N.B. The following articles have been transcribed from the Taggart Family Newsletter.
His Beloved Wives
THE WOMEN IN THE LIFE OF
TAGGART FAMILY NEWSLETTER,
By Spencer L. Taggart
Relatively little is known in the Taggart Family about Grandmother Harriet Atkins Bruce. A principal reason was her death at an early age....one month before reaching twenty-four. We are indebted to Hazel M. Hilbig for copies of four family group sheets on Harriet's family. Two are attributed to Carol Ivins Collett; two are unattributed. We are also indebted to Lela G. Johnson for additional information. she has also shared here thoughts and ideas as well a shown us priceless mementos of her Great Grandmother Bruce.
In his History of Peterborough, New Hampshire (Richard R. Smith Publisher, Inc., Rindge, New Hampshire, 1954, Vol. I, p. 195), George Abbot Morison included "... George W. Taggart . . and wife Harriet Bruce . . . " among those citizens who were converted to Mormonism in Peterborough.
Harriet, a native of Peterborough, New Hampshire, was born March 20, 1821. She was the third child in a family of eleven...three girls, of whom she was the eldest, and eight boys. All but one of the eleven lived to maturity. It appears that Harriet was the only one in her family to join the Mormon Church, (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), being baptized in 1842 at age twenty-one. The exact date or by whom is not known. George, her future husband, was baptized the previous year in December.
The house in which Harriet was most likely living at that time has become known as the "Bruce House" and is listed among the old houses in Peterborough (Morison, op. cit, Vol. II, pp. 733-781). Built in 1801, it was purchased in 1834 by Harriet's father, Peter Bruce, when she was in her early teens. The Bruce house, when compared with other houses in Peterborough of the same period and earlier, suggests a family of comfortable middle-class means. This was probably the house that George came to when courting Harriet.
As was customary for girls or young women in those days, Harriet had made a "sampler", showing her ability at embroidering. Harriet's included the letters of the alphabet, the numbers 1 to 10, her name -- Harriet Bruce, and an abbreviation for Peterborough.
The introduction of Mormonism to the citizens of Peterborough was outlined briefly in the last issue of the Newsletter (Vol I. No. 2, p.9). Harriet was among those attracted to the new religion. Was it the meetings of those early Mormon missionaries that she first met George? Or had they met previously? Had they separately investigated the new religion? Or was their investigation made jointly? Had he influenced her decision to join? Or she his? Had this new religion brought them closer together? We wish we had answers to these and similar questions, but we do not.
Harriet and George were married May 7, 1843, in Peterborough. Was this, as it seems, a marriage of true romantic love and strong attraction for each other? This is suggested by their wedding portraits, which having survived one hundred forty years are in the possession of Lela G. Johnson. These beautiful portraits, done on porcelain and mounted in delicate glass-covered oval shaped metal frames, attest to the fact that Harriet and George were a handsome pair, and that they had deep sentimental feelings and cared about preserving the memory of what for them was a very special time.
We can only imagine the trauma Harriet and George must have experienced so soon after their marriage in moving from Peterborough to Nauvoo. Left behind were family and friends and the home they loved, with it's wooded mountains and hills and it's lush, lake-dotted country side. Nauvoo indubitably was beautifully situated in a large sweeping bend of the Mississippi, but it was on the frontier, overhung with hatred for the Mormons and with mob violence, persecution, and sometimes death. This was the Nauvoo that Harriet and George "gathered up" to in June 1843 in pursuit of their new faith. The Church meant a great deal to them and they were ready to make whatever sacrifice to help it grow and prosper.
Harriet's love for the scriptures was evidenced by the small leather-bound Bible she carried to Nauvoo. It carries her name - H. A. Bruce - inscribed in beautiful penmanship. Many of it's pages are water-marked, said to have come from a mishap while crossing the Mississippi. Harriet's Bible and "sampler" are also in the possession of Lela Johnson.
