Friday, January 30, 2009

Morgan 2: Harold Morgan, Part VIII

The depression was on in the 1930’s and The Deseret News had reduced even the low salaries it was paying. We lived in this large home for more than a year and then moved to a two story, four bedroom home three blocks west on Third Avenue. Here we stayed for another year then moved to a three bedroom home on Seventh Avenue and H Street. It was while we were here we had a narrow escape in an automobile accident. Mom and Paul were taking me to work, going west on Seventh Avenue when a car speeding south on F Street hit the rear fender of our car turning it upside down. Luckily no one was hurt but unluckily the fellow who hit us was on relief and had no insurance.

Paul in the navy.

Cal in Coast Guard uniform and his wife Christel.

Our next move was 79 D Street, opposite the home of Pres. J. Reuben Clark. It was while here that our two sons, Paul and Cal volunteered for military duty. Paul going to the navy and Cal to the Coast Guard. I made an unsuccessful attempt to get in the Intelligence service, being past the age limit. However I did carry a gun, taking a job in the auxiliary military police guarding industrial installations.

For several months I was stationed with five other men at the Mt. Dell Reservoir above Salt Lake City in Parley’s Canyon. It was a good assignment. Three of us had a camp in a small grove of trees and the deer hunting was fine.


It was while at D Street that our lovely daughter, Helen was married to William H. Ayrton, a young man in the Twentieth Ward. Mom served as secretary of the Ward Relief Society. She did an outstanding job and made friendships that have lasted until the present time.

It was while I was doing some publicity jobs after leaving The News that I broke my leg. Mom was forced to go to work and secured a position with the Auerbach company selling women’s shoes. She was soon a favorite in the store. I have been so proud of her all my life.

After the boys left for the service we moved to a place on Harmony Court, between Seventh and Eighth East Streets and facing South Temple Street.

It was while here that I secured a job with the Salt Lake Tribune. Because of the man power shortage during the war I did double duty. Often I worked 70 to 80 hours a week on the Tribune and Telegram. This was much the same pace until after the end of the war.

During 1949 I assisted in organizing the Salt Lake Newspaper Guild. Several previous attempts had failed. It was a bitter struggle but we were successful in forcing the company to jack up wages as much as 30 per cent. This also forced The News to raise salaries. But it also led to my undoing. When The Deseret News bought The Telegram and scrapped the latter, some 35 were separated from their jobs. This was in October 1952. Failing to get a steady job I took off for California in March 1953. While there I stayed with Cal and his wife Christel, whom he married while on leave from the Coast Guard.…

I thoroughly enjoyed myself, as I was able to get two or three good jobs on the San Francisco Examiner and was given permanent work on the Oakland Tribune when we received word that Mom had fallen down some steps while helping Helen and had pretty well broken herself up. I quit my job and went home.

Nicholas G. Morgan, Harold's half-brother.

The rest of that year I did publicity for the Utah State Fair and other odd jobs. We were having a tough time. In the winter of 54 I went to work for my brother, Nicholas G. Morgan. [For various reasons, the sequence of the events above may not be accurate.]

For the next two years or more I sold printing, worked in the print shop, helped Harry Miller put out a weekly newspaper and was associated with Horace Shurtliff in publication of a business daily. We were doing very well with the latter when certain officers of the Utah State Press Association decided we were doing too good and threatened to take us to court unless we desisted from soliciting advertising. Shurtliff decided not to fight so I was left without a job. I then secured a job with Salt Lake City. It was while working for the city that I received a phone call from an old friend, Lincoln Thomson in Pasadena, Calif. offering me a job on the Pasadena Independent. In the next day or two I was on my way to California.

To be continued...

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Morgan 2: Harold Morgan, Part VII

In the summer of that year I was invited to join the staff of the Salt Lake City Herald. Jessie and the babies went back to St. Johns and I went to Salt Lake City, the place I had been aiming for during the previous two years. On arrival I found the Herald had merged with the Salt Lake Telegram and the Herald was scrubbed. The town was full of reporters, copy readers and sales people out of work. The publisher offered me a job in Anaconda, Mont., but I wanted to stay in Salt Lake, so sought a job on the Deseret News. The Col. John Q. Cannon, editor of the paper listened sympathetically to my tale of woe and on the first opening at the start of the vacation season, gave me a job. I was overjoyed.

My first assignment was the City and County building, which housed most of the city and county offices as well as the adjacent county jail.

After about two weeks of feeling my way around I sent for Jessie and the babies. I rented a house on south Main Street. I knew the day they would arrive but not the hour. As I rode the street car to the Union Pacific station, I spotted them coming south from the place I lodged on West Temple Street. Grabbing the stop cord I nearly created a riot getting to the front to stop the motorman. I raced to my little family and we were soon having lunch at a nearby café. How happy I was to see them.

Alta, Helen, and Cal.

We stayed in the Main Street house for about a year and then moved to the 300 block on Quince Street. Here our wonderful son, Paul was born… After a few hectic months on Quince St. we moved into the 1100 block on Windsor St. It lay between 8th and 9th east and south of 9th South. We were near Liberty Park and often went there during the summer. We attended church in the 31st Ward.

Helen, Maxine, and Alta.

Helen was now of school age but we kept her home until Alta could attend kindergarten. Fearing the school was too far away for our darlings we moved to a house on West Sixth South, almost in the back yard of the Grant School. Joe Christensen, Jessie’s brother came to stay with us and complete his high school. The house was not too comfortable and Paul contracted bronchial asthma. The following year on the doctor’s advice we moved to the 500 block on 11th East. It was a 5 room duplex so we were very comfortable. The following year we were overjoyed when our little Calvin was born the following September. What a sweet little fellow he was.

Alta, Maxine, Helen, Joan, Paul, and Calvin.

During the spring of 1924 we purchased a home at 1536 East 13th South St. Joe was still with us but by this time was attending the University of Utah. It was a nice neighborhood, close to schools and church. We were in the Wasatch Ward. Here we spent 14 or 15 happy years, in spite of low wages and many calls on our meager funds. This was the birthplace of three of our other children. What wonderful little souls they were and are. Maxine, personality plus girl, was born…


Sweet, lovable Joan was born three years… What a darling, she was. So healthy looking and so active. Then like a bolt of lightning out of the blue, she was stricken. The doctor pronounced it leukemia and we rushed her to the hospital shortly before her fourth birthday. A few days later after the doctors had done everything possible for her she succumbed to this dread disease. What a tragedy for our little family.

The month Joan died. From Harold or Jessie Morgan's papers.

Jessie was almost inconsolable. For almost a year she made daily trips to the little grave in the City cemetery. It was most heart rendering. Then almost five years later … our darling Anne was born. As if in answer to prayer she was almost the express image of our little Joan. What a wonderful experience.

Anne, Maxine, Helen, and Alta.

Two or three months after Anne was born and our darling Francis Alta was married to Russel Shurtliff, son of our neighbors, we left our little home and moved to a large house in the 1100 block on Third Avenue. This was really a sad day.

To be continued...

Photo of Salt Lake City and County Building from wikipedia.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Morgan 2: Harold Morgan, Part VI

After struggling for two years and learning that championing the cause of the ‘Peepul’ is not always in the best self interest we decided to sell the paper. We received a few hundred dollars but that went mostly for debts. It was not long after this we moved to an apartment in a building formerly used to house students attending the stake academy. We had a fine garden on the lot but the principal of the Academy claimed it although we had planted it. We got a few buckets of peas and beans. During the summer I worked on construction of a bridge over the Rio Puerco river near Navajo.

Maxine, Jessie, Helen, and Alta (L to R).

On July 12 of this year our lovely daughter Alta was born. Again Jessie was at the home of Mother Christensen. [Francis Ann Thomas Christensen.]

During the summer I passed the county school teachers’ examination and received a teaching certificate. In the fall I took a school at Cedro about twenty miles northeast of St. Johns. All the pupils were Mexican and I boarded with a fine Mexican family.

The next year I lived with a Garcia family, also fine folk. The food was good but hot. The Mexican women would take the dry red chili pods, sprinkle with water and put them in the oven. When the pods were soft they were put through a food chopper and then made into a gravy like dish. This they would scoop up with a tortilla. The first year I was at Cedro I rode a horse to St. Johns on week ends. The next year I bought a fine bicycle and would ride the 20 miles in about an hour and one-half. Long stretches of sand made the going rough. It was during this year that I bought a lot in St. Johns and during the summer made enough adobes to start building. We completed the house before I began teaching the fifth and sixth grades in the St. Johns district 11. The pay was low and the hours long.

