How happy was I when I was able to own a good team and a saddle horse and knew they were
my own. Oh, why should I not live the life I
loved the most? But now, why should I let my
mind wander so far from the things I started to tell?
I was talking about dear grandmother, Yes, very dear to me because I had often sat and listened to my father tell his story; the story of a dear mother who had worked hard to help support a large family, and on the side had laid away a nice little sum of money to help defray the expenses of the ones first to leave for Zion.
The husband and the two older sons, John and William, were the first of the family to leave for America. It was the year 1863. Yes, this was the story of a boy who had been almost constantly at her side until he had to break away from his mothers arm and leave her weeping.
Time had not blotted out the memory of that sad parting. He still thought and talked of his mother. His love for her was deep and true. None could sit and listen to his story without being affected by his words and emotions. Often have I heard my father tell of those sad experiences.
The boy had grown older now. He had raised a large family of his own. He now knew better a fathers love, and was better able to understand his mother, her love for him and the sacrifices she had made that her family might come to Zion. When he realized that he might never see his mother again, he sometimes bowed his head in sorrow. I especially remember one night as I noticed that he sat as if in deep meditation; then I said, Father, what are you thinking about? I knew it was hard for him to control his emotions. His reply was, I am thinking of my mother. I feel I should go to England and see her. I would like to bring her here, to our home; her children are all here and she is left alone.
The year 1869 was a great year for the Latter Day Saints; the time of the completion of the two greatest railroads of all time; the Union Pacific and the Southern Pacific, thus connecting California and Utah with the eastern part of the United States. That year many emigrants came to Utah. No more did they have to walk across the thousand miles of stretched-out prairies, the plains of Nebraska, Kansas, Wyoming, and the mountains of Utah.
That was the year two more of Grandmothers children left her. I speak of Aunt Ann and Uncle Tom. She then was left with one child, the youngest daughter Sarah, whom we knew as Aunt Sarah Parker.
Aunt Sarah raised three children in England, but was not happy with her husband who could not be persuaded to leave off the use of liquor. Then after her son John Parker died, Father and Uncle John Winterton sent money to arrange for the emigration expenses of cousins Eliza and Fred Parker. It was soon after that Aunt Sarah followed her children to America.
And thus Grandmother was left to do for herself and get along the best she could during her old and declining years. Father sometimes wrote to her and pleaded with the hope that he might persuade her to come to Zion. He would pay all her expenses. Her answer was, I am afraid I could not stand the long trip and especially the long voyage across the sea. I am wondering if my grandfathers exaltation in the Kingdom of God might not have been greater had he have remained with his wife a little longer and helped her to take care of the growing children and until they all could see their way clear to come to Zion. I think Grandmother
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