My mother, Annie Eliza Berry, was born August 21, 1865, in Salt Lake City, Utah. She was quite a jolly person. My dad, Thomas Clark Day, was born August 14, 1859, in Spanish Fork, Utah. He was easy to get along with.
All my grandparents were from England. My dad's mother came in the first Handcart Company. They walked all the way from Iowa City to Salt Lake Valley, from June to September. A chart showing the route was in the center section of the Children's Friend Magazine in 1989.
My mother was 45 years old when I was born. She was a good mother..also very opinionated. She could do many things..made quilts, carded the wool for batts, made over clothes to wear, made strong 11-strand braided rugs, wove enough carpets to cover the floors, with straw for the padding. She spun her own yarn, knit our stockings and sweaters, made cottage cheese and cheddar cheese, made homemade laundry soap. She also made a rock room to keep food in as it would keep cool like a refrigerator. This was done by packing cold water 1/4 mile before the sun came up and then sprinkling the cold water around in the rock room. My mother taught us to tell weeds from plants when we were little.
I didn't get up when she called me one morning so she came with a bucket of cold water and dumped it all over me. I was so mad I said, "I'll stay here until I get dry". She said, "You won't get dry in that bed, kid!" I have never layed in bed since.
My mother was the best Sunday School teacher. I went to her class. She explained all the subjects. There was nothing she wouldn't try to do. My mother went to the third grade and read stories of the Bible and Wild West stories to the neighbor children and to us.
She got up at 4 or 5 in the morning and worked until midnight. We had coal oil lamps or candles. We had wood heat in the house and during the night it would get so cold in the house that it would freeze the house plants in the wintertime. My mother was a hard worker and she didn't plan on doing the work while we stayed in bed. She made a good breakfast for us before we went to school. We walked 2 1/2 miles one way and did the chores before we went and when we got home.
My brother, Benjamin, died when he was 19, of ruptured appendix and my brother, Alma, died when he was 13. The doctor didn't know what to do for him. My mother cried continually. It came Christmas time, and she begged my brother, Willard, to take her to the cemetery as she wanted to spend the day with them. He didn't want to say yes or no. Benjamin had had $15.00 they were saving to buy a calf, and when it got bigger they had planned to sell it and buy head stones for their graves. One day my mother was washing on the wash board and crying because she wanted to go to the cemetery. She stopped and said to me, "Did you hear anything?" I said, "No". She said Alma spoke to her and said, "Why do you want to go there when we are not there?" Then she thought what was she going to do for Christmas. My brother, Benjamin, said, "Take my money Mother." So she did, and got Christmas gifts for the family.
My mother became ill and we all went to see her. My brother, George, said, "Who will have a cup of coffee with me?" I said I would. I got the sugar and cream stirred in and my mother said, "Zelma, I don't want you to drink it." I didn't and that was the last time I ever did. These were the last words my mother said to me.
My mother seemed to look like an angel that day. The next day we were called and told she had died. My sister, Fannie, and Heber's wife, Lovisa, layed her out because there were no mortuaries. She died February 3, 1928, in Montwell, Utah. The snow was high when they took her to Mountain Home, Utah to bury her. The next morning Uncle John Rowley and Heber was let known the grave was dug in the roadway and that her Temple apron strings and veil were not on right. As my mother was large, Fannie and Lovisa had just tucked the apron strings around her. They went back up to Mountain Home to get things right. It was snowing when they opened the casket and right then the snow stopped where they were at. I was ill and didn't go up there with them.
My mother's dad, John Francis Berry, was the only grandparent I knew. He was a good worker with wood. He did the work on the Salt Lake City Tabernacle and on the Salt Lake City Temple grounds. He helped build the Temple, too. His wife told the Bishop that he drank tea. The Bishop said, "The wicked man!" Why don't you leave him and marry me?" She told her husband about this. He said, "What do you think?" She said, "He's in charge." The next morning he was gone and she never saw him again. He came to help build a home in Circleville, Utah, when I was 3 or 4 years old.
My grandfather, Thomas Day, was married to Mary Ann Taphouse, and she couldn't have children. Charlotte Clark was working in their home for them. Mary Ann said Charlotte could marry Thomas if she could have their first child. This was done. The first child was Thomas Clark Day, my Father. He told me if Mary Ann had not died he would have been able to get a good education.
My dad also had a hard life. When he was very young, his dad took him to herd sheep. He didn't see his mother or any white people for 9 months. His dad married another woman with children, and they would spit on him and treated him mean. They lived on the Muddies where there were lots of Indians. My father didn't get any schooling. A girl wrote to him when he was 21 so he went to school to learn to read and write. Whatever he did it didn't please my mother, so he herded sheep most of his life. We weren't taught to love him so we didn't show love for him. I've felt very sorry...wished a hundred times things were better.
My dad was honest, hard working, and easy to get along with. He helped build Moon Lake when they had wheel barrows, picks and shovels only. I have a picture of my dad melting snow for the sheep. I loved him so much. My dad died, July 6, 1946, in Salt Lake City, Utah. He was 85 years old and died from a prostrate operation.