Thursday, March 31, 2011

In Memory of Helen Rex Frazier.

In Memory of Helen Rex Frazier,born 98 years ago.

March 31, 1913 - June 26, 1982.

An autobiography of Helen begins here. Check the Index, or the Frazier Family Index page in the right column, for numerous posts about Helen.

Helen's granddaughter has a great new blog at the Frazier Files here.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ada Rex Jackson writes of her family. Concluded.

Downtown St. Louis, Missouri, Broadway, 1910. Continued from here: When Mary Mead Rex traveled from St. Louis, Missouri to Randolph, Utah in 1871, her son Thomas John Rex stayed behind in St. Louis. Mary Mead Rex’s granddaughters, Ada Rex, and cousin Julia Rex, wrote to one another. St. Louis, Mo. Dec. 27, 1899 Dear Cousin Ada. I was very glad to here [sic] from you. I am going to be fifteen years old in April. I am in the fifth reader and I have the large Arithmetic. My teachers name is Miss Roby. Our school has 32 rooms in it. There is a park right across from our school and when it snows we have a nice time coasting down the hill. There is about an inch and a half of snow on the ground. We do not have such large snow storms here as you do there. But when we do have a pretty good snow we have good sport while it lasts. Well Ada. I am getting sleepy and tired so I guess I'll close. Your loving cousin, Julia Rex
My earliest school days were in the early spring of 1898. In those days the older boys had to stay out of school to help on the farms. They would take in a beginners class and that was the first year that I went to school. My first teacher was Rhoda B. Cool of Logan. Utah. She was a very lovely woman and a very wonderful teacher. She later taught in the Utah State Agricultural College. She lived in Logan the remainder of her life. We all loved her. To know her was to love her. That six weeks in the spring was all the time that I spent in the first grade and began my second year in the fall of 1898. I had many happy days on the old homestead and on the farm. We always had good ponies to ride and lots of fun. We also had work to do. I had to help my mother in the house. My father said that even though he had a big family of boys, he would never raise a girl that couldn't ride a horse or hitch up a team and milk a cow, for which I was grateful in my later years. I went to school in Randolph until I was 13, then I graduated from the eighth grade. Then the next year I went back and retook the eighth grade after Christmas for about three months. My father was an early day school teacher. Although I never had a chance to go away to college we always studied at home. I think I have him to thank for my love of literature and history. I began my teaching as a Sunday School teacher. I was set apart by my Uncle Benjamin R. Brough in January 1907, just before my 15th birthday. I taught the Book of Mormon for four years. We didn't have any outlined lessons then, and I had to outline my lessons. The children loved the stories and I think we all gained a greater testimony of the origin of the Book of Mormon. I have had several of the class testify that it was through that class that they gained the love of that book and the wonderful mission of the Prophet Joseph Smith. In the early days we didn't have any seminaries, but there was religion class we used to have after school. Everything we did in religion had to be memorized. We taught the children to sing the songs by memory and one winter they had so many first graders that my cousin, who was teaching school took one class in the forenoon and one in the afternoon. All that winter I went at 12:00 noon and taught those who would be dismissed at noon. It was a wonderful work.

Later I was appointed stake secretary. Later I had the opportunity of reading over all those old minutes of all those old meetings (that we had held before I was married). Grace Norris and I were magazine agents for the young ladies magazine. That was years before the Era and the young women's organization were wedded together. We spent the summers with my cousin Leone, whom I have mentioned, and Alta, a girlfriend who lived across the road. When the grain was cut in the fall, we used to herd cows on the grain stubble to keep them from getting into the alfalfa. The three of us made doll cloths and Sister Wilson had us sew a whole lot of carpet rags for her one summer. She wasn't going to let us waste our time. In the fall of 1909 two old maid sisters came to Randolph and started a sewing class which I joined. Mother was in Salt Lake with father who was in the hospital, and I stayed in town and went to this sewing class. There were about twelve girls all our age and one young married woman and we had some great times together, it was while we were taking the sewing class that one of the girls eloped. A few of us knew the secret, but we weren't supposed to let it out until after they were married or until her mother and dad knew about it. In the fall of 1909, I met and began going with Victor Orin Jackson. We were married June 1, 1910, by President William Budge in the Logan Temple, for which I have been dearly grateful many times because of the blessings that followed throughout our married life. History of Ada Rex Jackson from BYU Historical Books Collection. Picture from Wikipedia.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Ada Rex Jackson writes of her family.

