History of the life of Ann Lewis Clegg
(Dictated by Herself)
Written by Carlie Clegg Tidwell, her youngest child.
Written for the benefit of her children, grandchildren, and all her posterity, loved ones and friends, who know her, love her and have proven her to be
As a wife the truest;
As grandma the dearest;
As a neighbor the kindest;
As a friend the noblest; and
As a Mother, the dearest and sweetest that children on this earth ever knew.
A woman who was true to her fellow men, to her country and to her God.
I was born in Cardiff, Wales, June 25, 1836, being the eldest child of a family of seven, namely: Ann (myself), Fred, who died in infancy, Mary, Amelia, who died in childhood, Fred and the twins William and Preece (The latter died in infancy).
My father was John Lewis, my mother Ann John Lewis, both being of Welsh descent, born and raised in Cardiff, Wales. My father was the eldest child of Edward and Amelia Preece Lewis, the other brothers and sisters being Edmund, Edward, William, Betsy and Mary. My mother was the eldest child of John and Ann John and had two brothers, Daniel and John and one sister Cellia. As far back as I can remember, they all lived in Cardiff, Wales, and were respectable, honest, ambitious, law-abiding people; being farmers, mechanics, merchants and master builders. My father and his brother Edmund built the Cardiff Docks.
As I turn the leaves back from the great life book of memory, I can see the house where I was born, a little French cottage (The house my father built.) in Frenches Row, in the northern part of the city, Cardiff. The front was built of alabaster rock, the windows quaint and small, the space within consisting of two rooms upstairs and two down. The furniture within was plain and scant. I was the only child born there, and when I was three years old we moved into a beautiful home on Millicent street. It was a large rock dwelling and contained seven rooms, well-furnished. I seem to see now my angel mother as she went about in that beautiful home, bringing sunshine, peace and love to all. She was of medium height, black hair, and eyes and skin as fair as alabaster. She was consumptive, and therefore looked delicate. She was beautiful in spirit as well as in body.
My father was a tall, dark-complexioned man, straight as an arrow and firm as the Rock of Ages. He was a kind, charitable and very religious man. He was at that time occupied as master builder of the Cardiff docks. Our home was a happy one. Here, all my brothers and sisters were born. We were Methodists and were reared and educated under a strict Methodist training; my father being a Methodist minister.
How well I remember one evening when Father and mother were entertaining some guests at dinner, and I came near being burned to death. I was about seven years old and was dressed that evening in a white mull dress. The fire was burning brightly in the grate in the back parlor. There was a little book on the mantle that I wanted to get. I reached for it and in doing so, my dress caught on fire and in a second was in flames. I ran through the hall to get to my mother, when my Uncle Edward, who was entering the house with his overcoat on his arm, threw it around me, thus smothering the flames. When the excitement subdued, it was found I was burned very badly. Doctors were sent for and it was a whole year before I recovered. How patient and loving were my dear parents, and how they tried to make everything as pleasant as they could for me. We always kept a hired girl, a washerwoman and a family doctor.
All of us children received a fair common education. Father wished my brother, Fred, and myself to go to France to finish ours, but there was something else in store for us, as you will see. I was quite a delicate child and unable to attend school regularly. Our lives went on day by day happy, only one thing and that was the ill health of my sweet mother. She had consumption and day by day gradually grew worse, until one beautiful morning, the fifth of May, 1849, she, like a beautiful flower, faded and died, left us, to bloom in the Kingdom of Heaven, where she went to join the angels and clasp to her arms her children and loved ones that had gone before her. A day or two before she died, she called me to her bed and said to a lady friend who was in the room, “Here is a dutiful child, one who has never given me a cross word in her life.” I loved to wait on her and though young, I tried to do all I could to please her. My father dearly loved her, and her death was a severe blow to him, as well as to us children. She was 33 years old and left a husband and four children, besides loved ones. No one can tell the loss of a mother unless they have had the trial. I was then 13 years of age. We buried her in our family vault.
After mother’s death we were very lonely, and would have been more so if we hadn’t had our dear Grandma Lewis, who took care of us and our home, with the help of the housekeeper. Grandma was the most charitable woman I ever knew. She was charitable to everybody and everything. My father couldn’t stand to live in this home after my mother’s death, so we moved into a beautiful home Father had built on Humphrey Street. My father now living from the rents of his houses having in all 12. He was also a merchant, a lease owner, a freeholder of life, living entirely on his income.
