May 1890

1 May 1890 • Thursday

Several people came in to tell me of the lovely Fast Meeting in the 18th Ward, I could not go and it does seem strange that I should be so hindered. In the morning train Aunt Zina and Zina Young [Williams] Card arrived with her boy Joseph [Y. Card] and little Zina [Young Card] I went over for a minute to see her & found others there greeting he[r] Phebe Beattie came and was just rampant against Br. Geo. Q. Cannon thought he was jealous of Willard Young her brother, talked very hard about him, was in a dreadful temper.1 Went to Br. [Edward] Stevenson’s party in the evening in the 14th ward. He was 70 years old– 2 or 300 people assembled his daughter & son-in-law2 arrived from New York the same evening ’twas a very large party– and a pleasant one– [p. 145] {p. 147}

2 May 1890 • Friday

Busy day paper not out & such an effort on our part to get everything ready– News from Verona that she had sore-throat and it made us quite gloomy. Baby doing much better and every hope of its thriving. I wish she were not so far away where we could see her Daisie seems quite content however wants her to come here and so on but not to go home (just as well people like that live longer and enjoy more I am not of that nature– Zine [Zina Smoot Whitney] has been to see us with all the children. Was invited to Emily Richards to meet the [Nathan] Tanner family. Was invited today to attend the Anniversary meeting at South Cotton Wood on May 17. but shall not be able to go I am sure [p. 146] {p. 148}

3 May 1890 • Saturday

This was Sister Bathsheba W. Smiths birthday and I meant to have called upon her but was prevented so many things to do went off to Ogden by five o’clock train. Suffrage meeting in the 14th Ward. I do not like holding the meetings there it seems to me to mix up the two kinds of meetings political and spiritual Sister Smith was 68 today born in 1822. she is a very sweet woman, an innocent nature, she is pure in spirit and has a beautiful presence. Although not so brilliant as some women she has a great deal of integrity and her sweet face and gentle manner recommend her everywhere ’mong young or old. [p. 147] {p. 149}

4 May 1890 • Sunday

Went up to Ogden on the morning train stayed all day and visited with Annie and the children, could not go out for a ride because of some gentle spring rain. Succeeded in having a nice dinner cooked it ourselves Emma gone out. It is a beautiful month and the lilacs are in bloom and such a sweetness pervades the air. We have not heard just when Sep will come and we are in suspense because we want to be sure and meet him. News from Murray not very satisfactory but still better in some ways than it has been. I am never free from being tired, and my nights are anything but pleasant– sleep better at Annie’s than at home, perhaps because some care is thrown off and I am weary with the ride, [p. 148] {p. 150}

5 May 1890 • Monday

This morning some girls from Bountiful came to ask me to write them a song for May day to crown their queen. I promised to do so although I do not see where the time is to come from. Still I am fully aware that a poet lives longest in his songs, and I must make the attempt. I have almost given up the dreams of my early life to have fame the honor of an author, and must not expect more than the hope of living in the memory of some of my dear friends. The days fly so swiftly and one cannot live always and neither does one desire it. This is an anniversary to me of a day of some moment– 35 years ago I moved to my dear old home How well I recollect the children running up and down carrying some of the little things [p. 149] {p. 151}

6 May 1890 • Tuesday

We have heard Sep will be here soon and I am intending to go to Ogden tonight so as to meet him in the morning. and stay one day there with him– I rushed all day prepared copy and left everything comfortable for the girls at home went here and there to fix everything possible before going and then at the last minute there was so much to be done. Went up on five o’clock train and met Mr. Will [William C.] Jennings & wife [Martha Burgess Jennings] on the street car going from the depot– walked from the Broom hotel & surprised them. We had a pleasant evening together and made all preparations for the morning, children in ecstacies and all of us quite expectant. Retired at a very late hour had a very disagreeable night distressed perhaps by undue excitement. [p. 150] {p. 152}

7 May 1890 • Wednesday

This is another anniversary day, the first on which I received money for literary work– six dollars for one week in May– I can never forget the gratitude I felt that I had been preserved to accomplish as much as that. We had just moved the office of the Woman’s Exponent from the old Phelps Corner the Sloan Building into an office owned by Pres. [Brigham] Young and which had been previously occupied by Joseph A. Young as an office for his business. It was much more convenient in every respect rooms were down stairs and nearer my home and the girls who were at school only half a block away. Pres. Young wished the woman’s paper to be near his own office so as he could <send> over any time and have ladies who called upon him call on us [p. 151] {p. 153}

