Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Thornton Memories by Aunt Edith

              Thornton Memories by Edith Christensen
     I don’t remember much about my dad, I was only 7 years old at the time he died. That was the 19th of January, 1910. He died of heart trouble and kidney trouble.   They called the Kidney problem, Bright’s disease at that time.  We knew it was terminal for at least two weeks before he died.   One of the greatest tragedies in American Fork was the passing of John Thornton.
      He and Grandpa Thornton ran a lumber yard and coal yard up here on 1st North by the Union Pacific Depot.  And they had another lumber yard up by Pleasant Grove, that the older brother, Alec Thornton, ran over there.  They had the two.  My dad was working here in American Fork with Grandpa.   Dad over worked. He had an uncle Freddy Wright who lived across the road from him, a brick layer.  And Freddy was 70 years old and still laying brick.  Mother would get after father for working so hard. He would say, “I don’t want to have to work when I’m 70 years old like Uncle Freddy is.  I want to get my working done before then.”  But, boy, he really burnt the candle on both ends.  He had the main responsibility of the lumber work.  Grandpa was there and in the office and took care of the book work in the office.  But father had all of the running of the yard outside.  They would buy lumber.  They had a spur on the railroad where they could push the lumber car right into the lumber yard.  And then they would unload the lumber and put on their shelves.  Father helped quite a lot with the unloading of the lumber. The lumber was cut and ready to use.  They would then sell it to the people for home building and such .  There was quite a lot of mining work going on up the American Fork Canyon then, my dad got quite involved with it.  They would load the wagons with lumber to haul up the canyon.  They would haul it with horse and team.  Frank’s dad (Speaking of Frank Greenwood, husband to Jennie Thornton) used to haul things up the canyon for the mining that was going on at that time.  Father and them would furnish the lumber for some of the building  in the canyon. They also had a coal yard there.  It was called “A.K. Thornton and Son Lumber and Coal.”  Coal was the main heating source of the homes in those days.
     There was a new mine started up there in the canyon, it was called the “Whirlwind”.  Father and grandpa bought some stock in it. It was usually out of state people that would come and develop these mines. They would sell stock around here.  Father bought some Whirlwind stock and he used to promise Mother the world when the Whirlwind would pay off.  She would want to buy something or have something and he’d say, “Wait until that Whirlwind stock comes in and you can have anything.”
      Father did well financially.  They had a good business.  The lumber business was really good.  American Fork was building a lot of homes at that time and then the mining in the Canyon.  That was the only profit that came out of the Canyon.  The mines were lined with boards to keep the mines from falling in. They did find some [gold], but not much, but it was profitable. There was some gold and some silver.  Never any copper, the copper was in the Bingham [Canyon] and that way.   They did find some lead. There was quite a market for the lead.  It was considered a by product of the mining business.  But there was quite a market for it and they didn’t waste it.

     The house [the family home] was built before 1900.  They had the home all paid for and it was furnished quite well.  They had built the four rooms in the front in the first place.   Then they built a kitchen, bathroom, and pantry, and put a basement under that part. They didn’t have a basement under the front part. 
      Dad was quite  active in the church, but Mother didn’t do anything in the church.  She was busy raising a family of 7 children.  Mother was always busy at home.  The woman’s main job was to care for the house and children.  Women didn’t work outside of the home much until World War I.  Dad was a seventy.  He was chairman of the building committee when they built this chapel over here.  They divided the Wards in about 1901 and in 1903 they built four chapels in American Fork.  We were in the Alpine Stake, but that took in Lehi and Pleasant Grove and American Fork and Alpine at the time.  At the time of the building of these chapels, the saints in the area had to provide most of the money for the buildings and a lot of labor was donated locally.  Dad spent a lot of time over at the chapel.  I don’t remember about the building of it at first.  But at first they had these benches in the chapel and later they got these opera like chairs to put in the chapel.  Mother and I had been to town and we stopped in there [at the chapel] and it was Saturday night.  She said that we would stop in there and see if your dad is coming home because I know that they are putting the chairs in today and they wanted to get all of the chairs in before Sunday morning.  I remember going in there and he with some of the people in the ward were in there working to get all of the chairs in there in time for church Sunday.   Dad went to church every Sunday.  Mother and us kids would go sometimes.  In those days, the mothers stayed home with the small children and babies a lot.  We would go to Sacrament Meeting in the afternoon or Evenings.
     Florence was the oldest child born to John and Sarah.  She was born in February of 1892.  Millie was born in August of 1893.  They were only 18 months apart.  Then mother had a boy, Glen, and he only lived for two and a half years old when he died.  They had an epidemic of scarlet fever go through here [American Fork] and it was terrible on children.  They lost Glen.  I never did know him.  Then they had my brother Clyde in 1900. John and Sarah was sealed in the Temple after Clyde was born.  They had Florence, Millie and Clyde sealed to them and also had Glen sealed by proxy.  I was the first one born in the covenant, I was born in 1902 . Jennie was born in 1905 and Leora in 1909.  Leora was only seven months old when Father died.
     I remember dad coming home for lunch.  He didn’t have a bicycle.  But he did get one for the two older girls, [Millie and Florence] and he would ride it once in a while.  But grandpa had a bicycle and Father would ride it.  Grandpa would ride home first and have lunch while Dad worked at the lumber yard, then dad would ride grandpa’s bike home and have lunch.  From the lumber yard it was about a mile to home.   We had a cupboard in the kitchen. The lower part had two doors that opened, and the upper part was two glass doors for the fancy dishes.  The dishes we used most of the time were in the pantry cupboard.  The fancy dishes were in this cupboard.  There was a little trim scroll type thing on the top of the cupboard and dad would come in and put his hat up on the trim piece.  When he got ready to leave, he would get his hat down from the top of the cupboard.  I never saw him leave to work without a hat on.  It was like a felt hat with a small brim.  

    My parents never owned a car.  My dad had two teams of horses and wagons to pull the coal and lumber wagons. Uncle Alec, father’s older brother, had one of the first cars that I ever had a rode in.  And Uncle Will had one not too long after that.  But that was quite awhile after papa died.  There were horse and buggies when father was around.  Stores would deliver things with horse and buggy.
     I remember once that it was my birthday, April 1st, and he came down to the house and brought me a little knife and fork set.  I was still using that set when I went on my mission.  I don’t know what happened to it after that.   He came down to make a delivery in the truck and he came over to the house and gave my the knife and fork set.
       I hardly remember not having electricity.  I think I was about 3 or 4 years old when it [electricity] came to American Fork.  In those days the city would contract with the power company to the get the power to the city and the city would have to put in the lines.  Father was working and was on the city council when they were putting in the lines.  They didn’t have enough power for the whole city, and so they took the main part of the city down here.  They only planned on coming down to 1st or 2nd West with the power lines.  Our house was just one over and Father said that they just had to make it to our house.   He’d done all of that work for them supervising and directing.  So Mother said they scrapped up all of the parts from around the town and patched it together and made it. I remember Mother telling that father said it was half a block beyond what they had planned on, but because he had worked on everyone elses’, he gathered up the left overs and patched it up and got to our house.  That was the end of the line. Aunt Nell’s home did have it and we got some.  But later on we have quite a bit of trouble with that line and power would go out on us because of the patched up line.  And they had to put a new one in.
     I remember dad going up to Portland, Oregon, to a lumberman’s convention.  They gave him complimentary tickets to go up there to it.  Mother didn’t go with him.  That was before I went to school.  Clyde went to school before me and he brought everything home from school for me.   And I had the measles at the time that dad was up there.  He was worried about me because some of the measles were bad and some kids died from it.  Mother moved the bed from the bedroom out by the stove.  The bedrooms weren’t heated.  We had transoms over the window in the living room and they were fancy pieces of glass. The doctor made us put the blinds clear up to the top of the window so it was almost completely dark.   I remember when Father came home, he had brought candy home for the kids.  It was a box of stick candy.  The kids each got a box and thought they came from Portland.   Years later we found out dad had gotten off the train and on the walk home had stopped at Uncle Will’s drug store in American Fork and got the candy.

