Tuesday, June 29, 2010

In Support of Polygamy

A Talk Given in Support of Polygamy by Christianna Peel - 1870

Dear Sisters!

We have come together today to express our views in regard to the Bill now before Congress known as the Cullom Bill. I shall try to offer a few remarks if the spirit of God will assist me. We have embraced the Gospel of Christ, not because we were compelled to do so, but because the spirit of God moved us and bore testimony to the truth of its principle; which principles we know are for salvation to all who obey them. We have left our native lands and traveled thousands of miles for the sake of having the liberty to live up to these principles; we left our relatives, the friends of our youth and the places which were dear to us for the sake of this Liberty. We imagined that when we should come to this country we would have the liberty to live in peace and especially to enjoy that liberty which every woman would seek, namely to be free to choose for herself a companion, not only for life but for eternity also. We had heard about the glorious document, the Constitution of the United States, bequeathed to the citizens of this great Republic which citizenship we claim to hold; if not all of us by birth then by adoption, as our husbands either born or naturalized citizens of this country. I said we had heard about this glorious document, which gives freedom to all to worship God in accordance with the dictates of their conscience. But, how do we find it? By reading this document which goes under the name of the Cullom Bill, we find that either must we have been greatly mistaken about this great liberty that we expected to find here, or else there must be men entirely void of all righteousness who are willing to take away from us this liberty which they so gloriously hold forth to every nation. I said, “entirely void of all righteousness.” For it would be impossible for a man with the least sense of righteousness to try to rob a peaceful and honest people of this heavenly boon which is highly appreciated by all nations, the liberty to worship God as their hearts may dictate. They say that they have such kind feelings for the women of Utah; they want to liberate us. I will ask: from what? Their wish is to liberate us from being chaste and true to our husbands and bring us to destruction if it be in their power. They say they will imprison our husbands. For what? For nothing but obeying the Laws of the Almighty which are not only revealed in these days but also in days of old which we can see through the bible. I wonder if that man, if he can have the honor of being called a man, who framed this bill, ever saw a bible. For I think if ever he saw a bible he had seen something about this principle: Plural Marriage, which he pronounces to be a crime. But, my dear sisters, we verily find that such wicked men are found who will rob us of our liberty. Therefore, let us stand by our husbands and live humble before God and pray to Him for deliverance and He who has all Power in His Hands will smite these wicked men with a sore affliction and he will deliver his saints.

Christianna Peel

Female Relief Society, September 20, 1875

Meeting held Sept 20, 1875
Opened with singing, "On the Mountain Tops Appearing".  Prayer by Sister Peel.  Singing "Let Us Our Journey Pursue". Sister Morrison addressed the meeting and said that the many deaths of friends who were called to account for the deeds done in the flesh. Caused her to reflect and ask herself the question, "are you ready to go?"  Said she knew there were many trials, but whom the Lord loveth, he chasteneth".  Jesus said "as we sow, so shall we reap."  If we wish to be saved, we must save ourselves, and not depend upon others to save us.
The minutes of a former meeting were read and accepted.  The teaachers reports were read.  Sister Frantzen said that the people in her ward felt well and that there was a general desire to assist as much as it was in their powers.  Sister Morrison spoke on the education of the children.  Said it was the duty of the sisters to do all in their power that their children might have a good education and exhorted them to urge the matter.
Sister Simpson, Peel and several others bore their testimonies.
Meeting closed with singing and prayer by Sister Peterson
Hilda Dehlin, Secretary

Monday, June 28, 2010

Excerpts from "Nickels From A Sheep's Back ~ Introduction by Pearle M. Olsen

"When I was a little girl, I asked Papa for a penny or a nickel at various times.  I had not grown to the dime or quarter age or I may have asked for those, but a five-cent piece of money was very large in my eyes then and for some years afterward.

Papa always laughed and asked, 'A nickel?'  ' Now where in the world do you think I would find a nickel?' Then he giggled while exclaiming, 'Go get it off a sheep's back!'

I was old enough to have learned from adult conversation that when Papa sold his wool clip he received some money.  I had no idea how it all worked, but wool and money were closely associated in my mind and getting nickels seemed an easy enough thing to do.

Through ensuing years, I saw Papa (John K. Madsen) evolve from a hard working younger man  of uncertain income ~~when nickels
 were even a luxury --- to an older, still work-dedicated man of achievement and a more certain income.  My admiration for him went far beyond a natural daughter-affection for a father.  I learned too much about the obstacles overcome by him to disregard the fact that his life had written an important chapter in Utah history that must be told."


"Anyone who claims the life of a sheepherder, or a sheepman, to be an easly life has never worked with sheep himself.  Seldom has it been a quick step from a wage earning herder to a manager on shares, and from that to a full-fledged sheepman.  Some individuals have claimed that those steps were the general easy procedure in becoming a sheepman of substance.  But they failed to take into account the required years of apprenticeship in loneliness, patience, experience, and tolerance for a rough and ready job, the acceptance of constant challenge in the elements, and the uncertainties in the political manipulation that effect the lamb and wool markets most of the time.


