Eliza Roxie Metcalf (History)
Eliza was born the 17th of August, 1850, in Hull, Yorkshire, England, to John E. and Mary Waslin Metcalf. The family came to America in 1853 and crossed the plains under the leadership of Claudian Spencer's Co.
When the campfires were lighted at night within the circle of wagons about them for protection, there was singing and dancing, music, discourses and etc.
These nightly entertainments were sweet and refreshing to the tired body and there was rejoicing when the old wagons lumbered down the deep rocky canyon into the broad open valley and stopped in Salt Lake City.
The promise lay hidden in the fertile soil and bounding mountain streams, and these sturdy resourceful men and women gathered in from the four corners of the earth were to bring that promise forth into growing fields and orchards and turn the wilderness into a blooming garden by hard labor, privation and sacrifice.
They settled in Salt Lake City where they resided until 1857 when they moved to Springville.
About 1865, the father was called to settle Fayette and build a gristmill in this town. The father was the presiding elder there and one of the leaders in this part of the country in the early days. He and Bishop Kearns built the first sawmill in Gunnison, which was completed about 1868.
Eliza married John Bartholomew, October 11, 1868, in the endowment house in Salt Lake City, Utah. They both lived at home while they built them a two-roomed log house in which they lived very happy. Three children were born to them while they lived in this log house. They had built a new two-story rock house on the same lot and moved into it just before their fourth child was born.
When they went to the endowment house to be married, sister Eliza R. Snow had charge of the women that day and asked Eliza R. Metcalf to come up and assist her. When she got up to Sister Snow, she asked her name. She told her it was Eliza R. Metcalf. Then Sister Snow asked her what the R. in her name stood for. She told her she did not know, that she was named after Eliza R. Snow and did not know what the R. stood for. Sister Snow said "How strange I should call on my name sake to assist me with this important work today." Then told her her name was Eliza Roxie. Sister Snow and Sister Bartholomew were very close friends from that day on and Sister Snow visited many times in the Bartholomew home, in fact every time she was in that vicinity.
At one of these visits Eliza was in bed with a baby boy just ten days old. Sister Snow asked if she might bless and name him, which she did, naming him Joseph Smith Bartholomew. Then his father John gave him a father's blessing.
The founders of this new home were well suited to each other. He was tall and slender with dark hair and eyes. A man of excellent qualities. Honest and given to hard work and though rather slow to make decisions always arrived at his objective in good order. She had a keen mind; her plans were always well laid and executed. Her ambition and energy drove her on in spite of many drawbacks that would have disappointed many women less determined. Perhaps her one outstanding trait was her fine management of financial matters and her skill in handling difficult situations as they arose in daily life.
They both knew the struggle of pioneer life was their heritage; together they went forth hand in hand to conquer.
She learned to wash wool, to card and spin, weave and knit, make soap, cure meat, make butter, and hundreds of other things that frontier life requires. She was deeply religious and very good at caring for the sick, very kind and thoughtful of those in need, and took baskets of food to families in need.
She was president of the Relief Society for many years and also worked in the Mutual. She always found time to take part in the activities of the church. Her ability to bring the desired results on any problem that might arise won for her a high place in the hearts of all her associates.
Her husband was presiding elder and Bishop for many years. She was a real helpmate to him in his work as Bishop. Many times he was away from home when tithing was brought in. And as tithing was paid in produce, she would go to the tithing office, which was two blocks away, and receive whatever was brought in, hay, grain, or other produce. She also entertained many of the general authorities in her home, both men and women.
After her husband's death she sold her big house and moved to a smaller home in Gunnison. For some years she was an ordinance worker in the Manti Temple.
She passed away at Gunnison the 11th of April, 1924. She was buried in
the Fayette Cemetery.
How can I best describe her-this bundle of organized energy? Except for a short nap, she seemed to be working from daylight to dark and then sometimes beyond. Even while seated, her knitting needles clicked. Or she might be winding her yarn into a ball. For this, one of us would be invited to hold the skein around our two spread hands, then dip and release a length or more as she rapidly wound the threads. We often helped to tear, cut, or sew the strips of clothing-discards that would be woven later into the scatter or braided throw-rugs.
