Sunday, June 17, 2012

Lydia Frances Kemp

The life history of Lydia Frances Kemp Stevenson Packham
By her daughter- Bertha Louise Packham Cragun
In the year 1863 James and Frances Mary Goodsell Kemp arrived by covered wagon in Salt Lake City, Utah.  Coming with a group of Mormon pioneers.  They had crossed the Atlantic  Ocean with others of the same faith, having been converted to Mormonism by missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints. 
James and Frances were advised by church authorities to travel north up into the Cache Valley section of Utah.  They had buried two little sons in Hastings, England.  Hewey Kelsey, born Dec 16, 1860 died Sept 3, 1862, and Charles Edward born Aug 31 1862 died Sept 31, 1862
Their oldest son James A. Kemp born July 15, 1852 in Hastings Sussex Co. England came with them and the family settled in Wellsville, Cache Valley, Utah,  where my mother Lydia Frances Kemp was born on Oct 12, 1863.  (Their 2nd daughter Sarah was born June 11, 1865 and died Nov 12,1866.) It must have been a home of great rejoicing the day this dear little girl was born.  Sweet little Lydia with her big sparkling grey eyes and her lovely dark hair.  What a joy she must have been to these dear parents who had a suffered such a loss in England. Lydia, who was small of stature, was destined to become the mother of twelve children.  While Lydia was still a very small child, her parents James and Mary Frances Kemp became discouraged and dissatisfied with the Mormon faith and lost their testimony of its truthfulness.  Though they were of a very religious nature, they, with other friends, decided they would give up their membership in the Mormon Church and join up with the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ, which was a denomination that broke off from the original church which was organized by Joseph smith in 1830. 
Consequently they pulled up stakes and along with friends of a like mind they again crossed the plains by covered wagon traveling east this time and continued on until they reached Plum Hollow, Missouri.  The head quarters of the Reorganized LDS being in Independence Missouri.  There they were very active in the Reorganized Church and grandfather James Kemp became a minister in that church.
So little Lydia began her young girlhood in Missouri and Kansas where her parents earned a living by farming.  When Lydia was sixteen years of age in 1879 her parents again pulled up stakes and traveled west, settling in Conifer Jefferson, County, Colorado.  Three days drive by train and wagon north of Denver, Colorado.
During the preceding years Lydia had been taught by her thrifty mother to become a good housekeeper and cook.  The income was meager and there were many mouths to feed by this time as the family had grown in numbers to nine children.  Later two more sons were born to James and Mary Frances Kemp, after moving to Colorado.  Making a total of fourteen children my grandmother Mary Frances gave birth to.  She later adopted a little Paul Casaner who was born Nov 3, 1896 when grandmothers youngest son Roy Leslie Kemp was thirteen yrs of age.  So this made twelve children grandmother raised to maturity.  Three having died in infancy.  Fifteen children in all. 
Grandfather was a faithful worker in his church and served as a minister fro many years.  [He] performed many wedding ceremonies, and preached many funeral sermons.  Grandmother was always ready to help the sick and to care for those in need.  She practiced midwifery and delivered many babies born in the area where they lived.
Lydia had grown into a beautiful young lady by the time she was seventeen.  Not tall in stature as she was only 4 ft 11 in. tall.  But so sweet and fair with big grey eyes and such beautiful dark hair, which was inclined to be curly.  Not only was she beautiful of face and figure, but she had developed into a gentle, kindly, self sacrificing young lady.  She had become a wonderful housekeeper and cook.  She being the oldest daughter her mother had depended upon her for much help in caring for the younger bothers and sisters.
Grandmother had no sewing machine so the pants, shirts, dresses and underwear were sewn by hand.  And there was much to be done for this growing family.  Grandmother was a beautiful seamstress and she did the sewing while mother helped by caring for the house and preparing meals and looking after the younger children.
It was early in the year of 1881 that a letter came to grandfather James Kemp from his sister, one Elizabeth Kemp White asking for someone of grandfathers and grandmothers daughters to come to North Ogden Utah to live with her, she being eighty-five years old and was all alone and becoming so feeble.  It was decided after much discussion that Lydia could come.  She was seventeen years old and so capable.  She was put on the train in Denver and made the trip to Ogden alone.  A stranger to her aunt and no friends she knew.  But with her sweet personality and her kind and gentle ways.  And so full of energy and good health she soon won a place in Aunt Betsys heart, and in the hearts of neighbors and friends of Aunt Betsys (as Elizabeth was called by those who knew and loved her).  Aunt Elizabeth grew more feeble and her health continued to fail as is normal and natural with the aged, and after Lydia had been with her two years she passed away.  Grandfather and grandmother Kemp sent the money to pay for Lydia to return home.  But in the two years she had been in North Ogden, she had heard and gained a testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ and had been baptized into the Church.  She had also met a young man by the name of William Stevenson,(born in England Feb.13,1853) who had become very dear to her...they had become engaged to be married.  So Lydia accompanied by her young man went to the Branch President (there was no bishop in north Ogden at that time) and asked his advice as to what she should do.   His advice was to send the money back to her father that he had sent to pay her way home to Colorado, and stay here in Utah and marry her young man.
So on the 13th day of Feb. 1883 Lydia Frances Kemp became the bride of William Stevenson.  This is a copy of the original letter that she Wrote to her father telling of her decision to remain in Utah.  This letter was written at North Ogden Weber county Feb 15, 1883:
My Dear Father,
It is with a trembling hand I write you these few lines, but I hope and trust they will find all well at home. 

