Thursday, January 30, 2014

Vash Young, childhood friend of Bessie Morgan Rex.

In this Waterloo (Farmer's Ward Area)  School class picture, Bessie Morgan
is #25 counting  L-R from the upper left corner. Vash Young is #8.
According to the photo services stamp on the reverse side of the picture, Bessie Morgan Rex received this copy in 1938. She then identified and wrote the names of the classmates she remembered on the back.

Bessie mentioned Vash Young in a few of the letters she wrote her son Harold between 1936-1938 linked here and here and here. Her letters and those she saved from Vash Young helped me come to understand why.

Vashni Young was born in Salt Lake in 1899. His paternal great-grandfather was one of Brigham Young's brothers. The 1900 census listed Vash and three younger siblings living with their grandparents; John F. and Margaret S. Cahoon.  

Vash Young became an American author of motivational and self-improvement books with a poplar following during the Great Depression. My Grandmother Bessie Morgan Rex became one of them.

His early life was one of deprivation and hardship. His father was more often absent than not, and his mother died when he was twelve years old. His schooling was cut short when he had to help support the family. Tragedy struck Vash again when his grandmother died and he left Salt Lake at sixteen to live with an older brother in Chicago. He struggled with unemployment, his lack of education and not enough money. He eventually moved to New York where he continued to battle depression, self-doubt and failure until the revelation that turned him into a success.  

The series of books he wrote explained his philosophy which placed great emphasis on helping others. He became a successful author, speaker, and insurance salesman. His final book Fortunes for All put together the background, philosophy and methods that secured his fortune and became a model for generations to follow, including Dale Carnegie. Vash Young died during retirement in Florida when he was 78. [1]

Vash Young
50 East 42nd Street
New York
April 10, 1936
Dear Bessie:

This is the first opportunity I have had to acknowledge one of the most interesting and entertaining letters I have ever received in my whole life—yours of March 4 which was handed to me by Hamilton Park when I was in Salt Lake last month. I remember you and your sister [Gail] very well and I also remember as though it were yesterday, all the incidents and characters mentioned in your letter. Incidentally, you have a very descriptive style and I want to place my order now for any book you may ever write—whether it is published or not.

I had one of the grandest times of my entire life during my last visit to dear old Salt Lake. It is too bad you could not have been there. Minnie Margetts [2] arranged a meeting of a number of our old classmates and in addition, I addressed two public meetings. I enclose reprint of an editorial from the Salt Lake Tribune. It was one of the finest compliments I ever had paid to me.

As I look back over my life it all seems like a fairy tale. I have been wonderfully blessed and am grateful beyond words. As a matter of fact, all I live for is to try to show my gratitude and appreciation by doing all I can for others.

It was a real treat to hear from you, Bessie, and I hope that some day our paths will cross. If and when I get out home again I will attempt to look you up. Meanwhile, if you or any of your family come this way please be sure to look me up.

With kindest regards

Sincerely yours,

(To be continued.) 

[1] Vash Young, Wikipedia. Fortunes for All. Wikipedia.
[2] Minnie Margettes was the daughter of Salt Lake pioneer actor, Phil Margetts (FamilyTree). She was 55, single, head of her household and a librarian in the 1930 Salt Lake City, Utah Census.
Picture and letter from Bessie Morgan Rex collection. 

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Bessie Morgan Rex. Letter to Harold March 13, 1938.

Randolph, Utah,

March 13, 1938

My dear boy,

My, what a delightful surprise. We received a letter Monday, and then one again Saturday from below the equator. It was certainly a joy to hear from you. I have said I don’t worry about you, for I know you are being taken care of, but I do get rather blue when I don’t hear from you. So it was very good to hear twice.

Right now a March blizzard is on. We have had plenty of moisture this last month, but it has been nice & warm but Oh so muddy.

Evanston, Woodruff & Kemmerer choirs are down practicing for next Sun. but I was tired after meeting, & so came home. I suppose Clara had to work. Hear Glen is home. Well, I’ll be patient these few remaining months. Did you get my letter telling you, if you came to N. Y. I want you to visit Vash Young. He gave me a very nice invitation for self or family. I didn’t get a letter off to you

in the middle of the week. Have been bothered with asthma & it certainly takes all my ambition. Otherwise I am fine.

