Sunday, August 25, 2013

Bessie Morgan Rex letter to Harold. January 10, 1938.

P. H. Rex and Bessie Morgan Rex home in Randolph, Utah

Continued from here: Bessie Morgan Rex's letters to her missionary son Harold Morgan Rex, serving a mission in Brazil.
Randolph, Utah
January 10, ‘38

My dear son,   further away than ever

It is early 8:30 & so much excitement. Maeser just came in from the stock show.
Well, first of all. We received your letter telling us of your transfer. My dear, I am simply overjoyed, for you, both for your promotion and change of field. I’m sure you are enjoying the change, & I’m glad you are in a cooler climate. I have all the faith in the world that you will make good.

Now, I suppose you are wanting to hear about the boys calves. Morgan came in 4th place again, and Maeser’s calf stayed in the coliseum. Such happy kids. It is good experience for them. Have they economized. Remember? And how glad I am that we can trust them to not smoke & carouse around like some do when they are out of our sight.

Received a letter from Helen tonight too & she said she saw your picture with the basketball team in the Era. She is so anxious to hear from you. I hope you
have written to her. She is one grand girl. They both work in the ward. I’m sure if Glenn will just come near doing his part they can have an ideal home.

You know, I have been rather under the weather with cold, but your letter & Maeser coming home have made me so much better.

Roy came in just as I finished reading your letter. He is going back to the mission field Sunday & came in to say goodbye. He sends his best regards. Sheldon isn’t going for awhile. I surely hope he doesn’t wait too long & lose the spirit altogether.

I heard a program Sat. night on Brazilian history. It was very nice, and I enjoyed it very much.
This has been the strangest winter so far. No snow or cold weather, but maybe it will be like it was the winter you left.  Oh, that Feb. night you left. I shall never forget it.

Here it is 7:00 a.m. I must finish this and get it off as I seem to be the 
only one writing this time.

The wind has blown so hard all night long, but hasn’t stirred up much in the way of snow clouds.
I must tell you. The church is practically finished. It is to be carpeted, draped, & new choir seats. The amusement hall has been painted. That is, the walls. Randolph can be proud of her church buildings. Did you get those pictures I sent you? I just cant understand the mail.

Blair Findlay sent us a card & sent his regards to you. I think he is making out very well now. Did you get the shirts we sent.

Well, I must close. My dear, our hearts  & thots are ever with you. It seems far away to look at the map, but I don’t worry about you as I would if you were just there on business. Do your part my dear, & all will be well with you. Best love & kisses from all of us, and a good big extra hug from


Note: I wonder who Blair Findlay, Roy and Sheldon are?

Friday, August 23, 2013

Deseret News. Joseph Standing wrote a friend in Salt Lake, February 1876.

Elder Joseph Standing also wrote about his missionary service with Elder John Morgan. This newspaper article is of particular interest. Elder Standing stayed with Garrard and Eliza Ann Hamilton Morgan and described attending a Methodist revival meeting with John Morgan's brother, James. John Morgan frequently wrote of receiving letters from his brother James.

John Morgan and Joseph Standing--Missionaries
He Being Dead Yet Speaketh
Waiting for Joseph Standing's Arrival
1876 Missionary Companions
1876 March
1876 April
1876 April 4-8
1876 April 9-13
1876 April 14-18
1876 April 19-23

Deseret News, Salt Lake City,  Utah, 
March 22, 1876
Missionaries in Illinois – Here is how Elder Joseph Standing, a young man of this city, writes from Illinois, Feb. 25th, to a friend in this city --  “I left St. Louis on the 11th inst, for Normal, Illinois, where I arrived after seven hours travel. I stopped over night with the parents of Brother John Morgan, who told me he was at a place twelve miles distant, called Money Creek. I joined him next day, finding him in good health and spirits. The same evening we held meetings in a private home.”

“When I have heard the Elders at home tell of their missionary experiences, and the many different stories and misrepresentations that are told of us as a people, I could not realize that they were facts. But since I came to the State of Illinois I can understand things as they are. The past week Brother Morgan and myself held five meetings, four of which were in private houses, the public ones being closed against us, for fear that some unfortunate being might possibly believe in “that horrible doctrine.” We, nevertheless, had very good meetings and bore our testimonies in a manner that the honest in heart could fully understand.  

I had heard tell of the “Mourners  Bench” when at home but never fully understood it til one night at Normal, when in company with     brother Morgan’s brother James, I attended a Methodist revival.  I cannot say I enjoyed the meeting because to me it was something new and strange to see men and women, to the number of thirty or forty, stamping, shouting, and crying at the top of their voices. I have been taught to believe that ‘God’s house is a house of order,’ and any house different than that I do not want. There are great revival meetings being held throughout all this (McClean) county and it needs them, for out of a population of some 50,000 there are 2,700 cases on the dockets for trial.

