Life Story of Gudmund Gudmunson
Contributor: Simini Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
( This story is taken from events and stories remembered by his daughters Nena and Rebecca)
Gudmund Gudmunson was born January 20, 1842 to Gudmund and Solrum Kelilsson Gudmunson in Sandhusvallur, Eyjafjalla, Rangarvalla, Iceland. They remember him having two sisters and one brother. He was born on a farm and during his boyhood fished and tended the sheep. He told his children of sitting in the manger to study his books. The farm houses of that time were built above the mangers for the cattle, all under one roof.
Gudmund was a man of about medium height and medium complexion with sandy colored whiskers. He was a level-headed, mild-tempered man and easy to get along with. He learned many languages through his contact as an inspector of the Foreign Ships that came to port.
He married Johanna Harvardsson October 14, 1866. They had ten children (9 girls and 1 boy) by this marriage. The children were Solrum (Lula), Johanna, Invald, Ragnhilda, Ingveldar (Nena), Gudbjorg (Rebecca), Gudmund, Mary, Katherine, Johnia Steimum. Four of their children including the son died in infancy, and there were two sets of twins. Johanna had one son (Sam or Simon) by a previous marriage to Simund Olafsson, who drowned at sea while fishing. They tell of many fisherman losing their lives at sea.
The family was converted to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints by a missionary from Spanish Fork, Aynard Erickson, who had once lived in Iceland. They were baptized in Iceland and again by Al Beck in the mill race in Spanish Fork.
None of Gudmund’s extended family joined the church. They were ostracized by their families and neighbors for joining the Mormon Church. They made immediate plans to go to Utah. Because of the neighbors objections they refused to buy their possesions and had to sell at a great sacrifice. Gudmund had faith that if it was God’s will that they should go to Utah, that a way would be provided. They felt that through his prayers a man did come and purchase the property, allowing him to bring all the children to Utah, except the four oldest girls. They were left with friends until they were able to send for them.
It was a six week journey over the ocean and then travel on the Narrow Gauge railroad train from New York to Provo, Utah. They arrived there on the 24th day of July 1886. They stayed at the Brigham Young Academy over the weekend until Gruther Arnneson came with a covered wagon and took them to Spanish Fork. They lived with friends until housing and work could be found. They were treated badly by the people there because they could neither speak nor understand the language. Soon they were able to understand the English language.
Father worked at threshing wheat and was paid in wheat. It was about the equivalent of 24 cents a day. He also worked as a section hand on the railroad. They tell of him walking from Spanish Fork to the mouth of the canyon to obtain work. He later worked as a mason (brick layer) and laid the floor in the flour mill and the brick for the school house on the hill. He was called to lay many chimneys.
All the family worked when and where they could. It was hard for the children to get their schooling for they worked to provide for themselves. The family lived on the mother’s wages and what the children could earn. They saved the father’s wages to bring the rest of the family to Utah.
In 1902 they went to Raymond, Alberta, Canada during the Mormon church expansion program and came back to the United States in about 1909. They lived with Nena and family in Mapleton, Utah for about 5 years and with Rebecca for about 5 years.
He was a very religious man and had many faith promoting experiences. He was a great believer and had great faith in prayer. At one time when some of the Saints treated the family so badly father doubted if the Church was right so he prayed to the Lord to guide him and to show him the way. This he soon found and spent his entire life working in the church, paying his honest tithes and offerings.
He went blind before he died in August 24, 1919 at Mapleton, Utah and is buried in Spanish Fork, Utah.
Life Story of Solrum (Lula) Gudmunson Johnson
Contributor: Simini Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
[I found this history amongst many of my Dad's files (Bruce Lavone Johnson) after he died. I believe it may have just come from his memory since he quite close to her and he most certainly heard these stories from her.]
(Lula) Solrum was born October 11, 1867 in a little town on Westmann Islands, Iceland. She had an older half brother. His name was Simon/Sam Simondson. His father drowned before he was born. Her brothers and sisters were Hannah, Ragntrilda, Ingireldur, (twins:)Yugbjorg and Johnny, Katherine and Mary. John died at 2 weeks and Katherine died when she was three years old.
