Sunday, March 31, 2013

Oh, What To Do With All Those Boiled Eggs?

Happy Easter to All   from David & Kathryn Gunderson

As I think back over all of the Easters in my life, I think the last Easter I celebrated in Japan during my mission was one of the most memorable. In Japanese, Easter is called the Fukkatsu Sai.  In English, that translates to the Celebration of the Resurrection, a much more fitting name than Easter, the name of an ancient European pagan fertility festival.
On that last Easter in Japan, I was assigned to be the President of a small branch of the LDS Church in the beautiful city of Kofu, at the foot of Mt. Fuji

My companion and I decided to invite several of the members[1], who had been especially helpful to us, to an Easter dinner.  Since we were living on tight budgets, the choice of food was important. Beef, chicken, pork and turkey were simply out of the question. However, the local butcher suggested that we might consider horsemeat, or perhaps as a last resort, lamb.
To us, lamb seemed to be the first and best choice, but our Japanese friends were not so sure.  They all said that Lamb was “Kusai”. (In English: smelly or bad tasting.) My companion and I immediately mounted a campaign to try to convince them to change their minds about lamb. We asked them if they had ever tasted lamb and they all admitted that they had not, We pointed out that Jesus had probably eaten lamb as much or more than any other meat and since Jesus himself was the Pascal Lamb on that last Passover before the beginning of the Christian Era, didn’t they think they should at least try it. Well that did it. They all agreed that since it was “Fukkastsu Sai”, they would give lamb a try.
Easter morning dawned bright and beautiful that year. In church services, we sang our favorite Easter hymns, the talks all centered on Jesus’ sacrifice and the blessing of everlasting life that Christians believe His sacrifice guarantee to us all.  We were all happy and felt greatly uplifted by the spirit of the day.
That afternoon, our small group gathered for the planned Easter dinner. It consisted of roast lamb (we roasted it in our stovetop oven and I thought it turned out great), potatoes, rice, lamb gravy, vegetables, fruit, and a Japanese cake (Kasutera cake, a sort of sponge cake). All seemed to go well. As the members were departing for their homes, I made the mistake of asking one of the older Sisters how she had liked the lamb. She turned to me and, with uncharacteristic frankness, said “well it was alright I guess, but I still think it was “kusai””.

I remember other great Easters in my life. Easters in Moab, Utah with my cousins and the Easter egg hunts in the red rocks and sand of Arches National Monument. I still wonder what happened to the eggs we could never seem to find.

I also remember Easters in New Jersey with my good friends the Hohmanns. I specially remember the giant chocolate Easter bunnies I always gave to my godson Matt and “Omah’s” wonderful red cabbage. It was always so delicious. After dinner, we often went to New York City to attend the memorable Easter Vesper services at River Side Church. They often performed the great composition “On the way to Emmaus” which recounts Jesus appearance to two disciples who were returning to their homes in the small village of Emmaus, just after the crucifixion (Luke 24:13).   .

I also remember the early morning Easter services Roger Stolen (a Lutheran) and I attended at  Trinity Episcopal Church in Asbury Park New Jersey (neutral ground to both Roger and I)  to hear our mutual friend Kent Olson (a Mormon) accompany the Trinity Church choir for their Easter Services.
Above all, Easter is the time Christians reaffirm their belief in the sacrifice that Jesus made to make it possible for all of us to go “back home”.  We hope that each of you will feel the hope, joy and renewal of life that is celebrated in this great and happy festival.

A Victorian Easter Card


[1] The families of most of our members did not share their Christian faith, so church meetings & activities had to serve many of the needs that are normally served by our families, especially for Christmas and Easter.


Saturday, March 30, 2013

Que and Eva Seely ~ Oh the Memories That Come Flooding Back ~ Posted with permission of Tonga Seely Titcomb, their daughter

Photo: Hard working Que...looks like he just changed the oil on the old family car.

Hard working Que...looks like he just changed the oil on the old family car.

Photo: Eva Tolman, September 1938, this is in Bountiful before she knew there was turkeys in Sanpete County...

Eva Tolman, September 1938, this is in Bountiful before she knew there was turkeys in Sanpete County...

Sunday, March 24, 2013

City Begins by Indian Request ~ by Fern M. Jacobs

In the beginning, there was a beautiful little valley tucked between high mountains of the Wasatch Range.  The Indians and wild animals  had been its only occupants.  Several sparkling mountain streams flowed down the face of the mountains giving life to the land it touched.  Then came the white men and civilization as it is called.

