Monday, December 23, 2013

Ruby Snow Warren Jensen (1884-1966) Autobiography, Part 2

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Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

We were a bunch of fun-loving girls, about ten of us in the crowd, and we could always stir up a surprise party for someone. Even if there was no birthday of any one of us, we could still make a party. Most of us worked in the beet field thinning beets. I remember one day we were working in Father's field of beets, Myrtle Robinson, Roxy Fullmer, and several of the other girls and myself planned a surprise party for Roxy at my house as it was her birthday. Mother always made us welcome. On my 18th birthday Mother had a party for me, asking all the girls and boys of the crowd we went around with. Father and Mother gave me a plain gold band ring for a birthday gift and Eddie gave me a pair of brown kid gloves. They were under my plate that morning at the breakfast table. The gloves were soon worn out, but I am still wearing the ring. It is worn very thin, but I have worn it now over sixty years.

We did not worry much about refreshments at our parties. If we were hungry we ate bread and butter. We usually had some corn to pop and had lemonade. We were all going out on dates, but mostly as a large group. Jennie Bird and I started going together and going out quite steady with Russell Holley and Will Jensen. I went with Will for over a year. He died from a rupture appendix in January, 1903. We were a sorrowful crowd of young people, as he was always the life of the party. On February 6, 1903, Jesse Warren's father died. He was the caller at all the dances so this brought sorrow into our young group again as Jesse was one of the crowd. I think a bond of sympathy for loved ones we had lost brought Jesse and me together and we began dating and going steady that summer.

Jesse was taking care of his mother's farm and when the work was finished that fall, he went to Schofield to work for the winter. There was a strike on and he got a job as a guard at the mines. This paid good money and when he came home in the spring, he had over four hundred dollars. He bought me an engagement ring. It was opals and pearls and was real pretty. We decided to get married. He also bought a new one horse buggy so we had a way of going places. Madge Whiting helped me make my wedding dress. It was soft white mull, had five widths in the skirt and shirred in at the waistline. It was floor length with a wide hem at the bottom and five tucks above the hem. There was nearly enough material in this skirt to make a quilt top. Mable, my oldest daughter, now has the quilt and she also has the waist and uses it sometimes when she dresses up for plays. I also made my underwear and slip

I had my first pair of slippers for my wedding. They were treasures, a soft black leather. Black cotton stockings with a white design at the ankles completed my wedding outfit.

All our shoes were black high buttoned or laced and our stockings were most all home knit of black yarn, so my slippers and stockings were really something. We did not have very much in our hope chest, but every girl thought she must have a crazy quilt before she got married and I had mine all finished.

The rest of this history was written in January, February and March of 1960 while I was laid up with a broken arm. most of it was printed with my left hand as my right arm was in a cast.

Jesse and I were married May 25, 1904, married at home by Uncle Will Tew who was the Bishop of Mapleton Ward. The house was full of our relatives and Mother and Jesse's Mother had made a nice supper for over 100 people. That same evening we had a reception in the form of program and dancing in Wallace Johnson's new dance hall. It is now Vance Gividen's "Square Deal Garage."

We stayed at home with the folks for more than a month as Mother had broken a needle off in her hand and so was unable to do he work, but by the last of June we had moved into the Honeymoon cottage, so called because so many of the Mapleton young folks rented this place and lived there a few months while getting settled into some place of their own. It was a two room long house--one of the first homes built in mapleton. It was built by Uncle Henry and Aunt Hrriett whiting Curtis and was built where Welby's barn now stands. We only lived here about a month when we bought the place from Sarah matson and moved into the other home on the same lot. That was down on the street by the Dance Hall.

We had a nice new bedroom set set that Father and Mother gave us for a wedding present. We bought a small used stove and table and a new cupboard and four chairs. About this time there had been a fire in the vestry of the church. This was carpeted with a large home made carpet, it had some burned spots in it, but we bought it and there was enough good carpet left to cover the big kitchen and living room, which was one, in this new home of ours. Part of this home had been Mapleton's first church, but when the brick church was built, Father and Aunt Harriett had bought the building for a store and it was later Mapleton's first post office also. When we bought the place it still had the cupboard in it where the song books and minute books were kept when it was the church.

