Why did William write the Diary?

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William left no record of why he began to write his diary or for what audience. Some commentators think that diarists always have an implied audience but William seemed to be writing only for himself as a kind of memory aid.

Indeed, as grandson Henry Ziegler Steinway would later point out, William used the diary very effectively in lawsuits. He seldom referred to writing it; more often he mentioned reading parts of it. He had a compelling reason to begin the Diary, of course, as his choice of title, “Daily Diary of Wm. Steinway & wife!” on page one indicates. Although it is highly unlikely that William ever considered the Diary would be a joint effort, his exuberant heading conveys the 26-year old’s joyful anticipation of a new life with 17-year old bride-to-be, Regina Roos.