ELIZA LUELLA STEWART UDALL
(A sketch written by her son Levi)
ELLA (as she was affectionately known to her intimate associates), the second child and eldest daughter of Levi Stewart and Margery Wilkerson, was born May 21, 1855, in Salt Lake City. While she customarily signed her name "E. L. S. Udall," we shall refer to her as "Ella."
The Stewarts were of Scottish descent. Ella's paternal progenitors were among the early settlers (1674) in the South. Around the year 1800 the Stewarts lived first in North Carolina and later in Tennessee. Her father, however, grew to manhood in Illinois; there the Mormon elders found and converted him in the year 1837. From that time, having cast his lot with the "saints," he endured the persecutions of his people in both Missouri and Illinois and it was not until the autumn of 1848 that he reached Salt Lake Valley.
Ella's earliest recollection was of their home at 4th South and State Street, in Salt Lake City. When she was ten years of age the family moved to Big Cottonwood. She attended private schools in Salt Lake, which included President Young's school located near Eagle Gate. Among her teachers was the gifted poetess, Sarah E. Carmachel. The knowledge thus gained, inspired and remained with her throughout her life. She could and frequently did repeat many poems and stories from the famous old "McGuffey Readers."
ELIZA LUELLA (ELLA) STEWART UDALL
All of the Stewart children were brought up to love the restored Gospel. Their father had personally known and guarded the prophet, Joseph Smith, and was also a confidant and devoted follower of Brigham Young. Faith-
promoting stories were perpetuated by family lore, chief of which was about dividing the flour, scarce as it was, with hungry emigrants camped near their home in Salt Lake City. Their father told them never to turn away a hungry person and they didn't. The family firmly believed that the Lord increased their supply of flour as He did the widow's meal in biblical days.
As a part of their early training the Stewart girls were taught to cook, and learned to "stitch a fine seam"; make tallow candles, homemade soap, and to dry and preserve fruit and cure meats. Furthermore, their mother, who had had some training in health problems, particularly hydrotherapy, passed this knowledge on to her children. All of these practical accomplishments stood Ella in, good stead when, in her own right, she became a pioneer mother On the outskirts of civilization.
Time was found in the Stewart household for play and recreation. Ella was fond of telling how the family, while living in Salt Lake, had season tickets to the Salt Lake Theater, and the older children were permitted to attend dances in the Social Hall. There were picnic parties up City Creek Canyon in the summertime, and sleigh rides in winter with tinkling bells and buffalo robes to keep them warm. In Cottonwood the girls learned to skate and swim, even having their own swimming hole.
Levi Stewart was a good businessman and readily accumulated property through his activities as a merchant, farmer and stockman. Ella was thus early schooled in finance and the value of thrift. These traits became a part of her, and throughout her life she manifested a keen business sense, fully understanding the value of money.
Many instances evidencing these qualities appear elsewhere in this volume.
In the spring of 1870, President Young called Levi Stewart to take his family and livestock and move to southern Utah, where he was to preside as Kanab's first bishop. The "call" was accepted without question. Before they left Salt Lake, President Young requested that one of the girls stop off in Toquerville, a small town en route, and learn telegraphy, thereby preparing to be an operator at the new Deseret Telegraph Line out of Kanab. Ella, then fifteen years of age, was chosen as the one for the job. In six weeks time, under the fine tutelage of Sarah Ann Spilsbury, in whose home she lived, Ella mastered the Morse Code which she never forgot to the day of her death. Her first assignment, in December 1871, was on a branch line ending at Pipe Springs in Arizona. This is now a National Monument. It was the first telegraph office in Arizona Territory. Later as operator at Kanab, Ella sent out over the wires to Washington, D.C., the reports of Major John Wesley Powell's Grand Canyon expedition.
An appalling calamity occurred in the Levi Stewart family in the early morning hours of December 14, 1870, when a fire broke out in the back room of their home within the Kanab Fort. (The thick walls of the Fort in which there were no windows or other openings formed one side of the house.) Five of Ella's brothers were sleeping back there and were trapped by the fire with no avenue of escape. Her mother, Margery, rushed in through the flames to waken the children. Ella was closely following but was pulled back by her father at the last moment. All six of them perished as there was no chance, of rescue,
due in part to the explosion of combustibles (kerosene and powder) stored in a room near them, coupled with a high wind, that fanned the blaze.