I was aware that Grandmother smiled a lot. She had a round little face, more interesting than pretty. Her eyes sparkled with a frequent hint of fun and sometimes even mischief. Eliza wore her graying hair-with the slightest hint of a natural wave-then drawn loosely back in to a bun behind the head. Her body was pleasingly plump but solid-it was called upon to serve in many ways. She was not a tall woman. I really never thought to guess her height. Grandmother never appeared pale to me. There was a soft and rosy glow to her skin which was clear, devoid of blemish.
Grandmother B. boasted a pie cupboard. It stood against the far wall of the tiny room that opened off from the kitchen. The cupboard was constructed of wood. Its doors had inserts of tin rectangles perforated in a design. These holes gave ventilation to the contents of the narrow-spaced shelves within. The doors swung out and were fastened with a latch.
Oh the tantalizing smells that drifted from a well-stocked supply of pies made ready for our annual visits! Kinds I remember best were from a list of gooseberry, black or yellow currant, apple, pumpkin, and mincemeat-on occasion, even Squawberry: a carry-over from Indian use. On a daily basis, these narrow shelves held the shallow pans of milk, set aside for the cream to rise and be skimmed off for butter making or to turn clabber (sour) for cottage cheese.
The steps to the lower cellar-storage room opened up from the aforementioned small floor space boasting the pies. Sometimes I was sent into the cellar to save others the steps, but I loved to descend to its depths by myself, to revel in its pungent odors, to feast my eyes and to finger-sample a dainty or two. On either side of the landing stood a few large, brown crocks with heavy lids. Lift one of those lids and there would be Potawatomi Plum preserves-thick and candy-like and my favorite, or peach preserves or apple butter. Then there were pickles: mustard or chunky sweet ones. Home-cured sides of bacon, smoky pork shoulders and hams hung in rows from the rafters. Thin loops of dried squash, threaded on thick twine, were suspended from the beams. Bunches of dried onions hung there too. Toward the far end, against a wall, there was a space boarded off to form a root-cellar where carrots, parsnips and cabbages were buried in sand. Potatoes were somewhere there. Were they in a separate pit, bins or what? I'm not sure. Oh yes, shelves with some old-fashioned Mason jar bottles stood colorful with fruit and chili sauce. I mustn't forget the unbleached flour sacks that bulged with dried corn, apples, and small plums. The sacks were knotted at the top and hung from their pegs driven into the uprights. There was an earthen floor.
Eliza, with the help of whichever daughters were home, prepared a hot, cooked breakfast of substance for her men. (The out-of-door work was heavy and it started early.) One could expect generous slices of ham or bacon with potatoes and milk gravy. Often to these would be added a cooked Germade cereal with whole cream. On a regular basis batches of bread were baked three or four times a week. The dough was always mixed the night before, so, it was easy to pinch off balls from the batch and drop them into a large dripping pan for baking (the oven in the wood-burning stove was already hot). Presto! The bonus of hot rolls with the feast!
During our summer visits-around the late part of June and the fore part of July-Uncle Henry, (the youngest son), tried to make time to bring in a few rabbits. These were either Jack or Cottontail. The latter were our favorites as their meat was more tender and tasty. Whenever these were available, we could expect fried rabbit for breakfast. The pieces were rolled in flour and slowly browned. Delicious!
Speaking of homemade bread, I'm reminded of the yeast. Neither cakes nor dry yeast, as we know them were available. The "start" had to be tended or it either petered out or spoiled. Grandmother often kept a couple of jars going and the temperature was watched. It must neither overheat nor chill. After enough of the liquid yeast was poured off for a batch of bread, the bottle-level was brought up the next morning with an addition of warm potato water and a spoonful of sugar. I recall seeing more than one neighbor woman coming to the kitchen door with her empty bottle, asking for a start of Eliza's yeast. (She had neglected hers.)
Most of us today, who drive to a market and pick up a carton of milk or a pound of butter, have little idea of the work that went into the production of these items in a pioneer setting. Discounting the out-of-door business in the raising, care and feeding of the stock, I will simply start with the subject of milk.
The men of the Bartholomew household did the milking. The pails of the foaming liquid were brought in at evening and early morning. The milk was strained through clean cheesecloth, then poured into round tin pans to settle. As the cream rose to the top, it was skimmed off and put aside to be made into butter. The skimmed milk was used to give to young calves or lambs and much of it was mixed with shorts or bran to fill out the porkers.