     There were very few movies then.  We did have a movie house, I don’t know when the first one came here. It wasn’t very often that we went to the movies.  The main recreation was the church.  The church would do dances, and plays.  Jennie took piano lessons, I never did.  We had a piano, father had bought it before he died.  And Millie and Florence was supposed to take lessons, Florence didn’t like it at all and Millie didn’t like it too well.  Jennie took lessons more than the rest of us.   It was a good piano.  It was a Davenport Tracey.  I never will forget when we bought it.  There was a man by the name of Nelson who was selling pianos.  He had to hard sell them in that day and age.  People didn’t just go in and pick out a piano.  He had to come and make the man believe he needed the piano.  I can remember that Nelson would be down there and they [Nelson and father] would sit at the table, one on one side and the other on the other.  And Nelson would stomp his hand down on the table and say “John Thornton, this is the best deal I’ve got for you and it is now or never.”  Father was used to bargaining with people and people with bargain with him for lumber.  He was bargaining with Nelson on the piano.  Finally we got it.   Mother never did play.  Jennie was the only that ever did anything with it. So we told her she was the one who could have the piano, because she was the one who had played it.  It [the piano] is still up at Idaho, Elaine, [Jennie’s daughter] had had it all refinished and such now.        Father had a sister, Sadie Thornton.  Grandpa’s house was down the street from here and about a block.   Sadie was a good piano player, she would accompany everyone that would sing at church.  She was also playing the organ in church.  And she would play the piano in church, and she did an awful lot of accompanying them.  She had a sister, Fern, who didn’t do much with it, and her older sisters didn’t do anything with it.  But Sadie was the best piano player.  She married Hide Willis from Lehi and died awful young.  She developed a health problem, she would just kind of pass out and never did know what it was. She would be going about doing work and all of the sudden she would pass out.  She would come out of it and be okay in awhile.  I don’t know what it was.  Grandma Thornton didn’t hardly ever want to let her out of her sight.  When she got married, Grandma Thornton was upset.  Grandma didn’t think she should get married.  But her husband was good to her and took good care of her.  They had two children. I believe, but grandma had to almost raise those kids because of the health problems.
        When we were little mother would fix cooked cereal quite a bit for breakfast.  We would have Oatmeal and Cream of Wheat.  There wasn’t the dry cereal like there is now.  We would have rolled oats.   Sometimes in the bottom of the box of cereal there was a cup or dish and saucer.  We would have Mother buy the brand with the dishes in the bottom. 
        We had chickens in the chicken coop and we would have chicken once in awhile.  Then we had the eggs.  But we had to buy all of the other meat.  There was meat markets all around town.  I think we had meat about 4 or 5 or maybe 6 times a week or more.
       We usually planted a garden.  Mother’s father, Grandpa Shelley, was a farmer and he used to come and plant our garden, even before father died.  Dad wasn’t much of a farmer.  He would have Grandpa come up and plant the garden and Dad would water it and we would harvest the things.  In the summertime we would have quite a lot of things out of our garden.  And in the backyard, they would plant potatoes and we would have potatoes all winter long.  We had a place to keep the potatoes and they would be okay all winter long.  We canned a lot of things from the garden.  We had everything down there on the lot.  We had 8 fruit trees in all.  Four on each side. Plums, pear and peaches.  And raspberries in the middle of the fruit trees.  In the front yard, he planted a strawberry patch.  Then in the back we had the garden.  We were pretty self sufficient. We had to be, because you couldn’t buy things in the stores. The stores would have hardware, and clothing and yard goods, but not even ready made dresses, you had to make your own clothes.  They also had laces and things like that.  I don’t remember as a kid buying groceries out of the stores.

    We didn’t dry much food, but some people did.  The neighbors had a tool shed out back and they would dry fruit on the top of their tool shed.  Mother would bottle all kinds of fruit and things.  She made pickles and everything.  I remember screwing the lids on for mother.  She would fill the bottles and they were hot.  We would get a wet cloth and hold the bottle and tighten the lid right tight.  She would put the lid on and have one of us come in and tighten the lids for her.  If Clyde was around he would tighten them.  She always figured she didn’t get them turned tight enough.  That was a big deal, we would bottle hundreds of quarts of fruit.  We had cupboards down stairs and had a one room cellar downstairs under the kitchen.  It had cupboards built right into the walls.  We could keep milk and that down there for two or three days.  We never had a refrigerator in that house, as long as I lived there, and I left there in 1925 for my mission.  Aunt Lide had one, but she would have to put ice in it.  It was an ice box, not electric like now.  We didn’t have a cow, so we would buy about a quart of milk a day.  You couldn’t buy milk out of the store, you had to find a farmer and buy the milk from him.   A lot of things were just traded back and forth as well as the use of money to buy things.
       Mother used to bake bread, 8 loaves in one big pan at a time.  Aunt Lide never had any children.  She was always buying remnants that would go on sale and she would give them to Mother.  Sometimes we would get a new dress out of one of the remnants.  We had our pictures taken when I was in the first grade.  I had this plaid dress on and I wore it to school on the day of pictures. When mother saw the pictures, she said, “Why didn’t you tell me, [it was picture day] I wouldn’t have let you wear that dress.”  I said that she shouldn’t have made me wear it anyway because I never liked it.  And I didn’t want it. Anyway, I didn’t know it was picture day.  We were embarrassed over that dress.  She made all of our clothes.  She used to make Aunt Lide’s too.  Aunt Lide would buy the stuff, but she never did any of her own sewing.  Mother used to do the sewing for Grandma and all. She was a really good seamstress.  She wore her sewing machine out.  I bought her a new one after Father died.  She didn’t use it too much because it was just a few years before she died.  I went on a mission and I never saw the sewing machine after that.  Mother taught me to sew, but I don’t know how to sew anymore.  I didn’t make much head way on sewing after I came home from my mission.  Millie had a sewing machine, but I didn’t use hers much. I started buying things. Jennie sewed a lot.
        Dad was only sick about three weeks before he died.   I remember on Christmas Day, 1909, he didn’t dress up.  He had dressed up and gone to work on every day of my whole life.  On this Christmas day, he didn’t dress up, he put on his robe and house slippers and sit in a chair all day.   And the day after Christmas, he didn’t go to work, because he was sick.  He had been really sick for two or three weeks, but he didn’t want to give up, he was just hanging in there and hanging in there.  My brother, Clyde and I were staying up at Aunt Lide’s, mother’s sister’s house.  She didn’t have any children, but she was really good to us. We had a tray nurse.  We didn’t have a hospital in town then, Provo was the closest one.  We got a registered nurse from the Provo hospital to come over and take care of my dad.  Then he had an Aunt Emma Miller, his mother’s brother’s wife.  She used to take care of newborn babies and such like that.  She came and stayed, kind of mostly the night shifts, and let the other nurse take care of him during the day.  He was only sick there for about three weeks and he was gone.      Mother never did survive that, she never did get over that. I wasn’t too enthused about Christmas after my mom and dad died.
     She [mother] never remarried. She wouldn’t have considered it. I think somebody suggested marriage once to twice, but she had no other love in her life, but my dad.  She used to say she just wanted to live long enough to get the children raised and then she didn’t care any thing about any thing after that.  She just wanted to get the children raised. 