It is impossible to separate the migration from almost every nation of Europe, from the Latter-day Saint Church......especially in the beginning.  They were attempting to escape the persecution of men not believing in the "inalienable right" to worship as they pleased given in the first documents written up by the founding fathers of this new nation.  So it was decided to come west to a spot no one else would want in the dessert surroundings of the great salt sea.

So as the migration continued, there were many who found land and built homes in the Salt Lake and Cache valleys.  After Chief Walker, Chief Sowiette and a band of Ute Indians went to Salt Lake to urge President Young to send "pale faces" south to this Sanpitch Valley to teach the Indians how to build their houses and till the soil, a group of men journeyed down into this valley and were entertained by the Indian tribe.  It was decided that Manti be the first settlement.  They came on November 22, 1849, about 43 families making shelters in dug-outs, wagon boxes, or whatever could be found.  After a terrible winter and infestation of rattle snakes in the spring, they began the arduous task of clearing land, planting crops and building homes.

Among the group who first settled Manti were two men, Madison D. Hambleton, Gardner Potter and their families.  These two men, in 1851, came north to Pleasant Creek Canyon and found desirable timber to be cut.  So they brought out timber, cut shingles and furnished lumber for building the first homes in Allred Settlement ( later called Spring Town ).

In the spring of 1852, under the direction of these two men, a settlement was made on Pleasant Creek about a mile west of where the town of Mt. Pleasant is not situated.  About six families made their way here, built homes and began to till up the soil on the south of the little settlement.  There was plenty pastureland as well as the creek and the sawmill which he and Potter built.

It has been found through research and the stories of a great-granddaughter of Madison Hambleton now living in Mt. Pleasant, that Mr. Hambleton was born Nov. 2, 1811 in Erie, New York, and died July 1901 in Nephi.  He and his family, consisting of a wife and two daughters, had been in Nauvoo when the expulsion took place and came west to Salt Lake and lived there in Cottonwood for a time before coming to Manti with the first group.

Their sawmill was located in Pleasant Creek Canyon just west of the present site of our power plant and supplied lumber for much of the building in the valley.  These two men saw the great possibilities of what was to become one of the big enterprises of the community later on.  At one time, many sawmills dotted our mountains and gave employment to many men with their teams and wagons.

The site was chosen near the slaughter house used for many years by Erickson Meat Co.  This to many seems the most logical place, from the scant information give of our early history.  If anyone knows more about this matter, we would greatly appreciate additional data.  Around this spot are many trees  .... not necessarily the local type.  One can recognize Russian Olive, ash, box elder and the more common poplar, willow and oak.  This suggests these trees having been planted for shade trees.  Also the site was on the bend of Pleasant Creek as it turns north to join Sanpitch River.

Early in July, 1853, the Ute Indians went on the war path because of some killings  the Indians thought unjust.  Chief Walker had changed his attitude toward the whites shortly after they had arrived in the Manti Valley and had been stealing cattle.  Chief Sowiette tried and was successful in subduing Chief Walker many times on behalf of the white men.  But this time the Indians got out of hand so to speak, and word was passed down through the state to expect trouble.  A posse was dispatched from Provo on July 23, 1853 and  after a bloody fight at Hambleton, the posse assisted the settlers to get to Spring Town.  As they left, they turned to watch the flames from Indian torches lay to ruin their little settlement and the sawmill.  Some of the men later returned to harvest what they could salvage of their crops.

The stay at Spring Town (or the Allred Settlement) was brief as they also had been threatened.  As a result, all was moved to Manti.  Here 765 men, women and children lived that winter.

In 1857, as Johnston's Army threatened the "peace to destroy,"  President Brigham Young urged the people to move farther south.  Thus, many more found their way to our little valley of the Sanpitch.  Also, there was a great migration about this time from the Scandinavian countries of LDS converts.  Many came to Ephraim, Manti and Sanpete.  By February of 1859 permission had been granted by President Young to resume a settlement on Pleasant Creek while urging extreme precaution to be taken and a fort built immediately to protect the people in case of another fierce Indian attack.  That spring, a larger group numbering about 20 families  lead by James R. Ivie, Joseph Clement and Isaac Allred left Manti.  The men had come up previous to this time to cut cedar posts and see the lay of the land.

