Saturday, October 30, 2010


The city of Nauvoo really knows how to celebrate Halloween. They start with decorations long before the evening. They have everyone involved in this marvelous process. The streets are roped off so no one can park on the street from 5 PM on. The businesses open their doors to pass out treats. The people dress in costumes and line the streets to look at the all beautiful pumpkins. Schools bring their students to carve pumpkins. There are bands and parades and booths all along the street. Even the most ardent Halloween Hater would love BOOTIFUL NAUVOO! The advertisement for this wonderful evening of fun for families--for young and old alike is on all the billboards that advertise Nauvoo. This is the one on HWY 96 on the way into town.
This is Durrell Nelson-- a transplant from Hooper, Utah to Nauvoo, Illinois. He is in charge of the beautiful plants and trees of the city. He is also the founder of the fudge factory and the instigator of BOOTIFUL NAUVOO. He has served as the Stake President here and is a marvelous man. His family spent three full days from 6 AM to 10 PM drawing, carving and preparing for this event!!!

Although it's a community effort, the carving takes place in the NRI warehouse. Each missionary is asked to donate one hour of time to carve pumpkins. One of the requirements of "getting" to carve is gutting the pumpkin. I thought of my great sixth grade sentence, "Guts were splattered everywhere!" I also thought, "Great Pumpkin is a comin' to town!"

The missionaries paid for and made popcorn and put together bags of candy with about 10 pieces each. We passed out 1000 bags of candy and about 2000 bags of popcorn. People from all around the area come to participate in BOOTIFUL NAUVOO.

THe Great Pumpkin Band of Nauvoo--otherwise known as the Nauvoo Missionaries. I'm not on the wagon because I was taking a picture of the wagon.

On the twelfth day of Halloween my true my love gave me...12 bats a flying, 11 masks a leering, 10 ghouls a groaning, 9 ghosts a booing, 8 monsters shrieking, 7 pumpkins glowing, 6 goblins gobbling, 5 scary spooks, 4 skeletons, 3 black cats, 2 trick or treaters and an owl in an old dead tree. This was my contribution to Halloween in Nauvoo. There weren't very many people around for the program until I started the 12 days of Halloween from Peanuts Pumpkin Carols. So I got it going and it was a great success, even if I do say so myself. About 100 people gathered around when we started that song. It was fun!!!

The man at the keyboard behind the sax is Elder Lamar Taylor. He is a very good friend of my brother, Thom. For an old man he's actually looking pretty good.

Three little pumpkins sitting on a fence, a witch came riding by, HAHAHA I'll take you all and make a pumpkin pie HAHA!

Boo! Boo! Boo! I'm a ghost to scare you--from Halloween town we come this night, dressed from tip to toe in white!

Ghosts and goblins all around--this is Halloween!

This is just one row of pumpkins. There were hundreds of rows just like this, and no, I'm not exaggerating!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Christmas Store

In Carthage, there is a store that is open only three months out of the year--The Christmas Store. The owner is a retired school teacher and he and his wife travel all over collecting ornaments for the 70+ trees they decorated in their store. But you don't buy the whole tree, you pluck the ornaments you desire off the tree and those are the ones you purchase. I have to admit, I was on sensory overload. When I got done, I couldn't believe I had only shot three pictures. I guess the rest were just implanted in my brain. Something I've always wanted to do--have a Snoopy Christmas Tree.
An Irish Santa complete with his Irish Whiskey

In honor of Elder and Sister Geilmann, serving in Ireland, an Irish ornament depicting the nativity.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Warsaw Signal

This is the building of the Warsaw Signal, owned by Thomas Sharp, who really hated the Mormons. He wrote many articles calling for "war" and for the renouncing of Joseph Smith as the leader. He even went so far as to call for the death of the prophet. He was one of the six who were put on trial for the martyrdom, but was acquitted by the jury as they felt it was unfair just to accuse those six when there were about 200 involved.
This is a typewriter found in the front window of the Warsaw Signal. Obviously it was not from the time of the Saints, but it is a very old typewriter that has probably been there for a very long time. What I wish I could have shown was the printing press that had fallen through the floor, but it was through a glass and my camera kept trying to flash it.

If you look up through the top glass, you can see a glimmer of light coming through, that is the roof of the building. It was reroofed not too long ago, but it rotted and the floor fell through the building, so the second level is no longer accessible.

Just to show a contrast, the final editorial of the Nauvoo Neighbor, published October 29, 1845, was written by John Taylor. He wrote: "As we are makig all the preparation in our power to leave the United States next spring, we have thought it advisable to discontinue the Neighbor at this number. We will suffer wrong rather than do wrong. There is room enough upon the earth for many nations to live in peace...The power that made Nauvoo; that gathered thousands from various climes and kingdoms, that reared the Temple, and that whispers to us now, 'peace be still and see the salvation of God' can guide us to bring forth a better city." With that the Nauvoo newspapers closed their circulations and the Saints prepared to move to the place "that God for us prepared."

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Fall in Nauvoo

You've heard the song April in Paris? Well this is Autumn in Nauvoo. The leaves are very slow turning this year. In fact, when I got here last year, the trees were bare and I wondered if I had come to the right city,but then I saw the temple and I knew I was in the right city. This is taken at the end of the Relief Society garden. It's so shaded in there that you can't get a good picture without a flash, but my flash wouldn't work because I was shooting out into the sun.
This is the John Taylor home and print shop. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to capture the color as I saw it, again, it was the time of day, but you might at least capture the feeling.