      My mother never did survive my father’s death.  All she was concerned about then was getting us kids through school and married and off of her responsibility.  She just had no interest in life at all.  She took good care of us and she was home and didn’t have to go out to work.  The lumber company allowed her $500 a year and then the rest of us, we all had to go to work because we couldn’t live off of that. Father had had $1500 in life insurance and that was quite a bit.  The lumber company said they would pay all of the burial expenses.  We didn’t have too many doctor bills, he was only sick about three weeks and he was home all that time.  That way she could keep all of the insurance money. But the lumber company took the money and borrowed it from her and paid her interest on it.  And then they would pay it [the principal amount] back if, as and when she wanted it.  I don’t think we ever got it back until Jennie went to school.  It was only there and we were only drawing interest on it until then.  When Uncle Alec was wanting to only pay the interest on it, I said that he had to pay the interest and the principal because Jennie needed it.  I didn’t need it because I was working at the bank right out of the high school.
   [ When asked about all the family pictures taken, she responded....]    They took lots of pictures in those days. There was a photographer in town and families would have their picture taken quite regularly.  Families would have their picture taken and when a new child came along they would have a baby picture taken, then when the child was about 6 or 8 months old, then they would again when the children got a little older.   I had my picture taken once with Clyde, and Jennie had hers taken on a separate one and Leora on a separate one.  Millie and Florence were on one together, I think it was their gradation one.  They graduated just one year apart.  There was only two years of high school when they went through.  These particular pictures spoken of were taken right after father died. 
     Florence had had her two years of high school the year Father died.  And he wasn’t feeling very good and mother had poor health, she had had this baby [Leora] in June and he was having heart trouble in December.  Since Florence had graduated from high school, Father promised her if she would stay home with Mother for that one year and help mother with the baby, with him not well.  He would send her over to BYU the next year.  Millie was finishing high school.  But he died and Florence didn’t get to go to BYU.  She and Millie both got married real young, they didn’t wait like I did.    
     [When asked about school, she responded.....]   I just went to the regular school all of the grades.  When we were six years old we went to a kindergarten and then we went to the first grade when we were seven.   Dad died when I was in the first grade.
      I was baptized by Elisha Bolly. The parents didn’t do much of the baptizing in those days. The third ward was in charge of the baptism that day, and so the bishop of that ward, John R. Henry, was the one that confirmed me.  I was baptized in May.  They just had baptisms once a month them.  I wore my cousin’s pajama like things to be baptized in.  It was in a font in the chapel. 

     The old Harrington school was just eight rooms in the top and eight in the bottom.  Now there has been eight more rooms built on.  But at that time, there was an old building that they called the Science Hall.  And they added on to the Harrington School so it was connected with a hallway.  I remember because I went to some classes in the old Science building. We had two classes in the room at the time, and we would stay in the same room all the time.  We had two third grade and two fourth grade classes and they didn’t have enough for more classes.  So they made one room with third grade on one side and fourth grade on the other side.  That was the class I was in for the third grade. One day the teacher told me she was going to move me up to the fourth grade.  So I was moved to the other side of the room.  I told my mother and she said she didn’t want me to be moved up.  But Mother never spoke to the teacher about it and I never told the teacher what Mother said.  So I did the third and fourth grades in one year.  Having done so, I got through the eighth grade in eight years and not nine years. Harrington school was about five grades there.  The Fork School had three rooms down stairs and three rooms upstairs.  I was there for fifth, sixth and seventh grades.  In 1912 they built a new high school and so the eighth grade went up there and had the four grades of the high school at the new school because they had more room up there.   I had four years of high school.  I had two years of typing  in school. I had an extra year and didn’t get any credit for the second year because I had all of the credit they would allow me.  But I got the privilege of going in just to keep in practice. And I was doing work for some of the school teachers that they wanted done typing. I went in once a day for about a forty-five minute period to go in just to keep in practice.  I guess that was a little against the rules and regulations, I guess.  There was one other boy and I that wanted a commercial arithmetic class and they said that they couldn’t teach a class with just two in there.  So the teacher went over to the BYU and took a course over there and bought the book for the Leo and I.  So we had to work right in the class with the other students and Leo and I couldn’t get in at the same time either.  So we would go into a regular bookkeeping class and the teacher would give us what help we needed individually.  But we had to do most of it ourselves and it was a good course. I am glad that I took it. The High School was pretty advanced with classes.   I didn’t go to college even though I got a scholarship to the U of U.  I was second in the high school.   One boy was ahead of me.  My average was 93.15 and his was 93.3.  We were so close in grades that they had both of us represent the class.  I had to give a speech at graduation.  I think I worried more about that than anything during the whole school year.  They had the graduation at the Tabernacle.  We had 45 graduate in our class. That was the biggest class yet for the high school.   Each year there was a few more graduates.  Alpine and Highland students were bussed down for the high school.  The first school bus was a sheep camp type wagon.  It was a covered wagon and they had a row of seats on each side.  I never did ride in it, but I did see it.  I really liked school.
      We had Primary and MIA on weekdays.  On Sunday we had Sunday school in the mornings and then had Sacrament Meeting in the afternoon or evenings.  I went through the Primary and MIA.  They had YWMIA and YMMIA.  We used to have it on Tuesday nights.  They did things similar to now.  We didn’t do as much outside though.  We did some class work and gospel learning. They didn’t have seminary until I was out of high school.

      I used to come home for lunch from school.  But in high school when I got a job, I would stay at school during lunch and work on school work for part of the lunch time during my last year of school.  It was funny, at the main entrance of the building was a the double door.  But everyone would go in the West Entrance.  The stairway went off of the hall and for our senior year, a bunch of us girls would go down to the bottom of the stair way and sit on the stairs to eat our lunches.  We would start at one end and take a bite of the lunch and pass the lunch on to the next person. We would pass it down the whole row and each one would take a bite of the others lunches.  We got so we would tell them what kind of sandwich to bring in their lunches.  There was about eight of us. The teachers would say why don’t you get into the lunch room or something, but they would not bother us because we were seniors.  I used the extra time at lunch for studying.   I was working at the Drug Store while I was in the high school and I would work from 4 to 10 o’clock each night after school.
      When asked what they did as young children in their free time, she responded....]   When we were little we would study at nights the lesson from school.  In the summer we would play games and that around outside.  Hide and seek was one of the games. We would come up to the corner and the light poles were out in the middle of the intersection at that time.  The poles would run down the middle of the street and there was also horses driving {because there wasn’t cars then} on both sides of the street and we would always come up to that corner and we used to run around them.  But when it got dark I would get scared and I would quit.  I never did any traveling with the family as a little kid. It was horse and buggy or on the railroad.
    Uncle Will was good to us.  He was running the drug store and Uncle Alec was running the lumber yard here.   Uncle Will was the younger brother and Uncle Alec was older.  Grandpa run it about two years and then he give it up and they sold it. When they sold the lumber yard,  they opened up a general merchandise store in Pleasant Grove and later they had a drug store over there too.  So they had quite a bit of business.  Once the lumber yard in American Fork was sold, all of their business interest went to Pleasant Grove.  My cousin went over there and worked for Uncle Alec at the lumber yard, he gave her a job.  I was quite annoyed and I complained to my mother about Uncle Alec not giving me a job.  Of course her family was big and she needed the job too.  Uncle Will gave me a job.  We weren’t partners with Uncle Will at all.  But he was good to us.  I worked in the drug stores for the last three years I went to high school.  I would go down there at 4:00.  I would come home about 10:00 at night, and all by myself I would walk home at night. 
    Jennie worked at the Drug Store too. She really might have put more time in at the drug store than I did because I went to the bank as soon as I got out of school.
     One time I was working over at the canning factory in the office for two or three summers.  We had an Uncle Alec that lived in Pleasant Grove and he got my a job over there.  I worked two or three summers over there before I finished high school.  And the last year, they made me promise to stay through the tomato run.  School started and I had to miss three weeks of school.  I went and registered for my classes and then told them I had to stay at the canning factory until this run was through, which would be until the frost came.   That was when the tomatoes would be done.  I guess if I ever prayed for frost, that was the time I did.  I missed three weeks when I came back to school.   I had had Algebra and so had registered for Chemistry.  The Chemistry teacher, he wouldn’t let me in his class. He said that he wasn’t going to go back and pick that up.  The principal said the you’ve got to let her in this is her senior year and she needs it to graduate.   She is registered for it.  He went and checked on all of my records back for the previous three years and he said what she lacks to qualify in Science, she has enough Mathematics to qualify.  So I didn’t have to take the Chemistry class.  But my brother Clyde, he took Chemistry, of course he went into the drug business and he needed some of that.  When I was taking one of my science classes I would ask him what I needed to know and he would tell me instead of me having to read the book.  Those were some hectic days.