I guess you will be rather a little surprised when you get my letter.  But I need not tell you much for that which is enclosed will tell all that is needed.
I am sorry you have sent the money to come home with, as my husband doesnt wish me to return just now. 

I shall have to return you the money and I am very much obliged to you , but I cant come.
I hope and trust you will forgive me and accept William as a son. 

Break the news gently to dear mother and beg her to forgive me.  I am sorry I had not your consent, but it would have killed me to leave him, so you must forgive me.
I will send you the money back tomorrow Friday, Feb 16.  so you will know. 

Well I cannot write very much now .  Enclosed you will find a likeness of him I have chosen as my companion.  Write and tell me what you think of him. 

Give my love to all. Kiss dear mother for me.  I hope to remain still your loving daughter.
 Lydia F Stevenson.
Enclosed in this letter from mother to her parents was a duplicate copy of her marriage certificate.  She was married the 13th day of Feb. 1883,  in north Ogden Utah by Nathaniel Montgomery, Justice of the Peace.
Lydia and William were very happy and as the months went by they found there was to be a baby born in the late fall.  They were thrifty and worked hard to prepare for the blessed event that was to be.  The months flew by and no one could be happier.  They were young (mother only nineteen) and their hopes were high for a long and lasting companionship. 

But this was not to be, in the early fall William became very ill and continued to grow worse and on Oct 12 1883 he passed away leaving this grief stricken little bride of less than a year a widow with her unborn child.  No heart can tell the sorrow and the anguish Lydias poor heart suffered at this time. 
She had many friends who rallied around and tired to comfort her asking heart.  Among these friends was John and Emily Knowles Packham.  A young couple who had come to Utah from England .  John Packham was an uncle of William Stevenson.  He being the son of John’s half sister.  John Packham was born Aug. 31st 1852 in Maresfield Parrish, Sussex, England.  Emily Knowles was born in England in 1854.  They helped in every way they could.  Even to taking Lydia into their home after the funeral of her William was over.  They kept her there and cared for her as a sister.  Her baby boy, William Albert was born Oct. 14, 1883 in the home of John and Emily and Lydia was nursed back to health by their tender care. 

Theirs was a busy household and there was much to do.  As a consequence, Lydia remained on in the Packham house.  Besides John and Emily there were two little boys, their sons, William John and Charles Austin.  Also the little boys grandfather Knowles (father of Emily) and Emilys two grown brothers Samual and Edward Knowles.  Known as Uncle Sam and Uncle Ted.
So Lydia was a wonderful help in caring for so many.  Especially as Johns wife Emily was in very poor health.  Lydias little baby boy was a joy and comfort to her, helping to ease the ache in her heart at the loss of her husband.  She named her baby William Albert.  He was called Bert and as Bert he has always been known.
The house was small just a two room log house, later a third room was added along with a summer kitchen or porch where the cooking was done in hot summer weather.  Water had to be carried from a spring located over a quarter mile away on the Wade property. 

