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January 1882


EVENTS IN EMMELINE B. WELLS’S DIARY FOR 1882

25 January

Elizabeth Hoagland Cannon, mother of EBW’s son-in-law John Q. Cannon and wife of George Q. Cannon, died. A few weeks later, on 15 February, Elizabeth Ann Smith Whitney (often called Mother Whitney) died.

15 March

EBW noted that the U.S. House of Representatives had passed the Edmunds Anti-Polygamy Act. The act declared polygamy a felony and unlawful cohabitation a misdemeanor in U.S. territories. “Every one on the street is talking of the Edmund’s bill and the possible & probable results of such strong measures,” EBW wrote on 16 March.

20 March

Under the pen name Amethyst, EBW wrote an article titled “Awakening of Spring” for the youth magazine Contributor.

1 and 12 April

EBW served on committees at the territory’s fifth constitutional convention to attempt to prepare Utah for statehood.

4–26 May

Relief Society leaders planned for a women’s hospital. They formed an executive board and began raising funds for the Deseret Hospital.

July 1882

EBW’s daughter Louie Wells traveled with Septimus and Mary Ann Sears, and Thomas G. and Mary Ellen Richards Webber, to San Francisco, where the men conducted business.

1 January 1882 • Sunday

And so we have entered upon a new year, Belle [Isabel Whitney Sears] is here, and so I must stay at home with my family. We have not invited any one Katie [Catherine Wells] called to day. Lou [Louise M. Wells] went to meeting and took Dot [S. Isabel Sears] with her. After dinner I went to the Ward meeting. The Bishops Counselors were chosen this evening.1 Pres. A. [Angus] M. Cannon came home with me <and administered to baby.>2

2 January 1882 • Monday

Went up and engaged a carriage for us all to go up to the graveyard, husband3 came down and invited me to go to the Gardo4 with them, I got ready and went, and staid there all day long took dinner there in the evening with the President5 Everything was very lovely and all seemed happy [p. 25] {p. 27}

3 January 1882 • Tuesday

I arose feeling very ill in the morning went early to the Office, but could scarcely sit up Pres. [John] Taylor called on me my husband came and spent the afternoon. I felt a little better towards evening. Mr. [Alfred] Andre sent me a letter in French. I wrote a poem for my paper entitled Then & Now.”6 Wrote a letter to Belle

4 January 1882 • Wednesday

<This is George Q [Cannon]’s birthday> Went early to the Office again– spent the forenoon writing, then went to Mr. [Henry] Dinwoodey’s to dinner with about 20 ladies. Organized the children in the afternoon into a Primary Association. This is the first <second> time I have organized in the city.7 It is one of my hobbies to organize had my French in the evening [p. 26] {p. 28}

5 January 1882 • Thursday

Went early again to the Office to work, spent a miserable day. The Esquire8 came down at evening and administered to the baby. We had a nice visit he took supper with us. Mell [Melvina Whitney Woods] has been to see me and Mary Jane [Whitney Groo] today. We cannot say what <would> the result of a mass meeting who is likely to be the <member of Congress>

6 January 1882 • Friday

No news yet from Washington, so the ladies9 will not go down probably. We have asked for credentials, they will be furnished if it is decided they are to go. The paper is behind, which is an annoyance to me. I am very solicitous about a mass meeting but Aunt Eliza [R. Snow] will not consent to our having one yet– [p. 27] {p. 29}

7 January 1882 • Saturday

The paper is out and we are hard at work mailing baby is worse, suffering severe pain all the time. Went home very late baby in agony, Louie not very well, had a letter from John Q. [Cannon]10 good news. A man shot with a pistol, heard the report, saw the man, and the excitement11

8 January 1882 • Sunday

Went to meeting in the morning with Louie, at noon went to see Dr. [Washington F.] Anderson about baby told us to bring him over. Annie [Elizabeth Ann Wells Cannon] & I went and Dr. lanced the swelling on his neck. He did not cry much, and it gave him great relief, Mell came down at evening. New Assembly Hall dedicated today12 [p. 28] {p. 30}

9 January 1882 • Monday

In the middle of washing Mary the servant girl took sick. baby is better but Louie is ill. finished the mailing. Annie has all the work to do for Lou is not able. The cow ran away and that was the finishing stroke. Went up to see Aunt Eliza again she is not at all well

10 January 1882 • Tuesday

A very cold day indeed, Mary is very ill. Louie still ailing. Emily [Harris Wells] came down at evening and went to the theater with Annie to hear the Misses Bunning read. Br. [Soren P.] Neve & Larsen came and administered to Mary. Sent Lucile [Sears]’s clothes home by express Spent a very lonely evening. [p. 29] {p. 31}

11 January 1882 • Wednesday

A miserable stormy day: and I have been annoyed with people coming in and staying who had no particular business. Lou went out sleigh-riding with Rob [Robert W. Sloan]. Br. [William W.] Cluff came in to see me– I took my lesson in French tonight, baby does not seem very well.

12 January 1882 • Thursday

Weather improved and Sister Winters [Myra Clayton Winter] came to help us with the work Baby is better, husband is well and has been in to see me and talk matters over. I am trying to get my paper out. had a letter from Br. [George Q.] Cannon, and from Belva [Bennett] Lockwood [p. 30] {p. 32}

13 January 1882 • Friday

Still very cold weather Br. [Danquart] Weggeland the artist has brought me my oil-painting that he has been preparing. It is something like but not just what I like. I am glad to hear and see what I do in our Young ladies Associations, hope we may be able to do great good.

