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November 1899


1 November 1899 • Wednesday

Wednesday, November 1, 1899

William has been very busy Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and this morning with Frank. Preston came up to see me to-day. He seemed very natural and cheerful.

2 November 1899 • Thursday

Thursday, November 2, 1899

Preston visited me again to-day, but did not look quite so well; he was pale and his face looked pinched. John Q. was here. My wife Sarah Jane came in the evening to visit me. This is the first time I have seen her since I came east. It has not been deemed prudent for her to call upon me. She starts home to-morrow over the Pennsylvania road, accompanied by John Q. and Joseph Ballantyne. She appears in very good health, and is quite reconciled to the proposed return of Preston to his field of labor in Germany.

3 November 1899 • Friday

Friday, November 3, 1899

My wife Sarah Jane, John Q. and Brother Ballantyne left for home to-day. This morning I had a very long private conversation with John Q.

4 November 1899 • Saturday

Saturday, November 4th, 1899

The nurse, Miss Macdiarmid, was dismissed this morning, my condition being such that Sister Cannon could do everything necessary in nursing me. We have been very fortunate in securing this nurse, for she is credited with being very superior in her profession. Dr. Coley said to me he was very glad he had been able to secure her. He called this morning and examined me, and spoke encouragingly of my condition. Of course, he does not give the Lord any credit for my recovery, but he said that I as a patient had done credit to them all. He said it was very remarkable and surprising that a man at my time of life should have double pneumonia and recover as quickly as I had done. He praised me as being one of the best of patients. I look back now and realize as I did not at the time, how very sick I was on Saturday, Sunday and Monday, the 21, 22 & 23 of October. On Monday afternoon and night especially, my condition was considered most serious; besides my son William there was Drs. Coley and James, and they thought my condition critical. On Tuesday, my family, having heard of my illness, spent the day in fasting and prayer. My son John Q. called the family together, and my brother Angus met with them. The general feeling, as reported to me by John Q., and testimony of the family was that their prayers would be heard and answered, and that I would recover. On that day a change for the better in my condition took place and I continued to mend from that time.

5 November 1899 • Sunday

Sunday, November 5, 1899

I arose and dressed to-day for the first time. Had a call from Sister Nettie Easton. Rode in a carriage with my wife and sons William and Preston for about three-quarters of an hour in the Park. I received a call from Elder Howard Garret, who brought me some flowers and administered to me, which my sons William and Lewis had previously done; in fact, they have administered to me a number of times. Mr. John M. Hoon also called. He is interested with my son Frank in the Liquid Air business.

6 November 1899 • Monday

Monday, November 6, 1899

Rode out in the Park and Riverside as yesterday for about an hour. In the afternoon I had quite a long and interesting conversation with my son William, in which I took the liberty of speaking very plainly to him and bringing to his attention several faults in his character, which I thought he should correct. Had another call from Mr. Hoon.

7 November 1899 • Tuesday

Tuesday, November 7, 1899

Another ride in the Park to-day. Mr. Winslow S. Pierce, of the U.P.R.R., called to-day, which I appreciated very much. My son William had seen him some days ago about transportation home, and he had kindly offered me the use of a private car. He called to-day and renewed the offer, and in reply to my inquiry said there would be no expense. I feel somewhat concerned about my son Preston’s condition. Since he came out of the hospital he has had a recurrence of the pains from which he suffered in Germany. If he is likely to be troubled in this way, I think he had better return home instead of going back to Germany with his brother Lewis as I had intended he should. I have desired my son William to consult freely and fully with Drs. Coley and Bull, who were the surgeons at whose hospital he was operated upon.

My journal since I have been here I have dictated to my son Lewis.

8 November 1899 • Wednesday

Wednesday, November 8, 1899

I feel that I am improving daily in strength. I received the following dispatch from my son John Q.: “Arrived yesterday. Family well. President Snow sends love and urges against premature attempt to travel. President Smith absent; birthday party unlikely.” The result of my son William’s consultation with the surgeons concerning Preston’s condition is that we think it safer for him to return home. Took a carriage ride in the Park to-day. Brother and Sister Easton took dinner with us this evening. We had a very interesting call from Prof. Charles H. Tripler and Mr. John H. Hoon. Prof. Tripler’s discovery and manufacture of Liquid Air was the theme of deep interest to all of us.