Grandmother had an upright wooden churn. It rested on the floor. A long handle, similar to that on a broom, was attached to a round inner paddle. A hole was bored into the lid of the churn, which permitted the handle to be pulled up and down with its paddle on the bottom end. As this splashed the cream around within the churn the butterfat separated from the milk and left a delectable product- buttermilk!
The mass of butterfat was scooped out of the churn and went into a large wooden bowl. With a broad paddle, also of wood, the glob was worked over and over to drain out any excess air pockets or liquid. It was then salted to taste and was molded into round mounds for home-use. However, if for sale or for the Lord's tithe, the butter received another treatment. A rectangular-shaped, wooden box had been devised which, when filled, produced an even pound. A piece of wood fit in the bottom of the mold to which a short handle was attached. This could be moved up and down through a fitted hole in the box, thus enabling one to press the pound out in perfect form. (These wooden items were washed out in suds, rinsed with clear hot water, then rubbed with a coating of salt and again rinsed out in cold water. The treatment prevented any sticking of the fat.)
Grandfather and his sons had built an extra structure a short distance from the rock home in which they lived. It was divided by a wall-one side was used for the storage of grains. (There were some tin-lined bins in this half.) The other room was given over, in the main, for the women to use. (Some tools were also stored here.) A tall weaving-loom stood in one end with a high wooden bench before it for the use of the weaver. (It was fascinating to me to watch our Aunt Rose as she threaded and fed and pressed home the steps of the weaving process. She seemed to have been the one most often chosen to take care of this facet of work. Aunt Rose, next to the youngest daughter, was an artistic, gifted girl, who was adept and creative in all kinds of handwork.)
The aforementioned room also boasted a spinning wheel: essentials for making soap and candles, and the tubs, scrubbing boards, boilers and smooth sticks used in washing the clothes. There were many sacks of rags, torn into strips and sewn together, all ready and waiting to weave into carpet lengths. A variety of throw-rugs or the lovely braided rugs were sometimes made from these rags. The aim was to use every available scrap of material. This area also became something of a catchall as more tools and other things were dragged in.
At the times of our summer visits it was always an interesting place for me to browse in, albeit a bit of a clutter! By regularly offering to straighten and scrub the place, I won my Grandmother's approval. (I hope the household was able to find everything after we left. I never heard.) However, my efforts seemed to delight this special person in my young life-my Grandmother Bartholomew. Her eyes would sparkle and snap as she expressed her appreciation upon my willing ears.
What a contrast in washday methods between then and today! I gather a batch of white clothes; drop them into the well of my stream-lined washer; add a liquid soap and water softener; set the water-level and washing-time by turning a pair of dials; pull out another one -and the cycle begins. By the flow of an electric current the clothes are soaked, sudsed, rinsed and wrung, all ready to be lifted out and tossed into a dryer. As the pieces come from the latter, it is rare that an article even needs the touch of an electric iron.
Contrast the above with rising early, making an open fire in the yard, carrying a black-bottomed tub to place over the same, then filling it with water to heat, shaving a piece of homemade soap into the tub, and stirring the batch of white clothes around in the suds with a long smooth stick until the mass boiled to a lighter hue. (The pieces would first have been scrubbed on a washboard.) Of course, smoke would usually follow the woman as she moved around the fire to poke and stir the bubbling brew. There were no rubber gloves in that day and the soap contained lye, which affected the skin as well as the clothes. They had lotion. The Bartholomew women used a recipe of glycerin and witch hazel with a dash of rose water when available.
I have described a summer setting but I shudder to think of the chilling inconveniences of trying to hang wet clothes on a line with a south wind blowing or in bitter cold temperatures and to feel the pieces freeze stiff in one's hands before the ends could be clipped to the lines. I have experienced some of the latter early in my life. There was a bonus, however, the clothes dried out in the open had a heavenly smell! No perfumed fabric softener could even touch it.
Grandmother Bartholomew was born 17 August, 1850, in Hull, Yorkshire, England, of convert parents: John Edward Metcalf and Mary Waslin. Without researching the family's long trek to Utah, I will note that it settled in Springville. Joseph Bartholomew, with his wife, Polly Benson and their children, lived in the same area. One of the latter's sons, John, the third of ten and the eldest living, was attracted to the young Eliza Metcalf. The attraction culminated in marriage between the two on the date of 11 October, 1868. The union was solemnized in the Endowment House at Salt Lake. (Though the temple was under construction at the time, it was not finished and dedicated until 1892-twenty-four years later.) The bride had turned eighteen in August of that year and the groom was twenty-three years of age. They made a striking couple.