Vashmanssigme was a little seacoast town where they raised a lot of wild berries around the foothills. There were no high mountains, only rolling low hills. The chief occupation was hunting birds, fishing and raising sheep.
Lula’s father was a fisherman, then he worked as an inspector of the Foreign Ships. He also worked in a store up until the time he left Iceland. Vashmansigme was a really beautiful place, grass growing all over the hills. They lived about three blocks from the ocean. There was a big stone wall that they built to keep the water back so as not to do damage. They used to go out on the little fisherman’s boats and ride along the coast. One man was in charge of the fishing boats and would tell the men when it was time to go fishing. All the houses had a separate name. Lula’s home was called “The House of Paris”. They raised their own vegetables, had their own cow and a few sheep. They would have lots of snow in the winter and for two or three months of the year they didn’t see the sun. But it was never extremely cold.
Before the big ships began to bring things to the coastal cities, her father wove nearly all the material for their clothing on a loom. They would shear the sheep, color and spin the yarn and when everyone went to bed her father would sit up and weave the cloth. He made beautiful plaids, using many different colors.
They had swimming and weaving parties while the men loved to go hunting birds together.
Lula’s mother had a brother and sister that came to live with them because their father died when they were small. They helped a lot with the work. Lula’s paternal grandfather lived on an island and raised sheep and cows. They had to go on a boat to visit them. Her father had two sisters and one brother.
Lula’s parents were Lutherans. The minister visited each home once a week and each child was required to read so many passages from the Bible each week. Each parent had to teach their own children to read so they could read the Bible. They went to the Lutheran church every Sunday. Her parents were very strict as were the parents of the other children. There was no need for policemen or jails as everyone minded their own business.
They celebrated Christmas in a sacred way. For a week before Christmas, her mother and the people who worked for them, baked cakes, bread, fried donuts and smoked meat (similar to baloney). They made enough food to last all through the holidays. The only Christmas tree they had was made out of wood with one stick in the center and sticks nailed out from the center stick to form a tree. Then her father would bore holes in the sticks to put candles in them. This was a beautiful sight to the children. A week after New Years is when all the parties were held and the fun began. They always had two or three women hired in the home to help do the work and take care of the children. Her mother would help her father clean the fish and help in spinning and weaving and other work that needed to be done.
When Lula was a child, it was said that there were people who lived in the cliffs under the ground. Every once in a while someone would see them and talk with them. Whether they belonged to the lost tribes or not they didn’t know but her father told them many times that when he used to herd cows when he was a boy, he used to see a lady come to get water and when he would get close to where she was, she would vanish. When Lula was a child they had a little green mossy place where they played and they called it church. One night a person came to one of the homes of the children’s parents and told them the children were disturbing them and they were not to play there anymore. One lady used to always set a quart of milk out every night before she went to bed and it would be gone in the morning. Lula’s mother was a good friend to these people so she knew that it was true. It was only certain people who were permitted to talk to these mysterious people. Lula’s father said when he was a child he saw a woman hanging out clothes and when he went close to where she was he could not see her. He told his parents about this and they told him never to go near them again for it was only certain people who were permitted to see these people and talk to them. It is hard to tell if this is just superstition , but it does seem to be true.
Two missionaries came to Iceland and converted Lula’s parents to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints. Eric Erickson was the name of the missionary and he came from Cleveland Emery Co. Utah. Her father joined the church and was baptized. Then all the people turned against him. Her mother was baptized and then 2 or 3 months after they were baptized they left for Utah. None of the children were baptized until they arrived in Utah. Her father and mother were re-baptized. (Not sure if Solrum was baptized in Iceland). Her father didn’t have enough money for all of the family to migrate at the same time. Lula was 20 years old and married when she came to Utah. Her husband was killed climbing a mountain. She later married John Peter Johnson February 26, 1891 in Provo, Utah. Eventually they immigrated to Canada where she was a practical nurse as well as a mother to her children Sina, William (died as a child), Nathan, Annie, Mary (died as a child), Leonard (died as a child), Ellen, Genenva, Lyman, Mabel, and Esther. The children said that she always made the girls a special dress for Easter, July 1st and Christmas.
