Friday, July 22, 2011

Happy 215th Birthday, Mary Bathgate (1796-1884)!

Gayle Wells' third-great-grandmother

Everyone seems to know Scottish pioneer Mary Bathgate's rattlesnake story, now popularized in Gerald Lund's Fire of the Covenant book and two different Ensign articles.  However, her mysterious marital history continues to elude researchers--which is why I'm calling her by her maiden name, instead of "Mary Bathgate Hutcheson Murray Martin Wark Logan Shelley" as other family historians prefer.

Happy 204th Birthday, Thomas Grover (1807-1886)!

Gawain's second-great-grandfather

Thomas is perhaps the most prominent of our pioneer ancestors, with over fifty children and a large posterity.  He was said to be the handsomest man in Nauvoo.  Given his curious divorces, he is also somewhat enigmatic.  Plus he's mentioned in scripture, D&C 132:124.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Happy 210th Birthday, Mary Fielding Smith (1801-1852)!

No relation

Another female favorite from early Church history, Mary's spunky nature and undaunted faith is an enduring inspiration.
her statue and house at This is the Place

a plaque honoring her there
Mary was Hyrum Smith's wife, and the mother of the future prophet Joseph F. Smith.  Her independence in besting the leader of her wagon train and beating him to Utah, despite all her challenges, is a fabulous story.  I also appreciate that when her home was preserved and moved to This is the Place, they put it off by the lake since she had also chosen to live away from the main body of settlers in Salt Lake.  Barbara Smith wrote a lovely piece about this home nearly thirty years ago, which is found online here.

I would give Mary a chance to elect a female president.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Happy 189th Birthday, William Smith Muir (1822-1896)!

Anna Cramer's great-grandfather

William was a Scottish pioneer, Mormon Battalion member, patriarch, and innovative man.  I like the twinkle in his eyes.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Happy 69th Anniversary!

John & Nita, July 18, 1942

John & Nita

Still singing together all these decades later!  Thank you for your example and love.