8 May 1890 • Thursday

This is the anniversary of the birthday of Mary Ann [Needham] Sears & of Jethrro Whitney both born on one day one in Council Bluffs and the other in Winter Quarters it is a fine day only I am too busy for words to express my own feelings We are looking for Sep from San Francisco going on East to St. Louis, expecting him to stay over a few days. I have been trying to get my work in such a shape as to allow me a little time but it does seem almost impossible. So many things come one after another. I have finished the May songs and they are gone at last and I am very glad, it will be a pretty good song for the settlements outside to have for May Festivals and so on3 Went up to Ogden [p. 152] {p. 154}

9 May 1890 • Friday

<Went to Mrs. [Sallie Thompson] Proctor’s lecture and was introduced> This morning Sep arrived from San Francisco Annie and I met him at the depot and he went up with us to the house In the afternoon we had a nice ride and Sep and I came down on the five forty train Nate [Nathan] Sears. Hebe [Heber J. Sears]’s wife and baby4 were on. Geo. Cresmon [Crismon] whom Sep knew and one or two others. A party for Bry [Briant H.] Wells at Aunt Martha’s and we are all invited Did not know what about taking Sep so decided not to go and Sep and Daisie went to the Theatre. I stayed at home and fixed up things here. It is nice to have Sep but I do wish I understood him better. He seems very unhappy to me, and I feel so bad about it. The weather is favorable and only the dust to annoy us in that respect. My heart is full so tenderly touched I know not what to do. [p. 153] {p. 155}

10 May 1890 • Saturday

Of all the sad anniversaries none has been more so than this one and particularly so this year. There are many reasons why– Lord have mercy and give me grace to endure all trials and help me in my utmost need. Went out to do some errands and to get some necessary things, took the city papers etc. Sep has been in today but went out in the evening to the theatre– came home however Daisie went to practise. it almost seems strange to be here on Saturday night. Saw Mr. Stevens [Evan Stephens] and spoke to him of the music and he promised it for tomorrow. Wrote a letter to my husband tonight full of good feelings [p. 154] {p. 156}

11 May 1890 • Sunday

This morning Sep went out and Daisie to Church I went to the post office had a letter for Sep from his mother & Dot. Sep came in and got his letters and went up to Clint [Clarissa Young Spencer]s to dinner I stayed at home and copied some poems and then cleaned some places up. Daisie came & we had dinner John Morgan spoke in the Tabernacle today. I went to Evan Stephens & Sep to his Uncle John [J. Sears]’s and Daisie to a church entertainment or meeting of some sort Sep came home and went to sleep at Mary Ann [Needham Sears]’s I wrote to Mell a long letter 8 pages– [p. 155] {p. 157}

12 May 1890 • Monday

<Mrs. Jones called today Annie was out stayed some time> The first thing Sep came over from Mary Ann’s then Mr. Wilson of Pittsburg[h] came and soon after Aunt Zina from Brigham City telling me that Sister Harriet [Squires] Snow was dead, departed this life at 3 A.M. May 12. aged 70 last September– 13. She stayed with me last October Conference and went from here to Manti. I parted from her at the depot– and shall never see her more. John Q. Annie and all the children came today from Ogden– Annie and I went to the grave yard called at Martha’s, Susan’s and Nettie’s. Daisie took the children to the Butterfly Ball in Grand Opera [p. 156] {p. 158}

13 May 1890 • Tuesday

This is an anniversary to be remembered, Sep is here & John Q. came down for a few minutes, did not dine with us, gave Annie money to buy a silk dress. Annie has been out to see some of the folks Clint, Mira [Shamira Young Rossiter] Nabbie [Young Clawson] & Eva [Evelyn Young Davis] not one of them at home went up to see Zine called at Nab’s and Abbie’s she was gone to Coalville. We all had dinner together and Sep with us. It is more of my family than I have had together for a long time We had a nice pleasant evening though Daisie had a cold and could not sing for us. We all enjoyed the time very much In the evening it is very seldom any one calls unless by appointment Daisie went to the Opera with Mr. Hoffman how strangely everything comes about [p. 157] {p. 159}

