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April 1888

1 April 1888 • Sunday

A rainy morning & Q. did not go to Sunday School. I went to the House and to meeting though Annie was very sick. Louise came up town with us and also Margaret. Ellen had painted Easter eggs for them, such pretty ones. I was late at meeting, Br. [Joseph M.] Tanner from Provo gave us a sermon upon the Holy Land and Will [William J.] Woodbury who has just returned from a mission told us of his experiences. John Q. came for me & brought Q. I mailed a letter to Bishop [Edwin] Stratford of Ogden and one to Belle in San Francisco and then came down to the farm. John Q. went to Ward meeting & Annie & I were alone. [p. 116] {p. 119}

2 April 1888 • Monday

<Br. [John Haskell] Woodbury came over & administered to Annie last night> Went up late but tried to do all I could. Bought Margaret a pin for birthday and did other errands Dr. Pratt came and we went out to buy some carpet and so on for the Hospital. Went to Dinwoodey to R. K. Thomas to Culmer Bro’s and succeeded in doing something towards what we wanted. I was not in favor of it all but Dr. Pratt dragged me into it. Found Annie very ill indeed when we came home, throat and ear very painful and her temperature and fever very high. I was much concerned and slept very little indeed. She is suffering so I can scarcely endure to see it. I feel it most acutely especially as last year the suffering [p. 117] {p. 120} was so severe of another one of mine.

3 April 1888 • Tuesday

This is Margaret’s birthday. I gave her the pin Annie a sash John Q. a silver spoon. Louise came up town to her Aunt Mells today to visit It has been raining and blowing. Yesterday my husband came & wanted me to go up to his rooms in the evening but I could not as I must see to Annie a little and I was obliged to refuse him. Abram [Cannon] & Jode went down to administer to Annie today. John Q. sent the buggy to take them. My husband came towards evening to ask after Annie and see if I could come up but I could not on her account and I had to tell him so. [p. 118] {p. 121}

4 April 1888 • Wednesday

It rains this morning Annie is better. The ordinance has been administered to her & has taken effect. She is healed. Louise went to the Matinee with Verona It was the play of She. I took her over to the other house afterwards to see Sanford [Sandford W. Hedges]. Saw Cal [Clara Wells Hedges] who put me much in mind of Louie. This is an anniversary never to be forgotten by me & I know that Belle can not efface it from her memory whatever may happen. O my Louie what anguish and suffering you had to endure and how shall I ever recover from the shock and the nervous strain it caused to me. [p. 119] {p. 122}

5 April 1888 • Thursday

<memorable day Belle will go to Laurel Hill Cemetery Handed Ort a letter from May> Annie is certainly better Went up kind of early and to meeting F. [Francis] A. Hammond Henry Herriman, Seymour Young and Andrew Jensen were the speakers. The Lord will comfort Zion was the Anthem. At noon my husband came in and I had some of the sisters to lunch with me. Aunt Zina & Margaret [Pierce] Young Sister Howard, & Sisters Tate & Smith of Tooele also Br. [Charles] Monk of Spanish Fork. Read my revise in the afternoon and had lots of callers. After meeting Aunt Zina came and finally Br. Monk & Robert Wilson to sleep all night. I left them and came down to Annie’s found her much better [p. 120] {p. 123}

6 April 1888 • Friday

This is the real anniversary of the Church organization. It seems the most suitable day to open Conference. Had some sisters again to lunch with me. Aunt Zina & Bathsheba, Sisters Snow M. W. Horne M. Isabella [Horne] and Howard & Clawson E. C. [Ellen Spencer Clawson] <Sarah M. Kimball was one> my husband came in too. Br. Monk was with us. Sister Agnes [Cross] Douglas from Pay[s]on and Sarah [Price] Roberts from Goshen. I could not go to meeting as the paper was on hand and so many coming in to do business. At evening came down to Annie’s. We talked over the International Council speeches and had quite a pleasant time with John Q. and the little ones. There are a great many people in the City from the Country places. & business is brisk [p. 121] {p. 124}

