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Without Purse or Scrip in Texas: 18 May – 2 June 1900

By: Ardis E. Parshall - March 25, 2012

(Previous installment)

Friday, May 18, 1900

We did not hear the first bell ring so we were late for breakfast but they went ahead and then they fixed us a place. It was about 5 a.m. The weather was cloudy. At 6 a.m. we left them, going to the post office where we posted some mail. Then we started through the country to Itasca. The roads were awful crooked. Sometimes we had to go on three sides of a man’s farm to get around. We rested several times; got to Itasca in good time, went out a ways. We put in 14-1/2 hours of walking without any dinner. Walked about 26 miles. It was quite warm. Did not get in until half past 8. Were refused 4 times but two of them had reasonable excuses as their wives were in a critical condition. We rested very good.

Saturday, May 19, 1900 (Woodberry, Hill Co.)

We rested very good. Arose early and had a good breakfast. The weather was cloudy. We went into Woodberry, from there through the timber to Huren where we thought we would find out where the elders were laboring, but they had not been there so we started north, cut through fields to where they had canvassed. While going through we came to a creek and we had nearly all the dewberries we wanted. We came to one of their old friends where they had stayed two nights. It looked very much like rain so they asked us to stay over with them. So I spent my 21st birthday, wandering over old Texas hunting for the elders. I was tired and footsore. We were treated fine.

Sunday, May 20, 1900

It rained nearly all night and was awful cloudy when we got up. We ate a fine breakfast, after which we showed the folks our photos and had a shave. We then started on to find the elders as we heard that they were going to hold meeting right close. We got lost once and walked away off from our road but finally got all right again. We visited the convict farm, found that the elders had gone down the river to Mt. Graham where we found them with a Mormon elder that had been ordained by Pres. Jack in the northern part of the state. Elder Chandler and I stayed with him and had a good night’s rest. It was sprinkling when we went to bed.

Monday, May 21, 1900

The weather was quite cloudy. We stayed overnight with Bro. B.E. Roberts, a Mormon elder. He was a fine young man; was baptized by Samuel H. Wells of St. George. After bidding them goodby, we all went down the road a ways, then going out to one side in the woods, we talked together for some time, then holding prayers. We separated and Elder Chandler and myself went toward Huren while the other two revisited. We went up; to one preacher, introduced ourselves, and he said that was all he wanted and hit his mules and went on. We ate all the dew berries we could a while before dark.

Tuesday, May 22, 1900

The weather was still cloudy and looked very much like it would rain. We stayed with Mr. Baker who treated us the best kind. After breakfast we came into town, found the trustees and got permission to preach in the schoolhouse. We then began canvassing and announcing the meeting through the community. At dinner time we stopped into Smiths’ where we got our dinner. Then, going on, we came back into town to the store. We had a long talk with him and he had everything in the Bible spiritualized. We then came to the schoolhouse where we wrote a letter and stayed until meeting time. We had quite a large crowd out. I presided and Elder Chandler took up all the time. There was a preacher there taking notes. After meeting the people all went home and left us at the house. We had a word of prayer and in a few moments a man came and took us home. We slept in a storm house.

Wednesday, May 23, 1900

We rested fine. The man called us for breakfast. His name was E.F. Hall. We then went over to the schoolhouse where we stayed until 11 a.m. Then we walked to the store where we waited until the mail came. I received three letters, two from home and one from Pres. Hunsaker. As we did not have anything to do we strolled out of town about a mile and laid under a tree until night. Then coming back to the schoolhouse, we waited for our meeting. In a little while the people began to come in. We had quite a large crowd. There was a Campbellite preacher out and he tried his best to get a debate but we would not give him any chance. They treated us a little better than the night before. One of the families took us home.

Thursday, May 24, 1900

We went all day without any dinner or supper and when we were called up to breakfast, we made up for lost time. When we went to bed there was but one little cloud in the west and in a little while it was raining and blowing to beat time. The roads were awful muddy to travel, but we did not stop. We walked about 12 miles to Bro. Smith’s, where we found the elders. I wrote a letter and fixed my shoe. After supper we went out to the tank and had a wash, then came back and sang songs until bed time. My eyes were sore so Sis. Smith gave me some water.

Friday, May 25, 1900

the weather was awful cloudy and warm. When we bid the folks goodby, we left them with tears in their eyes. The elders went out a little ways with us, then having prayers we left them, starting for Limestone County. We walked through Woodberry to Hillsboro where we posted our mail. We also bought us a couple of oranges. We took the railroad for about 9 miles then turning to the left, we went out to Mr. Burnett, one of the elders’ friends where we stayed overnight. Had a good rest.

