Friday, May 9, 2014
Autobiography of Ellen (Ferris) Hixson
I was born on November 22, 1913, in a house where the Irvine Jr. High School now stands in Sugarhouse, a suburb of Salt Lake City. When I was 9 months old, my parents moved to Blackfoot, Idaho and we lived there for 3 years. Dad worked on a farm with mother’s brother, Earnest Scott. Dad later took a job in a sugar factory close by. There were lots of Indians in and around Blackfoot, as the name of the community was taken from the tribe of Indians by that same name. Mother said that we had just moved into our house and we had a roll of linoleum standing by the door. One day an Indian squaw came to the door and wanted the linoleum. Mother wouldn’t let her have it. Mother didn’t feel well at the time and the squaw could see her condition. She wanted to help her out so she offered to take the little white “papoose” (I was the papoose) so that the white squaw would get better faster. Mother said that I ran and hid in the vegetable garden. To get rid of the Indian, mother gave her some sugar and butter. We left Blackfoot in 1916 and moved to Montpelier, Idaho. Dad got a job on the railroad. We lived in a small house. The only place for my bed was over the bathtub. Mother put a board on the tub that would cover it and then would make my bed on top of it. The railroad employees went on strike at time, and during these periods, it was very hard on us. We knew what being poor was. My health as a child was generally good. The only diseases I had were measles and mumps. I was a baby when I had the measles. Mother says I had to be carried around on a pillow because I was so sick. I had measles in my eyes and ears. In fact there wasn’t a spot on me that wasn’t covered. The dresses I wore when I was in grade school were the very same as the present style in 1959 and 1960. My little girl, Joan, who is now about 10 years of age, is wearing the same type of black stockings as I wore when I was that age. I don’t let Joan wear the sack dresses because I just don’t like them. The stockings Joan wears are called Suzy long legs. The ones I wore were just long black stockings and I had to wear what we called pantywaists. It was a harness type affair with garters on to keep the stockings up. I don’t remember many of my playmates. I can remember when we lived in Montpelier of the severe winters we had. The snow was so deep it would come up past my waist and by the time I would get to school I would be wet. The snow was so deep that we could tunnel all over our back yard. While we lived in Montpelier, the Armaystice was signed, bringing to close World War One (November 11, 1918). I can remember the big celebration. The railroad shop whistle blew and it seemed like it would never stop. I also remember when the railroad depot burned down. To me it seemed like the world was on fire. I started school in Montpelier. The first play that I was in was about the Four and Twenty Blackbirds Baked in a Pie. Mother and Dad raised canaries. We had a large cage and had lots of little birds. One day we went away and one of the windows was left open just a little so that a cat got in and some how got at the birds. That ended the bird raising business. During the year 1919 the whole country experienced a very bad influenza epidemic. Thousands of people died. Our family had it while Dad was away. When he got home the doctor wouldn’t let him in the house as long as some of us were sick. He had to stay at the railroad shops. My brother Sherman and I were not too sick and we had to take care of the house and the rest of them. There were so many sick in the town that no one could get any help. We all had to get along the best way we could. At this point in my story, I will briefly mention something about my two brothers and three sisters. Sherman is the oldest of the boys. He gave my parents a rough time because he used to run away. Mother and Dad even called in the police to find him. He liked to be in plays in church and school. His favorite roll was Charley Chaplin. Sherman is a jack-of-all-trades. He would try anything that came along. He shined shoes, pushed ice cream carts around, and worked on farms and at the railroad and many other things that I can’t remember. While living in Montpelier, he was cut badly on the forehead. A group of boys were playing with some explosives. They would put some powder in a can and let it blow the can up in the air. This time the explosion took place too soon and the can hit his forehead. At the present time he lives in Medford, Oregon. He is successful in the undertaking business, being in partnership with the stake president there. They also have a cemetery. He is a member of the stake high council in our church and has raised a nice family. His wife, Pearl, is very active in the church also. George is my other brother. He is just 18 months older than I. He was born on April 1st, so is an April fool baby. My mother’s sister had a baby just a few weeks before George was born. She named her baby Paul. Mother had chosen that name too. Her sister’s baby died, so when George came along, mother changed her plans and called her baby George. Once in awhile his birthday came on Easter and I would color empty eggshells and give them to