Emily continued to fail in health and grow weaker day by day.  She had developed Tuberculosis and later in the year of 1884 on … she passed away.  Exacting a promise from Lydia that she would remain in the home and care for her two little boys and John her husband.  She knew in her heart the kindness and the gentleness of sweet Lydia, and that her Will and Charles would never want for a mothers love and care if Lydia would only remain and care for them.  It also meant there would be a home and shelter and living for Lydias little baby Bert.  So Lydia gave Emily her promise she would remain in the home and be a mother to will and Charles and a companion to John.
Consequently on … Lydia was married to John Packham in the Logan temple.  Grandfather Knowles Emily’s father) and her brothers Samual and Edward continued to live in the home.  So Lydias days were full and long caring for the aged grandfather the two brothers-in-law of John and with her own year old boy, Johns two boys beside herself and John, she really spent …
There were large meals to prepare three times a day.  Their fuel was mostly wood and sagebrush.  A ton or two of coal helped out in the winter.  The stove, which furnished heat for the home as well as for the cooking, was a flat long stove with six stove lids on the flat surface.  Three on each side of the flat top.  The fire box was under the two front lids and there was a fender projecting out in front of the fire box.  The firelight could be seen twinkling in the evening and early mornings glow.  Which was pleasant and so comforting for the cold feet of the boys when they came in from their chores and their play in the winter time.
During the time Lydia had lived in the home Uncle Ted(Emily’s bro. Edward) had tried to court Lydia and desired to marry her.  But she was not interested in him, so nothing came of it.  But when John asked her to marry him she consented. 

Later on (Emilys brothers Edward and Sam) decided they would like to be out on their own so John helped them buy farms in the Cache Valley further north.  They had all been owners of the home place in Pleasant View, Weber County, consequently Ted and Sam moved to Cache Valley to the little town of Avon.  Father bought them out.  Grandfather Knowles remained in John and Lydias home until his death some seven years later.
He always loved and respected Lydia a great deal and she was tender sweet and kind to him always. 

After Lydia and John were married a year, their first son Henry was born Mar 21st 1887.  Twenty-one months later the first daughter came to bless their home born Nov 14, 1888.  This was a time of great rejoicing.  John was so elated he wanted this first little girl named Emily in honor of his first wife.  So she was blessed and given the name of Emily Mary.  The Mary in honor of Lydias mother, Frances Mary Kemp or Mary Frances. 

There was much to do always.  In the summer there were berries to pick and many times Lydias baby Henry, was placed in a box and taken to the berry patch and put in the shade to be near his mother as she picked the berries.  She dragging the box along as she moved up and down the rows.
John had planted all kinds of fruit trees.  So there were peaches, apples, pears, cherries, grapes, as well as the small fruit.  Black berries, black caps, red raspberries, currants, both white and red.  English currants as well as black currants.  Also the many bushes of gooseberries are remembered.  Much canning and preserving was done and put away for winter use. 

Fourteen months after Emilys birth another son came to bless the home.  He was named Edward Francis, born Jan 23 1890 in honor of Uncle Ted Knowles and grandmother Kemp, Frances.  So Emil and Ed were both given their second name in honor of our grandmother Mary Frances kemp.
