Family History--Jessie Helen Shepherd Miller
Contributor: milesmeyer Created: 11 months ago Updated: 11 months ago
Monica Miler revised 10/4/95
3rd period Melody Ann Miller
May 16, 1982
Jessie Helen Shepherd was born in Springville, Utah, on September 11, 1919. Her family later moved to what was called Mapleton Bench, or Mapleton. This was her home until she married and moved to Provo, Utah. Helen attended school in Springville. She was at Jefferson Grade School for the first four grades. For fifth and sixth grades, Helen attended Washington School. She was at Springville High School for seventh though twelfth grade, where she graduated. Helen did not attend college.
Helen really enjoyed her school days. Her attendance was pretty near perfect for those twelve years. She never wanted to miss a day if she could help it. Helen enjoyed her many friends even more than the school work itself. She didn’t particularly excel in any one subject. Her strengths were in music, reading, math, spelling, and shorthand. Helen ws average in most other subjects.
Helen lived two miles from school and, consequently, got plenty of exercise walking to and from school each day and church each Sunday. She says her parents didn’t “taxicab” them around like parents do nowadays. If they wanted to do anything, they “hoofed it.” Helen’s parents’ transportation was by horse and buggy and sometimes wagon. She can remember her first car. It was a Model T. When Helen’s family got this car, they sure thought they “had it made.”
Helen’s family home was a two-room, red-brick house with an outhouse. Later her father built what they called a “grainery room.” When this was connected to the house, their rooms totaled four. Helen’s family had a one-acre lot on which sat their home, barn, chicken coop, pig pen, a large garage, and usually a big stack of hay. They always had one or two milk cows. The family had chickens for eggs and plenty to eat. They raised about two pigs a year to kill for meat. Helen always hated it when the time came to kill the pigs because they squealed so loud. He mother made sausage that made it all worth it to her.
Helen’s family had two big pits in which was stored apples, carrot, potatoes, parsnips, turnips, onions, and so on. Most of their living came off their own acre of land.
Helen’s mother was a good seamstress and made most of her children’s clothes. They dressed fairly nice most of the time.
Helen’s family was very close knit. He aunts, uncles, cousins, and other extended family were as close as her immediate family on both her parents’ sides. They liked to get together for Sunday dinners and have “good fun.” Ice cream was the climax of the day. They would all eat until they felt they would bust. For the Shepherds, family reunions were a must every year. Helen’s grandfather Shepherd played for years at their many dances. An orchestra played for their family reunion dances.
Helen never had much opportunity to travel before she was married. She always loved to dance. This was her funnest recreation as she got into her teens. Helen was a happy person and it didn’t fake much to entertain her. She doesn’t remember having many frustrations, as people seem to have today. Helen always felt loved by her family, relations, and friends. She feels that love is really important in one’s life.
When Helen was young, she helped in fruit picking and was quite fast. Needless to say, she always got that job. When she was sixteen, Helen worked at the Eddington Cannery in Springville. This is where she earned a little money of her own to spend.
To get water, Helen’s family had to go across the road and down a little hill, across an irrigation ditch and a field to a fresh water spring. When they finally had the water piped to their home, a tap was installed just outside the kitchen door. The family all thought it was really great.
Helen was fairly old by the time the power lines got out to the farmhouses. She remembers using a lantern to read by.
Helen had a dog named Rover. He used to run to meet then when they would come home. Rover would run up to the car and bark. Unfortunately, one day when they came home, Rover ran up to greet then and got caught under the tires and was killed.
Jerry was Helen’s first child. He was born in their apartment located at 245 East, 600 North, in Provo, Utah, on April 2, 1939. Dr. John Anderson, from Springville, delivered Jerry. Helen’s nurse, Mrs. Wilson, a close friend of Helen’s assisted him. She came and stayed with Helen during the day until the doctor came, and until after Jerry was born. People were passing by, on their way to church at the time.
Helen’s second child, Carolyn, was supposed to be delivered in he American Fork Hospital. However, her doctor was ill when they arrived and they were sent to the Lehi Hospital. They barely made it in time.
Helen’s third child, William, was born in the Spanish Fort Hospital, July 7, 1948. Jon Steven was her fourth child. He was born in the Utah Valley Hospital on August 6, 1949. Jon lived thirty-two hours and died on August 7, 1949. This was really hard for Helen and her husband Ralph. It was a year or more before they could pull themselves together.
Eight years later, Helen and Ralph had another son. Gregory Lee was born on November 2, 1957, at the Utah Valley Hospital.
Ralph and Helen have done much traveling and camping by themselves. They have enjoyed this very much, although they miss having the kids home with them. Greg is the only child left at home. He takes care of things when Helen and Ralph are gone.