Tuesday, October 28, 2014

2014 National Archives Virtual Genealogy Fair

Every year the United States National Archives and Records Administration holds a genealogy fair.

This year's fair will be broadcast on Youtube October 28 through 30, and workshops should be available to view afterwards.

National Archives Virtual Genealogy Fair

The topics are only posted for today so far, but they include immigration and American Indian records.

The immigration lecture at 12:00 Eastern Time is of particular interest, since it addresses the historic loss of citizenship through marriage to a resident alien, such as that experienced by Jean Hayward Wessman.

Ann Prior Jarvis Diary — November 1–10, 1884

Instead of leaving Charlie Walker's account to the end, I'll include it within Ann's account. Hers will be in regular type; his in italics. Accounts like this put lie to the old historical fallacy that people who lived in times of greater infant and childhood mortality did not feel these losses as greatly as we do now.

Sat 1     November I am feeling some better to day I had a fearful time last night. Sent a letter to Sam I hope I shall go to meeting.
Nov 1st Sat 1884 Pleasant. Went to the Stake Priesthood Meeting at the Tabernacle... Pres McAllister spoke very earnestly on people being properly recommended by their Bishops in coming to the Temple. Pres E Snow gave a brief review of his recent trip to Colorado and Arizona, touched on the dull times and the depression of trade and gave the Brethren some good advice: to use economy and live within their income, and stir around and try and make improvements so as to create labor for the unemployed. I came from the Meeting before it closed and did not hear the last of his remarks.
Sun 2    Weather fine I attended meeting took Eleanor to meeting in the buggy listened to a long discourse by Br Snow heard young David Cannon preach
Received a letter from England. Coughed all night
Slept towards morning

Mon 3    Weather pleasant

Tusd 4    attended meeting

Wed 5

Thu 6     Weather fine attended fast meeting word was brought that Br Walker baby was drowned we all felt very sad at the news. I went to see it they were trying to restore it but in vain. went to the monthly meeting had wise counsel. Went for Josey
St George 6th Nov 1884 ....Went to Fast Meeting. I spoke a short time on the importance of giving the Lord the glory in all things. Showed the debt of gratitude we worms of the dust owed to our Heavenly Father for his continued care and long suffering. I spoke of some of the blessings the Lord had granted to [me] since we last met.... Touchd on the importance of learning eternal truths. While talking on this subgect a message came to me that one of My little children had met with an accident. I left the meeting, wondering what was the matter. On arriving home a sad sight met my gaze, that of the dead body of My little Boy, Helaman, who had just been drowned by sliping into a water tank. We tried all the restoratives at hand and worked with energy for a long time but he was too far gone. Then their went up a cry of lamentation and weeping and most surely we had a house of Mourning. The night was long and dreary, and hearts were sad. 
7th Nov At 10 we all went to the school house, Br Jarvis taking the little coffin in his carriage. Brs MacAllister, Blake, and Chas Smith made some very good and comforting remarks during the Service, after which we went out to the cemetery and buried him by the side of Little Sister Mary, and Luella, to sweetly sleep until the trump of God shall awake him in the morn of the First Ressurection. And yet in this sad bereavement I feel to say "The Lord gave and he took away, Blessed be the name of the Lord," but oh, how quick the shaft, how deadly the aim, how heavy the blow that robbed us of our Baby boy. 
Sat 8     Weather delightful read slept worked had a good dinner

Sun 9    Went to meeting Thomas & Em had supper with us

Mon 10     worked on the Machine Cleaned it played Checkers with George Br Owens called wanted to buy feed

Pres McAllister —  J. D. T. McAllister.

Pres E Snow —  Erastus Snow.

Helaman Walker — The youngest son of Charles Walker and his first wife, Abby Middlemass Walker, a friend of Ann's. He was sixteen months old when he died.

worked on the Machine — Probably a sewing machine.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Ann Prior Jarvis Diary — October 14–October 31, 1884

Ann gets sick and starts feeling rather useless, but as I've come to learn, life is better boring than tragic, since at the turn of a page, life can go from one to the other. After a few uneventful weeks, with the exception of a pleasant and well-attended birthday party for Ann Catherine Jarvis Milne, the next installment will include a tragedy that, as often as I've read it, cannot read without great sadness.