9 November 1899 • Thursday

Thursday, November 9, 1899

Lewis and myself rode in the Park to-day in a hansom. I had my son William call at the National Park Bank to arrange for a loan of $28,000 for six months. My note due on the 20th inst. for $60,000 I expect to take up by paying $32,000 and giving a new note for the balance. I expected to get the new loan at the same rate of interest I had been paying – 4 1/2% – but to my great surprise Mr. Delafield told William that money now was in such demand that they were getting 8% for it. He said he would do anything in his power for me, security or no security; they would lend me any amount on my bare note, and instead of charging me the rate of interest that others were paying he would let me have the amount at 5 1/2%. He pressed William to know what they could do for me in any way in my sickness, and was profuse in his expressions of the high regard in which they held me. I debated whether to take this loan at this rate of interest or not, but concluded it prudent to do so. Mr. Pierce, of the Union Pacific, sent H. J. Granby, the porter of the special car placed at my disposal, to see me to-day. I left the whole arrangements in his hands, and he thinks everything will be ready to go on Saturday. We had a call from Brother & Sister Easton and Hugh Dougall this evening. The latter has come here to study vocal music.

10 November 1899 • Friday

Friday, November 10, 1899

Took a ride in the Park with my wife. My son Lewis made arrangements to-day to sail from here to Hamburg to-morrow on the steamship “Patricia”.

11 November 1899 • Saturday

Saturday, November 11, 1899

We did not see William or Preston this morning, as Preston was sick and William went to Hoboken to see Lewis off on the steamer. I was glad to hear from William how fine and spacious a vessel the Patricia is, and how comfortably situated Lewis is on the ship, the only drawback being that he has no companion.

At 3:30 Granby came and got all our baggage and had it taken to the special car. We left in the carriage at about 5 o’clock. We found the car prepared for us and in beautiful condition. It is a very elegant one. There was one very broad bed in the stateroom and one a little smaller in the room adjoining. These made the quarters of my wife and myself very select. There were other comfortable beds to be made up for the boys. We left for the west on the Pennsylvania line about 6:20 p.m.

12 November 1899 • Sunday

Sunday, November 12, 1899

Granby furnished us with most excellent meals. We reached Chicago at 8:45 p.m. The car was transferred to the Chicago & Northwestern. We left for Council Bluffs at 10:30.

13 November 1899 • Monday

Monday, November 13, 1899

It was so cold this morning, the steam not being on, that it was thought best for me to lie in bed till the car became warm. I had my breakfast served to me there. I have driven ox teams across the plains, also mule teams, and have crossed in stage coach and in a Pullman palace car; but scarcely ever expected to lie in a comfortable bed and have my breakfast served to me while traveling at the rate of about 40 miles an hour.

15 November 1899 • Wednesday

Wednesday, November 15, 1899

We reached Salt Lake City this morning about 7 o’clock. Our train had been delayed, but upon arrival at Ogden they sent us through immediately. I was met at the depot by a number of my sons, and they had the close carriage of the Church for me to go home in, Brother McHenry driving.

I cannot omit the opportunity to pass without saying how deeply I feel obliged to the Union Pacific Company for their kindness in furnishing me a private car and stocking it as they have done, and furnishing the cook and porter. Granby, the man in charge, is a very excellent cook. I never ate ten meals in succession that came quite up to the ones he prepared. He had most excellent victuals and prepared them in the finest manner, and he gave me every attention he could. I wrote to Mr. Pierce and to President Burt, thanking them for the car and for the kindness which they had shown me.

I was glad to reach home and find my family in good health. They were exceeding glad to see me and welcome me back once more.

I felt as though I would like to attend a meeting of the Board of Directors of the Union Light & Power Co., but my son William insisted that I must not attempt such a thing, and my wife said she would lock the doors to prevent my going. I remained at home all day.

16 November 1899 • Thursday

Thursday, November 16, 1899

It being the meeting day of the First Presidency and Twelve in the temple, I could not resist the desire to meet with them, and telephoned to the city for a hack. I went up and met with the brethren, and enjoyed the meeting excellently. President Joseph F. Smith is absent in Canada. The brethren appeared very pleased indeed to see me and find me able to come out.

17–18 November 1899 • Friday to Saturday

Friday & Saturday, Nov.17 & 18, 1899.

I stayed home these days.

19 November 1899 • Sunday

Sunday, November 19,1899

I concluded I would try and meet with the saints in the tabernacle to-day, which I did and enjoyed the meeting very much. Brothers Brigham Young and J. E. Talmage spoke. I find, however, that I have to be careful, for I can easily overtax myself.

20 November 1899 • Monday

Monday, November 20, 1899

I came up to town, but the office was all torn up. They are renovating it, changing carpets, papering, etc. President Snow went to Box Elder Conference yesterday.

Yesterday afternoon my son William left on his mission to the Netherlands. He goes away feeling very well.

21 November 1899 • Tuesday

Tuesday, November 21, 1899

President Joseph F. Smith returned from Canada last evening. I was very pleased to hear the reports from him concerning the affairs there.

I was up at the office to-day. President Snow was back home. I got drawn into business and stayed too long, and returned home quite tired.

22 November 1899 • Wednesday

Wednesday, November 22, 1899

I was at the office again to-day, but did not stay so long.

