SOUTHERN UTAH ·FAMILY HISTORY AND GENEALOGY GROUP
Washington County PAF User Group
St. George East Stake Building
449 South 300 East, St. George, UT
Saturday, March 19, 2011
GREETERS: ..... Marilyn Rohrer, Wilma Staton and Sandra Bryantd
WELCOME: ..... Fran Lightner – 10:00 am
OPENING PRAYER: .....Helen Lenz
✱Welcome was extended to all members and visitors.
✱Fran Lightner the president explained to the group the concept of our September meeting. With their input and approval we will be doing a “St. George Live” Tour. The group will be paying for the cost of the tour for our members. A list has been circulated for all those interested to sign. Reservation are necessary for any attending the tour.
✱ Fran noted Don Snow’s classes being held at the Morningside Stake Center were going well and listed the last classes for this season. Those remaining are:
6 April 2011 – The Lay of the Land - Online Maps for Family History
20 April 2011 – A Case Study Using New Tools
TEACHING MOMENT: Family History Center Introductions
Helen Lenz, Vice-President, introduced the Directors of the Buena Vista FHC, Tom and Betty McKnight, told of their newly renovated center and the schedules.
They are open: Tuesday - 9am-5pm; Wednesday - 9am-9pm; Thursday - 1pm-9pm
PRESENTER, Jeanine Vanderbrugger, was Introduced by Fran Lightner
Jeanine Vanderbrugger is on the Board of Directors of the McQuarried Memorial Museum and the President of the Washington West Company of the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers (DUP). Jeanine spent 30 years in a working career with a large corporation in Los Angeles, and upon retirement, and upon obtaining her teaching credential, she began teaching elementary school.
Jeanine relocated to St. George from Southern California in 2005, and was immediately introduced to the DUP. This brought about the realization that all of her ancestors were among the original settlers of Southern Utah. She enjoys drawing upon these experiences to the history of our early pioneers with those old and new to this area, with visitors from around the world, or with school children.
PRESENTATION: Jeanine Vanderbrugger
Jeanine opened the presentation with the History of the settlement of St. George which was accompanied by a Power Point Presentation.
Charles L. Walker, among one of the first workers on the St. George Tabernacle, described the area.
“Saint George was dry and forbidding. When he arrived, Charley observed, "St. George is a barren looking place .... Very windy, dusty, blowing nearly all the time. The water is not good and far from being palatable. And this is the country we have to live in and make it blossom as the Rose. Well its all right; we shall know how to appreciate a good country when we get to it, when the Lord has prepared the way for his People to return and build up the waste places of Zion."
Brigham Young called several hundred Saints to southern Utah—Dixie—to raise the crop most in demand since the War Between the States began. In October 1861 - 300+ families were “called” to settle southern Utah. The main settlement was called St. George and another group was sent to Santa Clara (Swiss colony), most of these individuals in this group spoke little to no English. Those selected were people living in the Salt Lake Valley area who were from different parts of the US and Europe. It was noted that those who were selected had proven they would not give up. Many who came were traders, farmers, blacksmiths, potters, carpenters, musicians, merchants, etc.
Arrival began with the fist two families on November 25, 1861, the Robert Thompson and William Fawcett families. The majority of the “called” families began arriving on December 4, 1861. The first organization, Camp Council was set up on December 5, 1861. The first camp was in the area of the present day Dixie State College.
William Carter was the first to plowed a furrow in the rocking sandy ground.
Rocks were so abundant that the black volcanic rock was used for foundations and red sandstone for the walls. Good timber was found in surrounding mountains where saw mills were constructed. The first saw mill was in Pine Valley.
Money was almost unknown so many items were traded. To attend a social function, tickets were purchased with produce, molasses, squash etc., and performers were paid with the item brought.
St Georg Tabernacle cornerstone was laid June 1, 1863 and the building was dedicated December 28, 1872. Immediately thereafter the St. George Temple was begun - 1872 and completed in 1877.
Some of the first families to St. George were: Robert Gardner, George Woodward, Daniel D. McArthur, William Carter, Angus M. Cannon, James G. Bleak, Benjamin F. Pendelton, Ute Perkins, William Lang, William Fawcett, Israel Ivins, Lysander Dayton, Aston Kelsey, Jacob Gates, Walter E. Dodge, Orson Pratt, Jr., and many others.
Included in the Power Point presentation were pictures of many of the antique Items in the museum. The museum also includes Photos of early”“DIXIE pioneers; Histories of early pioneers; “Under Dixie SUN” history of southern Utah; Listings of markers and monuments of Washington County; Map of Early St. George.
Jeanine Vanderbrugger has created an Index for the "Under Dixie Sun" book. This is a great cross-reference for those looking for pioneer ancestors who are mentioned in the book. This book is a wonderful resource for learning the history of the early settlements and pioneers of Washington County, Utah and is available at the museum.
CLOSING PRAYER: Fran Lightner
RECORDING SECRETARY: June Morton
Members Attending: 27
TOTAL ATTENDANCE: 30
PRIZES: Dwight Seamons, Betty Versteeg, and Lena Jones