GEORGE WILLIAM DAY HISTORY
This history was written by his daughter, Olea Day Cox in 1956. Material was gathered from,
histories, old letters, neighbors and friends who remember him as a youngster, as well as when he was
older and as I new him as a Father.
He was born in Mt. Pleasant Utah, Sept. 7, 1865 to Abraham and Charlotte Melland Day.
His father was born Sept. 24, 1817 near Winham, Windham Co. Vermont. His mother in Killamarsh
Derbyshire England 25, Dec. 1832. Abraham had joined the L.D.S. Church was married and on his way to Utah when Charlotte, a young girl, was put in his company to cross the Plains. He was called to serve in the Mormon Battalion so had to leave his family. After it was over he went back and for two years worked hard to get wagons, oxen, provisions, etc, to finish his trip to Utah.
After they reached Salt Lake he took Charlotte for his second Wife. The family lived here for
many years, and then they were called to go to Springville. Charlottes cabin was built in Hobble Creek Canyon. She had several children at this time. Because of Indian troubles Abraham took this family and moved to Mt. Pleasant, leaving his first wife and her family there, this was in 1860. Here six more children were born. George was the ninth child born in the family.
Their pioneer life was not an easy one. Four children died young, living in dugouts and in the
Fort for years. When George was born they had a two room cabin built by his father on the corner
block now where the Mt. Pleasant swimming pool is. The children were very poorly clad, went bare
footed in the summer, attended a ward school, but had very few books. George being one of the
younger ones had a chance for a better education.
He was only seven years old when his Mother died in 1872. He had an older sister who was
married, Dora Day Johnson, who did a lot for the younger children who were left. George worked with his father on the farm and in the mountains, building roads, cutting timber, hauling the lumber.
There is a canyon now east of Mt. Pleasant by the name of Days Canyon.
He was baptized a member of the L.D.S. Church Sept. 9, 1881. He was 16 years old at the time.
Have often wondered why Grandpa Day a convert to the Church back in Vermont did not have it done when he was eight. I think he was more a colonizer than a church man: was a very good surveyor, had several saw mill, etc. He could do most anything when it came to pioneering. His son George (my father) did farming, was a very good carpenter. He built two homes, his first one on his father’s lot, this he sold and built one on North State Street in Mt. Pleasant. Here is where I (Olea) was born.
Elizabeth Ellis Staker was a neighbor girl. They played together, went to school together, only
six months difference in their ages, fell in love and were married in the Logan Temple, 17 Nov. 1886.
He held the Priesthood of an Elder and was an officer in the Elders Quorum.
He loved to play baseball, was the catcher on the team. He played a long time after they were
married. I still have a picture of the team He hunted wild game, especially deer. Had his own reloading
outfit. My Mother , Ellis, always said George was fun and a favorite among the young people. He also played an accordion, loved to sing and played for many of the dances at that time.
He owned two small pieces of land, five acres in the east part of town and a small farm north of
Mt. Pleasant near where the trail road crosses the main highway.
Their first child, Arthur G. was born 20 Nov. 1894. Mother said she was kidded a lot because I
was so dark and had so much brown hair, I must of got that fro my Father as his complexion was on
that side where mother had blue eyes and light hair. Over the years they had saved and put their money in some Mill Stock and lost it all thought some crocked fellows. He got very discouraged at this time. A few years before this his Father, Abraham, and the two wives, Elmira and some of their families had moved to Lawrence, Emery County, helping with the surveying work.
As they were getting along in years, they decided to have a reunion of the two families, which
turned out very successful. George’s brother Arthur had went to Kelowna B.C. Canada to make his
home. He and his wife, Jannie and two small children came down for the big event. Many pictures were taken at this time of both families together, which are cherished today by all the descendants of
Abraham Day and his two wives Elmira and Charlotte.