Three people played heavy roles in John K's life, and without any one of them the results of his days of accomplishment could have been dramatically altered.  His mother's basic, built-in fortitude strongly influenced his childhood -- and supplied direction to his character.

His third wife brought to him a fine business-sense that strengthened and sustained him as she assisted in establishing an infant purebred business, and together they nursed it to prominent maturity.  And all the while she cared for his home and his motherless children.

Later, a son-in-law proved to be much like the father-in-law when he became the right arm of accomplishment and support during John K's last fifteen years of life.  For another twelve years the younger man continued to operate the John K. Madsen Rambouillet farm with increased honors and distinction. Each of these three individuals provided fascinating color and character during the three score and ten years of John K.'s role on the stage of life."      ~~~ Pearl M. Olsen


Sunday, June 27, 2010

Leather Postcard to Carrie Nielson

July Pioneers of the Month

THE DANES IN MT. PLEASANT (taken from Knudsen Chronicles page 59)


The Knudsen family lived in the southwest quarter of town, called the "Copenhagen District"  because so many Danes made their homes there.  An interesting culture developed.  Because there were so many Sorensens, Madsens, Olsens, Hansens, Rasmussens, Jensens, etc., nicknames based on former hometown, physical characteristics, or a humorous happening became common.  For instance, James Christensen, who came from the town of Hobro, was commonly called James Christensen Harbro.  Ole Sorensen, who said the word 'absolutely' often, was called Ole Absolutely.  Examples of other amusing names were Olaf Coffee Pot, Chris Golddigger, Stinkbug Anderson, Fat Lars, Dirty Mart, Alphabet Hansen, Bert Fiddlesticks, Otto By-Yingo Anderson, Pete Woodenhead, Long Peter, Little Peter, Salt Peter, Shimmy Soren, and Shingle Pete.

The Word of Wisdom was not stressed so much at the time, so they followed the customs of their homeland and continued to drink coffee and homemade brew called Danish Beer.  Symbols of hospitality were the coffee pot simmering at the back of the stove and freshly-made cinnamon buns or cookies covered with a colorful cloth waiting to be shared.  If anyone chided them, they commonly replied with a smile, "Brother Joseph never meant the Word of Wisdom for the Danes."

One Dane explained, "Not all the goot tings should be left to the yentiles."

Preaching at a funeral of a friend, a Dane said, "He has gone to Heaven where there is no sorrow, or pain, or Word of Wisdom."

The Danes had a great ability to laugh at themselves: "The Danes of Mount Pleasant, it was said, had pretty wives, while the Swedes had homely wives.  The reason:  the Swedes were hard workers, while the Danes loafed around and picked out the pretty girls when they came to town."

At times, old prejudices from Europe caused problems, but laughing about it seemed to help defuse anger:  "A Dane and a Swede were arguing about the virtues and vices of the two nations.  As the argument reached its peak, the furious Swede demanded, 'What could be dirtier than a dirty Dane?' To which the Dane triumphantly responded, 'A clean Swede."'

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Rosenlof Family from Sweden ~ submitted by Betty Gunderson Woodbury

  The Rosenlof Family Picture was taken soon after they arrived in the Salt Lake Valley from Sweden in 1860. They sailed on the "Wm Tapscott" from Liverpool 11 May 1860, arriving in New York 16 June 1860. They finally settled at Mt Pleasant in the fall of 1860. The family of five included Nils Pehrsson Rosenlof 1826-1908, Anna Marie Rosengren Rosenlof 1835-1875 and their three children Olaf 1854-1932, Janne (John) 1857-1922 and Emma Amalie1860-1861. Five more children were born in Mt Pleasant, Martin Albert 1862-1947, Helma Emogine 1865-1869, Mary Annie 1867-1940, Niels Frank 1870-1941 and Fritz 1875-1937

Two years later my Great Grandmother Kirsti Louisa Rosengren Beckstrom immigrated to Mt Pleasant through the encouragement of her half-sister, Anna Marie Rosengren Rosenlof. Louisa arrived just three weeks before her sister's 4th child Martin Albert was born 22 Oct 1862. She lived with her sister and helped with the children until she married Andrew Beckstrom , 28 Oct 1863. He arrived from Sweden in 1859 with the 8th Handcart Co. They had 11 children, 8 grew to adulthood. (Their picture is included.)

Andrew and Louise Beckstrom

Poetry of the Children of Hamilton School ~ Estimated years 1900 to 1910.

If anyone can enlighten us as to when this poetry was written, let us know. 

These are sent in by David R. Gunderson of Ogden.  Hopefully there will be more. 

