George Davis 1876-1955 & Pat Nielsen 1897-1993
Contributor: almathe3rd Created: 7 months ago Updated: 7 months ago
George A Davis was born July 25th, 1876 in Holden, Millard, Utah, the son of Thomas and Sophia Vickery Davis. George’s father died when he was 16 and he then became the bread winner of the family providing for his mother and sisters. He worked as a cowboy, teamster, bartender and miner. He was qualified as a carpenter, brick maker and mechanic. As a boy he got into trouble in Huntington one time when he shot out the city street lights with his .22 rifle.
Patience Hope (Pat) Nielsen was born in Fairview, Sanpete, Utah October 27th, 1897 the daughter of Niels J and Minnie Schiller Nielsen. Shortly after her birth she with her family moved to Blue Valley (now Giles), Wayne, Utah to a small three room log cabin beside the Dirty Devil River. They went bare foot in the summer and for winter shoes they wore Sears & Roebuck catalog shoes, when they had money to buy them. Because of the families inability to make a living there they moved to Sunnyside, Utah in 1904. There her father and older brother Jim went to work in the mines making bricks for the coke ovens and taking care of their mule teams.
In Sunnyside the family made their home in a dugout in the side of a hill and a large tent. Her mother took in boarders to help with expenses and save some money for their return to Blue Valley. After two years of hard work the family again packed their wagon and returned to Blue Valley to try again.
The girls made dolls out of corn stalks and played along the muddy river with their brothers. They wore long dresses and sun bonnets, the hoods of which had been stiffened by dunking them in the liquid of the boiling molasses. In their poverty, often they only thing they had to eat was molasses and bread.
For one Christmas the girls, Pat and Mary, had prayed hard for dolls and new slippers. This was a hard request for such a poverty area and yet they kept up their prayers knowing their father in heaven would answer them. The store in town was very small and most things had to be ordered and come in from Salt Lake City. Their mother knowing of the girls’ desire went to work and made the dolls and slippers out of a very pretty velvet coat she owned and a pair of old boots. What a delightful Christmas the girls had with the good things sent from heaven, for they did not find out the real story until many years later.
The timber, rock and mud dam that was used to hold water for irrigation seemed to give way every year under the pressure of high water and flash floods. With its lost in 1909 there was a flood that destroyed the Nielsen’s entire orchard. So the local church leaders released the people from their mission calls and encouraged then to move else were to earn a living. The Nielsens moved to the Orem Bench and Niels built a home and farmed an orchard where the Orem Mall and parking lot now stands.
There Pat met Janet Davis who was married to her older brother Jim and as they packed peaches Janet talked Pat into sending peaches to her brother George and writing to him while he was out on the reservation near Roosevelt, Utah. After George wrote a thank you note they continued to correspond and when Pat moved with her family to Roosevelt she and George met and were married in Vernal, Utah in January 1915.
George and Pat rented a farm in Cedarview, Utah and there my father June was born in June 1916. Just after their marriage George helped Pat’s father to build a brick kiln from which, with the Lord’s help, they were able to bake and then sell over 25,000 bricks. Shortly after his birth of their oldest son June, George and Pat moved to Price, Utah where George began to work in the mines as a foreman, a position he held in many of the coal mines of Eastern Utah. For a time the family lived in Sunnyside, Utah where George worked for the railroad as a foreman, laying track.
They were one of the first families to own a car in Wattis, Utah and when the Davis’ went to town there was always a load of people who wished to go with them. After working in the mines in north-east Utah for a number of years George was forced, by his health, to move to Southern Utah. For a couple of years he owned a farm in Gunlock, Utah and then he moved to Pioche, Nevada where he went to work in the silver mines first as and foreman and then when the mines shut down during the depression he worked as a watchman.
Their home in Pioche, Nevada was made out of railroad ties and during the depression Pat would make cornmeal bread and cereal out of the mash the government gave her boys to feed the chickens with. George was never very active in the LDS Church but he saw to it that his children attended all their meetings and Pat worked in the MIA writing many of their programs they put on. In the fall of 1928 George and Pat went to the St. George Temple, with their family and were sealed for time and all eternity.
In 1954 Pat and George moved to Southern California to be near their older children who had married and moved there to find jobs during WWII and shortly thereafter. They lived in Hermosa Beach and then Redondo Beach with their youngest sons Niel and Rex and their two daughters Beulah & Mary and their children. George passed away in 1955 in Hermosa Beach but Pat continued on with a house full of children and grandchildren always keeping a pan cake on the cupboard.
In 1970 she moved back to Orem, Utah to be near her family who had moved back to Utah to start their own businesses and there she shared a home with her daughter Mary until she passed away in 1994 at the age of 97 years.