The question was arisen as to why Madison Hambleton's name was not on the list of those who came in the second group. The answer has been found  through research that he and his son-in-law, Abraham Bosworth, had contracted to deliver mail from Manti to Nephi and up to Salt Lake once every week.  So he moved to Nephi and lived there the remainder of his life.  Just another side issue , Abraham Boswell had come over from Nephi  to purchase lumber from the Hambleton-Potter Sawmill and had met and fallen in love with Gerusha Hambleton.  They married in 1853 and lived in Hambleton Settlement until they were driven out with the rest.

As was suggested, a fort was one of the first considerations and was duely built of stone with native rock and mud mortar.  It was 26 rods square, with the walls 12 feet high ~~~ four feet at the bottom and graduated to two feet at the top with port holes to fire at the Indians if need be.  On the inside the fort walls were used as one wall for houses built about 18 feet square.  There were two large gates on the north and south with smaller ones on the east and west, leaving space for Pleasant Creek to flow from east to west through the fort to supply water for them.  This fort was located on the intersection of what is now Main and State Streets;  East about a block, north to about first north, west 40 rods, and south the beginning.

Many lived in the fort for a time until a dugout or houses could be built.  Then they would move out and others would come and take residency in the Fort until their abodes were ready.  Many families came and the town grew rapidly.  Soon there were about 800 inhabitants with about 1200 acres of ground under cultivation.  There was great rejoicing as the fort was completed in July 1859.  When the drums would beat, it was a signal for all to run for the fort as the Indians were coming.

In the center of the fort was built the first community building.  It was used as the very first school house with A.B. Strickland and Mrs. Oscar Winters as teachers.  It also served as meeting house, theater, dance hall and for church services.

There were difficult times but everyone had to be united in the effort of self protection, preservation from cold, hunger and lack of means.  It was a time of bartering....not much money changed hands.  Each one in turn would trade what he had, could raise or could make for something he needed, that someone else could furnish.  The United Order was begun but did not survive long, although in one sense of the word, the exchanging of services, handmade products and food was the basis for their survival.

There was much to do to get everything started.  City lots and farming land were divided and the settlers drew their land by number.  Irrigation ditches and canals had to be dug and rights established which stand to this present time.  We can stand in awe and amazement at the system organized with little or no understanding of the principles of irrigation.

Homes had to be built, trees, gardens and grain planted after the arduous task of clearing the high sage brush and rocks from the land.  Women set up looms and spinning wheels in their homes to make clothes from scratch; that is they would shear the sheep, wash and card the wool, spin and dye it, weave it and then cut and sew it by hand to make wearing apparel for their families as well as knitting stockings and sweaters.

I wonder in this day and age just how many of us would survive long if we had to grow or produce all we had to eat.  It gives us a deeper appreciation of our progenitors the work and diligence they demonstrated.

William S. Seely was appointed the first bishop which also entailed being the mayor and judge, but the town prospered.

They couldn't have all work and no play.  Not long after the fort was completed, there were theater performances staged with wagon covers used as curtains.  There were dances, weddings to celebrate, quiltings and celebrations to liven things up.

Five languages were spoken in Mt. Pleasant, so there was much confusion in understanding each other, but each group studied the gospel in his own tongue and was united in one cause .....their religion.

The first school established outside the fort was "Aunty Hyde's" school, located about one half a block west of the present high school.  She would call "to books ... to books" to begin the day in lieu of a bell.

The town was incorporated on February 20, 1868.

Many businesses needed to be established and all followed in the course as the needs arose such as a printing press, blacksmith shop, shoe makers, dentist shops, doctors' offices, hotels, post offices, banks, leather tanneries, adobe kilns for making bricks, sawmills and flour mills. Space will not permit a detailed outline of each of these projects and names of those responsible given credit.  I hesitate mentioning names for fear of deleting some more important than others.  All assisted each in his own way to make our town a better, more desirable place to live.

President Young sent word for a brass band to be established.  John Hasler, a musician from Switzerland brought instruments from his native land and established the first brass band.  For playing in this band each man was given a ten acre field in the northwest part of the community fields.  It is even yet referred to as the "brass band field".

The different auxiliaries of the church were organized and eventually the town was divided into wards and churches were built.  Dr. McMillian came and established Wasatch Academy in the year 1875.  A school house was built and called the "Simpson School" as Hans Y. Simpson had contributed generously to its being built.  It was located on 200 West and about where the Wasatch Academy tennis court now stands.

