AND SO IT GOES...
I've come to the end of Aunt Edith's book. Although I've edited some of what she's shared, you've read most of it along with me. I'd thank her for doing such a great job, but she's probably in a peaceful place talking to Grandma Sarah about...me, hoping I get this right. This won't be the end of Canute and Sarah either. I'll share a story or two along the way that may have either one or both of them in it.
And next, I'll go right into Peter's life.
He has some stories to share also..
And so it goes....
Canute and Sarah's family continued to grow with the joy of having grand children. Sarah was true to her promise of helping bring them into the world and loved every minute of it. But sometimes there was sadness.
Her 5th son Nels and his wife Martina had a little son named after his father, and was their only child. One day as Sarah was in the garden, her son came running, telling her little Nels was very sick. Both Sarah and Martina worked with the baby night and day doing everything they knew of to do. But in spite of all this, the little flame that had burned for two short years was extinguished. The shock and suddenness of this left his parents paralyzed with sadness and Martina, the quiet gentle mother, was stricken with a grief she carried all her life. They never had another child.
There was a great rise and fall of emotion within a family as close as Canute's was. But they all shared a love so deep they managed to get through it. They all adored Sarah and would come to her for anything. Even the other wives children and grand children would sometimes take their meals with her. Or after eating at home, they would go to Sarah's for a slice of warm bread or a piece of cake.
The Big House, as Sarah's was called, became a haven for all. The constant comings and goings, the living and dying, the births and marriages and guests from all walks of life made the house resemble a bee hive. The sick and afflicted had their needs taken care of, the hungry were fed, the tired were rested, the sorrowing were comforted and the confused were counseled. None left with the feeling of disappointment or frustration. Canute and Sarah felt blessed with the ability to help God's children on His behalf in this part of His vineyard, and enjoyed every minute of it.
Within this time, Canute had been moved from the position of Bishop to Stake President, which meant he had more responsibilities and more people to take care of. Also the responsibility of being Assistant Superintendent during the building of a Temple in the neighboring town of Manti. Every available man was brought into service with just plows and scrapers. For the first two years the men knew back breaking labor of digging, blasting, scraping and hauling until the foundations were laid deep and secure to support the massive stone walls that were to follow. But steadily the Temple rose with the contributions of labor, donations of produce and money, including Sarah's Sunday Egg funds. The Temple was built one hundred percent by all in the vicinity with their few chickens, and the cooperation, labor and sacrifices they so willingly gave.
In the year 1880, Canute began thinking of the possibilities of higher education in Ephraim, and told Sarah he thought the next time any of the Church officials came, he was going to broach the subject with them. Consequently when two of them came again for a conference and then to enjoy a savory meal Sarah had prepared for them, Canute discussed the possibility of establishing an institute of higher learning. They liked the idea and took it up with other officials when they got back to Salt Lake City who in turn agreed it was the thing to do.
Thus, Snow Academy came into existence, later being changed to Snow College. The first classes were held in the top of the old Co-op store, which was on the same block as Canute's homes. Later years saw the construction of a red brick, Oolite stone trimmed building on the block east of the old co-op store. It took a few years for the school to become a permanent institution, but once it began, the effects and benefits were far reaching.
*NOTE* The picture at the start of this post is of that store.
This is what is printed on the back of it:
"The Ephraim United Order Mercantile Institution was an offshoot of ZCMI in Salt Lake City. The Greek Revival-style gable with cornice returns and brackets displays "Holiness to the Lord" inscribed over the beehive symbol of industry, community, resurrection, and exaltation. Built from 1871 to 1872, the first floor was a co-op, the second a recreation and Relief Society meeting hall. Sanpete Stake Academy, predecessor of Snow College, opened upstairs Nov. 5, 1888 and remained about a decade. Restored in 1990 the building is the finest remaining structure of the Latter-day Saints co-op era and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Now opened by the Sanpete Trade Association as an arts and crafts co-op, the structure stands adjacent to a granary/flour mill housing the Central Utah Art Center."