7 April 1888 • Saturday

Another busy day, late going up, very John Q. has to stay away from his work on account of Annie’s illness. The dust is fearful. had the sisters in to lunch Sisters Mary [Mitchell] Pitchforth & Maranda [Miranda Cazier] Bryan & grand-daughter of Nephi– Aunt Zina Sister Mary Ann [Price] Hyde of Spring City, B. W. Smith, M. I. Horne, [blank space] my husband came in the mean time. Br. Monk was here too. Strangers in the afternoon and the paper issued. 2 ladies whom I had met in Washington D. C. Miss Saxton1 & Mrs. Roberts also Amelia [Folsom] Young and others; tired out at evening came down here late. My husband came to see me after the Council of the Apostles and stayed about an hour or so. John Q. came up for me. [p. 122] {p. 125}

8 April 1888 • Sunday

Ten years today since my darling Emma’s death. How sad it seems, and how much I should like to go to my dear old home and in the garden and garret pour out my hidden grief. But even this luxury of sorrow is denied me and I languish for the retirement so congenial to my feelings in the past. I came up about eleven in morning and went to my home behind the wall. Alone and sorrowful I spent a little time in prayer and then dressed in my black silk and best Spanish dollman [dolman] to Sister Bathsheba W. Smith’s to dinner with the sisters who had been invited there. Zina D. H. Y. M. I. Horne, M. W. Snow M. A. Hyde, M. Pitchforth M. Bryan, E. Howard, <S. M. Kimball> & myself At meeting in the afternoon [p. 123] {p. 126} Sister Zina was appointed by the Conference in place of Sister Eliza to preside over the Relief Society. No counselors were named and Sisters Sarah M. Kimball Romania B. Pratt & M. I. Horne were sustained in the places they occupied before as Secretary Assistant Sec. & Treasurer. No meeting of the Hospital Board today and consequently I had to notify the members.

9 April 1888 • Monday

Yesterday after meeting Sister Howard came over with me and we entertained some strangers for a time– then Sisters Rachel Grant and E. [Elizabeth Brook] Fox of Franklin called on me. Afterwards Kate & May. The day has been a sad one to me. I drove down to Annie’s early & we had a social evening in the East parlor– tonight has been much the same. [p. 124] {p. 127}

10 April 1888 • Tuesday

A year yesterday since I left the city to go to San Francisco to my sweet Louie– How every chord of my heart is wrung until the agony is almost insupportable and yet no seclusion for me. I must brave it all without retirement, without even the satisfaction of going to the graveyard. I have been trying all day to get an opportunity to absent myself long enough for that but could not. I have been making every effort to write for the last few days but can find no spare moment suitable. The dust is very disagreeable and one feels so nervous with the dust wind & smoke. Have had many strangers & every day Aunt Zina Sister [Jane S.] Richards & [Minerva W.] Snow– [p. 125] {p. 128}

11 April 1888 • Wednesday

To day it is 20 <nineteen> years since Belle’s marriage to Mr. Sears– I presume they will celebrate the event with some ceremony to commemmorate the time. Such things keep up a sort of sacredness in the home & in the minds of the children. I hope they will observe it as it seems a fitting occasion for thought and remembrance. It is also ten years today since Emmie’s funeral and that needs no reminder at least not to me or any of our loved ones in the home circle. I know it is said and sung “Home is where the heart is,” & to some extent that is true but to me there is more than words can express in the idea of a genuine home and the surroundings. The house in all its parts & dimensions, the garden or orchard, the well or spring, the brook meadow lanes or woods all or any of these [p. 126] {p. 129} with what they are so strongly identified are sweet and ever recurring memories of love and fondness.2

12 April 1888 • Thursday

Today I went with Aunt Zina and Sister B. W. Smith to the Salt Lake Stake Academy to visit the institution.3 We each of us spoke a few minutes by invitation. Yesterday I drove to the City of the Dead and took a few violets to scatter on the graves of my sweet children. To such places I like to go alone but one cannot always follow one’s inclinations. Sister Zina seems rather elated over being chosen to preside, no doubt she expected it as others did for her. Mell was at Annie’s yesterday. John Q. left for Ogden today to take charge of the Standard4 while Frank J. [Cannon] goes East Annie is not so well– [p. 127] {p. 130}