We stopped to take this picture while driving north to Randolph, Utah about ten years ago. My husband carried our grandson over to see the cattle behind the fence. Those are, I believe, the Crawford Mountains behind them.

On Thursday, March 24th, I read this interesting post at Genealogy's Star and followed the link to the BYU Historical Books Collection. I searched for family histories with the surname of Rex, and found the History, Descendants, and Ancestry of William Rex and Mary Elizabeth Brough of Randolph, Utah, of which I have a copy. They also have a copy of the history of William and Mary Rex’s daughter, Ada Rex Jackson and her family of Montana. There I found some interesting stories about the children of William and Mary Rex. Their history is here and here.

Ada Estella Rex Jackson wrote: Of our family. Mother had two girls and a little boy nearly six years old pass away before I came along, so you can imagine what a reception I received with a family of six brothers. They loved me but they teased me a lot. I had a favorite little bowl I liked to eat my cereal out of. My brothers were always hiding it from me, but I would manage to find it or Mother would make them give it to me. One time I couldn't find it for months, and then one day I found it in the bottom of the flour bin. They had put it there when the bin was almost empty and then filled the bin with flour. Needless to say, I watched that bowl closely the next time the flour bin was filled.

My earliest recollection of our old home, a log cabin, was of a large cottonwood tree out in the yard where we had a big swing. We used to swing high up into the branches of that tree. Our brothers would push us high. I had a sister, Freda, who was four years younger than me. My cousin, Leone, Aunt Hanna's daughter lived just across the road. We spent many hours in the shade of that tree swinging. We made a play house in the trees along the side of the lot. We had many happy times together playing there. When we played dinner together we would send Freda to the house for something to eat, because we knew that Mother wouldn't refuse her.
Freda, Percy, and Ada Rex

Following are two letters I received as a child:
Hobard, Tasmania Nov. 16. 1899

Dear Little Sisters Ada and Freda, It is with pleasure that I again write you a few lines to let you know how I am. I am well and hope these few lines will find you all the same. Enjoying good health and able to eat three meals a day. I wish I was close so you could come in and wash dishes for me and sweep the floor and make the bed, but be good little girls so when I have finished my mission and come home you will be able to come and see Agnes and Will and have dinner with us. Say your prayers every night, then our Heavenly Father will like you and keep you from harm and getting sick. Be good to Agnes and then she will like you. I always remember you in my prayers.

Goodbye. Your loving brother.Will Love and Kisses xxxxxxxxxxxx

Note: Ada’s oldest brother, William Thomas Rex (1875-1962), served a mission to Australia. He left Randolph on March 1, 1899, six weeks after he married Agnes Hellstrom. He was gone for three and a-half years.

(To be continued.)Picture from Helen Rex Frazier collection.

Monday, March 21, 2011

William Rex taught school in Argyle, Utah.

This picture of Flora Rex Lamborn pointing out a family history location in Randolph, Utah, was taken in 1996 at a Rex Family Reunion. She and her sister, Winnie Rex Andrus, took Rex descendants up and down the streets and lanes of Randolph pointing out family history sites, and telling stories of the people who lived there.

Those are the Crawford Mountains in the background, and are to the East of Randolph. While looking for my best picture of those mountains (which I've yet to find), I came upon this one. I've gathered some additional information about great grandfather William Rex, I want to include here.

William Rex (1844-1927).
Farmers and ranchers south of Randolph formed a small settlement in about 1875 called Kennedyville. As other families joined them and their numbers increased, they received permission from the Randolph Ward to hold their own meetings, which were held in the homes of the settlers. In June 1893 Bishop Archibald McKinnon of Randolph set John Kennedy Jr. apart to preside over the Saints in Kennedyville. In 1895 it was decided at a regular Sunday meeting that the name of the ward should be called Argyle. Most of the settlers were of Scottish origin and were pleased with the new name.

