each volume, such as financial accounts.