Four years after mother’s death, Father married again. A Mrs. Priscilla Phillips, a widow with one daughter, Louise. She was a very sweet lady, and we all grew to love her and her little daughter. She was kind and good to us and tried as near as she could to take the place of our mother.
Grandmother was now in her old home, but would come to see us every day. She was one of the best grandmothers in the world, and we all dearly loved her. Grandfather died several years before mother. About this time, Mormonism was being expounded in Cardiff. Captain Jones and Elder Henshaw were there teaching this new and strange gospel to all who would listen. My father seemed to grasp the Gospel at once and after two years of careful study of it and having gained a testimony of its truth, embraced it. My stepmother soon followed and the children, myself being the last to accept it. I was baptized by Elder George Taylor in the River Taft at eight-o-clock at night in September. Elder Daniel Spencer stayed with us.
We were very happy in the new Gospel, but our relatives were very bitter, we saw we could not live there in peace, so decided to come to Zion. We had a new addition to our family now, a sister, who was named Millie. We also had a cousin living with us named Caroline Mathews who was my stepmother’s sister’s girl. Her parents being dead, my stepmother took her to raise as her own.
My father sold his store, house and everything we held dear to come to a new country far away, but persecution was so great we had to if we lived the Gospel. We were two weeks selling our belongings; first our beautiful big store and goods, then our houses, etc.
After about three months preparation, we bid farewell to all and took the train from Cardiff to Liverpool where we were to sail in the ship Golconda. Grandmother Lewis was broken hearted too, as were all our relatives and friends we left behind.
Father brought to America 25 families beside his own and that is where he lost so much money as they nearly all apostatized and only a few paid back the money Father had loaned them to come.
We arrived at Liverpool safe and took first class passage in the Golconda for St. Louis, U.S.A. February 4, 1854. We were all seasick and therefore our voyage wasn’t very pleasant. There were 800 Saints on board and it was the month of April. Nearly all the Saints were from Wales. We were six weeks on the water. It was very rough and had some very severe storms at sea. Three were buried in the sea of the Company and quite a number were seriously sick. I saw a number of whales. I was so sick. I don’t like the water and my voyage was one of fear and dread. I was so glad when I landed in New Orleans, I could of fell down and kissed the earth, and it was sometime before we could walk as it seemed as though the earth rose up and bumped us.
It was about June now and we could hardly wait to go on land. It was nearly morning when our ship sailed into harbor. Men they called land sharks crowded on the vessel and tried to plunder all they could. Policemen were there and protected the Saints.
After getting through with the custom house proceedings, our family took a cab to the hotel and stayed there till about 4 o’clock p.m., when we all took first class passage on the beautiful boat John Simmons [John Simonds] (the largest boat on the river) to sail up the Mississippi. We had every comfort on the boat that could be desired and it was simply grand. After we had been sailing for a day or two, the boat got caught in a sand bar and we were detained four days, making it in all about two weeks before we arrived in St. Louis, after a delightful journey. The steerage-saint passengers on this boat was very sick, and we girls used to take them good things to eat nearly every day.
When we got off the boat we were taken in vehicles out to the edge of St. Louis to McFee’s campground, where all the Saints were camped, preparatory to going to Utah. Father bought all the camp outfit and provisions to start on our journey but it was six weeks before we started.
The families of Saints Father had brought were all to go to Utah in what they called the Ten Pound Company and then settle with Father later.
We went in an independent company or a company that furnished themselves. We had in our outfit to travel across the plains 2 wagons, 12 herd of oxen, 1 yoke of cows and a beautiful riding mare, saddle, etc. We had two teamsters. We had all kinds of provisions, bacon, hams, flour, crackers and everything to eat one would wish. We even had a churn and used to put the milk from the cows in the churn in the morning in the wagon and by night we would have butter. We were clothed comfortable and had plenty of good bedding.
I think it was about the first week in July when we started across the Great Plains. The captain of our company was Captain Richardson. There were 40 wagons, three and four families to a wagon. They would take turns in riding part way and walking part way across the plains. I will say that before we started, cholera broke out and several hundred died. It still continued and many died (mostly young men) while on our journey.
