Sunday, August 5, 2012

Emeline Allemann

  • Name: Emeline Allemann
  • Born: June 16, 1890 Bern, Bear Lake, Idaho
  • Died: August 11, 1975 Logan, Cache, Utah
  • Related through: Dan's grandfather Lynn Crookston

Emeline was born June 16, 1890 in Bern, Bear Lake County, Idaho to George Allemann Sr. and Anna Maria Gredig.

My earliest recollection was when I was about three years old. Mother had a large wooden cradle. I recall my brother George rocking me to sleep by singing "Now Let Us Rejoice in the Day of Salvation."

When I was five years old, my brother Edwin was born. One afternoon, which was the 7th of September, Sarah went with Matthew, Annie and myself with my older brothers down in the south bend where they were building a fence. When we came home Mother had, to our surprise, a little new baby boy. A midwife had delivered him.

In the fall of 1899 my parents prepared with much rejoicing to go to the Logan Temple and have their endowments and their nine living and three deceased children sealed to them. I recall well how we went in three covered wagons down Mink Creek Canyon. We stayed with an old couple by the name of Latterman on Fifth North Street in Logan. They were very nice to us. They had fruit trees. I recall Mother was afraid we would eat too many blue plums.

The 11th of October, 1899, I guess was about the happiest day of Mother's life. We all went to the Temple and were sealed as one family. On our way home it had snowed in the canyon and the road was muddy. It was hard for the horses to pull the load, so we had to get out and walk up the steepest hills. We didn't have galoshes, so Mother put some heavy homemade men's socks over our shoes.

We lived in lower Bern, about two miles from the meeting house. It was only a one room meetinghouse which was also used for our schoolhouse from the first to the eighth grades. I started school when I was six and was very thrilled with it. I loved to read from the big chart at the front of the room, John T. Rigby was my teacher. Our neighbors, the Buehler and Bienz families, and we would ride in one big bob sleigh to school. There were about ten or twelve of us. We had lots of fun.

I remember the day I was baptized. It was Sunday afternoon on May 20, 1899, in upper Bern in an irrigation canal. There were quite a number of others baptized that day.

My parents were immigrants from Switzerland and lived in poor circumstances. They had four small children. One died in Switzerland before they left. The others were J. Peter , Sarah, and Abraham. Abe had a hard time to survive on the three week trip on the ship. They came as far as Evanston, Wyoming by train, from there on a wagon. The driver was partly drunk, so gave them a rough ride. They first went to Nounan and worked in a dairy. Later they moved to Bern and homesteaded the place where Edwin now lives. They built a one room log cabin with a dirt roof and floor. There several babies were born.

My father's sister came with them from Switzerland. Aunty Basy, we called her. She is the only relative I ever saw or knew outside of my Father's and Mothers own family. Basy had arthritis ever since she was eighteen years of age. She wasn't married and always lived with my father's family. She was a great help to my mother. She was one of the kindest and sweetest, patient ladies I ever knew.

Mother had twelve of her children with a midwife to assist. When the twins were born, Matthew and Annie, the old dirt roof would leak and my Aunty would hold the umbrella over the bed where the babies lay.

The year before I was born Father hauled logs from the canyon and had them sawed on all four sides and built a house. It is the one that is still on the homestead. At that time, it was by far the best home in Bern. I was the first child born in it, and I am the tenth child.

Father always had enough work for the children and kept them home. In the summer he made Swiss cheese. He didn't have enough feed for the cows, so he went to a small valley twenty miles from Montpelier called Ephraim Valley. There was lots of good feed and water there. He took cows on share from people in Paris and Montpelier and made cheese and gave them half. We milked about fifty or sixty cows daily.

Father took the boys and Sarah to the ranch and Mother always stayed in Bern with the smaller children and took care of the place there. She worked hard as she always had to chase stray cattle out of the meadow and fix fences. When I was about ten or twelve, I too went to the ranch and milked cows. Sarah got married so we hired a girl, Lena Bienz, who was my age, and we kept the house and milked the cows. She was my lifelong friend

Later Father bought Crow Creek, a large ranch where there was plenty of feed for the cattle. My brother Abe homesteaded there and when he got married, lived just across the creek from us. His wife, Lizzie Bueler, Lena and I would go fishing on Crow Creek. This was before automobiles, so there weren't many fishermen around. This was our main sport; we loved to go fishing. We always came home with a good mess of native rainbow trout.