him for an April fools joke. While in Montpelier, we lived next to a café. There were two cooks working there. One was very thin and the other was very fat. When we saw them outside we would call as a joke, fatty, fatty, run for your life; here comes skinny with the butcher knife. George was one year ahead of me in school until he became disinterested and was put back a grade so that we spent the rest of our school days in the same grade. He was very particular about the boys I went with when we were in high school. If he didn’t like a certain boy, he told dad and that would prevent me from going with him. It used to make me mad, but now I know it kept me out of a lot of trouble. We graduated in 1931, which was in the middle of a bad depression. There wasn’t any work for graduates. George got discouraged and joined the army at Fort Douglas in Salt Lake. He stayed in the army and retired at the age of 44. After that he got into civil service and at the present is just outside of Sacramento, California. He married a girl from Medford, Oregon. George is not active in the Church. His wife Jean is a Catholic and she has raised their children in that faith. Josephine is the oldest child in our family. The fact that she is the oldest is why I don’t know too much about her while she was young. When she was in her teens she had the flu very bad. She lost much of her hair and had to wear something on her head until it came back in. It came back very curly and it was very beautiful. In her senior year of school, her picture was in the yearbook and under her picture was this title, “Your hair is your fortune.” Most of her early life was spent in Montpelier, Idaho, and then later up in Nampa, Idaho. She met her husband after we moved to Salt Lake. He was from Nampa. His name was Richard Welcome Kirkham. He was about the first fellow Josephine went with and he was very good looking. He swept her off her feet and they were married. This marriage proved to be a most unhappy one. They had two children and then she divorced him. He was an immoral man. Josephine raised her two children the best way she could. She also educated herself and graduated from college as a nurse. She has spent some time in New York City at a large hospital there and at the present is at the St. Marks Hospital in Salt Lake City. Grace is the second oldest sister. When she was very little, she also used to run away. Mother had to tie her up with a rope in the yard. She was a tomboy type. When we were living out on Highland Drive in Salt Lake City, she went to school with a boy that she fell in love with. He became very ill and died. She wanted to marry him at one time very badly, but mother and dad were against it. She became discontented and went to California to get a job. While there, she met Joe Costa whom she eventually married. Joe was from Portugal. They had two boys. Joe and Grace live at Redondo Beach in California. Grace doesn’t do anything in the church and Joe is a Catholic. Her children were baptized in our church but as they grew up, they leaned toward the Catholics. Jessie was my third sister, she being the youngest in the family. I was three years older than she. She had a short and a sad life. When she was about 5 years old, she fell when a swing broke and lit on her spine. She must have been hurt badly, because she wouldn’t sit down for several weeks. Not too long after, she became ill and had convulsions. She started school but didn’t go very long because the convulsions came more often. We took her to the Tabernacle to be baptized and shortly after she got worse. She lost her eyesight and after taking her to the Mayo Brothers, we were advised to put her in a hospital because it was so hard on Mother. She was there for several years and died when she was 16 years old. It is our opinion that she had a tumor on the brain. With present medical methods, we feel she could have been cured. We moved from Montpelier in the year 1922 and went to Nampa, Idaho. After living in Nampa about a year, we then moved to Salt Lake City. At first we lived with my grandmother Scott at about 4700 South Highland Drive, close by Holladay. I attended the Old North School that was on the North West of 39th South and Highland Drive. That is where my father and mother went when they were little. My grandmother was a widow and did odd jobs to earn a living. She would card wool and at times I could help her. Grandmother assembled radio headphone sets for the Baldwin Radio Works, a factory close by. She would pick up the parts at the factory and then assemble them and return them ready for use. I helped her do that many times also. We didn’t have electricity in the house at that time. It was available in the area, but we couldn’t afford it. Her house was not modern. There wasn’t any running water in the house and we had no inside bathroom. Because of the lack of water, we didn’t have a lawn around he house. The whole front yard was planted in poppies. They grew with very little moisture and I thought her yard was so pretty. When we moved, it was to a two-story house at 1376 South 3rd East in Salt Lake. I went to the Whittier School through the 5th, 6th, and 7th grades. It was while we lived in this house that we got our first