Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » Without Purse or Scrip in Texas: 7 February – 20 February 1902

Without Purse or Scrip in Texas: 7 February – 20 February 1902

By: Ardis E. Parshall - January 20, 2013

(Previous installment)

Friday, February 7, 1902

At Simpson Hotel, Hiko, Texas. We arose after having a good night’s rest. Ate a fine breakfast and then paid the proprietor 75c for our lodging and came downtown to the post office, but were disappointed as we did not receive any mail. We then walked down to the depot and waited until the train came in at 11:50 a.m. There was no mail came in for us. Dinner time had come so we went to the restaurant and ordered a 15c steak. When it came it was a fine one. After getting through, we stepped up to pay our bill and he said our steak was an extra good one and wanted 20c for it, but we did not propose to pay for his mistake. We then took our departure from the town.

Came west toward Stephensville, Erath County. Walked 10-1/2 miles through the mud. Night came on. I asked Bro. J.R. Preston for entertainment and we were granted the privilege of remaining over night. Were given a nice supper, sausage, Irish potatoes, pickles, blackberries, and pear preserves. This over, we had a nice conversation on different subjects of the gospel. At 9 p.m. we retired. Were given a fine bed. Rested fine.

Saturday, February 8, 1901

We arose quite early. Had a good breakfast, also talked for a while and then bid the kind family goodby and were on our way again. Walked about six miles when along came a man in a wagon and we asked for a ride into town. At 11 a.m. we arrived at Stephensville. Called at the post office. One letter from Elder Craner. Also one from Pres. Duffin stating that I had been released from missionary labors here in the state of Texas. We then got a 15c steak and found the direction to Lingleville, a distance of 12 miles. We had just walked but about a mile when a man came along and gave us a ride for 7 miles. It was very cold but we managed to stand it as we were tired of walking. After leaving this kind brother, we walked two miles into Lingleville. Found there a card from Elders Holyoak and Pierce stating where we would find them. Came east into the Shelby District but did not find them. Night came on. We asked Bro. G.W. More, a Campbellite, for entertainment. After a good supper our conversation began. I did most of the talking. Found the old man very unreasonable. At last we told him we wouldn’t talk any more. Retired at 10 p.m.

Sunday, February 9, 1902

After a good night’s rest, we arose again. After breakfast while Elder Barber was writing journal, I got into another argument with the old brother on the uses of tobacco. He said that such filthy habits were no sin in the sight of God. I tore him up for a while. We again started on our way, hunting for the elders. Asked at several houses but got but little information. We heard where they had been the forepart of the week. After walking hard all morning, we came to Bro. J.M. Anderson’s where we were given a fine dinner, after which we continued on about 3 miles to Bro. Carlton’s, where the elders had eaten dinner yesterday. We were then tired, so I asked for entertainment and were privileged to stay. Talked for a while. Wrote our journals. Two men came in. Sold them two books. Ate a hearty supper. Spent a very pleasant evening chatting upon various subjects. Good bed.

Monday, February 10, 1902

We arose quite early. Soon after breakfast we took our departure for Lingleville. As we were going into the town, we met Elders Pierce and Holyoak. After a short conversation, we all walked through the town and down about a mile into the woods where we spent the day with the elders. At 12 p.m., Elder Pierce came back to the burg and bought some cheese, crackers, and candy for lunch. Also borrowed $5.00 from the postmaster, T.J. Simer, for us to pay our way on the railroad to Italy, Texas. He left his watch to secure it. As we had a good ways to walk, at 3 p.m. we bid the brethren goodby and started for Stephensville. Walked about 6 miles. Night came on. We were given entertainment by Bro. A.C. McAllister. Treated fine. Nice supper. Good bed.

Tuesday, February 11, 1902

Arose quite early. Soon after breakfast we thanked the kind family and walked into Stephensville. Found there some mail from home, also from Elder Anderson. We then posted our letters and came to the depot and at 10:40 a.m. Took the train for Cresson, 80c half-fare. Arriving there about 1 p.m., we bought a steak, 25c. It was so tough that we could hardly eat it. Waited at the depot until 4:45 p.m. and took the train for Cleburne. Arriving there, we went to the barbershop and had a shave, 15c, and then walked out to Bro. Griffin’s, a fine friend of the elders. They were glad to see us. We were made welcome. Given a lunch and then talked until 10 p.m. and retired in the parlor. Good bed.