We were fixed nice and comfortable in this place and on December 30 our first baby was born while a big dance was going on in the hall. This was the New Years Eve Party. That year New Year's day came on Sunday, and they never danced the old year out and the new year in on Saturday night. We named this little girl Mabel. When she was only six weeks old she got the whooping cough and was very bad with it; so bad, we did not know if she would live for many days. John and Cynthia Dall were living in the big room of our house which had been the store at this time and they were very good to help me.

Jesse was taking care of his mother's farm and to make a little extra money he bought fruit, garden vegetables, eggs, butter, and chicken and peddled them to Schofield, making a trip once a week. This took three days to make the trip so he was away from home about half of the time.

In the spring of 1906, Jesse got a job on the Strawberry Reservation Project, working on the tunnel in Strawberry Valley, so now he only got home about once in two weeks to get some things to take back to eat, as the men were all doing their own cooking while away from home. Leo Harmer and Afton Waters from Mapleton were working there too. On the 12th of August, our first baby boy was born. I was staying at Mother's then as Jesse was away so much. We named this baby Burton Jesse. He had blue eyes and red hair, very curly. When he was 6 months old he took the prize at a play for being the prettiest baby there. The prize was a baby ring with pearl sets in it.

Time passed on. We lived here, visited with our folks, went to church and did the things socially that our gang had always done, some shows and dancing, when we could. When Burton was just learning to walk, we had a pet lamb that we had raised on a bottle and every time Burton would go out doors, the lamb would bunt him over. Just as fast as he would get up, the lamb would knock him down again. This was great fun for the lamb, but hard on Burton, so I would tie the lamb up, but even then Burton wanted to play with it so would go close enough so the lamb could push him down again.

Burton still had long curls and on the 4th of July, 1907, I had got his hair curled with a braid on the top of his head and a white ribbon bow and long ringlets. He looked real cute. I had Mabel and him all ready to go to the program and Mabel's hair was curled in ringlets too. I sat Burton down on the floor with Mabel to watch him while I got ready. When I came back in the room, there Burton sat with a long ringlet on the floor on each side of him. Mabel had cut them off while baby sitting. Now Jesse had to finish barbaring him before we went to the program. He really looked a sight too.

The winter of 1907 we went to Castle Gate and Jesse got work in the mine. Then we came home in the spring of 1908 to tend his Mother's place again. This summer he hauled all the material for the John Murray home and helped some on the building. George Murray lives there now.

Welby S., our second boy, was born on 12 August, 1908, on Burton's 2nd birthday. The young man that Ella was going with said that would be a big birthday some day. We have had some big family outings on that day in the canyons and in 1952 the ward had their ward reunion on that day with the tables set out on the lawn. Elmo and his family were here from Arizona. The family was all seated at one table and we sang Happy Birthday to Burton and Welby. Well, it was a big birthday and all the ward was there and joined in singing.

The winter of 1908 we again went to the coal mines at Schofield and stayed for about three months. Chris and Ovilla Jensen and their two children were with us that winter so we had a nice time as we had someone to visit with. We came home in February. March of 1909 Jesse went to Idaho and bought a farm, 40 acres, seven miles north of Blackfoot. We had a house 12 by 24 feet built like a chicken coop. It just had the outside walls of sheeting. We sold our home in Mapleton to a Mr. Woodward and stored our furniture in the old log house which was on the place and went to Clear Creek to work in the timber, getting out mining props. We had a very nice summer camping out, living in a tent. Mother's sister, Aunt Ell Fullmer and Uncle Lon and the family were up there too so I had someone to visit with. We had a little red wagon and I would put Burton and Welby in the wagon. Mabel pulled the wagon down the hills and I pulled it up and we would go a mile to where Aunt Ell was camped. Father and Mother came up for a while and Father worked in the timber and Mother and I just visited. Father stayed two months, but Mother only stayed two weeks. We all went to Schofield for the 4th of July celebration. We had a very nice summer and came home the first part of September and packed and loaded our furniture, the horses and what implements we had, wagon, buggy, plow, harrow, etc., in a railroad car, to ship to Idaho, and Jesse and George Whiting, who loaded his things in the same car, left for our new home in Idaho. When we were in the timber that summer a sheep herder gave us a pup. It was so black that we named it Sinner. Jesse took the pup in the car too. About the first of October, Hazel Whiting and I, with the children, Mabel, Burton and Welby, and Hazel's boy Ron, went by train to Blackfoot. Father took us down to the lower depot in Spanish Fork to get on the train. He had to take a wagon as we had so much baggage. We arrived at Blackfoot at Midnight and crossed the Snake River in the dark.