Our house was only two rooms but to us it was a palace. We had a Jersey cow so the children had plenty of milk. We were happy and the babies were healthy.

Jessie on left in center row. Linton Morgan in center back.

After school was out I passed a federal examination in Flagstaff, Ariz. The tests included shorthand and typewriting and I thought of getting a clerk appointment in Washington, where my brother Lin was studying law and going to school. My mother was also living there. On my return I stopped in Holbrook and was offered a job on the Holbrook Tribune. It was published by the Bryan brothers, who were expert printers and writers. In a few weeks I brought Jessie and the babies to Holbrook. Looking for greater opportunities in the newspaper field I took a job late in the fall with the Gallup, N.M. Independent.

Before the first of the year I had a job with the Albuquerque Morning Journal, my first daily newspaper experience. This was the year of a bad flu epidemic. [Probably 1918] We all had attacks except Jessie. What a wonderful job she did nursing the babies through that awful period. People were dying like flies. After the children recovered we moved to a house on the bench at the end of the street car line.

We were surrounded on every side with tubercular patients. But the air was dry and cleansed by the sand which blew almost constantly. As I worked on a morning paper, it was often 1 am and more before I could start home. Street cars had quit running so I would walk over a railroad viaduct. We had many good times in Albuquerque and we did pretty well financially. We had been there about a year when the paper was purchased by Carl Magee, an Oklahoman. He had soon stirred up a real battle with the Republican bosses who had long ruled New Mexico. It was a very exciting time. Magee was a real crusader. At one time he was charged with murder in the accidental death of a highway patrolman in Las Vegas, N.M. They fixed his bail at $250,000 in cash. This was furnished by Bronson Cutting, Santa Fe publisher and afterwards United States senator.

To be continued...

Photo of Jersey cow from
Photo of chiles from

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Morgan 2: Harold Morgan, Part V

On March 28 of the following year Jessie and I were married at her home, the ceremony being performed by President David K. Udall. The same afternoon we left on our honeymoon to Salt Lake City. We spent our first night in Hunt at the insistence of my mother. This incident we both have many times regretted. At Holbrook we took the train. What a wonderful trip.

In Denver we boarded a ‘rubber-neck’ bus for a tour of the city. Enroute we had our picture taken. We bought a print, but much to our regret in later years it became lost or misplaced. When we left St. Johns we thought we were dressed in the best of fashion. The picture certainly deluded us of any thoughts along this line. My hat came up to a peak and Jessie’s hat, the best in Whiting’s store [in St. Johns] was hardly the latest Paris fashion. The whole affair has given us many a good laugh.

When we boarded the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad that evening, the porter recreased my hat and shined my shoes. While traveling over Tennessee Pass of the Continental Divide, our Pullman and two coaches ran off the track but did not overturn. It gave us quite a fright but in two or three hours we were again on our way.

On arrival in Provo we went to the home of Jessie’s sister and brother-in-law, Andy and Addie Gibbons. They had three lovely children. [Eventually five, including Francis Gibbons, author and former member of the Council of the Seventy.] We were there a few days and then went on to Salt Lake City. We took rooms in the old Morgan hotel, which had greatly deteriorated since my father built it.

The Salt Lake Temple in 1912.

Our marriage was solemnized in the Salt Lake Temple April 8. Officiating was Alvin Smith, a son of Church President Joseph F. Smith. It was an all day session. The following day we returned to Provo, spent two days there. Then short of funds but long on love we started our return to Arizona. Andy Gibbons tried to persuade us to stay in Provo and go to the Brigham Young University, but for some reason which we still haven’t figured out, we rejected the offer.

Never will I forget the long two day and night ride. We had nothing to eat the last day but peanut butter sandwiches. It was a long time after this before I could stomach peanut butter. On arrival in Holbrook I cashed a check. However, we had a lousy breakfast and we were glad to get out of there. On arrival in St. Johns we rented what had been the family home of the Udalls for many years. I went back to work on The Observer. While there may have been many disappointments and frustrations, I recall few of them. All I remember is that we had much fun raising a small garden, consisting largely of summer squash. For this I still have a hankering.

