Sunday, July 26, 2015

A Deluge of Effects from Mary Sophia Harvey Kingsley Leonard Amy and her children

Recently, I was contacted by a distant cousin who had read this blog post about Rose Adele Kingsley Bloss.  Rose Saves Family  This cousin lives near the homesite of the home that Elias Kingsley built for his brother Elihu and sister in law Mary Kingsley around 1850.   She rescued many of the effects from this old home before it had to be destroyed 3 years ago due to it's age and deteriorating condition.  After getting acquainted on the phone, she offered to GIVE ME many of these effects!

We visited Sheffield, Tionesta, Warren and Kingsley Pennsylvania a few weeks ago to meet our cousin, research the area and collect the effects our cousin had in mind.  For a genealogist, it was like winning the lottery!

As I have done a quick once-over of the materials, I find in my possession some belongings of the following individuals:

Mary Sophia Harvey Kingsley Leonard Amy
Rose Adele Kingsley Bloss, Mary's daughter
Carolyn 'Carrie' Bloss  Lynde, Roses' daughter
Olive Maud Bloss Broman, Roses' daughter

The home also contained some effects belonging to Alice Bloss Workman as well, but they are being given to the Workman descendants.

There are many photos, almost without exception none are labelled with names.  There are many letters to the women listed above, as well as some hand crocheted lace, a couple of shoes, an apron, a infant girl's taffeta dress and an infant pinafore.  In all, it filled a rollaway carry on sized suitcase to the brim, with the fabric items and delicate rolled photos carried loosely in paper bag with handles.

I can hardly wait to catalog and post what I have in this blog!

As I process these effects, I will put what I learn here on the blog for help in understanding what we can learn from it.  Perhaps something will answer our nagging questions--- why did Mary leave?  I will also update the different posts here with the new information and date it.

I'm so grateful for these generous cousins!

Stay tuned!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Emily Steele Jensen Joins the Daughters of Utah Pioneers

In 1933, Emily Steele Jensen applied for membership in the Wiltshire Camp of the Los Angeles Company of the Daughters of Utah Pioneers organization.  She cited several pioneers in her lineage, including John Steele Jr, Catherine Campbell Steele, James Jepson, Eleanor Nightengale Jepson, Mahonri Moriancumer Steele and Mary Ellen Jepson Steele.  She was admitted on 12 June 1933 by the then-president Cornelia S. Lund, of Salt Lake City, Utah. 

Emily's application shows her pride in her pioneer heritage as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  Her membership number 5972 indicates a rather small quorum in 1933, although today DUP boasts of over 88,000 members.  I was happy to show this old application to my fellow members here in the Yellow River Camp of the Gwinnett Company of DUP here in Georgia. 

Transcription:  My grandfather and his wife Catherine migrated from Scotland to Nauvoo July 8th 1845.  Came to Utah with the saints about 1847 where Elizabeth was born in Salt Lake City she being the first white child born in Utah.  Before coming to Utah three children had been born to John and Catherine the oldest Mary Campbell Steele, John and Margaret.  My father Mahonri was born May 1st 1849 at the corner of Liberty Park four other children were born in Utah, Susan, Ahna, Jane and Robert Henry making them the parents of nine children.  They went thru all the hardships of pioneering.  Brigham Young offered Grandfather a tract of land on the avenues in Salt Lake which at that time was hill and sage brush and looked useless and Grandfather was real insulted and told him if that was the best he could offer to keep it.  Later Brigham sent him to help settle Parowan and Toquerville, he was especially interested in Astronomy drawing charts for people and many of them came true.  Grandmother was engaged to the Kings guard before meeting Grandfather who was a fancy shoemaker and said she couldn't see how she ever married Grandfather but guessed she was to be tried thru all the trials she had to encounter.  She was a lovely woman and mother, her health was never very good and she died in Toquerville June 16, 1889.  Grandfather lived 14 years longer than Grandma. 

Emily and Alvin Jensen's Favorite Songs of their Era

Emily Steele Jensen was a singer and often performed at funerals and weddings, and other public venues as needed.  At home, she taught her children to sing the songs of the day, as well as hymns of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  Some of the fun songs she probably learned in her youth became her favorites, as passed on to her descendants.  'The Little Black Mustache' song was one of her favorites, a song about love, charms, looks and disappointments.  This lyric sheet is among the papers passed on to her posterity.

