Saturday, September 27, 2014

Brigham Young and a Letter on Apostasy

Some may be wondering with John Lewis lying dead on the floor of a gold-rush saloon. And we are not fully convinced yet, but are pursuing some pretty good leads that Jane (1827) remarried Abednego Johns in Jacks Valley, Nevada and joined the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. And there is some indication that Elinor Jenkins Vaughan Hulet may have been with her, died between 1860-62, and was buried there. But the RLDS baptisms did not occur until at least 1865, after the Civil War.

1862 US Survey of Jacks Valley, Nevada. Courtesy of the Bureau of Land Managment, US Dept. of the Interior.
Abednego John's patent was for the S 1/2 of the NE 1/4 of Sec. 22, and the S 1/2 of the NW 1/4 of Sec. 23.
The surveyor, while getting all the land features pretty well (doncha just love these old surveys?) marked A. Johns house as "A. Johnson."

There were a lot worse things than the RLDS Church (now "The Community of Christ). They had the Book of Mormon, a good part of the Doctrine & Covenants, the Holy Bible and a commitment to the Prophet Joseph Smith (w/o plural marriage). If you had landed in Utah in the midst of the Mormon Reformation, a very bad winter, and the upcoming Utah War, Springville was about the second worse place to be. I don't blame anyone for leaving. It's not my responsibility to judge. And it's not like we've not ever had anyone else in the family choose less activity in the church.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

A Not So Jolly Ending . . . But

The good news is that California, along with Utah, has a great digital newspaper archive. You can find Utah's at and California's at the less obvious url: They are a wonderful resource even when they bring bad news.

So, here it is:
BY STATE TELEGRAPH. Murder In Sierra County: Forrest City, Sierra County, October 15th.— A saloon-keeper, named John Lewis, at Alleghany, was stabbed in the right side, on the 13th inst. by a man named Frank Taylor, and died immediately. The assassin was arrested this morning, and after an examination was committed for trial.
That's from the Daily Alta California, 16 October 1867.


Time to play that game again!

One of these things is not like the others.
Three of these things are kinda the same.
Can you tell me which one's not like the others?
Now it's time to play our game!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Faith without Welsh Is nearly Dead

Dan Jones, Amazing Missionary to the Welsh
On my quest to learn Cymraeg (Welsh), one of the first things I did was to go to the LDS Distribution store just a few blocks from our house and purchase a copy of the Book of Mormon in Welsh. Reading it in Portuguese helped me learn that language. And I still have scriptures memorized in Portuguese from my mission that bounce around in my head that will apparently be there forever.

The main challenge was, the Welsh edition of 1853 has not been updated except for the cover. So, the word Arall is pretty easy as "Another" because "Testament" and Iesu Crist are obvious along with Llyfr Mormon which etymologically isn't that far off from O Livro de Mórmon in Portuguese. I see a Latin root in there -- or Indo-European?

But then I looked inside, In 1853, the book hadn't even been divided into chapters and verses as we are now familiar. That was a process that culminated in English in 1920 with Elder James E. Talmage -- even if the "most correct book" still gets occasional corrections back to the original transcript from Joseph Smith's prophetic translation.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Nevada and the Jolly Welshmen

Maybe Brigham knew the folk song. The Five Welshmen knew it even if it might have been self-deprecating to reference the humorous exploits of the bumbling Sons of Gomer. And the original number is three for the "Jolly Welshmen." So it's interesting that two of our five appear to have stayed in Utah and three seem to have gone to bumble their exploits in the Sierras.

The tune of "The Five Jolly Welshmen" is unknown to me and I don't seem to find it on "YouTube." There is another tune I can't get out of my head that I will now curse you with. I was always fascinated by the opening theme of the TV show "Bonanza" with the map of the Ponderosa Ranch straddling the California/Nevada line bursting into flames for some reason.

It was the Old West at its finest or at least for a boy who had been on family vacation to Virginia City, Reno, and Lake Tahoe. And I have always loved maps. Here's a version of the fictional Ponderosa map that is at least somewhat properly oriented:

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Blanding Conspiracy Theorists Charged for Trespass on Public Lands

See any evil here? I don't
Work-related. Caveats in place. Not talking about inside information. And, I haven't yet been invited to secret Agenda 21 meetings to destroy truth, justice, and the American Way because such meetings simply don't exist. In fact, if more people actually believed in truth, justice, and the American Way and practiced them, we wouldn't be having this discussion.

I am not directly working on the four-wheel trespasses on public land administered by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management for the multiple use of US Citizens (and even foreign visitors) under law, regulation, and the US Constitution. I wasn't going to comment at all until I saw the hand-held poster of one of the riders in an article of the Salt Lake Tribune. Check out the photos. The guy trying to hold on to the poster about Agenda 21 is also attempting to hold on to a young child. It is not clear which will slide off the moving vehicle first, the guy riding side-saddle, the poster, or the young child. I try not to go pejorative on the blog, but . . . .

Sunday, September 14, 2014

My Wife and I Are Tenth Cousins!

The Relative Finder program developed by the BYU Family History people has given me a lot of great connections. It works for anyone who uses Family Search including many non-LDS people. Our good bishop set up a group to allow us to see our relationship to any person in our ward. Everybody is connected somehow with fewer degrees of separation than one might think. This does not directly lead to family names for Temple work, but it does cause a lot of excitement with fun and interesting connections made.

So it turns out that my wife and I are tenth cousins! The program puts it out in this format: