Last weekend was Amanda’s sister’s wedding in Manti, Sanpete, Utah. We went down to attend the wedding for Zachary & Alyssa Smart. It was a wonderful trip, time to get away, celebrate the wedding and reception, and enjoy ourselves.
I have done enough family history that I knew my 4th Great Grandmother is buried in Spring City. Like other locations, if I am in Sanpete County, I make an effort to stop and visit her grave. I think the last time I was able to stop was about 2003, so it had been about 15 years.
Here is how we are related.
My mother’s name is Sandra Jonas.
Her father was Wilburn Norwood Jonas (1924 – 1975).
His father was Joseph Nelson Jonas (1893 – 1932).
His mother was Annetta Josephine Nelson (she went by Annie) (1864 – 1907).
Her mother was Agnetta Benson (she went by Annie) (anglicized from Bengtsson) (1832 – 1873).
Her mother was Johanna Johansdotter (which shows up on the tombstone as Johansson) (1813 – 1897), who was married to Nils Benson (anglicized from Bengtsson).
I really don’t know tons about Johanna. Nels August Nelson makes only passing reference to his grandmother. I have been unable to find when she immigrated to the United States.
Johanna Johansdotter was born 15 February 1813 in Öringe, Veinge, Halland, Sweden. She met and married Nils Bengtsson on 4 July 1830 in Veinge, Halland, Sweden. Nils was born 1 August 1802 in Brunskog, Tönnersjö, Halland, Sweden. Together they had 8 children together.
Agnetta Nilsdotter born 9 Dec 1832.
Lars Nilsson born 11 May 1835.
Ingjard Nilsdotter born 17 February 1839.
Christina Nilsdotter born 21 June 1841.
Bengta Nilsdotter born 19 March 1843.
Nils (Nels) Nilsson born 23 August 1846.
Borta Nilsdotter born 6 April 1849.
Johan Petter Nilsson born 31 August 1855.
Nils passed away 12 March 1859.
Johanna was baptized a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on 11 May 1861. Agnetta was baptized 10 November 1863, Lars 5 May 1860, Ingjard 5 May 1861, Christina 4 February 1866, and Nils Jr 5 May 1860. Johann joined 7 September 1893 after immigration to Utah. The other two were after their deaths. Bengta and Borta did not join or immigrate to Utah.
Johanna’s daughter Agnetta (Annie) traveled with her husband Johan Nilsson from Halmstadt, Sweden through Liverpool, England docking in New York City, New York on 3 June 1864. I cannot tell that Johanna traveled with Johan and Agnetta.
Most of the children upon traveling to the United States were given the last name of Benson instead of Nilsson.
The children spread. Agnetta went with her husband to Logan, Utah. Lars went with his family to what is now Sandy, Utah. Ingjard to what is now Sandy. Christina to Vernon, Utah. Nils to Spring City, Utah. John also to Sandy. For whatever reason Johanna went with Nils to Spring City and remained there the rest of her days. She passed away May 1897, we do not have an exact date. Nils served a mission from 1892 to 1894 back to the Scandinavia mission.
An interesting tidbit about our trip to Manti. We stayed in a restored home of James Marks Works. He was the brother-in-law to Brigham Young. It was an early home with various additions, modifications, and ultimate restoration. James Marks Works and Phebe Jones had a daughter named Mary Ann Angel Works. Mary Ann is the second wife to Nils Benson and they had 9 children together. The home in Manti we stayed may very well have been visited by my 3rd Great Grand Uncle and his 9 children, all of which were grandchildren of James Marks Works. James Marks Works died in 1889 and the first of the 9 children were born in 1892, but James’ son James Marks Works (Jr) kept the home and continued working the sawmill behind the home.
Here is a picture of the Manti Temple from James Marks Works’ home.
Another interesting side note that I remembered from the last time I walked around the Spring City Cemetery. Orson Hyde is also buried there. I walked the kids over to Elder Hyde’s grave and we snapped a picture there as well. I explained his role as an Apostle, President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, Dedication of Palestine for the return of the Jews, clerk to Joseph Smith, lawyer, Justice on Utah Supreme Court. The kids didn’t seem to care much…
Here is Orson’s short biography from the Joseph Smith papers.
8 Jan. 1805 – 28 Nov. 1878. Laborer, clerk, storekeeper, teacher, editor, businessman, lawyer, judge. Born at Oxford, New Haven Co., Connecticut. Son of Nathan Hyde and Sally Thorpe. Moved to Derby, New Haven Co., 1812. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, 1819. Joined Methodist church, ca. 1827. Later affiliated with reformed Baptists (later Disciples of Christ or Campbellites). Baptized into LDS church by Sidney Rigdon and ordained an elder by JS and Sidney Rigdon, Oct. 1831, at Kirtland. Ordained a high priest by Oliver Cowdery, 26 Oct. 1831. Appointed to serve mission to Ohio, Nov. 1831, in Orange, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio. Baptized many during proselytizing mission with Samuel H. Smith to eastern U.S., 1832. Attended organizational meeting of School of the Prophets, 22–23 Jan. 1833, in Kirtland. Appointed clerk to church presidency, 1833. Appointed to serve mission to Jackson Co., Missouri, summer 1833. Served mission to Pennsylvania and New York, winter and spring 1834. Member of Kirtland high council, 1834. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri, 1834. Married to Marinda Nancy Johnson by Sidney Rigdon, 4 Sept. 1834, at Kirtland. Ordained member of Quorum of the Twelve by Oliver Cowdery, David Whitmer, and Martin Harris, 15 Feb. 1835, in Kirtland. Served mission to western New York and Upper Canada, 1836. Served mission to England with Heber C. Kimball, 1837–1838. Moved to Far West, Caldwell Co., Missouri, summer 1838. Sided with dissenters against JS, 1838. Lived in Missouri, winter 1838–1839. Removed from Quorum of the Twelve, 4 May 1839. Restored to Quorum of the Twelve, 27 June 1839, at Commerce (later Nauvoo), Hancock Co., Illinois. Served mission to Palestine to dedicate land for gathering of the Jews, 1840–1842. Member of Nauvoo Masonic Lodge, 1842. Member of Nauvoo City Council, 1843–1845. Admitted to Council of Fifty, 13 Mar. 1844. Presented petition from JS to U.S. Congress, 1844. Participated in plural marriage during JS’s lifetime. Departed Nauvoo during exodus to the West, mid-May 1846. Served mission to Great Britain, 1846–1847. Presided over Latter-day Saints in Iowa before migrating to Utah Territory. Appointed president of Quorum of the Twelve, 1847. Published Frontier Guardian at Kanesville (later Council Bluffs), Pottawattamie Co., Iowa, 1849–1852. Appointed to preside over church east of Rocky Mountains, 20 Apr. 1851, at Kanesville. Migrated to Utah Territory, 1852. Appointed associate judge of U.S. Supreme Court for Utah Territory, 1852. Elected to Utah territorial legislature, 27 Nov. 1852, 1858. Presided over church in Carson Co., Utah Territory (later the Nevada Territory), 1855–1856. Served colonizing mission to Sanpete Co., Utah Territory, by 1860; presided as ecclesiastical authority there, beginning 1860. Died at Spring City, Sanpete Co.