It was too far to go to Sunday School or church, so on a Sunday we would go visit our neighbors about a mile or two away, the Books ranch, the Wells ranch, and the Wilkes at the half-way; or else we had them come visit us.

We had snow in the mountains until about the latter part of June. The boys would ride horseback to get some snow and we made some of the best ice cream you could wish for.

There used to be lots of sheep herders on the forest reserve and there would be sheep men around. They would bring us some mutton. Once in a while we would be invited to a sheep camp for dinner and sometimes their wives stayed with them a couple of weeks.

We would also pick wild berries and strawberries at the edge of the meadow. They were small, but very sweet and good flavored. We could usually get enough for at least a dish. There was a beautiful spring of water a fourth mile from the house where wild gooseberries grew. We also got service berries in the mountains.

Lots of times we would go on a hike with my brother. I recall one time Lena and I had new shoes. We wanted to go to the Snow Drift Mountains west of our house. We could go horseback to the foot of the mountain, then hike to the top. It was a strenuous hike and we almost wore out our shoes. Matthew and Edwin were with us. We always had to be back in time for milking as we each milked about twenty or twenty-five cows.

I recall when the haying season was on and the boys didn't have time to milk. Lena and I milked most of them, one evening I milked forty-three cows. This was the most I ever milked at one time. Father would have calves tied and the cows ready so I could just go from one cow to the other. He would also empty my milk buckets. I think I milked more cows than anyone else.

Father made the best Swiss cheese. In the fall he would always take a wagon load to Logan to sell. He would bring back a load of fruit, mainly apples and pears and some prunes and plums. He always took one of the boys with him. They would be gone about a week. We children would anxiously look for them to come back and run to meet them. Father would pick us up and give us a nice apple. We had shelves in the cellar and we laid them out so as to keep longer. In the evening before we went to bed, Mother would give us all an apple.

We had very little canned fruit. We had a small garden and berries. I remember our Christmases were very meager. The ward had a children's party with a community tree where about one or two presents were hanging on the tree I remember I received a picture album once and another time a pretty cup and saucer. Santa Claus would come and give each their present, also a bag of candy and nuts. Sarah would make us each a new dress for Christmas.

I remember so well my sister Annie, about ten, and I seven, received the first nice doll. An old trapper by the name of Will Adams lived down by the river, who used to come around quite often. He played Santa Claus. He had a big bag on his back and a Santa Claus mask. He liked Sarah and when he came up from the barn, Sarah said, "Oh look, girls! Here comes Santa!" We were so scared we ran and hid under the bed. We bawled and didn't want to see him. But we each got a beautiful, large doll; one dressed in pink and the other in blue.

When my sister Annie was thirteen years of age diphtheria came to our community and very severe cases in our family. It took the lives of my sister Annie and my brother Benny, seven years of age. Annie died on the 17th of June and Benjamin on the 1st of August. Previous to this, in the year 1899, Mother lost two little girls, Elsbeth and Marie, ages six and four, within two weeks apart, from malaria fever. This was before I was born. Mother and Father had lots of hardships, but in all their trials, they would acknowledge the hand of the Lord. They never had a photograph of these girls. I dreamed I saw a photo of them, when I described it in the morning to my mother, she wept.

I guess I was about thirteen or fourteen when I first had dates. I think Ezra Kunz was my first beau and I would go to ward and school dances with him. We went in sled and there were several couples together. We had good times as everybody exchanged partners and everyone danced square dances, waltz, two-step, tucker dance and polkas. The tucker dance was a mixer where someone would clap their hands and the girls would move ahead marching a while and change partners.

Chris Petersen would play the fiddle and someone the piano. Matthew also played the violin, so the orchestra didn't cost much. Young folks from surrounding towns would come to the dances. I had several boyfriends. In the summer of 1917 I met my future husband on Crow Creek.