     We spent more time with Grandpa and Grandma Shelley than with Grandpa and Grandma Thornton.  We would go to Grandma Shelley’s a lot, that was mother’s mother.  But our relationship with father’s side wasn’t much, part of it was due to my dad’s death so early.  We lived closer to the Thornton’s and mother was still involved with the lumber business that they were in.  But as families go, the Shelley’s were closed than the Thornton’s were.  We would have family dinners with the Shelley’s.  I don’t remember eating meals in Grandma Thornton’s house.  We walked wherever we went and sometimes we would walk down and stop in at Grandma Thornton’s for a little while.  She would sometimes, give us a cookie or something, but we never ate meals there.  Grandpa Thornton was a business man.  He would sit for hours at Uncle Will’s store and talk to Ben Greenwood.  Mother said she didn’t know what John [Father] would have to say about his dad wasting so much time doing nothing.  John was always busy.         Mother’s sister lived down the block a little ways and we would go there a lot.  Grandpa Shelley was a farmer. He was quite a very, very fine man and I have a lot of respect for him. And Grandma Shelley was pretty dominating down there, as the English women were.  She ran the house.
     Mother had an older sister, we called her Aunt Lide, she married Joe Wilde and they never had any children.  We went to their home a lot and they were good to us.
    [ After Aunt Lide in their family,]  then there was mother, and then Aunt June.  She married Arthur Wright and they went to Bingham to live and he worked in the laundry.  He had a laundry business in Salt Lake and then went to Brigham to live and did laundry there.  Bingham was a wild place to live in those days.  There was only one narrow street going up all the way. The Denver and Rio Grande Railroad came into the lower part of Bingham and Aunt June lived just over across the creek and across the road and then you went up about eight or ten steps to get to her house.   She was up on the side of the hill.  You could reach out their bathroom window and touch the mountain on the side.  I don’t know how they ever got the house put in there.  Up above there was another rail road
 track on the side of the mountain. That was an electric one.  The Denver and Rio Grande came in across the street from where she lived.  Uncle Arthur ran the laundry there for a long time. Later on, they closed the laundry and he would just do the pickups. He would put in on the train and ship it into Salt Lake to have the laundry done.  A few days later it would come back on the train.   Bingham was something else.  We went up there about once a year to visit Aunt June.  They would come down quite often.   And in 1920, one of their family died.  Aunt June had a son, the same age as me, Steve, he was about eighteen when he died.  He had a boy friend that he was as close as could be, and they each had their girl friends.  I don’t know what happened, but the one girl Steve was supposed to marry, he didn’t marry.  Later on he married the girl friend of his boy friend.     Uncle Arthur was the bishop up there.  The church was up on the side of the hill about halfway up.  We went up about 20 steps to a platform and then up about 20 more steps to the church. We went up there for about three funerals.  Steve had died, and then J.S. who was Jennie’s age died  .J.S. got kicked with a horse.  There was a man who lived just down the hill from Aunt June and he was a blacksmith. He shoed the horses.  J.S. liked to stand and watch the man shoe the horses, one day he got kicked with a horse.  And they claim that contributed to his death.  That was in December 1920 just before Christmas, and 11 months later the other son died and 11 months later, her husband died.  That left just Glen, the boy in the middle and he was going to school at that time in the University of Utah.  And Aunt June was left up there alone. She moved down and lived with Aunt Lide.  Glen went on to School and would come down here on the weekends. She lost two boys and a husband in 22 months.  She did a lot of crocheting and hand work to occupy her time.

       Leora was the baby of our family.  Her death was a Halloween tragedy.  I had had this little Halloween costume mother had made me.   It was made of that cheap material.  It was a little Indian costume with sleeves on it. The sleeves had fringes on them. They had used it to dress up on Halloween time or two and this year Leora put it on. She went over to Aunt Nell’s.  We had a gate between us, and we had a land that we both shared in between us, half and half.  Our chicken coops went over into their yards and barns.  Leora was over there at Aunt Nell’s.  Mother went outside with her.  Leora had this parchment Jack ‘o Lantern.  Millie and Warren had been to Salt Lake and gotten married.  She [Leora] was the little girl in the family and they had gotten this and brought it home to her and she had used it.  She got it out for the second time.  It was kind of parchment, it had a hole in the top, but didn’t have a lid on it.  It had a candle in there.  You lit the candle to light up the pumpkin.  She went over to Aunt Nell’s.  Aunt Nell had quite a family of children, the youngest was about a year old.  Leora was trying to show it [the jack ‘o lantern] to the baby.  And she kind of reached down to hold it and show the baby that it wouldn’t hurt her, because the baby was kind of scared of it. The fringe on the sleeve on the costume caught onto the flame in the jack ‘o lantern there.  And her dress caught on fire. Aunt Nell was in the bathroom giving one of her children a bath.  Leora ran outside and got frightened and run back and there was some boys playing Halloween on the other side of the fence.  One of the boys saw her come out of the house and saw her dress on fire. He jumped over the fence and by then she went back in the house.  By then all the kids were screaming and Aunt Nell came out and she had a towel in her hand and she wrapped it around Leora and they boys were there by then. Mother had walked around to the front of the house after she watched Leora go over there. She had made sure that Leora got into Aunt Nell’s house and then came around the front of the house. There were some kids out there Halloweening and Mother was watching what they were doing.  Mother saw her run out of Aunt Nell’s house with the dress on fire.  Mother ran through the lot and the gate to get over there.  But Leora had gone back in the house, and came out the second time. Mother was over there.  That was terrible.  They brought her home, they didn’t have any hospitals there.  They called the doctor and had two doctors come down there. They were peeling, I remember them peeling the skin off of her arm.  Her arm was really the only thing that was burned.  Her hair wasn’t burned and her head wasn’t burned, she had a tight little cap on.  And her face wasn’t burned.  I remember her  asking the doctors if the skin would grow back on, cause she was watching them work on her.  She finally passed out. They didn’t have anything to give her like they do now days to put them out.  She lived about 23 hours after that. That was a Saturday night and she died that Sunday night.  She was right there at home when she died.  The doctors said that it was the shock of the whole thing that killed her, they said the burns could have been controlled. They were using olive oil and lime water. I had never heard tell of them before, but that was what they were using, olive oil and lime water.  But I remember him telling mother several years later, if we would have had the stuff that we have now, we could have saved her. It was the shock more than the burns.  The skin was burned, but it wasn’t too deep down. It was the outer layer.  She would have had some scars.  Leora was six in June, she had started school and loved school. She just loved school. That was all she could talk about as she was there conscious or unconscious.  They just had her there on two chairs put together with pillows on them. They had her on the kitchen table in the first place and then put her on the two chairs.  I was 13 at the time she died and Jennie was 10.