While here Georges brother Arthur had talked a great deal about Canada and had encouraged
him to come up and look the country over. Now this being the time he had just lost his saving sand was so discouraged so he decided to go. They left Mt. Pleasant, 4 Jan. 1898. His brother, Arthur was the foreman of the big LaQuim Ranch so he started work there. He stayed in Canada almost two years with out this wife and three children. Now he felt like he could afford to send for us. We left Mt. Pleasant right away and landed there 23 Oct. 1900. He met us at the train in Vancouver.
A very happy reunion. I was now six years old and knew my Daddy. Today that is one of my
most cherished moments. Our life there for six months was happy but not an easy one as Canada was
still in the Pioneer Stage. Father worked on the Horrage Ranch as well as the LaQuim. They worked in the timber cutting down trees and floating them down the stream to the mills. The LaQuim Ranch home was a very large one. One large room was for dancing. Father always helped out with the dance music, singing and playing his accordion.
They did a lot of ice-skating that winter. Large bon fires were built on the banks of the
Okanogan Lake. Couples would skate together as well as a lot of single skating. They would bring their children and they would play around the campfires and the older children learned to skate. Another sport they enjoyed was fishing. Large holes were cut into the ice; seines were set with bait to catch hundreds of fish. They also fished with hook and line. My brothers often did this through the holes. I still can remember what a lot of fun it was. Trapping for game was a real industry at that time.
There were so many men working on the ranch. They had a large place where they ate and had a
Chinese cook. His name was Gong. He did all the cooking for the men. He and my Father George were very friendly and he spent a lot of his time playing with us children. He ask us Utah kids about Mormons and was surprised to learn they didn’t have horns and that we were Mormons. He thought
they were terrible people and wicked He could talk some English and some times he would talk to us in his language. He also told us stories of China.
In the summer of 1900 my Father was binding a big load of hay, the binding pole broke and
threw him off the load. He lit on his feet and at the time he did not think he was hurt much, but his
lungs were sore and he developed a bad cough, which never did stop. Later he caught a bad cold which
seemed to get worse. he had such a good job he hated to quit and take care of himself like he should
and it developed into pneumonia. The doctor said he had been working with a temperature of 102. It
had developed to the stage he could not do much for him and it soon developed into typhoid
pneumonia. He suffered so terrible before he died. A very young man with to much ambition at an early age of thirty-five, 14 April 1901. His burial was in the Kelowna Cemetery. He should have been laid away in endowment L.D.S. clothing, but no Mormons there and mother knew nothing about sewing, so he was buried in a white suit, and after most of the people had left the cemetery his wife Ellis dedicated the grave along with her three children, Nathan, Irvine and Olea kneeling beside her. I’m sure it took a lot of courage to go through what she did at that time.
Mother wanted to bring her children up in a Mormon community as she was a true L.D.S. Saint
and it also was her husbands wish before he passed away that she finish her life in Utah with her three children. In three weeks she was back in her little home in Mt. Pleasant Utah.
While in Canada, George’s brother Arthur and wife, and many friends and neighbors were very
good to Mother. When we got on the boat to cross the Okanogan Lake, many tears were shed and a
dear friend handed Mother a large envelope. When it was opened later, it contained one hundred and
twenty dollar, and names of those who had given it with their sympathy and wished for a safe trip back to Utah.
After fifty four years, my husband Newel and I had the pleasure of going back to Canada with
our son-in-law, Rex Hansen and wife Lorraine, to see Uncle Arthur who was Ninety two at the time.
He told us many things of their early life in Canada. How rough it was and that my Father , George,
was never cut out for that type of life. He said he was to kind and good to everyone
We visited Father’s grave. It had a nice head stone and also a beautiful lilac bush all in bloom
on the lot. I took a start back home, which grew. It is beautiful every spring, and a different verity from any around here.
Uncle Arthur was very feeble at the time and when we left he gave me a one hundred dollar
check. He died that fall, Sept 1954. Avery rich man in dollars but never did anything in a religions way.
Was last child of Abraham Days.
Family Group Sheet can be found here:
Census Record found here: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MNSK-1S1
Need a Photo !