Our company would start first, early in the morning and we would travel until towards night, when they would be found a suitable camping place where the cattle would be corralled by the wagons forming a circle on the outside, the cattle within. Campfires built, supper prepared, have prayers, sing and retire. Buffalo chips was the fuel. Camp fires built, supper prepared, have prayers, sing, and retire.
The heat was very oppressive, and we would all get very tired, footsore and weary. We always stopped over Sunday where we would have worship and have a glorious time, as we had a number of good musicians in our company, who had brought their musical instruments along with them.
We saw lots of deer, antelope and buffalo. A few were killed. Also saw a few mountain sheep. The Indians were our dread as there were so many of them, and they were all on the warpath, and we had to be so careful of fear they would kill us. One day we came upon a large number, in Ash Hollow, of Sioux Indians. We were very frightened of them. They were on their way to war with another tribe. My father gave them a large barrel of crackers, and all the Company gave them something, and we got past them in peace. I had never seen an Indian before. I was frightened of the Indians, of the panthers roar at night and the loneliness of the plains nearly drove me wild. Mother and the children were like me, and we were wishing every day we could reach our destination that night.
There were a great many deaths in our Company. We just had to sew the corpse in a sheet or blanket, dig a deep hole and bury them and go on. Oh, the trials of the Saints endured, no tongue can tell and no pen can write the suffering. Mother was confined at Ash Hollow. Dr. Richardson waited on her. A baby boy was born to her, and he was named John Samuel Lewis. She did fine. My sister, Mary, had the mountain fever and nearly died. I was well during the whole journey and so were the other children.
How we did rejoice, after many weeks of travel, we arrived on the Big Mountain and could look down on the Great Salt Lake and the Salt Lake Valley. We sung the songs of Zion in earnest and gave up thanks to God that he had watched over us, and we were permitted to behold the Land of Zion. We came through Emigration Canyon, through the valley, and on to the public square, where we camped with hundreds of others for a few weeks until we could get located.
Brigham Young was there first and gave us a hearty welcome. Some were expecting their loved ones in the Company, and I tell you it was a grand reunion, a time of rejoicing together. I was glad our journey was ended, but I was very lonesome for a while. We had been three months on the road and arrived in Salt Lake September 30, 1854, just in time to attend the great October conference of the Saints, where we had a glorious time.
Father now bought a home in the 19th Ward. Just one room and a small lean-to kitchen. We soon got located in our new home and began our first experience in pioneer life. While we were in Cardiff, we were desirous of obtaining a home, so when we got here we would have some place to stay.
Father spoke of this to Elder Dan Jones, who was laboring there as a missionary, and he proposed to sell one to Father. He represented to us a good farm in Utah that he would sell for $2900. Father, thinking he could trust him, bought this farm and paid him the money down for it before we left Cardiff. When we arrived in Utah and located this property, it was nothing but sagebrush with no house on it all as he had said. He told us it was a beautiful farm with a nice dwelling house on it. Father had been deceived beyond measure, both in this project and in bringing the emigrants to this country.
When we came in the valley and told Brigham Young, he held a council and had Dan Jones up before it, and he promised to pay the money back, but he never did. All he gave Father was a pair of mules and a buggy. Thus, Father had gone through a fortune but had never lost faith or turned from the Gospel. Daniel Jones, on his deathbed, years later, sent for Father and begged for Father to forgive [him], which he did, and he died in peace.
When Father got in the valley he had to start out with 12 head of oxen, two cows, two wagons and a tent, and a nice mare, some provisions and some money and all of us well.
We joined with the people and although it was a very severe winter, we enjoyed ourselves very much.
New immigrants were coming all the time, and I would go with other young people to what I called the Public Square, and there welcomed the Saints who had reached their journey’s end. It was at this place that I met the man who later became my husband. It was in September, 1855, (I was 19 years old.) when, with some others, I was shaking hands with the Saints and was introduced to Henry Clegg, a tall, (30 year old) light-complexioned young man (a widower with one little boy) and with whom I fell in love and he with me. Our love and companionship for each other grew stronger each day, and on December 3, 1855, we were married by Elder John Nebeker at the home of Mr. Hughes and later, August 14, 1857, sealed in the Endowment House by President Brigham Young.