Jesse had our furniture all fixed and beds ready for us in a one room house about one-fourth of a mile from our own place as our house had to have adobes put in and plastering done before we could live in it. When I got up and looked out the next morning, I think I was the most homesick person in the world. That was the most desolate looking country I had ever seen. There were no nice brick homes anywhere around us, just weather beaten shacks that looked more like barns and sheds than homes, but we were there so had to make the best of everything.

We got moved into our own place by Christmas 1909. This was a very hard cold winter, cold wind blowing all the time, seemed like all I got done was keep the stove full of cedar wood (we did not see any coal while we lived in Idaho) to keep us warm. Jesse had to go to the Lava Beds (Lavies) so many days to get enough wood to keep us warm. We had to haul all the water we used for the house and chickens over two miles--hauled it in 40 gallon barrels and watered the horses at the canal. The farm was all in sage brush, but by spring we had 20 acres ready to plant. Of course by now we were acquainted with out neighbors. Seym and Phyllis Hess were the nearest ones, but the dearest ones were Dave and Lizzie Peterson, who we learned to love like family. They lived one-half mile from us. I would put Baby Evalyn and Welby in the baby buggy and with Burton and Mabel walking, I would go to our dear friends and spend many happy hours. We always had mending to do or some kind of sewing, so we visited while we worked. We did a lot of visiting with the Petersons. They did not have any boys and they liked our boys. Dave used to call Welby "Bishop" all the time. One day when he called him bishop, Welby looked down at Dave's shoes and then up at Dave and said, "I's not Bishop now, but when I is Bishop, I will buy you a new pair of shoes." We all had a laugh at this, as Dave had bad corns and a bunyan [sic] and had just got a new pair of shoes and had cut holes in them to ease his feet, but Welby thought they were really worn out. Welby was made a Bishop of the Mapleton Ward February 11, 1951, but by this time Dave Peterson had died, so he never got to buy the shoes.

April, 1910, Ella came up to stay with us a while and on April 26 my baby was born on Mother's birthday. We named her Evalyn after Mother. Ella stayed with us a month and we had a very nice visit.

We had planted out a few fruit trees, shade trees and raspberry bushes and the day Evalyn was born, Jesse was planting the lawn and finished it before he hitched the small black horses on the buggy and went to get our neighbor, Seym Hess, to drive 7 miles to Blackfoot for a midwife to take care of me. We also had a nice spring garden coming up and had painted the house on the outside a light grey and the place now began to look like home and we were not so homesick. Well, we hardly had any time to be homesick, as we worked from daylight till dark. Jesse was determined to get more of the land ready for planting and I had about all I could do to see about the little chickens and my family. We had started to go out to church in the Groveland Ward and met more friends that way. We had bought a new buggy, two seats and a nice top, so it was nice riding around the country when we found any time.

In the spring of 1910, Jesse rented a 40 acre farm from a Mr. Pope. This was under cultivation and had some alfalfa on it. There was a team of small black horses with the place and when we hitched these black horses on our new shiny top buggy, we were really as happy and proud as we have ever been about any of the cars we have owned. Clearing sage brush from the land, making new ditches on the land, took a lot of time, but we were gradually getting the farm cleared of sagebrush.

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