A school was established in the Argyle district, and school was held in community homes. Soon after , they erected a one-room brick school building. William Rex was the first teacher. The Sunday School was organized on December 1, 1895, with William Rex as superintendent.

I didn’t learn how long William Rex taught school at Argyle, however, the school there was closed in 1915, and the students transferred to Randolph, Utah, because the roads had improved.
Pioneer Pathways, International Society Daughters of Utah Pioneers, Printed in U.S.A. by Talon printing, Salt Lake City, Utah, 1998, volume one, pgs 147-148. I took the picture.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Mary Elizabeth Brough Rex funeral. June 3, 1939.

These pictures were taken at Great Grandmother Mary Elizabeth Brough Rex's funeral in Randolph, Utah on June 3, 1939. She died at home on May 30, 1939. They are from Helen Rex Frazier's scrapbook, and were sent to her in Oakland, California because she wasn't able to travel home to Utah for this funeral, having been there the preceding November (1938) when her mother, Bessie Morgan Rex, passed away.
These are the surviving Rex Granddaughters who attended their grandmother's funeral. The youngest girl in front is Flora Rex Lamborn. The two granddaughters on the back row to the right are Winnie Rex Andrus, and Kathleen Rex Thornock. The granddaughter on the left, middle row, is Mary Rex Rufi. I'm not certain of the others.
Uncle Will and Aunt Agnes Rex
Uncle Vic and Aunt Ada Rex Jackson
Aunt Bess and Uncle Sam Rex
Aunt Caddie and Uncle Arth [Arthur] Rex

Aunt Maude and Uncle Alf [Alfred] Rex

Uncle Ose [Oseland] Rex and children;
Ada, Amy, John, Edna

The Adas; Ada Muir, Ada Rex,
Ada McKinnon, and Ada Rex Jackson
William and Mary Brough Rex children and spouses.
P. H. [Percy Harold] is on the far left.

William and Mary's children; Sam Rex, P. H. Rex,
Alf Rex, Ose Rex, Arth Rex, Will Rex, and Ada Rex Jackson
The Brough Sisters (l-r); Ada [Adria] Brough Muir,
Prudence Brough Weston, Hannah Brough Telford.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

William and Mary Elizabeth Brough Rex. Part 2. Concluded.

Continued from here.
Mary served as counselor to Sister South in the Y.L.M.I.A. (Young Ladies Mutual Improvement Association). She and her mother and sisters became members of the Relief Society when it was organized in Randolph by Sister Eliza R. Snow. Mary was called as the first secretary.

William and Mary Elizabeth Brough Rex,
50th Wedding Anniversary (1874-1924)
Always active in the community, William held numerous civic positions; justice of the peace, county clerk, treasurer, and superintendent of public schools. He also served as superintendent of the Sunday School, secretary of the 102nd Seventies Quorum, a High Councilman, and was president of the High Priest quorum in the Woodruff Stake at the time of his death. “He was always very young looking and walked straight rapidly.”

Late in William’s life, while attending “a family reunion at Bear Lake, he dived off the pier. A tourist shouted, ‘Help! Get that old man out of the water before he drowns!’ William came to the surface and swam off, taking long, steady strokes through the water. He was also a perfect marksman and a good boxer.”
[Note: From his youth he was nearly blown off of the deck of the James Pennell on the voyage from England; in St. Louis he swam with his brothers in the Mississippi River to retrieve wood for fuel for their mother; he was a soldier during the Civil War; he helped settle, and thereafter lived in Randolph, Utah. Of course he would swim in Bear Lake in his senior years!]
William and Mary “always kept busy and had everything in perfect order. They grew beautiful flowers, lawns and vegetables. There were pansy beds around the lilac trees, columbines and Iceland poppies—asparagus, rhubarb patches, and parsnips, which were dug in the spring after the frost left, then cooked and browned in homemade butter. Wild roses were planted by the corral gate to hide the outdoor toilet. The boards around the old pump were always scrubbed white—as were her doorsteps! William always folded his newspaper neatly and placed his old-fashioned spectacles on top. He had a certain way of turning his spoon when putting it in his mouth so he wouldn’t get food on his mustache.