October      Tu     [1884]

Tus 16

Frid 17     Sent a letter to Maggie

Sat 18     Weather stormy it rained Thundered & lightened all night the house shook

Sun 19    Weather after a storm. sunshine the sunshine is welcome this morning when every thing is wet and miserable but the dusty roads is all the better for the rain. I never did appreciate a storm while it was storming it seems to me we are having great trouble it brings to my mind the death of my darling boy
I have a bad cold Father is busy makeing wine.

Mon 20     Weather cloudy I did not go to Meeting yesterday
Thomas & Em spent the evening. Br Robson called to get a bottle of wine  Amelia called this morning

Tus 21      Weather pleasant did not attend my Meeting

Wed 22     Weather warm went to the third Ward brought Josey home took Anne to the Thing^th^ [Tithing] Office
brought flour & Potatoes in the buggy for her
I feel better for a ride my health has been bad

Thu 23

Sun 26 I did not go to meeting to day I must do better I did[n't] like to wake Father to harness up Em stayed to Supper

Ann Jarvis Milne and family

Mon 27     Weather fine  Anne birthday thirty ^6 six^ years ago
I was with my dear Mother Anne was born on a Friday thirty six years ago. May her next thirty six years be more pleasant than her last has been. her sisters & George agreed to give her a surprise party we each took our pic nic fourteen children sat down to the table besides the babes in arms
there was Eighteen Childeren all our own nine of our family of grown folks making twenty seven all our family that was here

[In margin: spent five dollars for Josy Dress and twenty eight cents for lining]

Tus 28    Weather cloudy rather cold I feel tired this morning wrote a letter to Sam

Wed 29    I am sick to day with severe cold
was obliged to keep my bed most of the day

Thur 30     Sick received a letter from Heber

Friday 31    I have been in bed untill three o clock
it seem my life is very useless
If I work I get warm and then take cold

From Charles Lowell Walker's Diary
He has no journal entries for this period.

more pleasant than her last has been — Ann Catherine Jarvis Milne (1848-1956) was born into poverty, lived her childhood in poverty, and then became a plural wife and was living through the difficulties of federal persecutions in the 1880s. She died just a couple of weeks before her 108th birthday.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

A Remembrance

As time moves on, the meaning and experience of memory and grief shifts and changes. Anniversaries, birthdays, holidays, reunions come and go, and our loved ones are sometimes with us, sometimes far away, sometimes beyond the veil. John A. Widtsoe wrote long ago to some grieving parents,
You have hard days ahead of you; that we know from our own experience in losing children. We can tell you, however, that though your bereavement is seldom equaled in a generation of time, yet through the possession and help of the Spirit of God and the healing influence of time, your grief will be assuaged. Your loss has been so grievous, so great, so unusual that mortal power of itself is unable to bring peace to you. Look upward. Continue to take the Lord into partnership, and the sweet influence of heaven will touch your hearts and transform your feelings.
Elder Widtsoe could not know have known that he was echoing and expanding upon words Abraham Lincoln wrote to another grieving family.
In this sad world of ours, sorrow comes to all, and it often comes with bitter agony. Perfect relief is not possible, except with time. You cannot now believe that you will ever feel better. But this is not true. You are sure to be happy again. Knowing this, truly believing it, will make you less miserable now. I have had enough experiences to make this statement. 

Remembering our beautiful niece, cousin, granddaughter, daughter, and sister Allison Ann Bowers (January 21, 1999 - October 26, 2010).

Our thoughts and prayers are with Allison's family on this tender anniversary.

We are, as ever, grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ and the promise of the resurrection and that families can be together forever after death.
The soul shall be restored to the body, and the body to the soul; yea, and every limb and joint shall be restored to its body; yea, even a hair of the head shall not be lost; but all things shall be restored to their proper and perfect frame. And now...this is the restoration of which has been spoken by the mouths of the prophets—And then shall the righteous shine forth in the kingdom of God. (Alma 40:23-25.)
(ObituaryThoughts from Jared, November 1, 2010.)