Under less than ideal circumstances, including lack of proper food, Harriet and George became the proud parents of a daughter. She was named Eliza Ann, apparently out of a desire to honor Harriet's mother, Eliza French.
Harriet's and George's life together in Nauvoo, unhappily, was to be short. Baby Eliza was only five months old when Joseph and Hyrum Smith were killed (June 27, 1844). Harriet, in apparent poor health, felt insecure and threatened. Harriet died on March 10, 1845 although the specific cause is not known. The conditions under which she had lived in Nauvoo had obviously taken their toll.
In a Patriarchal blessing, Harriet was promised a large family and posterity. Though Eliza Ann was her only child, her descendants number literally in the thousands.
Harriet's father, Peter Bruce, was the second child in a family of seven boys and one girl. Her mother, Eliza French, was an only child. According to Maude Taggart, a New Hampshire relative now deceased, Harriet's father was a soldier in the War of 1812. Her grandfather, Kendall Bruce, a native of Marlborough, Massachusetts, was a practicing physician as early as 1793. He later moved with his family to New Hampshire., thence to Canada, where he engaged in the lumbering business, and then to Vermont where he died. Harriet's widowed Grandmother Bruce died in Peterborough.
The Taggart Family is fortunate to have a short autobiography of Grandmother Fanny Parks. As provided by Walter and Hazel Hilbig at the Taggart Reunion in Salt Lake City (August 5, 1978), this is an inspiring account and a valuable part of Taggartiana.
She married George Washington Taggart July 12, 1845 at Nauvoo. She mothered George's little Eliza Ann During his absence of almost two years while he was helping to prepare for the trek of the Saints westward and serving in the Mormon Battalion. After his return she gave birth to their three children - Harriet Marie, George Henry and Charles Wallace. In 1852 she mothered their four small children in the company of her husband across the plains and mountains to the Salt Lake Valley.
But let us return to Nauvoo and pick up the account as she relates it: ". . .I was left in the care of John Mills with the understanding that he should take me to Council Bluffs with the avails of some property we hoped to sell, but there was no sale for anything, but Brother Mills was very kind to me. Then the call came for 500 men to go in the Battalion, my husband was one of them. I was still back there and it seemed awfully hard to me. I had no one to look to and not a penny of my own, but Brother Mills did all in his power to make me comfortable and said for me to stay with his family and if he went I should go, but he had neither team nor wagon and no one to help him as the children were small so it looked very discouraging."
". . . When I married Mr. Taggart he was a widdower with one little girl . . . Eliza Ann. Through all the hardships and trials to come I had her with me, but she was a great comfort to me. Consequently when I arrived at Winterquarters I was alone, but I was blessed with kind friends and never was without food and raiment nor shelter, although sometimes I had to live on hulled corn for several days together, for there was no mill nearer than Missouri and our cattle all poor and if one was killed to eat it was too poor to be good meat and in consequence of being without vegetables, many of the people had the land scurvy and many died. I had a touch of it but was not prostrated. When my husband left me in Nauvoo I was sick with the chills and fever, but as the weather got warmer I got better and my health was good the most of the time while he was gone which I considered a great blessing."