'The Little Black Mustache' was written in 1881 by James E. Dow, and it remained popular into the 1920's.  (

You can see the sheet music for 'The Little Black Mustache' song and hear a woman sing it at this website:  Little Black Mustache song - Missouri State Archives

Another family favorite that is still sung at reunions is 'Another Perfect Day Has Passed Away' written by Clarence Gaskill in 1933. No online free music is found, but the old sheet music can be purchased on 

Another song of warning titled 'Don't Wear Your Heart on your Sleeve' hits close to the heart.  It was written by Edward B. Marks and put to music by Joseph W. Stern in 1901.  You can see the sheet music to it here:  Don't Wear Your Heart on your Sleeve - Indiana State

The 2 part round, 'We're on the Upward Trail' is now sung by children's groups and Cub Scouts.  You can find the music in the 2009 Cub Scout Songbook on pg. 73.

I remember my grandpa Garth and his brothers harmonizing beautifully as they sang 'Tumbling Tumbleweeds by Bob Dolan and the Sons of the Pioneers (1930).  You can find the chording here:  Tumbling Tumbleweeds Chords

'My Mother Was a Lady' is another warning song, similar to the others.  A country singer recently recorded it, although it was written in 1896 (another song by Marks and Stern.)    You can see the sheet music here:  My Mother Was a Lady - Mississippi State 

The simple song 'Down in the Valley' is a traditional American song, recorded as early as 1909.  It's been recorded by many people and is still sung at various settings.  Simple piano music to it can be found here:  Down in the Valley - simple

More verses to 'Down in the Valley' are found on the Wikipedia page of that name.

These old time songs bring back the sounds of the old days in which Pop and Emily lived.  It's a blessing that they passed these favorites on to their descendants for us to enjoy, and experience their world through songs.  

Alvin Moroni Jensen Funeral program

This is the program from Alvin Moroni Jensen's funeral in 1978. 

Memories of Alvin and Emily Jensen by daughter Iona Jeanne

Jeanne wrote a wonderful addition to the histories of her parents Alvin and Emily Jensen in this memo to their posterity.  She also wrote up a nice reminder of how different it was to live in the 19th Century.  She appeals to family members to write down their memories before they are gone, and to maintain a family organization to stay connected.  It's a nice read I'm glad to share.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Emily Steele Jensen's Life Story

Alvin and Emily 


Alvin Moroni Jensen lived over 22 years after his beloved wife Emily died.  He used that time to do genealogy work.  As part of preserving his heritage, he wrote his autobiography and this biography of his dear wife Emily.  In it, his love for Emily is clear.  This copy was typed from legal size to 8 1/2 x 11 by Alvin and Emily's son Garth.


I wanted to add an account sent to me by Emily's granddaughter Darla Jensen Pearce.  She shares her experience with the death of her Grandmother Emily Steele Jensen.

When Grandma Emily died on August 10, 1955, I was eleven years old and she hadn't been sick for a day in her life.  The night before she died, they wouldn't let us see her because she had been to the doctor and wasn't feeling good.  I told Joanie, my cousin [Mack's daughter] who lived next door to us and she came with me to see what we could see.  The little house was all lit up because it was so dark outside.  We had a perfect view peeking in the front window.  There was my grandmother throwing up in an old can from the kitchen and Ken was bending over her.  I told Joanie that this must be real serious and that we should pray to our Heavenly Father, so she would be okay.  Joanie wasn't a Mormon, did not believe in prayer but she was also alarmed at the way Grandma looked, so pale and so sickly.  So these two little girls knelt down in the patio and I said the prayer.  I prayed that Grandma would live and be healthy again.  A small child's prayer.  At five o'clock the next morning, my Dad woke us all up in our beds.  He said, "Grandma's dead and you only have a few minutes to say goodbye to her before the paramedics come."  So as a family we all trooped over in our PJ's and saw her lying in her bed, so still.  Grandpa had placed a board under the mattress the night before when she complained of not being able to breathe.  He thought if she was lifted up, she could breathe easier but she didn't.  Ken had just finished giving her CPR and it was all over.  Only the funeral was left and she was gone.  Gary, Blaine, Sandi, Joanie and I drove to the cemetery in Uncle Paul's bright orange convertible.  That was the only bearable part of that day.  Over a hundred cars followed the hearse winding up to Glen Haven where all of our loved ones are now buried.  Grandma Emily was the first.  I remember straining to turn around and watch all the cars come up that winding road one after another.  Who could have guessed how many people loved her?  I was so surprised.  Through the years, Uncle Kenny would take his fire truck up there and send a big spray of water on the thirsty ground to make sure the grass stayed green on our loved ones graves.  He did this over the years up until they moved to Nevada.  It's like we owned that place, so many relatives are [now] buried there.  (Darla Jensen Pearce, email to Melanie Johnson, January 3, 2005, p. 3)

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Alvin Moroni Jensen's Book of Remembrance

Pop (Alvin Moroni Jensen) made several Books of Remembrance for his grandchildren in the 1970's.  Using an Exacto knife and ruler, copies of photos and documents and his index finger on an old typewriter, Pop created these books to pass on his genealogy to his grandchildren.  It must have taken months!  Each book is an original, complete with hatch marks to guide his Exacto knife and tape holding each photo inside the openings he made.  In them we can see what Pop valued, what he wished to pass on to the next generation.  Posted here find the contents of the Book Pop gave my dad Gary Alvin Jensen, ordered as closely as possible as they were in the cardboard book. 