In 1889 the Deseret Telegraph branch line was completed to Mt. Pleasant.  1872 found the Indians and white men signing the Black Hawk War peace treaty in Bishop Wm. S. Seely's home which is now our Pioneer Museum on State Street.

The D&RG Railroad started its run from Salt Lake to Mt. Pleasant in the year 1890 as well as the telephone system from Fairview to Mt. Pleasant the following year.  Thus distances and communication brought the world closer to our fair, becoming city.

Mt. Pleasant erected a three story brick school house in the year 1898.  Its bell tolled curfew at nine o'clock each night and again in the morning, people could set their clock by the 8 o'clock bell ringing loud and clear with precise regularity.  The school was to have been named Hambleton in honor of Mt. Pleasant's first leader, but somehow it was changed to Hamilton.

The North Sanpete High School was completed in 1912.  This gave students a chance to continue their education beyond elementary school.  Wasatch Academy now included instruction for children kindergaarten through 12th grade as well.

Mt. Pleasant weathered three major floods in 1893, 1918, and 1946.  All went roaring down through the main section of town distributing mud, rocks and debris on each side of Pleasant Creek, through houses, stores and streets.  In 1918 one life was lost.  A flood dam has now been built to catch the quick run-off so we are hoping the problem is solved permanently.

For many years the sheep industry was the main way of making a living here.  First came the more common variety of sheep which would be taken to the west desert in the winter, returning in the spring to be traded to the mountain tops to graze on the high green grass.  Later, the Ramblette was brought from Russia.  This breed had long wool fibers and were much sought after.

In 1872 Mt. Pleasant boasted of a population of 3000 but times change and many sons and daughters reluctantly left home to make more lucrative living elsewhere.  Lately, many are moving back and the town population is increasing.  Several land development companies are selling lots for homes.  Many people have found out clean clear air, our desirable climate, cool mountain setting very desirable.  As you can tell, I for one, love our fair little city.

Fern acknowledges the book of  "Mt. Pleasant", compiled by Hilda Madsen Longsdorf; "These Our Fathers", compiled by Florence Bagnall and the family of Madison D. Hambleton, Mrs. Thomas Milburn a great granddaughter of Hambleton and "History of Sanpete and Emery Counties".  as her sources for her excellent report.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Synopsis of Celebration held March 18, 1926

This Synopsis was read at the thirty sixth Annual Celebration of the
 Mt. Pleasant Pioneer Historical Association.
Read by Hilda Madsen Longsdorf

Exercises held in Mt. Pleasant North Ward Chapel
James Larsen presided.
Guests of Honor seated on the stand:

Oldest Lady:  Mrs Mary Willcox aged 95 years 9 months (a pioneer of Utah 1847, a pioneer of Hambleton in 1852, and Mt. Pleasant in 1860)

Oldest Man:  Rudolph N. Bennett age 83 years and 5 months (a pioneer of 1859 the only man still living whose name is on the Pioneer Monument.

The program:

Selection: North Sanpete High School Band led by Henry Terry
Prayer:  R. N. Bennett (a beautiful impressive prayer)
Vocal Solo with orchestra accompaniment:  "Calm is the Night" by Wilma Hafen
Talk:  James Monsen "Caring for our relics" (made in the Danish language and interpreted by C. W. Sorensen.

He extended thanks of the Association to J.H. Stansfield, a Norman, Amelia Jensen and Hilda Longsdorf for the part played by them in reconstructing the Fort Wall in miniature for the Association.

A paper prepared by Mrs Melvina Crane "Fun in the Good Old Days" was read by her.

A paper "Memories of Freighting Days" was read by N.S. Nielson.

Address:  Judge Ferdinand Ericksen of Salt Lake City.  Judge Ericksen was a former member of the Board of Directors and the Treasurer during construction of the Pioneer Monument.  He also read a sketch of schools as he knew them to 1890.

Vocal Solo:  Floyd Young of Fairview with piano accompaniment by Ernest Staker

Talks:  Dr. Samuel H. Allen and Amasa Aldrich both former residents; now of Salt Lake.  The spoke reminiscently of school days, dance days, and wash days, etc. in Mt. Pleasant.  (Dr. Allen died the following September)

Overture:  North Sanpete High School Orchestra 

Benediction:  Pres. S. M. Nielsen of North Sanpete Stake

The meeting adjourned to Mt. Pleasant Carnegie Library where relics were displayed and old-time refreshments served.