Time passed quickly in such a busy house .  While John and Lydias first child Henry was a baby in 1887 John decided he would drive a well close to the home.  It was such a tremendous task to carry water so far to keep so may people clean and supplied with food, drink, clean clothes, and clean floors.  Lydia was such a meticulous house keeper.  The log house had three long logs (large ones) as beams across the top with no ceiling finish.  And every spring and fall those logs and the log walls (with mud pressed into fill the chinks) were white washed with a lime solution and the floors (which were made of wide slabs full of knots) were kept scrubbed with home-made soap, lye, and a good stiff scrubbing brush.  She did this on her hands and knees.  No mop stick was in our home.  Consequently it took much water to care for the home and family. 

Neighbors thought our father John was a foolish man to go to the expense of driving a well in such a dry gravelly bed, but father paid no heed and even told them he planned to make a fish pond when he got water.  How they laughed at him!  Old grandfather Shaw, the nearest neighbor, stood there watching the well digger pounding away.  He shook his head and laughed, I can almost see him in my minds eye (though this was five years before I was born).  Mother and father told us how he tittered standing there holding his hands behind his back, also with his long flowing white beard hanging down over his chest.  He was flabbergasted and too astonished to believe his eyes when low and behold the water began to come in and when the casing had been driven ninety feet into the ground there was the most beautiful stream of water, cool, clear, pure, water coming from the depths of an underground stream.  Yes, enough to fill a six inch pipe flowing and booming out with a great, constant, rush.  Oh, what a blessing to this family who had waited so long for plenty of water to care for their needs.
And soon fathers dream of a fish pond came true.  He built a long pond some hundred and fifty feet long and fifty feet wide.  And stocked it with fish.  He also planted two weeping willow trees, (on the north bank of the pond) which grew into huge trees as the years went by.  With their long weeping branches hanging down, many of them reaching the water.  They were so beautiful and are such a dear memory of our childhood home.  Now with plenty of clear pure water mother Lydia began to make butter to sell.  Father John built a low rock walled cellar, with red bricks placed side by side on the floor.  With walls a foot thick and a heavy door to walk through.  He made an opening in one corner near the ground and had the well water run from the watering trough down through this opening and into and over the brick cellar floor.  Keeping this thick, thick walled cellar cool and nice.  He made a cupboard with wide shelves in it for mother Lydia to place her pans of milk to cool and to let the cream rise to the top.  The cupboard had screen doors to keep out insects etc.  She had a cream skimmer made of tin shaped similar to an inverted paddle with small holes in it and a handle projecting out to hold to while she skimmed the rich yellow cream from the pans of milk.  So Lydias days became more full as the years passed by. 
When Edward Francis was two years and 3 days old, I Bertha Louise was born on Jan 26, 1892. My older brothers Will and Charl chose the name of Bertha for me and my 2nd name Louise was in honor of my father Johns mother, my grandmother Louise Gurr who lived and died in England.
Now there were two little girls and five boys in the home.  Father added one large room to the two room cabin about this time.  This room was built on the north side of the kitchen and one step higher.  The wall was thick and this step made a nice place for mother to sit in the evening with the baby on her lap and at the breast and the other little ones gathered around her.  She sang many songs to us here and read many stories to us as the years passed by. 