Some of our whole-souled sectarian friends have expressed a desire for us to leave this vicinity and they think a mob armed with eggs would materially help us on our journey. If the eggs are dished up in the right style I will not object to them.  There is a great deal of prejudice against us and against those whom God has raised up to befriend us,  who have never turned out to listen to our teachings. All kinds of absurd stories are circulated about us by beings who probably had a hand in the expulsion of the Saints from Nauvoo.

“Brother Morgan has done much good here, and the testimony he has born will not soon be forgotten, and jointly, we will be of great help to each other, and by the aid of the Holy Spirit be the means of doing good to our fellow-men. We are traveling toward the Indiana border, and preaching at every opportunity.” 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

John Morgan and Joseph Standing Mission Travels continue, April 19-23, 1876.

Wabash River, by Henry Hamilton, 1778. from Wikipedia

(Continued from here.)

Gopher Hill Church, April 19, 1876 - Went to Mr. Dixon’s this morning and secured his consent for the use of the Church. Went to the school house and had a lecture announced. Came back to Mr. Robert Creigh and stopped over night. Spoke at the Church to a moderate sized audience, who many of them went to sleep.

Wabash River, April 20, 1876 – Walked over to the “Log School House,” and secured a stopping place at the Widow Maginnis’. Walked over to Baltimore School House to learn about our appointment for tomorrow night. Spoke to a large audience who paid close attention and listened carefully to what was said. Met a Mr. Edward Lowe who had been to Utah and had a long talk with him. He thinks of returning there this fall. Reading some of the Doctrine & Covenants each day. Are treated well in the neighborhood.

Baltimore, Indiana, April 21, 1876 – Started early to go to Mrs. Gamison’s to get the Razor and Brush, got out of the way and had a long walk. Had dinner a t Mr. Jones’. Came on down to this place where we held meeting tonight. Stayed all night at Mr. Bogess’, an Infidel who treated us kindly. A small audience out to hear us.

Covington, Indiana, April 22, 1876 – Came over to the place this morning and got a letter from Jimmie. Called on the Editors of the paper and read the news. Came out to Mr. Shelby’s. Had dinner and returned to town. Spoke at the Court House to a good sized audience who gave close attention. Stayed all night at Mr. Shelby’s.

Covington Indiana, April 23, 1876 – Raining this morning. Read, talked during the day. Spoke at the Church this afternoon to a small audience owing to the rain storm. Talked till late with Mr. & Mrs. Shelby. Feel we are doing some good in this locality and trust that our words may have their due effect.

The Shelbys of Covington, Indiana 1870 Census.

Older pictures of interest in historic Covington, Indiana picture collection:
Old Court House
Train Depot
Washington Street 1860
View Across the Wabash: Birds Eye view of Covington
Ferry Boat crossing the Wabash
Nebeker Farm

(To be continued.)
John Hamilton Morgan Journal, Special Collections, Marriott Library, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

John Morgan and Joseph Standing Mission Travels continue, April 14-18, 1876.

April 14, 1876 [continued in Warren County, Indiana]-  Came down to Mr. Robt. Jones and spent the after part of the day. Stormed considerably during the day. Spoke at Zion School House to a large audience who gave close attention. Was kindly treated by all.

Covington, Indiana, April 15, 1876 - Came over to Covington this morning and got my boots fixed. Looked around town awhile and then came to Mr. O. Shelby’s where we stayed all night. Was well treated and felt more at home than we have for some time.

Note: In 1883 John Morgan and his wife Mellie visited this area and Mr. Shelby. In 1885 John Morgan wrote of meeting Mr. Shelby while traveling in the Southern States Mission. “1885, February 5, Arrived in New Orleans at 2:30 p.m. On the train between Mobile and N.O. met Olivery Shelby, of Ind.” 

Covington, Indiana, April 16, 1876 - Wrote letters and read during a portion of the day. Went to meeting and heard a Methodist sermon that was decidedly thin. Visited the Poor House during the afternoon and saw enough to make a man shudder. How much better for the world to organize on a principle that would enable all to help themselves. I feel thankful for the privilege of knowing at least a portion of the Gospel.

Covington, Indiana, April 17, 1876 - Went up to town this A.M. and called on the Sheriff and obtained the Court House to speak in. Called on the Editors of the papers and asked them to insert a notice of the meeting which they did. Walked about town considerable. Wrote a letter to Mellie and went to a log rolling in the afternoon. Still at Mr. Shelby’s Cool and unpleasant.