Byron Crookston was a forest ranger for the Caribou Forest. He stopped at our ranch quite often and I began to think he was a very nice fellow. He was quite timid and so was I, especially when I had to go change my clothes to go milk cows. I would leave him sitting in the front room and I'd go to the laundry room to change. Then I'd crawl out of the back window and out to the corral so he wouldn't see me in the old clothes.

Byron didn't very often come to the corral, but one time he offered to milk. He wasn't used to milking, so was very slow. I guess I milked three cows to his one, so he didn't offer again.

We used to go horseback riding and our love for each other increased. In September of 1917 he had to leave for the Army. We went to Bern together as I wanted my mother to meet him. The next day I saw him off at Montpelier. It was surely hard to part as we both felt we were meant for each other.

I had a call to go on a mission to the Northern States and left home on October 3, 1917. Sarah went with me to Salt Lake City where I went through the Temple and had my endowments. I was set apart for my mission by Apostle Rudgar Clawson. We also attended conference. I left Salt Lake City on October 10, 1917.

It was my first long trip on the train. Bertha Hymas from Bear Lake Stake was going to the Eastern States, so we had a berth together. Chicago was my headquarters. There were six of us lady missionaries and four elders in the company. I stayed in Chicago several days and had district conference. Then I went to Council Bluffs. Sister Ellsworth, the Mission President's wife, went with me.

We had district conference there with ten elders and five lady missionaries. It was the West Iowa Conference. Sister Florence Child and I were assigned to Boone, Iowa. There was a small branch and two elders also labored there. I had the experience of speaking on a street corner and drew a pretty good crowd.

Sister Child was released and left for home on the Dec 7. I was alone for three days, then Eletha Simmons came to be my companion. We went tracting a lot and made lots of friends. One day we witnessed a cyclone. It was one warm summer afternoon. We were out gathering in some of our Books of Mormon as we were to be transferred. Suddenly some dark clouds appeared. We decided to go to Strobel, one of the families of Saints, and do a little sewing. It got almost dark and Sister Strobel hollered, "Oh, a cyclone!"

We looked out of the window and saw timber and stuff flying in the air. We were only about a block away. It lasted only a minute, but blew houses away. It took the porch off the house we had planned to go to, just before we decided to quit.

The Hollomans, a family of Saints with two little children, were in their home which was moved off the foundation over against another house and a huge tree fell where their house had stood. It picked a cow up and carried it a block, but left it unhurt. It only passed through a corner of the town, but destroyed everything in that part.

Another unusual coincidence happened while on my mission. One day as we came in from tracting at noon our landlady said she had heard that a train of soldiers was coming through Boone from the West. My youngest brother, Edwin, was at Camp Lewis in Washington. Sister Simmons and I thought we would go see if anyone we knew could be on it, s the train would stop for about ten minutes.

We watched them line out of the car one by one like cattle. To my happy surprise, here came Edwin. He spied me about the same time I saw him. I heard him say, "Oh here she is." The lieutenant told him to step outside the line and we had a short and enjoyable visit. He was on his way overseas to France.

I labored in Boone, then a short time in DesMoines, Iowa, when I recieved word from my Bishop, Robert Schmid, that my mother was seriously ill. They thought it best for me to come home. This was truly a very hard thing for me to do, as I so much enjoyed my mission and hoped to stay for two years. I only served not quite a year.

I arrived home on August 13, 1918. Mother got well again and was able to go to Logan to the Temple. In February, 1919, I also went to Logan.

The war ended on November 11, 1918. This was the happiest news I had ever heard as my sweetheart and my brother Edwin were in the Army. They would all come home.

On March 12, 1919, Byron and I were married in the Logan Temple. This was indeed the happiest day of my life, in spite of the flu which was raging so badly that all public places of gatherings had to be closed except the LDS. Temple.

Byron had a job in Brigham City guarding the railroad at $4.00 dollars a day. We lived in Aunt Mary Farmer's little home. In August we rented a place in Logan on Fifth North. On January 4, 1920, our first baby, Lynn, was born. Byron was so good to me and helped to care for the baby. In the spring of 1920 we bought a little old place on 340 North 3rd East, where we have lived ever since.

