Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » Mormon History Coloring Book, 1923: December, “An Open Door to All”

Mormon History Coloring Book, 1923: December, “An Open Door to All”

By: Ardis E. Parshall - July 19, 2009

With the motto “Real Service Consists in Losing Self for the Good of Others,” the Primary lessons of 1923 focused on the theme of “An Open Door to All.” Most of the pictures published in the Children’s Friend that month for use as class visual aids demonstrate hospitality: visitors to a 1923 home, newly arriving immigrants in Church history, the introduction of foreign converts to a missionary’s family at home (in this case, the hospitality went both ways: the converts had hosted the missionary, and now the missionary’s family was hosting them), the welcome given to wagon companies arriving in the Salt Lake Valley, and — of particular interest to Keepa readers — the greeting of tourists at the Salt Lake Auto Camp.

The last picture, while departing somewhat from the theme of hospitality, is still interesting to those who read between the lines. In 1923, the 12- and 13-year-old girls (Seagull Girls) were still members of the children’s Primary, although their brothers of the same age were members of the teen/adult Mutual Improvement Association, due to the requirements of Scouting. This coloring book scene indicates some of the ways the Primary addressed the need of these girls to be treated as young adults rather than children: they engaged in organized service projects, planned their own activities, and learned how to be teachers themselves.


When Christmas time comes ’round each year
The children do their share,
To scatter cheer and happiness
At home and everywhere.

Mothers would not turn them out,
Those folk from distant lands,
They always gave the best they had,
And served with willing hands.

“Mother, dear, these folks have come
From far across the sea.
When I was on my mission
They were very kind to me.”

One brother was appointed
To welcome all who came,
No matter what their station
Or what their rank or name.

“A place to camp? Just drive right in;
The grounds, you see, are here.”
This is the city’s way to greet
And give the tourists cheer.

Seagull Girls know how to work
For service good and true,
They make supplies for Church and home
And teach the kiddies, too.



  1. Just in time for Sacrament Meeting, again. It’s “coloring with a message.” Thanks, Ardis! I love these.

    Comment by Hunter — July 19, 2009 @ 11:09 am

  2. How lovely to see another set of these beautiful line drawings.

    I just went back and read the discussion about the Auto Camp. That was really fun. Thanks for the link. :-)

    Comment by Researcher — July 19, 2009 @ 4:14 pm

  3. I love the little maid outfit on the one girl. Very cute.

    Awesome discovery as always.

    Comment by JonW — July 20, 2009 @ 11:52 pm

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