In the fall of the year father always butchered hogs, and home cured the hams, bacon, and shoulders for our years meat supply.  He always made a big pan of home made sausage too.  We had wonderful meals from all the things stored away for our winter use.
There was a root cellar built in which father made bins to hold the potatoes, the carrots, parsnips, squash, and cabbage raised in his wonderful garden.  Plenty to last this growing family until fresh vegetables came the next summer.  We also had bins of beautiful red apples and the white pear… apples we loved to eat so much.  In the winter evenings one of the children would go down into this cellar and bring up a big pan of apples for the family to eat and enjoy before going to bed.  In the root cellar there was a big cupboard of shelves where mother kept the fruit she bottled.  Hundreds of quarts. Of all kinds of fruit and great crocks of home made preserves.  How well I remember the raspberry and ripe gooseberry jam she made.  Also the crocks of home made chow-chow pickles and the big barrel of cucumber pickles she had salted down in brine in the summer time.  Then in winter time we would take a pan full out of the brine and draw the salt out by changing fresh water, soaking many times.  Then putting them in jars and pouring vinegar over them.  Oh what delicious food we had to eat.  All raised right on our own dear land.
When Bertha was almost two years old, in fact on the very 1st day of Jan 1894 a new years gift of a beautiful baby girl (the third girl) came to bless the home.  What a new years gift she was!  With her beautiful yellow gold hair and her big blue eyes and fair skin.  She was named Lucy Harriet.  Her first name in honor of our mothers sister Lucy and her second name in honor of our fathers sister Harriet.
The time flew by and on Dec 15 1895 another little brown haired girl came.  She was named Ellen Lydia in honor of mothers sister Helen and fathers sister Ellen and her second name in honor of our own dear mother Lydia.
The family was growing and the tasks of sewing for us all grew heavier.  Mother knit our stockings of black yarn.  Socks for the men and older boys, stockings for the girls and younger boys who wore knee pants in those days with long stockings.
The winter snows came early in the winter around thanksgiving and lasted until March.  We had a big bobsleigh that had a wagon box put on the runners in the wintertime and with a good team of horses to pull it we always could count on a good sleigh ride to Sunday School.  That is one thing we never missed.  We were always bathed on Saturday night in a round washtub.  Father shined all our little shoes.  If there was no shoe polish (which happened sometimes with so may to provide for) he would use stove soot mixed with a few drops of vinegar.  He would have them all ready for us on Sunday morning.  We would all pile into the bobsled in the winter and gather up the neighbor children all along the way.  And away we would go with a sleigh full of us, all standing up to make room for everyone.  Laughing and singing as the older boys or father drove the spirited horses to the ward meeting house.  Our ward meeting house was just one big room or hall with a stage at one end where the pulpit and the choir seats were, and a room behind the stage.  Used as a classroom and a storage room.  The church was heated with a tall coal-burning heater. The deacons took turns going early to make a fire to get the building warm by ten oclock for Sunday School.  Then after our service was over, out we would go and pile into the sleigh and away we’d go for home.
Mother always had a big Sunday dinner ready when we got there.  Many times it would be a big roast of beef with plenty of vegetables and always cake or a pie of some kind.  We were always welcome to bring our friends home to dinner too.  Sometimes she roasted two or three big chickens with dressing.  Oh how we enjoyed her good food.  She always baked bread at least three or four times a week.  Seven or eight loaves baked in what they called a dripping pan. 
In the fall of the year father would take grain  (after the thrashing was done) to the grist mill (sometimes in Ogden and sometimes in Brigham city) and he would bring back white flour and graham flour or whole wheat flour also bran for the live stock,  enough to last us all through the winter.  He would bring it in big cloth bags that would hold a hundred lbs.  I forgot to mention about the Lard or shortening they would render out when he butchered the hogs.  Pounds and pounds of pure white home rendered lard to use for shortening and frying all through the year.  Which reminds me of the big pans of fried potatoes she used to fix.  Oh my how brown and how very delicious they were.  No one ever could fix them to taste as well as she could.  Our homemade bread and all the good butter we had are truly wonderful memories.
When Ellen was almost three years old another baby boy was born on Dec 11, 1898.  This baby was named George Dewey.  He was small and frail and mother had such a time to find something he could eat and thrive on.  He lived and grew though he was always small in stature.  But with a radiant smile and he grew into a kind and most generous boy.  When George was two years old mother was expecting another baby.  Also at this time our oldest brother Will was called to fill a mission for the church.  I well remember the night of the farewell party that was given for him in our old ward meeting house.  I remember the great amount of food our dear mother prepared (including roast chicken) and packed in a wicker clothes basket for father to take to the party.  He took all we older children along and mother didnt go.  At that time mother was expecting another child and in those days an expectant mother did not go out in public.  Consequently the family went without mother and the very young children.
Our brother Will left in a few days in 1900 for the Central States Mission.  That was the winter our brother Geo was two years old.  In Feb, Feb 13.1901 following Wills departure for his mission mother gave birth to another son.  This made the 4th son born to John and Lydia, these 4 our oldest brothers Will and Charl (fathers two) and mothers one (Bert) made 7 boys and these coupled with us four girls really made a house full.  Charl worked away from home by this time and Bert too, worked a good deal for other people bringing his pay home to mother. Times were hard and money was scarce in those days.  It has always amazed me as I think back how well mother managed.  She was a genius at making things stretch and always managed to have a nice gift for each birthday and there never was a time we didnt get something.  Sometimes a new hair ribbon, and sometimes a pretty little cup and saucer or a toy for the girls, and a pocketknife or marbles for the boys.  Sometimes a storybook and many an evening was spent with mother reading to younger children.  
This fourth son was named Alfred Walter.  He was a much stronger healthier baby than was our dear little George.  Alfred or Al as he was later called was a beautiful baby with real dark blue eyes and curly hair.  He grew and slept so well and brought so much pleasure into the home.