Here is the last page (of three) given to me from Gib & Janet Richardson of my Grandfather, Norwood Jonas. This picture resembles much the Del Monte plant in Burley, Idaho as I remember it as a kid. My Grandma and I would go and drop things off from time to time. I don’t remember what we dropped off, but we were there on a fairly regular basis. I do not remember the plan having changed much at that time from 1969 to my memories in the mid 1980’s.
I remember as a boy my Mom would often remind me as we drove past Del Monte that my Grandfather helped build that water tower. I don’t know how much he actually helped build it, but since he worked in maintenance I assumed he helped with its maintenance. Who knows. Too much time has probably passed to know for certain. I tried locating information on the rest of the people in the pictures. Many are likely still alive. I tried searching names but none were an obvious match. I will have to do more work to pin some of them down.
Jack Wilson Woolley, 18 Jan 1919 in Portland, Multnomah, Oregon to 28 Jun 1973 in Ogden, Weber, Utah.
Ron Peters (? – ?)
Wilburn Norwood Jonas, 15 May 1924 in Richmond, Cache, Utah to 14 Mar 1975 in Burley, Cassia, Idaho.
Patrick Mellott (? – ?)
Jon Reinhold Sadler, 4 April 1940 in Nevada to 6 November 1978 in Roy, Weber, Utah.
Earl Moser (? – ?)
Sheldon Rawlings, 9 Mar 1927 in Fairview, Franklin, Idaho to 8 Feb 1993 in Bountiful, Davis, Utah.
Paul Wood (? – ?)
David Carter (? – ?)
Brent Chugg (? – ?)
Betty May Oram Donaldson, 83, passed away peacefully surrounded by many dear friends on November 13, 2014. She was born November 5, 1931 to Gloyd Hyrum Oram and Rosabelle Grant Oram in Ogden, Utah.
She attended schools in Honeyville and Ogden. She met and married David William Donaldson on April 12, 1953 (in Las Vegas) and their marriage was later solemnized in the Ogden LDS Temple (2008). They enjoyed traveling, camping and fishing. After 54 years together, David died in 2007.
Betty loved her dogs, cooking, crocheting, listening to books on tape and visiting with friends and family. She worked as a medical record and lab technician. She was a member of the LDS Church Plain City 7th Ward.
She is survived by her sister, Marilyn Keyes of Williamsburg, Virginia, many cousins, nieces and nephews and lots of friends. She will be missed very much.
She was preceded in death by her parents and brother Donald Oram.
A viewing for family and friends will be held on Friday, November 21, 2014 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Myers Ogden Mortuary, 845 Washington Blvd and Saturday from 9 to 10 a.m. at the mortuary. Graveside services will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, November 22, 2014 at the Honeyville Cemetery, 6900 North 2500 West.
We would like to thank the Lotus Park Assisted Living personnel and Intermountain Homecare (especially Vickie, Launi and Misty) for their excellent care of Betty. We are very grateful for the assistance of Betty’s ward family during her last few weeks.
That is her obituary as found in the newspaper with two additions by me (in parenthesis). I thought I would add a couple more side notes.
I have mentioned Betty and Dave in the history for Dave’s parents found at this link.
I am not sure the reasons, but it sounds like Betty was pretty much raised by her grandparents, Jedediah Mill Grant and Annie Kaziah Bowcutt. Interestingly, Annie’s brother, Lorenzo, married my great grandmother Lillian Coley Jonas years after my great grandfather had passed away. Betty had some interesting stories about Ren as he was known. You can see pictures of Ren and his obituary at the link for Lillian. She adored her Grandmother Annie Bowcutt Grant. As I mentioned, I did not think to ask why, but she never told me much about her parents. But she told me loads about her grandparents. She even gave me a number of photos to scan of them, which I will likely post next week.
I liked to go and visit Aunt Betty. Since she lived next to Grandpa and Grandma it was easy and convenient to go. Sometimes though after spending a few hours with Grandpa and Grandma I wanted to get on the road but Grandpa would send me to Betty’s with something to give her and Dave (when he was still alive). Grandma would even walk over with me sometimes.
I thought I would write on my Great Grandfather’s brother in anticipation of his birthday, he would be 125 this year. Growing up, I never knew of Uncle John Nelson Jonas likely because nobody in my family ever knew him. He passed away at the ripe age of 30 in 1918, a victim of Influenza. The family knew of his widow as she lived on Main Street in Richmond, Cache, Utah and associated with their children. Since I have some pictures of his family, I thought I would make them available. My Great Grandfather Joseph Nelson Jonas did not live to be much older and so personal memories of him were lost many decades ago as well.
John Nelson Jonas was the fourth of seven children born in the marriage of Annetta Josephine Nelson and Joseph Jonas 14 August 1888 in or near Ellensburg, Kittitas, Washington. He was christened 10 September 1888 at St. Andrews in Ellensburg. About 1896, John’s mother, Annie, went to the Eastern Washington Hospital for the Insane in Fancher, Spokane, Washington (she is listed as Ann J Jonas). She was in and out of hospitals throughout her life but as John was one of the older children, he would have known his mother a little better.
Annie got out of the Eastern Washington Hospital 31 October 1899 and went home to Ellensburg and continued to be a handful for the family. The family on the 1900 Census was in Cle Elum, Kittitias, Washington. Although that census does not include Annie and the census that year has Joseph Sr in both Cle Elum and Spokane about two weeks apart in June 1900. Annie must have been back in Fancher. Annie’s sister, Charlotte, visited in 1901. Due to Annie’s mental and emotional state, and with Joseph’s approval, the Jonas family went to Utah to stay temporarily with Annie’s brother, Nels August Nelson. Uncle August lived in Crescent, Salt Lake, Utah and the Jonas party arrived 3 July 1901 from Washington.
Joseph for one reason or another went back to Washington with the oldest child Margaret. Nels suggested it was legal issues; it might have just been the farm that needed attention. Annie’s issues were such that Nels and his wife, Fidelia, signed an affidavit of insanity and had her admitted to the Utah State Hospital 1 November 1901.
Joseph had been raised as a Catholic and Annie Nelson had been raised LDS. Annie decided she did not like LDS men and wanted to marry a Gentile and did so. The children were raised Catholic in Washington. Now in Utah, Uncle August made sure the children learned about the LDS faith. The three boys, John, William, and Joseph, elected to be baptized LDS on 10 January 1902 in Crescent by their Uncle August in an ice-covered Jordan River. All three were confirmed 12 January 1902 by Jaime P Jensen. Rosa joined 6 February 1902, also in Crescent under the hand of Uncle August in a hole chipped in the Jordan River. Margaret did not join as she stayed near her father in Washington.
In 1904, Rosa married a boy, Christian Andersen, from Richmond. They married in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, Utah. They moved to 137 E 100 S in Richmond. John and his brothers resided with Uncle August until after their mother passed in 1907, then they would regularly and for prolonged periods stay with Rosa in Richmond. William and John were both ordained Elders 6 January 1908 in Crescent. In Richmond, both were again ordained Seventies 19 September 1909 by Charles Hart (1866 – 1934, 1st Council of Seventy). John was endowed in the Logan LDS Temple 1 October 1909 and left to serve in the Southern States Mission. He left 10 October 1909, arrived at Chattanooga, Hamilton, Tennessee 18 Oct, Montgomery, Montgomery, Alabama 21 Oct, and formally starting 25 October 1909. The 1910 Census lists John at home in Crescent.