Kathy: In an earlier comment I mentioned Margaret Nielsen who joined the North Sanpete High School staff for the school year 36-37. That was a sparkling year for new faculty at the school, most of it home grown. Eugene (Granny) Peterson, quarterback on the team in 1928, returned as coach. Grant Johansen returned as history/civic teacher and later was elected mayor. Harry Sundwall, from Fairview, was the typing/ short hand teacher and later a nationally recognized professor at Arizona State Univ. Margaret moved on to become the third or forth highest ranking WAC in WW2. lee

Friday, June 25, 2010

Mrs. John Knudsen Obituary ~ death 14 October 1921

Mt. Pleasant's Oldest Lady Dead

Mrs. John Knudsen,  ninety-two  years of age, the oldest in Mt. Pleasant and affectionately known to hundreds of friends as "Grandma Knudsen", died at two o'clock this morning at the family home surrounded by all of her immediate family.

Mts. Knudsen was born in Vejle, Denmark, January 28, 1829.  She was the only one in a family of nine to embrace the Gospel taught by the Latter Day Saints.  On August 21, 1856, (27 October 1857 was the correct date) she was married to John Knudsen, and in 1864 the young couple began the long and tiresome journey to Utah.  One little daughter died on the sailing vessel and  was buried at sea.  They were in Captain Preston's Company in crossing the plains, driving an ox team and walking almost the entire distance.

Their oldest son, John Knudsen, now a deputy sheriff at Bingham, was born in Wyoming on their way to Utah.  They have made their home continuously since coming to Utah in Mt.  Pleasant.  Only two sons, John Knudsen and Andrew Knudsen of Metropolis, Nevada, and her husband survive her, also 14 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren.  One little daughter died soon after their arrival in Mt. Pleasant, and another daughter, Mrs. Magnus G. Rolph, died thirty years ago leaving three little daughters, now Mrs. George Petersen, Mrs. J. Leo Seely, and Mrs. Vern Gundersen.  To these children Mrs. Knudsen was a mother rearing them as her own.

Funeral services will be held next Monday afternoon at two o'clock in the South Ward Chapel.  Monday will also mark the ninety-third anniversary of Mrs. Knudsen.

Oldest Mt. Pleasant Citizen Honored and Dies

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Veteran's Memorial Service on Memorial Day

On Memorial Day we attended the annual Memorial Day Service the Veterans Group does each year.  Above you see the marble bench that was donated by this group of veterans in combination with Leon Monk, who did the marblework as a donation.  The veterans payed for the  cost of the marble only. Behind the marble monument are the names of each deceased veteran buried in the Mt. Pleasant Cemetery.

The Story of Thistle's Big Sign ~ Nickels From a Sheep's Back ~ Pearl M. Olsen

Soon after 1930 an itinerant called on John K. (Madsen) in Mt. Pleasant and asked for a painting job.  During their conversation they decided that to paint a large roadside sign would be a novel and informative thing to do.  John K. had toyed with the idea of doing something of the sort to help direct ram buyers to his ranch.

They sometimes drove north rather than south, after arriving at Thistle, when approaching from the east via Price, Utah.  Modern road maps were not as easy to obtain nor as complete as they later became ~so strange, prospective buyers could benefit by some additional directions on a sign.

The coming of the painter was timed right.  While riding to Thistle he and John K. explored and evaluated various possibilities.  The place most favored by John K. was on the face of a mountain west of Thistle.  But because of its inaccessability they decided against the location.  At last they settled on the jutting rock protruding from the north mountain that faced the big bridge leading to the south road.  Mt. Pleasant was approximately 35 miles south of Thistle.

There was an almost smooth surface on the protruding rock and it provided an excellent base for a sign.  An area of about 25 by 30 feet was marked off and painted black and white.....

It was an immediate attention getter and could be seen by anyone approaching it from any direction.  John K. was pleased with the sign and with the workmanship.  The paint proved to be of superior quality and was repainted only once during its years after a layer of rock slipped off the sign several years following its initial painting.

A nephew of John K's, Allan Madsen, was an art student, and he was hired to repaint the sign.  That second coat endured, remaining on the rock-point until the new Highway 89 improvement program demolished it, in order to widen the road.  The State Highway department office personnel are unable to furnish the date of the demolition.  They say only that it was in one of the early years of  the 1960's.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

North Sanpete High School Seniors - 1926

Happy Birthday Clair Tuttle ~ 1987

Front Row L to R:  Peter Hafen, Clair Tuttle, Jody Tuttle, Frayne Christensen, Dick Ruiz
Back Row L to R:  Jack McAllister, Ray Peterson, Glen Jorgensen, Terrel Seely (peeking out), Mack Wilkey, Odell Christiansen

A little something new to add to our pages.  Back in "olden times".  Well, just a few years back, the Mt. Pleasant Fourth Ward High Priests would go around to its members' homes the week of their birthday and sing  "Happy Birthday" to them and give them a card and take a picture.  We still have a few of those pictures kicking around.  It is fun just to remember faces back then ~ some of them have passed away now. We sincerely hope you will enjoy them too.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Friday, June 18, 2010

