BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF FATHER AND MOTHER BY JAMES HOOD
Contributor: dayle Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
Read at the Hood family reunion August 15, 1924 at Salt Lake City, Utah.
Nicol Hood, son of James Hood and Elizabeth Smith Hood, born November 30, 1828 at Claybarns, Edinburgshire, Scotland. Angelina O’Neil Hood, daughter of Andrew O’Neil (a claim is made that his name is Graham) and Agnes Baird O’Neil, born January 19, 1833 at Calder, Lanarkshire, Scotland.
There is little known of Father up until he, at the age of 16 years, had accepted and secretly embraced the Gospel. His parents, on learning this, were very much surprised, his father indignant. Out of this incident his father required him to renounce his new religion or leave the house. He chose the latter and traveled westward in search of employment. There is little of record of Mother up until the time she and Father met, except she and her family members had also accepted the Gospel. Five years or so after Father’s dismissal from home, he had decided on a change in his life, so he “wooed” and won”. On July 15, 1850 they were married by Elder Joseph Claimants. To them were born the following children: Agnes, Elizabeth, Mary, Nicol, Margaret, Andrew, James, Hane, John, William, and Angelina.
A few years after their marriage, Father met with a serious accident in a coal pit, by which he was blown almost to pieces. A most remarkable case of healing came to him at this time. His life was despaired, he was so bruised and mangled, that the attending physicians held out now hope. Blood poisoning had already set in. He asked for the Elders, they came and administered to him. The testimony of living witnesses to the writer of this sketch is that as the elders removed their hands from his head the mortified flesh fell from his left shoulder, and that during the sealing of the ordinance it has been testified to, by those taking part in the administration, that they heard his bones grind into their places.
Six weeks from the day of this accident he, in company with Mother, walked into the street and were greeted by his attending physician, D. R. Clark.
Father was a man of exceeding faith in the Gospel and always had a reverence for the Priesthood. In his testimony of the Gospel he was never known to waver.
In a crippled condition—the loss of the left arm and with only two fingers and thumb on the right hand, he reared his family in the midst of poverty.
He was given, as an indemnity from the Monkland (?) Iron and Steel Company a life’s position as watchmen at night around the Peep-o-day pit at eleven shillings per weeks with free house and coal.
In the midst of these days of poverty he was approached by a committee from the Presbyterian Church of Calderbank where most of their children were born and raised, and offered the Presentorship (Chorister) of the Church, with free house and garden. This was some inducement to a man in his condition and circumstances, for it offered better salary with improved surroundings and better house in which to live. He was gifted with an excellent Baritone voice, was something of a musician and poet and could have filled the position most capable. When told by this committee that to fill this position, it would be necessary for him to renounce his religion and become a member of this Presbyterian Church, his emphatic “never” came with suddenness that it surprised and shocked this pious committee.
His greatest sorrow came on March 1, 1874 when Mother from this life to her reward. She had always been by him; in his accident and the subsequent trials that followed; his companion in life, his councilor in trial, the mother of his children, she, who stood by him as only a wife and mother can, was not snatched from him by the hand of death. Agnes, the oldest of 11 children, woman grown; Angelina, the youngest and only a few weeks old.
No one of the family will ever forget that day. It was truly a house of mourning. Mother, too, had an unwavering faith in her Redeemer and an abiding testimony of the Gospel. Firm in her conviction of duty, bore her trials without murmur. Her first impulse, to care for her children with a love that was divine. Her outstanding characteristics, patience, kindness and devotion, drew her closer and closer year by year to her friends. She possessed a high sense of morality which enabled her to imbue her children with a legacy of eternal value.
No tongue has ever told all the trials they endured while pressing on o the goal of their cherished faith, i.e. to rear their children in fear and admonition of God. They knew little of life’s pleasures other than the joy that comes from a consistent life. They had known to an extreme degree the keenness of hunger, for many times they went without food that the “barnies” might be supplied.
They were ever ready and capable in defense of the truth, of firm character and high moral ideals.
They taught chastity by being chaste, fidelity by being true to every trust reposed in them. Consistent as Latter-Day Saints, constant in their devotion of its requirements and believed all its laws to be the plan of Redemption.
Soon after Mother’s death, Father moved the family to Benhar, Linlithgoshire. Here a branch of the Church was organized and he became its president. As the few remaining months of his life passed, they brought grief and sickness. A stroke necessitated for him to return (? Unreadable) to New (?) Lanarkshire where he too was taken from our lives on the 18th of November 1875 to join his companion.
The work of their endowments has been finished; also the sealing of all members of the family (except one) has been accomplished.
There are many memories sacred and dear to us, chestering around Calderbank, the Monkland Wool, the Auld Forge Row, the Brae and the Burn. Dear as these memories are to us, there are the forms of those that life made double dear. They are part of us. We live now in the fond hope that they will be ours still throughout eternity.
No one of us need let his dead droop in shame for being a descendant of such parents, no one of us but can lift his head in pride for such parents. We are happy in this assurance the Gospel gives, they are ours, we are theirs forever.
The older members of the family will recall many of the virtues of these dearest dead. They, too, will recall many incidents and trials that the younger members cannot know, yet we can all recall the songs that were often sung, the admonitions given, the prayers offered, all of which have helped us become what we are.
Were our children, or our children’s children to return to our native land, they would learn that Father and Mother came from honorable people and whose names are held in sacred respect. Therefore, the Hood Family Organization can point with a high sense of pride, to its progenitors, and live in the hope and keen anticipation that sometimes, somewhere, in the providences of God we shall meet with them and live with them in peace and eternal progress.
Poem written by James Hood for Margaret Hood Smith
Contributor: dayle Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
THE PATHWAY OF LIFE
To my sister Maggie on her 75th birthday
5 February 1858 to 1933
By James Hood, her brother
“Tis a long, long trail you’ve traveled, Sister,
Life’s pathway leads always up hill;
The burden of life was made light, Sister,
You were true to the Master’s will.
They who adhere to the Savior’s decree,
At the end of life’s trail find victory.
In faith you have never faltered, Sister,
“Mid the trials of all these years;
The steady unseen hand of God, Sister
Was brushing aside all the fears.
The joy of you faith, ‘neath cumbersome load,
Brings bless and reward at the end of life’s road.
The love of your home-folks and home, Sister,
Is still loyal and warm and true:
‘Twas a power unseen but felt, Sister
“Twas God’s way to bring you up through,
These same dear home-folks would lighten your load
And bless with their love to the end of life’s road.
There’s a heart-song throbbing within, sister,
“Tis the song of the pure in heart,
A life well-spent brings real content, Sister,
And a fountain of bliss “twill start.
The tiniest rosebud that hangs near a thorn
May flush into bloom ere the dawn of morn.
At the end of life’s road, as you go, Sister,
There are dear ones waiting for you,
To welcome you there, and love you, Sister,
As in lifetime they used to do.
The end of life’s roadway one cannot see,
It merges right into eternity.