radio. That was a big event in our lives. We had a well in our yard so we built a pond and each year we would get some baby ducks at Easter time to put in the pond. Later in the year, we would have roast duck. We had a large apple tree in the yard and I liked to climb trees. I think I was the best tree climber in the neighborhood. I have lots of fond memories of my childhood while living in this house. I went to Sunday school, primary and religion class. When I was older I went to mutual. I was in lots of plays and because I had such long hair, I always got the parts such as Mary, the mother of Jesus, etc. I took piano lessons for one year but like most kids, I wouldn’t practice, so mother wouldn’t let me take them any longer. Now I would give anything if I could play the piano. I love music and can sing just beautifully in my mind, but when I open my mouth, the music seems to come out flat. I’m sure if I had learned to play the piano, I could at least have been able to stay on key while singing. Even my husband would have hesitated marrying me if he had known that I sang off key. I went to the South Jr. High School for the 8th and 9th grades. I liked gym class very much and earned all the awards possible in sports while at Junior and Senior High Schools. I sprained my ankle jumping over the hurdles and was on crutches for a long while once. I attended the West High School in Salt Lake City for one year during 1928-29, then the family moved back to Nampa, Idaho. The summer before my senior year I had to have my appendix removed and a tumor taken off my wrist. I was at the LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City. I graduated from the Nampa High School in the year of 1931. During this year, mother was the stake primary president (Boise Stake). I was the stake play director. We lived in the Nampa 1st ward. I was secretary of the Sunday school and was active in the MIA. My father was a member of the Masonic Lodge in Nampa and wanted me to join the organization for the youth, but I couldn’t do that because my church gave me the things I wanted most. Dad was active in the lodge for some time then gave up his membership. In 1932 we moved back to Salt Lake. A national depression was on and jobs were very hard to get. I did house work, tended children (25 cent an evening) and many other things. Eventually I got a job at the ZCMI factory where they made clothing. I learned to operate the large power machines that made overalls, Levis and house dresses. I worked there for about 4 years then in 1936 I left Salt Lake and went to Los Angeles, California to work in a clothing factory there. After 9 months, I returned to Salt Lake and enrolled in the Quish School of Beauty. I was very active in the MIA organization. Each year the gleaner girls of the MIA held a formal dinner dance at the Hotel Utah in Salt Lake. It was at one of these affairs that I met my future husband, Sterling Hixson. A very close girl friend, Helen Hunter, was the president of the young ladies MIA in her stake and had charge of the dance. She had to attend the dinner dance and since her husband was on a mission, she asked her brother to escort her to the affair. Helen asked me to go and said that she had a “blind date” for me with a returned missionary from Holland. She made it sound so exciting that I agreed to go. On the way home from work the day of the dance, she said she thought she had better tell me that the “date” she had arranged for me wasn’t as good looking and wonderful as she had led me to believe. She said he was shorter than I was and wasn’t very good looking and his teeth were bad. Well, when she was through, I didn’t want to go, but it was too late to back out. I told her that when we met the fellows in the lobby of the Hotel Utah, if I didn’t like the looks of the fellow who would be with her brother, I was going to leave before he saw me. We watched the entrance from the balcony, and when I saw the fellow that was with her brother, I decided to stay and go through with the date, because he was the best looking fellow I had ever seen. He was taller than I, had beautiful black curly hair, nice teeth, pretty eyes, and nice personality and proved to be very interesting. I thought he was perfect and I guess I knew from the start that I would marry him. The first few weeks of our friendship were all mixed up because Sterling told me he loved me and wanted to plan on marriage. That made it so that I had to make a choice between Sterling and a fellow that was on a mission in Germany at the time. I liked Sterling so very much but at the same time I felt an obligation to the one on a mission. Sterling had to leave town for a two-week business trip and said that if I would give him some assurance that I would say, “yes”, that he would come back, otherwise he would not. I asked him to give me those two weeks and I would give him an answer. I did a lot of thinking and praying during that time. The day he came back, he called me at the beauty school and said he would meet me after school in the lobby of the Tribune building. When I came down on the elevator, I saw him first, and it was then that I knew for sure that I wanted him more than I had wanted anything else in my life. While we were riding