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September 1895

1 September 1895 • Sunday

Sunday, September 1, 1895 There being no Tabernacle meeting today, I sent word to the Bishop by my children who went to Sunday school that I would attend meeting in Farmers Ward at 2 o’clock in the afternoon, but received word in reply that their meeting would be held at 6:30. I attended the meeting at that hour, in company with a number of my family. My nephew, Brother James C. Lambert, was there as a missionary, and after he had made some remarks, I occupied the rest of the time.

2 September 1895 • Monday

Monday, Sept. 2, 1895. This is Labor Day. I came to the office and did considerable work, but it was a general holiday.

3 September 1895 • Tuesday

Tuesday, Sept. 3, 1895 There was a Sugar Co. meeting this morning at 9 o’clock, and on behalf of the Trustee-in-Trust I proposed to the Company that instead of having an engraved bond he would take a lithograph bond on condition that the Sugar Co. would put automatic sprinklers in the factory as a protection against fire. The Company, according to our agreement, had to furnish steel engraved bonds, and the difference in price would go a long way towards furnishing automatic sprinklers. This was acceded to, and a resolution was passed instructing the Secretary to investigate the matter.

My son Frank was down, and as I had heard remarks made concerning his having broken friendship with Charles Crane I asked him, in the presence of Presidents Woodruff and Smith and Brother Gibbs, to explain his position. I said he was accused of taking up with what is called the Tribune ring and “throwing off” on Crane, and that the only trouble between him and Crane was that Crane would not work with the Tribune people. As these statements had been made in the office, I desired to give Frank a full opportunity to explain his position and what he had done. He did so in the most conclusive manner, and I think we were all well satisfied that he had acted honestly in what he had done. I said if he had thrown off on a friend it would be something that I should be shocked ashamed of; for it was not a trait, I thought, of our family to forget their friends or to be ungrateful to them.

Brother Winslow came down from Ogden. He did not come prepared to do anything about the land, but expressed the desire that I should come up and see his land. It was arranged that I should go on Friday.

4 September 1895 • Wednesday

Wednesday, Sept. 4, 1895. The First Presidency had an interview with my brother Angus upon the subject of changing the titles of the Presidents of the Mutual Improvement Associations to that of Superintendent, Sisters Taylor and Dougall having brought this to our attention yesterday. His object in making the change, he said, was to have uniformity. The General Presidency of the Young Men’s Mutual Improvement Associations were Presidents Wilford Woodruff, Joseph F. Smith and Moses Thatcher, and they were called Superintendents, and he thought there was an incongruity in calling those who acted under their direction Presidents. For this reason he had changed the title. It was decided that he had better not make that change, as they were known as Presidents and all their books were drawn up giving them this title, and it would be better to let that stand.

We had a meeting of Zion’s Savings Bank & Trust Co. at one.

The First Presidency had a call today from Colonel Trumbo.

5 September 1895 • Thursday

Thursday, Sept. 5, 1895. This morning President Woodruff and myself (President Smith joined us later) listened to a written report which my son Abraham had prepared of his visit to California. I listened to it with much interest, and I think that his trip has been very profitable in many directions. He certainly has done a great deal of work, and his report is very succinct and comprehensive.

At 11 o’clock we met in the Temple. Beside the First Presidency there were, President Snow, Franklin D. Richards, John Henry Smith, H. J. Grant and A. H. Cannon. We had a very interesting session, and Brother Grant was mouth in prayer.

6 September 1895 • Friday

Friday, Sept. 6, 1895 This morning I went up to Ogden, and accompanied by Brother Shurtliff I went up to Brother Winslow’s place. We went over his ground and over the land that the Pioneer Company own. He did not want to take all our land, but desired 40 acres only of it—that which was next to his own. He offered his 100 acres with the mortgage on it for this 40 acres and $1000, and told me his wife would not sign the deed for anything less. I suggested that we go and see her, which we did, and I explained the situation to her and said that I had offered to Brother Winslow to take the 100 acres with the mortgage of $500 on it, and give 40 acres of land and $500 to boot. This she was quite willing, she said, to take; so the bargain was concluded. Besides the 100 acres he is to give us a right of way for our pipe line across his land.