“Mary made hotcross buns for the family on every Good Friday—a family tradition. Humble, sincere family prayers were always a part of their lives.”

Iceland Poppies

William preceded Mary in death on the 7th of April, 1927. Mary passed away at her home twelve years later on May 30, 1939. The [Randolph] Reaper headed her obituary, “Aged Pioneer Sister Called By Death.” They are buried in the Randolph Cemetery.

Pictures from Helen Rex Frazier collection and Wikipedia.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

12-William and 13-Mary Elizabeth Brough Rex. Part 1.

William Rex
b. 22 Nov 1844, Sherborne, Dorset, England
p. William Rex, Mary Mead
m. Mary Elizabeth Brough, 6 Oct 1874, Salt lake City, Utah
d. 6 Apr 1927, Randolph, Utah

Mary Elizabeth Brough
20 Dec 1858, Longton, Straffordshire, England
p. Samuel Brough, Elizabeth Bott
d. 30 May 1939, Randolph, Utah

William immigrated from England with his family on the James Pennell in 1850, and Mary immigrated from England with her family on the Cynosure in 1863. Both of their families joined the earliest settlers in Randolph, Utah.

The history of William Rex and Mary Brough’s youth is included in earlier posts.
Mary Brough; part 1, part 2.
William Rex; part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, part 6.
In about 1870 when the Broughs walked over the hills from Morgan, to Randolph, Utah, it took them a week. Mary was twelve years old, and it was her job to place a large rock behind the back wheel of the wagon when they’d stop on an incline. Near the same time, William Rex and his brother, Alfred, were clearing a lot and building a cabin in Randolph, Utah for their mother, Mary Mead Rex Clucas.
On October 6, 1874 William and Mary were married in the Endowment House in Salt Lake City, Utah. Their trip to Salt Lake City was made in a covered wagon and took them a week. Mary’s “trousseau” was folded in an old pillow slip, she was fifteen years old and William was thirty years old.

The first winter, they made their home with William’s mother, Mary Mead Rex, in the cabin William and his brother built for her. William had two cows and a team, and took care of the U. S. mail driver’s horses. He saved enough money to buy the lot on the corner of Field Street and Third East in the spring. It was north and adjoined his mother’s lot. There was a one-room house with a cellar on it.

William and Mary sang in Randolph’s first ward choir and Mary remained a member for fifty-five years. They often sang a favorite song together, “Kitty from Cork and Dandy Pat.”

William was the second missionary called from the Randolph Ward to serve a mission. In his diary he wrote : “Called on a mission Oct 6th 1884 by Pres. John Taylor at the General Conference held in Salt Lake City. Received the news on Saturday evening the 13th. On the following Sunday morning I went to the Post Office and got the Deseret News and there sure enough was my name, booked for a Mission to England, the home of my childhood and the land of my ancestors.”

“On Sunday Oct 26th gave my ‘farewell’ sermon to a large congregation of the Saints. It was very short as I could not control my feelings sufficiently to say a great deal. “

Monday October 27th 1884. I arose shortly after three o’clock and began to get ready for my journey, a cold clear morning, quite frosty. My brother-in-law, Thomas Longhurst, went with me to drive and bring the team back. Bade my wife and children [William Thomas-9, Alfred George-6, Samuel-1, Arthur Henry-2 weeks] a loving good bye at 5 a.m. and committed them to the care of our Heavenly Father.”
Mary sold a big roan cow for $13.00 and bought food for that winter. She would sell a cow once in a while and send William the money. While William was in England, Mary’s father helped the family, and her mother gave them ¼ pound of freshly churned butter once a week.

William returned home two years later and struggled to get established again. Ultimately William became a progressive farmer and homesteaded some of the best land in the valley. He taught school during some winters. They took in boarders and were able to secure a comfortable living and obtain more land. William also served as Rich County Clerk.