"Brother Mills took his family into Iowa opposite Nauvoo and went to work to get ready to go to the Bluffs as that was the stopping place for the time being, but he had no team and there seemed to be no way opened for him to get one and as he was a wagon maker he made himself a good wagon . . . that projected out wide enough to make beds in very comfortably, but I have said there was no sale for anything and the team was still lacking. One day Sister Mills and myself were talking on the subject and she mentioned that her father lived below there in Illinois and belonged to the church and that he had plenty of teams and maybe he would take a notion to come out and help them to a team also, and I felt as though that might be the way that might open for us to come, so accordingly we concluded to write to her father at once and it fell to my lot to do the writing for her and it seems as if I was inspired. I wrote quite a long letter telling him of our situation and asked him to come and go with us. He soon answered the letter saying he would come and bring teams for us all and thus the way was opened for us to come as far a Winter Quarters, for that is near the Bluffs. But the old gentleman never unpacked his things but turned around and went back to his old home, so he was moved upon to bring us out . . . in this I can see the hand of the Lord in bringing me thus far on my journey to the valleys of the mountains . . . When I arrived at Winter Quarters I was looking for the families of the Battalion to be assisted, but everyone had to do the best they could and as I had no relatives there I did not know how to act or what to do, so I went to President Brigham Young and asked him what I had better do and he told me to hunt up some acquaintances and get in with them until I could get myself a house. On my hearing this the tears came in my eyes and I felt like having a good cry, and to hide my tears I turned quickly away and said nothing. Well thought I, this will never do, I must do something, then wiping my eyes looked up and saw a tent and in the door stood one of the sisters. I went to her and inquired if she could tell me where Father Asa Davis lived. She showed me his house and I went there and was made welcome to such accommodations as they had. Their house was a small log one with no floor nor window, but a piece had been sawed out of one of the logs for the light to enter. When it was not too cold I slept in their wagon, then made my bed on their floor and in the day put it on another bed . . ."
"While living there one of the brethren living near by the name of Cook wished me to come and take care of his children as they had lost their mother and two of the children were sick. I went and did the best I could for them, the boy died and the girl got well. In the spring I had left there and went in with sister Amy Ann Babcock who had been laid up with the scurvy two months and her limbs were so drawn and the muscles and cords so contracted that she could not stand on her feet nor walk a step. I got some vinegar and pepper and rubbed on them, also some relaxing oil and a pair of crutches and she soon began to get around then. Her husband was also in the Battalion and she was on the hands of the Bishop, so he asked if I would go in with her and care for her and in that way my house and wood would cost me nothing, I accepted this offer and we each furnished our share of provisions which consisted mostly of corn boiled in weak lye water to take off the husks, then washed and boiled until tender. I can remember of thinking it quite a treat when a child, but come to live on it for months it was quite another thing."
"When spring opened sufficient for vegetation to show itself women and children and sometimes men were seen in all directions hunting wild potatoes, onion greens or anything bordering on vegetables for they were starving for vegetable food and a few had bread . . . My husband sent me some money through the winter and so I was able to get the necessary articles of clothing and such food as we could get, but we were living on Indian land and so far from our settlements and our cattle so poor that there were only a few who could travel to town for food and that was of the very plainest kind, no fruit, no meat or vegetables and as for butter, we seldom saw any. During the summer, the house we lived in was sold and we were obliged to leave it. I was wondering what I should do, but the way opened for us. Charles Lambert's family lived near and he was at work in Missouri and sent for his family and sister Lambert gave me the privilege of occupying her house. I accordingly accepted the offer and the sister that I had taken care of went with me and stayed until her husband came home late in the fall, then I was left alone, but in a few days and old acquaintance of my husband's called to see me and wished to stop with me awhile and I was glad to have her stay for company. Her name was Mary Moss."
"The little girl, Eliza, had forgotten her father though she was two years old. My husband got home on the 17th of December, 1847, while I was living in this house of Brother Lambert's. Early in the spring of 1848 the saints had to leave there and we crossed the river on the ice and went 30 miles above Kanesville to a place called Harris grove, Pottawattama Co., Iowa Territory, and my husband in the company of John Ney settled there. There my three children were born . . . Here we stayed until July 1852, then we started on our journey to the valley of the mountains, and arrived in Salt Lake City in the month of October 17th, 1852."
" . . . Most of the money that was sent to the wives of the soldiers was sent to Missouri and laid out for goods. I had the chance of trading some articles of store pay for wool and by getting it corded into rolls, I had the good fortune to pay for the warp and weaving and spinning and thus I made enough for my husband two pairs of pants and myself a linsy dress."