23 November 1899 • Thursday

Thursday, November 23, 1899

I met in the temple to-day with the First Presidency and Brothers Brigham Young, John Henry Smith, Heber J. Grant, A. H. Lund and Rudger Clawson, of the Twelve Apostles. Brother Clawson was mouth in prayer.

24 November 1899 • Friday

Friday, November 24, 1899

I came up town and closed the settlement of my debt to the Church, being the amount I owed on account of Cannon, Grant & Co. I also took up a note at the bank for the amount which was coming to Brother F. M. Lyman. I settled a day or two ago the amount due to President Joseph F. Smith, and I wish to record here how kind he was in this matter. He had my note for $2344 and interest, which amounted to about $2500. I asked him if I could make settlement with him by letting him have $1000 in cash and the remainder in Bullion-Beck stock at $3.80 a share, that being the present market price. He said he would settle for $1000 in cash and $1000 in Bullion-Beck stock. I told him I would rather pay him the full amount, but he insisted on only taking that; and when I remarked that I was deeply obliged to him he replied that I was not; that I had done him far more favors than that amount – favors that I had shown him from his boyhood up. I appreciated the good feeling he manifested toward me. He has a little idea of how cramped for means I have been of late. I have had to borrow from the bank to settle with the Trustee-in-Trust, and also the amount due to Brother Lyman, as well as the $1000 I paid to Brother Smith. I am extremely exercised about my debts, and am trying in every way possible to lessen them. In making the settlement with the Trustee-in-Trust I paid $14242.40 in Bullion-Beck stock at $3.80 a share. Whether the stock is good property may be questioned by some, but the Bullion-Beck has been a remarkable mine. It is what is called a “pocket mine”. A short time ago a dollar dividend was declared upon every share. The next month a fifty cents dividend was declared. I then ran for 12 or 13 months without a dividend. Since then it has been paying ten cents a share per month. I have seen the time when President Taylor and myself would have sold all our interests in the property for $2 a share, but since then I have seen $10 a share refused for it. I expect the mine does not look so promising at present; but Mr. Cunningham, who is the principal owner, intends to devote his own time to the property, and no doubt under his management it will increase in value, if there is anything in the ground. The Company owns considerable ground that has not yet been explored.

25 November 1899 • Saturday

Saturday, November 25, 1899

I spent the forepart of the day at the office.

26 November 1899 • Sunday

Sunday, November 26, 1899

Attended Tabernacle meeting at 2 o’clock. Elder Frank Chamberlain, just returned from a mission to the Eastern States, made a brief report of his labors, and he was followed by Brother Joseph W. McMurrin, who delivered a most excellent discourse on the principles of the Gospel.

27 November 1899 • Monday

Monday, November 27, 1899

I was at the office this morning, and in the afternoon went to the theatre, in company with President Smith, the First Presidency having been invited to attend a performance of “Madeleine” by our local opera company, in honor of the old folks. The house was very full. President Snow invited us into his box, where we sat with himself and wife. I enjoyed the performance very much. Brother Heber Goddard has a magnificent voice: it sounded almost like an organ. The singing generally was very creditable indeed.

After returning from the theatre we met with Judge Bartch and Senator Shoup. Senator Shoup expressed himself to the effect that he would do everything he could for us, especially in view of the fact that we had only one Senator from Utah and he was not in accord with the administration.

28 November 1899 • Tuesday

Tuesday, November 28, 1899

At the office.

29 November 1899 • Wednesday

Wednesday, November 29, 1899

Attended meeting of the executive committee of the Union Light & Power Co.

30 November 1899 • Thursday

Thursday, November 30, 1899

Thanksgiving Day.

Yesterday I received a call from Gen. Grenville M. Dodge. I was out at the time. This morning I had my son drive me to the Knutsford hotel for the purpose of paying my respects to General Dodge, who is an old acquaintance of mine and an excellent friend of the Latter-day Saints. I reached the Knutsford as he was about [to] enter a carriage to be driven to the railway station. He expressed great pleasure at seeing me, and we had a few minutes’ conversation.

From the Knutsford I drove to Bishop Clawson’s, where my mother-in-law, Sister Emily P. Young, is lying quite sick. I administered to her. She seemed to appreciate very much my visit and administration.

I ate Thanksgiving dinner with my daughter Emily. My daughter Mary Alice and her husband were also there with their children.

I had been depending on my son Brigham bringing turkeys from Deseret, but yesterday, hearing they had not arrived, I asked Brother McKenzie if he would be so kind as to get me 21 turkeys at the tithing office, as I understood they had quite a supply there. He did so, and it was very fortunate, because Brigham failed entirely in getting turkeys. I distributed these 21 turkeys among my family, and also sent one to Sister Slack, a widow that formerly lived with President Young.