Monday, January 26, 2009

Morgan 2: Harold Morgan, Part IV

When we started high school in St. Johns Jesse Udall and I would go to school one year and stay out the next to look after the ranch chores and freight alfalfa to St. Johns and Holbrook.

It was in my first year at the St. Johns Stake Academy that I met The One and Only. She was of medium size, fair of face and figure, brunette with a quick wit. [Jessie Christensen Morgan was born June 13, 1893 in St. Johns, Apache County, Arizona]

Possessed of a pleasing and vivacious personality, she was a favorite with the girls as well as the boys. At that time she had a ‘steady’ Alfred Anderson. Because he was a good friend, I usually wound up with one of [word missing] girl friends when we went out together. Robert H. Sainsbury was the Academy principal. In my second year I was elected president of the studentbody and my favorite girl friend was elected vice president. We were also cast as principals in several school plays. I still remember one particular rehearsal. I was supposed to grasp her outstretched hands as she came towards me. My shyness nettled the coach, Su Tenney. She jumped to the stage, she rushed toward me, grasped my hands leaving me speechless. A good laugh broke the tension. During the latter part of the school year Jessie and I were frequently together. School ended May 11 and a few days later Jessie left for Salt Lake City taking my heart with her. Despite the fact I thought of her almost constantly she wrote infrequently and I learned that an old flame, Earl Patterson was escorting her around. He was a BYU student.

At the end of the summer I was relieved to learn indirectly that Jessie was moving with her sister and brother-in-law to Salt Lake City, where she would attend the Latter Day Saints High School. This was in the fall of 1912. Possessed of a strong faith and a will to achieve the things I most wanted I put my trust in a program of thought control. I remember little of that long and lonesome year. However, it was a memorable day in the summer of 1913 when she arrived in Hunt on the Stanley Steamer used to transport passengers and mail. After a brief visit Jessie still as petite and charming as ever, went on to St. Johns. After a week end trip or two to St. Johns my stock began going up as well as my spirits. In the fall we were both back at the Academy. It was a most pleasant year.

The following summer I helped my brother, Lynn [Linton Morgan] put in a crop of grain at Hunt. The summer was hot and dry. Because of the lack of water the grain did not do too well. [This is the period when Harold wrote the letters.]

During the summer our crowd together with a few others went to the White Mountains on vacation. In the group was Jessie’s old flame, Earl Patterson. During our stay with the aid of his sister and his man ‘Friday’ Grover Brown, Earl made a couple of passes at Jessie. She was most loyal and sweet and after a most enjoyable time we returned to St. Johns and became engaged.

Late that summer I went to work for C.F. Montross, publisher of the St. Johns Observer, thus fulfilling the first steps of a long cherished ambition to become a newspaperman.

To be continued...

Photo of Escudilla in the White Mountains from

1 comment:

  1. i've always really loved harold because he was a newspaper man and i am a news girl. but i had no idea what a funny writer he could be!

    (ie After a week end trip or two to St. Johns my stock began going up as well as my spirits.)