      [talking about the picture of Leora hanging on her wall].  My mother’s sister Aunt Lide didn’t have any children, but she raised a nephew that was her husband’s relative. He, the nephew, when he got old, joined the Navy.  When he was over in China, he had Aunt Lide send the baby picture of Leora and he had that painted over there in China. It was all rolled up in a metal coil when it was brought here.  It is oil on silk. It is really a work of art.  It was painted by the people in China.  It wasn’t framed.  Jennie got the picture after Clyde died and Maude remarried and they were going through some of the old family things.  Jennie got some of the family things.   One time when Elaine was going through some of the pictures, she found this picture and had it framed.   At the same time she found that picture on the wall of my father.   (The picture of my father was taken in 1893, before I was born.)
     [Talking about how she got her first job at the bank.]   The Chipman people had stock in the canning factory and they were over there at a stock holders meeting and saw me working over at there one day. Mr. Chipman saw me and wanted to talk to me at the office one day. He was the counselor in the bishopric and he knew me and I knew him.  I was kind of close with Mary and Helen, his daughters.  One day at Church, he said when I got through school to come in and see him.  I never applied for a job.  I graduated from High school on Friday and on Monday, I went up to the bank and he wasn’t there.  But his brother was there.  He said, are you Edith. I said yes and he said come here and there’s the typewriter.  I had  learned typing in school. I didn’t have shorthand though in High school. I took a correspondence course once in shorthand, but I never finished it.  I didn’t need it at the bank.  I used to write it down on the type writer as they talked. That saved a lot of time.  I went up to the other bank and they had a secretary there that all she did was type. She just worked part time, and she kind of wanted to quit. She would come just a half day. Then I wrote my own letters.  I had a good experience at banking and I never regretted what I did, but it lasted longer than I thought it was going to.  It took me a long time to get married.

     I think Leora’s death contributed to Mother’s death.  She never did survive that. That was a terrible thing. We all felt it could have been avoided. An accident could always have been allowed if you knew a head of time, but that wasn’t.  Mother never did survive that. Between father’s death and that.  She eventually died of kidney problems and heart trouble.  Jennie could have inherited the kidney problems from her parents.     Mom died in 1922, I remember is was in the afternoon.  I was 20 and Jennie was 17. I was on my own when mother died.  Jennie wasn’t, she was still in school.  Mother had this money from the lumber yard, it was $500 a year. And Uncle Alec wanted to close it out after mother died.  I said that he couldn’t because Jennie had to have some help until she gets through school. Cause I don’t need it, I’m working and Clyde doesn’t need it, but Jennie is entitled to it.  My dad put in his life at the lumber yard, and they owe dad.  The investment was there and so they still paid the $500 a year and that was what Jennie had to live on. They quit paying the dividend to Jennie as soon as she got married.  I’m not so sure they didn’t quit before.  I didn’t get anything after I went to the bank.   After mother died, we stayed there in the family house for awhile.  Then Clyde got married divided off the house and took the two west wings. That marriage didn’t last.  She was a lovely girl, but he didn’t have sense enough to treat her right. He just wanted everything his way and to be waited on.  She was a lovely girl.  She was a Jones girl from Lehi.  They got divorced and she died not too long after that. She didn’t have good health.  She really I think shehad a health problem.  But he knew it when he married her.  I was always very much annoyed at him other that.  I wasn’t really very enthused about his marriage to Maude.  Of course he met Maude.  Maude came to town about the time I went on my mission.  I remember because the girls in the ward gave a party for me and they invited Maude.  That was the first I had met Maude was at this party. That was when I went on my mission. I didn’t know her much, Clyde married her after that.  Maude kind of put Clyde in his place, I think, I don’t know. Clyde died young and then she married a kid that was a lot younger than she was.  I don’t know, they stayed with it, but it seemed ridiculous.
    Clyde and Maude were down there [ at the home place] and that was the reason I left there, and I guess it didn’t work out so good for her [Jennie].  Aunt Jennie Bate, Father’s sister lived in the next house.  Elmer Bate was her husband. They had a daughter, Carol [or Cleo??], about the same age as Jennie and she spent quite a bit of time at their house.  Clyde and Maude had taken the home where mom lived.  And Florence kept wanting some money as her share of the home.  Florence wanted it right off the bat, and I said that she couldn’t have it until Jennie was through and settled.  We are not going to break up the home until Jennie is through school.  Mom had said to make sure that Jennie got through high school and as much college as we could get. I never got my college, I had a scholarship, but I didn’t take it.  Jennie did go for awhile, she got her teaching certificate, which was about two years.  I don’t know that she was ever a certified teacher, because she got married about the time that she should have been at that.  When Jennie was dating Frank, I think our grandparents did like Frank.  Jennie lived with Aunt Jen Bates for a few months before she got married. She lived at the house, but she stayed with Aunt Jennie a lot.       I had made up my mind that I couldn’t tolerate what was going on down there with Clyde and I was going to leave home for some where.  At first, I always wanted to go to Logan to School. And I got a scholarship for the University of Utah when I graduated from High School but I couldn’t use it.  Clyde was going up there [when I graduated].  He had been up there one year for pharmacy and he had to have two years.  Mother had helped Clyde through his first year and she said that if I would help him through the second year, then he could help you. He never did.  I helped him through his second year, but he never did help me.  I don’t know.  I didn’t like the set up that was around home there.  First I was going to go to school and get my education.  I always wanted an education, and I never got it.  It was Warren and Millie that decided that they would rather have me go on a mission than go to school. I don’t know why. I think Warren had talked to the bishop because the bishop called me in.  And I went on what was supposed to by a eighteen month mission.  They called the girls for eighteen months then.
     Jenny and Frank were going steady when I left on my mission in 1925.   I was on my mission and the next thing I know, they wrote and told me they were getting married.  They were married while I was on my mission. 

     I left in November of 1925.  I did one week in the Mission Training in Salt Lake.  It had only started about a year or so before I went in to there.  It was really quite new, and it was just one week.  You went to the mission home on State Street and we went in there and it had only been operating for about a year or so. Before that you just went up to the church office and were set apart and went on your mission and they took you to the train and that was the way it was.  We did go to the mission home and stayed about a week.  General Authorities at the church office building would set the missionaries apart.  It was General Authorities who set us apart, I don’t remember who it was.  But my Mission President was John H. Taylor.  He was a grandson of the John Taylor that was President of the Church after Brigham Young.  His wife was Rachel Grant Taylor, she was Heber J. Grant’s oldest daughter.  I lived with them for about sixteen months when I lived at the mission home. They had some fun stories to tell.  Brother Taylor was a nice man. He died before she did after they came home.  After they came home, they operated the missionary home up there for several years.  And I saw them a time or two after that at reunions.  They came down here a time or two. He was eventually an assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve and he came down here to Stake Conferences. And his brother in law, Clifford Young, lived down here the third house down. He was a grandson of Brigham Young’s brother, Joseph, and Mrs. Young was Heber J. Grant’s daughter.  I think Heber had five daughters and no sons. The oldest was the mission president’s wife and the next was Edith, Mrs. Young. He had one named Lucy, who they nicknamed Ludy.
     I went to Chicago to the headquarters and then they sent me up to Milwaukee and I was up there for about six weeks and there, and then in Racine for about eight months. Milwaukee was a big city. I didn’t like Milwaukee, we had to ride the street cars and I would get so sick.  I would get so sick, that when I got home at night I couldn’t eat.  The street cars would make me sick.  There was the south branch and the north branch in Milwaukee.  The south was near the university and was mostly students that were out there.   When they asked me to go to Racine, I said “Is it a smaller place?”  and they said “Yes, and that I could walk more there.”  So I got along better in Racine. We lived out in the west side, the newer part, in a residential area. And that’s where we did our tracting.  So I got along a lot better there.
     I was on my mission on a summer assignment out of Chicago at the time they [Frank and Jennie] were married.  I got back down to Chicago and got my mail.  We were gone up there about a week or ten days.  That was what they called a country trip, I only did it once.  The Elders did the job each summer.  But I did go once.   
     After I had been out for 10 months, I was called into the mission office. I was in the office for sixteen months and didn’t get out of there.  I even worked on Saturdays and Mondays.  We were supposed to have one day a week for a Prep Day, to wash your hair and do a few things.
     I used to have to go down town to the bank every Thursday, and take the money down with me.  The Elders used to do it and then there wasn’t Elders, so I had to do it.  They used to take it in a briefcase, and I worried about a briefcase.  So I would put it in an envelope and in a bigger envelope and would carry it in my hands. I would go to the elevated train and walk about a half of block.  The elevated train went right down into town and circled and went right back out again. And they had a line for the South that did the same thing.  It came up from south up to the loop, they called it.  It looped and then back out of town.  But if you wanted to go on the loop, you had to transfer that looped around.  That elevated train handled an awful lot of transportation in Chicago. In New York, they had subways at the time.

    I paid for my mission out of what I had saved up while working at the bank between high school and the time I left on my mission.  The mission used to take about forty five to fifty dollars a month when we were renting places.  When I went into the mission office, they would just charge us fifteen dollars a month.  That was the only way I could stay that long, I had planned on eighteen months.  We would get a lot of free meals when we were out with the people, but in the mission office we had no chance to get anything like that.  I stayed in the mission office and work daily from 8:00 in the morning to 5 or 6:00 at night.  We would tract a little on Sunday afternoons.
     I went in as the record clerk in the first place.  The branches didn’t do nothing, they sent it all to the mission office and it all had to be done there.  I was doing that and then the secretary didn’t like the office work.  So they let him go back out. So President Taylor asked if I would handle the secretary work until they could get a replacement.  Well, they never did get a replacement. I did both jobs for awhile.  They finally got some help to take over the record keeping, but I had to do the financial all of the rest of the time I was there.  I knew how to do it and I didn’t have any problems with that.  I did it for sixteen months. President Taylor didn’t have any bookkeepers in his mission.  He said, “ I’m not going to be caught here at the end of the year without somebody to do the reports.”  He was a dentist and not a bookkeeper.  I had gone in to the mission home in September so I got all of the reports for the first year.  I should have been released about May or June of the next year. But I still stayed on. He never said anything until September, that was when he said he didn’t want to be caught at the end of the year.  He asked if I would stay.  I said if the bank will hold my job.  I said I asked them to hold a job for me until I got back. So he called my Stake President, who was the President of the Bank, and he said yes they would hold the job. This other girl had accepted a call to go on a mission, out to this same mission, and they just postponed her departure.  She left as soon as I came home, she left and I went to work.  She was working somewhere else, but she worked in the bank while I was gone and she left and went to the same mission when I came home and went back to work at the bank.  She went up and worked in Michigan and Indiana, I never did work in Indiana.  It was a big mission, there was six big states out there and they had some big cities out there. 
     Radio came while I was on my mission. My first experience was at the mission home in Chicago. I didn’t know what it was all about. This little thing that they would turn on and off and it would talk.  Then I went up to Milwaukee to work and just one member up there had one. And when we went to their home, once in awhile they would turn it on and we could listen.  But I didn’t have much experience with it until I got home from my mission.  Then Millie and Warren had a radio.
       I came home in January 1928.   While I was on my mission nobody died.   So I guess I should have stayed.  Just awhile after I got home, Uncle Joe died and then Aunt Lide died and Aunt June lived in Aunt Lide’s home for a long time.
        Clyde had married and was living in the home, so Warren and Millie offered me a place to live and I lived with them.  Aunt Hadie and Uncle Will lived close there too and they offered me a place to stay.  She wrote me a letter and offered to have me stay with them. She had two sons, Ken and Bill, and two daughters, Lucille and Lella.  But I went to live with Millie and Warren.  I thought it would be a few years, and I lived there for nineteen years.  Warren was a mortician and undertaker.  They were sure good to me. They had three boys and not any girls.  One by one they [the boys] all got married.  And there wasn’t anybody home there, but me for awhile.

      After my mission, I took a week off and stopped and met Millie and she got on the train with me and we went to California and visited Jennie.   Jennie and Frank had gone to California on their honeymoon.  Frank had a brother living down there, Bert Greenwood.  And they persuaded Frank to stay. Frank was kind of in between jobs.  He had been offered some jobs in training up here.  But he took a job with the county surveying down there and then stayed down there about 18 years, I think, before they came back up here.    I knew that if I got back on a job I wouldn’t get a vacation for a year, so I said I wanted to go see her [Jennie before I started back to work at the bank].   Jennie and I were really quite close.  She was born in 1905 and father died in 1910 and she hardly remembered him. 
     I went just about every year down to California to see them while they were there.  I used to take my vacations about every year, at various times of the year.  I went on the bus only once, but the bus broke down and I said never again.  We were doing okay on the bus here and went down to Las Vegas. When we got there, there was a bus coming east out of Los Angeles that was having trouble, and they got as far as Las Vegas.  They were having trouble and the bus driver persuaded our bus driver to trade with him.  He said you can make this back to California all right, you won’t have any problem with them.  He told our bus driver what the problem was.  But he said that he didn’t want to go out across the desert in Nevada with it.  So our bus driver traded.  And we hadn’t driven, I don’t think about three or four hours, before it broke down on us.  We had troubles and were stalled overnight.  Finally we had to wait for a bus to come out of Los Angeles and pick us up.  It was 4:00 in the morning when the bus came to get us and we were supposed to have been there at 8:00 the night before.  We got in about 8:00 in the morning. But Jennie and them had been calling the station to find out. That was one thing, they didn’t go down to the bus station and wait.  They were calling and finding out.  They were there to meet me when I got there. But that was a long trip. That was the only time on the bus.  I went on the train several times.
     I haven’t had much of a family life.  I have had a hard time holding onto family. My grandparents all out lived my parents.  My dad died in 1910 , mother in 1922, Grandpa Shelley in 1920, before mother, and Grandma Shelley in 1928.  Uncle Joe and Aunt Lide all died about the same time right after my mission. 
        After the trip to California to see Jennie, we came back and I went to the bank to work.  I bought my first car right after I got home from the mission.  My parents never owned a car.  My first car was a Chevrolet.  It was $750.  I was a Chevrolet Coupe, and that was a mistake.  It was a mistake because you would always want to take more [people with you].  You didn’t want to go places by yourself, and you wanted to take others with you, but you only had room to take one other person with you in a coupe.  I didn’t like it, it was a two seater.  I didn’t have it very long and I traded it off and got me a four door sedan. I had that car for 10-12 years.  I think that was the car that took me through the war times.    
      Sometime around 1926-1930, I bought my first home.  It was a home on Second West. It was rented when I bought it.  I bought it off the Chipman people who owned it.  I bought it for $2600. That was a lot of money in those days.  I couldn’t afford to furnish it at the time, so I continued to rent it to the people who were renting there when I bought it.  The people who were renting it were paying $20 a month in rent.

