Personal History of Ernest Long By Esther Crowther Long February 2, 1977
Contributor: trishkovach Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
Ernest Long was born April 19, 1890 in Richiti, Promollo, Italy, to James Henry and Jaqueline Long. He Lived there until he was three years old when his parents and many of their neighbors of that community, with their minister, left there and came to the USA for religious freedom, as for centuries the people in the area of Piedmont, Italy, had been persecuted by the Catholic Church.
In Italy they were members of the Hugenot-Waldensian Church. When they came to the United States they established a Hugenot-Waldensian Church in Valdese, North Carolina, where they first settled. Their life was hard there as all they had were crude hand tools to clear the dense growth of heavily wooded lands, and the rainfall and warm climate caused the wild vegetation to grow faster than they could control it, making it difficult to raise enough food for their needs.
Some of their friends had previously gone to Provo, Utah, and had written to the Long family that conditions there were good, so after about eight years they sold everything they had and took a train for Provo, Utah. Upon arriving there in 1901 or 1902, a friend from the old country, who had settled in Provo years before, a Paul Soulier, let them live in two rooms upstairs of his house until they could get a place of their own.
They were very poor and the children, Elisa and Ernest, went right out to get work at anything they could do, in order to help feed the family. Ernest was eleven years old then, and hadn’t obtained much schooling in North Carolina. Here he entered the Page School, when time permitted, but was not able to get much of an education.
He worked, as a boy, for Will Brereton on his farm, and also for Will and Wilford Penrod on their farm. These men, he always said, were the ones who taught him how to work, as they were hard working men and good farmers, took good care of their tools, machinery, and animals. They fed him well, and he felt he had a good home there.
When he grew older he worked in the coal mines for a time. He then went to work for The Provo Pressed Brick Company, later named The Provo Brick and Tile Company. This was hard work, but he liked it, and although they never paid good wages, the work was steady and he managed to live and buy a home with it. He worked at this brick yard about fifty years.
In 1912, he met Esther Crowther wile driving down Academy Avenue one evening in his new top buggy drawn by a little black horse. He was with his friend, Michael Long, and they invited Esther and her friend, Edna Barry, to go for a ride with them. That was the beginning of a two-year courtship and many delightful horse and buggy rides.
On February 4, 1914, Esther and Ernest were married in Provo, Utah, by the County Clerk, Clarence Wood. Later that day they took a train for Ogden, Utah, where they spent three or four days with Ernest’s brother Edward and his wife Mattie, for heir honeymoon.
Ernest had saved enough money to buy furniture enough to furnish two rooms of his father’s house that they were permitted to use for one year until they could build a little three-room house of their own on a one-acre lot that Esther’s father had given them for a wedding present. This was during World War I days and everything was high priced. They borrowed money from the bank at 10% interest with which to build their house.
After struggling to pay the loan off, they bought four more adjoining acres from Esther’s father, giving them a five-acre farm where they raised a good garden, had a jersey milk cow and a horse, also chickens and pigs. This was most of their living and helped a great deal.
Up until this time Ernest did not belong to the LDS church, but joined on Feb 10, 1918. Later in September, 1934, they went to the Salt Lake Temple and took out their endowments and had their two boys sealed to them. Ernest was ordained a Priest, then Elder, and was High Priest for the last many years of his life.
He was an honest man, always worried until his bills and debts were paid, and didn’t like to be obliged to anyone. He was a yard worker and a good gardener, kept a good clean vegetable garden, and a neat lawn, hedge and flower garden around the house. An uncle came to visit from time to time and he always said, “I would hat to be a weed trying to grow in your garden.” He was a fast worker and could accomplish as much in one hour as most men could in two.
In 1950, they sold their home in Provo, and built a brick house on a one-acre lot in Orem, Utah. Here he planted a mixed family orchard, some raspberries, strawberries, etc., and had a beautiful place. With his hard work, he had it look like a Garden of Eden.
He retired as Yard Foreman from the brick yard at 68 years of age, and devoted his time to his lovely home. At age 79, he suffered a stroke from which he never fully recovered, and was an invalid for four years.
Ernest Long, father of Cleo Mary Long Martin, Riverside, California; Jesse Ernest Long, Milford, Utah; Richard Crowther Long, Orem, Utah; Grandfather of eleven grandchildren, and great grandfather of eleven great grandchildren at this writing, passed away at Age 83. He was buried in the Provo City Cemetery.