"My husband brought home a span of mules and a horse. These he traded for young stock, some cows and a yoke of oxen and immediately went to work on a farm preparing all the time to come to the valley just as soon as possible. In the fall of 1850 he went down to Missouri to work and earn means necessary to make the journey. Came home in the spring, planted his crops, made his own wagon, and we started for the valley. The journey was anything but pleasant. Some new roads, many mud holes, mountains to climb, bad water, and sometimes none at all. The cholera was in our midst and may died but as we came nearer to the mountains it left us and we enjoyed fairly good health. My own youngest child was now about four months old and when we walked, I had to carry him. At one time I walked five miles up a canyon and there we found snow that lay from one year to another. The fact seemed very strange to us. We traveled in companies of ten and assisted one another through the bad places and got along without any serious trouble, only occasionally the oxen would give out or a tire would come off. When the men would stop to repair the wagons the women would bake and wash but we did not iron because we were not prepared for this. But we were glad to get the chance to wash our clothes. In many places there was no fuel except buffalo chips and I baked many times with them and the men set tires with them. I used to make what the southerners called corn pone and baked beans."
"When we first landed in Salt Lake we camped for a few days in the first ward near the Brine Tannery. My husband went to President Brigham Young for council as to what he best do and he set him to work for him on a grist mill. He gave us a house to live in, in the 12th ward but we had no stove, bed, table, nor chairs, and the house leaked and with our beds and all on the floor it was very hard. Thus we lived for a year and they were very anxious to finish the mill for the convenience of the people. My husband improved all this time and finally got one bed stead made but we still had one on the floor. He finally made a table and in the fall of 1853, bought a stove from Heber C. Kimball. About this time he went to work for Brother Kimball and built him a grist mill and Brother Kimball sold him a lot on the hill a little below the Old Arsenell. Here he build a house and in the fall of 1865, then came to Richville, Morgan County, Utah."
With respect to the house in the 12th ward, Fanny's first child, Harriet Maria, recalled that they had a small garden: "I well remember having weeded onions one morning, we were in the house for dinner and a little rest, when a terrific storm suddenly arose, seemingly a cloud burst above the 20th ward. Water rushed down the street in torrents, taking our garden and cutting gulches on both sides of our house, which we could not cross until they were bridged. The water also ran through our house, it being of logs and we could keep dry only by getting up on the beds."
"Of course these conditions looked discouraging to father when he returned that night from work and we soon moved to a lot one block north of the Temple, which my father purchased from President Kimball. This entire lot he planted to peach trees." (Life Sketch of Harriet Maria Taggart, Wife of George Albert Goodrich. No date.)
Concluding with Fanny's own account " . . . I am still living in Richville April 11, 1877. April 25, 1877 I was chosen to act as President of the Relief Society, also to act as Treasurer for the same . . . March 15, 1884. Am still living in Richville, acting in my appointed place to the best of my ability . . . I held the position as Relief Society President of the Richville Ward until I was sixty-nine years old and as my health was failing I resigned my position after serving for thirteen years. I had been able to gather some of the names of my dead ancestors and in 1885 I went to the Logan Temple and labored a few days. The next year I went again and labored for more of my dead . . ."
In a patriarchal blessing given to Fanny by her father William Parks in 1843, while still living in Nauvoo, she was promised: "Thou shalt be numbered among the virtuous and thy mind stored with understanding, and in the due time of the Lord thou shalt have a companion. He shall be a mighty man of God and thou shalt raise up posterity endowed with the holy Priesthood that shall go forth to carry the gospel to nations yet unborn . . ."
Fanny's autobiography also contained a number of her own verses. This one written for C. W. Lindsay is an example:
Fanny ends her autobiography with an eye-witness testimony of the Prophet Joseph Smith: "I often think of the many happy hours I have spent listening to the words of life that flowed from the lips of the Prophet. No one could help but like him for he was kind and good. I have heard him reprove men for their wrong doings and talk pretty sharp but it was always in such a good spirit that it appeared to me that no one could be offended. I have heard him talk a great many times and can bear testimony that I always felt benefited and I know he was a prophet of God and that the Lord called him in his own due time to lay the foundations of his latter day work."