An interesting experience has come down to me. The renowned writer and poetess, Eliza Roxie Snow, was officiating for the women the day our young bride went for her endowments and marriage. No sooner had Sister Snow noted the unusual name of another Eliza Roxie on the record sheet, than she became immediately interested. Locating our grandmother-to-be, she took her into her arms and exclaimed, "You must have been named for me!" And it was so. Thereupon was formed a friendship that was to last until Sister Snow's passing.
It may not be widely know, but Eliza R. Snow was one of the Prophet Joseph's plural wives, and she loved and admired him totally. Following the martyrdom, the bereft Eliza R. was devastated with grief, and took to her bed, where she refused to eat, turned her face to the wall and prayed to be taken also. The situation was brought to the attention of one of the Brethren-likely Brigham Young, who proceeded to do something about it. Calling at her home, her reprimanded her sternly, and demanded that she rise from her pillow. She had work to do, much of it. Her life's mission was not over. She had to get on with her life! To the grief-stricken woman's credit, she complied. Eliza Roxie Snow's long record of inspired and dedicated service to her Church bespeaks her valiancy.
It has been told within the family, that on one of Sister Snow's visits to Fayette, Grandmother had just given birth to a son, her sixth child. There was some discussion as to an appropriate name. The guest queried, "What about Joseph Smith?" The suggestion was accepted and our uncle became Joseph Smith Bartholomew. We knew him, however, as Uncle Joe or Jody. Only years later did I learn of his full name and the circumstance surrounding his christening.
The two families of Joseph Bartholomew and John Edward Metcalf, with others, were called by President Young, to settle in the County of Sanpete. John Edward was to set up a gristmill at Warm Springs and Joseph would attempt to farm. The young couple of John and Eliza were part of the move, and they would go through much hardship and struggle before they could know the security of a tight-built home with additions of well-stocked barns and tended fields.
The little township of Fayette was gradually laid out. (It was named for Fayette, in Seneca County, New York.) John was given a good-sized piece of ground just north of his father Joseph's plot. John first built a log cabin on the southeast corner of his property Early on, John was set apart as Branch President of the little flock. As Fayette became a ward, he was made bishop. He held this office until the time of his death on September the twenty-third, 1914. He was sixty-nine years of age at his passing.
During most, if not all of her husband's tenure as bishop, Eliza acted as Relief Society President of Fayette Ward.
Shall we peek into some areas of the Bartholomew home? The living room was good-sized; long rather than square. It formed the southwest section of the ground floor of the dwelling. A wall-to-wall carpet of woven rag-strips, hand-sewn together, was stretched and tacked down over a padding of fresh straw. A number of hand-made throw-rugs were placed at strategic places over the carpet. A fireplace centered the west wall. There was a large dining table that stood in the middle of the room. It could be extended with a number of leaves to accommodate additional guests or family. I was impressed with the graceful lines of a long, black, horsehair sofa. (It was just right and very handy for naps or a convalescent child.) A foot-treadle-sewing machine stood in the room. Grandfather's tall, handsome secretary-desk rested against a portion of the east wall. A middle-section of its front could be let down to form a working shelf. The back of this inner area was divided off into little drawers and slots for letters and papers. The aforementioned lid could be closed back up and locked when not in use. The lower drawers plus a cupboard-section held Grandfather's legers; his receipt and account books necessary for his Church needs and his business transactions. There were assorted chairs in the room. Of these my memory is blurred.