Marinus and Francis Christensen

The next year on May 2 our beautiful baby Helen was born in the home of Father Christensen. [“Father Christensen” was Jessie’s father Marinus Christensen, the town blacksmith.] Harking to the advice of some of the Udalls we secured the services of Dr. Garland Pace, their osteopath son-in-law. It turned out he knew little about obstetrics. Jessie after being in labor about 16 hours was delivered with instruments by Dr. T.J. Bouldin. Except for a few head abrasions, the baby was fine but Jessie hovered between life and death for more than two weeks. After about two months she was finally well enough to return home. During Jessie’s confinement John H. Udall’s wife Ruth, died during an operation in Los Angeles. [John Hunt Udall was a son of David King Udall. He married Ruth Woolley Kimball on 5 June 1912. She was President Spencer W. Kimball’s sister.] Shortly after we accepted his invitation to live in his newly built home on the hill overlooking the town.

That same year I purchased The Observer from Montross. Jessie often came to the office with the baby. On publication day she would feed the papers into the press while I set type by hand for the next issue.

One day while attempting to show her something about the operation, my left hand in which I held some type was caught in the press. The type saved my hand from being crushed, but it was badly lacerated. The impact crushed the knuckle.

To be continued...

Photo of the Pullman Coach from wikipedia.
Photo of the Salt Lake Temple from: Frederick Converse Beach and George Edwin Rines. The Americana; A Universal Reference Library, Comprising the Arts and Sciences, Literature, History, Biography, Geography, Commerce, Etc., of the World. New York: Scientific American compiling department, 1912.
Photo of zucchini from

Monday, January 26, 2009

Morgan 2: Harold Morgan, Part IV

When we started high school in St. Johns Jesse Udall and I would go to school one year and stay out the next to look after the ranch chores and freight alfalfa to St. Johns and Holbrook.

It was in my first year at the St. Johns Stake Academy that I met The One and Only. She was of medium size, fair of face and figure, brunette with a quick wit. [Jessie Christensen Morgan was born June 13, 1893 in St. Johns, Apache County, Arizona]

Possessed of a pleasing and vivacious personality, she was a favorite with the girls as well as the boys. At that time she had a ‘steady’ Alfred Anderson. Because he was a good friend, I usually wound up with one of [word missing] girl friends when we went out together. Robert H. Sainsbury was the Academy principal. In my second year I was elected president of the studentbody and my favorite girl friend was elected vice president. We were also cast as principals in several school plays. I still remember one particular rehearsal. I was supposed to grasp her outstretched hands as she came towards me. My shyness nettled the coach, Su Tenney. She jumped to the stage, she rushed toward me, grasped my hands leaving me speechless. A good laugh broke the tension. During the latter part of the school year Jessie and I were frequently together. School ended May 11 and a few days later Jessie left for Salt Lake City taking my heart with her. Despite the fact I thought of her almost constantly she wrote infrequently and I learned that an old flame, Earl Patterson was escorting her around. He was a BYU student.

At the end of the summer I was relieved to learn indirectly that Jessie was moving with her sister and brother-in-law to Salt Lake City, where she would attend the Latter Day Saints High School. This was in the fall of 1912. Possessed of a strong faith and a will to achieve the things I most wanted I put my trust in a program of thought control. I remember little of that long and lonesome year. However, it was a memorable day in the summer of 1913 when she arrived in Hunt on the Stanley Steamer used to transport passengers and mail. After a brief visit Jessie still as petite and charming as ever, went on to St. Johns. After a week end trip or two to St. Johns my stock began going up as well as my spirits. In the fall we were both back at the Academy. It was a most pleasant year.

The following summer I helped my brother, Lynn [Linton Morgan] put in a crop of grain at Hunt. The summer was hot and dry. Because of the lack of water the grain did not do too well. [This is the period when Harold wrote the letters.]

During the summer our crowd together with a few others went to the White Mountains on vacation. In the group was Jessie’s old flame, Earl Patterson. During our stay with the aid of his sister and his man ‘Friday’ Grover Brown, Earl made a couple of passes at Jessie. She was most loyal and sweet and after a most enjoyable time we returned to St. Johns and became engaged.

Late that summer I went to work for C.F. Montross, publisher of the St. Johns Observer, thus fulfilling the first steps of a long cherished ambition to become a newspaperman.

To be continued...