We children were all taught to work and help both in the barn and fields as well as in the house with cooking, cleaning and dish washing.  In the summer every Sat.  the kitchen chairs were taken out unjder the big trees and scrubbed with hot suds and a brush.  The bone handled knives and forks were scoured with brick dust, made by pounding pieces of brick to a powder.  In the spring time when the weather warmed up there was always a real house cleaning job done on the house.  Father would mix lime and some sort of solution of water etc. and with a long handeled brush he would whitewash the walls through out the house, ceilings and walls alike.

About the time he was eight months old or in the early fall of 1901, our own grandmother came to visit us.  Mind you mother had never seen her parents nor her brothers or sisters since she left their home in Colorado when she was seventeen.  There had never been enough money for her to take a visit to see her family.  And her responsibilities had increased year by year with her ever growing family.
So when grandma Kemp came it truly was a great event in our young lives.  Never before had we as children known a grandmother or grandfather, an Aunt or and Uncle.  We always felt cheated on this score.  All our little friends had grandparents, Aunts, and Uncles.  It seemed so sad to us not to have this great blessing.  Though as a result of not having our very own grandparents, aunts and Uncles we had learned to call some of our parents dear friends Aunt and Uncle.  And grandma Wade was the only grandma we ever knew.  She was our closest neighbor. And to us young children, she was always grandma.
Grandma Kemp was our very own.  She was the mother of our own dear mother Lydia.  So we truly were happy to have her visit our home.  She came on the train from Denver, Colorado and she spent a whole month with us.  O how wonderful to have her!  I remember her so well and especially what a beautiful prayer she would offer as Father called on her as we kneeled in family prayer, as was always the custom in our home.  Every morning before we sat up to the table to eat, the chairs were all turned with the back to the table and we all kneeled in family prayers, father presiding and calling on a different member each morning.
Grandma spent a month with us and the time passed all too quickly.  It was a sad day when she had to bid us all good-by and the folks took her to the Depot in Ogden.  They rode in what was called a light spring wagon or buckboard drawn by a fine team of horses.
The next summer mothers brother Jessie came to see us for just a few days.  Now we had seen a grandmother and one Uncle, really and truly seen them!  It seemed like a dream to all of us.
Mother Lydia was brave and strong and though she had to part with her mother after a months visit, she never let us know how much her heart must have ached.  If she wept, and Im sure she must have, we never knew it.  Her grief and her heartaches were always kept with-in herself. 
Along about this time mother and father began to plan in earnest to build a new house for this large family.  So plans were drawn up, contractors were hired and the work began on the new house.  This was in 1903 and again there was another baby on the way.  Our brother Charl had married May Hickenlooper and our brother Will returned from a two year mission.  Charl and May lived in Ogden and he worked for the school for the deaf.
Will was home and he helped with all the digging of trenches for the cement and rock foundation.  Father had purchased, many years before, enough red brick to build this six-room house.  The building went along rapidly but the house was not finished in time for the new baby to be born in.
This time the baby was a sweet little girl, with lots of dark hair.  She was born Aug 23, 1903 and was named Ina May.  She was a small baby and grew well, but was a shy little girl and always remained small in stature.  Short like mother and thin too.  Never weighed more than 98 or a 100 pounds. Even after she was a grown woman.
We finally got into our new house in late Sept. of 1903.  How proud and happy we were to have all this room.  There were three bedrooms with closets upstairs and one bedroom, a parlor or living room as they are now called, and a great large kitchen and pantry and a room for the bathroom, which was never finished,  as long as we lived there.  Mother bought a new carpet for the living room floor that had red and pink roses in it, she thought it so beautiful. Our very first carpet that was not made of hand sewn carpet rags and woven at the carpet weaver.
The rag carpets we had in the old log house were made of long strips of woven carpeting about 32 in wide with the strips sewn together by hand.  For padding under the carpet in the log house, father put new clean straw after the grain was thrashed in the fall of the year.  Every fall the carpet was taken up, put out on the clothesline and the dust was beaten out of it.  Then after the old straw padding was swept up and removed the floor scrubbed and the walls, and windows cleaned, the carpet was placed again over clean straw and stretched with a tool called a carpet stretcher and tacked to the floor with carpet tacks.
In the fall of the year after the grain was thrashed all the straw ticks or mattresses from the beds were taken out and the old straw emptied out and the ticks washed and dried and filled with fresh new straw.
So the real carpet purchased in town was truly beautiful to us children.  Mother and Father bought some 2nd hand furniture for our living room from a lady in town by the name of Minerva Duray.  There was a red plush couch, some chairs, a center table, a folding bed, etc.  We had a nice looking coal oil lamp with a big white shade setting on the center table.  There were no electric lights in those days.  We used coal oil lamps in all the rooms and the lamps were filled with oil from a ten-gallon can.  The lamp chimneys were clear glass and had to be washed every day or so and the lamp wicks trimmed in order to make our even light flame.
Our house was heated with coal stoves, a pot-bellied stove in the living room and the big coal range in the kitchen heated that part  of the house.  We had a round pot-bellied heating stove in the parlor.
We still washed our cloths on the old washboard and heated the wash water in the clothes boiler.  The white clothes were all boiled in the wash boiler after being rubbed on the board.  We softened the wash water with lye, which was cut and melted in hot water and used bar laundry soap to make suds in the boiler.  Sometimes mother made our laundry soap out of fat she saved and cooked with lye in a big clack cauldron out in the door yard over a fire on the ground.

