Saturday, February 10, 2018

A Glimpse of my 2nd-Great Grandmother Vaughn

They must have liked the hymn "How Firm a Foundation" in the Ogden Third Ward Relief Society. They appear to have sung it at least every other meeting.

My 2nd-Great Grandmother, "Sr. Isabella Baun was sustained into [their] society" on 1 August 1888, a year after her arrival from England. In those days, it wasn't automatic that LDS ladies would be members of the Relief Society. You had to join and apparently be "sustained" regardless of whether the secretary could spell your name.

The Ogden Third Ward had a meeting house on the Tabernacle square, but the Relief Society often met in the "vestry of the tabernacle." That was a grand building indeed!

Ogden Tabernacle, on the block where the Temple is today.
They did get Grandma Vaughn's name right on a list of members in September 1893. And there are several instances of her listed with other sisters as bearing testimony in general terms of gratitude for blessing and dedication to the work. It is good to see that she was active before 1894; before she knew how much she would need those sisters.
Salt Lake Herald, Thursday, December 6, 1894:
Thomas Vaughn, an employee in the Union Pacific transfer department, was taken suddenly ill while at work on Tuesday afternoon, was taken home and died at 6:30 the same evening. Heart disease was the cause of his death. The funeral will be held at 2 p.m. today. The deceased leaves a widow and eight children.
The Relief Society met the day after Christmas:
Sis. Farr . . . said the donations given for Christmas were liberal, thought all had been well remembered, much credit was due our treasurer, Sis. Mary Taylor for the good work performed in sending out baskets and donations for the poor, did not think it wise to prolong our meeting, as it was very cold, and no fire.
There is no mention of Isabella in the Relief Society minutes for all of 1895. Then on January 22, 1896, she began bearing her testimony again.

There is only one time a secretary gave her testimony individual mention. January 19, 1898:
Isabel[la] Vaughn wished to thank her father in heaven for his blessing towards her and her family. Wished to be counted worthy.
The soul that on Jesus hath leaned for repose
I will not, I cannot, desert to its foes;
That soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake,
I’ll never, no never, I’ll never, no never,
I’ll never, no never, no never forsake!
Thank you, Grandma Isabella.


  1. What a talent you have for taking the routine bits of documentary records, understanding what they meant in a real life, and then telling the story in such a moving way.


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