The days activities were concluded by a dance in the Hansen Armory Hall where the receipts of the dance were $77.50, expenses were $71.70 with cookies donated by member of the committee.

Members who had passed to the beyond during the year 1925-26:
Mr. Hazzard Willcox
Mr. Washington Averett
Mrs. Hannah Anderson
Mr. John Knudson
Mrs Isaac Phipps Smith
Mr. William H. Seely
Mrs Peter Micklesen
Mrs. Dorothy Bramstead Swensen

During 1926 Mrs Annie Peel Candland, a board member died and James Borg, a board member removed to Salt Lake City.

signed:  Hilda M. Longsdorf, Secretary

Monday, March 18, 2013

Thirty sixth Annual Celebration of the Mt. Pleasant Pioneer Historical Association

Hilda Madsen Longsdorf served for over 40 years as the Secretary
of the Mt. Pleasant Pioneer Historical Association. 
She finished writing "Mt. Pleasant History" in 1939
at the age of 62.
And she passed away at age 69.
The following minutes were taken by her of the 
Thirty sixth Annual Celebration of the
Mt. Pleasant Pioneer Historical Association just 
a year before she passed away.

Minutes of the thirty sixth annual celebration of the Mt. Pleasant Pioneer Historical Association held March 3, 1945; honoring the 87th anniversary of the founding of the City.

In honor of the occasion, Mayor John  Gunderson had proclaimed a holiday and the Main Street of the city was fittingly decorated with the National Colors.  The Hambleton (yes she said Hambleton) School Band ; as has been customary for a number of years with Marsden Allred as director rendered music in the open air at the South Ward LDS Chapel and created a holiday spirit as the vast crowd assembled for the program at 2:00 p.m..

At the entrance to the chapel the reception committee of ladies were in pioneer costume and made all welcome.

Pres. James Monsen presided at the meeting and made a speech of welcome.
The theme "Memories Thru The Years" was carried out through the program.

A men's quartet consisting of Ray Jorgensen, Harold Young, Mack Hafen and Grant Johansen rendered the song "Memories".

The invocation was given by Que Seely.

Mrs Hilda Madsen Longsorf, secretary of the Association read the minutes of the celebration a year ago, March 4, 1944.  Also, a synopsis of the minutes of 20 years ago, conducted a roll call and a tribute to members who have died in the past year.

A ladies quartet, Lizetta Beck, Lydia Hansen, Pauline Seely and Matilda Hafen sang a Swiss song.

The Address of the day was given by Pres. George Albert Smith of the Council of the Twelve.  We were highly honored to have Prres. Smith with us.  He complimented the Association for carrying on this type of activity and said it was a beautiful sight to see this large audience in this beautiful chapel, paying tribute to our founding fathers and mothers.  He recalled early visits to Mt. Pleasant as a salesman.

He narrated a number of pioneer stories.  In one he showed the traits of the Indian in remembering the acts of friendship and justice by white men.  Pres. Smith commended the Association to permanent form some of our history in the book "Mt. Pleasant", which he commended to all.

A violin solo was given by Paul Cornaby of the Wasatch Academy.

Mrs. Rhoda Drage led in singing a number of songs, Mrs Thomas Jensen furnishing accompaniment on an accordian. Mrs. Jensen also sang a solo with self accompaniment.

The benediction was given by Grant Johansen.

Following the benediction the congregation moved to the recreation hall where a delightful program of humorous skits and music prepared under the direction of Mrs. Louise F. Christensen.  Lawrence Ericksen acted as Master of Ceremonies with a black face.

Minstrel numbers:  Leland Shepherd, Lawrence Ericksen

Ladies Trio:  Mrs. Donna Jean Johansen, Miss Mary Hafen, Mrs. Iris Hafen

Barbershop Quartet:  Ray Jorgensen, Harold Young, Mack Hafen, Grant Johansen

Old time quadrille:  Mr. and Mrs. John Winkleman, Mr. and Mrs. Bertie A Smith, Mr. and Mrs. Willis Draper, Mr. and Mrs. Hyrum Merz.

Cowboy Songs and Yodeling:  Vance Brothers of Milburn

Swiss Quartet:  Lizetta Beck, Lydia Hansen, Pauline Seely and Matilda Hafen

Patient Medicine Stunt:  Lawrence Ericksen, Leland Shepherd

Acrobatic stunts:  Reba Stewart and   ........Jensen of Fairview

Duet:  Lucille Nelson and Lola Drage.

Bessie With A Bustle:  Barbara Peel, Ben Staker and O.V. Anderson.

A reception for all pioneers and out of town visitors followed the program where refreshments were served.  Old acquaintances renewed and a general good time enjoyed by all.

A dance in the evening in the Armory  Hall concluded the day's activities.  The crowd attending was enormous.  And a good time was had by all.  Many old time costumes  were in evidence,  One crowd came dressed in Civil War Military uniforms and other old-time military uniforms that provoked very much amusement and some sympathy for the men who wore the big artificial beards so much in evidence.

Since our 1945 (should be 1944) celebration these members have answered the summons to explore the regions of the Great Beyond:

Pioneers of 1859:  Peter C. Meiling
                             Mrs. Ephraim Hansen
                             William H. C. Morrison
                              Mrs. Sarah J. Borg  (Mrs. Borg is one born the first year in Mt. Pleasant and was               privileged to unveil the Pioneer Monument at its dedication in 1909.

Those having reached the age of 80 or more:     Mrs Lydia T Winters
                                                                        Charles Mills
                                                                        Mrs. Annie Rolfsen (Rolphsen)

Remaining with us of those who were here in 1859 are now but three:
                                                                        Mrs. Ann Nelson (who recently celebrated her 90th birthday)
                                                                                     Mr. Brigham Porter (88 years of age)
                                                                                     Mr. Isiah Cox of St. George  (born in Mt. Pleasant in 1859)
                                                                                     Mr. Sylvester Barton (born in 1860)

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Happy St. Patrick’s Day to One and All ~ David R. Gunderson

Happy St. Patrick’s Day to One and All

My first encounter with the “wearing of the green” was on the 17th of March in my kindergarten year and it was not a pleasant one. My mom had gotten me all ready for school that morning but had neglected to fortify me with something green. It seams that St. Patrick ’s Day is recognized by the Catholic church and some of the more liturgical Protestant churches like the Episcopals and the Lutherans. However, it is not a sacred day for most of the non-liturgical protestant churches like the Presbyterians and more to the point the Mormons.When I entered the classroom that day, children rushed at me from every direction pinching me as hard as they could. I was caught completely of guard and was getting ready to fight the attacking hoard off when the teacher intervened, saved me and made a green shamrock for me to wear for protection for the rest of the day.

My next great memory of St. Patrick’s Day was when I was interviewing with Bell Labs. I had a free day in Manhattan and it was on Saturday March 17. My associates and I decided to go to the famous parade. I recall platoon after platoon of ethnically Irish mounted police riding by. In addition band after band from the local Catholic high schools marched by. I also recall that, there were policeman stationed at about 10 foot intervals all along 5th Avenue. One of my friends remarked that the parade watchers were outnumbered by the police.

.Macys & Gimbals had changed their name to O’Macys & O’Gimbals, some people had dressed up like Leprechauns, every bar advertised that it had green beer and nearly everyone had a badge that read “Kiss Me I’m Irish”. The flower shops in the subway stations were even selling little cups of live shamrocks. (I was quite surprised to see that shamrocks were small like clover. I had imagined them to be about 2 inches wide and about 2½ inches tall, like the one my kindergarten teacher had made for me). In any case, everyone assured me that on St. Patrick ’s Day, everyone is Irish.

The true story of St. Patrick is a bit vague but it seams that he was born near the west coast of Briton, across from the Isle 
of Mann, in the AD 380s. This was just as the Roman Empire was collapsing.
At about the age of 16 he was kidnapped by Irish raiders and sold into slavery. He remained as a slave for 6 years and then escaped. One account said that he felt that he had committed some sort of sin in his youth and that the slavery was just punishment.

His father and grandfather were Christian clerics and after his escape, he decided to become a priest and carry the Christian gospel to Ireland. After several years of study he was ordained a bishop and returned to Ireland. One of the great stories of his ministry is how he used the tiny shamrock to explain the Trinity.
March 17, 461 AD is accepted as the date of his death. His life was about 75 years in length. Since his birth date is unknown, his death date is used to commemorate his great work.
So Erin Go Bragh (Ireland for ever) to everyone.