     I took some classes for business college and banking.  AIB, the American Institute of Banking classes one time.   It was one of the largest educational organizations in the United States at one time.  I think they are still operating. It was owned and controlled by the banks and I took several classes through them. They would have them over at the BYU and BYU instructors would be teaching them.  They would line in the county here and we would go over there.  I think I went four or five times, that was after we got automobiles and could go over there.  I would go to some of them by myself, after I got my car.  But that was after high school and that was before I got married.
       I got through the depression okay because I had a job and employment.  But it was awful hard on a lot of people.  There was a lot of unemployment and jobs were hard to get and were not big paying jobs.  I worked all the way through and that’s when the Chipman Bank  went out of business.  They started having troubles and closed in 1932.  I stayed and worked with the banking department for nearly two years liquidating it.  That was heart breaking to see the officers and all of them that I had worked with were all out of the bank and gone.  The one Chipman man had died before that, Jim Chipman, but Wash Chipman, it was hard on him.  We were all out of jobs.  I stayed there and worked and then they were going to liquidate and transfer the business up to the Salt Lake Office.  They offered me a job up there, but I would have to ride the Orem Train up there and I didn’t want to have to do that. Clifford Young offered me a job, I was getting $125 a month and they cut me back to $75 a month.  They offered $125 up at the Salt Lake Office.  But I didn’t want to have to drive to Salt Lake either, so I took the job with Clifford Young.  They had a man there who didn’t do half the work that I did and they didn’t want him to know how much they were paying me, so they would pay me some under the table.  They had an insurance agency on his own and he paid my out of that for a little while. They gave me better pay though after no time at all.  I stayed there, all together I had 63 years in banking.  I am still a bank director now. [Interview in August 1996]  I took two years off for a mission, so the 63 years was over a period of 65 years.    My grandpa had been a director in the first bank, my Uncle Will was a director in the other bank.  But they neither one had anything to do with me working there.  They didn’t even know I was there until I had been there for some time. So they didn’t have anything to do with that.
     Jenny and Frank were moving back up here, it was when the war kind of broke out and Frank moved back up here. The steel plant was going. He got on there. I wanted them to move in my place. [the one I was renting out].  There was a Roy Hamshire living in it at the time, he ran a warehouse that bought and sold produce.  He had just gotten married, quite late in life, and he was living in there.  He was the one who was renting it when I bought it.  When Jenny and them came up I told him that I wanted the place for them. He said, “I’m not moving out.  I will pay you $25 a month, but I won’t move out.”  I said, “Roy that’s not the point. They’re coming up here from California to live and I want that home for them.” I had wanted it for myself, but I can’t afford to furnish it. They are coming and I wanted it for them.  He said, “Well, I’m not going to move out.”   So I went to the attorney and had the attorney write him a letter.  So the attorney wrote him a letter and he moved out.  He made a little living quarters in the warehouse and moved into that.  Later now he bought a house a few houses down from here.  He was just onry and he was mad at me for getting him moved out. But I put Jenny and Frank in it.

      I met Lewis in the bank. He used to come in with his father to the bank in the first place. That was at the Chipman bank in the 1920's.  I used to wait on him, I knew just him name. I knew his brother quite well and I done business with him, but he was the last man on earth that I would have considered marriage with. He [Lewis’ brother] dealt in livestock and he was an outdoor livestock man.  He had a lovely wife, she died quite young, but he never did marry again.  He went quite steady with a girl over in Lehi.  He practically lived over there.  I think he stayed the night some times.  They never did marry, I never did figure out why they didn’t marry. I don’t know why unless he didn’t want to divide any cash with her.  He had a daughter, Fay, who married a John Clark from here.  She was an only daughter and kind of spoiled.  She was dating this John Clark and he went on a mission over to England.  And she got dating this other guy while he was gone on a mission.  And she married this other guy, and then he went on a mission after they were married. And John came home first because John had gone first, so she got a divorce from the first one and married John.   The daughter moved to Idaho.
          I knew of Lewis for a long time before we married, but I didn’t have any personal contact with him until  in 1947.  His first wife, Daisy, was a Kirkham over in Lehi, and her sister married Warren Anderson’s brother, Steve Anderson, and I knew this Lea, and she lived in the next house to Millie and Warren.  I knew Lea and I knew of Lewis more or less through Lea.  Daisy died in 1928, the same year as Grandma Shelley.  They both died in the same week around Christmas time.
    Daisy’s niece, Nelda, married a young man by the name of Layton and they lived up in Layton, Utah.  They had only been married a little bit. He went in World War I in 1918 and went in the Army.  It was one of those when they decided to get married before he went away.  He never came back. He was on a troop train over in France and the Germans blew up the train and killed a good many of them on the troop train.    Then Lewis married Nelda and she kind of raised those kids.  His second wife died a year before we were married. 
      He asked me for a date in the bank for the first time. Our first date was in April and we were married August. I think we went to a movie at Orem or something for the first date.  For the second one, we went into Salt Lake for a play and out to dinner.   One time we went over to Provo and then drove up the Provo Canyon a ways.  He pulled off the road and that is where he proposed to me.  Right there in Provo Canyon. He gave me the ring in July.  We had to wait until August for the Temple to open.  Because the Temple wasn’t open in July.  The temple was closed the month of July for renovations and stuff like that.   We were married the first date the Temple opened, 11 of August in 1947.   Millie went to the wedding and Jennie and Frank were living here at the time.  I had had some dating before Lewis, but it didn’t amount to much.  I didn’t have very many dates. A couple of guys I think were interested in marriage, but I didn’t feel like they were the ones.  I didn’t know who the right one was, but I found out.  Lewis was a good man, he was special. 
      Lewis was born and raised in Lehi and he had a farm.  He raised fruit and had honey bees as his big business. And he had had nursery stock over in Lehi.  He told me one time they would extract a ton of honey a day for two or three day. They would do it once a year.  He had five girls and they would help him and he had some hired help.  That’s a lot of honey. The honey was the main source of his income. He used to be called, Strawberry Chris, because he raised a lot of strawberries and would sell them to the neighbors and all over town.  His first wife died and left him six children.  Cleo was only 3 at the time.  Cleo was born in 1925 and his first wife died in 1928.  The grandmother was living with them at the time and took care of the children. But can you imagine Lewis trying to look after the six kids and the grandmother.  The grandmother was more work than the children to tell you the truth.  It was his wife’s mother.  She had daughters living around too, but she figured she need to help look after him, I think, but she made more problems than she solved. 