She delivered many babies in the Taber area as she was a mid-wife and a practical nurse.
She was known as a good cook, especially her home-made pies. She was a friendly neighbor. Her children joked that she put her neighbors to sleep at night and woke them up in the morning. She visited her neighbors regularly. She was very concerned about their welfare.
She died March 8, 1949 in Taber, Alberta, Canada.
Ena Gudmundson Carrick
Contributor: Simini Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
By Shirley Ann Marchbanks Harris
Written in 1957 by Ena Gudmundson Carrick as she told it to Shirley Ann Marchbanks Harris, a granddaughter. My age at writing his story is 82 1⁄2 years and I am enjoying good health and a sound mind.
I was born on the 29th day of December 1874 on a little island just off the coast of Iceland called Vestmannaeyja, Iceland. My father was a ship’s pilot. He worked on the coast going out to the ships and checking whether they had any disease aboard before he would permit the ships to come into the dock. In order to do this work, he learned seven different languages in order that he could converse with the ships from the different countries. Sometimes when the weather was too bad to bring the ships in he would stay out for two or three days.
I was born in a two-story house which had two large rooms downstairs and a pantry and three bedrooms on the second floor. My mother always had good things in the pantry and I well remember this particular room.
My sister Becky and I used to bring fish from the docks on a flat board which we carried. We used to do this to help out the family. Mother and Father would salt them down and keep them over the winter to cure. They would take them out and scrub them and lay them out to dry. When this process was finished they would take them to the market and sell them. My father took care of these fish along with his job on the ship docks.
At this time, my sister, Lula, Hannah, and Tilda, who were older than I, worked away from doing housework in other people’s homes. My brother, Simund, who was the oldest in the family, lived at home as well as Becky, myself and two smaller sisters Nona and Mary. While my brother was in Iceland, he used to go out on boats and bring in fish. My mother at this time kept house for this large family.
When I was about 9 or 10 years old, my folks send me to a private school where I learned to read and write in the Iceland language. The man who taught me was crippled and when I used to write with my left hand he would beat me to make me use my right hand. I studied under this man for about a year.
The Latter-Day Saints Missionaries came to our house when I was about 10 or 11 years old. About a year after the missionaries came my Mother and Father were baptized members of the church. It was soon after this that they decided to come to America.
The trip to America took a lot of thought and effort on the part of the family to get enough money together to come. In order to raise part of this money, they sold their home which also had a nice garden spot and was one of the of the nicest places around. My father and mother, my only brother, and my three youngest sister were the first to make the trip. They came in approximately the year 1886 in the Spring.
At this time, myself and my three older sisters were left behind to do the housework in various peoples homes to earn our board and keep. The people who I lived with had a big store to take care of. They had a family of five boys and one girl. They employed three older women to help with their work. My particular job was to run errands. They were very good to me while I lived with them. At this time I was able to visit with my older sisters.
About a year after my father came to America, he send money for me to come to America. At that time there was a family by the name of Johnson who were going to this country and I was allowed to come along with them, they would look after me some, but I was more or less on my own. (This family later had a boy who was born in Spanish Fork by the name of Mark Johnson, and another son Will Johnson who worked in the Courthouse in Provo.)
The first day out on the Ocean, I was overcome by a dreadful case of seasickness. I had to look out for myself pretty much. It took our ship a week to come to Liverpool, England. We stayed at Liverpool for about a day and one half and then were able to get another ship which took 15 1⁄2 days to get to New York, America. We then took a train which brought us to Salt Lake City, Utah. Then we took a train on to Spanish Fork where the Johnson’s took me to see my folks. A year later my three older sisters came. When we all were here we were baptized members of the Church in the Spanish Fork River.