7 September 1895 • Saturday

Saturday, Sept. 7, 1895 At 9 o’clock this morning President Woodruff and myself proceeded to Farmington, at which place the Davis Stake Conference was held. We were accompanied by Brother Winter. The meeting was held in a bowery. President Woodruff called upon me to speak. I occupied about an hour. The conference was adjourned until 1 o’clock. In the meantime President Jos. F. Smith had arrived. We took dinner at Brother John W. Hess’. The afternoon was occupied by President Woodruff and President Smith. I made a few remarks at the close. We returned to the city on the 3:38 train.

8 September 1895 • Sunday

Sunday, Sept. 8, 1895 The Salt Lake Stake Conference met yesterday and again today. Its sessions today were held in the large Tabernacle, which has been greatly improved in appearance by the renovating it has undergone. The forenoon meeting was occupied by Brother Willard Done and my brother Angus. In the afternoon the sacrament was administered and the authorities of the Stake were presented, after which President Woodruff desired me to speak. I was very timid and felt to shrink very much, but in accordance with his request I arose, putting my trust in the Lord, I spoke about 65 mins. and enjoyed my own remarks very much. In the evening another meeting was held, and Bishop Preston occupied 10 mins., Brother Heber J. Grant about 15, and Abraham H. Cannon about 25. I also spoke for about 10 mins. Then the Conference adjourned.

9 September 1895 • Monday

Monday, Sept. 9, 1895 Mr. Theodore F. Meyer came in this afternoon from St. Louis.

At the office attending to business.

In the evening my wife Carlie and myself called upon Mr. & Mrs. Meyer at the hotel. They were very much pleased to see us. We spent nearly two hours there and it was arranged for my wife to call tomorrow and take Mrs. Meyer out riding.

A few evenings ago I had a meeting with my family. I had also invited my sons John Q. and Abraham and my daughter Mary Alice and her husband to be present, as I desired to get a united expression from my family concerning some of the children. My son William has spoken to me lately in relation to studying medicine. He has had a great desire at different times to be a physician. The idea has occurred to him again, and he seems to be quite impressed with it. He has a number of friends who are doctors, all of whom according to his statements, encourage him in the belief that he would make a good doctor. I have had some doubts about my sons succeeding in anything of this kind; but he seems now to have the spirit of it, and I am anxious to do all I can for him; for while he is a good moral boy and clean in all his habits, and is physically well formed and perhaps the handsomest boy in my family, still there seems to be intellectual defects. He has never been able to learn through his ears, having an excellent memory. He is also a poor penman, and I have felt that his education was very deficient for one of my sons, although he has had the same opportunities that his brothers of the same age have had. I would like him, whether he ever succeeds as a doctor or not, to get a better education than he has. In the insurance business he has done tolerably well, and it has occurred to me that even if he did not succeed in the profession of medicine and surgery he would still be able to fall back on his insurance business. I have therefore been disposed to think favorably of the proposal. Upon investigation also of the cases of my sons Sylvester and Willard, I find that if they continue at the University as they have thought of doing, it will require a longer time for them to graduate in the professions which they desire to master than if they were to go directly to the Massachusetts Institute on Technology along with my son Lewis. My son Joseph also has been working for the News during the vacation, and it is a question whether he should continue there or go back to the University. All these questions caused me to ask my family to come together that we might consider them deliberately, and that by getting the views of all concerned we could sustain whatever action we decided upon by our faith. I explained to the family what my views were in calling them together and the reasons I had for doing so. Of course, all this would take means which I cannot very well spare at the present time; but I do not know how I can spend means to better advantage than by giving them an education. I said that I had for years contemplated the idea of doing something in a way that if any of my children were deficient, either physically or intellectually, they could be helped. I thought it was my duty to do more than to bring children into the world, but to see that they were furnished with every advantage possible to enable them to make their own living and help sustain others. In the case of Lewis, who had been so severely injured when a child, I had always said I would give him an education, if it were possible, or make up for this physical injury. But I had also proposed to the other boys, Reed, Joseph, Sylvester and Willard, that as I had given each of my children a certain sum of money after they attained their majority and married, would they prefer me to do so with them or to spend an equal amount upon them in giving them an education? and they had told me they preferred the education. This being the case, I thought that I ought to come to some decision now respecting these two, because it is probable that if they stay here another year it will not help them. I thought the Institu[t]e of Technology the best school I could send them to, and one or two years’ time saved I thought of exceeding great value to them. My sons John Q., Abraham and Lewis all spoke, and their remarks were excellent. They thought we ought to have the boys go back, and all seemed to favor the idea of William making the attempt. There was great unanimity in the meeting, my wives and children all feeling alike, and I was greatly pleased at the union and love that were exhibited by all. It seems clear to me that this is the best thing I can do with the boys. I am very much in favor of William taking his wife back with him, as I think she can be of service to him. Her influence is very good and she is a girl of intelligence and education.