13 April 1888 • Friday

The Esquire came in today and Helen was there. On Thursday Sister [Martha Youlton] Greenhalgh of Meadow came in to see me and stayed some time visiting with Aunt Zina– Saw Belle [Sybella Johnson] Clayton & baby–5 Sent a little souvenir to Lucile “The seven little Maids.” by Corneel Clayton– Sister Zina & Sarah Kimball were in my parlor visiting with Sister Greenhalgh– Hannah came in while Helen & the Esquire were talking– It is Emeline [Young Well]’s birthday she is 31. I gave her a feather fan Chinese work Annie gave her a white crepe handkerchief– Their father dined with them, with several of their relatives of the mother’s family. Have been excessively pained in my feelings today and my heart aches beyond description [p. 128] {p. 131}

14 April 1888 • Saturday

<David [H.] Cannon’s birthday he is 17.> A terrible disagreeable day hot and dusty, lots of strangers have called on me. Been kept uncommonly busy. Head ached & nerves worn out. No respite whatever– Zoe & colt went tonight to the farm. Annie is to have Zoe. I went down later after having had a visit from my husband who had just come from a funeral with him the late Samuel Bringhurst. where he spoke. He also spoke at the funeral of Sister Susan [Conrad] Wilkinson of the 14th Ward on Tuesday last. His manner towards me is most loving and tender but can never make up for my dear old home which he has taken from me. When I see that others are left in undisturbed possession and know that mine has gone, my heart is too full for utterance [p. 129] {p. 132}

15 April 1888 • Sunday

Wrote to Belle last night & today and have the letter ready to mail. Sent word about the Horne girls and the Educational excursion party. John Q. came down from Ogden by the morning train. The meadow-larks are singing gaily and the spring approaches with rapid strides. The wind is rising and dust filling one’s eyes and mouth.

Wrote my editorial and finished up everything ready for the press. Read my proofs too. I could write a poem if I but had the solitude or rest that I need for it– my nerves have been strung to the utmost tension & I am in that condition of mind that requires strengthening in some sort of way, whereas I am constantly imparting to others. [p. 130] {p. 133}

16 April 1888 • Monday

Went up in pretty good time and prepared more proofs sent off some Receipts paid some bills for the Hospital and had lunch. Br. Clawson called and took me to the Executive Meeting. There were but a few present and we soon came back. Strangers called upon me and we had some interesting conversation. A letter from Belle with Dot’s and the other girls pictures in it. John Q. went off by the afternoon train and Annie came up for the first time since her illness. Lay down a little while in my parlor and Talulah came to stay with her a short time Emeline called too, and I went early home with her. We had quite a pleasant evening with David. [p. 131] {p. 134}

17 April 1888 • Tuesday

Last night had a severe attack of neuralgia in my ear and head. Suffered terribly, today it is lots worse and I am almost wild, have tried every thing Yesterday at 2. p.m. Aunt Zina was set apart for her position as President of the Relief Society. I saw her for a few minutes today and bade her good bye. She goes to Logan tomorrow morning and from there to North Western Canada. Her Counselors have not been chosen, so the affairs remain “in states quo.” Will was taken with gout and hindered from going to Idaho. I went up with Mell to stay over night and Verona went down to stay with Annie. Mell [Melvin D.] Wells took her down there [p. 132] {p. 135}

18 April 1888 • Wednesday

Was very late going down went through the garden and yard with Mell & stayed looking at her flowers and shrubbery. The whole place looks beautiful and the air is fragrant with sweet blossoms. Her home is so pleasant it seems very hard to leave it. I walked over the hill and met some tourists who talked to me and I reffred [referred] them to my husband. Afterwards they called upon me at the office and several others the same day. Annie drove up to select some presents for John Q. for herself and the children. The Esquire, Ort, Sister M. W. Snow & Helen all called also Sarah M. Kimball who spoke to me of accepting the position of Cor. Sec’y [corresponding secretary] to the Relief <Society> [p. 133] {p. 136}