I understand John attended Brigham Young College in Logan but I don’t know any of the details of when or if he graduated. Nellie told her nephew, Ellis Jonas, that John was the only one of the brothers who could keep a level head. Just remember the source of that compliment – his wife.
John met Nellie Armina Andersen, a cousin of Rosa’s husband Christian, while staying in Richmond. Nellie and John fell in love and were married 5 June 1912 in the Logan, Cache, Utah at the LDS Temple.
The above photo indicates it was taken in Salt Lake City at Cusworth’s Studio. We don’t know the occasion, but it must have been something to dress up for, or just a sitting for a portrait. Either way, the photo was shared with my Great Grandmother.
The wedding announcement in the Logan Republican on 25 June 1925, “On June 5th Mr. John Jonas and Miss Nellie Anderson of this place were married in the Logan Temple. Mr. Jonas is managing his Uncle’s farm at Murray, Utah. After a family reception at the home of the bride’s mother, Mrs. Armina Anderson, the couple departed for Murray where they will make their future home.”
John and Nellie had three children.
Calvin Andersen Jonas born 6 August 1913 and died 17 June 1991 both in Richmond. He married Viola Florence Chapman (1921 – 2006) on 30 March 1957 in Elko, Elko, Nevada. Calvin lived in his mother’s home until he passed away and then Viola remained in the same home until her passing. It was Calvin who took the land and created a trailer park on the rest of the property to the welcome or chagrin of Richmond. Calvin and Viola did not have any children, although Viola brought children to the marriage from her previous marriage. I last visited Viola about 2005 and Viola had her daughter Dixie living with her to take care of her, the trailer park, and their ceramic store.
Melvin Andersen Jonas born 13 March 1917 in Richmond and drowned 16 Jul 1944 in San Marcos, Hays, Texas while he was in training at San Marcos Army Air Field. Apparently he had just married Doris Everts on 17 March 1944 somewhere in Texas. It is not believed they had any children. Melvin was a lieutenant in the Army.
John and Nellie purchased a home 3 April 1917 on the corner of Main and 200 E in Richmond (now 195 E Main). The entire lot one, block 25 of Richmond City came with the home for $1,200.00. They moved in when Melvin was only a few days old. When John registered for the World War I Draft, he indicated he was a laborer at Utah Condensed Milk Company in Richmond.
I have included a copy of the full Draft Registration. It is interesting to note John’s signature on the first page.
Nellie became pregnant and while with their third children tragedy struck. John caught the spreading Influenza virus in the epidemic of 1918 and passed away shortly before Christmas on 19 December 1918 at home in Richmond. Nellie gave birth to their last child months later.
Our cousin, Carvel Jonas wrote of John’s death, “‘Prior to 1974, 38 major flu outbreaks had been recorded, including the disastrous pandemic in 1918 which attached an estimated 500 million people, leaving 20 million dead,’ according to Science Digest March 1975. The severity of the 1918 pandemic was due to the fact that it lasted for more than 14 months; ordinary epidemics in the average community last no more than six weeks before running their course,’ quoted from ‘The Encyclopedia of Common Diseases, p 722; by the Staff of Prevention Magazine, co 1976’. Unfortunately John was one of the estimated 20 million who died.”
Carvel also writes, “Before John died he would play hide and seek with his two boys. After John died the boys thought that their father was still playing the game and would try to find him when Nellie would come home.”
His obituary in the Deseret News stated, “Funeral of John Jonas. Richmond, Dec 30 – Funeral services were held Sunday for John Jonas who died of Pneumonia, following influenza. Mrs. A. A. Thomas and W.J. Thomas of Salt Lake furnished music. The speakers were Bishop P.N. Nelson, Bishop J.L. McCarrey, and A.S. Schow. The deceased is survived by a wife and two small children and several brothers and sisters. The flu conditions have so well improved that the local health board has permitted the opening of places of amusement.”
Armina Andersen Jonas was born 5 March 1919 in Richmond and died 30 March 2011 in St. George, Washington, Utah. She married Don Farnes (1916 – 1978) 10 March 1937 in Logan. Don was gone by the time I was born, but I remember stopping to visit Armina at her home in Kimberly, Twin Falls, Idaho with my Grandma in the late 1980’s. I stopped the last time in Kimberly about 2008 shortly before she moved to live with her daughter in Southern Utah.
Nellie remarried to Arnold Thornley (1893 – 1969) on 14 April 1926 in Logan. It must not have been a very long marriage as very few seemed to remember him.
Nellie continued to live in their home until she passed away 11 December 1953 in Salt Lake City of myocarditis.
Her obituary stated, “Nellie A. Jonas – Richmond, Cache County – Mrs. Nellie Andersen Jonas, 64, died Friday night in a Salt Lake hospital after an operation. Born July 26, 1889 at Richmond, daughter of George and Armina Carson Andersen. Resident in Richmond entire life. Married to John N. Jonas in 1912, in Logan L.D.S. Temple. He died in 1918. Active in L.D.S. Church…” I need to get a copy of the full obituary to share it.
John and Nellie are buried together in the Richmond Cemetery. All three children are buried within a stone’s throw. John’s father and Nellie’s parents are also a stone’s throw away.
This is from the autobiography of Ivan Stephen Coley. I recently wrote on the passing of his widow, Clara McMurdie Coley.
Since Ivan does not give much background information, I will provide some. Ivan is the sister to my Lillian Coley Jonas. Ivan is the sixth of ten children born to Martha Christiansen and Herbert Coley born 26 June 1912 in Richmond, Cache, Utah. He married Clara McMurdie on 22 October 1930 in Buhl, Twin Falls, Idaho. Ivan and Clara had four children. Ivan passed away 22 September 1994 in Buhl. He was buried 27 September 1994 in West End Cemetery near Buhl. Clara just joined him this year.
I was born in the little town of Richmond, Utah in Cache Valley. We lived up in the foothills called Nebo, about 3 1/2 miles from town. It was really pretty up there. You could see all over the valley.
The snow really got deep in the wintertime. In the spring when the snow melted, the field flowers would come up. It sure was pretty.
I was one of ten children with four sisters and five brothers. We didn’t have a car so we had to hitch the horses up to the white-top buggy when we went to church. In the winter we used the bobsleds. Sometimes the show would be so deep that you didn’t know where the road was. Sometimes I would ride skis or hand sleigh to school in the winter. We had to pack our lunches because they didn’t have hot school lunches then.
I remember in the first grade, we had a pot bellied stove and the teacher would have to keep putting coal in it to keep the room warm. The toilets were outside.
I would help the neighbor do chores and feed calves and help take the milk to the creamery. Once in a while they would give me ten or fifteen cents spending money.
My dad had an old buckboard and he said he wanted to get it over to the house. One day when my parents weren’t home, I decided to hook the horse up to the buckboard and pull it over to the house for my dad. It didn’t have any shavs to guide it so I just put a chain on it to get it to the house. I was doing okay until the wheel hit a rock and the other wheel hit the horse in the belly. The horse got scared and ran away and I fell off the buckboard. It tore out about 100 yards of fence. When I got up, the horse was down by the haystack eating hay. I was afraid to tell my dad about it for fear that I would get my butt kicked because he had told me not to do it.