The parlor--to my young eyes, this was an enchanting place. The room was square. It had an outside door, which opened onto a roofed-in porch that ran the whole of the home's east side. Windows, one on either side of the door, were hung with lovely, lace curtains. (Behind the curtains, dark green blinds were drawn down to keep the room in shadow and thus protect the treasured pieces within from sun fading. Naturally, these shades were raised for the visits of special guests or whenever one of the grandchildren was permitted to enter and to feast his or her eyes.) The floor was covered with a machine-woven carpet boasting swirls of soft-red roses against a cream-colored field. A fireplace was cut into the north wall. Two beautiful china dogs-products from England-rested on the mantelshelf. A padded sofa with arms, plus three or four like chairs were covered with heavy, upholsterer's satin, sprinkled with the faintest tracery of pattern in a lighter hue. The colors of these pieces were in gold, rose, and a soft medium blue. A small, round table centered the room. It was covered with a floor-length-skirted cloth of some heavy material. On it lay a good-looking family album with an ingenious music-box inserted into one side of the cover. As a person opened the book (provided the key had been wound) a tune tinkled prettily. (Fascinating to me!) It seems there must have been another small table near a window, for I vaguely remember a handsome coal-oil lamp. It's china bowl rested on a raised, metal stand. There was also a china shade. Both of these were decorated in a lovely design. I was later made aware of an upright piano in this room. At fourteen years of age, Uncle Henry would urge me to play for him. He was fond of music. I don't think the instrument was there earlier.
The Master bedroom. It too, faced front but occupied the southeast corner. Lace curtains also hung at the windows of this room. I don't recall the carpet, but there stood a beautiful double bed with wooden head and footboards, that impressed me. An interesting patchwork quilt, fashioned from varicolored pieces of velvet and silk scraps, had been featherstitched to a background cloth. This stunning quilt served as the bedspread. There was a marble-topped dresser of wood-was it walnut? On this rested a fair-sized heart-shaped pincushion, beaded solid over the entire upper surface, in a design of gold and red. Stuck into this, was Grandmother's treasured mother-of-pearl pin, fashioned in the shape of a lady's slipper. It seems as though there was another pin of which she was also fond. If I remember right, it was round, studded with tiny seed pearls and a few chips of less-costly stones. My Mother has told me that Grandmother Bartholomew definitely guarded her few personal treasures-telling her offspring, in no uncertain terms, that her belonging were few but the were hers. And, it would be "hands off" to any and all. Otherwise consequences would be dire.
A narrow stairwell had been inserted between the parlor and our grandparent's bedroom. The steps were overlaid with a strip of the woven-rag carpet like that mentioned earlier. These led to two upstairs bedrooms. I recall the north one best as it seemed to be the one to which my family was assigned. Our parents would occupy the double bed. We, the children, slept in makeshift bedding on the floor. I seem to remember a hand-fashioned, wooden cradle for infants. (Perhaps this was moved from room to room as needed.) There was a highboy against one wall-it being "a tall chest of drawers, usually in two sections, the lower, a table-like structure." There were a few chairs, I'm sure. Pictures of Queen Victoria, and her son, Edward VII, Prince of Wales, hung with those of some of the Church leaders on the papered walls. Though a few candles, placed in their holders were seen here and there, the lighting of that time was furnished by the use of coal-oil lamps. Most of these were of simple design with glass bowls, some of them resting on an elongated glass base with a tall glass chimney. A daily chore was to trim the wicks, refill the depleted supply of coal oil, then wash and polish the glass chimneys. Naturally, the cleaner the chimney, the brighter the light. Minus our present-day flash lights; the men used coal-oil lamps for the barn and out-of-door jobs.
Forty years had elapsed from the time of Eliza and John's marriage in 1868 to 1908, when as a child, I visited and admired some of the lovely pieces in our grandparent's home. I'm certain the items were saved for and acquired gradually, and then, not until the later years of that period.
Eliza Roxie Metcalf had taste. She came from a home where nice things were known. Following long years of struggle, her father, John Edward, became well established with a substantial home that in time was furnished well. Mother has told me something of her maternal grandmother, Mary Waslin Metcalf. She was a small, dainty, well-dressed English lady. In later years, Mary Waslin bought her pretty bonnets, her silk scarves and laces, her kid gloves, etc., on their trips to Salt Lake.
This Grandmother made a suggestion to her daughter Eliza Roxie, on my Mother's eighth birthday. The suggestion was adopted to Mother's utter despair! She, Sarah Jane, was to wash the dishes as her new assignment. What a drudge in that day! Water had more often to be heated; the fire built up and, without detergent, the water soon became greasy. There was a reservoir for hot water on the stove, but this wasn't always full and could soon be depleted. It took a number of pans of fresh water to complete a large batch of dishes. The blades of the table knives and the tines of the forks had to be scoured daily as the metal tarnished from contact with food. The scouring powder did not come in a can. It was obtained by shaving off sediment from a sandy brick-a job in itself. Let us hope that both the mother and an occasional offer from an older sister helped little Sarah Jane through her ordeal. I think it was so.