home, I told him I loved him and how much I wanted him. We were married on September 21, 1937, in the Salt Lake temple, just six months after we met. Our courtship was short but very wonderful. The night Sterling gave me my ring we went dancing at a lodge up Emigration canyon. Between dances we went out on the veranda and he slipped the ring on my finger. He was so nervous that he just about dropped it. If he had, it would have probably been lost, as it would have gone down between some flooring into some brush. That happened on June the 4th, 1937. Our honeymoon was very nice. We went to California on the train. Money was hard to get at the time, so Sterling sold the car he had and with what we both had, we had a very nice trip. When we came home, we rented a cabin at the Utah Motor Park at about 10th South and State Street. I was still going to beauty school and working part time at the ZCMI beauty salon. Sterling worked at the Ute Hamburger, a lunch stand at the University of Utah. He earned $52.00 a month and I received about $55.00 a month. With the salaries combined, we managed very nicely. After about four months, we obtained an apartment in the Los Gables Apartments on 3rd East between 1st and 2nd South. We paid $35.00 a month for a very nice apartment and I understand that the same apartments now rent for over $100.00 a month. We were very happy and enjoyed each other’s company very much. We walked to town in the evenings and window shopped, and would drop in some place for a sandwich. On Sundays, when he would open up the lunch stand, I would go along with him for breakfast. Sterling was always so kind and thoughtful, always remembering to do the nice little things. I remember when we knew we were going to have our first baby; he sent me a beautiful basket of flowers and a card that read, “To my mother to be”. He was always doing nice little things for me and I have loved him more deeply because of his thoughtfulness. After working at the lunch stand for two and a half years, Sterling wanted to better him self, so just one month before Richard was born, he quit his job. After some time and a struggle, he obtained a job with the Utah Power and Light Co. Our first assignment was at the power plant at the mouth of Ogden canyon, so we moved to Ogden on April 17th, 1939. Richard was born on May the 16th at the LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City. I was in the hospital for 10 days compared to the present 4 days for maternity cases. That was the custom in those days. At the time Richard was born, the fathers were kept out of the delivery room. Dr. Russell Wherritt believed that the father should be a part of the experience and so he invited Sterling to come in the delivery room with me. The first day home with my baby was a nerve-wracking experience. A friend, Nora Walton, came and bathed Richard the first day for me. All the time she was bathing him, he was crying like crazy. I sat watching her and was crying just about as hard as the baby. Now I can look back and laugh, but at the time, it wasn’t funny. We lived in Ogden for about 7 months and then moved to Salt Lake in November. Sterling worked in the power office that winter and we rented an apartment at 171 T Street. Richard spent his first Christmas there. We took lots of pictures of him and the tree. It was while we lived here that Richard fell off the couch and knocked his front teeth loose. In the Spring we moved to a small cabin on the edge of the reservoir in Big Cottonwood canyon, Southeast of Salt Lake. Sterling worked at the Millcreek and Cottonwood power plants. We sure enjoyed living in the canyon that summer. I fixed this cabin up so it was very comfortable. I made cupboards out of wooden orange crates and we used them for a washstand and place to put our toothbrushes etc. One day the radio was on and Richard was walking toward this cupboard. Just as he put his little hand out to take the toothbrush, the announcer on the radio said, “No, don’t’ touch that dial”. Richard dropped his hand and looked up at me as if it were I scolding him. The Government had some boys in a camp close by and they built a picnic ground just below our cabin, at Storm Mountain. During the Summer evenings we could hear the people laugh and sing and play music. We had to get all our water at the picnic ground and carry it back to the cabin. We took our baths in the washtub and I did the washing by hand in the same tub. The cabin was built about three feet from the edge of the reservoir, so I had to watch Richard very close. We didn’t have any refrigeration so we put our milk and butter in a 5-gallon milk can and lowered it by rope into the reservoir. The rope was tied to a board walkway leading out to a gauge in the water. One day we were all dressed up to go to Salt Lake and Sterling was all in white including shoes. He went to lower the can down in the water and slipped on some moss into the water. He went in up to his waist and would have gone all the way in but was holding onto the rope. It was a funny experience. One night at 11 PM, as Sterling was getting ready to go to work, someone knocked at the door. It was a man that was lost and he was very drunk. To make sure he wouldn’t be around while Sterling was