Dad finally bought a house close to town so it would be easier for us kids to get to school in the winter. One day they left me and my older brother Wilford home alone. He was frying sausage and I was standing with my back to the stove trying to keep warm. He stuck the hot fork that he was frying the meat with on the back of neck. I got warm in one spot and you could see the mark of the fork tines in my neck.
I was sick a lot when I was young. The doctors said that I had liver trouble. I was ruptured and had to wear a truss for seven years. I finally got to where I didn’t have to wear it anymore.
I didn’t know what a long pair of dress pants were until I was about thirteen. We wore levis or kickerbockers pants that came just below the knees and buttoned. I also wore long black socks that came up to the knees.
At Christmas we didn’t get things like they do now. We would get a little wagon and it had to be for all of us. Our gifts were mostly clothes. We may get an orange, some hardtack and sugar candy and that was a treat for us.
Mother would take the eggs to town in a milk bucket and trade them for groceries. We didn’t know what hand soap and shampoo were then as we just used the old laundry soap and mother made most of it. About once a week we would get a little butter for our bread. We used mostly fryings from the bacon and dipped our bread or biscuits into it. It was really good. About the only time we would get cake or pie was on a holiday or birthday. We didn’t get both cake and pie together and we only got one piece when we did get it.
I used to ride about eight miles to Lewiston with my dad to take a wagon load of wheat to the mill to have it ground for flour and cereal. We brought the bran home for the hogs every fall for our winter supply as we couldn’t go to town every day like they do now. We would get snowed in sometimes and couldn’t get to town for several days. Then we would have to go through the fields as the roads would be drifted full.
We didn’t have a telephone. The only ones that had a phone were the rich people. The phones then had a little crank on the side of them and you had to crank it before you could get the operator.
I worked for Melvin Smith in Richmond milking cows and plowing for $5.00 a month. There was one time I was plowing and the horses took off for the barn. I couldn’t get the plow out of the ground. I must have plowed a furrow about 1/4 mile long. The horses didn’t stop until they got to the barn. I went to unhitch them from the plow and one horse kicked me in the leg. It made me mad and I was going to quit but I was afraid to tell the boss so I worked a little longer. I was only about 23 or 13 years old at the time.
On the days we had to spare, some of the neighbors would get together and round up some of the cattle. We would put them in a corral and have a rodeo. I rode the first one and we put a surcingle on him. The bigger boys put me on him and turned me loose. He sure did some bucking, but I stayed on. They passed a hat around and got about 25 or 30 cents and they gave it to me. I sure was ticked to death to get it.
I didn’t go to school very much. My folks would send me and I would play hookey. I would go anywhere but to school. Now I can see where I made a mistake as I hurt no one but myself.
My uncle was blind. I would lead him from door to door selling church books for several days and he gave me 15 cents.
I never did get to go to the circus. I would ride the streetcar to Logan once in a while though and see a show. It cost 10 cents to ride the streetcar and 10 cents to see the show. You didn’t get popcorn or candy to eat in the theater then.
My brother and I were sleeping on the porch and the dog started barking in the middle of the night. I raised up in bed and saw a man coming up toward the house. I reached over and got the gun and fired a shot. It hit the drain pip on the side of the house. My brother-in-law came running out of the house to see what the shooting was all about. Whoever it was took off and never came back. It sure scared me.
One time one of my friends and I rode a horse to Franklin, Idaho. That was about 10 miles from where we lived. This was in the middle of the winter and we had gone to check on some cattle. It was sure cold (about 20 degrees below zero). I rode back in the middle of the night. I came to the neighbors who had a sheep wagon. I went inside and there was a little wood in it. I built a fire and laid down on the bed springs. There was no bedding because they had taken it out for the winter. I nearly froze to death. I sure was glad to see morning come. The neighbor took me to his house and gave me breakfast because I hadn’t had anything to eat since dinner the day before.
The first time I ever tasted corn flakes was up to the neighbors. They put sugar and real straight cream on it. I thought I would founder as I had tasted nothing like that before. We didn’t know what prepared cereal was in those days and we called it mush.
I remember one time my dad made some elderberry wine and put it up in the attic in the house. Every once in a while you would hear one go “BANG” as it blew up. One time we had an old man over for supper. He was an old man with long whiskers who we called “Grandpa Andrews”. Dad went up in the attic to get a bottle of wine. He went to open the bottle and it blew the cork out and hit the ceiling and Grandpa Andrews’ whiskers. It sure went off with a bang. One of the kids ran outside hollering “Grandpa got shot!” I sure did laugh. They got another bottle and one held it while the other tried to open it and it blew the pitcher out of their hand. I don’t think anyone got wine that night.
When I wasn’t very old, I remember my dad and I went to thin beets to buy a bull. I had a dog called “Bob” once and we used to hook him to the hand sleigh and haul the milk to the neighbor’s house about two blocks away as Bob pulled the sleigh. Wherever I went the dog was with me. The neighbor gave me a calf that broke his leg and I killed it and used it for coyote bait. I poisoned some of it. I thought the dog was home but he must have followed me. He got some of the poison and it killed him.
I used to go out at night and sit on the haystack in the winter and shoot those big mountain hare rabbits with a shotgun. I would sell them for 5 cents apiece. Sometimes I would get for and five a shot as the rabbits were so thick they would undermine the haystacks.
We had homemade skis. They were about 5 inches wide. All they had to hold them on your feet were a 3/4 inch strap to go over the foot and a broomstick split and nailed on the skis to go under the arch. They turned the toes up on the skis by driving a nail in them and using a wife, twisting it and steaming the skis. They way I learned to ride the skis was to straddle a long stick and have it drag behind me. It worked really good. If you wanted to slow down, yo would pull upon the front of the stick and sit down real hard on it. It would dig in the snow and slow you down. After we learned to ride good, we didn’t hold on to anything.
When I was a kid there were very few deer and elk because people killed them for their hides. I can remember when they brought some elk, 4 cows, and a bull on a boxcar and turned them loose in the hills. They closed the season on them. You couldn’t hunt for several years. Then they got so thick that they would come down and eat the farmers’ haystacks at night.
My sister, her husband, and her husband’s family moved to Buhl, Idaho in the fall and the next summer I went to Franklin, Idaho to get a job on the highway. They said they didn’t hire kids. “I was 16 at the time.” A friend of mine and I decided to keep going the rest of the way to Buhl. We hitch-hiked all the way! We got off on the wrong road and ended up in Blackfoot so we had to go back to Pocatello. I didn’t have any money and my friend had 11 cents. A sheepherder picked us up and we slept on the desert that night. He took us to Pocatello and bought us some breakfast, which sure tasted good. He got us on the right road for Buhl. We would get a ride for a few miles, then we would have to walk again. All we had to eat were a few apricots. We finally made it after 2 or 3 days.
I sure was glad to get a job sorting some spuds. They had a mule to pull the sorter. The people would pick the spuds and dump them on the sorter and I would sort them. They sorter didn’t have any wheels under it, it just had runners. After we got the spuds all sorted out, they didn’t have any money to pay me. They said that we could have spuds for pay. We took the car out and got several sacks of spuds. I gave them to my future in-laws as I was living with them at this time.