Our family was living in Salt Lake at the time. Father was still principal of the L.D.S. High School. As I approached my eighth birthday, I was informed, by my parents, that Grandmother Bartholomew, hoped that I might be baptized in the Manti Temple. And my baptism did take place within that edifice on the date of 30 June, 1908. However, upon now reviewing the records. I also note that the wedding of our special Aunt Mary, the Bartholomew's fourth daughter, took place on the 20th of that same month. Since our grandparents gave each daughter a home-reception following the Temple wedding, and since my family would certainly have been among the helpers at that event, we would have been there. It was likely for a few days in advance as I recall some of the bustle in preparation for the wedding reception. The bride's dress was made at home. There were exciting fittings for this. A large cake was made-from a fruitcake recipe-and baked in advance. It was cut into small slices and wrapped in white paper. The little packages were to be given to the guests before leaving. A sit-down meal was planned. It seemed that pies by the dozens were baked and set aside. Chickens and other meats were roasted ahead. The rest of the bounty becomes a blur. I only remember that it was good.
I helped Aunt Rose, the younger sister, cut many long sprays of yellow roses that bordered the north fence. These we placed in tubs of deep cold water, which we later carried into the house, where Aunt Rose arranged the roses in the rooms and on the tables for the coming event. The home looked lovely as the wedding party returned from the Temple at Manti.
The adults were seated first. My cousins and I were sent to play outside until called for a second-table serving. The waiting was anxious and we all wondered, "Would there by anything left for us?" There was.
No doubt my family left for home right after the wedding and I remained with the Grandparents.
Concerning my baptism, on the 30th of the month; I remember the long, jogging ride with my grandparents-in a white-top -- pulled by a trotting team. It was a distance of twenty miles between Fayette and Manti. I knew something special was in store for me. Though the physical details of the baptism are rather vague in my mind, the feeling of uplift was strong within me. In retrospect, the event has remained as one of the spiritual highlights of my life. It was a fond and unforgettable experience. I've felt grateful to those who brought it about. I was likely sent home by train. The Denver and Rio Grand Railways ran a line between Salt Lake, Gunnison and some points farther south.
Grandmother Bartholomew bore eleven children, nine of whom reached adulthood, so her family was large. The jobs were multitudinous and each child was assigned to carry part of the load. Responsibility was given early. Serious illness was the only recourse for exempting anyone from the given task. Mother told me how she and her older sisters had to always take their knitting along when baby-sitting the toddlers. There was the constant demand for the pairs of stockings or socks.) Oh yes, the knitting yarn was black, except for an unbleached variety used for the stockings of the very young. The girls grew very tired of the black hose and the woolen yarn pricked their tender skin.
Shoes were eventually ordered through the mail catalogues. The sizes were approximated and the feet were forced to fit the shoes rather than the reverse, as we know it today. Small wonder that our mother's slender, patrician feet were forced out-of-joint through the early period of her life.
Illness could strike at any time. There were two choices for relief: home remedies or a blessing from on High, through the administration of the Priesthood. There were no available doctors. It was years before a brave medic moved into Gunnison, some five miles away. Nor was there either drug store or pharmacy. Grandmother Bartholomew inherited a stock of remedies and evolved a few of her own through the method of trial and error! There were enemas, Epsom salts and castor oil for cleansing the bowels; mustard plaster-a mixture of lard and powdered mustard-in varying degrees of potency for chest colds or congestion of the lungs; teas simmered from dried leaves of prairie sage or those of other plants or shrubs in the area for cleansing of the blood or toning the anemic. Some methods and cures were adopted form the nearby Indians. (Grandfather often had contact with these.) As both father of the ward and of his family, Bishop John was there within call to serve his own. Other humble, faithful brethren could assist at any time.
The account of Grandmother's healing has been told me. Sometime after the birth of one of her children, a lump started to grow on one side of her neck. As it increased in size, the pain mounted, until she was forced to pace the floor for relief. The home remedies had proven totally ineffectual. Finally, she appealed to her husband and a neighbor who seemed to have a special gift for healing the sick. The two men gave her the blessing in the evening as the pain had reached an unbearable pitch. Through the words spoken, the malady was commanded to leave and Eliza was promised a return to her strength. Immediately following the pronouncement, Grandmother felt a lessening of the pain and calmness came over her. She retired to bed and slept! (There had been a succession of nights where sleep had been impossible.) Upon rising the next morning, Eliza realized that the pain was gone and, feeling her neck, she knew that the swelling had receded to almost normal! A miracle!