We sang a hymn today we haven’t sung before. Behold, ‘tis eventide, in the S.S. Song book if you have one. P. 13. It is very beautiful. Bro. Pulham, our leader is every good.

Say, did you preach 50 min. Have you heard the maxim “No souls saved after 20 minutes.” Give the other poor fellow a chance.

Here it is the next morn & your father didn’t write. Well, I shall send this with the kiddies notes.

Have just listened to the news. The world is rather upset, isn’t it. I shudder to think of it. It snowed nearly all night & we have a white world this morning.

Must close this now & get Flora up to take it to the P. O.

We think of you all the time, & are all counting months. Love & kisses from all of us, my dear.



(This letter will be continued with information about Bessie's childhood friend Vash Young.)

Saturday, January 18, 2014

1958 Randolph Ward Sisters Gather in Chapel.

 Continued from here.
Of course Aunt Flora Elizabeth Rex Lamborn kept  a list identifying the sisters gathered in the Randolph Chapel in this 1958 photograph. Thank you Cousin Flora Lee!

Click on the images to enlarge!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Spring 1878 John Morgan returned to Rome, Georgia as Mission President. Joined Joseph Standing.

April 12, 1878. "I feel well in getting back to my old beat."

After spending the Christmas of 1877 at home in Salt Lake City with family and friends in the 14th Ward, John Morgan returned to Rome, Georgia, the nearby mountains and the people living there. He spent his days at home planning and gathering others and resources to return to the South. He returned to Georgia in the Spring of 1878 as Mission President of the Southern States Mission, a calling he held until January 1888.

On Monday, January 21, 1878 he wrote, "Friday was occupied in calling on President Taylor; in the afternoon distributed a lot of prizes to the school, after which I went to the President's office and from there to the Historian's office, where myself, Bro. Johnson and Bro. Williams were all set apart to go on a mission to the Southern States. Raining and bad weather tonight."

He noted in his February 18-23, 1878 journal entry, "Bro.[Matthias] Cowley was set apart  under my hands, my first effort. ... Bro Cowley  had supper with me."

On the train East John Morgan stopped several weeks with the new emigrants he'd left in Pueblo, Colorado the previous November. It was March 30, 1878 before John Morgan arrived back in Rome, Georgia.   "Took train for Rome where we arrived at 9:30 p.m. and put up at the Rome House."

Mountains around Rome: April 12, "I feel well in getting back to my old beat and I trust that the spirit of God will enlighten our minds so that we may be enabled to do a good work."

April 18, "Learned this a.m. that Jos. Standing had arrived from Utah. Returned from Baileys to Haywood Valley where I met some of the Brethren and stayed all night at Walter Smiths."

April 19, "Joseph came up this morning early and we had quite a meeting and a long talk. Wrote a letter to Brother Barnett and Cowley and one to Mellie." [ Morgan left his wife at home feeling ill. Feb 6, 1878, "At home today. Mellie quite unwell and confined to the bed."]

April 20, "Spent the day at Walter Smiths. Wrote some letters and talked."

April 21, 1878,  "Held meeting at 11 a.m. and quite a good attendance and spoke upon the history of the church. Brother Sabin bearing his testimony and Brother Standing reading for me. Went home with Jno., Barbour. Made arrangements for a meeting with Brother Smith Monday night."
(To be continued.)

Notes: I wasn't able to locate missionaries Johnson or Williams in the "Missionaries called to the Southern States Mission" for this time period among the John Hamilton Morgan papers, Special Collections, Marriott Library, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah. John Morgan Journal Entries are from that collection. Picture is from cousin Geraldine M. 2008 trip to Rome Georgia area.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Randolph, Utah Chapel 1950 and 1958

This Picture of the Randolph Ward was probably taken in 1936-38
 while Harold Rex was serving his mission in Brazil, South America.

The P.H. [Percy Harold ]Rex Family History Book Project has a lot of descendants looking back. 

Grandmother Bessie Morgan Rex's letter to her son triggered cousin Flora Lee's memories of the Randolph Ward Chapel she grew up attending. The following pictures were taken in the choir-seat section described in this earlier letter.

