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The diaries span the majority of Baily's adult life. As a young man, Baily was very involved in the Philadelphia community, and many of his early entries are related to the Philadelphia Historical Society, the Eromathean society, the Pennsylvania Prison Society, which advocated for the health and safety of prisoner and prison reform, The Philadelphia Society for Employment and Instruction of the Poor, and the Moyamensing House of Industry. In later entries, Baily is largely concerned with...
Joseph Scattergood, an Elder of Green St. Monthly Meeting, was a signer of the first letter of concern by the Elders of Philadelphia to Elias Hicks regarding the doctrine he was preaching (1822). Diary entries describe Quaker meetings, social calls and family news, visits to family and friends in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, births, deaths, and marriages within the Quaker community, and Scattergood's work as a school teacher.