at work, he helped him in the car and drove him to the mouth of the canyon and dumped him out. I locked the door and the windows good and tight that night. In September of that year (1940), we moved to Heber City, Utah. Sterling worked at the Murdock power plant. We liked living in Heber and made some wonderful friends. From Heber we moved to Grace, Idaho. This move somewhat depressed me because I was expecting my second baby and I was ill most of the time. The town was so small and so isolated that I worried about what kind of a doctor we would have. There was no need for worry because the doctor was one of the best. We were so far away from a hospital that our baby girl, Judith Ellen, was born at home on December 22, 1942. We lived in a beautiful house down on the banks of the Bear River below Grace, Idaho. World War 2 had started and all the power company property had to be under guard. The doctor had to identify himself to get through the gates to come down to the plant. During the two weeks after the baby was born, the doctor visited us every day. Doctor Kohler liked to go duck hunting. Our home was a few feet from a good hunting spot. He would come dressed for hunting and would leave his medical bag at our house then check the baby and myself when he would go home. The night Judith was born, the doctor saw a knife that Sterling had brought back from Europe. It struck his fancy so that he offered to deliver the baby for the knife. Sterling was tempted because we needed the money, but in the end he said no. Some time later, someone stole the knife and Sterling felt very bad about it. When the baby was a few days old we noticed she had something on her side. It turned out to be a blood tumor. When she was 9 months old the doctor advised us to have it removed. We had to take her to Salt Lake to a specialist. The war was on and gas was rationed, but we obtained sufficient for the trips while the tumor was removed by radium treatments. When Judy was one year old she was very ill. At first the doctor treated her for chicken pox but later thought it could be small pox. It turned out to be a strep throat and it was so severe that it got into her blood stream. She broke out all over her body with ugly sores. I held her day and night while she was ill. I feel that through answer to our prayers and those of the elders, along with a new drug out (Sulfa) her life was spared. We had her tonsils out when she was 18 months old. We lived at Grace for 3 and ½ years and then moved to the Oneida Plant about 20 miles down the river. It was 18 miles up from Preston, Idaho. That was a very beautiful place. Pine trees were all around and the houses were close to the bank of the river. It was at this site among others that Jim Bridger, the famous early day trapper camped on his first expedition out West. There were 12 families living at this camp. We had a one-room schoolhouse with 8 grades in the one room. Richard started his schooling there. We have lots of memories of Oneida. The swinging bridge, hikes up to the dam, fishing, getting our Christmas trees out of the hills and Judy falling in the river while gathering the first spring wild flowers. During the war years we went without many things. We repaired and painted old toys, trikes, sleds etc. that we gathered. Each family had a large vegetable garden and we raised all our potatoes, carrots, onions etc. for the winter. We were isolated during the winter at times. We created our own entertainment. We had group dinners, sleigh riding parties, etc. At Christmas time one family would start out singing Christmas carols at the first house then that family would join them and they would keep it up until all families were in the act. All families would treat each other. At times when the company officials would come to visit the plant, I was asked to cook their meals. On January 30th, 1947, Robert, our third child was born at the Preston hospital. Dr. O. Cutler was the physician, who later became a good friend of ours. When Robert was 7 months old we moved back to the Grace plant. Each move that we made was a promotion for Sterling. We lived at the Grace plant for the next 5 years and during this time we had many rewarding experiences. Some were sad too. The winter of 1948-49 was very bad. There was a record snowfall and lots of wind with it, which caused power lines to sag and in places they could nearly reach the lines with their arms. It was on March 9th of 1949 that we were able to leave our house for the first time over a long period, and then the road was just opened for one lane of travel. One could stand on top of the car and still couldn’t reach the top of the snowdrifts. The temperature dropped as low as 27 degrees below zero. Several deaths occurred during this time in the area and the people couldn’t be buried. They were left in garages up in the town. That same winter, our church house burned to the ground. It was an old building constructed by the early settlers after the design of the Kirtland Temple. It caused a great deal of sadness. While we were building the new one, we met in the schoolhouse. During these years there were some bad accidents at the plant. One took the life of a neighbor, Keith Roper. A valve broke in the plant