Friday, February 8, 2013

Hair, Hair Everywhere--Whose Is It?

The History Room at the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers Museum in Salt Lake City holds an interesting framed work of Hair Art. It’s a collection of hair samples from early prominent Church leaders fashioned into a Weeping Willow Tree. I like looking at it, besides my Great Grandfather John Hamilton Morgan’s hair makes up branch 22.

Last year’s DUP History Lesson on “Pioneer Hair Art” explained that Weeping Willow Trees were often created at the passing of loved ones. The colors in this one are faded. The legend beneath the tree identifying the people whose hair was used, has become difficult to read.  

I walk by it each time I go to that department and decided to purchase a copy of it for myself.  A newer, easier to read legend, was recently made by a volunteer.

Hair samples from prophets and colleagues of John Morgan are included in the tree—the same people he writes of in his journal.

Cousin Karen M. gave me the following picture of Great Grandmother Helen Melvina “Mellie” Groesbeck Morgan’s hair collection. Widow of John Hamilton Morgan, she created her own hair collection. It appears to me it began with a sample of hair she probably received from her mother-in-law, ElizaAnn Hamilton Morgan. The card has a swatch of hair from John Morgan’s father, Garrard/Gerrard Morgan--affectionately known as, “Pa.”

All hair samples on the card, including those that are now missing, are  Auburn (probably). That may have been the reason Grandmother Morgan gathered them together. The other swatches are from a son and her grandchildren.

Junior Morgan, N. G. Morgan (son Nicholas Groesbeck Morgan)
John Morgan hair (husband)
John Morgan whiskers (husband)
Gerrard E. Morgan Jr. (grandson)
Dorothy Morgan (granddaughter)


  1. Those hair sculptures are such a curiosity. A friend actually called sometime last year from the DUP wondering if I knew that John Morgan's hair was in that sampler (?) in the History Room.

    I also saw an interesting hair sampler at the Women's Rights National Historical Park in Seneca Falls, New York, recently. They're interesting, but it's not a hobby I think I'll take up anytime soon. : )

  2. I agree they are interesting, some certainly beautiful. Hair Art isn't something we hear of anyone doing any more.