Grandmother (Aunt) Mary Elizabeth Herbert Rex is on the front row, 6th from the left. Her sister-in-law Agnes Rex appears to be on the front row also, 3rd from the left. Agnes’ daughter, Kathleen Rex Thornock appears to be on the top back row, 2nd from the left. It appears a few of the choir seats described in the 1938 remodel are in use here. 

This is the chapel cousin Flora Lee remembers from her youth. This picture was taken in about 1958 judging from what Flora Elizabeth Rex Lamborn is wearing. Flora is on the top row, third from the left.

Grandmother (Aunt) Mary Elizabeth Herbert Rex is on the second from the top row. If you locate the lady in black beneath the organ pipes, count four to the right. Mary is wearing a white corsage and a jacketed dress.
The only person I would take a guess identifying is Bess Rex. Note the little lady wearing black seated in the center of the first row wearing a corsage. I think Bess is directly behind her on the third row back wearing a hat; Elizabeth (Bess) Smith Rex (1890-1973) born in Manassa, Colorado, cousin of Bessie Morgan Rex.  Bess married Samuel Rex March 6, 1912, and moved to Randolph. Three months later on June 12, 1912, her cousin Bessie Morgan married Samuel’s brother Percy Harold Rex. They too settled in Randolph.

There have to be a hundred lovely Rich County women in this picture.  Anyone happening upon this picture and interested in identifying an ancestor, I’d love to add a name here.

Mary Elizabeth Herbert Rex,
Flora Elizabeth Rex Lamborn
Elizabeth (Bess) Smith Rex
Kathleen Rose Rex Thornock 
Agnes Amelia Hellstrom Rex 

A big Thank you to Grandma Aunt Mary's nieces for their generosity in gifting her papers to us.  Cousin Flora Lee has just finished writing Grandma Aunt Mary’s biography. Yeah! 
Note: History, Descendants, and Ancestry of William Rex & Mary Elizabeth Brough of Randolph, Utah.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Bessie Morgan Rex. Letter to Harold March 3, 1938.

Apostle Albert E. Bowen   [1937-1953]
 (31 October 1876 - 15 July 1953)

Randolph, Utah
March 3, 1938

My dear boy,

It is 5 p.m. but I must get this letter written. Am feeling a little down hearted. We have not heard from you since Feb 11, & Winnie heard from you last week. I just can’t understand why you don’t get our mail. Rec’d a letter from Helen today & she says she hasn’t had a line from you. Winnie said you were blue. It seems so bad to think we can do nothing. I’ll register this & every future letter if I have to.

We had a grand storm last night & we are all wet today. But the weather stays warm. Maeser & Flora have the mumps. Maser has a bad dose, but they are coming along all right.

How are you coming with your work down there. Is it fun to be D. P? [district president?] When we don’t hear from you I nearly wish you were coming home.

The church and recreation hall were dedicated Sunday. We had lovely services. Apostle Bowen was up. He was surprised at such buildings out here.

News came over the radio today that Los Angeles had had a bad flood. Worst in 60 years. They surely have lots of rain. Helen never mentions the bad weather  tho! 
Did I tell you Morgan has made doors & is making shelves for my china closets in the buffet. At last! He is a good carpenter. You should see his gas model plane, with a little gas engine in it. It isn’t finished yet, as he has to have money to buy materials. His teachers say he is some boy. But he doesn’t like basket-ball.

Did I tell you I received those pictures. Was the one for Helen like mine? Well, she has it—so. Miss Wahlstrom, the county nurse was in & when I told her where you were, she knew an elder there married Kennard I think. She found his picture in that group. She is Norine’s sister.

Tonight is choir practice & we have a very fine leader, I want to go.

I am going to stop with this page & let your father put in one. We are so concerned about you not hearing from us. Just know dearie, that we are thinking of you all the time, so please don’t get homesick. So many have told me to tell you hello. Grace Norris & I were talking about you Sunday. Enjoy your work to the fullest, as you haven’t much more time. We all send our love & best wishes for your continued success. Keep writing, if you do get discouraged.

Lovingly, Mother