Some of the trees have already lost their leaves that is because we had such a wet summer and such a dry fall, but look at how many different kinds of trees you see across the field looking toward the stake center from the front of the temple.

This is the Stake Center surrounded by the fall foilage.

Not one of the great Kodak moments, but you can see the different colors as the leaves turn.

This is right across the street from the temple to the North.

This wasn't the picture I thought it was, but I don't know how to erase one off of the blog once I have loaded it on. So it doesn't capture the fall feeling, but it's a pretty good shot of the temple.

This is taken from my garage. I still maintain that I have the best view in all of Nauvoo.

Right across the street from Land and Records is this marvelous tree. It will be interesting to see how many squirrels stop living there when all the leaves fall off.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Sarah Granger Kimball

Sarah Granger Kimball about the time she married Hiram Kimball--isn't she beautiful?
Their home has the second most magnificent view of the temple only to be exceeded by mine. Every day she could look out her window and see the progress on that magnificent structure. She also saw the temple burning in 1848, and watched the tornado of 1850 knock it down. She had vision and spunk. In addition to all of the things she did for the Relief Society, she served on the committee for Women's Sufferage (Votes for Women--step in time!), and attended as a delegate the Constitutional Convention of the State of Utah. Her 75th Birthday was spent throwing a party for the widows and poor of her ward, and she paid for their transportation to her home. When the home was restored and dedicated in 1982, Barbara B. Smith, who recently passed away, and who was at the time serving as the General Relief Society President of the Church declared, "WE WANT THE WORLD TO KNOW THAT SOMETHING BIG CAN COME OF SOMETHING SMALL. WE HOPE THAT WOMEN WILL UNDERSTAND THAT WITHIN THEIR OWN HOMES, THINGS CAN HAPPEN THAT WILL HAVE GREAT SIGNIFICANCE IN THE CHURCH AND IN THE WORLD." Sarah understood that and showed all her life.
This is the Kimball family Bible--a gift from Hiram to Sarah. In it is recorded their family history up through the birth of their first grandchild in Sarah's own handwriting. Now this is another one of those miss the forest for the trees pictures, because I did not take a picture of the room in which the sisters of Nauvoo first met to determine a women's organization needed to be established. Margaret Cook, Sarah's seamstress, wanted to do something to help the work of the temple. She could sew but had no means to purchase material. Sarah had means to buy the material, but couldn't sew (maybe that's why I like her so much), so they determined that their efforts together could make a difference. They wanted to share that with others and invited them to this very living room. It was determined a consititution should be drafted by Zion's Poetess, Eliza R. Snow. When it was shown to the prophet, Joseph Smith, he responded, "Tell the sisters their offering is accepted of the Lord, be has something better in mind for the women." Later he said of the Relief Society, "The church was never fully organized until the women were thus organized."

Hiram Kimball was a very succcessful merchant of Commerce when the Granger family moved here. He was well respected and well-to-do. He had a frame home that was so well built that it still stands today. The foundation of her store is out in the cow pasture behind the home. I've got to meet the farmer that rents it and see if I can walk out there to see it. He was 14 years Sarah's senior, and not a member of our faith, but when he followed the family back to Kirtland (sent there at the request of Joseph Smith to take care of the financial mess and dispose of properties) to ask for her hand in marriage, they readily agreed. He married Sarah, and then in 1843 joined the Church. His business kept them from going west in 1846, but in 1851, Sarah had enough and packed up their two boys (the third son to be born while in Salt Lake) and moved west. He joined her a year later. He was called on a mission to the Sandwich Islands (Hawaii) and enroute, the boiler of the ship blew up and he was killed. Sarah was a widow for about thirty years.

The silver cup in the upper right hand corner of the china closet was given to Sarah in token of appreciation of her many years of service in 1880. She served as third counselor to Eliza R. Snow in the General Relief Society Presidency and was secretary to the General Board for many years. Eliza asked Sarah for an outline of the board that she established to run her ward. It was from that outline that guidelines for ward Relief Society Boards were established. Although she was not "honored" by what she did to begin Relief Society, she was thought of with great esteem by Eliza R. Snow, and that would be one of the greatest things that I could think of as a word of praise.

This is somewhat ironic. The rocking chair with the paper sitting on was made by Brigham Young. The Brigham Young house has a chair made by his brother, Phineas. You just never know where things are going to pop up in Nauvoo. Sarah served as Relief Society President of the Salt Lake Fifteenth Ward for 41 years (just shoot me now, as Doug Myler can tell you I was begging at the end of two for release). I guess she deserves to have a chair of Brigham's in her home, and probably a lot more--several crowns of glory.

Sarah and Hiram's bedroom. This is located on the second floor on the south wall, so it would have been a very warm room. Although the shaving stand did not belong to Hiram, men of affluence were able to have them,and he was a man of affluence. You notice the baby cradle. When their son, Oliver, was born, Sarah went to Hiram and asked how much he was worth to him. Hiram told her a lot. She asked, "A thousand dollars?" Hiram agreed at least that. She asked if he was half hers. He, of course, responded in the affirmative. Then she said, "I'd like my half of that money donated to the building of the temple." As Hiram gave $500 to Joseph Smith, he related why that money was being given.