The typed inscription on the inside cover of the green Book of Remembrance.
 The first page is a purchased sheet titled "Our Married Life."  Pop had taped a photo of the Manti temple on it, where he and Emily were married.  Genealogists used these purchased sheets to separate chapters in these 8.5 x 14 Legal sized Books of Remembrance.
Marriage Certificate for Alvin Moroni Jensen and Emily Steele.
Certificate reads, "Alvin M Jensen of Circleville and Emily Steele of Panguitch, married at Manti City on 3rd October 1906.  Witnesses-- Hans Westenskow and Azariah Smith, performed by Lewis Anderson, Elder.  The marriage certificate is a Xerox copy, a new tool for genealogists in the 1970's.  The image has degraded considerably because the ink had fused with the plastic cover sheet inside. 

The next sheet, another purchased one reads, "Sacred Memories." 
Pictorial life story of Emily Steele Jensen

Pictorial Life of Alvin Moroni Jensen

Homes Pop and Emily resided.  Bottom photo is dated December 1975.

Homes Pop and Emily resided.  Top photo is also dated December 1975.
Tribute page to Emily, thanking her for raising an honorable family.  Photo in center is Emily, side photos are greeting cards.  Colorful stickers adorn the page.

 Chapter heading "Our Children."
Emily Steele Jensen's funeral program, headstone and a nice photo taken just before her death.
  Chapter heading "Our Families." 
Picture Family Group Sheet of Alvin Moroni Jensen and Emily Steele Jensen's family.

Golden Wedding Anniversary of Mahonri Moriancumer And Emily Bunker Steele

Picture Story of Mahonri Moriancumer Steele and first wife Emily Bunker Steele

Emily Steele's ancestry

Pictorial History of Mahonri Moriancumer and plural wife Mary Ellen Jepson Steele

This is another chapter heading page titled 'Ancestry.'
 This chapter heading, "Ancestry" is included because it shows a display board loaded with photos of ancestors that Pop hung in his small home.  Those photos were passed on to his son Garth who also hung them proudly in his home.
Garth Peder Jensen's ancestry

This sheet, showing the family of John Steele Jr and Catherine Campbell Steele was printed professionally.

Families of Mahonri Moriancumer Steele by Emily Bunker, left and Mary Ellen Jepson, right.  Professionally printed.

Photos of Ane Jacobsen and Jorgen Peder Jensen, parents of Alvin Moroni Jensen

Important buildings in the lifes of Ane and Jorgen Jensen-- the Endowment house in Salt Lake City, the first chapel in Parowan and the St. George Temple.
The reverse of the center photo of the Parowan meetinghouse reads, "First LDS Meetinghouse in Parowan, Utah.  Jorgen Peder Jensen attended services here while living in Parowan, Utah.  He also helped to build it.  It has been preserved by the Daughters of Utah Pioneers as a monument to the saints who helped settle Parowan."
Close up photos of Mary Ellen Jepson and Mahonri Moriancumer Steele

An explanation of why the St. George temple was significant to Jorgen Peder Jensen, Mahonri Moriancumer Steele and Mary Ellen Jepson.

Picture family group sheet of Jorgen Peder Jensen and Ane Jacobsen Jensen

Home and family photos of the Jorgen Jensen family
Photos of Mahonri Moriancumer Steele and his wives and children.
Family portrait of the Mahonri M. Steele Sr. Family, taken about 1897 (my guess.) 

Certificate presented to Pop when he was 85 years old. 

The Reseda building which Pop maintained as Custodian for nearly 20 years.

A congratulations note from Gerald R. Ford, United States President commemorating Pop's 90th birthday 3 February 1975. 

A pedigree chart showing the descendancy of Adam and Eve to the Twelve Tribes of Israel
 Several letters and histories are included.  This letter from Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints President Wilford Woodruff to John Steele Jr. acknowledged that his daughter, Young Elizabeth Steele, was the first white child born in the State of Utah.

 Another letter penned by President Brigham Young discussed the nature of ore samples that John Steele Jr. had been sending to church headquarters in Salt Lake City for analysis.

 Additional items included in the book of remembrance, not included here:
Excerpts from John Steele Jr. diary "Life in the Valley 1847-1850"
Patriarchal Blessings to Emily Steele Jensen and Alvin Moroni Jensen
Letter from Wilford Woodruff to John Steele Jr about a particular family marriage.