Wednesday, February 12, 1902

Was late when we arose. After breakfast we both took a bath and then started out about 8 miles to see Elders Madsen and Leak. Went by way of Cleburne. Found them at Bro. S.L. Pasey’s. After eating with them, we enjoyed ourselves talking until 3:30 p.m. when we bid them goodby and came back. While in town, we called on Mrs. Cook for a short while, one of Elder Barber’s friends. We then walked out to Bro. Griffin’s. After supper three of their neighbors came in and they were desirous of haring us preach as they had never heard us. Elder Barber asked me to occupy the time. I spoke for 45 minutes on the Restoration of the Gospel. After closing our meeting, we sang a few songs, & at 10 p.m. Retired to our beds of rest.

Thursday, February 13, 1902

We arose at 5 a.m. in order to catch the train. The folks prepared us a nice breakfast. We bid them goodby and started for the depot, arriving there just a few moments before the train started. Bought a ticket for Alvarado, 25c. Was not long speeding over that short distance. We had to wait there for a train until 9:30 a.m. as it was 40 minutes late. From here we bought a ticket to Hillsboro, 45c. Arriving there at 10:30 a.m., we were just in time to take the local train for Italy, Ticket 30c. We reached Italy at 12:30. Walked out three miles to Bro. Samuel Wimberley, a good friend of the elders. Met Elder Anderson at his place looking fine. After partaking of a nice dinner, we talked for a while and then I packed my grip and made preparations to bid farewell to Texas. Elder A. and I shaved each other. At 7:15 p.m. Roy Wimberley hitched on to the buggy and took me to Italy to catch the 9:30 p.m. Train for Dallas, ticket 70c. The train came in on the minute and I was soon speeding northward. Arriving at Dallas at 11:30 I then walked 10 blocks to the Santa Fe depot but it was closed up, so I went to the Arms Hotel and bought a bed, 25c, and laid down for the night feeling quite tired.

Friday, February 14, 1902

I arose at 7 a.m. Walked over to the Santa Fe depot and found that my train did not leave until 5 p.m. I was greatly disappointed, but had to put up with it. At 9 a.m. I walked over the town. Bought breakfast, 15c. Came back to the depot and rested until about 1 p.m., when I took another stroll. Ate dinner, 15c. Then I had a lunch put up, 45c , to take on the road, and at 5 p.m. we began to sail. Changed cars at Cleburne. During the night I slept part of the time.

Saturday, February 15, 1902

When morning came, we were up on the plains of Kansas. Stopped at one of the little towns for breakfast. By this time, we were in a country where the ground was covered with snow. At 12 noon we stopped at Newton for 20 minutes for dinner. Continuing on across the snowy white plains, we arrived at Kansas City at 6:40 p.m. As I did not know the way to the mission headquarters, I took a hack for the place and the reprobate charged me one dollar. Arriving at the office all okay, I took them by surprise. They were eating supper. After they were through they prepared me a lunch. We then retired to the office where we talked for a while. Bro. Street, a young man from Utah, a Mormon, who was working there in the interest of Uncle Sam, asked me to go to the hotel with him. Had a nice warm bath and retired to rest.

Sunday, February 16, 1902

It was quite late when I arose. Took a street car for the office. Ate breakfast and at 11 a.m. assembled in Sunday School, the first one since leaving home. This over, I went to the restaurant and had dinner, 15c. Spent the afternoon with the elders. At 5:30 p.m., Elder J.A. Ellison, a particular friend of Elder Craner’s, and myself had an oyster supper at Elder Craner’s expense. At 7:30, meeting commenced. Elder C. England was the first speaker, dwelling some upon the 29th Chapter of Isaiah, followed by Pres. Duffin, who took up the Book of Mormon and talked for some time on it. This over, I went up the street and bought a bed, 25c. Rested well.