I later got a job working for a man in Castleford for $15 a month as they would only pay a kid half a man’s wages. I would have to get up and help do chores and be out in the field by 7 o’clock a.m. and work until 6 o’clock that night. Once a week I would go to Buhl and take the whole family to a show. They had family ight once a week at that time. The whole family could go to the show for 50 cents. They all looked forward to this. A bull killed the man I worked for that summer.
I quit Claude Browns, went back to Utah, and stayed there until spring. Then I came back to Buhl and started to work for Roy Fait. I helped them tear the old livery stable down. The West One Bank is located there now. I helped them put a miniature golf course in there. I mixed the green for it from sand, sawdust, and feathers. I can’t remember what we used to make it green. Then we had to use a heavy roller to smooth it down. This is when I bought my first car, a 1922 Overland.
Rulon McMurdie and I went to the Shoshone Basin one day to hunt sage hens and on the way up my car quit so we pushed it to the side of the road. A day or two later we went back to get it and someone had pushed it down an embankment about 100 feet and we had to drive it down the canyon to get it out. I drove it back to Buhl and took it to a guy to have it fixed. He charged me $125 dollars and I couldn’t pay him so I just gave him the car.
Rulon and I were working for a guy milking cows. When we turned them out of the barn, we would grab them by the tail, pull it over their back, grab a hand full of hide on their neck, jump on their backs, and ride them out of the barn. They sure would buck. We had a lot of fun until one stepped on my leg and I thought for sure she broke it. That ended the riding of milk cows.
We were down fishing in the Salmon Canyon and my little dog was lying down just a little way from me. I heard a noise and turned around and there was a rattle snake. It had bitten my dog and a little while later he died. It didn’t take me long to get out of there. It sure did scare me.
Rulon and I went duck hunting and a man came out to tell us to get out of there. We asked him who he thought he was talking to. He said, “Who are you?” and I said, “I am the Game Warden.” He left us alone and we went on hunting. We would also stop cars for one light being out and tell them they had better get it fixed. I made a badge out of a piece of tin. They didn’t argue with me. I guess they thought I was a Traffic Cop.
Rulon and I went trapping for muskrats on Deep Creek. There was a boat there and I got in it to go to the other side. I got almost in the middle of the creek and the boat tipped over with me in it. I thought for sure I was going to drown because I had a sheep skin coat and a pair of hip boots on. Rulon just sat on the bank laughing at me. I finally got out and thought I would freez to death because it was snowing and blowing. We couldn’t even make a fire because there wasn’t anything to burn so we got in Rulon’s old Model-T Ford with no top on it and drove home. I was sure glad to get to a warm house.
We were coming home one evening and there was a truck load of apples ahead of us. I got the lariat rope and got on the front of the car. I was going to lariat a box of them and just as I got close enough to throw, they turned the corner into Buhl so we didn’t get any apples.
Every time we would go down the road passed this man’s house, a mean dog would come out after us. I told Rulon the next time he came out after us, I would shoot him and sure enough, he came out after us and I shot and killed him. That night the sheriff came and said he wanted to talk to us. He took us up to the City Hall. The guy was there that owned the dog. We knew then that we were in trouble. He said I shot the dog and hit his boy and I called him a damn liar. The sheriff said, “none of that” and he got me by the shoulder and locked us both up in jail all night. We didn’t have anything to eat all that night and the next morning. Rulon’s mother and sister, Carrie, brought us something to eat. We sure were glad to see them. They let us out that afternoon. That really taught us a lesson to be good as we didn’t want to go to jail again. They just had the old iron beds and we didn’t have any blankets. That learned us to be good kids as I thought if that is the way jails were, we didn’t want any part of them.
The government wanted me, and friend of mine, and some other men to round up wild horses, and drive them from Bliss, Idaho to Elko, Nevada. They corralled them there and shipped them out on a train. I don’t know now where to, but we didn’t go because this man’s wife didn’t want him to go. They said we wouldn’t be riding the same horse when we got there as we did when we left.
I started dating Clara McMurdie when I worked at the golf course. We had known each other in grade school in Richmond, Utah. My sister, Carrie, married her brother, Lorus. They moved to Buhl, Idaho and that’s why I came to Buhl. I stayed in Buhl for a while and then went back to Richmond. I wrote to Buhl to ask Clara’s folks if we could get married. I thought if they said no, I was far enough away from them that they couldn’t shoot me. “Ha, ha!” But they did say yes so my dad, my mother, and I went to Buhl and we got married at her parent’s home. They next morning we went back to Richmond to live.
I worked on my dad’s ranch for 2 years. I packed groceries back in the mountains to my brother and brother-in-law on pack horses as they were up there getting wood out. We would put two drags of wood that we pulled on 2 horses and we hooked one drag behind the other so the other would hold it back going down the mountain. It just took one horse to drag it down the hill then we would get the bobsled and take it the rest of the way home.
I used to drive a covered school wagon in the winter. It was a covered bobsleigh with a hole big enough to put the lines through to drive it and a little window to see through. I got a dollar a day for driving it. We had to furnish the horses, bobsleigh, and wagon.
We lived with my folks in one small room of their house. That spring, we moved into a place closer to town. We only stayed there a little over a month because we couldn’t afford the rent (it was $5.00). So we moved back with my folks again. That fall, we moved into a little 2-room log house. It cost us 6 dollars a month. It got so cold we couldn’t keep the rooms warm so we moved our bedspring and mattress out onto the kitchen floor. We nearly froze to death. You could see through the cracks in the logs. We only stayed there 1 week and we moved back with my folks again. We tried to get them to give us back some of our rent money and they wouldn’t do it.
In the spring, our oldest daughter (Sarah Colleen) was born in the same house and same room that I was born in. We had to go and get the doctor in a white top buggy as the roads were too muddy. They wouldn’t get there in a car.
That fall, I threshed the grain and got 50 dollars for my share. I also topped beets and made 35 dollars. This is when we moved to Buhl, Idaho. My brother-in-law, Lorus McMurdie, came down with his car and got us as we didn’t have a car. We moved in with my wife’s folks. They lived in an old hotel on 8th street.
Lorus and I took two teams of horses and wagons and drove them up in the Shoshone Basin and cut wood. All we took with us to eat was spuds, bread, onions, fruit, and bacon. The spuds froze. We had to scoop the snow off the ground to put our quilts on the ground to sleep because we didn’t have a sleeping bag or tent. We would get cold, so we walked alongside the wagon and drove the horses. One of our loads of wood slipped off the side of the road. We camped there that night and reloaded the wagon the next morning. It was so cold, the edge of our quilt froze to the ground. We were supposed to get 3 dollars a cord for the wood (split and cut). He never did pay us.
I went to work for Jess Eastman. We walked to work and back. I had to be there at 7 o’clock in the morning and work until 7 o’clock at night. It was four miles down there and four miles back. If we were lucky, we would get a ride once and a while. We had to take our own lunch. Once in a while after I got home, I would go back to work at Shields warehouse shoveling clover seed in bins until 10 o’clock or midnight and be ready for work again at 7 o’clock the next morning.