14 May 1890 • Wednesday

Anxiety and care Sep thinks of going away and the thoughts of his going alone is dreadful to me. He has had two letters today one from his mother and one from a friend & Dot– He has written every day to his mother since he came here. Zine has been to see Annie today also May and lots of others. Annie went to dinner to Sarah [Jenkins] Cannon’s Abram’s wife took all the children Rosie [Rosina Matthews Cannon Lambert] went too and Mamie & Emily [H. Cannon] Sister Richards was <sent> here and invited me to go to Logan to attend Conference on Saturday, F. S. [Franklin S. Richards] came and also his father5 to induce me to go but my hands are so full of work. This is our last evening together Daisie sung some for us, Sep. went and called on Allie Davis and she gave him her picture– Geo. Q. and Sep– slept together everything is ready for him to go in the <morning> [p. 158] {p. 160}

15 May 1890 • Thursday

This morning Sep started I went with him to the depot and went in the Pullman with him. Bade him Goodbye, we had telephoned John Q. to see him in Ogden. We had a busy day– and at 4 o’clock Annie and the children started off. I felt lonely and thought I would begin to write, when a messenger came from Big-Cotton-wood to say Aunt Presendia and Aunt Bathsheba had been thrown out of the carriage and injured, and I must send Dr. Pratt and Aunt Zina out immediately. They started off about 6 p.m. I felt very sorrowful over the affair and could not sleep– with so many grievances it seems wonderful I can keep up but it is hard work for me and I have to make a great exertion Commenced Hephzibah’s 21st. Ch. to night [p. 159] {p. 161}

16 May 1890 • Friday

This is a sad anniversary to me three years ago this morning6 that dreadfully agonizing scene– all day it hangs over me & I am weighed down in the very depths as it were. I have no words in which to express my sorrow, the loneliness I feel and yet here I am chained down to work even on a day like this there is no rest no leisure. A note came from Sister Sarah G. [Griffith] Richards & a bouquet of flowers, and the sweet remembrance was like a sacred offering to the loved one. I went on the car to the cemetery with the flowers, alone & my heart was sad sad indeed– I felt my cup was full to overflowing, and I reflected on many things the future, O, how sorrowful, was my heart– how desolate life seemed to me when thinking of all my losses. [p. 160] {p. 162}

17 May 1890 • Saturday

<Anniversary of Logan Temple and Manti Temple dedication>7 This morning I was wakened out of a sound sleep by a ring one distinct stroke, and lo and behold the washstand at the head of my bed was in flames. There was water in the pitcher and I poured it quickly and in a moment the fire was extinguished, but it was only a miracle as it were that saved us for it could not have been two minutes more before the flame would have reached my pillow and I should have been burned and perhaps Daisie too– How grateful I feel that I was warned in time, and spared such a tragedy. I prepared to go to the Suffrage meeting in the 14th, Ward but word came to Dr. Pratt to go to Cotton Wood and she wanted me to go too and so I did of course saw Aunt Presendia and she spoke to me very sweetly had such a pleasant ride and arrived home about 9 p.m. [p. 161] {p. 163}

18 May 1890 • Sunday

I was very weary after the ride of last night and tried to rest myself. Rose late went up to Zina’s & afterwards to the Post Office Ort called and walked with me to the Tabernacle He preached too a most interesting sermon on the life and mission of Joseph the Prophet. 8|Lydia Ann & Kate have returned from the Temple at Manti. A fire broke out just after noon in Denwoodey’s [Dinwoodey] furniture store and though the engine was soon on the spot and efforts made by the fire company, it was all burned down, to the ground. Called on Sister Smith who was hurt by by being thrown from a carriage, went to see Dr. Barney’s new house wrote letters to Sep. & Verona sent them off also Janie Eldridge [Jane Jennings Eldredge] [p. 162] {p. 164}

19 May 1890 • Monday

Today I arranged my work to attend the Primary meeting in the 19th Ward Miss Bessie [Mary Elizabeth] Dean Pres’t Sisters Louie Felt, Ellen Clawson Lydia Ann Wells were also visitors.9 Rode home with Sister Clawson called to see Sister B. W. Smith on my way she seems in great pain although improving. After coming home learned that the Supreme Court had rendered an adverse decision to our Church leases.10 The blow falls heavily upon this people.