This account draws freely upon the following sources: Noah Rogers' Journal, copy obtained from Mary Lambert Taggart; Sketch of the Life of Noah Rogers and his wife, Eda Hollister, compiled by Julia Fellows Rogers (no date); Life sketch of Alice Janett Taggart and her husband John Wesley Bright, by Alice Janett Taggart Bright, 1958; Clarissa Marina Rogers Taggart, by Alice Taggart Bright (no date); A Tribute To My Husband's Mother (Clarissa M. R. Taggart), by Valeria Ann Laird Taggart (no date) - these latter two histories were assembled and made available July 1955 by Mary L. Taggart; The Early Life Of The Taggart Family In Morgan (taken from "Highlights In The Life Of Frederick Taggart"), compiled by Mary Lambert Taggart (no date); Life Sketch of Frederick Taggart and his wife Eulalie Ardella Leavitt, by Frederick Taggart, September 1954; Life's History of Bishop Henry Milton Taggart, dictated by Henry Milton Taggart to Sister Iva Brind, January-April 1932. Retyped from the original in September 1973.
The eighth child in a family of nine, Clarissa was seven years old when her father, Noah Rogers, was set apart by Brigham Young to be the presiding elder in establishing the Society Islands Mission (since 1907 known as the Tahitian Mission). After much hardship and loneliness, including burying one of his three companions at sea, and having met with only moderate success, Noah returned two-and-a-half years later. His mission, travelling without purse or scrip and requiring many long months on sailing ships between destinations, had taken him completely around the world, thus gaining him the distinction of being the first Mormon missionary to do so.
On his return to Nauvoo on December 29, 1845, he found his family, along with the body of Saints, out of the city and living on the outskirts. One can imagine his profound disappointment on finding his family as well as the Saints thus driven from Nauvoo, "the beautiful", of which he was one of it's founders. Noah and his wife, Eda Hollister, had joined the Church in 1837, at which time he had given up his practice as a physician, or country doctor, so he could devote all his time to furthering the gospel.
With the Rogers family again reunited, they moved on to Mount Pisgah (now Talmadge) Iowa, a gathering place of the Saints. Here Noah began making preparations for the trek westward, but he fell ill with pneumonia and died on May 31, 1846 - only five months after returning from his mission.
Eda held her family together and continued where her husband had left off. Her youngest child was now eight, and Clarissa ten. With the exception of her oldest son who was married, Eda's sons all remained at home. In the Spring of 1848, sons Theodore and Washington went ahead to the Salt Lake Valley to prepare a place for the rest of the family. Eda with her remaining six children followed in 1849.
Influenced by her restless, venturesome sons, Eda and her family remained only a brief period in the Salt Lake Valley. They moved first to Brigham City, then to Cache Valley where - in the vicinity of what became Logan - there were only a few people living in their wagons, then to Bloomington, Bear Lake County, Idaho. When her son, Elisha, married in 1871, Eda moved with him and his wife to Richmond, Utah. She died there six years later.
What happened meantime to Clarissa - the subject of our inquiry? We have little information, unfortunately, with which to fill in the blanks. So far as we have been able to determine within the Taggart and Rogers families, she left nothing whatever in the way of a written record. She did leave a record, however, as reflected in the lives and reminiscences of her children. For this we are most grateful as it will help us gain some insight into her life and character. In sum, hers was a life of meager means and hard work, coupled with much love for and devotion to her family, and steadfastness in her religious beliefs.
According to Alice, her daughter, Clarissa " . . . had no opportunity for schooling and education. Her mother was a widow with a large family, and the children had to earn their own way". Valeria Ann Laird, wife of son James, recalled hearing Clarissa bear her testimony to the Richville Sunday School that she remembered as a child ". . . the terrible gloom and sorrow that swept over . . . the Saints when the Prophet and his brother were killed . . . She remembered passing through the Prophet's mansion house and viewing their dead bodies . . . She went to the meeting afterwards and saw the mantle of the Prophet Joseph Smith fall upon Brigham Young as he was speaking".