At this time I stayed with my family for a week, but due to the expense I went to work for my board and keep with a family who promised to send me to school. I got very little school however, as this family was always finding reasons for keeping me home to do various tasks and take care of their home. I stayed with these people about a year and then went to work for a family by the name of Jones who had 14 in the family including me. While I was working there, Mr. Jones was a farmer and owned one of the largest farms in the town. Mrs. Jones was a very particular women in regards to her housekeeping and during the year and a half that I worked there I worked very hard. The floors were just wood and we had to keep them scrubbed snowwhite. We used to wash in the mornings from about 9 in the morning until about 10 o’clock at night, scrubbing the clothes on the board and cleaning them so they would look white on the line. With this big family we used to have to scour the tableware with brick every morning to be able to set a good table. Her husband, however, did all the mixing of the bread. For this hard work, I used to get $1.50 a week and out of this I had to buy clothing. The money I was paid with was called script and I could only spend it at certain stores.
One day while I was working here, I was sweeping the yard which had no grass but I raised a little dust and she got after me. At this time I was so fed up with her constantly being after me to do everything just so that I threw the broom down and said I was quitting.
After quitting my job at Mrs. Jones, I went to work in the shoe shop where I worked with anther girl, putting buttons on the shoes and making eyelet’s and sewed the whole top part of the shoe. We did both mens and womens shoes, but the men working there put the soles on the shoes. At this place I got Saturdays off and was paid $2 per week. At this time Mrs. Jones sent for me to come and bathe the children on Saturdays and black her stove, for this she used to pay me a dollar for the day, she was so glad to have me come back to do her stove for her.
I worked in the shoe shop for about two years and at this time I was able to attend Mutual and go out for an evening and stayed at my mother’s home. I then went to Scofield where I worked in a Boarding house, but did not stay there very long as the work was very hard. So I went back to Springville and went to work for a lady by the name of Mrs. Deal, worked for her about six months. I then went to Price, Utah on the train and from Price we went by Stagecoach to Nine-Mile, where I worked for a man by the name of Ed Lee who was an Uncle to J. Bracken Lee. He would tease me and give me a bad time. We worked very hard cooking for the officers who came in from Fort Duschene. There were also Negros who we had to cook for and many people from all over who traveled though Nine-Mile until I was about 20 years old and then I went back to Scofield, Utah and worked again in a boarding house. It was at this time I met Jack Carrick, the man I was to marry.
He had decided he was going to marry me before he had even met me. My sister Becky was working at Winter Quarters and had showed my picture to Jack and he told her he was going to marry me. It was just after I met him that we started to go together and about six months later we got married. We were married at Winter Quarters, Utah by Bishop Thomas J. Parmley (Jack’s sister’s husband). He also blessed all of our children except Hannah. At this time Jack was working in the mine and making $1.75 for a ten-hour day. We rented a place for about six months after we were married and paid $5.00 a month rent.
Then one of the miners, who had a nice home, he stole some explosives and was fired from the mine. He was pressed to sell the house where he lived which I had wanted to buy, so I went to a boarder of one of my sister’s who was also a good friend and asked to borrow money to buy the house. They wanted $130.00 for the house and he let me have the money and after two months we were able to pay him back what we had borrowed and the house was ours. The ground was not ours, however, as it was owned by the mining company. This house was a three room home, with enough lumber to build an other room. It was in this home that my children Isabell, Little Johnny and Helen were born. When Helen was two years old the mining company wanted the ground back so they gave us enough lumber to build on more of their ground. We had enough lumber to build a 4 room house with a pantry. Little Johnny was born in the second home, he died when he was four months old.
In the year 1900, There was a terrible explosion at the mine in Winter Quarters. There were 200 men killed in this explosion. At this time Jack was working night shift at the mine and the explosion occurred at 10 o’clock in the morning, which was fortunate for us. There both fathers and sons killed in this explosion. Some of the boys were as young as 15 years of age.