We lived with my wife’s folks in that old hotel. The next spring we moved down closer to our work. One night I came home and there were a bundh of people there and I couldn’t figure out why. I soon found they had a strawberry roan horse for me to break and ride. They said if I could ride it they would buy me a new cowboy hat. I put the saddle on it and snubbed it up to another horse. I climbed on her and they turned her loose. The first jump she made, my hat flew off and she tore every button off my shirt. She sure did some bucking and bawling. You could hear her for a half mile. She headed for a rock fence and Lorus, my brother-in-law, was on his horse. He tried to keep her away from the rock fence and his stirrup on the saddle broke and he fell off. When the horse got to the rock fence she turned and quit bucking. I rode her every day for three weeks and every time I got on her she wanted to buck. I won my new hat, but I sure did earn it! I bought a fat cow for 10 dollars and butchered her. We didn’t have a deep freezer at that time so we hung the meat outside and hoped it stayed frozen. Some of it thawed out and froze again and boy did we get a belly ache. We sure did run races for the outhouse (ha, ha!).
We didn’t have electricity or telephones. I finally got enough money to buy a Model T Ford for 25 dollars and we didn’t have to walk so much anymore. We finally moved ourselves down to Jess Eastman’s and I worked for him for 3 years. He didn’t have the money to hire us any longer, so we got me a job uptown sorting spuds for 15 cents an hour. We would go at 7 o’clock a.m and sometimes work until midnight nearly every night. We finally bought the old shack we were living in for 50 dollars and moved it on a lot on 8th Street in Buhl. It cost us 15 dollars to have it moved. It was the first house on lower 8th Street in Buhl at that time. The house was 2 rooms and the walls were plastered with mud and straw. We took cheesecloth and old rags and pasted on the walls then we wallpapered over that and made it real cute. We had orange crates nailed on the walls for cupboards. We bought the lot next to us for 25 dollars. We just lived there a short time. Our son, “Bud” Lorus, was born.
Then we moved to Castleford and I farmed for a guy for 30 dollars a month. He hired 2 other men to help me farm it. He paid one 15 dollars and the other 10 dollars a month and we had to board and feed them. He gave us a table and chairs for their board. We still have their chairs. We started breaking horses and we hitched them up to the wagon one time and they ran away. The lane they ran down wasn’t wide enough for the wagon as it was just a cow lane. They tore the wagon all to pieces and all they had left when they stopped was the tongue and front wheels.
We stayed here for about a year and a half and then we moved and worked for another man for about a year. He made me mad as he didn’t keep his promise to give me a couple of heifers. I was bunching clover with a pitchfork and he came and told me he couldn’t give them to me. He promised me that spring that if I would stay with him, he would give them to me as a bonus and that fall he backed out on his deal. I told him I was going to quit and he said I couldn’t. So I showed him I could and left the pitchfork in the field and walked out on him.
The next day we went to Utah and saw my folks. When we came back we moved again to Melon Valley (known as Little Country Club). We only stayed there a short time until spring. I would walk to town (about 4 miles) to sort spuds as we couldn’t afford to drive the car. Sometimes we would stay all day waiting to work and they would come tell us that we wouldn’t be working that day and to come back tomorrow.
It was cold and I was going to drive the car that morning. I couldn’t afford alcohol at that time as there wasn’t any anti-freeze in those days, so I put fuel oil in the radiator. It got hot and blew it all out, so I had to put water in it and drain it out when I got to work, then put more in it when I came home and cover the radiator with a blanket to keep it from freezing.
I bought a cow for 30 dollars and had her for a while. Then I traded her for 2 heifers that were going to freshen. I took them to my father-in-law’s and when they freshened, he milked them. Later, I bought another one and let him milk her too for the milk as we had moved to Castleford. I worked for a man out there for 30 dollars a month and he wouldn’t let me keep them. I worked there for about 2 years and then we moved to Melon Valley where we rented a place from Stan Webber.
We got 1300 dollars from FHA and bought some cows, a team of horses, and some machinery to get started with. We didn’t think we would ever pay it back as that seemed like a lot of money to us, but in 2 years, we had it paid off. It was a hard struggle and some of our horses died. One died with colic and one foundered on grain and died. Our cattle kept dying and we couldn’t figure out what was wrong. We finally found out they were eating wild parsnips. Another time we woke up in the night and saw the chicken coop was on fire. WE jumped out of bed and ran to get the neighbors. They came to help us put the fire out, but it was too late. It burned down the coop and one hundred little chicks. We had 6 hens setting outside the coop and they burned right on the nests as the dump things wouldn’t leave their nests. I had just went to town that day and bought one hundred pounds of chick feed and kerosene for the brooder as we didn’t have electricity. I had been sleeping out in the coop in order to watch the brooder so it didn’t get too hot. I decided to sleep in the house that night as they had been getting along so good. It’s a good thing I did or I might have been roasted with the chickens!
We used to go salmon fishing. Sometimes it was a lot of fun when they let us spear them. I went elk, deer, and antelope hunting as it was a lot of fun. We usually got our limit of game. I killed a big brown bear and had a rug made of it and a few years later, I got a little black cub. We had him mounted standing up on a frame.
We rented the ranch for 3 years and decided what money we were giving for rent, we might just as well be buying it. We bought the one hundred sixty acres for 10 thousand dollars. We sure did raise some good beets and potatoes. We used to have good times there. Every Saturday night, there would be a get-together of the valley people. We would take our families and have a dance and potluck. We sure did have fun and the little kids would dance. We wouldn’t have to worry where they were or what they were doing.
Our third child Clarene RaNae was born. After that my health wasn’t very good. I had to have surgery and we had to borrow $8,060 and mortgage everything we had to get the money. We bought a few more cows to milk as we figured that was the only way we could pay the money back. We had a hard struggle but we made it. We farmed and lived on that place for 21 years, then we sold it to our neighbor and moved to town where we are living now.
I got a job for the City where I worked for 8 1/2 years. I got hurt on the job and had to quit as the doctor said I wasn’t able to do any hard work again.
I always tried to go fishing and hunting every year. One time, my father-in-law and I and about 4 others went in the Selway to hunt elk. WE got snowed in for 12 days. The guy that packed the hunters in and out lost 17 head of pack mules over a cliff as they tied one behind the other as they had to follow a narrow trail around the mountain. We asked the guy that lost them if he ever found them again. He said “Yes, everyone of them came home later on”. It was about 70 miles from where he lost them to where he lived. One of the hunters that he had packed in had a heart attack and died while we were there and all we had to get him out of there was my horse and the packers horse. We left camp at 7 o’clock that night and didn’t get him to camp til about 7 o’clock the next morning as the horses had to wade in snow to their bellies. We left him in one of the camps for 2 days until the forest service could get in to get him out.
Another time we went in we rolled my two mules down the mountain. It didn’t hurt them. We got them out again. Another time two other saddle horses rolled down the mountain within about 30 minutes apart. It sure was steep, but we had a good time and would look forward to going back the next year. My father-in-law said I know I should not have came and maybe you would have got your elk and wouldn’t have got snowed in. We just laughed.