Those Who Went to St. George to Build the St. George Temple

Building of St. George Temple Work was commenced on the St. George Temple, March II. 1873; as in the past, the citizens of Mt. Pleasant readily responded to the call. Those at home donated liberally and on December 2nd. the following men and boys left their homes to perform labor on the temple: Lars Rasmussen, Christian Christensen, Hans Hansen, Soren Jacobsen, Chris Peel, August Nelson, William Olson, Jacob Jensen, Hans Davidson, Olaf Rosenlof, Thomas Coates, Christian Madsen, Thomas Fuller, Andrew Rolph, Abraham Day, Ezra Day, James C. Christensen, Joseph Burton, Fred Mauritz Petersen, Nels Syndergaard, Frank Keller, with Andrew Madsen (Harbro), Jake Bohne, Bennett Monk and Peter Rasmussen as teamsters. The four last named soon returned to Mt. Pleasant, while the others remained until during the spring of 1874. At the present writing, 1939. the only two of the entire party now living are Andrew Rolph and William Olson. At the time the party left Mt. Pleasant, they were instructed by the bishop to apply to the bishops of the Wards for shelter and supplies while camping; however, at Indian Creek or Pine Dug Way they encountered a very severe blizzard, and after vainly endeavoring to travel on, were compelled to camp in the open without any shelter whatsoever, and for a time feared they would all perish. Finally, December 14th, after having traveled in a heavy, blinding snowstorm most of the way, they reached St. George safely. January 4th, four loads of sup plies were taken to them by James Larsen, Sylvester Barton, Soren Hansen Jacobsen, and Christopher Johnson. taken from History of Mt Pleasant by Hilda Madsen Longsdorf pp 141-142

A GreenHorn Swede in America - - - Autobiography of William Olson

My first taste of genealogy came when I found this history in my grandparents' attic.  Why it was there, I have no idea.  The auto biography is of William Olson.  Even though I have Olsen ancestors, this is not one of them.  However, for me it was exciting to find this history.  I must have been only about 13 at the time and the bug for genealogy has never left me.  Hopefully, someone out there will appreciate reading it.  I remember sharing it with Maxi Olson Christiansen several years before she died.  Whether anyone else has it, I do not know.

My father, John Olson, and my mother, Sophia Maria Skrevelus, were both born in Jamjo Soken Bleking Lan, Sweden.  Father was born October 27, 1818, and mother was born December 24, 1819.

In 1848 my father sold his farm in Sweden and moved over to Bornholm, a little island 16 by 20 miles square, in the Baltic Sea.  He bought a farm there, consisting of thirty acres.  He stayed there until 1866. My mother having joined the Mormon faith, was baptized in 1852, being one of the first to be baptized in Scandinavia.  In 1866, my father sold his farm, horses, and cattle, and turned his money over to the Church to emigrate the people that were not able to help themselves.  He kept enough to emigrate his own family which consisted of Kathryn, myself, and Andrew and Hannah Maria and James.  I was born on Bornholm, the third day of June, 1853, and was baptized the tenth of April 1866.  We sailed from Bornholm the twelfth of April as far as Kjobenhagen where we stayed ten days then we took a boat for Keil, Germany and from there by train for Hamburg, Germany.  The next day, May 25, we went on board the sailing vessel "Kennelworth". Captain Brown.  We were nine weeks crossing the Atlantic Ocean.  Our food consisted of sailor hardtac, fat bacon, cabbage, and black coffee.  The bugle would wake us up in the morning at seven o'clock.  We had to be on deck for exercises for one hour then we had breakfast.  When the weather was so that the ship didn't roll too much we would dance for a couple of hours.  On Sundays we had religious services. Two returned missionaries, Samuel Sprague and Martin Lund from Ft. Green had charge of the company, 686.  Thirty-six of the emigrants died and were buried at sea.  They would sew them up in heavy canvas bags with about fifty pounds of rocks at the feet to sink them.  They would place the corpse on a plank and at a signal from the Captain, they would tilt the plank up and the corpse would slide into the ocean.

The Captain and sailors treated us fine except the cook.  He was the meanest man I ever saw.  In the morning he would yell, "Come to breakfast, you Mormon S of Bs".  Our ship caught fire from the kitchen but after a few hours of fire fighting it was put out after burning part of the kitchen.  On the 17th of July we landed at Castlegarden, New York.  That night we took a steam boat for New Haven.  We were a moltley crowd traveling on foot carrying our luggage and carrying babies and some leading one or two.  The road or street was not paved and the mud and slush came up to our shoetops, and a howling mob followed us and called us all the dirty names they could think of and pelted us with mud clods.  From New Haven we took a train for Detroit, Chicago, Quincy, Ill., and Saint Joseph, Missouri, the terminal of the railroad.  From there we sailed up the Missouri River on a river steamer as far as where Omaha stands now.  There was but seven houses there then, and they were just small lumber houses.  There they were moving the biggest house up the hill with three yolk of oxen.  We started our journey across the plains the second of August.  We traveled with sixty five wagons, five yolk of oxen on each wagon.  Three hundred and twenty five oxen.  Joseph L. Rawlings was captain of the real large train.  He had one helper or vice captain, one teamster for each wagon and five night herders that took that herd of oxen out to feed and drove them into camp in the morning.