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Ann Prior Jarvis Diary — September 26–October 13, 1884

I sympathize with the feelings Ann expresses about not feeling like she accomplished much on any given day. The regular routine of life rarely feels like an accomplishment, and when you add chronic illness, such as Ann suffered, it's easy to overlook the great and abiding influence she had on her family at the time and over many generations.

The Thursday, October 2 Fast Meeting seemed rather uneventful, but taken together with Charles Lowell Walker's report of the same meeting, it's a lovely insight into Mormon religious practices.

Ann notes that Anthony Ivins preached on the Word of Wisdom; until well past the turn of the 20th century, the Word of Wisdom was not practiced as it is today, and many pioneers regularly used coffee and tea. The St. George pioneers usually had some of their sweet Dixie wine at meals and special occasions as late as the time of Prohibition, and a variety of liquors would have been used primarily medicinally.

Friday 26  Weather windy  I slept all morning I have taken Cold sent a letter to England I hope they will get it

Sat 27   Weather warm days, cold nights, bought a clock for Josy to take to school it cost two dollars seventy five cents also a broom 50 cents

Sun 28   Weather dull it is Thomas birthday Em will have a surprise party for him to night I have made the rice pudding we had a good time at Em spent a pleasant evening John Woodbury recited Josey favoured us with two

Mon 29   Weather pleasant  I went with the buggy and fetched Josey home from the third Ward School went to the store took Amelia riding posted a letter to London

Tus 3029 Weather fair going to get Josey took Em for a ride

Wed 1   Weather windy

Thursday 2   Weather cloudy attended Fast Meeting only four men & two ladies but there was a good sp[i]rit prevails
I know it is good to attend Fast meetings

Fri 3   Weather cool mornings I have not gone out to day
Mrs Woodbury called. Mary brought me some Chow ^chow^
I have not done much work to day

Sat 4   Weather pleasant I had my cough very bad for ^hours [indecipherable]
put a jar of grapes down for pickles

Sun 5   went to meeting loaned the buggy to Thomas he took Em for a ride they spent the evening ^here^
Tony Ivings [Anthony Ivins] preached on the word of wisdom
I felt ashamed of my self I ought to have had that sermon lived up to for many years past

Mon 6   Weather cold mornings Br Greenwood from Nutrioso called here to day. I do not know where this day is gone to    had a letter from Charley

Tus 7   attended relief society meeting bought a Grammer for Josey. Price sixty cents

Wed 8   Weather pleasant

Thu 9   let Josey have fifty Cents in money

Friday 10  Wea[ther] pleasant

Sat 11   Churned cooked dinner

Sun 12   Weather pleasant  I did not attend meeting I did not feel very well

Mon 13   I have not accomplished much to day boiled some fruit

From Charles Lowell Walker's Diary
St. George Oct 2nd  Pleasant daytime, cold at night. Went to Fast Meeting and spoke a short time, confessing the hand of the Lord in delivering me from trouble, and when in a sore strait he heard me. I touched a little on the Book of Enoch and the pre existence of our spirits and the great privillege we had of proving ourselves before our Father and be true to him and dillegent in keeping all his commandments. The Brethren and sisters testified to the good spirit that prevailed at the Meeting. We had an enjoyable time, tho but few were present. Better at times than Sabbath meetings.

Sat 4, 3 P. M. Went to the Seventies Meeting. There was not much done or said that was pleasing to me, as some of the brethren seemed to possess the spirit of fault finding...

Sunday 12th Oct. 1884 Pleasant...went to Meeting. Pres. Mcallister gave a brief synopsis of conference news...Jno Morgan was chosen to fill the vacancy in the first Presidency of the Seventies...

John Woodbury — John Taylor Woodbury (1863-1936), a younger brother of George F.'s wife Eleanor.

Mrs Woodbury — Ann Cannon Woodbury (1832-1921)

Br Greenwood from Nutrioso — Adam Greenwood (1857-1904) who may have brought the letter from Charles Defriez Jarvis.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Brigham Young in the Southern Settlements, 1864

One of the modern wonders of the field of documentary editing is the work of LaJean Purcell Carruth.