The other time, I took my father-in-law fishing and we were in the boats. I cast my line out and didn’t think I case out far enough. When I reeled in, I had a pair of glasses on my hook. I couldn’t figure out where they came from. Dad felt his eyes and his glasses were gone. He said, “How in the devil did that happen? I thought I felt something jerk on my ears”. We sure did have a good laugh out of that. He often talked about it and had a good laugh. I still don’t know how I ever hooked onto them without him knowing it. We sure had some good times together. One other time, we had been up to Galena Summit getting out corral poles. We were coming home and we had a horse in a trailer. A car was trying to pass us and she ran off the side of the road. It looked like she was going to hit a telephone pole. She swerved back onto the road and she it our car on the hind wheel and it threw the horse out of the trailer onto the front of our car. It hurt his back and he couldn’t get up so we had to shoot him.
We used to take our children camping and fishing when they were little. Then came the grandchildren. We used to take them fishing and camping. We sure did enjoy having them with us. Now they are growing up and have their friends and activities. So now we just go alone. We sure do miss them but we still have our memories of the past. Would like to relieve some of the happy ones again.
Had Ivan of lived one more month, we could have celebrated our 64th wedding anniversary as he passed away on the 22nd of September, 1994. Our anniversary was the 22nd of October. He hadn’t been well for a long time as he got to where he couldn’t see to drive a car and was going to the doctor off and on for a year or two. They didn’t seem to know what was wrong with him until it was too late. They found out it was melanoma cancer of the rectum. They operated on him on January 18,1994 and they said they got 99.9 percent of it. They thought they had the worst of it, but he lived just 8 months longer when he passed away.
We bought us a nice self contained trailer house. It had a propane refrigerator in it. It sure was nice, but we didn’t get to enjoy it very much as he didn’t feel like going. We bought it the year before.
The last month, he sure suffered. We sure had a lot of memories behind us. A lot of them were good and a lot of them were bad. We wondered sometimes if we would make it. But I guess that’s the way life is. As they say, we have to have trials to learn to appreciate the good times and we had a lot of good times together. I sure miss them and him. But we still had a lot of good memories.
I am sharing this life sketch of David Davis Williams and Rebecca Price Williams. The original version was written by William Jenkin Williams and found in the records of Eliza Williams Rees with insights from her granddaughter Betty Mifflin Bushman taken from family interviews and her own experience. For the most part I will stick to the original history. I do not have any photos to share, but since I have the history, I wanted to make it available.
Before I jump into the rest of the life sketch, I think it is important to connect these individuals to my family history. I have previously written of the marriage between David D Williams and Gwenllian Jordan. David D Williams had a brother named John Haines Williams. David Davis Williams is the son of John Haines Williams.
I will provide more family information after the life sketch.
“David D. Williams was born in Llanelli, Carmarthenshire, Wales on June 19, 1852, a son of John Haines Williams and Sarah Jane Davis. He came to the United States with his parents, settling first in Pennsylvania in 1858. In 1860 the family moved to Ogden, Utah, crossing the plains with in a handcart company led by Captain Elias Morris. It was the second ox team to land in Ogden. From there the family went north to the Malad Valley where they settled in Muddy Creek, living in a dugout where some of the children were born. They later moved to Gwenford.
“Rebecca P. Williams was born on New Year’s Eve, December 31, 1857, at Merthyr Tydfil, Glamorganshire, Wales, a daughter of Jenkin Williams and Eliza Price. She was baptized (LDS) in Wales on December 11, 1867 by her father, Jenkin, and confirmed by John Thomas. With her parents, she came to this country for the gospel’s sake, settling in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. After living there two years, they went to the Malad Valley in the year 1872.
“On Rebecca’s birthday, December 31, 1877, she and David were married in St. Johns, Oneida, Idaho by Justice of the Peace William H. Waytell in the presence of Benjamin Waldron and Mary Ann Daniels.
“David was baptized (LDS) 8 March 1878 by John Evan Price and confirmed by Samuel D. Williams.
“He and Rebecca took up a farm in Gwenford where they lived for about twenty years. During this time David operated a freighting business between Kelton, Utah and Helena, Montana, a trip that would take him about three months. He served as a deputy sheriff, was the first Chief of Police of Samaria, Idaho, and even worked as a blacksmith. Later he went into the confectionery business and operated a business and general store, D.D. Williams Candy Kitchen, with Rebecca in Samaria until his death June 27, 1927. He was a man, it is said, who could not be idle. His daughter, Eliza, described him as a wonderful husband and father. His granddaughter, Mae Rees Mifflin, remembers him with great fondness also. She named her first child, Darla Dean, after her grandfather. It is a wonder that Darla was not nicknamed Dee Dee too.
“About him, a grandson, Ray Earl Rees, told the following story: Their daughter, Eliza (Ray’s mother), had a washing machine. In order to help her elderly parents, she would do their laundry. Every Monday morning Grandpa David would drive his buggy the few miles to Malad with a bundle of clothes for her to wash. Grandpa would drive the team around to the north road and enter the farmyard by the back way. About the time he was expected, Ray would wait out by the gate to open it for his grandfather. Then he would climb up in the buggy with him and ride up to the house. Always Grandpa Williams had a sack of candy for Ray. He could depend on that treat and waited eagerly for it each Monday morning.
“When the family would visit their grandparents in Samaria, it was a treat to go in to the store and see all the candies on display behind the glass counter. Rather than give the children candy, Grandpa Williams would give them each a nickel and let them do the choosing. They were not allowed to go around the counter, but while he smiled encouragement to them, they would stand before the counter and choose their treat.
“He was the sweetest man who ever drew a breath, Ray said about his grandfather.
“David was always a prominent figure in our childhood stories about family as our mother was said to be his favorite. He even appeared to her to tell her goodbye after his death.
“It seemed so romantic to my sister and me that he and Rebecca married on my favorite holiday of the year, New Year’s Eve. That day was also Rebecca’s twentieth birthday. Her present was our handsome, nice great-grandfather. What a perfect party time to have a wedding anniversary.
“Rebecca is remembered by her daughter, Eliza, as a wonderful mother and homemaker, never being one to go away from home. She had a wonderful alto voice and when the children were small, she would often gather them around and sing to them.
“After her children grew up and married, she helped her husband in keeping the confectionery store. Many remember stopping there as youngsters on their way to Mutual to share a soda and socialize. They were always reminded not to be late for their church meeting by Rebecca, who would usher them out the door at ten minutes ’till. Later the teenagers would reunite there to pick up where they had left off.
“Her daughter, Eliza, described her this way, Rebecca P. Williams was loved by all who knew her. She was kind to everyone and did not have an enemy on earth.