under heavy pressure and it blew into his body cutting one of his legs off and disemboweled him. Richard had a frightening experience while we lived at the Cove plant, two miles down the river from the Grace plant. We used electric heaters to heat the house. One heater had a short in it that we didn’t know about. When Richard touched it in the bathroom with his bare foot while his hand was on the plumbing, he got a 220-volt shock through his body. He lost consciousness for a minute but came out of it all right. He was left with a burn on his foot. Another time Richard turned up missing and after looking for him for some time, I found him and the neighbor girl, Elisa Clark, sitting on the top of a wall where the water came roaring out of the power plant. I was terrified when I saw where they were. Somehow I kept myself calm until I got to them and helped them to safe ground and then they both got a spanking. Not all of the experiences at Grace were on the bad side. The most were very happy ones. One time with the help of the children, I built a tree house just back of our house. We had fun roaming through the junkyard where lots of material had been discarded and where the power company stored supplies and used materials. We made many trips to this junkyard and back to the tree house with a little wagon hauling the things needed to build the house. On one of the trips, Robert found a bottle of acid among the junk and got some of it on his hands and he was badly burned. We took him to the doctor for treatment. During the years at Grace, I did a lot of sewing and enjoyed cooking. I have about 40 blue ribbons that I won at both the Caribou County Fair and the Idaho State Fair. I won the ribbons for my sponge cake, white bread, handcrafts, and all types of clothing, including made over items. One item in handicraft is on my husband's desk. It is a lamp made from a piece of wood from the Hawaiian Islands and a piece of petrified rock from Wyoming. The shade is made from welding rod and wrapped with yarn. In fact, my husband thinks I am about the best all around wife in the world, so he has said. On occasions while working at the Cove plant 2 miles down the river from the Grace plant, Sterling would have to patrol the large flume that carried the water from Grace to Cove. It was two miles long. We would take the gun with us and shoot fish in the shallow streams and bring them home for supper. Water always leaked from the flume and for about 8 months of the year there was always ice under the flume where it had frozen. Part of the summer we would still be able to go up there and get ice to make our homemade ice cream with. That was always a treat. Whenever we were without electric power due to storms or during plant trouble, we would cook our dinners outside on the fireplace. During the war, in order to maintain conditions on the power system, we would have to shut our lights and heaters off over the morning and evening peaks. We would have to plan our meals accordingly. On September 9, 1950, we made a 45-mile drive to Preston where our fourth child, little Joan, was born. Sterling was with me again that time as with the other children. With Robert and Joan, he even gave the anesthetic as the hospital was understaffed. With Joan, the doctor hadn’t arrived and the nurse was down in the kitchen and Sterling delivered her. He has shared the pain and the joy that is part of bringing a child into the world. He was always very loving and sympathetic during those difficult months. I shall always be eternally grateful for his love and understanding, because it has made me love him more and made our marriage very wonderful. We enjoyed the new baby very much. Sterling’s family and many of his relatives always had three boys and the fourth child would be a girl. It has always been a happy thought with us knowing that we broke that spell by having a boy, a girl, and boy and a girl. Sterling was active in the Lions Club at Grace and at Preston. He advanced through all the offices until he became the president of the Grace club and eventually Deputy District Governor of Idaho. We went to the National Convention at Atlantic City. We left the children with Grandma Ferris in Salt Lake. We went to Denver, St. Louis, Washington D.C., New York City, Niagara Falls, Chicago and all the historical places from the Book of Mormon history. We were gone for a month. Again in 1953 we made a trip back to Michigan to get us a new Buick. I was very active in the Church while in Idaho. I was in the Stake MIA young women’s presidency, and with Sterling was Stake Era director. I also taught many classes in the ward. In December 1953 we moved to Salt Lake where Sterling was made assistant dispatcher for the company. It later developed until he made and met the requirements and was made a full dispatcher. We at first lived with mother and dad in North Salt Lake. They had a duplex. After a year and a half, we bought us our first home in Bountiful at 167 West 20th South. In order to help get us started with our home and to plan for Richard’s mission that we hoped was coming up, I decided to go to work at my old trade. I started with the Paris Department Store in the beauty salon. Mother took care of Joan at first. In 