The Church History Library has recently released LaJean's transcription of remarks made by Brigham Young during a trip to Southern Utah in 1864. His remarks tended to be rather practical; in Fillmore he told the people about the continuing nature of revelation:
I say to you, as I can to the whole world, there has not yet been a revelation given to this people from the time Joseph commenced to receive revelation but what would be [altered] provided the people were capable of receiving more. The Lord has to speak to the people according to their capacity, not according to his capacity. We are not prepared to receive all the heavens has for us. The Lord gives revelation upon revelation, here a little and there a little. Those precepts he gives we should improve upon them. . . . The Lord is laboring and has been for long time to prepare a people to receive blessings. He sent his gospel, called Joseph, gave the Book of Mormon, to prepare us to . . . receive all the blessings the earth can bestow, and the blessings of eternity. You and I believe alike with regard to the fullness of his power and goodness. He has blessings and wants bestow them on the whole human family. We believe alike. Why are we not blessed then? We are not ready to receive the blessings.
In Beaver, the teams were all hitched up to leave when Brigham Young turned and walked into the bowery [1] and said, "I want the attention of the congregation. I shall not stop to have singing and prayers. Do your praying when you get home and sing when you please. I have a few words to say [and] I am going to say them."

He told the people of Parowan to beautify their town, and the children of Parowan to "learn your letters, to spell your single syllables, to learn to put together letters [and] syllables to make words, and words [to make] sentences, and then to make subjects, until you become [a] man and woman worthy of the character of intelligent beings."

On September 14, he told the people of St. George gathered in the new Bowery[2] to keep working at developing their water supplies.
It is the will and pleasure of the Almighty [that] he change the veins of this water in the mountains and causes them to come out in springs when he pleases. And if we will work with our might and in good faith the Lord will work and he will preserve us from those that would overrun. He had not the place for us to go to prepared, but he had these mountains, and until he has, he will preserve us in these mountains. He will withhold the [frost] and send the [rain] that the Latter-day Saints may not be afflicted.
The people of St. George were working hard to build the St. George Tabernacle, started the previous year as a public works project to keep the people from starving to death in the desert, and as Brigham Young spoke, they were moving into a period of great food shortages and severe hunger and malnutrition.

His comments the next day emphasized the fact that the people listening to him were new members of the Church. Several people in the congregation would have been members since the 1830s, but most had been baptized in the 1840s or 1850s, and needed to be trained in the practicalities of Mormon religious life. He said:
When you come to a meeting like this and one of servants of God get up to pray, let every man and woman be in silence. . . . When a man [is] engaged in praying and we are looking away, and they are looking at the bonnet of one, and how the collar of another sits [and thinking] I wonder where my cattle is, and how my meat is I put in the stove, and how the children are doing, and the mind[s] of the people are all over creation, the Lord can’t bless such a people. . . . Mothers: take this lesson and carry it home with you, and when the father is engaged in prayer have the children kneel down with you, and have them pray and teach them to pray as their father prays, and ask for the things he asks for, and when a word is spoken keep that in your heart. If the people can do this with their eyes staring around, they can do what I can’t do.
Charles Lowell Walker did not report on the conference at the time, but later he noted,
Bro Brigham and a number of the twelve Apostles and others paid us a visit about the last of Sept and spent three days with us and gave us some very good instructions and doctrine on our present condition, and future hapines. We had a time of rejoiceing and were comforted by the rich teachings they imparted unto us. And I must confes I felt sorry and even lonesome when they left us. I felt in my heart to bless them for their kindnes and good will towards us on the mission. (245)

After Brigham Young left St. George, he traveled through Gunnison and Manti.[3] His final comments were in Mount Pleasant on September 27. He said:
 [It is] a little over 500 miles that we have traveled from the north to the south to visit the saints this season. Settlement after settlement, [we have] gathered the people together under a bowery like this, and you would think you was in Salt Lake City at headquarters. [We] see the faces of those that is familiar to us, and see the large congregations of the saints. It cheers and comforts and stimulates the brethren, and they feel they are not forgotten. The elders went and preached to them in foreign lands and gathered them, and now they are not forgotten, [but] still [they are prayed] for and preached to and presided and led and guided and counseled and directed. What for? The building up the kingdom of God for the establishment of the kingdom that Daniel saw and wrote about.
Well, that was a lot of text of his remarks, and you can read the rest of them at the Church History website, but what a great addition to the historical record to have these comments, since they were taken down in shorthand and previously unavailable.