10 September 1895 • Tuesday

Tuesday, Sept. 10, 1895 The First Presidency had a meeting this morning with Brothers Clayton and Jack and my sons Abraham and Frank on railroad matters.

I attended a meeting of the Brigham Young Trust Company.

We also had a meeting of Cannon, Grant & Co.

It was my intention to have had Mr. & Mrs. Meyer go out to the Lake today; but Sister Clayton desired to have a large party and have music at the pavilion, so an arrangement was made for them to go out tomorrow evening at 7 o’clock.

11 September 1895 • Wednesday

Wednesday, Sept. 11, 1895 The First Presidency had an interview this morning with Brothers Orson Smith and John M. Cannon, who have just returned from Belmont, the County seat in Nye County, where they went to swear out warrants for the arrest of certain parties who have jumped the “Chispa” claim belonging to the Sterling Mining & Milling Co. This is a valuable property, and a man by the name of McArthur, who alleges that he has some lien on the property, employed a number of desperadoes to take possession of it in the night. The next morning Brothers Smith and Langford and my son Hugh and others were awakened by the firing of guns, and when they went up there they were confronted by armed men, who commanded them to stop or they would shoot them. Brother Smith left on the 30th, and word has been received that one of the desperadoes, named Foote, had threatened the lives of some men near there, and that he had been shot and had died on Sept. 1st., and that after he was killed the rest had left the property. Brother Smith gave us a graphic description of the way in which these outlaws had acted.

I had a call from Judge Shurtliff concerning going to the Irrigation Congress and business connected with it.

My wife Carlie and my daughter Mary Alice and Sister Clayton had gone up City Creek Canon, my wife having arranged for a picnic up there in honor of Mr. & Mrs. Meyer. As they could not find Mr. Meyer when they left, Mrs. Meyer desired me to get word to him, so that he might follow. He did not come into the office till after 2 o’clock, and I took him in my buggy to where they were. I broke the singletree of my buggy just as I reached the camp, through one of my animals trying to jump a muddy place. The party had a delightful time.

I had an appointment at 4 o’clock with Presidents Woodruff and Smith and others to attend a surprise party at the 9th Ward meeting house. Bishop S. A. Woolley is 70 years of age today and his family and friends desired to give him a party. Through my delay in the canon I did not get there at the time; but they were just going in to eat when I reached. After we had eaten, the First Presidency were requested to speak, which we did for a few minutes, and then started for the depot to go to Saltair. The train was to leave at 7, but was detained nearly three quarters of an hour for the purpose of allowing some of Mr. Meyer’s acquaintances to join the party. There were several hundred people invited, and the pavilion was lit up, making a very brilliant appearance. There was music, and considerable waltzing on the part of the young people. The visitors were astonished and delighted with what they saw. Mrs. Meyer especially was in high spirits and expressed the utmost delight. The party returned at 10:30. President Woodruff endured the fatigue very well, and all the strangers were surprised at his vigor.

12 September 1895 • Thursday

Thursday, Sept. 12, 1895 There was a meeting of the Deseret Telegraph Co. at the office this morning.

At 11 o’clock President Woodruff and myself (President [Smith] being absent attending the funeral of one of the Hawaiian saints) met with President Snow, Franklin D. Richards, Heber J. Grant and Abraham H. Cannon in the Temple. We attended to some business and offered prayer, President Snow being mouth.

The First Presidency had a meeting with Mr. Meyer, R. C. Lund, and Frank and Abraham H. Cannon, the object being to consider matters connected with the southern enterprise, with a view to being prepared for a visit from Senator Elkins and Mr. Kerens, which is expected will be the beginning of October.