Occasionally the Grandparents Bartholomew visited us in Salt Lake. They came by train. I recall one unique experience as they arrived. One of the suitcases of that day was in the shape of an oblong box with the upper half fitting snuggly over the lower-something like our orange crates. They were made of some stout material then pasted over with a gray-blue canvas fabric. The whole was secured with two or more thin leather straps, encircling the object and fastened, as a belt would be.
True to Grandmother's generous heart, she had overloaded one of these with a number of plump, dressed chickens, some pounds of fresh butter, and other items of great worth to us-the city dwellers. On the approach to the station entrance, as the two came toward us, the straps snapped on the overloaded case and the prized contents scattered over the platform--all this, to the utter embarrassment of our guests and the awe-struck consternation of the onlookers. To be sure, we scrambled fast to retrieve the precious gifts . . . Oh, to be able to find a chicken, in this day, with the wholesome, fresh rich flavor of one of those!
The period of my most vivid recall was between the ages of four and fourteen years of age. It was through this decade that our visits were the most regular, taking place in either early summer or at Christmas time. Father left the school system in 1919 and began a rather erratic plan of travel. We, the children, grew older and our lives became complex and crowded. Visiting times were rare. Sad, but true.
Most of my foregoing descriptions are of the early-the semi-pioneer period. As the years passed, conveniences were added to the Fayette home-for example: the floor churn was discarded for a table model with a crank and the cream extracted to flow into its own container. In turn these cans of cream were picked up and the butter was made elsewhere. A wall-type phone was installed; an early-type washing machine-hand turned-- replaced the ancient methods; even electric lighting replaced the coal-oil lamps with their detailed upkeep. Inventions and progress were afoot in the land.
Grandfather John died 23 September, 1914. Death came suddenly. He was stricken with a heart attack and was gone within a few hours of time. We had just moved to Rexburg. Father had barely started his tenure at Ricks Academy and the older children were tied at school. Mother likely traveled alone if any attended the funeral held two days later, 25 September, 1914.
I do not know when Eliza decided to devote part of the year as an ordinance worker at the Manti Temple nor for how long she did this. I do know that in late winter-- at age seventeen---I was sent from Rexberg to visit her for a short time. I had grown thin, and had little appetite. I was quite anemic. Our parents were worried. They hoped for some improvement with a change of scene. Grandmother lived in a small house. To me it seemed warm and cozy. Part of her day was, of course, spent at the Temple. I remember her steaming and soaking whole kernels of wheat to help put color back in my skin.
Eliza's youngest, Henry Lee, continued with the management of the homestead and properties. He was not married until 9 June, 1920. It was then that he brought his bride, Ireta Rallison, to live at Fayette. Their eldest son, now Dr. Henry Homer Bartholomew, remembers Grandmother as part of their household when he was a small lad between three and four years. He recalls a sweet little presence but that she was rather heavy. Eliza had put on considerable weight by then. The records show her death as occurring at Gunnison. Aunt Roxie Ellen, her eldest daughter lived there. Was Grandmother living with Roxie or on a visit? I don't know. She passed away on the 10 April 1924. The burial took place four days later, 14 April at Fayette, her home of so many years. Mother, with likely a younger child or two, attended the funeral.
Sometime before Grandmother Bartholomew passed away on 10 April 1924-she gave me her gold watch and chain. It was nestled in the red velvet and black satin box -wherein she had received it from her husband so many years before. I had seen her wear it often. It was pinned to her blouse in a position from which she could easily snap open the lid and check the time. I know my Grandmother prized her treasure highly. It touched me to the depths to realize that she had chosen me, out of all of her numerous posterity, to be the recipient of such a gift. I felt humbled and have questioned my worthiness as I have also cherished the treasure. I've worn it seldom, but there comes such a flood of fond memories each time I open the box to look at its contents.
I admired and loved Grandmother very much. She was a force of strength
in my life and model for reaching above and beyond. I bless her memory.