Clarissa was thirteen when she first came to the Salt Lake Valley. Seven years later she married George Washington Taggart, becoming his second wife in a polygamous marriage. According to Alice, they had first met in Brigham City where Clarissa was living. He was twenty years older; her youth and beauty and firmness in the gospel must have been very appealing to him.
They began their married life in Salt Lake City, where George did carpentry work for Heber C. Kimball and President Brigham Young. Their first four children were born there. They had eight additional children after moving to Richville. Of their twelve children, nine lived to maturity and had large families of their own.
One of Fred's earliest recollections - their last child , born when his father was sixty - was seeing his father, with the help of Brother Morgan and Henry Hinman, shingle their log house. Prior to this, when it had a sod roof, son Henry recalled, "I shall never forget when it would rain, how my mother would get the pots and pans to catch the rain as it came thru the roof".
Fred described the house as having three rooms. In the living room there was a "very large fireplace made of sandstone" which his mother often used to smoke meat. The center room was a bedroom, while the south room combined to serve both as his father's carpenter shop and the boy's bedroom. The bed springs were made of one-fourth inch rope run lengthwise and crosswise, with sheepskins for a mattress and buffalo robes as covers. Later, when Fred was about twelve, he helped his brother, Mark, build a cellar with a concrete foundation to give their parents a better home.
The house was located in the mouth of a canyon that was called "Taggart Hollow". Close by, down the hill, was the Taggart grist mill. Also close by was the schoolhouse. School was held only three or four months of the year, the teacher often boarding at the Taggart's.
Henry recalled getting up early every morning to fetch water for house use during the day. Fred also recalled having this job. Sometimes a steer harnessed to the sleigh was used to haul the water in a forty-five gallon barrel. Their mother always insisted that water left over be poured out and fresh obtained each day. As the water was from a small stream, it had to be taken before the cattle fouled it up when turned out in the morning.
Despite their humble circumstances, the Taggarts had plenty to eat. They had cows and sheep which grazed on the hillsides, as did those of their neighbors. The small boys herded them to prevent damage to the crops.
A favorite pastime of the children was roaming the hills digging sego roots, gathering chokecherries, wild flowers, and pretty rocks. Henry remembered how they used bows and arrows to hunt birds, squirrels and chipmunks, which they cooked along with roasting potatoes. Fred related how he and his brother Mark would go fishing in Canyon Creek three or four times a week, usually returning with a large string of trout. In summer it was swimming in the streams and in winter sleigh riding down the hills.
Alice gives us this insight into how Grandmother Fanny Parks helped with this large family: "When I was small," Alice relates, "Aunt Fanny taught me to tell the time, to knit socks and stockings, and how to make a bed neatly; how to wash dishes and sweep the floor. She was very precise in all she did, and as child, I often went over to spend the night with her. It was such a pleasure to sleep with her in her lovely, soft feather bed, made up so smooth and straight. Each morning when she made her bed, everything had to come off and hang to air before it was made up again".
This picture of Clarissa attending to her family's need is poignant: "I can see her now", Alice related, "out by the little creek that ran past the house . . . bending over the wash tubs, washing wool from the little flock of sheep my father always kept. then she would make the wool into yarn, and weave it into cloth for our clothes. Father died in a suit made from cloth woven by Mother".
Alice further described her mother as willingly sharing her "last blanket" or "last morsel" of food. She was ". . . jovial and kind . . . noted for giving cheer and good advice to her many friends when they were in trouble or downcast in spirit".
A relaxed family atmosphere of congeniality and cohesiveness is suggested by Fred's account of sitting on his father's knee listening to Mormon Battalion stories. We can see Clarissa knitting stockings while gathered with her children in the warm embrace of the large fireplace as these stories were told. Fred remembered how the Battalion went without water until their tongues became swollen; how his father walked until his feet bled, meanwhile leading his mules to preserve them.
As a small boy, Fred would walk the three miles to Morgan to sell his mother's "Sunday eggs" for fifteen cents a dozen. This money was given to the Relief Society as a donation to the Salt Lake Temple.