We girls were growing up now and were able to help with so many of the household duties, like fruit picking and packing.  We children picked cherries also picked and packed peaches to be sold.  We had all kinds of good fruit for our own use and also to sell. The older boys worked in the fields, plowing and planting, hoeing and cultivating.  We raised lots of tomatoes to sell to the cannery also lots of sugar beets to sell to the sugar factory.  The children were taught to work and help with all chores as they grew old enough.  The motto was early to bed and early to rise, on our family and that just what we did.  All were up and around the breakfast table by seven.  The stock fed and watered, the milking done and by now father had purchased a Cream-De-La-Seal milk separator, so the milk had all been run through the separator.  All were dressed and washed and ready to eat breakfast by 7.  When prayers were said and breakfast over the men went to the fields the younger ones helped with the dishes and morning work in the house and those a little older were sent to take the cows to the pasture, which was nearly a mile away.  This was the summer procedure.  Then when school began in September there were lunches put up and placed in empty lard pails for us children to carry to school a mile and a half away.
After we moved into the new brick house, father tore part of the old log house down, and he used the remainder of it for an ice house.  In the wintertime he hauled blocks of ice from Sheeps Ice Pond in Ogden.  It was located east of the Ogden river bridge.  He hauled many loads of ice and many loads of sawdust purchased at the sawmill and lumberyard.  The ice was packed in thick layers of sawdust to keep it insulated.  So when summer came with its scorching hot weather we had plenty of ice.  They purchased an icebox, which was a real modern thing in those days.  It had a lid on the top, which one could open and put in a fifty-pound chunk of ice.  There were shelves underneath and a door opened out.  So here is where we kept our cream and our food.   All summer long there was an ice pan underneath the icebox that caught the melted ice as it trickled down a pipe from the floor of the ice chamber on top.  We felt we really had something with that.
Then too, we had ice on hand to make up freezers of homemade ice cream, which was really a popular dessert at our home.  Mother made it with milk, eggs, and cream.  For Sundays and holiday treats.  We sold ice to the neighbors too.  After getting the icebox father decided to make a fish hatchery of the old milk cellar.  It was an ideal place for that, with water continually running through it over the brick floor.  He had four troughs made the length of the cellar and had wire mesh over the ends and fixed so the water ran through the troughs.  Here is where the fish eggs were deposited, and the tiny, hatched fish lived in these troughs until they were large enough to be put out into the ponds. 
He had built three nice cement ponds each one lower than the other, on a gradual incline.  The water from the first one emptied into the second one and from the second one down into the third one.  There was fine mesh screens over the openings so the fish from one pond could not escape into the next pond lower.  Father used to buy liver at the slaughterhouse in Ogden by the tubful.  And it was the job of us children to grind the liver with a hand powered meat chopper for fish food.  We all learned to swim in these ponds too.  Not only we of our family but all the kids in our neighborhood too.  We had such wonderful times through the years.
About this time our brother Bert was married to Kate Mathews.  Daughter of our nearest neighbor, Mrs. Ruth Mathews who had bought and moved to the old Shaw home.  They moved here from Salt Lake City.  Mother saw to it we children always attended Primary and Sunday School was a must for all.  As we became old enough we also attended our Mutual Improvement Meetings.  When we were young MIA was held on Sunday evenings. Sacrament Meeting was at 2 PM on Sunday afternoon and Sunday School at 10 AM
From the time father made our first fish pond, all the church baptisms in our ward were performed in what was know as Packhams fish pond.  Year in, and year out winter and summer.  Though some parents waited until warmer weather for this ordinance if the children were born in the winter,  though not all of them.   Mother was very gracious and kind about letting the mothers bring their little ones into our house to prepare for their baptisms.  And be brought into a warm room to change into dry warm clothes after the ordinance was over.  Father performed literally hundreds of baptisms during these years.  Time passed on and once more another child was expected on our home.  Mother was preparing baby clothes and by this time I, Bertha was doing a good deal of the sewing for the family.  I was so very pleased when mother allowed me to hem all the diapers, also make outing flannel night gowns and other baby clothing for the little one soon to come.  It was summer time and we had been in our new house almost two years.
Our oldest sister Emily was away from home working this summer.  She worked for Molly Rhees in her home.  It was on August 7, 1905 that mother knew the baby was coming this day.  Father was away, had to go to town that morning and along toward afternoon mother told Henry and me the baby would be coming.  How we worked in her room, Henry and I we cleaned and dusted and even moved a coal heater out of the room that had been there since wintertime.  Father returned and we sent for Mrs. Storey who was so good to help when a new baby was due.  Evening came on and mother felt we might need more light so I was sent to our nearest neighbors the Mathew to borrow a lamp.   And along about ten in the evening a dear little dark haired boy was born.  He was such a darling cute little round-faced chubby baby.  In due time he was taken to church and given the name of Lawrence Reed Packham. 
I was fourteen years old by this time and Emily was seventeen.  She came home from her job at the Rheess to help me, or I help her, take care of the family and home while our mother was in bed with our little Lawrence for ten days.
