Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » Venus in Tahiti: 1 January – 18 January 1916

Venus in Tahiti: 1 January – 18 January 1916

By: Ardis E. Parshall - June 02, 2013

(Previous installment)

Sat. Jan 1. 1916.

Sister Compton and I prepared our New Years dinner which we ate out on the back veranda. Later we all walked down to the the [sic] German vessel that was being raised up out of the bay by an American company. On our way home we called on the American Consul and his wife Mr & Mrs. Thos. B. Layton who treated us very cordially. Returning hone we had a light lunch of ice cream cake, fruit, candy and lemonade, Mahana Terai Marie, Teata, Teupo & Terava were our New Years callers. Terai gave Sister Compton and I each a long hai of shells. All of the Elders got out ^ pressed their American suits so that they could feel like home on New Years Day.

Sun Jan 2, 1916.

Attended Sunday School and Fast meeting conducting the childrens class in the morning and bearing my testimony in the afternoon,. In the evening we all walked out to see Mr. Phillip Rori and family one of our Seventh Day Adventists friends. They were very glad to see us again and invited us to come back the following Sunday.

Mar. Jan. 3.

Since Sister Compton has come I have only to be in the kitchen every other week now, however with such a large crowd of hungry boys around it keeps us pretty close to our post. In the afternoon we went to Gauthiers to have a picture taken to be published in the Era, Deseret News & the Liahona.

Tues. Jan 4.

Spent most of the day in the kitchen. Brushed and aired all of my clothes and spent the rest of the day in study. Held Tahitian class at 7: pm. took some medicine to Tokaki and to Terais baby.


Washed and baked. Held class at 7: pm.

Thurs. Jan. 6, 1916.

Ironed, prepared the meals and visited Terai and the little daughter of Rua who were both ill, and later in the evening took some medicine down to them. Held our Tahitian class at 7: pm.

Fri. Jan 7, 1916.

As soon as breakfast was over Sister Compton and I started out to visit the saints several of whom were sick. First we called at Tahuhus and his daughter who had been ill for several months was up and around again, but could not stand in a[n] erect position. Next we went to Maupha’s and found her quite ill, but trying to assist her small children to prepare dinner. She was very glad to see us, and said that she was thankful we had come, because she didn’t think it would be long now before her life here would be finished, and that she was only waiting for the Father to call her home, out of her misery. She surely look[ed] badly, her body was wasted away almost to nothing and she was so weak from her incessant coughing that she could scarsely stand up. From there we called to see Marie, our pretty half caste friend who was making some Tahitian hats for us. She keeps house for [her] widower father, and we found her out in the kitchen instructing the new negro cook what to prepare for dinner. While we were there she served us to some delicious ice cream and cake prepared by the new cook. Leaving Marie’s we called to see Mahana and found both she and her mother quite ill. Then as we were passing a house we saw some native people crying and carrying on and we thought they were in trouble so we went in but found that some of them were a little intoxicated so we soon left. We also called to see Tuerau, Terai, and Rua’s little girl and found them all feeling a little better. We also called to see Hai one of our Josephite friends, but she had company so we we [sic] didn’t stay and went back to the house and prepared dinner.

Sat. Jan 8. 1916.

Cleaned the house and yard and did the Saturday baking. In the afternoon took some medicine over to Teraki and called to see how Terai was feeling.


Held Sunday School Sacrament Meeting and a Gospel class at 7: pm. After Sacrament meeting Bro. Rossiter and I walked out to see Pori and family and sold them a Book of Mormon.

Mar. Jan 10.

Wrote letters most of the day.

Tues. Jan 11.

Washed, and finished writing my letters.

Wed. Jan 12.

Ironed before breakfast and called to see Io[a]nes and Tehai’s new baby. Bro Rossiter and I walked out to see the the [sic] German vessel that was now entirely raised up out of the bay. We also called to see several sick people. Bro. Rossiter received a letter form Elders Stocks and Pierson from Hao stating that the Catholic priest there was getting out a warrant for his arrest on account preaching false doctrine.

Thurs. Jan 13. 1916

Spent most of the day getting out the annual Sunday School report.

Fri. Jan 14.

Printed pictures and wrote letters to send off on the Moana.

Sat. Jan 15.

Cleaning day. Visited several sick families in the afternoon. Teraki and two Josephite women and the baby of Terava. All were feeling better, but the baby who had a large gathering on its limb, so I bathed and poul[t]iced it and made it feel a little easier.

Sun. Jan 16.

Attended S.S. Sacrament Meeting & Gospel Class in the evening. We didn’t have a childrens class in S.S. because no children came on account of the heavy rain. Bathed & poultised Terava’s baby again, and after meeting the gathering broke, and the poor little thing was much easier.

Mon., Jan 17.

My week in the kitchen again. While I was preparing dinner Ioane & /tehai sent word for me to come down because their new born baby had suddenly died with croup. After dinner Bro Rossiter & Sister Compton and I went down to their house to see if we could do any thing to help them. They being Protestants believed in infant baptism and had had the ordinance preformed just before it died. Bro. Rossiter explained to them the error of that principle, and showed to them that all little children were sinless and if they died before baptism their spirits went to heaven because Jesus Christ had come to earth and sacrificed himself for the atonement of the sin of Adam & Eve. They listened closely and seemed quite interested. At 7 pm we held our regular reading and grammar class.

Tues. Jan 18.

I got up early and made a petty wreath of fine ferns and tiny white flowers to take down to Tehai’s and learn the hour of the funeral. They had the baby layed out on a pillow dressed in a lovely net dress over white silk and a little silk bonnet, it looked more like a large doll that a dead baby. They had a little white covered coffin sitting on the foot of the bed. I noticed that they had their looking glass covered over with a sheet and asked what they did it for, but they didnt seem to want to tell me, and said it was just a Maori custom. Attended the funeral at at [sic] 4: pm which didn’t last more than ten minutes, after which we walked out to the cemetary following the coffin which was carried by four young girls.

(To be continued)


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