We had the bugler we had on the ship so that the bugle would call us at six o'clock in the morning.  We had one hour to get breakfast and then the oxen would be driven in so we would be ready to start by eight o'clock.

In the evening the music would start up, the young and old would dance for an hour.  All the young folks had to walk, the old would ride most of the time.  At nine o'clock in the evening the bugle would sound for prayer before going to bed.  My father bought a cow in Iowa.  He intended to lead that cow not only to Salt Lake but to Mt. Pleasant, a distance of twelve hundred miles.  He would turn her with the oxen at night to feed.  A good many oxen got alkalied and died, and I wished many times that our cow would get a drink of alkalie water but she came in every morning.  But she got tender footed.  There was plenty of shoes of the oxen but they were too large for the cow; so we had to tie pieces of gunnisac or anything we could find along the road around her feet so that she could travel.  And I was in the same condition.  We had been on journey so long that my shoes and clothes were worn out but I could pick up old clothes that other companies had thrown away.  Sometimes I would have on two rights and sometimes two lefts.

Our food was sourdough bread, fat bacon, buffalo meat, coffee and sugar.  We were not allowed to kill anymore buffalo than we could eat.  We were not allowed to waste any of the meat.

The Indians were friendly whenever they came to our camp.  Captain Rawlins would give them sugar and beads and small mirrors.  It was orders from Brigham Young to always treat the Indians kindly.  That is the reason we never had a train destroyed or a man killed during the twenty-three years we carried emigrants across the plains.  We sent an average of twelve trains each year.  There were many other trains destroyed and teamsters killed.  We came to one train that had been burned and all hands killed.  There was nothing left but the wagon tires. We stopped and buried the dead.  The Indians had gone - there was nothing left but the smoking embers of the  wagons.  When we got up in the Rocky Mountains, we had several snowstorms and suffered for the want of shoes and clothes.  We reached the Salt Lake Valley October 4th on a Sunday afternoon.    People from Salt Lake met us about ten miles from Salt Lake with cake and sandwiches and apples.  That was the happiest day of the whole journey.  It was the first cake and apples I had tasted since we left our home in Sweden.  Everybody in the country that had oxen and wagons in the train would come and get them in the spring.  Brigham Young would call for a train from each county and then each bishop in each town would make a call for so many oxen and wagons.  If a man had two yoke of oxen he would let one yoke go.  If a man had two wagons he would let one go and the teamsters were called by the bishop and the captain by Brigham Young and all of them served without pay.  All the provisions were furnished for the train by the tithing department.  After staying in Salt Lake a week, we got a chance to go with a man to Mt. Pleasant so I took up the march with the cow again.  We reached Mt. Pleasant October 18th.  In the spring of 1867, I was drafted into the Utah State Militia and acted as homeguard and guarded travelers from one settlement to another as the Indians were on the warpath and killed a good many of our people and in the fall of 1867, I was called to go out to Sevier County and help the people to get away from them.  I drove a yolk of oxen and wagon belonging to Peter Miller and I had two small families, nine persons all toll, and brought them to Mt. Pleasant.  In the fall of 1869, I went out to Weber Canyon to work on the railroad, the first to come into the valley.  I worked during the winter for Thomas Stewart from Logan and the next summer I worked for Bishop West from Ogden and in November, when his contract was done I walked home carrying my bedding on my back.  I had just one hundred dollars that was the most money I had ever made  and I was very proud of the fact that I could bring home that much money.  That is the reason I walked home the one hundred and forty miles as my father and mother had no cow at this time.  I bought a cow with fifty dollars and I bought five acres of land with the brush on for the other fifty dollars.

In the fall of 1970, I hired out to the Miller Cattle Company in the southern part of Utah as cowboy and worked for them two years for thirty dollars a month.  In October 1873, I was called to go to St. George to work on the St. George Temple with twenty other boys.  We left Mt. Pleasant on the 8th of November with four teams to haul our bedding and provisions for the winter.  We had had bad weather most all the way.  It snowed every day for sixteen days so that when we got to Beaver City we had three feet of snow.  From there to Belvia the road was almost impassable.  We had to break the road all the way for a hundred miles.  All the low places in the road were drifted full so that when our teams got into a low place they would go in clear up to their sides, then we would tie a long rope to the end of the wagon tongue and all us boys would pull them out that way.  And that would happen every mile or two.  Then we fastened the rope to the end of the wagons and then we would take hold of the rope two and two and break the road for the teams and help to pull the load.  When we camped we would dig four and sometimes five feet of snow away to get to the ground so we could make a fire to cook our food---baking our bread and frying our bacon and making some coffee.  Wood was hard to get because it was covered with snow.  At night we would crowd six of us into each wagon to keep warm.  We had that way of traveling for five days.  We reached Belvia that night at twelve o'clock.  We had not stopped for dinner because we could find no wood to make a fire and it was cold and the wind blew so hard that we couldn't make a fire.  It would blow away as fast as we could make it so we crawled into a man's barn and burrowed down in the hay without any dinner or supper and we had to divide our blankets with our horses to keep them from freezing to death.  The next morning the wind was still blowing hard so that we were unable to make a fire; so we packed up and drove down five miles into Dixie where it was warm.  We stopped at Grapevine Spring, had breakfast which we needed and enjoyed as we hadn't tasted food for more than twenty-four hours.

