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Without Purse or Scrip in Texas: 11 October – 23 October 1901

By: Ardis E. Parshall - November 11, 2012

(Previous installment)

Friday, October 11, 1901

After breakfast we had a shave before leaving the family. When we went to bid the man goodby, he acted as though we were going to pay him. He was very ignorant. We walked into town. Left our grips at a store and began our work as usual. Had a short talk with a man who had met the Prophet Joseph, Sidney Rigdon, Orson Hyde, and several other of the beloved brethren. He also heard them speak in a conference that he attended in his young days. After leaving his place, it began raining. We were invited into another place where I talked with a young lady until it was over. By 12 p.m. we had consummated our work in Gatesville. We bought a nickel’s worth of peanuts and a coconut for our dinner. Waited until after the mail came in, but there was none for us. We then walked down the railroad into the country. Stopped and rested until time to seek for entertainment. We walked until 7 p.m. Before we found a place we could stay at. Partook of a nice supper and talked upon the gospel until bedtime. They would get the best of Elder Pierce but they soon shut up when I started in. Retired. Good bed.

Saturday, October 12, 1901

When I arose I was feeling quite miserable with a cold. My lungs were so tight that I could hardly breathe. After partaking of a hearty breakfast and talking with the folks until 8 a.m., we bid them goodby and were on our way. Visited all of the families around the Straws post office and then went into the woods, where we read until 10 a.m. Continuing, we walked on. The houses were a long ways apart. At noon we came to Bro. R.R. Powell where we talked with him for some time upon the gospel. Also had a nice dinner at his place. Leaving his place, we came to an old school house where we sat and read for some time. It was getting time to seek for entertainment, so we started out. Asked at 4 places but they were either sick or had company. At 7:30 we came to Mr. King’s, where we were granted the privilege of remaining. Did not have any supper. Before retiring, the kind sister fixed me a rag so that I could put it on my breast to loosen my cold. Fine bed. Quite cold. Slept fine.

Sunday, October 13, 1901

My cold was not much better when I arose. There was a stiff cold north wind a-blowing. After breakfast we thought we would go on, but the old sister was so kind and talked so nice that I asked her for the privilege of remaining over the Sabbath as we did not like to travel on the Lord’s Day. She said that we were perfectly welcome, and all went well. I wrote a letter to my folks. Several of the neighbors came in for dinner and one of the men was inclined to be slurring. I gave him to understand that I was as familiar with our people as he was, so he would not say much to me, but would keep talking to Elder Pierce and he would let him have his own way.

At noon we partook of a nice dinner. Sat and talked with the folks until 4:30 p.m., when the young man of the place said that he had kept us as long as he could. He no doubt had been influenced by some of the dirty scoundrels of the community. We thanked them and took our departure. As it was nearly night, we began seeking for a place to tarry. The second place, Bro. McClanahan, took us in and treated us fine. Nice supper. Talked on the gospel until 9 p.m. Hard to show him anything. He was a missionary Baptist. We got along all right and had a good time. Before retiring they gave me some medicine for my cold.

Monday, October 14, 1901

My cold was about the same. Soon after breakfast we were on our way. Stopped in the old school house where we wrote a letter to each office; made out our reports, and then I left Elder Pierce there while I went two miles to Gatesville to post them. I had not walked far until a man came along in a buggy and asked me to ride with him. Of course he wanted to know my business and that brought on a conversation. He was somewhat prejudiced to our people. I gave him a pamphlet and he said that he would read it. I got back to Elder Pierce at 11:25 and we remained in the house until nearly 2 p.m. without any dinner. Visited several families. Stayed over night with Bro. Cox. He was a cripple. Fell off from a house and broke his hip three years ago and had been in bed ever since. He was 83 years of age. We talked with them upon the gospel until 9:30 p.m. Held prayers. I was mouth. Retired to rest. Good bed.