Jim related how he would go looking for his mother, often finding her kneeling in her bedroom pouring out her soul to her Heavenly Father for guidance and protection for her children that they might grow up to be honorable men and women. Alice and Henry told of having similar experiences when looking for her.
Henry gave this account of how his mother encouraged and supported him on him on his first mission. He had met and fallen in love with Mary Laird and they had set their wedding date for November 1898. Meantime a letter for him from the Church headquarters - "Box B" - which had been sent to Star Valley (where Henry had been living) finally reached his brother, Jim, and his mother in Richville. Surmising it's importance, they lost little time in carrying it to Henry in Salt Lake City. As expected, it was a call from President Joseph F. Smith to go on a mission to the Southern States.
As none of the three had any money, Henry did not see how he could go at that particular time. Finally, they decided to discuss the matter with Miss Laird's parents who advised them to get married, but make plans for Henry to leave the following Spring. They offered Henry employment for the winter on their Mountain Dell Ranch in Parley's Canyon. This enabled Henry and his new bride to save $125 to start him on his mission. During this time she went home to her parents, and while there gave birth to her first son, who became affectionately known as "Milt".
Henry's mother and brother, Jim, were very desirous of having Henry go on this mission and promised to give him all possible assistance. His mother was receiving a pension of twelve dollars a month from the Government - presumable for her husband's service in the War with Mexico (Mormon Battalion). She shared this with Henry during his mission. When he went to bid his aging mother goodbye, she was staying with her daughter, Jane, in Morgan. With tears streaming down her cheeks as well as Henry's, she counseled: "Be a good boy and the Lord will help you and you will succeed". He returned upon completion of his mission the day after she was buried.
An account of Clarissa would be incomplete without some reference to the Taggart grist mill. After all, it must have been central to her family's life as their primary means of earning a living. Fred described his father as being "a first class mill and wheelwright".
His mill was "a stone burr" flour mill. Fred described it's large timbers, which were hewn with a broad ax, as being ten by ten inches. All of the mill's cogs were of oak; only a few nails were used in the mill's construction.
"I can remember . . . (watching) my brother George Henry, making flour" Fred reminisced. "At times there were so many grists to be made into flour that the sacks had to be stacked outside. People came from all the surrounding settlements, and even as far as Ogden, to get their flour milled there".
As a point of current interest, part of one burr, as well as one full size standing burr from the mill are memorialized on the tabernacle grounds in Morgan.
When Grandmother Fanny died (May 6, 1891), she and George had forty-six years (lacking two months) together. When George died two years later (June 3, 1893), he and Grandmother Clarissa had had over thirty-six years together. The high esteem in which these Grandparents were held, together with their children and their spouses, may be exemplified in the expression of love and friendship for them a the time of George's funeral. Fred, who was sixteen, remembered the funeral in Richville "with a very large congregation attending". "Eighty-four teams", Fred continued, "followed the hearse to the cemetery at South Morgan.
Clarissa lived almost another eight years. She spent her last few years with Alice and Fred and Jim in Lewiston, Utah, where she died on April 19, 1901. Her body was returned to Morgan and buried next to George and Fanny.
As an interesting bit of Taggartiana, we would like to share this information as provided by Louise Heiner Anderson. George and Clarissa were married in a civil ceremony May 9, 1893, at Richville, twenty-four days before his death. Why? We recall that the Church's Manifesto was issued in 1890 banning polygamy. Did George and Clarissa feel that it was now necessary to legitimatize their marriage in the eyes of civil authority? Was it that George realized he had only a short time to live and wanted to assure the transfer of his Government pension to his widow?
According to the marriage license, Sarah Jane Heiner and Jessie Taggart stood as witnesses. James B. Stewart was the Justice of the Peace who performed the ceremony. The signatures of the newlyweds were affixed as George W. Taggart and Clarissa Rogers. As a final note - this signature is the only example of Clarissa's handwriting we know of or have ever seen. Based on it, she had a good hand.
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