Tuesday, June 14, 2016

History of Mads Christian and Mariane Jensen Gjettrup

Wandering the Cemetery on Memorial Day I ran onto these graves.  GJETTRUP
A name I wasn't familiar with.  And so I did some research and I found this wonderful  history.  

Posted 10 Nov 2012 by triniheese

Prepared by Winona Hoyal

Mariane Jensen, my maternal grandmother, was born in Denmark on January 2, 1839. Mads Christian Gjettrup was born in Denmark on September 23, 1831. They were married on December 20, 1857. They had 12 children, 5 of them died as children. At least 3 died of what was then called "galloping consumption," now known as tuberculosis. All but 3 of the children were born in Denmark. They lost a child in 1864, a baby boy, an 8 year old in 1869, a 1 year old and a 10 year old in 1876, and their last boy dide soon after birth, 4 years after coming to America. Losing 5 children in all.

In the 1860's, missionaries from the church of Jesus Christ of latter-day saints came to their door in Denmark. Mariane knew the gospel was true long before Mads who wouldn'glisten to the message. She would read the Book of Mormon when grandpa was away at work. She had a false-bottom chair in which she'd hide the Book of Mormon when she knew he was coming, because she knew he would get angry if he caught her reading it. In 1864, one of their children died, and the missionaries were so good to them that grandpa was impressed and listened to their message. On November 20, 1864, they were baptized. In 1877 they came to the U.S.A. Mariane said it took a year to get ready to come to Zion. She sewed all their clothing which was a loan to help members come to Zion. It was under this plan that they came. My mother said that she remembered as a little girl tha last cowas that were sold to finish paying the Church for the passage.

They landed in Ogden Utah after weeks in "steerage," the bottom of the ship where the poor were put, with 4 children, .50 cents, and speaking no English. A man who had come from Sanpete County Utah with his produce, and had an empty wagon going back, took their .50 cents to take them to Sanpete. They must have known someone in Sanpete, a former missionary, or some person who had gone there earlier, but I do not kinow. Grandma was pregnant. Thine, (known as Tenie) was born in a dug-out in September, 3 months after they arrived. When the man who took them to Sanpete got there it was dark, and he left them at what he thought was a straw stack. In the morning it appeared to Grandpa to be a manure pile becase it was so full of manure, a distasteful thinkg to Grandpa who was quite fastidious when possible. If he'd had the money then, I'm sure that he would ha ve gone back to Denmark. Mother said that grandpa was very indignant.

Where they stayed the first few days, I do not know. I know that Carl who was 18, worked for a man who gave him a lot in Fairview, Sandpete County, Utah for his work. Here they made a dug-out where Thine was born. A dug-out is a hole dug in the ground with branches covering the top to keep out some of the cold and sun. Four years later, Mads Christian was born but did not live. and 3 years after that, my mother Mariane was born.

The first year they lived on milk from a tithing cow, carrots and a whole-wheat bread. Grandpa was a carpenter, and someone who owned an old house in bad disrepair offered them the house to live in if they would repair it. This grandpa did but as soon as it was fixed, the people did not want it back. After they had been here the number of prescribed years, they got a homestead. I think it was 160 acres, but i'm not sure. In signing the contract or deed, grandpa was cheated out of his water right to theland becasue he was unable to read English. All the water they had left was a well near the house they eventually bult, made out of rock from the fields. They raised a garden with the water from the spring, but did not know what to do with the rest of the land with no water. Grandpa had heard of ta new kind of wheat grown on dry land. He sent for some of the seed, and because he was the first in the Balley to grow that kind of wheat, it was called "Gjettrupwheat." At one time he was building a housae, whether it eas the rock house or not, I do not know. At any rate, he had bought shingles for his new house, but because of harvesting, had been unable to finish the roof. One man in the ward came to grandpa and said, "brother Gjettrup, you have shingles you are not using. I need shingles and the saw mill is out of them at present. Le me use yours, and when the saw mill gets some, I will returnthem." Mads consented. A few days later, the man came over with a papter to sign saying it was a contract for the shingles. When weeks went by and no shingles arrived, grandpa went to the man and asked him about them. The man said "What shingles?" Grandpa learned taht the paper he signed wa a statement that the man had paid for the shingles. These are a few things that happened to them to try their faith. Grandma adid that some people in the Church should be called "Latter-day Devils" instead of "Latter-day Saints." But she alwasys told her family that the Gospel was true, and taht even though men did wrong, the important things were the principles of the gospel, and not to worry about what men did. Later they sold their farm and moved to Mount Pleasant to the little house we visited last year.

They were called by the Stake President in January 1907 to receive their 2nd anointing. Probably ill health prevented their receiving it while he was alive, because it was done by proxy on July 1, 1908. He died January 31, 1908 fo cyctitis due to an enlarged prostrate. Grandma died April 11, 1914, the week after my brother Jim was born. Grandma had a tumor which interfered with her eating of solid food. The doctor had her on gruel, but she was so hungry for a piece of breda and cheese. Aunt Tenie who came every day to look after her while her mother was in bed. funally gave in to her pleadings for the bread and cheese. The food would not go up or down. I'm sure she enjoyed her last bit of bread and cheese. I remember as a small child how much whe like bread and cheese. When I went into her room to visit her she would make sandwiches of bread and cheese and cut them into very small squares to feed to me. Today, they probably would have operated on grandma and grandpa but they were sondidered too old in those days to risk and operation. I also remember coughing a great deal an spitting up blood. She uded to call me "tor mikel" becasue she'd give me magazines to play with, and didn't mind if I tore them. I called her "spit mikel." I'm sure this isn't the right way to say or spell the Danish words but that is how I remember them.

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"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."

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