1953 Richard went to the Davis High School in Kaysville and then when the new Bountiful High School was finished, he went to it and graduated in 1957. Judy and Robert attended the Adelaide Elementary School and then when we bought our home, Robert went to the Bountiful Elementary School and Judy went to the junior high school at 4th North and Main Street. She is at present ready to start her senior year of school at the Bountiful High School. She had completed her three years of seminary and graduated in June. Those students that graduate are entitled to go on a trip through the Southern states to New York to see the pageant at Palmyra. Richard went when he graduated and now it is Judy’s turn. She will go in July. The trip costs about $140.00. Judy plays the piano very well having taken lessons for 7 years. She is a very quiet, reserved girl and has always been very active in church, as has Richard. She had been a great help to me by tending Joan and Robert when they needed it. Judy’s first job was a clerk in the bakery department at Albertsons store at 15th South and Main in Bountiful. She received 80 cents an hour. After three weeks she obtained a real nice job in the main offices of the Church on South Temple. She is working in the department that takes the census of the Church. Her salary is $1.00 and hour. Judy is a very sincere, sweet girl and has always shown respect to her parents. Richard being our first child had a few rough spots in his childhood while we were learning to be parents. We made many mistakes, but they didn’t cause any harm. Sterling and I both feel that keeping the children busy and using discipline along with love makes better adults. Richard’s first job was with Burnham’s Market in North Salt Lake. He was 15 years old and earned 75 cents an hour. He worked after schools and on Saturdays. He held this job for two years and then went to work at the St. Marks Hospital as an orderly. He liked the work very much and was there nearly two years. He applied for a position at the LDS Hospital in Salt Lake as a surgical technician and got it. He worked from 3 PM to 11 PM while going to school. He did this while going to his first two years at the University of Utah. He joined the Utah Nation Guard and was assigned to the Medical Corps, which tied in well with his employment. In May 1959 he received his call to go on a mission to the Netherlands, the same mission as his father was called to. He has always been interested in religion and was very active in the ward. Richard has a very friendly personality and gets along with everyone. Older people love him because he is always kind to them. He takes time to visit them and to make friends. He takes care of his money well and as with all the children, pays his tithing regularly. As of this writing, Richard has completed one year of his mission. At the present, Robert is 13 years old. He is in the first year of junior high school at the new South Davis Jr. High School on 65th South. He is very interested in sports of all kinds. He has been active in Jr. league baseball and is now playing in the Babe Ruth league. He is a stockholder in the Salt Lake Baseball team of the Pacific Coast League. Robert has taken piano lessons for 5 years and plays very well. He is now starting to take lessons on the trumpet. He is a star scout and is working toward his eagle badge. Robert is a very loveable boy and shows his affection very freely to us. He is dependable and cooperative. Joan is different from the other children in both build and personality. She is very independent and more temperamental. Joan is taking lessons on the piano. She is one in a class of her own in our family. She has a good singing voice. When she was three years old the doctor told us she had a minor heart condition that she would probably outgrow. At this time it appears that she is doing just that, as she is very healthy. She is in the 5th grade at the Bountiful Elementary School. As I bring this biography to a close, I will combine the future along with Sterling’s. We will bring it up to date each year together. It has been my desire to write these few words in order to complete our book of remembrance for our church and also to record a few things that may be interesting for our children and their posterity to read. (Compiled by “Ellen Ferris Hixson, July 1960. Typed by Sterling. Re-typed for digitizing by Richard S. Hixson, April 2006.) A Final Comment: Dad died on the 10th of September 1997, and Mom followed him on the 14th of October 2000. There were no entries made to the ‘events in his life’ after his 1995 entry on this page. Dad’s health worsened and he was unable to record the events of 1996-97. Mother mentioned to me it was her intention to continue the record but that did not happen. During the three years mother was alone, I stopped by her home each week on my way home from work at the Church Office Building and helped her with her book work – assisting her in paying her bills and ensuring her medical benefits were covering her doctor bills and prescriptions. We enjoyed good times and conversations together that were good for both of us. My journal contains details of both Mom and Dad and our experiences together. Richard S. Hixson, May 2006.