19 April 1888 • Thursday

Went home early with Annie and walked about the grounds for some time. My neuralgia was a little better. This morning came up town went to Office, read my letters, attended to some business, bought some flowers for table & vases drove to the depot and waited for John Q. to arrive from Ogden. Went down with him to the House. We had a very fine dinner chicken & asparagus with other green things and pieplant6 pie with floating island. Enjoyed it very much. John Q. went off by the 4 o’clock train and Annie & I went up town afterward, and passed my dear old home, then we went to Mrs. Carter’s for the package from Belle. Then we drove to the grave-yard to our dear one’s resting place. [p. 134] {p. 137}

20 April 1888 • Friday

Talulah brought up some Lillies of the Valley and planted on Louie’s grave. O, how sad our hearts were, the setting sun, and the grief in our hearts, were almost too much for me. 7|Last night I stayed at the house Annie went home alone. I had a bath and prepared for the morning. Went away by the eight o’clock train to Farmington. Sister Horne was the other invited speaker. We went direct to Br. Ezra [T.] Clark’s and after meeting came back to dinner, In both forenoon and afternoon we addressed the congregation. There was a good attendance.8 Came home on the 7.20 train Annie met me at the depot. I came down home with her and went to bed early, was very tired. I seemed to need rest and so did Annie– [p. 135] {p. 138}

21 April 1888 • Saturday

Came up late and found two ladies waiting for me. Mrs. [Annie] Parish & Mrs. [Elizabeth] Jackson they had heard of me very favorably and were anxious to meet me. They had called the day before and gone over the way and sketched the old arm chair. Mrs. Parish sketched my office through the gateway. I took them to the Lion House parlor & told them its history. I had several other strangers during the day and was much fatigued. Towards evening Mr. Jackson called with his wife and we had some conversation.9 Annie came up and brought the children Q. came on Gipsey. They had tea at Mell’s. Annie had two almond trees put out today that Mell had given her. I drove. home with her was not feeling well at all. [p. 136] {p. 139}

22 April 1888 • Sunday

Yesterday was my brother Manson [Woodward]’s birthday, 66 years old. Today is Emily Wells [Grant], she is 31. John Q. came down from Ogden. I was very weary and sat idle most of the day. My thoughts, however were exceedingly busy with the past. Sad, sad indeed. I wrote a letter to Belle, 16. pages and yet did not tell her half I wanted too. After dinner John Q. went up town and stayed during the evening. Annie sat singing to the children and I was resting in an easy chair. The Emperor Frederic is dying. Roscoe Conkling died last week. Queen Victoria is in Germany. Her daughter the younger Queen and wife of Frederick is not in very good repute among the German people. [p. 137] {p. 140}

23 April 1888 • Monday

Dear little Percival [Woods] would have been ten years old today10 a letter from Belle came asking me to purchase a bouquet of choice flowers for her to lay on the dear one’s grave. I went to Readings and ordered the bouquet and also loose flowers for Annie & myself. I stayed at Annie’s until after John Q. had gone off by the train and then Annie came up and we drove to Mells she had gone to the graveyard and I awaited her coming. Then we went back again with the fresh flowers, & left one or two on the graves of Emmie & Louie. Then up to Percival [Woods] Leslie [Dunford] & Winnie [Woods], then we drove down in the dim gray of the evening. Kate & May called to bid Will Good Bye. I stayed all night. It was a sad time. Percival’s picture had been sent home by the artist– [p. 138] {p. 141}

24 April 1888 • Tuesday

Stayed at Mell’s until noon. Went out in the garden with her and looked everything over. O, how it recalled my own sweet beloved garden! The wind blew up very disagreeable and made the parting with Will all the more gloomy. Mell came down with him in a close carriage and went to the depot. He called and bade me good-bye– I saw that he was much affected. Mell came back and staid awhile. Went down town with Ellen and I was left alone. A strong wind blew up and some bricks fell making such a loud noise that it quite upset me. Annie came afterwards, & went to Talulah’s to the “Big Seven.”11 We drove home after ten and had lunch. The night was dismal, lightning in the West frightful—— [p. 139] {p. 142}