“Great-Grandmother Rebecca was always a colorful figure to my sister and me. As the youngest surviving child in her family of eleven children, we loved the story of how when the family came from Merthyr Tydfil, Wales, she was assigned to carry a beautiful crystal bowl for her mother. With it wrapped in a shawl, fourteen-year-old Rebecca later carefully tended it all the way to Idaho. Through interesting circumstances, that bowl was inherited by our grandmother, then Mama, and finally Darla. Since Darla also inherited Grandma Rees’ beautiful china closet, it seemed quite natural that the Welsh bowl would always rest inside it. At any rate, I never ever expected it to be mine. One day when I was picking up Darla to bring her to my house for a day’s visit, her daughter, Alyce, walked out to the car with us. In her hands, Darla was carrying something wrapped in a piece of fabric. She handed it to me with a smile saying that she had a present for me as a little thank you gift because I was so good to her. With Alyce looking on and smiling too, I turned back the cloth to see the Welsh bowl. Ignoring my protests that it was hers and that I could not accept it, she said she knew it would be safer in my home, that I would take good care of it and always treasure it. Alyce said they had talked it over and both felt that it should be mine. How I love to hold and admire that bowl. Made of clear glass in a square shape, scalloped edging runs along its rim and base. With a small pedestal and lion heads at each square corner, it is truly a work of art and indeed a special item. I love knowing of its history and importance in our family. When we would look at it as children and hear its story, it was always viewed in quiet awe or discussed in hushed tones. Never, ever, did I think it would be mine. I felt amazed, quite honored, and a bit afraid of the responsibility.
“David died on 27 June 1927 after an illness of eight months.
“Later Grandma Rebecca moved to Malad where she resided just across the street from her daughter, Eliza. I remember Grandma carefully preparing a plate of dinner each evening for her mother. It was usually the job of Uncle Ray to deliver it with a caution to hurry so it would be hot for his grandmother. When I was around, he would often grab me by the hand and together we would dance across the street as he deftly carried the napkin covered plate in one hand and dragged me along with the other.
“I remember her as a frail little lady, a bob of white hair on top of her head, wire-rimmed glasses perched on her nose as she looked us over. Books and magazines were plentiful in her small apartment and always a deck of cards. In addition to reading, she liked to play games, playing Solitaire to entertain herself when no one else was around.
“Rebecca died on March 30, 1936 at the age of 84, a few months before my fifth birthday.
“Both are buried in the Samaria Cemetery.
“Thirteen children were born to David and Rebecca, five boys and eight girls: Sarah, William Jenkin who died in infancy, Mary, David, Phoebe, Jenkin, Eliza, Margaret, John, Catharine, Beatrice, Frances Orenda who died as a baby, and George.”
Some more family history information.
David Davis Williams born 19 June 1852 in Llanelli, Carmarthenshire, Wales and died 27 Jun 1927 in Samaria, Oneida, Idaho. He was buried 30 June 1927 in Samaria.
Rebecca Price Williams born 31 December 1857 in Merthyr Tydfil, Glamorganshire, Wales and died 30 March 1936 in Malad, Oneida, Idaho. She was buried 2 April 1936 in Samaria.
David and Rebecca were married 31 December 1877 in St Johns, Oneida, Idaho.
Their children are:
Sarah Elizabeth Williams born 22 August 1878 in Samaria and died 31 February 1968. Buried in Draper, Salt Lake, Utah. She married James Benjamin McGuire (1872-1952) 30 September 1900 in Samaria.
John Jenkin Williams born and died 23 September 1879 in Samaria. Buried in Samaria.
Mary Jane Williams born 10 April 1881 in Samaria and died 14 January 1975. Buried in St Johns. She married John Nelson Hill (1872-1913) 22 February 1899 in St Johns.
David Joseph Williams born 26 February 1883 in Samaria and died 4 April 1973. Buried in Malad. He married Ester “Essie” Katherine Munsee (1888-1967) 25 March 1908 in Ogden.
Phoebe Ann Williams born 12 December 1884 in Samaria and died 15 March 1942 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, Utah. Buried in Riverton, Salt Lake, Utah. She married Thomas Charles Jones (1883-1922) 4 July 1903 in Samaria.
William Jenkin Williams born 24 Jul 1886 in Samaria and died 5 Jun 1963. Buried in Samaria. Married Mary Mae John (1901-1989) 26 February 1921.
Eliza Mae Williams born 10 February 1888 in Samaria and died 6 July 1967 in Ogden. Buried in Ogden. Married Gomer Vaughan Rees (1883-1971) 24 November 1904 in Samaria.
Margaret Rebecca Williams born 25 November 1889 in Samaria and died 9 November 1980. Buried in New Philadelphia, Tuscarawas, Ohio. Married Walter Russell Ripley (1895-1979) 13 December 1913 in Malad.
John Haines Williams born 31 May 1891 in Samaria and died 25 February 1957 in Malad. Buried in Malad. Married Eleanor Jones (1899-1975) 29 March 1916 in Malad.
Catharine Zina Williams born 14 August 1893 in Samaria and died 19 Oct 1988 in Salt Lake City. Buried in Malad. Married Elijah R van Ables (1892-1961) 12 December 1920 in Malad.
Beatrice Estella Williams born 30 July 1894 in Samaria and died 9 December 1976. Married Carl William Jones (1892-1958) 4 April 1913 in Malad, later divorced. Married Allen John Keehn (1888-1957) 16 November 1938 in Elko, Elko, Nevada.
Frances Orenda Williams born 6 May 1897 in Samaria and died 10 September 1897 in Samaria.
George Thomas Williams born 22 February 1901 in Samaria and died 24 June 1962 in Pocatello. Buried in Restlawn Memorial, Pocatello, Bannock, Idaho. Married Theona Withers (1906-1990) 4 October 1924 in Malad.
With Aunt Sergene’s passing, I thought I would make some of the photographs I have of her and her life available. I am wrapping this around the language of her obituary.
Sergene was born 2 February 1932 in Preston, Franklin, Idaho. She is the sixth of twelve children born to Mary Louise Wanner and William Fredrick Andra. My Grandmother, Colleen, is the fifth and was four years older than Sergene.
Sergene graduated from Preston High School in 1950. She was a cheerleader and the Preston Night Rodeo Queen where she was pictured on Roy Roger’s horse, Trigger Jr., on the cover of the Preston Rodeo program in 1949.
Immediately after high school she married a guy from Malad who turned out to be quite abusive. Sergene defended herself and quickly had the marriage annulled.
Sergene married Bert B Sorenson 22 August 1950 in Nampa, Canyon, Idaho. Two children were born to the marriage, Scott B Sorenson (1951) and Andrew S Sorenson (1953). Bert worked for Mountain Bell.
Sergene purchased The Wig Wam in Burley in 1969. She purchased the Ponderosa Beauty Salon in 1973 and the Merle Norman Cosmetics store in Twin Falls in 1976. She only purchased the businesses, not the buildings in which they were located. The Ponderosa closed in the 1980’s and the salon with it. I don’t know when she sold or gave up the Twin Falls store. She ran the Burley location until she retired from it in the early 1990’s. It was a sort of forced retirement as the restaurant next door caught fire and Sergene not to make the repairs to her building but just close shop.
Sergene had a knack for golf and bowling. She participated in the Idaho State Amateur Golf Tournament for 53 consecutive years. She was honored as the Burley Municipal Ladies Golf Association champion from 1956 to 1986. She regularly participated on the Idaho Women’s and Chapman couple’s golf circuits. She also served as a member of the Idaho Couples Golf Association.
Bert passed away 4 March 1991 in Burley, Cassia, Idaho.
Sergene married Harlan Brent Jensen 13 November 1991 in Elko, Elko, Nevada.
Harlan passed away 4 February 2002 in Burley.
Sergene then spent considerable time with her dear friend and companion Edward Neil Dean from that point forward. They were close friends and golfing buddies.
Sergene passed 14 February 2013 in Lake Havasu, Mohave, Arizona.