Today the scholarship that Canute set up when Snow Academy came into being is still available to students wanting to learn. Also, an oil painting of Canute is there with these words " Snow College was actually started at the kitchen table of Canute Peterson." A number of his posterity have attended, including he and Sarah's grand daughter Florence (my grandmother), her daughter Louise (my Aunt who gave me the book) and yes, me...
But the cutest one of all who says that's where she will go to college is my grand daughter, who is Canute and Sarah's 4x great grand daughter. She loves the story of Canute and Sarah, wrote in a journal about them and even did some scrap booking on them...she's 9..
This was last summer on a Sunday, first time she'd ever seen Snow College.
And all she could do was peer through the glass saying,
"Grama, I'm going here someday."
Ok, I went another direction for a bit, so now back to the story...
In the year 1890, the church passed what they called the "Manifesto", making it unlawful to engage in plural marriage. Many men were jailed and put in prison by the federal government for having more than one wife, it was against the laws of the Nation.
It's told that Canute was arrested one time but because of his age and health, wasn't jailed. In him and Sarah's home there's what's called a "Polygamy Pit" where he and others would hide when they got word that the Federal Agents were coming. (When I have a chance. I'll take pictures of this and the rest of the house.)
Canute and Sarah continued to be blessed with grand children and the joy of helping others. They would take rides together and visit around the county to help where it was needed most. Sarah was very active in her Relief Society work and loved to be involved with the younger girls, teaching them all the things they'd need to know as they became wives and mothers.
The saddest day in the lives of the whole family was May twentieth, 1896. She was sixty nine years of age when the Lord called to Sarah, and she answered...
So many people knew the warmth of Sarah's love. Her death left a painful gap within the community. Many turned out to bid her farewell. Someday I'll share more on Sarah
The final parting of Canute with Sarah was the hardest ordeal he had ever known, in spite of his firm belief in the hereafter and the ultimate reunion of his loved ones. His dependence upon this courageous, cheerful, inspirational woman was of such magnitude that to be without her was almost more that human endurance could stand. His grief was inconsolable for so long, although his family tried their best to help him through his burden of grief and sorrow.
The following December, Canute and Sarah's first great grandchild was born to Saze. He so wished that Sarah could have been there with him to receive the news. He said how happy Sack would have been, but then said he believed she was aware of it and was "dancing in Heaven."
As the year 1903 moved on into it's maturity, spring followed by summer, then the aging signs of fall, Canute felt a surety that the spring and summer of his life had passed. As he leaned on the cane that helped support his aging limbs, he felt that his usefulness was over. He longed for Sack with an intensity that was almost unbearable. His grand daughter Saze and her little family now lived in the big house with him. Often in the evenings when the wind whistled outside, Canute would go sit in the dining room by the stove. Saze would see a far off look in his eyes and a faint smile on his lips. The slow, hopefully unnoticed, tears made their way down his cheeks to be lost in his snowy white beard. She would turn away for she knew he wanted to be alone. She also knew of what he was thinking, and hoped for his sake that his prayers of going home to Sarah Ann would soon be answered.
The Lord was merciful to Canute and on the fourteenth day of October, 1903, at seventy nine years of age, He called Canute home, writing the final chapter in the life of Sack...
Canute's funeral was large and attended by people from all walks of life. His children and grandchildren all came to see him lying so peacefully at rest. Peter lifted his youngest child, 4 year old Edith, up to see her grandfather in his casket. She looked in amazement and said "Papa, what is that bottle there lying by grandpa?" He told her " Sweet girl, that is the bottle of wheat that was saved from the wheat your grandmother raised in Lehi, and saved the people that winter. Your grandfather thought more of that bottle of wheat than any other thing he possessed. He wanted it buried with him."
And so it goes.....
Canute and Sarah had 9 children together.
They were married 47 years.
Canute died 7 years after Sarah
Canute was the father of 21 children, 81 grandchildren
and one great grandson.
Maria died 10 years later and is buried next to Sarah in Ephraim.
Charlotte died in Salt Lake City at the home of a daughter in 1930 and is buried there.
Thanks for following along on this journey of my great great grandparents.
I'll write next about their first son Peter, my great grandfather. He has a story also.
I plan to share pictures as soon as the weather clears up.
And I'll keep telling the stories of my very diverse family.
See ya Yesterday...