I worked all winter blasting and quarrying rock for the temple.  The foundation was made of black lava rock and the other part is red sandstone.  In the spring of 1874, we were all released and returned home.  In November, of that year I went out to Pioche, Nevada and worked in the mines one year and left for home the first of January 1975,

The 10th of April in 1876, I married Sarah Jane Tidwell in the Endowment House at Salt Lake City by Daniel H Wells.  My wife was the daughter of James Harvey Tidwell and Elizabeth Harvey, native of West Virginia.  Her Great-grandfather, John Tidwell, was one of George Wahington's old soldiers who fought all through the Revolutionary War.  The Tidwells were natives of Indiana.  Both the Tidwells and Harveys were pioneers of Utah and the Tidwells were Pioneers of Mt. Pleasant, Utah. 

As a result of that marriage we had six children born.  William Aurthur, born first of April 1877, Jonathan Harvey, born July 30, 1879, Berkley, born July 31, 1881.  Guy Randolph, born 9th of October 1883.  Theodore, born the 3rd of November 1885.  Mary Estella, born the 8th of November 1892.

When I married, I had a yolk of oxen and a wagon and fifteen acres of land and a lot with a little one room log house with a dirt roof and a lumber floor, one door and a little window.  I had one door and window opening in the north side and the south opening dobied up.  Our furniture, all homemade, consisted of one bedstead, one table and two chairs and a little cookstove made of cast iron, that I paid thirty dollars for in Salt Lake, and I also had one cow.  That was a small beginning but it was our own.  We didn't owe anybody a cent and we didn't have to pay house rent.  We lived in that house two years and it was the two happiest years of our lives.  We think of it as our "lovenest". In 1878 I bought sixteen acres of land.  I had then 31 acres --- considered in those times to be a nice little farm.  My wife was a very saving woman so that we managed to save up a few hundred dollars every year.  In 1884, I bought two thousand head of Jonas Ericksen's sheep.  I paid two dollars and fifty cents a head.  I mortgaged my farm to the Nephi bank to pay for them and I was ten years paying that mortgage.  Grover Cleveland was elected President and the democrats were in power so that they removed the tarrif on wool so that for years I had to sell my wool for five cents a pound.  In 1896, I was elected councilman for two years; and in 1898, I was called to go on a mission to Sweden.  I left home on the fourth of November and went by rail to New York and on the 13th of November sailed on the steamship Penland, Captain Neilson from Philadelphia.  We landed at Liverpool on the 25th of November.  From there we continued by rail the next day for Grimsby.  The next day we went on board the steamship Northenden, Captain Marsden and set sail for Hamburg 400 miles away.  From there to Kil by railroad and from Kil to Kopenhagen by steamer.  We landed there December fourth, 1899.  I was set apart to go to Sweden, the birthplace of my ancestors.  I traveled over the country from east to west and from north to south.  I found many of my relatives, both on my father's side and my mother's side; and they were all fine, intelligent people.  They were farmers, builders, contractors, shoemakers, blacksmiths, carpenters, and a good many of them were pilolts.  Some were pilots over in England.

Sweden is a most beautiful country in the summertime, especially Stockholm built on five islands.  I enjoyed  my work among the people there very much because they were very kind and hospitable.  I had good health all the time I was there.  I traveled all over Denmark and Germany.  I stayed in the mission field just two years and a half.  Then I was released the 6th of April 1902.  I left Sweden the 8th by way of Kopenhagen, Esberg, Denmark; and by steamer from there to Liverpool, England.  I left Liverpool on the 13th and went on board the beautiful steamer, Commonwealth for Boston.  We had five days of stormy weather, but it was fine as I nor any of the Olson family get seasick.  I got home on the 28th of April and found my family all well.  My wife had done well at home.  I had sold my sheep and the boys had tended the farm.  Before I left home I had sold my sheep as my boys were too young to take care of them; however, when I reached home, I borrowed some more money and bought 1500 head of fine ewes.  My son, Guy, took care of them until I sold them in 1927.  I gave two dollars and fifty cents per head and I sold them for $26.00 in 1927.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

JASFO Summer Reunion ~ June 26, 2010

Annual Military Ball ~ Battery "D" ~ 222nd Field Artillery ~ Armory Hall ~ Mt. Pleasant, Utah ~ Februar 21, 1941

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Mayor of the Month ~ June, 2010 ~~~ Ferdinand Ericksen

Ferdinand Ericksen, son of Lars and  Stena, was born in Mt.  Pleasant, September 30, 1863.  He attended the district schools and took a two year course at B.Y. Academy at Provo.