In about the year 1903, we sold our home and all our furnishings and went to Canada. At this time my sister None and her husband Leo Harmer were already in Canada homesteading. We left Winter Quarters and traveled to Salt Lake City, where we stayed with or the home of Williams. Helen, at this time was very sick and the doctor had given her no hope to live. At this time Mr. Robert Williams administered to Helen and blessed her with health and strength that she would get well and someday go through the Salt Lake Temple. At this time she is my only child to be married in the Salt Lake Temple.
When the quarantine was lifted in July, we continued on our way and went to Raymond, Alberta, Canada and stayed at this place for a year where we farmed with Leo and None. The following year we went to Taber, Alberta where we took up a homestead. At this time we had a cow and a team of horses and took care of 150 acres. It was while we were in Taber that Hannah was born. About three weeks before she was to be born in March, I went by wagon to stay at my sister Lula’s in Raymond where Hannah was born. When she was about two weeks old I went back again by wagon to Taber. I took my three other children with me at this time.
When they were plowing and clearing the land to plow, they had burned some brush to clear the field but the fire jumped the furrows and started a prairie fire, which took about a day and a half to put this fire out with many men working all night to stop it. It soon burned itself out after it reached the river.
Jack was a good surveyor and at this time he surveyed a coal mine for a mining company which turned out to be one of the biggest coal mines in Taber. They struck a vein of coal four feet wide. We worked hard on the farm at this time getting very little money for our efforts.
We stayed in Taber for about four years and at this time decided to return to Winter Quarters and we bought us a nice home here on the company ground. While we were in Winter Quarters, my children Florence, little Joe and Bill were was born. Little Joe lived to be a year and a half and died of what was known as inflammati on of the bowels. It was while we lived here that I lived neighbors to Mrs. Tally Evans, who was a very good neighbor to me. And we had many good times together with our children. We lived in Winter Quarters for about five years and we then moved to Mapleton, Utah where we bought another home and ground and lived for many years, even after Jack passed away December 25, 1941. We moved to Mapleton mainly because Jack did not want to raise our children in a mining camp. So our children were mostly raised in Mapleton where they all married. Jack stayed in Winter Quarters and worked until the mines were closed down. He boarded at Winter Quarters and came home on weekends when he could.
At this time work was quite scarce as the depression was on so he did odd jobs when he could. At this time I started to go out into peoples’ homes and take care of women who were confined after childbirth. Isabel, Helen, Tom, Hannah, Florence and Bill were all married at this time. I went into a good many homes doing this work and there was plenty of work of this kind. I also went into the homes of all my children and cared for their children when they were born. I helped bring about 225 children into the world during these few years.
About this time my older boy Tom disappeared from home which made us all feel very bad. We never heard from him from that time nor were we able to find out what happened to him. It was on Christmas Day, December 1941, that my husband Jack passed away. It was very sudden as he had never been right down from any illness, but he had not felt too good for sometime. This was a great loss to me. Being in good health myself I continued to go out on nursing cases until I reached the age of 65. It was about this time I took out my citizenship papers and became a naturalized citizen of the United States having been a Canadian citizen. I continued to lived in my home and do my housework until the year 1952 or 53 when I took an apartment in Springville. My home at this time had no plumbing on the inside and was heated by coal heat which made it a job in the winter months to keep pipes from freezing and to keep the home comfortable. This was my main reason for taking an apartment. The past few years I have lived alone visiting my children at times. I enjoy very much T.V.
Grandma Carrick continued to live in Springville until she decided she needed to be with someone. She went to a Rest Valley View at 317 South 400 East. Here due to a fall she began and did not enjoy very good health from then until her death. Was preceded in death by her youngest son just the year before and had 27 grandchildren and 66 great grandchildren and at least 5 great great grandchildren. This was retype by Kip Peterson a great great grandson to be put on the web pages. If anyone as any facts and dates, I would be very happy to add the info and if anyone has account of Jack Carrick feel free to send it to me, so I can add his stories. I was very proud to retype this stories. We surely had one wonderful Grandmother. My Mother was Isabell Carrick Nielson daughter her name was Laverne Nielson Peterson.
This story was donated by Kip Peterson if you are interested in more information about this family please contact him.