Monday, July 27, 2015

{History of Mapleton} Marion Perry and Clara Elizabeth Larsen

This is from The History of Mapleton, by Ralph K. Harmer and Wendell B. Johnson, on page 163.

Marion Perry was the eleventh child of Stephen C. and Mary Boggs Perry. He was born in Springville, Utah on January 11, 1883. After his father’s death in 1888, Marion came with the rest of his family to live in Mapleton. A natural heir of farm life, Marion helped his older brothers on the farm, doing what seemed to him, like endless chores. He was educated by his mother in the family school and in the elementary schools in Mapleton. As a young man he attended the Brigham Young Academy. His inclination was farming and agriculture, which he pursued on the site of the Perry homestead.

Marion married Clara Elizabeth Larsen on December 21, 1910. Clara was born to James Peter and Mary Caroline Anderson Larsen at Mapleton, Utah on June 7, 1892. She was the sixth of sixteen children. Her early education was interrupted because she was needed at home to tend the babies and help care for the large family. She was baptized at the Big Hollow when she was eight. She had a long lifetime of religious activity; including 30 years as a Relief Society visiting teacher. As a young lady, before her marriage to Marion, she worked at the Harrison Hotel in Springville. After their marriage, they lived with Marion’s mother in the brick home constructed for her on the Perry homestead. Mary Boggs Perry died in 1914.

Marion, or “Maine” as he was known by his friends, was a skilled horseman and trainer. He broke and trained many horses for local farmers. He also supported his wife and family selling and dealing in hay and grain.

Marion and Clara had seven children: Donna, Earl Marion, Phyllis, Clair Larsen, Thelma, Mary Ruth, and Beth. In 1917, Marion contracted ptomaine poisoning and, within a years time, he was stricken with partial paralysis. This condition, which left him crippled to the extent that he had to walk with canes, lasted nearly forty years. Consequently, he relied on his horse to get him from place to place. After Marion’s paralysis, Clara applied for a job as a Raleigh spice agent, and later entered the chicken business. Finally, she took a position as an L.P.N at the Utah State Hospital in 1941, retiring in 1956.

Despite his handicap, Maine worked hard to make a living. He was seldom idle. His many labors, from hauling wood to cattle raising, were as rigorous as any man in town. He was highly loved and respected by all who knew him. Marion passed away on October 31, 1959. Clara is still residing in Mapleton at the time of this writing (1976).

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