Tuesday, October 15, 1901

My cold was some better when I arose. Ate a hearty breakfast, after which we talked for a while and then bid the folks goodby. They invited us back any time we are through the country. The houses were a long ways apart. At noon we came to Mr. Myers’, who gave us a nice dinner. I don’t think he wanted to but we stood and talked until he invited us in. Continuing, we called on Mr. White, one of the deacons of the Baptist church, to get his permission to preach in their tabernacle. He was inclined to be prejudiced and tried to make a fight but I soon shut him up and, after talking for a while, he gave his consent providing it was agreeable with the other deacon. We then went and saw the other one, Mr. Lawrence. He was afraid the people would not sanction us preaching in their house and he said that he would let us know in the morning as he wanted to confer with Mr. White about it. I told him that we wanted to know tonight. “Well,” he says, “you can preach one night and then we will stop you if your teachings don’t suit us.” We went on, announcing our meeting. Asked a doctor for entertainment. He could not keep us on account of our beliefs. The next house, Mr. Folsom, took us in and treated us fine. Talked until 9:30 p.m. Retired. Good bed.

Wednesday, October 16, 1901

We arose quite early as the brother had to get to his store. As soon as time came, we were on our way rejoicing, visiting the families, and norating our meeting. Stopped on the Leon River. Had a shave and Elder Pierce took a bath. Continuing, we began looking out for a place for dinner. Came to Bro. Water’s. We sold him two books and then asked him for a bite of dinner, which was willingly given unto us. It consisted of biscuits and bacon. They were very poor and had but little pride about them in keeping things clean. We returned to the tabernacle where we were intending to wait until preaching time. I wrote a card for more books. Elder Pierce took it to the office and while there the deacon came up and told him that we could not preach in their house. They said they had read over the pamphlets and they teach heresy, so we were disappointed again. At 5 p.m. we started out to get entertainment. Stopped with Bro. Lemmonte. Nice supper. Talked with them until bed time. They professed to believe in the Bible but would deny what we told them, yet it was there.

Thursday, October 17, 1901

We arose very early. At breakfast before 6 o’clock as the gentleman was going to the gin and wanted to get there first if possible. Before sunrise we started out. Stopped in the woods for a good while. Continuing, the second house we came to a missionary Baptist preacher by the name of Jones. We were soon into a heavy argument. He began calling our beloved prophet “Joe Smith.” I corrected him and said that his name is Joseph. “Well, I can call him anything I want.”
“Yes, and it is my duty to correct you and then if you continue, it will be you and your God for it.” There was no reason to the old codger. Met another old man. He said that he knew more about our people than we did. I said “I wouldn’t wonder but what I could tell you many things that you never heard of yet.” At noon we wanted some dinner. Called at a place. Were invited in. Elder Pierce began talking to him. In a moment he asked what we had come around him for. “Why don’t you go and get a house to preach in and then I will come and hear you.” He began talking about old Joe Smith. I kindly corrected him. We went on without our dinner. Stopped in an old house and rested for a while. Continuing, we walked over the mountain for about 4 miles without seeing a house. The first one we stopped and talked for about an hour. Began seeking for a place to tarry. Stayed with Bro. Music. Nice supper, beefsteak. Talked until bed time. Met a young man who had seen a number of elders in Tennessee. Retired.

Friday, October 18, 1901

I arose feeling well. Ate a hearty breakfast, beefsteak. Soon after, we were on our way. Stopped in the woods where we wrote our journals and had prayers. Continuing, we came to the school house where some men were at work repairing the building. We had no idea of preaching there but two of the trustees were there and they both said that we could preach without asking them. So we appointed a meeting for Saturday night. We then started for Gatesville after our mail. Elder Pierce stopped out this side two miles with the grips while I walked in. A man came along in a buggy and I rode part way. Found one letter from home bringing the good news that the folks were improving with the measles. Bought 10c of apples for our dinner. We spent the remainder of the day in the woods reading the newspapers. Were given entertainment by Bro. Painter. Fine supper. Talked with them on the gospel and Book of Mormon until bedtime. I got a tub and some water before retiring and had a nice bath.

Saturday, October 19, 1901

During the night the slats kept falling through every tine that I would turn over. Arose feeling well, ate breakfast. Put a shine on my shoes, and then began our labor. As we had no families to visit, we retired in the woods where we read for a while. Came to the school house. The men were still working there. At 11 a.m. Bro. Summers, the Baptist preacher, came in along with a few people. They held meeting. The young man tried to preach but was a poor hand at it. We came home with Bro. J.W. Franks. Partook of a nice dinner, and spent the evening with them. I washed our clothes, had a shave, at supper, and then returned to the school house to fill our appointment. There were about 20 people present. I presided. Elder Pierce spoke 15 minutes, first upon all of the principles. I spoke 10 upon baptism. Sold 3 books after we were through. Came home with Bro. Franks.