My husband, Henry Clegg, was born June 7, 1825, Preston, Lancashire, England. He was the youngest child of of eight, namely: Thomas, James, Margaret, Jonathan, Betsy, Alice, Henry and himself. His father was Henry Clegg and his mother Ellen Cardwell. They all lived in England, and my husband and his brother Jonathan were the only ones to emigrate to Utah.
My husband had married Hannah Eastham in Preston, England and unto them were born three children, namely: Israel, Thomas and James. His wife and son, James, died while crossing the plains, and thus he reached the valley of Salt Lake a widower with the one little boy, Israel.
After our marriage, we rented a small log house in the 19th Ward in Salt Lake and commenced housekeeping. We didn’t have hardly anything to commence life with but our health and ambition and resolved we would work together in love and with the help of our Heavenly Father, be homebuilders in the great desert (as such it seemed then). We were happy. I taking care of my humble home and Israel, and my husband toiling for us both. Our joy was complete when on November 15, 1856, a baby boy came to bless our union. He was a lovely boy, and we named him John Henry after my father and husband. My folks lived in the city and, of course, thought the world of my baby.
That winter, we had living with us, a young girl from England, Margaret Ann Griffiths, and who later married my husband in obedience to the law of polygamy. I consented for her to join our family, which she did August 14, 1857.
My husband was well educated, but as the country was all we had, we had to work at anything we could to make a living. He worked hard at various things and with our helping him all we could, we got along all right.
About this time, what is known as the Move came, owing to Johnston’s Army entering Salt Lake Valley and all the Saints were requested to move south, so we got ready to leave with the rest. My folks had been in Tooele a short time, and at the time of the Move, I went to meet them and didn’t know them. Father had a pair of breeches made from a bed tick, and mother and the children dressed so funny. However, we joined the Move and went south locating at Springville.
Here we resided for 14 years. During the time we had secured us a home, first a little shack and later a doby house of six rooms, ten acres of land, a team, cows, etc. My husband had a shoe shop and tannery. He played at dances and later lectured throughout the country on phrenology.
Our family had increased considerably by this time. Myself having had seven more children, namely: William J., Fredrick, Lewis P., Franklin, Amelia Ann and Ellen Juventa and Cardwell. Margaret having had six, namely: Thomas G., Herbert L., Margaret Ann, Henry James, Hannah Mary and George A. And with John Henry and Israel we went through all kinds of trials of pioneer life. We were poor and had to struggle hard to get enough to eat. Margaret and I wove and spun and made our clothes, worked and schemed every way to get along. I had previously sold my clothes I had brought from the Old Country for flour.
And yet through all this, I blessed the day that I came to this glorious country and was thankful I could have sons and daughters born in this land of freedom and liberty, this land of opportunity and although we had to struggle hard for an existence in the new life, yet our future we knew would be bright in the God-blessed country. We rejoiced in the gospel in the Ward. My husband was choir leader of over 60 voices, leader of the Martial Band and was always at his post during Indian troubles, which were terrible. We three always sung together wherever we went, and one of our favorite songs was Ever of Thee my Love I Am Fondly Dreaming. We enjoyed ourselves amid our poverty.
As our boys grew up we realized we would have to have more land to keep them with us and had decided to move on further south to Levan where land could be obtained on easy terms. When my husband’s brother, Jonathan, came down from Heber, Wasatch County (commonly called Provo Valley) and persuaded us to move there. So, April 16, 1872, we started by team for Heber, camped in Provo Canyon all night and got there the next day.
Our boy, Israel, (for I had raised him and he seemed just like my own) stayed in Springville and the next February 1873, married Verona Noakes and settled there. We gave him what we could for a start when we left.
Arriving at Heber we went to Uncle Jonathan’s, pitched our tents, and lived thus for a while and then moved to a house on Main Street, about where the Turner Opera House now stands. We liked Heber and prospered by working hard. Little by little we secured a homestead and also some city lots, which was built on them later a log house each of one room. The two were built on one lot and then later, at the time of the Manifesto, Margaret’s house was moved to a lot of her own on First West and Third South. My home was on Main Street and Second South, where it stands today. Of course, we made improvements on them as fast as we could.
My husband taught school and worked in the Church, being Stake Clerk, Sunday School Superintendent and Bishop of the Heber West Ward. At Heber my three youngest children were born. Brigham (there was an earthquake the night he was born, how well I remember), Carlie and Henrietta (last-named dying at birth). Margaret also had five children born here: Charles David, Heber (who died at birth), Josephus, Levi Webb and Jane Eleanor.