Monday, February 17, 1902

It was quite late when I arose. I was intending to start for Fall City to visit my relatives but found I would not have time to get my clothing and get off on the 10:55 train. So concluded to wait until the next day. Elder England went downtown with me and helped me to buy my things. Bought a coat and vest, $10.00, two shirts, $2.00, hat for $2.50, shoes for $2.75, two pair of socks, 20c, one cravat, 25c, and an overcoat, $3.75 Was given a reduction on everything. Also bought my ticket to Falls City, $1.55. Returning to the office with my new things, I then went to the restaurant and got breakfast and dinner combined. Spent the afternoon packing up my grips. After supper, the elders and sisters assembled in the office and held Mutual Improvement. This through, we laid down to rest.

Tuesday, February 18, 1902

Soon after I arose, I went to breakfast, 15c, and at 9 a.m. Bid the elders goodby and started to the depot and took my departure at 10:55 for Falls City. Stopped at Atchison 20 minutes for dinner. Arrived at my destination at 3 p.m. Uncle Robert G. Wills was there to meet me. As soon as I saw him I supposed he was the man. We then walked to his home and met his wife. After a chat for a while our conversation ran off on polygamy. They did not believe in that. His daughter Nettie, a sweet girl, was off in town teaching school and did not get home until 6 p.m. when she saw me she came in and grasped my hand and said she knew who I was and was very glad to see me. After supper two young women from the next door came in and in a short time Sister Morgan, Uncle Robert’s sister-in-law, came in to see me and we had a splendid time. It was so very hard for me to talk as I had an awful cold. After they left I talked with Sister Nettie on the gospel until 10 p.m. Gave them a Book of Mormon and Orson Pratt’s works and retired upstairs to rest. They placed a hot iron in bed with me to keep my feet warm, also made me some sage tea to drink before going to bed for my cold. Uncle Robert slept with me.

Wednesday, February 19, 1902

I did not rest very good during the night as my cough bothered me considerable. Arose quite late. Soon after breakfast, Nettie had to go to school as she was one of the teachers. I talked with the folks until 10 a.m. when I took a walk over the town. Also went to the barbershop and had a shave, 15c. Returning, I spent some time in writing up my journal. Aunt Ellen then prepared a lunch. I did not eat very much. Shortly after this, Miss Mertell Morgan, a distant relative, came in to see me. Had a nice chat. Showed her all of my photos. During the afternoon I spent most of the time in conversation upon the gospel with the folks. About 4:30 p.m. Nettie returned from school.

After supper was over, Sister Morgan came in. I told them of the habits of Texas. Our conversation drifted off on the gospel, resurrection, and finally on celestial marriage as believed in by the Latter-day Saints. Uncle Robert had become somewhat excited and said he did not believe a word of such stuff. After retiring to our beds Uncle Robert said for me not to think of anything he had said as he often spoke too quick. I was soon asleep and rested fine.

Thursday, February 20, 1902

I rested fine during the night. Soon after breakfast Nettie went to her school again, I talked with Uncle Robert until 10 a.m. when I walked over to Mr. Morgan’s and spent a few hours as they had given me that invitation. While there I was given a nice dinner. At 2 p.m. Mr. Morgan took me to the depot in his buggy and I bought a ticket to Verdon, 28c. A few moments’ ride and I was at the place. Began inquiring for Samuel W. Decker and as luck would have it, I found him in town. He lived out in the country two miles and a half. A short ride in the buggy and we arrived at his place. He told Aunt Nancy Ann that one of Jeff’s sons was here. She came out to the buggy and grasped my hand and said “Is it possible that this can be one of Jeff’s sons?” She said she was very glad to see me and would like very much that Father could be with us. Spent the remainder of the afternoon talking. Ate supper, after which we continued to talk until 11:30 p.m. on different subjects. Retired to rest. Slept fine.

(To be continued)


1 Comment »

  1. After reading Edje’s post today over at Juvenile Instructor I pulled out my own mission journal and enjoyed reading some of the mission memories, the same sort of stories that are told here: conversations with people, tracting, mail coming or not coming, food, people, more people, church meetings, notes about practical subjects, etc.

    Ah, the wonders of missionary life. (Really, it’s an amazing experience in so many ways, and although there were some major differences between this elder’s experience and mine, there are many similarities.)

    Comment by Amy T — January 20, 2013 @ 8:07 pm

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