He taught school for four years in Mt. Pleasant and then entered the Ann Arbor Law College, studying one year.  He was admitted to the bar of Michigan, June 5, 1890 and opened an office in Mt. Pleasant.

He was elected County Prosecuting Attorney in August, 1890 and County Collector in 1892.  In 1897 he was elected mayorl.  He was cashier of the Mt. Pleasant Bank from January 1893 to July 1895, and was a member of the board of directors.  He also had an interest in the Ericksen Meat and Grocery Company.

In 1894, he was elected Major of the National Guard of Utah, and in 1896 was appointed Judge Advocate, with the rank of Major, on Brigadier-General Willard Young's staff.  He was appointed a school trustee in 1896, to fill a vacancy, and in 1897 was elected to that position.


He was one of the influential persons to bring about the construction of the Pioneer Monument that stands in front of the Carnegie Library today.

His Speech
"Judge Ferdinand Ericksen, in his presentation speech, gave a brief history of all that had been done by the committees and the source of obtaining the necessary funds for the erection of the monument on the beautiful spot on which it stands, and thanked the ecclesiastical authorities for the privilege of locating it there without cost or consideration for an indefinite period of time. He explained in brief, the inscriptions upon the Monument, the names of the persons inscribed, he said, being representative of many nationalities, and among them were names of noted scholars.. musicians, artists, teachers, etc. Men who would, because of their skill and ability, have achieved distinction in any community. He stated in brief that this determined band of fearless and God-fear¬ing men, together with their wives, who shared their labors and who had come here under most adverse conditions; he said that the now vast rich fields with growing crops, were then covered with sage brush, and that the roads, bridges and canals were yet to be constructed, the churches and temples of learning had not then even been planned. The Opera Houses and Amusement houses were unknown. In fact, there were none of the attractions, or features of civilization to induce those pioneers to come, but on the contrary, the existing conditions at that time were such as to discourage."

"Not only were the elements to be subdued and the arid soil made to produce a livelihood, but the roving and uncivilized Indians had to be met and conquered. In conclusion he stated that it was indeed fitting that we perpetuate the names and deeds d such worthy ancestors, and that this was the underlying and controlling thought and desire in erecting the Memorial. He said that he took great pleasure in performing the duties his commission imposed, and presented the Monument to the community in behalf of all those who had in any manner aided in its construction, to honor of all the pioneers, both men and women, who settled in Mt. Pleasant, as a memorial of the esteem in which the pioneers who had made the present Mt. Pleasant possible, were held."

from Mt. Pleasant History pp 188-189; Hilda Madsen Longsdorf

He died on April 20, 1927 in Salt Lake City.

He married Clementina Marion Morrison in December of 1885, a daughter of William and Mary Margaret Farquhar Morrison. New Family Search shows them to be the parents of three children, Clementina Beatrice, William, and Clementina Marian.  His wife, Clementina died while giving birth to Clementina Marian.

He was also a partner to Henry Ericksen in the Ericksen Meat and Grocery for short time.  Henry was a brother-in-law.  Ferdinand had a law office on the second floor of the grocery business.

"In 1898, during the time Ferdinand Ericksen was mayor of the city, the city purchased the north brick schoolhouse, (the now mortuary) corner First North and First West, and in due time, after remodeling it, placing in a heating plant, vaults and cells, suitable furniture, etc.,it became an up-to-date and creditable city hall, and was the first real home the Mt. Pleasant city council had ever known.

The north Public Square was cleared of the brush and burrs, and trees and grass were planted for a city park".  from Mt. Pleasant History pp 179-180 by Hilda Madsen Longsdorf

Picture taken at the dedication of the Mt. Pleasant Pioneer Monument

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Female Relief Society, August 23, 1875

Meeting Held August 23, 1875. Singing "Come Let Us Anew, Our Journey Pursue". Prayer by Sister Peel.  Singing, "Oh Saints, Can You See the Dawn's Early Light."  The minutes of the last meeting were read and accepted.  Sister Morrison addressed the meeting and expressed her joy at meeting again with the sisters, although not many were present for the reason she supposed  of the busy times in getting in the harvest.  She then read a letter written to Miss E.R.Snow portraying the condition and labors of the Relief Society in Mt. Pleasant.  She said she felt to take an interest in everything connected with the Society.  Thought that the main cause of the ill feelings which seemed to exist some places was that people thought more about themselves than about others and if they would only remember the golden rule:, "Do unto others as you would be done by", the difficulties would be removed.  Sisters Peel and Madsen explained to the danish sisters the remarks by Sister Morrison.
Sister Peterson said that during the many years she had belonged to church, she had never for a moment entertained a doubt of its truth and she could bear a faithful testimony.
Sister Frantzen (Frandsen), Josephson and Scovil and others bore their testimony .  Meeting closed with singing "Think Not When You Gather to Zion".   Prayer by Sister Morrison
MFC Morrison, President
Hilda Dehlin, Secretary.