I had invited Mr. & Mrs. Meyer to dine with my family today about 4 o’clock. All my wives and my children that were in town were present, excepting John Q. and his wife, who for some reason did not come. We had an excellent meal, and they enjoyed it exceedingly. It was something entirely new to them to see a family of the size of mine and to see them all sitting down to table at once. After dinner we spent the evening at my wife Caroline’s. The children favored us with guitar and mandolin music, and Rosannah gave a recitation, and Carol sung a song.

13 September 1895 • Friday

Friday, September 13, 1895 I took time this morning to arrange my affairs so that I could leave this afternoon for Albuquerque, where the Fourth National Irrigation Congress is to be held on Monday next. Governor Caleb W. West appointed me as delegate to this Congress, it being the general expression of all interested that I should attend. Before accepting, however, I told President Woodruff what the Governor wanted, and he said I ought to go, and to tell the Governor that I would go if he appointed me. The Governor had telephoned to learn my feelings in the matter.

I dictated letters, &c., to Brother Arthur Winter, who came down to my place for the purpose.

This evening I started, accompanied by my wife Caroline, for the Irrigation Congress at Albuquerque, on the Rio Grande Western R.R. I found Brother Shurtliff and daughter on the train, and Brother J. C. Child, of Weber County, who were on their way also to the Congress. Brothers Rulon S. Wells, H. G. Whitney, C. D. Pyper, J. D. Spencer and H. S. Ensign and their wives were also on the train, going out to Glenwood for recreation, being the guests of Brother and Sister N. W. Clayton, who were taking them. At my request, they sang a number of songs. They are all excellent singers, and it attracted a good deal of attention on the cars.

We reached Albuquerque on Sunday evening, the 15th. There was a large concourse of people gathered at the depot to meet us, and the committee which had been appointed for the purpose escorted us to carriages. We were taken to the Club, where I signed my name and that of my wife; and Mr. Moore, who had been postmaster in Salt Lake for eight years, and now residing in Albuquerque, took us in charge and carried us to the hotel. A room had been selected for my wife and myself—the best in the house, and the hotel keeper, Mr. Owen, would do anything in his power for us.

The Congress met on Monday (the 16th) and was called to order by Mr. Smythe, Chairman of the Executive Committee, and Colonel Carr, of Illinois, put in nomination Jesse Grant, the youngest son of the late President Grant, as temporary chairman, and this motion was seconded by Mr. Moses, of Kansas. He was voted for by acclamation, and the Chair appointed three gentlemen, of whom I was one, to escort him to the chair.

It is not necessary that I should go into all the details of the business that was done. I was kept very closely confined, because when the permanent organization was made, John E. Frost, of Kansas, was chosen as chairman, and I was chosen as vice president—an office that has not been in existence before; but they desired to put me in some position and created this office for me. A good deal of the time I was in the chair, as Mr. Frost had other duties, and he seemed to think I was up in parliamentary law, and the Congress seemed to be greatly pleased at my chairmanship.