At the time we moved to Springville, my father, mother, etc., moved to Spanish Fork and settled there. My brothers marrying and also my sister, Mary. She married a Mr. Redd, and he died, and later she married Joshua Hawkes and moved to Idaho.
My father and brother, Fred, both went to Wales on missions at different times. In 1887 my stepmother died and soon after my father.
My health was real poor for years. We schooled our children and tried to do the best we could for them. My older boys had now grown to manhood and on December 2, 1880, my boy, William, was married to Jacobina Murdoch, of Heber, at Salt Lake City. Carlie, my baby, was then two months old. On September 24, 1881, their first baby was born and my first grandchild. How proud we were. They named her Tillie. How time flies. The next year Fred was married to Carlie Luke and in five years my first girl Millie was married to Livingston Montgomery.
As time went on we were blessed with numerous grandchildren and it was such a happy time for all of us. Our children who were married lived near us in little homes of their own, where we could see them nearly every day. We were a great family for parties and singing and music of all kinds and enjoyed ourselves immensely. We thought our oldest son, John, would be a bachelor but on New Year’s day, 1887, he married Martha Smith.
Margaret’s children were also marrying one after another. Her oldest boy being married the same day as my boy, Will, and thus we had a double wedding. We were building on to our home and was soon fixed up real comfortable. We had lots of parties, wedding receptions and good times along with our troubles and cares.
My husband was Justice of the Peace at one time and also served as Water Master, so he did a little of nearly everything, although he was a man of great intellect. We had good neighbors and loved the community in which we lived.
Our next child to marry was Juventa. We named her after the ship my husband crossed the ocean in. She was a delicate child and never walked until she was four years old. My babies were all large ones and had such an abundance of black hair. As Juventa grew up she became stronger and was married on her father’s birthday, June 7, 1894. We had a grand reception for her. Her husband was Frederick J. Tullidge of Salt Lake City, where she went to live, but only stayed a short time. They soon were located near us as the other children were.
Several years prior to this time, my husband had gone into the mercantile business and our store was located at the south side of our house. We bought the building from Hatches and my boy, Will, and others moved it on our lot. My husband liked this work, but I didn’t very much. We were quite successful.
The Indians would never trade with anyone but me. I know in future years the children will have a good laugh at the Indian incident, the homemade telephone, the bee’s nest, old Pid and so many comical things that happened in our life at this time.
I was always a great hand to look after my cows, pigs, chickens, etc., and have something good to eat. One thing I did enjoy was preparing a good meal for my husband and children and all who entered our home. We always had lots of company from the time we were first married, and many a time I didn’t know where the next meal was coming from, but I always managed to get something.
One time in our early married life, we didn’t have a thing to eat, and I didn’t know what to do, when a hawk flew over our house and dropped a chicken at my door. So, we were always provided for somehow.
I remember once when my boys were small, they wanted me to cook enough pancakes so that they could have all they wanted. So, I told Israel to go and get me some buttermilk at one of the neighbors, and I would scare up some flour if I could, and they could have enough for once. And they did, as I cooked them pancakes until they were satisfied.
After we came to Heber, my husband also had a shingle mill in the canyon, and we lived there some of the time. We had all kinds of experiences, too numerous to mention, and had tried many different ways to make a living. We got along nicely with the mercantile business and my husband seemed adapted to that kind of business. We were comfortable and happy and, of course, growing old. My husband was 11 years older than me, and I was four years older than Margaret.
After attending the dedication of the Salt Lake Temple, my husband was returning home by stage from Park City, when he met with an accident, broke his collarbone and injured himself other ways (June 28,1894) from which he never entirely recovered.
On June 30, 1894, we (my husband, Margaret and myself) went and had our Second Endowments. My husband’s first wife being sealed to him at this time also. We had a grand time. We enjoyed life so much now, with our children all around us and such good children they were.
In August of that same year, my youngest child, Carlie, came down with typhoid fever and was very low, when a great sorrow came in our life. My husband dropped dead of heart failure in the store while waiting on a customer, who happened to be Margaret. She was getting some apples.