     All the girls were married except for Cleo, and she was planning on getting married and he sold the farm and moved into an apartment down on Second South.  He was living there. The girls thought he could build a little grocery store and live in the back of it. They had a little grocery store in the neighborhood where they lived. They had dome some of their shopping at this little store and they thought it was an ideal thing for him to do.
    Well it was up there right by the high school. The first day he opened, the high school kids came in during recess and loaded up their hands full and walked out without paying for it. He was frantic and didn’t know what to do. After that he locked the doors during recess. [Eventually] they fixed a window that they could serve them through.  He had a porch out there. He didn’t run it but a day or two before he knew that he didn’t like it.  The girls thought it was ideal and would run itself, but it didn’t.  He had the store when we got married.  Cleo was there at first, but then she got married right after we got married. She got married just three of four weeks after we did.  She worked in the store for awhile and then she got a job at the steel company down here and Lewis got another girl, Reba Robertson, who worked for him. She was really good. She could handle all of the high school kids.  She would give the things to them through the window he had fixed up.  That way they had to put their money down before she would give them the things they ordered. It worked out all right.  But he didn’t really like it.  He kept staying that he didn’t like it.  I said, “Well I’m not giving up my bank job, if you don’t like the store.  If you don’t like the store, you can sell it.  But I’m not going to quit the bank and work here.”  There wasn’t enough money in there anyway for what I was making at the bank. 
      One day there was a man who came into the bank. He had lived here before and had a big poultry farm. He sold it out and went on a mission and when he came back he went up to Idaho and we thought he was going to live up there.  But he didn’t like it and came back down here and came in the bank and said that he was looking for a place to live. I asked if he was going to go back into the poultry business and he said no he didn’t want to.  He said he would like to get into something that he and his wife could handle together.  So I told him about the grocery store for sale.  That he could operate the store in the front and live in the back. He said that sounded good and so I gave him the address and called Lewis and told him that I had just sent up a man that wanted to look at the because you said that you wanted to sell. The man was gone about a half hour and Lewis called and said, “Edith, I sold the place.”  He didn’t like the place at all.  I think that was the biggest mistake that he made in his whole life. The girls wanted him to buy the store, but they weren’t there to help him run the store.  I told him I wasn’t going to leave my bank job to take on that job.  And so he sold it.  We had been there about a year.  I asked “Where are we going to live?”  He said, “I don’t know but I am going to get out of here and sell this.” I said, “well, I’ll see if Jenny and Frank will move out of this place down here.”   It was the place down on Second West that I bought. Jennie and Frank were living there at the time. So Jennie and Frank started looking for a place to move so we could move into that house. I had to give them time, they arranged to buy a place down in the Columbia Village, just down here across the road from where Ray and Shirley live now. 
    It told them nearly a month to find a place so we took a little honeymoon trip back East.  He had a daughter living back there in Missouri and we went and stayed for a couple weeks. Then we stayed with Millie for about a week until they were able to move out. 

     He spent the winter remodeling and fixing it up.  It had kind of a porch on the back of it and he closed that all it. Then we put on another bedroom.  Then it had three bedrooms.  He spent a lot of time and money in remodeling it. He fixed the interior quite a bit more.  All new cabinets in the kitchen.  It was a nice place, but it had been rented for quite a few years and it wasn’t in too good of shape.    We there until he wanted to get back in the bee business and we bought these two acres up here. [ a little ways out of American Fork.]
     We had to get out of the city a little ways to raise bees.  I was talking to one of the neighbors and he said he knew someone with some ground.  I wrote to him and he said yes he would sell.  We bought it for $750 for two acres.  About 7 years ago, I was over at the Jordan River Temple doing a session and a lady came up to me and said, “I don’t think you remember me, but we were the people who sold you the two acres.  We were back East in school and we were desperate.  We needed money and we didn’t know where to turn for it. You saved our lives.”  I said, “I never saved anybodies lives.”  She said, “ Yes you did. You bought the land from us when we needed the money.”  I said that it was the best things that ever happened to us because Lewis said he wanted a piece of property where he could have some bees and some trees.  We built the honey houses first and then moved up there.
    But he got where he couldn’t handle it.  The bees were too much for him and the two acres. He didn’t have any big equipment.  He just had a hand pushing tiller.  I wanted him to get a riding tractor but no he didn’t want to. He would hire the neighbor up there to do the planting and then he would do all of the cultivating and that was with a little push plow and that was too hard of work.  And he didn’t like it after he got up there.  He was disappointed in it.  I said, “Well, if you don’t like it up here, I’m not going to quit my bank, I’m not going to trade my bank job for taking care of bees.”   And it didn’t pay anything like the bank did, so I stayed at the bank.   He didn’t realize all of the work the girls had done that he was trying to do.   Finally he decided to sell that and give up the bees. I didn’t like the bees that well and he kept saying that he didn’t like them, so we got rid of them.   He did have a few over to his brother’s place, after he sold that, in Lehi.  They wouldn’t let him have bees here in the town.  He had a few over there for awhile and he finally got rid of those.   We lived up there for about eight years. 
     Elaine got married and went to Idaho. Frank Greenwood couldn’t figure out letting his daughter get married and going up to Idaho to live on a farm.  He and his family had been up there, when he was a youngster. They were kind of homesteading up there around in the Pocatello Area. He was raised up there as a little kid. It was hard going I guess. Right starting from scratch.  Developing the area, they didn’t have the machinery and such.  Frank’s memory of Idaho wasn’t good. They moved back down here later and he went to school here and graduated down here.  Frank took mostly correspondence like classes after high school. 
     One day a couple came in the bank and they were looking for a place and I told them we had a place for sale.  I called Lewis and said that I sent a couple there to look at the place because you said that you wanted to sell it. Pretty soon, he called and said that he had sold it.  I asked, “Where are we going to live?” And he said, “I don’t know but we are moving out of here.” 

    We’d been working on some house plans before then.  I had had this lot for several years.    I didn’t really want to start this one until we had the other one sold, so we would have the money.  I didn’t want to borrow the money to do it.  And so as soon as we sold it, we moved over on Fifth East and rented a place while we built this house. [The current house, Edith is living in. August 1996] I never did want to buy that place on Fifth East, we only rented it.  We built this one and I like this home.  We built it in 1959.  I like every bit of it.  We built the one up there too, [on the honey farm], but it wasn’t the home that this one is.  Lewis had built two homes over in Lehi, and remodeled one.  It was his father’s that he remodeled after his father died.  But he built two others over there.  This is the nicest of any he had, I really like this one.  I have no complaints.  He had a floor plan that we saw.  He saw a house up here on Fifth East that he liked.  It had the wide gables on it, and he liked that idea about it.  But the floor plans for this house called for four bedrooms and they were all small.  But I said that I would rather have a utility and bigger bedrooms.  So we made the two bedrooms and made them bigger up here.  Later on, we finished off the basement.  I have done most of the basement after he died.  But we did have some of it done before.  I wanted the utility upstairs.  Most people when they come, they just fall for the utility.  I never figured that I would want a utility in the basement.  And it is just right out the back door.  Lewis could come in from the garden and right into there and not have to come around and into the house.  He could come in not having to change his shoes and everything.
This has been a good home and I never wanted to change anything about it.  Now, I have a cleaning lady come in every two weeks to clean the house for me. 

Note:   I, Tammy Stevenson, tried to keep the story in a time line so it was easier to follow.  I also added those things in [....] to clarify a little bit.  I tried to use mostly direct quotes from Aunt Edith and she repeated herself sometimes twice within the same paragraph I left some of the repeats there.  I wasn’t sure if she was repeating herself to add emphasis or if she just hadn’t remembered that she all ready told me.   

No comments:

Post a Comment