State Line City April 18, 1876 - Left Mr. Shelby’s this morning and crossed over the River. Got our washing and changed underclothing. Had dinner at Mr. Robt. Jones. Joseph went up the River to make appointments while I started West. Walked all afternoon, secured two school houses and conditionally secured a church to speak in. Weather warm and beautiful. Stayed all night in Samuel Clemns’. As fine a country about here as I have seen anywhere.

(To be continued.)
John Hamilton Morgan Journal, Special Collections, Marriott Library, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah. Pictures from Wikipedia.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

John Morgan and Joseph Standing Mission Travels continue, April 9 – April 13, 1876.

Looking across the Wabash River to Fountain County.

Warren County, Indiana

Courthouse, Warren County, Indiana, 1877.

Continued from here.

State Line, Illinois, April 9, 1876 —Visited Mr. Wm. Cunningham this morning. Spent the forenoon of the day very pleasantly in conversation with him and his family. Had dinner with them and returned to Mr. Johnsons’s and bidding them goodby, came on up to Mr. Mort Lindsay’s where we stopped tonight. Spoke at the Price schoolhouse to a very large audience, on the prophecies, who paid close attention to what we had to say.

Johnsonville, Illinois, April 10, 1876 —Came to this point and secured the Brush College to speak in. Stopped at Mr. Jas. Johnson’s and was kindly treated. Miss Dora played on the piano which I appreciated. Spoke to a good audience.

Warren County, Indiana, April 11, 1876 —Raining this morning hard. Remained at Jas. Johnson’s during the forenoon. Came in town to Mr. Wagner’s and stayed all night. Obtained the School House to hold meeting in. Warm and pleasant this afternoon.

Alvin, Illinois, April 12, 1876 —Went over to the Wabash River in the morning and secured another school house to hold meeting in. Came back to Mr. Frank Salt’s where I stayed over night. Spoke at the School house to a fair audience. Looks stormy.

April 13, 1876 Came over to Mr. Lyon’s and leaving our valises, we started for Covington, distance some seven miles, had a lontg tiresome walk. Received a letter from Mellie and one from Jimmie. Spoke at the Bunker Hill school house to a good sized audience. Came home with a Mr. Wm. Salts, who treated me kindly. This farm is the one that Brother John Murdock was born on and quite a number of Mormon people went from this locality. We are now in Indiana and have been well treated and kindly received by all. There appears to be a different atmosphere here to what there is in Illinois. Am in hopes that we shall be able to do a good work in the neighborhood.

Covington is a city in and the county seat of Fountain County, Indiana.
Jimmie [James] Morgan (1850- ): John Morgan's brother.

(To be continued.)

John Hamilton Morgan Journal, Special Collections, Marriott Library, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah. Pictures from Wikipedia.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

January 11, 1881 from John Morgan Journal.

Wikipedia picture of Joseph Standing and Rudger Clawsen
 while serving as missionary companions in Georgia.

From John Hamilton Morgan's journal--written in Salt Lake, January 11, 1881. In the office writing. James Standing [presumably Joseph Standing's father or brother] had dinner with us. Brother McBride called to the S. S. [Southern States] Mission reported himself for duty and would be ready at the appointed time. At night attended a lecture by Rudger Clawsen at the 12th Ward School house. It was well delivered. Learned that Joseph Smith, H. Smith,  S. S. Smith, C. Cowdery, D. Whitmer, and O. Whitmer were the 1st members of the church.

John Morgan was in Salt Lake preparing to return to the Southern States Mission and perhaps he was awaiting the February arrival of a child. On the morning of the 11th [February] at 1:15 Mellie gave birth to our first boy, over which we had much rejoicing.

Rudger Clawson was Joseph Standing’s missionary companion in Varnell, Georgia, and was with him on July 21, 1879 when Standing was murdered by a mob. Clawson afterwards turned to the mob and defied them to “shoot!” They soon dispersed in the face of his defiance and willingness to face them. Elder Clawson returned his slain companion’s body to Salt Lake.

Most of an entire year is missing from the John Morgan journal following Joseph Standing’s death until January 1, 1881, when John Morgan worked from his office on school and mission matters. 

James Standing (1815-1886)
James Varley Standing (1848-1925)

Earlier John Morgan and Joseph Standing Missionary posts are here:

Southern States Missionaries: Elam Wells McBride, set apart Jan 22, 1881 – date returned Nov 7, 1882