Sunday, October 20, 1901

Two years from home. The weather was bright and clear when we arose. Partook of a hearty breakfast, after which we sat and talked until time to go to preaching. There were not a great many came out. At 11 a.m. it commenced and we listened to Bro. Summers, a Baptist, for about 10 minutes. His talk was not very interesting. His subject was Faith, but made a poor bit. We were invited home to dinner with Bro. Franks again, but as we had an appointment for 3 o’clock we decided to stay at the school house and read and write. Bro. Cotton and family brought their dinner with them and ate in the house where we were and nothing would do but we ate with them. I then wrote a letter to the folks. At 3 p.m. There was a nice crowd assembled. As I had a very bad cold, we had the people sing for us. Elder Pierce presided but I took up all of the time, speaking upon the Apostasy and Restoration for 55 minutes. Enjoyed a good spirit and the people all gave good attention. After meeting we had a short argument with the Baptist preacher, Bro. Summers. We soon put a damper on him and he began to get angry. Went home with Bro. Franks again where we had a good time until bed time. He showed us a pamphlet that the preacher had given him exposing our teaching. He also gave it tome.

October 21, 1901

We arose quite early. Soon after breakfast we bid the kind family goodby. Received a warm welcome to return. We went on our way rejoicing. Stopped by the side of the road and made out our reports. I then left Elder Pierce with the grips and walked into town, Gatesville, after our mail. Received word from Pa. The folks improving with the measles. Also a letter from my sister Mary. Returned. Started out to find a place for dinner. Came to Bro. Henry Joyner’s. Sold him a book and then he asked us in the house where we talked until dinner was ready. At 2 p.m. we continued our canvassing. Visited the State Reformatory. Had a long talk with one of the men who lived there. They had about 200 boys in the place. About half were black and half white. Leaving there, we began seeking for a place to tarry. The houses were a long ways apart. Visited two that there was nobody living in, and, of course, that made us late before we found a place. At 7 p.m. we came to Bro. Walker’s. After talking hard to him, we were granted the privilege of staying. He said that there were so many tramps traveling over the country that a person did not know whether they were clean or not. I assured him who we were. Ate supper, and then I talked with them until bed time. Held prayers. I was mouth.

Tuesday, October 22, 1901

Arose quite early. I was not feeling very well, as there seemed to be a lump on my breast and I was as sore as could be. After breakfast we bid the family goodby and were on our way visiting the families. Stopped in the woods a while, had prayers, and wrote our journals. Continuing, we sold a book to a man who was going to start for Oklahoma tomorrow. We came to the school house. I was feeling so miserable. The door was fastened tight so we raised the window and got in. I laid on the benches until dinner time. At with Mrs. J.O. Duncan and also had a long talk with them. They invited us to come back any time we were in the community. Visited several more families. Stayed over night with Bro. Daniels. He had read a great deal concerning our people from an enemy’s point of view so he was prejudiced. We talked with him until 9 p.m. Retired. I was feeling awful tired.

Wednesday, October 23, 1901

I was not feeling very well when I arose. Ate breakfast and then I asked Bro. Daniels for the privilege of preaching in the school house which was granted us. We then began visiting the families and norating our meeting. Stopped in the house where we read for a while. Continuing, we started out to find a kind family who would invite us in and give us something to eat. We found the desired place at one Bro. W.E. Holmes. Had a nice talk, and partook of a fine dinner. We finished all of the families in the community. Elder Pierce then walked to the post office after mail. We waited at the school house until 7:30 p.m. But no one came out owing to the blustery weather. We walked one and a half miles to Bro. Leighsblada, where I called him out. He was a Norwegian and when he came out, he said “What do you want? And who are you?” I said, “We are Mormon preachers called for the purpose of getting entertainment.” “What is that?” he says. I says, “It is a place to tarry over night.” “Well, we don’t call that entertainment. But,” he said, “come in, you shall have a bed.” In a minute things were soon prepared and we retired to a good bed.

(To be continued)



1 Comment »

  1. It seems that being sick is pretty common. I imagine the cold weather doesn’t help.

    Comment by Julia — November 12, 2012 @ 12:52 am

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