Winthrop's note also points to the close connections between printing and the Atlantic World: Glover, the newly-retained English printer, died "of a fever" on the voyage from London (leaving scholars to debate who operated the press in his absence), and the title of the Almanack Calculated for New England, by Mr Peirce, Mariner, advertised the nautical connections of its author.
By the birth of the United States, Robert Bailey Thomas's Farmer's Almanack sold 100,000 copies annually.
the People generally complaining that they scarcely knew how the Time passed, or that they hardly knew the day of Rest, or Lords Day, when it was, for want of a Diary, or Day Book, which we call an Almanack." (1) Excusing the usual exaggerations of the philomathic prefatory matter, it seems safe to suggest that almanacs were, for almost a century, a northern production, based in New England rather than in the more southerly States.
Many continued to print the "Man of Signs"; as one almanac versified: "The old Anatomy must still be in | Or else my Almanack's not worth a Pin" (Nathan Bowen, 1723).
Twenty gentlemen in company will hardly be able, by the help of their thirty-guinea watches, to guess within two hours of the true time of night [...] whilst the poor peasant, who never saw a watch, will tell the time to a fraction, by the rising and setting of the moon, and some particular stars, which he learns from his almanack." It made the owner civilized, able to compare him or herself favorably to those in the motherland.
Expectations of readers led to stylistic consistency and a certain amount of conservatism, resulting in the antique look preserved by almanacs, such as the Farmer's Almanack, today.
James Franklin compared his 1725 New-England Diary, or Almanack favorably to the "Oxford, so generally bought by the Trading Part of the Kingdom of England." New England readers might favorably compare themselves with their English counterparts.
(3) They could be used to record the health of one's kin, such as that of Robert Wormely Carter, the owner of the Virginia Almanack for 1774, which included the promising verses:
The Con'ents of this Almanack will amply repay The Expense which the Purchase has cost, And none but a Blockhead can seriously say That his time or his Money was lost.