Grouse Creek, Utah
By Deone R. Sutherland
Synopsis: Maggie Sullivan, young and beautiful, comes to Oakville as a high school teacher and attends the Deer Hunters’ Ball with Charlie Kirkenson, a lawyer, and meets a rancher, Ira Scott. Ira plans a wiener roast on Indian Mountain and invites Maggie and a number of her friends to his cabin for the party.
The ride to Indian Mountain was especially lovely in the fall. Maggie’s hair gleamed in front of us in the last of the evening light. We had our heavy jackets, but Ira said we would use the cabin if it got too chilly. My John balanced the three-layer cake on his knee. Ira turned into the narrow winding road up the steep mountain.
“Well, I expect you chose the best site around for a cabin,” said My John, with appreciation, when we finally stopped the car.
It is now August 27, 1906. Cora is confined to the State Hospital in Provo, having been judged by the courts to be insane. Her father, Isaac, has brought suit in the District Court as her guardian, petitioning to have the 1904 deed signed by Cora set aside and her land returned to her, on the grounds that she was incompetent when she signed that deed. The District Court judge, sitting without a jury (as agreed by both Isaac Birdsall and the Leavitts), has ruled in favor of the Leavitt’s, denying Isaac’s request to have Cora’s land returned to her. The District Judge has denied Isaac’s motion for a new trial. And on August 27, 1906, Isaac’s attorney files a Notice of Appeal, notifying everyone concerned that the case was being put in the hands of the three justices sitting as Utah’s Supreme Court.
As appellant in the Supreme Court phase, Isaac had to identify specific errors which he claimed the District Court had made. Those errors were:
1. That James E. Leavitt had not paid $100, or any other amount, to Cora in consideration for her deed (the money paid by Leavitt had gone to Cora’s sister Elsie May who, Isaac claimed, was not legally authorized to receive the money).
2. That Cora was insane at the time she signed the deed, so the deed was invalid.
3. That Leavitt, through the Church court system and its threat of excommunication, had used undue influence to compel Cora to sign the deed.
4. That Leavitt, through the Church court system and its promise that Cora would regain her health and happiness, had used undue influence to compel Cora to sign the deed, “which had been previously drafted without her knowledge or consent.”
Ode to a Deserted Cottage
By Norma Parkinson Post
Tired, old, forgotten, it stands
With broken, cobwebbed windows
Like bleary, sightless eyes,
Mute evidence of age and desolation.
What lives, what happy thoughts,
Were born, have lived … and died here?
Did childish faces press against the panes,
Panes shining from the care of loving hands,
Save where small hands pressed moistly
While waving farewell to some departing loved one?
Through sagging door and open hearth
Time and seasons each has left its gifts
Of dust and leaves, soft blanketings of snow,
With kindly thought to hide the scars of age.
Alone it stands, untenanted, save for some
Sly, mischievous, curious squirrel, which,
Searching for nuts, scampers fearlessly
Across its doorsill, stops, sniffs, departs
With disdainful flirt of fluffy tail;
Or gorgeous painted butterfly,
Winged spirit to some fair departed flower
Fluttering aimlessly through its empty eyes,
Flutters, and is gone, taking with it
That brief ray of sunshine and life, leaving,
Once more, loneliness and gloom of memory.
I served as a Beehive advisor for about four years. This past January, although I hadn’t been scheduled to teach one of the weeks, I found out shortly before church that I would need to teach all three classes: Beehives, Mia Maids, and Laurels. I rushed to print the lesson materials so I could outline a lesson during church, and in the rush, reverted to my old style of lesson preparation.
Before the Church came out with the Come, Follow Me teaching program in 2013, I used the Young Women Resource Guide to plan lessons, and would print out and read the suggested materials as I considered the needs of the girls in the class. When printing out the recommended general conference talks, I always tried to print at least one by a woman.
As I glanced through the Come, Follow Me lesson in January, I was surprised that there was not a woman’s talk to choose from, so I scrolled through additional lessons and became more and more puzzled as I only saw a handful of women’s talks. (more…)
From the Relief Society Magazine, 1952 –
By Deone R. Sutherland
When Maggie Sullivan came to Oakville to teach high school, we all thought she wouldn’t stay more than a year. Phi Beta Kappas with poodle haircuts and six freckles across the nose and eyes that spark your heart on zero-cold days don’t usually want to stay in Oakville. Not that Oakville doesn’t rest in the midst of the prettiest mountains you’re ever likely to see, and isn’t blessed with the best fishing in summer and skiing in winter. No, it’s not that. It’s a scarcity of likely bachelors. A certain number of girls marry boys here every year, and some go away and come back with husbands or wives, which is good for the community. But we all decided soon enough that there wasn’t anyone special enough for Maggie Sullivan. And everyone in Oakville knows the importance of being married and having families.
Then Sister Kirkenson had her nephew Charlie, who is a lawyer down in River City, come all the way up to Oakville to straighten out a deed from old Grandpa Kirkenson. Soon as Charlie met Maggie he kept having to come up to work on that deed. Brother Kirkenson stopped Max short and remarked on the amount of legal work Charlie was able to find in Oakville on the week ends they held the barn dances or special balls like the Deer Hunters’ or Harvest.
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Here’s another newsletter sent to L.D.S. servicemen (at least the American ones) in Italy, in the closing days of World War II.
3 March 1945
Dear Brethren and Sisters:
The winter that seemed to never pass is reluctantly permitting spring to announce its more pleasant weather. No matter how bad things are there is always the assurance that there will be a more pleasant day. Perhaps this is a relative condition resulting from endurance, but whatever its cause, it is consoling. Day always follows night, calm follows the storm and winter is followed by the spring. As spring follows the winter so will peace follow the years of conflict.
It must have been of such contrasts that Lehi spoke when he said, “For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things … even the forbidden fruit in opposition to the tree of life; the one being sweet and the other bitter.” He even reasoned with his son that life would have no meaning, unless these opposing forces were felt. to know joy one must know misery, to do good there must be sin. (Read 2 Nephi 2 chap.) this in no way implies that a man must partake of the evil, neither does it lessen or excuse the evils of war. (more…)
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