David R. Gunderson

Friday, March 15, 2013

Mt. Pleasant As Seen From the Air. ~ Betty Gunderson Woodbury

Members of the Woodbury Family shot these photos of Mt. Pleasant recently
Betty Gunderson Woodbury submitted them to our Blog.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Letter to the Editor of the Pyramid ~ by Lee R. Christensen

El Monte. 
 The Oak is about where we stood to watch the climb

The Pyramid
90 W. Main
Mt. Pleasant, UT

January 20, 1993

Dear Editor:

February 24 is the 47th anniversary of the El Monte Oak Park Rocky Mountain climb. As
mountain climbs go, it was certainly not comparable to the Everest climb, nor even Mt.
Timpanogas. But for the climbers and the spectators from Mt. Pleasant’s Battery A, 204
Field Artillery, it was an afternoon’s respite from the tedious Army life at isolated El Monte
Oak Park in eastern San Diego County.

I don’t recall who issued the challenge. It was probably Sgt. Wilbur Rasmussen wondering
out loud how long it would take someone to climb Rocky Mountain. And then, Cpl. Shirley
Madsen responding that he would climb it in under two hours. Others joined in with yeas
and nays. After a week or two of contention, sides chosen, bets made, Shirley and his partner
Pfc. Jay Larson scheduled their climb.

With the men of the Battery at their chosen viewing stations, all binoculars and B.C.
scopes uncased, Shirley and Jay took off. They had about a quarter of a mile to go before
they started the serious climb. This they covered at a fast walk - a warm up. Then, up the
mountain they climbed, rock by rock, steep slope by steep slope. They moved too slow for
the “can dos” and too fast for the “can’t dos.” Three quarters up the mountain they disappeared
onto the back side. The tension built. Just as some of the can’t dos were asking
for their money, they reappeared. First it was Jay, and then Shirley on the summit. Total
elapsed time was one hour and 17 minutes .

Now, 47 years after the event, I’ve heard some of the observers state the climbing time as
35-40 minutes. But my notes, recorded 15 minutes after the event, clearly read: one hour
17 minutes. Still well under two hours.

This climb confirmed an old Utah truism - it is foolhardy to doubt the climbing ability of a
North Sanpete sheepherder.

Lee Christensen


                                 S SG Jay R. Larsen 
                                              ID: 20925444 
                                                            Branch of Service: U.S. Army 
                                                             Hometown: Sanpete County, UT
                                                             Status: KIA

Monday, March 11, 2013



Dorothy Jacobs Buchanan
 Saga of the Sanpitch  ~ 1985
Professional Division
Honorable Mention Anecdote

Shortly after the turn of the century, a number of Mt. Pleasant young women organized a club called
the Betsy Ross Girls, better know as the B.R.G.s. Their objective was to do needlework, as the name implied,,  But I am sure that a great deal of sprightly conversation accompanied their stitching, for those young ladies were attractive, personable, and well informed.

They had a custom that each one presented a silver demi-tasse spoon to a member when she became
engaged to be married. The name of the donor was engraved in the bowl of the spoon. As my mother was one of the first to be married, she received several of those precious spoons. I loved to polish them and read each name Often, mother would relate information about those friends and some of their activities in the B.R.G.s.

Subsequently, I married and had a home and family in Richfield. Many years later, I met a charming
lady from Marysvale named Mrs. Etta Bertelsen. In the course of our discussion, she told me that her mother, Marie Syndergaard Long, was raised in Mt. Pleasant. I recognized her name as a good friend of my mother's and one of the B.R.G. girls. This discovery pleased us both.

I then told Mrs. Bertelsen that I had a silver spoon with her mother's name, "Marie," engraved in
the bowl. I could hardly wait to witness her happiness when I took it to her.

The next time we met, Mrs. Bertelsen opened the conversation by saying, "And NOW, I have a silver
spoon for YOU!" She handed me a spoon engraved with my mother's name, "Bertie." We were two delighted people — grateful that we were able, after those many years, to make that rewarding silver spoon exchange.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Let's Play "Name That Photo" ~ Photo sent in by Tonga Seely Titcomb

This photo looks to me like it was taken at the Mount Pleasant South Ward Church.  I recognize a few faces, but would like you to fill in your guesses or knowledge as well.  Thank You Tonga for sharing !!!

Saturday, March 9, 2013


Pearle M. Olsen
Salt Lake City, Utah
Second Place Essay ~ Saga of the Sanpitch
Professional Division

Some people in Mt. Pleasant or in Sanpete County, Utah, may be unaware of the fact that for a period of
over twenty years there was a Z.C.M.I. branch store in Mt. Pleasant, and that it occupied three different
locations during those years.