Their children:William Thomas Rex (1875-1962)
Charles Rex (1877-1882)
Alfred George Rex (1878-1956)
Mary Elizabeth Rex (1880-1880)
Olive Celeste Rex (1881-1882)
Samuel Rex (1883-1967)
Arthur H. Rex (1884-1952)
John Osland Rex (1887-1967)
Percy Harold Rex (1889-1977)
Ada Estella Rex Jackson (1892-1974)
Myrtle Rex (1894-1894)
Alfreda Rex (1895-1901)
Hyrum Mack Rex (1901-1902)

“William and Mary passed through many hardships during the early years of their marriage. They buried two children in one grave and another shortly before.”

(To be continued.)

Percy Harold Rex and one of his brothers visiting (in 1960's)
the home their father, William Rex, built for his mother in 1870-71.
Pictures from Helen Rex Frazier collection. History, Descendants, and Ancestry of William Rex & Mary Elizabeth Brough of Randolph, Utah, compiled and edited by Ronald Dee Rex, 1999. pgs 95-119. Randolph--A Look Back, written and compiled by S. Thomson, M. J. S. Tomson, J. D. Digerness, 1981, pgs. 423-424.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

William and Mary Mead Rex [Clucas]. Part 6. Concluded.

Continued from here.

Mary wrote in her diary, “Today, April 22, 1869, my two sons, Alfred G. and William left St. Louis for Utah with the first train-load of cattle to go west on the new railroad, to be delivered to Bishop Smoot of Provo.”

“They unloaded at Uinta, Weber County [Utah] on the 12th of May, 1869. From there they drove their cattle to the point of delivery in Provo [Utah]where they were received by Bishop Smoot.

“William found employment with the Overland Telegraph company and went on to St. George [Utah]. Alfred G. worked at odd jobs until the spring of 1870 when he joined a company of Saints who had been sent to help colonize Randolph, Rich County, Utah. Later in the summer William arrived in Randolph where he and Alfred built a log home on Canyon Street and Third East in anticipation of their mother’s arrival. The home still stands after 90 years of use." --Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol5, Kate B. Carter, "The Rex Family," by Edna B. Rex, 1962, pgs 498-500.

“Mary arrived in Randolph, Utah in June, 1871, twenty-one years after leaving England, to the log home her sons Alfred and William had built for her. Thomas stayed in St. Louis, but she brought her two remaining children, Charles and Mary, to her Third East and Canyon Street log home with her. "

“Mary took her family to Salt Lake in November of that year and was endowed and sealed to William Rex, November 6 [1871]. Her daughter, Mary Clucas, was also sealed to her and William. Charles, the youngest son, moved on to California, where he died at Susanville, in 1874. Her sons, Alfred and William, were very good to their widowed mother and always shared with her what they had.

“Mary Mead Rex was a tall, good-looking woman with thick, dark hair in braids which she wore over the top of her head. She was always willing to help care for the sick. She homesteaded land east of Randolph on the Bear River, now known as the Telford property. Her daughter, Mary Mead, took a mid-wife obstetric course in Salt Lake City and helped deliver many babies in the Randolph area.
“Mary had a row of gooseberry and red-currant bushes south of her house, and an asparagus bed. She had flowers on both sides of her walk from her door to the gate. She let neighbor children pick berries and flowers with her.

“Mary was a very good housekeeper. When the Indians came to her home, she always gave them food, but was annoyed when they put their dirty feet in her clean oven or on her hearth. Although she was good to the Indians, she was always afraid of them.

“In 1882 Elizabeth Corless and Thomas Wilson were married and for the first three winters of their married life they lived in one room of Mary’s home and paid their rent by milking her cows and doing her chores. She always made very good butter.

“She was a beautiful knitter and kept knit shams on her bed and wide knit lace across the bottom of her white aprons. She loved her Bible and from it learned to be an excellent speller. A beautiful penman, she kept a neatly written diary, still legible.

“Mary Mead Rex died in Randolph, December 10, 1899, at the age of 86, at the home of her daughter, Mary Mead Pearce. The following was written of her at that time: “Mary had her share of joys and sorrows but she bore them all with calmness and fortitude. She has set an example worthy of imitation.”-- Randolph; A Look Back, Mary Mead Rex, submitted by Kathleen Rex Thornock, 1981, pgs 421-422.

Randolph, Utah Cemetery.