The Congress held sessions three times a day, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday; and then seven of the Utah delegation accepted an invitation to go to Pecos Valley. The Pecos Valley Improvement & Irrigation Company had arranged for those of the Congress who desired, to go to that Valley and visit their works. They were particularly desirous that I should go; but when I found that it would be Monday night before we got back, if they carried out their programme, I sent Brother John Henry Smith, who was one of our delegates, to arrange with the committee, if it were possible, to come back on Sunday night, as I was anxious to get back, and I did not feel that I would have time to go and return to Albuquerque earlier than Monday night. Mr. Blodgett, the agent of the Company, and Colonel Max Frost were willing to do anything in their power. The latter gentleman was the chairman of the New Mexico committee. They proposed to put an engine and cars at my disposal, to take myself and those who would go with me to see the Valley, so as to save time, and get back by Sunday night. There were fourteen delegates from Utah, viz: C. L. Stevenson, Judge C. S. Kinney, John Henry Smith and myself and wife, from Salt Lake City; L. W. Shurtliff and Louie Shurtliff, from Ogden; J. C. Child, from Riverdale, Weber Co.; Edward Partridge and J. A. Loveless, from Provo; Andrew Madsen from Mt. Pleasant; Jas. M. Peterson, from Richfield; Nels Madsen, from Brigham; and C. R. Clark, from Morgan. Colonel Stevenson, the Secretary of the Commission, had telegraphed to the Governor, and he had sent an appointment for my wife. All were Mormons, excepting Col. Stevenson and Judge Kinney. Four of our delegation preferred going to Phoenix, Arizona, there being an excursion arranged for all who wanted to go there. Our trip to the Pecos Valley was a delightful one, the only drawback being the heat. It was excessively hot for the time of the year. We stopped at Las Cruces, and were carried in carriages around and ate a dinner provided for us. We viewed the vineyards and the orchards, and also visited the Agricultural College. At El Paso we were received by a delegation of citizens, headed by the Mayor. Carriages were furnished, and we had a very interesting time there, visiting all parts of the city, and crossed the Rio Del Norte into Mexico. Myself and wife had for our companion in the carriage, Francis Mallen, Mexican Consul at El Paso, and Manuel M. Banche, Custom House Collector at Juarez. We found Mr. Mallen a very fine gentleman, who proffered me, in case I ever had occasion to go to Mexico, to give me letters of introduction to prominent gentlemen, and also to President Diaz. When we reached Eddy in the Pecos Valley, we had a most excellent meal furnished us, and were taken round in carriages to see what had been done by this Improvement & Irrigation Company. Mr. Hamilton, the assistant manager, took myself and wife in his carriage and showed us all that was to be seen. I was greatly impressed with what I saw at this point. This valley possesses an excellent climate, the seasons being long; the soil is very rich and water is abundant. The reservoirs that they have built are simply magnificent.

We were carried from Eddy in a special train to Roswell, and there myself and Brothers John Henry Smith and L. W. Shurtliff, with the ladies, were carried around in carriages all over the improvements. We visited the old Chisholm ranch and the orchards and I never saw trees loaded heavier with fruit than they were in this old orchard; in fact, the whole region gives evidence of being wonderfully rich in producing all sorts of fruits, vegetables and grains. The Company have set at this point about 600 apple trees. They expect to ship their fruit to Europe. I learn that the terms on which they sell their land is $35 per acre for a 40 acre tract. This includes the water right. The Company keeps the ditches in order, clear of weeds, and the water is placed at the entire disposal of the owner of the land whenever they need it, and in any reasonable quantity. For keeping up the canals they charge one dollar and a half a year. The length of the season makes the trees appear to a great advantage for their age; trees three and four years old appear to be as large as those two years older in our climate. On returning, we passed through Eddy in the evening, with the full expectation of reaching Albuquerque Sunday night; but in the early morning we awoke and found that we were stopped at a station called Sierra Blanca, and learned that there had been a washout ahead of us that we could not pass, and which had to be repaired. We remained all day Sunday at this point. Mr. Frost was also along with his private car, and Colonel Carr and his wife, as well as Mrs. Frost and daughter; and Mr. Frost gave us a most excellent dinner about 4 o’clock in the afternoon. His cooks were very fine, judging by the repast that they prepared. All the people that we met in this excursion were exceedingly pleasant. They treated us with great kindness. There were a number of ladies that went with us to Eddy; among them Mrs. Thornton, the wife of the Governor. The Governor himself was also along. And they were all very agreeable, as also the gentlemen of the party. Colonel Carr is an intimate friend of Mr. Frost, and lives at Galesburg, Illinois. He was representative of our government in Denmark for four years under Mr. Harrison. His brother, General Carr, was with us also. He is a retired army officer, and was accompanied by his son and daughter-in-law. They are interested in land at Ramah, New Mexico, and they speak very highly of our people with whom they have business relations there.

We reached El Paso in the middle of the day, and stopped over several hours, and crossed again into Mexico. I made a purchase of a comb for each of my wives, made by the Mexicans in filigree work. Here we left Colonel Max Frost, whose kindness to us we ought to remember.

We reached Albuquerque Monday night, and proceeded on the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe R.R. At Santa Fe Brother John Henry Smith got off and proceeded to San Luis Valley, Colorado, to see a branch of his family there. Brother Childs and Brother Nels Madsen proceeded with us to Pueblo, and there they got on the train for Salt Lake.

