Sunday, January 25, 2015

Facts about Jesse N. Smith

Hello Wonderful family. Holidays are over. I'm sure everyone enjoyed the beauty of the season and the wonderful celebration of Christ who taught us that Love is the "summum bonum" (isn't this a great word). Its out of this spirit that we love to share with each other stories of our wonderful ancestors. Truly the hearts of the children are turned to their fathers.
I wanted to share 10 fascinating facts about Grandpa Jesse you may have not been aware of.
1. That your Grandfather Jesse is the youngest 1st cousin to Joseph Smith. Because of that, you are also Joseph’s 1st cousin (a few times removed).
2. He was the 1st Stake President in the Eastern Arizona Stake and 2nd Stake President in Arizona behind my wife’s (Angie) Great Great Grandfather Lot Smith who was the first.
3. When 12 years of age, Grandpa Jesse records in his journal he saw the bodies of Joseph and Hyrum being brought back from Carthage Jail into Nauvoo.
4. We calculate Grandpa Jesse has around 50,000- 60,000 descendants as he had 5 wives and 44 children, all who stayed active in the church.
5. His original home is still standing in Parowan he built but left in 1878 and his last home in Snowflake Arizona was almost completed when he passed away in 1906. They are both beautiful and fascinating museums.
6. Remember the fire in Provo that almost burned down the Tabernacle, Grandpa Jesse attended General Conference there when it was a brand new bldg. He commented in his Journal, “much pleased with the design of the building”
7. He kept a meticulous Journal and is a fascinating study of early Church history.
8. His father Silas Sr. and 2 year older brother John, died as a result of Missouri Persecutions. Albeit indirectly, stress and deprivation took its toll on both of them. We almost lost Grandpa Jesse as well.
9. Joseph Smith gave Grandpa Jesse a Book of Mormon when he was age 7 in which was inscribed “To my friend and kinsman, Jesse Nathaniel Smith, Joseph Smith, March 1842”. Jesse speaks of this in 1905 General Conference and added humorous anecdotes about this experience. It was lost for about 60 years but was found recently.
10. A man was assigned to shoot Grandpa Jesse for political gain. His life was almost taken several times but the Lord preserved him for he had much to accomplish, part of this being YOU.
Do you have any favorite or interesting stories to share?
Your Cousin

Sunday, January 11, 2015

A poem about Dad from his brother Chet

By Chester R. Richardson

He was born a twin in the early fall,
Exactly where and when I sure don't recall.

My first memory of him was back on the old place,
Where we milked lots of cows and it was always a race.

We all slept together at the end of the house,
In one great big room and sometimes next to a mouse.

Mother would sometimes come in clean after us now and then,
She had a name for the room she called it the bullpen.

There were chores every day and plenty of work,
From our daily duties we knew we must not shirk.

When I would try to be lazy and stop work I would try,
I got a kick in the pants and sometimes I’d cry.

When the deer hunt came from the rest he would part,
To kill anything was just not in his heart.

I remember church and school plays he put on a good act,
His lines and his part, well they were always exact.

My favorite skit a clown he could do,
He would walk all around a piece of gum on his shoe.

He would pull off the gum and shake it to and fro,
At last after a while into his mouth it would go.

One summer I recall out on the Lordsburg flat,
He worked for Erwin and he wore a big hat.

He must prepare this new land and put in a good crop,
Remove the cactus and grass from bottom to the top.

It was a big job but he took it in stride,
He got a good crop, all kidding aside.

I visited him once a big cat he was driving,
Digging up the ground, on tomato soup he was surviving.

The rows were so straight and very very long,
As far as you could see, I could find nothing wrong.

I slept in his house well, I guess I did goof,
It was a shack 6 foot square with a big hole in the roof.

During the night a big storm you can bet,
Came right through that hole and got us all wet.

Jay climbed on the roof and covered the hole,
Even though we were wet we slept like a mole.

He went to college with his toothbrush and comb,
New Mexico Western it was not far from home.

He worked and worked and studied all the day long,
Took lessons on the piano rustle of spring became his song.

A two year adventure a special mission to the Jews,
He taught them the gospel, the message of good news.

Uncle Sam extended a call, into the military he went,
At Ft. Bliss in El Paso, where most of the time was spent.

He was afraid before he went, that soon he would be dead,
Because one day he told me, something was rattling in his head.

But the exercise was good, he came back healthy and strong,
So the time that he spent there, must not have been wrong.

Another thing happened, that was very good,
They put in his mind, to help people chew their food.

Then it was off to dental school, with all its worries and fears,
Then they put him in prison, to finish his years.

Then he came to South Phoenix, to set up his dig,
It seemed in all his new work, I was his little testing pig.

He has drilled and filled, and washed and scrubbed,
If the truth were told, every minute he loved.

He taught all his kids, as they worked by his side,
To do what is right, and in the lord always confide.

He has taught many a class, important lessons of light,
Always do your best, and above all do what is right

He was on the high council, to work with stake men,
To visit the wards, and give a talk now and then.

Now he works with the bishop, to counsel and pray,
And help others kids, to go the right way.

Lavona and Jay they make quite a team,
The nest is near empty, except Amy and Dean.

America West flies full to the brim,
Lavona makes sure that the tickets are in.

We come to the end and now the best part,
We love you dear brother from the bottom of our heart.

From Chester Richardson - July 1997