Photo of Escudilla in the White Mountains from

Friday, January 23, 2009

Morgan 2: Harold Morgan, Part III

The half a dozen houses [in Hunt, Arizona] were situated in a valley about 10 miles long and five miles wide. Through the valley coursed the Little Colorado and Zuni rivers.

Udall had more than 1,000 acres under fence and cultivated about 250 acres. The balance was used for grazing. Irrigation water was obtained from a reservoir about seven miles east on the Colorado. When the river flooded as it did often in the spring it would wipe out the dam and it would take most of the next summer to rebuild it.

It was a stupendous job to build and maintain miles and miles of canal and diversion dams. The farm produced all kinds of grains and alfalfa. Also sugar cane and a truck garden. It was a daylight to dark job of harvesting the crops in the summer. In addition we milked 25 to 30 cows night and morning in addition to our many other chores.

During the winter we attended a one room school. Part of the year we attended classes in one of the Udall houses and the other part in the home of Rancher Harris Greer, a mile and one half distant. We walked this distance night and morning for three or four years and had great fun doing so. We also had lively times at night after the chores were done. We would gather with the neighbor children and play outdoor games. When the weather was unfavorable we would stay in door while Aunt Ida Udall read to us faith promoting stories and from novels of that time. We had family prayer night and morning. The boys slept in a small upstairs room. The beds on the floor were so close together it was almost impossible to walk between them. At the spot where we turned to climb the stairs over the roof of a lean to the sleeping quarters, stood a large greasewood bush, one of the hardest shrubs on the Arizona desert. Here the line would halt as the eight or 10 boys answered the call of nature. Although of greenish hue for many years the bush gradually took on a saffron look.

For may years Udall had a contract for carrying the United States mail from Holbrook, the nearest railroad station to Springerville, about 35 miles south of St. Johns.

When the boys at the ranch reached 15 years of age they took turns driving the span of horses hitched to one-seated buckboard on which were piled sacks of mail. Two of the boys were employed driving between Hunt and Holbrook and two others between Hunt and Springerville. I had both routes at different times for months on end. It was a lonely all day ride on either route. Often time in addition to the mail, we carried a passenger, mostly traveling salesmen. For a year or more I was camp attendant at a way station near the Petrified Forest. Here the drivers would change horses. During the day while herding the horses, I would ride over the multicolored clay hills and washes. It was lonely but a lot of fun.

While in my early teens I drove a four horse team carrying farm produce from the ranch to Holbrook or St. Johns. On return from the railroad station we would load with flour, sugar and other staples for the St. Johns stores. Jesse Udall, now an Arizona Supreme Court Justice, made numerous trips to the White Mountains to bring out poles for the telephone line under construction from Holbrook to Springerville and building materials for the Udall mansion then building in St. Johns. We had many good times together.

Among the many sports we staged at Hunt were the rodeos, which we usually staged on Sunday after Sunday school. We would round up some wild steers and calves in a cedar post corral. The animals would be placed in a smaller corral and turned loose in the larger arena after they had been mounted by one of the would be cowboys. Other times we would corral a bunch of wild horses. These rodeos were equal to any I have seen.

After the rodeo we would climb aboard our ponies and race four or five miles to a crystal clear body of water called Indian Lake for a swim. Every kid had to learn to swim. Two of the larger boys would seize a non-swimmer, carry him to a ledge overhanging the lake and throw him in. The water was about 12 feet deep. The half scared boy would thresh the water with his arms and legs to keep himself afloat and soon would be swimming as good as the next one. Those were happy and exciting days.

To be continued...

The picture of fields with alfalfa is from
The picture with the horses facing each other is "Meeting of the Mail Carriers" from Arizona Pioneer Mormon.
The horse and wagon picture is of Isaac Thomas (probably a cousin or uncle of Jessie Christensen's) driving the mail.
The picture of the wild horses is from

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Morgan 2: Harold Morgan, Part II

Other Nephi highlights:

For several years my Uncle John Linton operated a large ranch near the little railroad town of Juab, about 15 miles south of Nephi. My brother, Lynn [Richard Linton Morgan, about two years older than Harold] and myself were often invited out there to spend three or four days. Here I learned to ride and drive horses. It was great fun.

My uncle and his wife, Eliza, had a large family, seven girls and one boy. They were fine people. We also used to go out there to skate in the winter. Hundreds of acres of meadowland would be covered with ice one to three inches thick. I also used to visit at the homes of my aunts, Julia Crawley and Alice Ovard in Eureka, which was about 35 miles west and south of Nephi. Their husbands worked in the lead, silver mines. On one occasion I was allowed to accompany my uncle, Joseph Ovard to the 700 foot level.