I sometimes heard my father speak of the old store known by that name, and I became interested in its
history as I learned that the large red brick building I knew to be the Union Store had once housed the early
Z.C.M.I. in the years of my father‘s youth.18

The Union Store in Mt. Pleasant stood on the present site of the Doughboy monument and the Armory
Hall on Main and State streets. It faced south, and I found out that it was the first building erected in town that required a break in the old pioneer fort wall. Some rocks had to be removed from the southwest corner of the big wall in preparation for it.

I had also heard reference to a small store in early days that was called Z.C.M.I. and was on south State
street. Still I heard of another location where a store was known by the same name. That building I
remembered, but I knew it as a blacksmith shop on the corner of Main and state streets (southwest corner).
My interest was challenged by the various locations known as the early day sites of the store, and
research led me to several references recorded by Andrew Madsen, a grand uncle of mine. His daughter
compiled his information on early day Mt. Pleasant, and a book was sponsored by the Pioneer Historical
Association of that town.

The book was sold for many years by the Association, but has been out of print for years as it was a
limited edition. With this in mind I pass information along to share with many who have not had the privilege
of reading and knowing about that old branch Z.C.M.I.

The Mt. Pleasant store was organized in 1870 after the pattern of the store that had been established the
previous year in Salt Lake City, and named the Zion‘s Co-operative Mercantile Institution. The local company was begun with seven hundred dollars worth of stock subscribed by various individuals, among who were: W.S. Seely, P.M. Peel, Andrew Madsen, N.P. Madsen, Jacob Christensen, Niels Widergren Anderson, Peter Monsen, Hans Poulsen, J.W. Seely, Hans Y. Simpson, Mortin Rasmussen, and W.S. Seely was chosen as the first manager and superintendent. Andrew Madsen and C.N. Lund served later as superintendents. I was intrigued by the fact that my grandfather, Niels Peter Madsen, had been one of the first and principal investors.

Business began in one small room of a log building on the east side of State Street at Third South.
Anthon H. Lund was a clerk there for a short time. Then the company built a larger, new log building on the
southwest corner of the Main and State Street intersection where the drug store now stands. The logs of that
new store were chinked with mud and the room was plastered with mud. Outside, above the door a large sign read: ―Z.C.M.I.

Charles Hampshire and Olaf Sorensen were the clerks. One spoke English and the other Danish, so
customers were understood and helped no matter which language they spoke. The store carried a variety of
merchandise and developed a fine trade.

All trading was done at that time by written order or printed due bills for which people traded their
produce. The produce was then freighted to Pioche, Nevada, and other mining towns where cash was received for it. Long trips were made with mule or horse teams, and the shorter trips with ox teams. It was seldom that a silver dollar was seen in Mt. Pleasant in those days, and the produce was as valuable as money would have been.

By 1878, it was found that even the mud-plastered building was very inadequate for the volume of
business being done. So a two-story red brick building was planned and built on the corner opposite from the one chinked with mud. It later became the Wilson blacksmith ship that I recall.
The brick used in the new store was made at a brick yard west of town, and was mixed with horse
power. After the adobes were formed they were covered with burlap and sand until thoroughly dry, then packed and burned for a week or two. Cedar wood from the Cedar Hills was used for burning.
A ladder was placed and men formed a bucket brigade that carried water up the ladder where it was
poured over the kiln until the bricks were saturated. Any brick with lime in it would burst and be discarded.
The good bricks were tested again by laying them in running water for several days.

Nothing but the first class bricks and other materials were used in building the new store. The huge
timbers were hewn with a broad axe, and smoothed with drawing knives. A large basement furnished ample
room for the storing of commodities on hand, and at its peak the store carried a twelve thousand dollar stock.19

An outside stairway along the east side of the store led to a theatre and dance hall in the second story
that served as an up-to-date amusement center accommodating larger crowds than the previously used Social Hall on the church square.

When the term of incorporation of Mt. Pleasant Z.C.M.I. expired, the stockholders decided to
incorporate under the name of Equitable Co-op, and sometimes it was referred to as the Co-op Store. Later the name was changed to Union Store and was managed by Andrew Madsen for many years. The building was finally razed to provide a site for the Armory Hall and Doughboy monument.

Personal knowledge of the author.
Gleanings from the book, Mt. Pleasant, compiled by Hilda Madsen Longsdorf in 1939.
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