We continued to do our laundry by hand on the old washboard.  We had two of them and both Emily and myself were real good at this job. Mother had trained us well.  We kept the house up well and each one in the house helped with all the work.  The younger girls were just as helpful as we older ones.  Henry and Ed did their share too.
After mother was able to be up and about again we were so happy.  It was so depressing or lonely or something to have our mother down. The one thing she never did, was lay around and let others do for her.  She was always up and at it no matter how tired she was. At times during her life, as I grew older, I think it must have been when she was pregnant, she was troubled with real bad varicose veins. Great big blue knots were puffed up on her poor legs.  I remember she used to let us bath her feet and legs in a large bucket of good warm water.  She would tell us how good it felt to her tired aching feet and legs.  We were too young to realize how very painful they must have been.  Our dear, sweet, uncomplaining, mother.  So slow to ever think of her own aches and pains, and so very quick to doctor, fix, and make comfortable any one of us children.  Whether it was a skinned knee a bumped head and aching back or one of us girls with bad cramps.  She knew exactly the remedy and treatment to give us.  Always so gentle, tender, and kind. We can never forget how she planned and schemed to see to it we children had something pretty and new for Christmas and for the 4th of July.  Those two times of the year was when we got a new dress and boys new shirts and pants etc.  Money was so scarce and she had to do it all with money she got from eggs and from the butter she made and sold.  She went without year in and year out herself in order to keep us children looking nice, and we didnt begin to realize the hundreds of sacrifices she made for our happiness.  Years later it dawned on us what she had done but we can never know in full all the times she would have liked to have had something for herself.  And done some of the things she would loved to have done if there weren’t so many others to think of.
In the fall of the year we girls were allowed to go to the canning factory in north Ogden to work.  Helping with cutting peaches to be canned and peeling tomatoes.  We were able to earn a nice little sum of money, which was spent to help buy winter clothes.  We two older girls were beginning to have boy friends take us out a little by now.  And we dearly loved to go to the ward dances, which were held each week all through the fall and winter months.
We used to curl our hair with a little curling iron that we heated in the top of the lamp chimney.  Every one wanted curly hair in those days and ours happened to be straight.  Sometimes we put the little girls hair up on rag curlers at night so their hair would be pretty for school next day.
Emily, our oldest sister, was made secretary in the Sunday School and we were both asked to teach a class in primary.  It was when I was fourteen.  The smaller classes of children met across the road in the schoolhouse.
Our ward built a new brick meeting house along about this time, and there was room for all classes in the church building. Which was such a treat after meeting so many years in the little old one room frame meeting house.  The new church was made of yellow brick and was sort of a two story affair not the most convenient building in the world but we did have class rooms and a stage and amusement hall down stairs.  Also choir seats, and we had a real nice choir at that time.  Our brother Charles wife May played the organ and Joe Marshall was the name of our choir director.
In mid-winter of 1908 mother told us we would have a new baby in the spring.  I was seventeen years old by now.  And I did all the sewing for this little expected one.  Sweet little dresses and petticoats, diapers, and nightgowns and on May 10 1909 a darling little baby girl came.  She was a beautiful little doll with dark curly hair and big blue eyes.  We were all so elated and so proud of her.  She was named Eileen when the day came for her to be blessed.  We all loved and adored her.  So much even we used to argue who would be the one to pick her up from her bed in the morning when she awakened.  She grew and blossomed into a lovely girl.  And o how she loved mother.  This was her 12th and last baby born when mother was forty-six years old.
The spring Eileen was two years, old was the twenty-fifth wedding anniversary for mother and dad.  And he said it is time now Lydia for you to go see your parents.  So as a silver anniversary he took mother home to Conifer, Jefferson County, Colorado to visit her parents and family.  They took Eileen and Lawrence with them.  They had such a wonderful visit and that was the last time mother ever saw her father and mother.  Transportation was limited in those days.  There were no cars and not much cash ever to pay train fares.
I had married my childhood sweetheart Hyrum Cragun Sept 15, 1910 so I was not living at home when Father and mother went to see our grandparents.  Lucy and Ellen kept the house going and took care of the boys.  The washing, and ironing, also there were berries to be picked and butter to churn etc.  Emily was working away from home.  When the folks got home they found the girls had everything in order and all was under control.  Lucy was past sixteen and Ellen past fourteen by now.  They had learned their lessons well. 

Time passed and in the spring of 1912 father sold our beautiful farm and home and went up into Idaho and bought a ranch.  The girls were broken hearted to think of leaving all their dear friends and moving away.  I too was in despair at having them move away form me.  I felt I could hardly endure the separation.
Henry had married Cynthia Short a girl who lived in Farr West in November of 1911 so he didnt go with the folks to Idaho.  The day they left was the saddest day of my life up until then.  I know mother was sad to leave the home and farm she had lived in so many years.  But she was never one to complain, and always felt a wifes duty was to go where the husband felt was best.  No one ever heard her make a complaint or offer any criticism of this move.  Though they knew a few years later it had been a mistake.
The farm property that was once grandfathers is now a beautiful, attractive country club.

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