For a number of years following the death of my father of typhoid fever in Preston, Ida. Aug. 14, 1894 and her return to the home of her parents in Nephi my mother clerked in a department store. She was quick at figures and was well liked and respected by all who knew her. She had great faith in prayer and fasting.

During her marriage, my father was away from home a great deal attending to business and church duties. Being a polygamous wife, my mother was forced to move frequently to avoid arrest by federal agents, who were seeking evidence against my father. I remember my mother telling that on one occasion she carried me in a water bucket from the home of one friend to another. My courageous father must have led a charmed life during these years as he was never arrested though he went about freely attending to business and church affairs.

In the 1890’s he built one of the finest hotels in Salt Lake City. He also established the first business college in that city. Many of the later leaders of church and state attended his school. A bronze bust has been erected on Salt Lake City’s Main Street, at the front of the college site. He was an excellent penman and authored a number of missionary tracts for the church. A number of these are still in use. [The best-known was “The Plan of Salvation”, still in use into the 1960s.]

One of the saddest Nephi periods was when my mother decided to take her three boys and move to Arizona. She felt that here they would have greater opportunity and also have the guidance of an old friend, David K. Udall, then president of the St. Johns Stake, who had lived in Arizona for many years. He had two wives and 11 children. His second wife, Ida Hunt Udall, was a close friend of my mother. [Mary Ann Linton Morgan married David K. Udall April 9, 1903, in Preston, Idaho. They were married for time only by Matthias F. Cowley.]

We were accompanied to Arizona by our old Nephi friends, David and Rebecca Udall. I shall never forget that train ride from Nephi to Holbrook, Ariz. My mother was in deep sorrow, torn between what she thought was her duty to her boys and her duty to her aging parents. The closest relationship existed between she and her mother. In fact the Linton family felt close to their mother. This was in contrast to the feeling they had for their father. I remember him as a strict disciplinarian who had little tolerance for childish play and pranks. During much of the time we lived with my grandparents, he was afflicted with rheumatism and in the winter would sit in the corner by the stove reading the Bible. He was an excellent gardener and a man of strong will and purpose. He lived to be 87 years old.

On arrival at Holbrook were met by President Udall and his wife, Ida. The following day we journeyed in a white top carriage to the little town of Hunt, 20 miles southwest of St. Johns, the county seat of Apache County. [Harold was turned around like many others in St. Johns. Hunt is to the northwest.] This was to be our home for the next 12 years.

View Larger Map

To be continued...

The photo of the John and Eliza Ann Linton family is from
The photo of the Utah mine is from
The photo of Mary Ann Linton Morgan is from a pedigree chart. The photo was carefully trimmed. I don't know of any other photos of Mary besides this one, the one with her three boys which was in the last post, and one other which I will eventually post in her bio.
The next photo is John Morgan.
The photo of trains in Holbrook is from
The photo of David K. and Ida Hunt Udall is from Arizona Pioneer Mormon. (Link to entire book on sidebar Family History Links as "David K Udall.")

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Morgan 2: Harold Morgan, Part I

Harold Morgan
b. 2 June 1892 Nephi, Juab, Utah
m. 28 March 1914 St. Johns, Apache, Arizona
d. 1 November 1963 Pasadena, Los Angeles, California
b. 5 November 1963 Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, Utah
Wife: Jessie Christensen
Father: John Hamilton Morgan; Mother: Mary Ann Linton

My earliest recollections are of the small central Utah town of Nephi, the place where I was born June 2nd, 1892.

My mother was Mary Ann Linton, also a native of Nephi. My father was John Hamilton Morgan, who at that time was high in the councils of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. For more than 15 years he was a member of the first Council of Seventy. He was a gifted speaker and a great missionary. For a number of years he presided over the Southern States Mission, when that Mission included most of the southern states.

He endured many hardships and had a number of narrow escapes from death at the hands of religious bigots. Prior to coming to Utah in 1866 he served as a volunteer in the Union army during the Civil War. He was wounded during a battle in Tennessee and carried the bullet to his grave. As his company advanced up a hill, held by he enemy, the color bearer was killed. My father seized the colors and led the advance, which ended in victory. For this act of bravery, my father was awarded the bullet torn company flag, which is now encased in Salt Lake City.