25 April 1888 • Wednesday

During the night wind and rain was terrific. Morning came more quiet, but before we were ready to start the rain poured in torrents. Rose Steingroover’s [Steingruber’s] baby died this morning of diphtheria. At last we set off– I felt almost exasperated– and somehow I wanted to go home to my own old house to lie down and die. But my labors are unceasing and I must not give up– so we came on notwithstanding storm & cold, Annie stayed here and we had dinner and the rain poured and the house leaked and the snow & ice bent my beautiful lilacs to the ground– We had a very busy afternoon and towards evening Annie drove home, I went up to Mells and stayed with them. [p. 140] {p. 143}

26 April 1888 • Thursday

Came late to the office and worked industriously at the paper etc. had lots of callers. John Q. came down from Ogden and <did not> called to see me. We had some fears of his case coming up, yet thought it was postponed until the first of May. Sister Minerva was in Br. Erastus Snow is very sick indeed and has had an operation on one of his eyes as well. He has suffered very greatly and there is little hope of his regaining his sight. Sister Minerva Snow is melancholy and sad; I went down to Annie’s and stayed with her. We talked over many things of the present condition of affairs here in Utah [p. 141] {p. 144}

27 April 1888 • Friday

Have been trying all day to get ready for the Conference tomorrow at Centerville Primary children, had invited Dr. Ellis R. Shipp, but she tells me now she will not be able to go until afternoon, so I thought the matter over and went up to Will James’s and invited Minnie. Then did some other errands and sat up late writing and reading proof. Slept here at the rooms in the Office only Ellen Hitchings here with me– did not have much rest woke early and was very restless and Ellen got up before six to make me tea– Had a letter from Belle & a call from Ort & pleasant interview, Annie & I drove to the 12th Ward & Emily [Cannon] went down [p. 142] {p. 145} to the Farm.

28 April 1888 • Saturday

Went off early, the other ladies did not keep the appointment. Reached Centerville early and drove direct to Sister [Rebecca Cherry] Porter’s house a quaint farm dwelling with large comfortable rooms, and plenty of fruit trees in the yard and lovely lilac bushes. She is a very hospitable woman, and affable in her manner. There is another wife12 with a number of children and they all seem to be very united. The Conference was well attended 300 children, and a variety of exercises, singing very good, went to the schoolhouse to see the children have their pic nic, we dined at Sister [Margaret Harley] Randall’s. Came home Annie came up and took me to the Farm I was very tired and low-spirited. Went to bed early– [p. 143] {p. 146}

29 April 1888 • Sunday

This morning stayed in bed late. John Q. came down from Ogden and as there was no help around he was outside nearly all day. I did a little work in the house to assist Annie and wrote some preparing for the paper. It was a fine day, but Annie felt miserable and there seemed a cloud over the place. These are indeed terrible days for me and for us all, such dark shadows overhanging and there is no telling when daylight will crown the night of our misfortunes. Will has gone away but yet the cruel notices in the papers appear and pierce us to the very quick. O when will peace and consolation come. My heart is broken with the weary waiting, for one ray of hope or joy. [p. 144] {p. 147}

30 April 1888 • Monday

This is Leslie’s birthday and we have ordered some flowers, a bouquet and some choice ones loose. Such delicate and fragrant roses. Mell is going up to the grave. Somehow his little life seems to have been shrouded, and we often thought he would be unhappy, because of his circumStances. He was very bright and intelligent and the accident was such a fearful one. His sufferings were agonizing, and we tried to exercise faith for him, but his fate appeared inevitable. Mell mourned very much and was worn right out. It has been quite an eventful day in many ways. The city is full of tourists and there have been some severe accidents on railway trains east. [p. 145] {p. 148}

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April 1888, The Diaries of Emmeline B. Wells, accessed June 14, 2024