We could not afford to pay much for a home and we had been taught not to go into debt. We had looked around for some time and I am sure we were inspired to buy this place. At the time I cried and told my husband I thought I deserved a nicer home. But we cleaned it up and later started to build on to it, and then we made it modern. We always worked together. I helped with the carpentry and he helped with the house work.

On December 30, 1920, our second child came. We named him George after my father. So we had two babies born in the same year. Lynn didn't walk until he was fifteen months old. Both babies were born at home. My dear sister Sarah, always took care of me and the babies for the first twelve days.

On the 29th of June 1922 another little baby boy came to bless our home. We named him Ray Benjamin. He was such a good baby that it made it easier for me to watch the two older live wires. George walked when he was eleven months old.

August 24, 1923, we had another baby and were so thrilled when we had a darling little girl that we named Lola. Little Lynn was so happy and said to me, "Mama, aren't you glad nobody else got her?" While I was in bed, Byron finished our bathroom. Was I ever happy! Soon after, he finished the two bedrooms.

We had a lovely garden and raised all the vegetables we needed, also flowers. When the boys were old enough they would take the little wagon and load it with vegetables and sell them. They would come home so happy with the money. We sold it cheap enough so they always got rid of it.

On the 17th of January in 1927, we were blessed with another sweet boy. He seemed healthy at first, but the older children had measles and he may have gotten them, too, which affected his heart. He died when he was twelve days old. We named him Rulon. It was so hard for me to take as I loved him so much. We had a little funeral at our home. Uncle Nick Crookston gave such a lovely sermon, which gave us comfort.

On June 29, 1929, we were blessed with another darling little baby girl. We named her Donna. Mrs. Florence Bird, a neighbor who was a nurse before she married, took care of me. Beatrice, my niece, stayed with us a short time while she worked in town.

Lots of things could be mentioned about the children as they grew up and our early married life. The place we bought was just two small rooms, was very dirty and we had to put in a new floor. There wasn't even water on the lot. We had to carry it from the neighbors. Wild plum and chokecherry trees grew around it like a forest. We surely worked hard to clean it up. My husband was a plumber, so we soon had the water in the house. Our lot was mainly in grass and weeds.

We had a little garden in our front yard for a few years. I remember we also got a cow and had her staked in the back yard. I milked her most of the time. Where the chicken coop is now was the stable for the cow. One time we just had a ton of hay delivered and some boys in the neighbors lot set it on fire while we were gone. The firemen were here and saved some of it, but it was water soaked. We soon sold the cow and had chickens. My brothers gave us a pet lamb which was lots of fun for the children.

Byron made swings and trapezes for the children and there were always lots of the neighbor children around.

Byron did plumbing with his brother Bob the first year, then for himself. When the boys were a little older, they would go with him and help. So they all learned to do plumbing. There was always a lot to do on the place as we soon had the lot plowed. We planted berries and trees. We always had a lovely garden and raised all the vegetables we needed the year around.

In the fall Byron went hunting and always got a deer. When the boys were old enough, they would go with him. They all loved the mountains and would go for hikes. We never had to worry about our boys rambling around town. Often the neighbors who had boys would call to see if their boys were here and if so, would say, "I never worry if they are with the Crookston boys."

All our children grew active in the church. Lynn was the only one to go on a mission. Ray was a Stake Missionary for a short time, but by the time he and George were old enough to go on regular missions, they were in the service.

All our children married lovely companions who came from prominent and good families. Lola and Donna each married sons of Stake Presidents. All our children were married in the Temple, and are now raising lovely families. I hope they will all follow in their parents' footsteps.

We now have 45 beautiful grandchildren, all beautiful and normal in every way. I am thankful for each and every one of them. (They ended up with 50 grandchildren.)

Now in conclusion, I am most grateful for my testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and for all the wonderful blessings He has given me. My great desire is that I may live true and faithful to the end and that all of my family and loved ones will all be true Latter-day Saints so we can be one great family in the hereafter.

Thanks to Grandma Melva for providing this history.

1 comment:

  1. I was the 48th out of 50 grandchildren and was born on her birthday. I was named Emily and love being named after such an amazing and hardworking women.