He was born in Greensburg, Indiana, a son of Garrard and Eliza Ann Hamilton who came to Indiana from Kentucky, where they were neighbors of the Thomas Lincoln family.

My mother was the eldest daughter of Samuel and Ellen Sutton Linton. My grandmother was an emigrant from her native England. She was converted to the LDS church with her family the Peter Suttons. She spent six weeks crossing the Atlantic Ocean in a sailing vessel. Arriving at the Missouri river town of Winter Quarters, now Council Bluffs in the middle 1850’s, the family joined a handcart company captained by a man named Martin. [They were in the Joseph Young Company in 1853 and had a rather uneventful crossing. Records show that Samuel Linton probably assisted with the rescue of the Martin Handcart Company]…

I remember my grandmother as a refined, gentle, generous woman, who served for a number of years as secretary of the Nephi ward Relief Society.

My grandfather was a native of County Cork, Ireland. Moving when quite young with his family to New Brunswick, Nova Scotia. [Samuel Linton was born on June 27, 1828 in Murbin, Tyrone, Ireland]. Later the family moved to Philadelphia, where my grandfather heard the Mormon missionaries and joined the church, the only member of family to do so. Crossing the plains to Utah in 1856 he became a teamster for Brigham Young. He was also an excellent axman and could cradle more grain than any man in the community. My Grandparents were married in Salt Lake City and at the request of Brigham Young moved to Nephi in 1857. The town had been the target for a number of Indian raids.

To better protect themselves the settlers built an adobe wall around the town. The wall was six feet thick at the bottom and two thick at the top. Heavy wooden gates permitted entry and exit. The Nephi colonists like other in Utah, heeded the advice of President Young that it was better to feed the Indian than to fight them. As Indian depredations became fewer, the colonists eased their vigilance and the wall deteriorated. I recall my mother telling of the children of her day burrowing into the wall to make a playhouse. Nephi was first settled in 1850. One of my most vivid recollections is the jubilee celebration of the founding in 1900. It was a colorful event. Covered wagons, ox teams, handcarts and flag bedecked carriages made up the procession which was several blocks long. I remember an old pioneer, Thomas Bowles, with his long blacksnake whip driving six yoke of oxen. The whip would sometimes cut through the thick hide of the animals.

The town of Nephi nestles at the foot of Mt. Nebo, one of the highest peaks, 12,400 feet, of the Wasatch range. The perpetual snows of this and other mountains fed the streams that flowed through the valleys and provided irrigation and culinary water for Nephi and other communities. One of the crystal clear streams known as Little Salt Creek flows through the center of Nephi. In this stream I was baptized on my eighth birthday, June 2, 1900. My first school teacher was a Miss Hamilton, other Nephi teachers included Miss Sorenson, Florence Christensen and Thomas W. Vickers. It was while attending the fourth grade under Miss Christensen that a most tragic event occurred. We were having an evening Christmas party. Kids outside were interfering so the teacher locked the two doors. As the young Santa Claus, Ivan Kendall reached for presents on the candle covered tree, cotton on his coat caught fire, soon turning him into a human torch. Children screamed and fled in all directions. The teacher finally caught the boy and smothered the flames with her coat, but not before he had been burned over much of his body. After three or four days he succumbed to his injuries.

One of my fondest recollections is going with my mother to visit David and Rebecca Udall, near and dear friends. Here the old gentleman whom we called Grandpa Udall, would regale us with fairy tales as well as Bible stories. From the time I was about seven years old until we left Nephi in 1903, Lin, my eldest brother and I worked for Udall during the summer months and on Saturdays during the school year, hoeing weeds and thinning sugar beets on his farm. He paid us 25 cents a day. It was hot, hard work. Sometimes he would pay us in script, which my mother could use at the store.

To be continued...

Photo of Nephi, Utah, from
Photo of Civil War reenactment from
Photo of Mary Ann Morgan with Harold, Richard Linton, and Mathias Cowley Morgan.
Photo of Ellen Sutton and Samuel Linton from
Photo of Presidio Adobe Wall (Tucson) from
Photo of Mt Nebo from
Photo of sugar beets from
Photo of David Udall (NOT David King Udall) from