I omitted to say at the proper time that among the excursions that we took was one to Santa Fe, where I met Mr. Catron, delegate to Congress from that Territory, whom I became acquainted with about twenty years ago. We went and examined a very large dam that was being constructed there for irrigation purposes.

Brother Shurtliff and daughter proceeded on to Denver; but my wife and myself got off at Colorado Springs, as we were desirous to visit Manitou, I having promised that whenever we passed through again I would try and stop and see the place. We went from Colorado Springs to Manitou by electric cars. We put up at the Cliff House. We got a carriage and went up Williams’ Canon and visited very interesting caves there; after which we went to the Garden of the Gods. Next morning early we left Manitou and were taken to Cheyenne Canon in a carriage. This canon has finer scenery than anything I ever remember witnessing.

We then took train at Colorado Springs for home.

26 September 1895 • Thursday

Thursday, Sept. 26, 1895 We found ourselves this morning with a broken engine in the midst of a desert, which caused a six hours detention. The weather was pleasant, however, and it made our stop more bearable. Instead of reaching Salt Lake City at 1:20 in the afternoon, it was about 7:30 in the evening. Brother Wilcken met us at the train with a carriage, and the boys brought a wagon for our trunk. I was much gratified to find all my family in good health. My daughter Amelia, however, has hurt herself in carrying her heavy boy and is threatened, I learn, with miscarriage. She is at her mother’s and they are nursing her carefully.

27 September 1895 • Friday

Friday, Sept. 27, 1895 I came to the office this morning and found that President Woodruff was absent, confined to his house with a severe cold. I attempted to look over my correspondence and other matters, but was so frequently interrupted that after the day was ended I felt as though I had accomplished but little[.]

28 September 1895 • Saturday

Saturday, Sept. 28, 1895 I called upon President Woodruff yesterday and found he was somewhat improved. I called again today and he was still better.

I gathered up my letters and attended to other business at the office, and in the afternoon returned home with Brother Arthur Winter, and we worked steadily at correspondence and an article for the Juvenile Instructor until late in the afternoon. I felt greatly relieved at getting through with this work. I get so much more done when off by myself as I have been this afternoon. At the office there are so many interruptions it seems impossible to get through with the correspondence, &c.

29 September 1895 • Sunday

Sunday, Sept. 29, 1895 I fitted up the victorine and had my son Joseph drive it, and took my wives Eliza, Martha and Caroline to West Jordan to hold meeting in the afternoon. Brother Wilcken drove the Surrey, in which my brother Angus and my son Abraham and myself rode with him. We drove to my farm at Westover, and got lunch; then proceeded to the meeting. The house was crowded, and Abraham spoke first in a very interesting manner, and I followed, occupying the remainder of the time. Sacrament was administered, which I enjoyed very much. After meeting we all proceeded to Brother Samuel Bateman’s and took dinner. After this I went with Angus and Abraham to Brother Dan Bateman’s to administer to his wife, and also to Brother James Turner’s to administer to him, he being very low. We returned to the meeting, which was held at 6 o’clock and had a delightful evening meeting. Brother Wilcken spoke for a few minutes, followed by my brother Angus (whom I never heard speak better) and Abraham, and then myself. I was greatly edified by the remarks of the brethren, and I think the people enjoyed the meeting exceedingly. We drove home by moonlight. The evening was quite chilly.

30 September 1895 • Monday

Monday, Sept. 30, 1895 I was greatly pleased this morning to meet my son Hugh and Brother Jerry Langford, who reached the city on Saturday night. Hugh looks exceedingly well. He has lost some flesh, but he appears better for it. I can see the Cannon look in him more than I ever did before. He resembles Abraham very much. They gave us a report of the condition of affairs at the mines. They brought $5000 from their last cleanup.

There was a meeting of Z.C.M.I. for the purpose of <re>incorporating. In the absence of President Woodruff, Brother Moses Thatcher, Vice President, presided.

We had a meeting with Brothers Clayton and Jack and W. W. Cluff on the coal business.

President Jos. F. Smith, my son Abraham and myself went down in company with Brother Langford and my son Hugh, to President Woodruff’s. We had an interview with him of over an hour’s length, and he was much interested in the report which the brethren made.

After my return, I attended a meeting of the Sunday School Union Board and we did some business.

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September 1895, The Journal of George Q. Cannon, accessed July 22, 2024