This tragic event left a deep imprint upon Ella, turning her from a carefree, fun-loving girl of fifteen to a serious woman.
It is felt that Ella's life story--subsequent to her marriage to DAVID K. UDALL--is quite fully portrayed in his "Memoirs." There are, however, certain characteristics she possessed and attainments in her life that should be told. To the end of her days she was a scholar and displayed great intellectual powers; her perception was keen, her memory clear, She was a woman of unusual foresight and good judgment. A close friend said this of her: "Aunt Ella was a queenly woman, a natural hostess, and she truly represented all that a woman should be."
Medical help was rarely available in those early days. Ella, because of her early training and the knowledge gained from a prized book by Dr. Hall, entitled "Health at Home," became known as "an angel of mercy." Isaac Barth, editor of the local paper (who had known her all of his life), editorially paid this tribute at the time of her passing:
Ella Udall's life was dedicated to untiring and unselfish service to her neighbors. She aided the helpless, she ministered to the sick and wounded, and comforted the afflicted. She not only taught the Gospel of the Lord--she lived it.
Ella was blessed with refinement and culture and through her work with the women of the Relief Society she aided in setting high standards in the homes of the people. Dignity and poise were an innate part of her life. She was an ardent advocate of "Woman's Suffrage" and was alert to the need of fostering in the women of her acquaintance a keener sense of civic responsibility.
In her maturity Ella developed a wealth of human understanding which made it possible for her to be patient and forgiving in her dealings with people. Secrets were safe with her. There was always room in her heart and in her home for the motherless, and even the stranger found therein a sanctuary.
Mother's last illness, death and funeral is beautifully covered by Pearl's summation, which follows:
On May 28, 1937, Ella bad been very busy. The $20 worth of plants she bad brought from her beloved Utah to beautify the outside of the big home place must be planted for the great occasion--The Golden jubilee in July--the fiftieth anniversary of the organization of the St. Johns Stake. She wanted the home to be beautiful for the homecoming of her family, as they were expecting a great reunion on that occasion. In the afternoon she had a heart attack and did not rally therefrom. They sent for the doctor, who gave her a sedative. At about one a.m. she suffered a second attack, and as her loved ones gathered around she passed over the great divide.
the desire of her husband that she be laid away like a queen. Her daughters,
assisted by Bertha A. Kleinman, performed this sweet service and saw her
laid away in. all her
The funeral was unusually beautiful. There was no hint of death. It was rather like a pleasant interview of friends and loved ones bad gathered about her. In her behalf death seemed a benediction--a glorious consummation of everything that was beautiful and ennobling in her life. There were no sermons preached. Everything was in eulogy and sweet tribute to her. It seemed that every life bad been richer, ideals loftier and hope of the future made more absolute and certain because of the association with her.
Wifehood and motherhood were, of course, Ella's greatest achievement. The names of her children, coupled with a thumbnail sketch of those who grew to maturity (four died in infancy), follow:
ELLA, AND THEIR CHILDREN
Born and died 8 Nov. 1878 at Kanab, Utah.
2. PEARL UDALL NELSON
PEARL UDALL NELSON
b. 20 June 1880 at Kanab, Utah. Attended B.Y.U. at Provo, later taught school in both Apache and Graham counties. Graduated from Los Angeles College of Osteopathy in June 1910, practiced her chosen profession in St. Johns, Holbrook and Mesa, Arizona. Made an extended trip to England (1912-1913), contacting our English relatives. In 1916 licensed to practice in Utah and moved to S.L.C., where during the balance of her lifetime she carried on an active practice.
Married Joseph Nelson 17 Sept. 1919 in Salt Lake Temple, became a loving stepmother to his seven children, some of whom were of tender years.