That morning we had cream biscuits, beefsteak, peaches and cream and such a lovely breakfast. He enjoyed it so much and seemed to be feeling so well. We had such a nice time at breakfast, and we went in the room to see Carlie before he went to the store. He asked her what she wanted to eat and she said “Tomatoes and cucumbers”. He told her she should have them, as there was a peddler driving to the store then. He said to me, “I will be back in a few minutes, and we will give her some”. He left and when he came back they brought him in dead.
He had just gone in the store. Margaret was there and wanted some apples. He got them for her and said, “I have given you thirteen (a baker’s dozen). She was right behind him coming from the green grocery room to the other one, when he fell. She thought he had fainted, but when help arrived it was found he had died instantaneously, the way he said he would die. He always said he never wanted to suffer and linger in sickness, but when the Lord wanted to take him home, to do it once, which he did. I believe his life had been such a good one, that the Lord had granted his desire. A minister once tried to poison him because he was Mormon, but didn’t succeed.
My husband’s death was a terrible shock to me, but I had to stand it the best I could, as my girl was so very sick. Of course, this made her worse, and I have to live for the living. I knew my life companion was separated from me, but I knew also that my Heavenly Father would help me in this great trial as he had done in many others, and I put my trust in Him. This was the 30th day of August, and he was buried the 2nd of September. Relatives and friends came from different parts of the country. He had been a great man and was well known.
It was a grand funeral and one of the largest ever held in Wasatch County. The Sunday Schools all marched, also the priesthood. The procession was blocks long. The tabernacle was decorated beautifully. The singing and speaking lovely. Everything was done in order to show the great love, honor and respect due him. His life on earth was finished. Behind him was left his numerous posterity to try and follow in his footsteps. His had been a well-spent life, and he had been called home to continue his work and prepare for our coming in the Great Eternal Home. “We will meet but shall miss him. There will be one vacant chair. We shall linger to caress him while we breathe our evening prayer.”
When the excitement was all over, we all, of course, were lost without him, but settled all affairs the best we could. The store was closed and sold later. Carlie had taken a change for the better, and it was through faith and prayers that she was saved. After the expenses, debts, etc., had been paid, everything settled, we were left with our home and a farm but not much ready money.
I managed to keep Brig and Carlie in school and they, as soon as possible, used their education in employment for our support. We got along very nicely and my children were my all now. Brig taught school for several years and then fulfilled a mission to the Southern States.
While he was gone, Millie and I were out riding with our buggy, and [the] horse took fright and ran away with us, breaking my leg and four ribs and bruising Millie terrible. I was laid up for 17 weeks, but when I got better I could walk as good as ever, which was wonderful for a woman of my age.
Shortly after his return, he married Cleo Pearl Huffaker of Midway on August 12, 1900. I had the typhoid fever that summer. That fall Carlie taught school again, and we got along fine.
My children were such a comfort to me and so were my sisters. We took boarders in the summer, and Carilie and I were constant companions. We had some lovely girls stay with us, Belcia Howe, Effie Bullock and Sadie Blake.
In 1899, my son, Will, with his family, moved to Provo or Vineyard and near Provo. This was the first break in our family, but it was not very far away for me to go see them. I traveled quite a bit and enjoyed my life. My health was fairly good. I was so pleased when we had the water works here and the electric lights, and I did enjoy them so much. We were among the first to have them placed in our home.
Brig had, shortly after his marriage, moved to Salt Lake to go to school. He studied hard and was now a successful lawyer. A year or so later, Juvie and her husband moved to Salt Lake. Before this, however, Carlie and I lived a year in Salt Lake for the benefit of my health. I loved to attend all the conferences at Salt Lake, which I did. My children were all so good to me. Carlie now worked at office work, and we got along fine. While attending an October Conference, Carlie and I met a young man, David A. Tidwell, who was on his return from a mission to the Southern States, and who later became her husband. He came and visited us that New Years, and the next May he sent for Carlie and I to come and visit [him] and his people, his home, etc. in Carbon County, which we did. We certainly had a lovely trip and a grand time. He paid our expenses and did everything for us to make our visit pleasant.
On our return, we learned of the sad death of my sister’s youngest daughter, Frona. I took the next train out with John, Fred, Millie and Brig joined us at Salt Lake, and we all attended the funeral at Franklin, Idaho. There had been many sad deaths in our family as time goes on.
That winter Carlie was married January 15, 1908. Walt and Mary A. Wickham were visiting us and it will never be forgotten the lovely time we had for several weeks. A party was given in each of the homes of the family, and we sure had a time of rejoicing, one that will never be forgotten. Carlie was married in the Temple. Millie went with them, they wanted me to go, but I didn’t feel able. She had a time at Brig’s in Salt Lake and then went on a trip for a month. On their return, I met them in Provo and after visiting in Utah County, we returned home and had a dinner for her near relatives. Before she was married, I asked Lon, as her husband was called, to promise never to take her away from me as long as I lived. I wanted them both to live with me in the old home, which they have done. At my request, they bought the old home. We are just as happy as can be. Her marriage has made no difference. She is the same and with me constantly, which is a great blessing as I do not think I could [have] stood my last child to have gone away and [leave] me. We enjoyed each other more than ever now, go out everywhere and have such a good time. Her husband’s work calls him away the greater part of the time, but we so enjoy his company when he can come home, for he is as good to me as my own son, and so are my other son-in-laws.
My family is all grown and married now and such a comfort to me as are all my grandchildren. On my 75th birthday, my family gave a grand party in my honor. All my old friends and neighbors were there, and all my family. Tables were set out on the lawn and all the love and honor and respect that could be shown anyone was shown me. We had a delightful time. My old age is filled with peace, love and joy and I am perfectly contented.
Sometime ago, I went to Mary A. Wickham’s funeral, and oh, it was sad. This fall I have been visiting in Salt Lake and all down in Utah County with my people. I am now enjoying being home again. My sister is here to spend the part of the winter with me, and we expect to have a jolly time. I enjoy the company of Margaret also, as we have always got along together. I am so happy in my home, surrounded by my children, friends and neighbors whom I have. I enjoy the theaters.
We had a lovely Thanksgiving. It is Christmas time now, and my children gave me a beautiful plush coat and set of furs, and my grandchildren a lovely throw for my head. They are grand.
Carlie takes such delight in fixing my hair and making me look nice. I am being repaid for the sacrifices I made in the past years. I never have regretted embracing the gospel nor the many trials, etc., I have had through it. I have been blessed, and I am thankful I am where I am and my old age is surely crowned with the choicest blessings.
Mother’s health had been failing all winter and gradually grew worse, and in February grew serious. Brights Disease developed rapidly. The best doctors were called to attend her, and everything that could be done for her was done, but to no avail, for on April 11, 1913, her angel spirit passed away, surrounded by all her children. Her children attended her during all her sickness, also their wives and husbands. Relatives, friends, and neighbors were with her constantly. She had every comfort that human hands could provide, but she left us anyway. We didn’t want to part with her, for if ever a mother was worshipped, she was. It seemed so cruel to have her separated from us, and especially myself, who had been with her constantly all my life. Her place can never be filled, and I will never get over it. But when death calls, we have to obey.
She was 77 years old, mother of 11 children, grandmother to 54 and great grandmother to 10. She had hosts of friends and good neighbors who all loved her dearly and will miss her so much. We know she will rejoice in being again united with Father and they will anxiously await our coming when again we can all be united in our eternal home.
Her funeral was grand. She was shown all the respect, honor and love that could be bestowed upon any woman. The grandchildren all marched dressed in white and each placed a beautiful flower upon her casket. The services were grand and everything went to show what a beautiful flower she was and what a well-spent life she had had.
Her posterity is great and all are proud of their lineage. She was a chosen spirit of God. She had many sacrifices but they brought forth choicest blessings. She lived and died in the gospel and never once regretted, but blessed the day she accepted it and came to this country. Her life was indeed a glorious one. She made the best of everything and always looked on the bright side. She was loved by all who knew her and worshipped by her family. Our parents are gone from us, but their spirits will ever linger near. Their lives beautiful examples for us to follow. We tried while they were living, to show how much we loved them and how much we appreciated all the sacrifices they had been through for us, and for what they did for us all. So now to further prove our love and devotion, we must try to follow in their footsteps guided by their spirits and prompted by memories, which cling to us of the best father and mother in all the world, whom we children love so, and the memory of whom shall never be forgotten. We are proud of our parents and love, honor and appreciate what they have done for us. We can only repay them by making our lives worthy of their approbation.
We miss them keenly, but realize that could not stay with us forever. We hope to see them again, and all be united once more in the Great Eternal Home.
Carlie Clegg Tidwell
August 31, 1916