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February 1882

1 February 1882 • Wednesday

Today has been damp and gloomy, miserable enough– I have been to mother’s and intend sitting up– Rob was here and Lou and him had some disagreement– both seemed to be melancholy, he staid until midnight Belle & Annie both seemed immensely disgusted with it. [p. 40] {p. 42}

2 February 1882 • Thursday

Went down to mother’s and staid all the morning and towards 3 o’clock returning past the City Hall saw Rob coming out and called to him, he said he was going away to Butte, Montana for a week to get a rest and see after some business, had not told Louie.

3 February 1882 • Friday

Rob went yesterday, the Herald contained the news.1 Mother is no better Lucile is coming down with mumps, Lou went to practise as usual. All day we expected mother would die, sat up all night with John [K. Whitney]. She has been administered to again and again. [p. 41] {p. 43}

4 February 1882 • Saturday

Mr. [Isaac] Groo came up to say they thought mother could not last an hour. I went down immediately and staid all day Mr. [Frank] Cole invited us all up there to meet Mr. Kelly from Sparta, sent a carriage, Annie Louie and I all went. spent a pleasant evening– staid until eleven

5 February 1882 • Sunday

Went down to mother’s came home in time for Belle and Louie to go to meeting. Annie wrote to John Q. We were all gay and happy I commenced a letter to Br. G. Q. Cannon– at eleven o’clock in the evening George Q2 was taken with croup and we all staid up all night– [p. 42] {p. 44}

6 February 1882 • Monday

George Q. is no better, we have been doing all day everything possible to relieve him, sent for the Elders to administer to him. Our hearts are very sad indeed, we all love him so much. We have given him croup remedies that we always used before. He is no better. My husband came down and Angus M. [Cannon] W. [William] W. Taylor & John Smith the patriarch all four administered.

7 February 1882 • Tuesday

June [Junius F. Wells] came this morning and Br. C. Wilkin [Charles H. Wilcken],3 baby is very bad. We sent for Dr. [James M.] Dart Homeopathy, he came about three o’clock and pronounced it membranous croup– he is suffering intensely; it is agonizing to witness it. We are all nearly broken hearted– [p. 43] {p. 45}

8 February 1882 • Wednesday

This has been one of the most dreadful days– baby has suffered so much– the nights from 12 to four and six in the morning are too horrible for words– It is almost more than human nature can endure to see the little innocent one suffer Mell came to stay to night.

9 February 1882 • Thursday

I feel much encouraged today– the Dr. brought an atomizer with him it seems a wonderful instrument, Mell took me to see Mother she is still alive and says Father’s time is the best– She is quite reconciled to die– Tonight baby seems so much better Annie has been feeling very bad indeed [p. 44] {p. 46}

10 February 1882 • Friday

There is a decided improvement in the baby and we all feel very grateful that he has been spared to us, and hope soon to see him well again. Grace Groo would have been 16 today–Mother is very low and suffering great pain. Percival [Woods] too is quite ill

11 February 1882 • Saturday

I have so much anxiety and so much to do that it seems as if I could not keep up– there are many duties in this life that press heavily upon one– Mother is much the same baby growing better all the time– Annie grows more cheerful. Pres. A. M. Cannon has been very attentive to him since his illness. [p. 45] {p. 47}

12 February 1882 • Sunday

Today Sister Eliza R. & Sister Bathsheba W. [Bigler] Smith and myself went down to wash and anoint Mother Whitney. She was quite insensible & when Sister E. R. S. S. anointed her she said for her burial. We returned home and took dinner and I went back and staid until very late with her

13 February 1882 • Monday

Before I was up they came to say Mother was dying this was the third time However I went and remained all day but there was no material change, only a gradual failing of all vital power. I staid all night and it was just the same– she could not die & yet she had no power to rally. I came away feeling sad and sorrowful [p. 46] {p. 48}

14 February 1882 • Tuesday

I had been all night with mother and left there at about 1/2 past one she was suffering some when I left but not as much but she smiled on me & seemed to comprehend what I had been saying to Mary Jane & Mr. Groo– I never saw her more until the damp of death had gathered on her brow

15 February 1882 • Wednesday

This morning at six o’clock I was sent for the fourth time to say Mother was dying, I went as soon as possible. When I arrived I felt I was almost too late– yet she lived until ten minutes past two when she breathed her last I was by her side. so was Mary [Jane] Mr. Groo and Vilate [Whitney Groo]– I went with <John Whitney to see about the Assembly Hall> [p. 47] {p. 49}

16 February 1882 • Thursday

I did all the looking after Mother’s clothing for her burial. Just as it was in Nauvoo and other places I looked after her wants and see that all was done in proper order. Twiss [Naamah Young] & Eliza Burgess Young made her clothing in the Lion House. I took it down the same evening it was very cold and very bad walking.