[1] A bowery was a temporary structure built of posts with a covering of tree boughs.

[2] Since the Saints had just begun construction on the Tabernacle, they would have met in the Bowery. The first St. George Bowery was directly south of the Tabernacle, but a new Bowery was built for Brigham Young's visit, as the short-lived newspaper Veprecula noted, "on the block north of the public square, between the tithing office and the St. George Hall. It is 85 feet long, 45 feet wide, and 14 feet in height. The center of the roof is a deck 11 feet wide, supported by stupendous cedar and pine pillars 8 feet apart, with sawed lumber joints bolted firmly to each one of them." (Diary of Charles Lowell Walker, 244.)

[3] Things remained interesting in St. George for a few days after the visit: on Sunday Orson Pratt, Jr., publicly separated himself from the Church and was excommunicated. See more in Richard and Mary VanWagoner, "Orson Pratt, Jr.: Gifted Son of an Apostle and an Apostate," Dialogue 21:1. The VanWagoners note in the article that the portrayal of Pratt and his family in The Giant Joshua is off base. (Of course that can be said about many of the people in that book.)

The map is the 1870 Gamble map from David Rumsey Maps.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Ann Prior Jarvis Diary — September 13–25, 1884

This section of the diary includes stake conference, slightly cooler weather, visits from friends, and Josephine starting a job teaching in the St. George Third Ward School.

Sat 13 Attended conference to day took Josey up to the wine cellar as she plays in the farce

Sun 14 Weather cloudy had a slight shower attended conference  I have enjoyed the conference more when there was four of the Apostles but if I observed all I was taught   I shall be a blest woman
we went to Em to supper & spent the evening there

Mon 15  Weather warm in the day time but cold at nights
I feel cold as I sleep on the porch. had a visit from Br Reidhead from Woodruff

Tus 16  Weather pleasant Father took Eleanor & Rose to the Temple  Eleanor stayed with me I took her for a ride before taken her home her health is poor

Wed 17   Weather fine

Thu 18   Weather pleasant had a ride received letters from Arizona

Friday 19    Weather warm

Sat 20  Weather warm I went with Father to the spring had a pleasant ride took Anne for a ride in the evening

Sun 21   Weather cloudy this morning I took Father to the Temple in the buggy then took Amelia for a ride then Anne came stayed to supper

Mon 22   Weather fine I have the house to myself as Josey has commenced to teach in the third ward

Tus 23   Weather fine I did not goo to meeting

Dr. Silas Gardner Higgins

Wed 24   Weather pleasant I took Elanor to Br Higgins
I brought Josephine home from School Charles Robson called to see us an old friend we had not seen him for twenty three years.

Thursday 25  Weather very pleasant cool nights I had a good night rest last night I am very thankful for it  Oh how thankful we ought to be for good health when we suffer pain and affliction we are humbled when we are well we are apt to be haughty and think we are important I feel my sufferings are for my good if I were well all the time I might forget my heavenly Father and he would be slow to hear my prayers in the day of trouble  I took Eleanor to Dr Higgins he had gone to Washington took Amelia for a ride

From Charles Lowell Walker's Diary
[No entries until October 2.]

took Josey up to the wine cellar as she plays in the farce — Your guess is as good as mine!

Br Reidhead from Woodruff — John Reidhead Jr. (1827-1916) of Woodruff, Arizona, was an 1877 Arizona pioneer. He could have brought news from Ann's children in Arizona. Some of these church leaders, including Charles Robson, could have been heading to Salt Lake City to General Conference.

Br/Dr Higgins — Silas Gardner Higgins (1822-1904). He was practicing as a physician for both St. George and Silver Reef and the surrounding communities. His practice would have been mostly limited to herbal remedies, and there's not much he could have done for Eleanor with her severe heart problem.

Charles Robson — Charles Innes Robson (1837-1894) one of the founders of Mesa, Arizona.

Pat Sullivan Henshaw, "Silas Gardner Higgins," [digitized photograph], Source.