Church activities: Always faithful, served as Stake President Y.L.M.I.A., Maricopa Stake, and as President of 21st Ward Relief Society in S.L.C.
brothers and sisters grew up Pearl, being the eldest, mothered them. Having
no children of her own, she "mothered" also the nieces and nephews and
those who were in distress. Truly she was "an angel of mercy" and the Nelson
home at 687 E. Second Ave., S.L.C., became a meeting place and a haven
of refuge for all of the numerous relatives and friends.
3. ERMA UDALL SHERWOOD
ERMA UDALL SHERWOOD
b. 16 Sept. 1882, at St. Johns, A.T. (first of the Udall children born in Arizona); m. Wm. W. Sherwood 2 March 1907, (later that year marriage solemnized in Salt Lake Temple).
Civic duties: member and later president of Holbrook Woman's Club; spent a score of years in P.T.A. work, elected State President Arizona Congress of Parents and Teachers (1941-1943).
L.D.S. Church activities: worked in all the women's auxiliaries; served seven years as President of Holbrook Ward Relief Society; labored three years with husband as East Phoenix Stake Missionary.
Crowning achievement being a good wife and the mother of five children: Marjorie (m. Thornton Casey); Elaine (m. J. Ralston Pace); Wm. Hubbell (m. Martha Mitchell); Mary Eliza (m. I. 0. Rasmussen); Charlotte (m. Paul Hendricks, dec.; In. Leonard I. Wiehrdt).
22 grandchildren, 4 great-grandchildren. (1958)
b. 5 July 1884, at St. Johns, A.T., died 1 Oct. 1885.
5. LUELLA UDALL PACE
LUELLA UDALL PACE
b. 18 Jan. 1886, in St. Johns, Ariz.; (m. 7 Sept. 1911 to Garland H. Pace in Salt Lake Temple); obtained Arizona teacher's certificate and taught in public schools for a time. A lifelong student of literature, art and social sciences; taught
same in Relief Society; member Ensign Stake M.I.A. Board. Scholarship award from University of Utah 20 June 1930; aided in establishment of first Mental Hygiene Organization in Utah.
Died 2 April 1952. Buried by the side of her husband in Salt Lake Cemetery.
Six children: William David (m. Maxine Charles); Udall Wilson (m. (1) Lois Young (div.) and (2) Irma Acord), d. 20 June 1957; Joseph Leon (m. Pauline Clyde); Kathryn (m. James M. Paul); Levi Lincoln (m. Wanda Olsen); John Garland (m. Edna B. Healey).
DAVID KING UDALL, JR.
b. 26 May 1888 at St. Johns, Arizona. (Married 23 Dec, 1917 to, Aurora Mariger, later solemnized in Salt Lake Temple.) Aurora died 31 Dec. 1939.
Church service: Filled two-year mission to England
(1911-1913); served in Bishopric of Holbrook Ward (1924-1926).
Business activities: Mail contractor for many years, both at Holbrook and in Salt Lake City; insurance agent.
Military service: Served in W.W.I.; trained at Camp Funston and Camp Kearney; assigned overseas duty with First Arizona Infantry. In Germany with "Rainbow Division," army of occupation on Rhine, under General Mac Arthur.
Dorothy (m. Lyman K. Peterson); Lawrence Mariger Udall (m. Gloria Justice);
Howard (b. 5 Nov. 1925, d. 20 Sept. 1926); David Gordon Udall.
7. LEVI S. (STEWART) UDALL
LEVI STEWART UDALL
b. 20 Jan. 1891 at St. Johns, Arizona; married 20 June 1914, Louise Lee in Salt Lake Temple. Mature years largely spent in the public service: 28 years in Apache County courthouse . . . admitted to State Bar in 19-92. Served both as judge of the Superior Court (19311946) and Supreme Court (1947-
Business activities at St. Johns: Operated a farm and The Apache Abstract Company.
L.D.S. Church service: Always active, including service as President St. Johns Stake (1922-1945); Patriarch, Phoenix North Stake (1958-
all born at St. Johns, viz: Inez (m. Eugene T. Turley); Elma; Stewart Lee
(m. Ermalee Webb); Morris King (m. Patricia Emery); Eloise (m. Warren G.
Whiting); David Burr (m. Alice Elizabeth Allington).
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