Daisie went to the theatre with [Charlie] Johnson to see Wilson Barrett & Miss [Mary] Eastlake in “Claudian.” I was at home writing away on Hephzibah. and trying to wind up my story. Could not help feeling somewhat disappointed [p. 163] {p. 165}

20 May 1890 • Tuesday

To day I have written a letter to Belle– how sad it makes me feel to think of Sep being away. Daisie wrote to Dot. I called on Maggie Sharpe [Margaret Condie Sharp] to give her Aunt Presendia’s message. Br. & Sister F. D. Richards left for Manti this morning to do some Temple Work. Ort has been in and was in excellent spirits, as Br. Woodruff had given him the opportunity of writing the History of Utah with a suitable salary. Dr. [John O.] Williams from Colorado intends publishing it at his own expense and also pay for its being wrtten in a fixed salary. Daisie went to the Lake six o’clock train with Ellen. I called on Zina this evening. Saw Jos. E. Taylor who has been acquitted on the plea of un-co-hab–11 [p. 164] {p. 166}

21 May 1890 • Wednesday

This is the anniversary of the dedication of the Manti Temple when there were so many manifestations and such angelic music that was of the heavens heavenly– it is also the anniversary of one of the most dreadful heart-rending days of my life–12 the agony, the misery, the tearing asunder of the most delicate fibres of my nature was beyond all that I have ever known. John Q. came down and went to the graveyard and took some flowers and afterwards I went and took Daisie and called at Br. Hilton’s13 on the way got a quantity of snow balls and at Br. [George] Reynolds and got geraniums and other beautiful flowers we fixed the graves lovely & went to Belle’s children & also to Mell’s afterwards [p. 165] {p. 167}

22 May 1890 • Thursday

Today has been warm and I have run about considerably and attended to some few matters. felt very restless and uncomfortable and worried even about many things. Sep sent a letter in my care to Allie Davis and I delivered it and saw Evie, Nett, Nabbie & a lot of the children. Just after train time Sister Jane Richards came in & surprised me as I had thought they were still in Manti. Sister Richards & I went up to Aunt Zina’s and she told us that Aunt Presendia would be brought to the City today. Joseph [Kimball] her son and Aunt Zina would come. Br. Franklin [D. Richards] has gone off to Washington to-day. [p. 166] {p. 168}

23 May 1890 • Friday

This morning rose early to read the revise. Daisie was not at all well, had a bad dream and was quite ill. After getting some little accomplished I had Sister Kimball and Dr. Barney call– Sister E. S. Taylor, & the Teachers Sisters Allen And Cook I gave them fifty cts. Yesterday I gave a dollar to a poor boy who had his arm taken off– wanted to get him a pea nut stand. I went to the milliners to see about having my hat fixed. Had a strange lady asking all sorts of questions. Br. Edward Brain died today at his home in the 20th. Ward– Daisie had a letter from home and one from Mrs. Crichlow [Mabel Ayers Critchlow] and I had one from Mell. Daisie went to a Sociable at the Presbyterian Church tonight– [p. 167] {p. 169}

24 May 1890 • Saturday

This has been a sad day to me very– so low-spirited and so many things seemed to go wrong. John Q. came down to attend the meeting of the Literary & Scientific Association and was in town all day I went down to the Misses [Georgina and Helen] Mathers and home again, called to get my dress cleaned (grey flannel) took Sep’s clothes to the Laundry.

This morning had two ladies asking all sorts of questions. they were perfect ladies though, and one can better endure from those who know how to be courteous even if it is a little overdone. Called on Sister Smith with Sister Sarah Jane [Jenne] Cannon, she seems very bad still, and they have to be very careful of her in every way. Went off to Ogden on the 7 five train p.m. and arrived about nine o’clock found all well, had a pleasant evening with Annie [p. 168] {p. 170}

25 May 1890 • Sunday

Rose very late– the children had already gone to Sunday School and Sister Richards came almost as soon as I was up– she stayed two or three hours and talked over all sorts of things now transpiring. Afterwards I helped Annie with dinner, the girl had left the day before (Emma Weaver–) and after dinner we had a ride in the carriage and then went to the train. D. & R. G. 1/2 past 7– p.m. had a very pleasant trip down and came home just after nine. Found Daisie here & Ellen & Joe keeping her company. Finished a letter commenced on the 22 to my husband & sat up after wards reading and meditating on my life and the circumstances with which I am surrounded [p. 169] {p. 171}

26 May 1890 • Monday

This morning Sister Adelaide [Whiteley] Ridges came to see me, she wanted to know what she should do about being set apart to go on a trip to Europe to gather up her genealogy14 and visit her friends.

I advised her to go to the Gardo and see Pres. Woodruff and she invited me to go with her which I did most willingly. There she was blest and set apart by Pres. Jos. F. Smith and Brigham Young of the Apostles, and Pres. Woodruff signed her recommend and then we went to Jos. E. Taylor who also signed it as the Pres of the Stake. Helen [Mar Kimball Whitney] has been to see me, and told me she had succeeded in making a change from where she is now to a place in the 18th Ward where she can have a lovely view, next her Br. Sol [Solomon F. Kimball]. Daisie went to the Choral tonight– and I was left alone wrote to Mrs. [Lydia Coombs] Penniman of Wisconsin and sent receipts– [p. 170] {p. 172}

27 May 1890 • Tuesday

This morning Bishop O. F. Whitney called and spent an hour or more, told me he had written one chapter of the History of Utah. Zine & the children have gone to Provo to spend the summer. Sister Horne, Aunt Zina, Zina Y. Card and Sister E. S. Taylor have all been in today. I have been going over old papers and accounts. May has been to see me. No letters today from any one except on business. The weather is very warm for this season of the year and there is much sickness. I have been alone this evening assorting and arranging old musty papers. Daisie has gone to the choral. I am greatly disappointed in not receiving a letter from my husband sooner. Sent one off yesterday he must receive it tonight I think, hope he will be satisfied with it. [p. 171] {p. 173}

28 May 1890 • Wednesday

This morning I rose much depressed in spirits and through the entire day was not able to throw off the gloom that oppressed me. This evening feel somewhat calmer and more peaceful in my spirit. I took a very long walk called on Mattie [Martha Jane] Horne Tingey and then went to hunt the German girl for Annie– learned of the death of Rosie Gumpler Warr who used to live with us– died in child-bed. As soon as I heard it almost it struck me of her being with us in our great trouble, and tonight I have been thinking whether Louie has met her. Daisie and I went out this evening about dusk and called at [Duncan M.] Mc’Allister’s window dressed up for the May Festival with May-pole and ribbsons & dolls– We are alone tonight Daisie is writing to her mother. I have no courage to work yet feel the necessity of doing so very much. [p. 172] {p. 174}

29 May 1890 • Thursday

This morning before I was up a telegram came from San Francisco to say Belle would be in Ogden Saturday morning, Next came a telephone message from Sister Richards saying her sister [Sarah Snyder Richards] would be down on the 12 o’clock train, Sarah Cannon Abram’s wife took me to the depot with grey prince, how natural it seemed to ride behind him, the train was late, went down at 1/2 past one & met her brought her up to my place stayed here till evening. Had the yard cleaned paid three dollars. Flowers for our graves were 1.00, Letter from Belle today. Last night I was writing on a story and it worked me up to the highest pitch of excitement, remembering the sorrows of the past & the grief of the present. [p. 173] {p. 175}

30 May 1890 • Friday

Left on the early morning train for Ogden, John Q. came to meet me and little Q. found they had also learned about Belle coming, and as much as I had. I stayed all day with Annie & the children– she worked very hard John Q. came home late and as there was no paper, we had the pleasure of his company. Decoration day and the Festival in Salt Lake City, but I came away to be with Annie & help prepare for Belle’s coming. We had quite a hard day of it at least Annie had and was very weary and over-fatigued. There are many griefs and disappointments in this world and none of us have as good and easy a time perhaps as we think we ought– [p. 174] {p. 176}

31 May 1890 • Saturday

This morning John Q. & Annie went to the depot and I stayed with the children, and soon came back bringing Belle & then John Q. went for Daisie and she soon came from Salt Lake. She sung in the Festival yesterday; and has taken quite a severe cold. Belle is in good spirits and looks remarkably well, she is on her way East and will stop at St. Louis with Sep Jr. We visited all day the four of us Belle Annie Daisie and myself. Daisie sang two or three songs but was too hoarse at last. Sister [Sarah Emmett] Browning & Olive [Browning Wallace] came to see Belle, no one else knew. We stayed up until quite late and Belle was to sleep with me, the first time for many years. [p. 175] {p. 177}

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May 1890, The Diaries of Emmeline B. Wells, accessed May 20, 2024