17 February 1882 • Friday

Went early in the morning to dress and prepare mother for burial. Mary and Sister Sarah [Gillett] Groo assisted me– the funeral was very good– Pres. Wells, L. [Lorenzo] D. Young & Joseph F. [Smith] were the speakers.4 the singing was excellent and all things were done in order. It was a very stormy day– [p. 48] {p. 50}

18 February 1882 • Saturday

Went to see Pres. Taylor yesterday with Sister Horne about petitions to Congress. He told us to prepare something forthwith. Today we go to Aunt Eliza’s to see what she will help us in have commenced making notes. This evening my husband and myself talked over the matter and decided on a form

19 February 1882 • Sunday

Sister Horne and I both went to Sister Eliza’s room & I wrote out the petition from my notes and we decided to take them over to Pres. Taylor next morning. In the evening we had several callers and I too had company and although I had some special work to do I had a pleasant time & all was satisfactory [p. 49] {p. 51}

20 February 1882 • Monday

Went to the Office very early and others were also there– petitions were read and comments made. Pres. Taylor gave free expression to his thoughts and views. Joseph F. and two of the Twelve were present It has been deemed best to send Moses Thatcher and John Henry Smith to Washington

21 February 1882 • Tuesday

Last evening a private council was held at the President’s office and this morning at eight we had to go again, we have had so many hindrances today. Petitions are all ready printed to send out–5 Mrs. [Elizabeth Ware] Packard of Chicago called on me today and gave me some idea of her work among women.6 [p. 50] {p. 52}

22 February 1882 • Wednesday

John Henry Smith & Moses <Thatcher went to Washington leaving town today>

This is the anniversary of the birth of Gen. [George] Washington it is being kept as a holiday. At evening Mr. Groo & Mary Jane came and spent a few hours. We all went to the graveyard. I always feel like going there on any holiday. I miss Emma [Emeline Whitney Wells] more on these days than any others. Tomorrow we intend to have some vis<itors.>

23 February 1882 • Thursday

Today we are to have some of the members of the Legislature to dine with us Joseph F. & Sarah Ellen [Richards Smith], F. [Francis] M. Lyman and wife7 W. [William] W. Cluff, Erastus Snow and Minerva [White Snow], Sisters [Hannah Tapfield] King and Howard and my husband. June came and we had a most enjoyable time especially so to me for I delight in company of <this kind> [p. 51] {p. 53}

24 February 1882 • Friday

Went to the office and worked very hard indeed. Sister Horne came to see me, we called on Helen [Mar Kimball] Whitney. The weather is very disagreeable & atmosphere damp and heavy I have written some important letters. This is the birthday of Mr. [William C.] Hendrie born 1844– I wonder why he never writes, Mrs. [Sarah Ann Booth] Needham died on the 22d.8

25 February 1882 • Saturday

Today has been busy, meeting in the 14th. Ward but I could not attend. Had a great many calls from ladies, in the evening Mr. Sears and Belle came down to attend the funeral. Mr. Sears slept here with Belle. he talks of moving down, seemed quite like himself. None of the children came. The weather is disagreeable [p. 52] {p. 54}

26 February 1882 • Sunday

Went to Mrs. Needham’s funeral in the morning in the afternoon Mr. & Mrs. [Samuel and Charlotte Weissbrodt] Francis of Morgan were here and took dinner. We had a pleasant time Louie sung for them and all was satisfactory The preaching today was excellent by Erastus Snow Louie went. baby is still better.

27 February 1882 • Monday

Wind and rain, a letter from John Q. informs us of his having heard of his mother’s death. I wrote today to my sister Lucy [Woodward Hewlings] to Theodore Stanton in Paris and took care of baby and let Annie & Louie go to the theatre. It is nearly the close of winter– and time hastens on rapidly. I went to see Aunt Eliza today Helen was with me. [p. 53] {p. 55}

28 February 1882 • Tuesday

This is the day on which I must reckon my age– last year I received a valuable present a gold watch this morning I was presented a pair of kid gloves from my little grandson George Q. I have had many callers today– Mell gave me a half dozen fruit plates hand painting, & Rob gave me two pieces of statuary & gave Lou a canary.

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February 1882, The Diaries of Emmeline B. Wells, accessed July 22, 2024