Saturday, May 26, 1900

The family treated us fine and as they wanted to go to work early, we thanked them for their kindness and went on our journey. We had gone about 4 miles when it began raining so we called into a house and got under shelter for half an hour until it stopped. The roads were quite slippery but we went along the best we could. At 1 p.m. we stopped at a branch and had a wash, then going on to Mt. Calm. There a young man was going our way so he asked us to get in a ride with him. When we left him he gave us a nickel apiece. We went to one of the elders’ friends, but on introducing ourselves to him, we found that he had turned traitor against us. It was raining so we did not have time to talk with him. We came to Mr. Green’s who kindly took us in and treated us the best kind.

Sunday, May 27, 1900

It rained nearly all night. The roads would have been awful muddy if we had of tried to travel. So we thought we would lay over most of the day. Bro. Green gave us both a good shave. I wrote a letter home to my folks. I was not feeling very good as I had an awful bad cold. Did not feel much like traveling. But as we had a long walk to make Monday we thought best to make a little ways that night. We made about 7 miles and were a ways after dark before we got in. Were refused 6 times. But the Lord softened one man’s heart so he took us in. It was late before we got to bed as the room we were to sleep in there was a young couple sparking.

Monday, May 28, 1900

The family we stayed with treated us very cool. I did not rest very well as my breast and throat were all stopped up. We did not have all we wanted to eat as the rest just swallowed a bite and away they went. We had a nice talk with them although they said they didn’t want to hear any of our doctrine. We rested several times on the road. Got to Groesbeck at 3 o’clock where I found 8 letters for me. We then went down a ways where we read them. Then we went on to Bro. Ingram’s where we reached a little before sunset. I was ready to stop as I was nearly sick but I got over 26 miles if I did feel bad. The brother was glad to see us, but his wife treated us very cool, would not hardly speak.

Tuesday, May 29, 1900

The weather was quite cloudy when we got up. We were intending to go on after dinner but Bro. Ingram wanted us to stay with him until morning and preach to the people so we decided to do so. We visited among the people and asked them all to come out and hear what we had to say, but when time came there wasn’t a soul came out. They didn’t seem to be interested in Mormonism. We went back to Bro. Ingram’s where we rested fine, although we hated to be with him so much on account of his wife.

Wednesday, May 30, 1900

The sky was very cloudy. We were intending to start after breakfast but it started to thunder and rain and came down awful hard for a while. So we stayed until after dinner when we started. But the roads were awfully muddy. We went into Groesbeck where we posted our mail, then going north toward Prairie Grove we walked about six miles when we came to Bro. Cox’s place, one of the saints, where we stayed overnight. They were glad to see us and we had a good time, singing songs and talking until bedtime when we retired.

Thursday, May 31, 1900

We rested fine during the night. After eating breakfast Bro. Gant came along and we had a short talk with him. Then I went out on the branch where we picked some blackberries, which Sister Cox made into a pie for dinner. It was certainly fine. We then had a shave. Then walked over to Bro. Gant’s, where we spent the evening talking with the sister. I also wrote a letter to Pearl P. At night the menfolks came in and we had a good time talking until bedtime. Then holding prayers we retired to rest for the night.

Friday, June 1, 1900

The weather was still cloudy and warm. After breakfast I went out into the field with Bro. Gant but he did not have enough work to keep his boys so there wasn’t anything for me to do. I then went into a schoolhouse where I slept for nearly two hours. After this I found some wild plums which were very good. About 3 p.m. a few clouds gathered and in a few minutes it was raining. It first came fro the south and turned around to the north. I cut off one of the boy’s hair, then eating supper we talked until bedtime. It was still raining.

Saturday, June 2, 1900

The rain stopped during the night but was still warm and cloudy when we got up. After breakfast I talked with Bro. Gant until he was ready to start for town. I then went out into the woods to the strawberry patch where I picked some berries. I did not get very many so I ate what I had. We then ate dinner, after which I went down to the branch where I washed out my shirt then took a bath. I came back to the house where we ate wild plums and had a shave. We talked until bedtime about the Indians then holding prayers we retired to rest.

(To be continued)



4 Comments »

  1. I am guessing that the term “storm house” must have been some kind of tornado shelter.

    Plus the bed not being available because of a young couple “sparking” was noteworthy.

    Comment by kevinf — March 26, 2012 @ 1:55 pm

  2. What does “down to the branch” mean?

    Comment by Carol — March 26, 2012 @ 8:19 pm

  3. A “branch” is a small stream in the South.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 26, 2012 @ 9:38 pm

  4. Ah. Thank you. Like a “crick” in Utah, I guess.

    Comment by Carol — March 27, 2012 @ 8:44 am

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