14 January 1882 • Saturday

This is meeting day but I cannot go, Mary is somewhat better and and Lou is better, and baby is much better. I have many things to make me feel bad and low spirited, but I must rise above it if possible. I am not feeling very well my heart is aching. [p. 31] {p. 33}

15 January 1882 • Sunday

I staid at home and took care of baby for Annie to go to meeting. In the evening I went myself. It has been a very dull day. Mellie came down at evening. I seem to get so little time to write. Received a letter from Ort [Orson F. Whitney] to night.13

16 January 1882 • Monday

Went to the Office tried hard all day to get the paper out but could not succeed lots of folks all the time. Well now there is some talk of an organization in the ward. Br. [Millen] Atwood seems anxious to please and satisfy all . . . [p. 32] {p. 34}

17 January 1882 • Tuesday

This is Mary Jane [Whitney Groo]’s birthday she is 38. Mother [Elizabeth Ann Smith Whitney] is up at Mr. [Erastus F.] Hall’s It is very cold weather. Paper is out and we are mailing. Emeline [Young Wells] is here helping me. Some of the leading ladies have called upon me today. Tomorrow I am going to Centreville

18 January 1882 • Wednesday

Still helping to mail the paper. Mother was taken with a congestive chill and I was sent for immediately, I sent after Joseph [C.] Kingsbury and Mary Jane[.] Joseph said mother should get better, and although she was two hours senseless she revived. I staid all night with her. [p. 33] {p. 35}

19 January 1882 • Thursday

This is the Wedding day of Clarissa H. Young and John D. Spencer. They were married at 1/2 past 9. I do not feel very well for I was sitting up all night. We all went to the reception in the evening about 400 guests– had a very nice time

20 January 1882 • Friday

Went to Centerville to attend a Conference held three meetings Sister [Mary Isabella Hales] Horne was with me, had a good attendance.14 Mrs. E. H. [Elizabeth Hoagland] Cannon is very sick. Came home on the evening train felt very nervous indeed, Andre was here I had my French lesson– [p. 34] {p. 36}

21 January 1882 • Saturday

All day in the Office again went to see Aunt Eliza, had to have more papers. Went to see Aunt Eliza she was 78 years old took her two or three little trifling presents She seemed greatly pleased.15 Had a letter from Dr. [Ellen Brooke] Ferguson good news from Aunt Zina [Diantha Huntington Young].

22 January 1882 • Sunday

Conference in the Assembly Hall of the young folks Association. I was invited to speak which I did. proposed a lecture committee which was accepted and I was made Chairman of the Committee.16 In the evening went to the ward meeting. [p. 35] {p. 37}

23 January 1882 • Monday

Bishop Atwood came up to see me. Mrs. [Elizabeth Hoagland] Cannon is much worse nothing can save her but the power of God.

Mother Whitney is still suffering greatly. We spent the evening with Aunt Eliza, Annie feels very bad about Mrs. Cannon

24 January 1882 • Tuesday

This is a very stormy day have been so busy all day long. Went to call on the wives of Nephi Pratt17 with Sister Eliza took dinner with her. My husband came over and spent some time with me enjoyed ourselves very much Went to meeting and spoke on the organization. Y.L.M.I.A.18 [p. 36] {p. 38} It was organized tonight19

25 January 1882 • Wednesday

Was very busy all day it is thought Mrs. Cannon is dying. We all went to Mell’s and took dinner. Adeline [Woodward Earl] and family were there Mary still has rheumatism and Sister Winters is here. Had a letter from Belle, she spoke of Sidney [Sears]’s birthday20

26 January 1882 • Thursday

Mrs. Cannon died at 5 minutes to eleven last night, we did not know it until we read it in the morning paper. I paid $25,00 tithing today– Received a letter from Pres. Sister Zina this evening. Louie & I went down to see mother found her suffering severely. Annie feels very sad wrote to John Q. [p. 37] {p. 39}

27 January 1882 • Friday

Annie was busy all day in looking after the clothing for Sister Cannon, Louie took care of baby for her. I sat up with mother we are all tolerably well have just had a letter from John Q. Br. [George Q.] Cannon telegraphed that his family were not to wear mourning.21

28 January 1882 • Saturday

Engaged a carriage and took Aunt Eliza and Sister [Elizabeth Anderson] Howard to see Mother, took the Esquire down to see Mrs. Cannon’s children,22 Aunt Eliza and Sister Howard and myself administered to her. She know[s] us I think, Mary Jane is having a very hard time. The boys are all there.23 [p. 38] {p. 40}

29 January 1882 • Sunday

Mrs. Cannon’s funeral today from the 14th Ward schoolhouse. I went this morning at seven o’clock to help dress her. She was nicely dressed indeed. We took a cross an anchor and a wreath of flowers had a carriage, Belle came down yesterday to attend the funeral

30 January 1882 • Monday

Belle and children are here. Mr. [Septimus Wagstaff] Sears has gone to San Francisco for the benefit of his health. Mother Whitney is still very low & suffers a great deal I have been with her all I could. Orson [K. Whitney] and Joshua [K. Whitney] will not keep sober. It is very cold weather indeed [p. 39] {p. 41}

31 January 1882 • Tuesday

Mother has been so bad we all thought she would die. I had a letter from Aunt Zina & Dr. Ferguson, they seem disappointed about not going to Washington. Mrs. [Annie Gibson] Sharp and Nett [Jeanette Sharp] are at home but I have not seen them. Lou went up today and Joe [Joseph Sharp] came home with her.