Saturday, May 12, 2012

"We Packed Our Trunks and Journeyed To Zion"

A 'trunk' filled with artifacts were the centerpieces for
eleven tables.  Each one decorated, delightfully, different.

     Last Saturday, 5 May 2012 the Daughters of Utah Pioneers had their annual convention to the theme of "We Packed Our Trunks and Journeyed To Zion."  An event myself and six other members of the Benton Company Board have been planning for since the first of the year. 
      Let me explain what DUP is about. 
This is a society for decedents of Utah Pioneers that; came to, died en-route to, or was born in the Utah Territory/State of Deseret before 10 May 1869, the date of completion of the Railroad.    Pioneers include members of the LDS faith seeking religious freedom, and NON members of the LDS faith; members of the Mormon Battalion, Johnston's Army, workers on the railroad and trappers and hunters, anyone, with no regard of creed or ethnic background.    If a woman does not have 'Utah Pioneer Heritage' she may join as an associate member but, cannot hold an elective position.    (Big Woop)
     A DUP Company is comprised of DUP Camps.  In our Benton County Company we have seven camps a total of one hundred twenty three active members.  I have the privilege of being the Company President and have six very talented and supporting 'daughters' on my board for a two year term.  
    Our camps meets once a month from September through May.  Without going into every detail of our meetings;  we have historical lessons, ancestor histories, pioneer music, and patriotic themes.  It is nonsectarian and nonpolitical.    I joined DUP ten years ago.  It is my way of honoring my Pioneer Heritage.  To always remember the sacrifices they made. I feel they are a special kind of people who had a lot of faith, a lot of courage and fortitude to achieve impossible tasks.  I have learned so much about myself in my 'study' of each ancestor.  
To learn more about DUP here is the web site. International Daughter of Utah Pioneers

"Mary was given this beautiful dress at the dock in Wales by her Sister-in-Law, Sophia Davis."  
 On with the whole purpose of this post!  Above you see a beautiful green taffeta dress that belonged to Mary Rees born in 1840 at Argoed, Bedwelty, Monmouthshire, Wales.   One month after her marriage to Henry Hugh Harries on 15 March 1859 at age nineteen, Mary and Henry migrated to Zion, sailing on the ship William Topscott then crossing the plains with the Robert F. Nelson Company arriving in the Salt Lake Territory on 15 Sep 1859.  Mary brought this dress and many other dresses as well as material across the plains.  It is one hundred and fifty three years old and is still in wonderful shape.  Handmade, it is exquisite.  Today it is entrusted by Mary's decedent Ellen who lives in the Seattle area.  Ellen is a dear friend of our Vice President Trudy who did all of the arranging (many hours)  in bringing the dress to our convention to put on display.    Needless to say all enjoyed the annual convention.   
     Now to tie this to my own Utah Pioneer.   My third great-grandfather Charles Kidgell Sr. and his daughter and husband second great-aunt and uncle Caroline Kidgell and John Higson came on the same ship and crossed in the same company as Henry and Mary.     
I can assume they were very well acquainted with one another so long ago.
Wedding dress, early 1900's.

One more picture of another beautiful dress on display at our convention.      

     This is a beautiful wedding dress of a second great-grandmother of Charlene a member of our DUP Meadow Springs Camp.  It's over one hundred years old and again, in wonderful shape. 
     My Thanks to everyone in putting on this successful convention!

     Now that our home has been refurbished, a trip to Utah for a grand-daughter and grand-son-in-law college graduation and traveling to Idaho,then the DUP convention I hope to get back to a normal schedule which involves posting on a regular basis.   
  Thanks for stopping by.