Female Relief Society August 9, 1875

Meeting held August 9th, 1975.  Meeting opened with singing "Come All That Love the Lord".  Prayer by Sister Morrison.  Singing, "Come Ye Saints, No Toil Nor Labor Fear".  Sister Morrison tendered Sisters her thanks for their efforts and assistance in artificial flower making.  She then read from the"Woman's Exponent a letter from Orson Spencer to his children which was very interesting.  Requested the Sisters as many as could to subscribe to the Exponent .  Sister Madsen explained the the Danish Sisters what had been said.  Sister Simpson was glad for the privelege of hearing the Sisters feelings and was thankful for the willingness of the Sisters to assist them.
Sister Jensen spoke of the importance of making artificial flowers.  Thought that if the older sisters did not care for them, the young girls did and it was right that they should have beautiful homes when they could make them with their own hands.  Sister Tidwell, Strom, Beckstead and several others bore their testimony.  The meeting closed with singing, "O, My Father, Thou That Dwellest".  Prayer by Sister Madsen

Sunday, June 13, 2010

"THE BARN" by Sue Ann Seely Croshaw

North of the residence of Ray and Mildred Seely (1981) at 430 West Main Street in Mt. Pleasant, Utah stands a large barn, the first built in that pioneer community.  It's construction is unique to the present day and stands as a reminder of the hard work and physical labor of those early settlers.

From information obtained through Ray Seely, and his sister, Elva Guyman, it was built in approximately 1862, 3 years after Mt. Pleasant was colonized.  Huge timbers were brought down from the east mountains with teams of horses and the inner structure was built by craftsman who didn't use a single nail!  All the beams were hewn and pegged so that they fit together perfectly to make a sound sturdy building. 

When the men were lifting the timbers, one man, who they called "Joe Heave", would call out "heave" so that they could lift together the heavy beams into place.  It's original construction site was on 5th west, halfway between Main Street and 1st North.  It was later moved to Main Street on the creek just east of Aunt Miranda's home, so that the animals could have water more readily.  From there it was moved to its present

Orange Seely, brother of Joseph Seely and Uncle of Ray, was the first owner and Henry Wilcox, brother of Clarissa Jane who was a Grandmother to Ray, was the builder with much help from other members of the family and the settlement.  One can picture in his mind these men all working together with the horses and the tremendous amount of toil and labor it would have taken to move the heavy beams and hew the rough
boards into the work of art that they are.

In that day, there was always the danger of Indian aggression.  Chief Black Hawk and his painted warriors terrorized the women and children.  So horses were kept saddled and ready in the barn 24 hours a day so that the minute men could ride quickly to Manti or Thistle for help.  Also Indian squaws were kept as prisoners there during times of battle.  It was also used as aplace for dancing where good times were shared by many.

When Dad (Ray Seely) move to Mt. Pleasant, from Moroni, he purchased the lot where the home now stands and the barn went with the property.  Uncle Orange had moved to Castle Dale so Dad became the rightful owner of the barn.  And no prouder owner could there have ever been!  It was his most prized possession, and he loved to tell of its history to all who would listen.  He had great respect and love for the hands who built it, and always did all he could to preserve it and maintain it.  The reverence and love that Dad had for the barn has been passed onto his family and posterity- - -a memory we all cherish.

(written in 1981)
Photograpy by Tudy Barentsen Standlee

SANPETE BARNS ~ Daughters of Utah Pioneers ~ Pioneers of Sanpete County

Perhaps no other structure has played such an important role in the lifestyle of Sanpete County folks as barns.....The generation that built the first barns here is gone and the generations that used them are fading, but life in the days when barns were used is not entirely forgotten.

Barns used to be the central place of farming where old dobbin was cared to, prize heifers and rams were kept.  Where boys learned to harness teams, fork manure, and discovered that Sunday's chicken could do without its head.

Barns were the domain of men and boys, where moments of pleasure were secretly drunk or smoked out among the smell of hay and livestock; where men gathered to talk of potatoes and presidents and sometimes non essential things.  The barn, before the automobile, was the parking place for the family surrey and for milking old Bossie; where boys gathered to fight dragons and formed bonds with blood from a finger. 

During the heyday of barns, a family's standing in the community was sometimes measured in relation to the quality and size of their barns.  A large one easily could make up for those with a questionable or shady background and likewise a small barn could mean a family lacked  discipline, was inclined to laziness, and perhaps even slept too much.  In short, barns wre a status symbol much as the automobile and the house later became. 

Girls and women were allowed to come into barns occasionally, and mostly to gather eggs, carry milk to the house, or see a new calf or lamb.  It was understood, however, the barn was the domain of men and boys.

Barns in Sanpete County were yesterday's status symboland would sometimes depict the nationality of the owner.  Early non-Scandinavian builders built by nailing planks horizontally while settlers with a Scandinavian background attached planks vertically.

The day of the noble barn has given way to progress, efficiency with food outlets, packaged meats, and gallon plastic containers.
Genealogy Quote

"In all of us there is a hunger, marrow-deep, to know our heritage - to know who we are and where we have come from."

~Alex Haley

L.D.S. Temple

L.D.S. Temple
Manti Temple