Friday, August 18, 2017

Harriet Theobald Bliss Lee
by Julie Ann Bliss Hammons
[with notes from Jesse Max Bliss]

Harriet Theobald was born the 30 of March, 1887, at Duncan's Retreat, Washington County, Utah. She was the seventh of twelve children born to George Theobald and Naomi Ruth Tanner. Only six of the twelve children lived to be adults, six children died before reaching the age of two years.. Harriet was the last of the children to be born in Duncan’s Retreat.
Duncan's Retreat was a little settlement on the Virgin River, where the settlers retreated to when they were flooded out by the unpredictable Virgin River. Harriet’s parents buried 4 children in Duncan’s Retreat. When a flood washed away the graves of her children, Naomi couldn’t bear it and they looked for another place to live.
The story as told by C. Leon Abbott is that George was sent on a scouting trip to find a place to settle. He traveled all the way to Canada and decided that Hinckley was the best place in the country. How true that is I don’t know, but Hinckley was good for a number of reasons. Located on the beds of the old Sevier Lake the topsoil stretches a mile into the earth. The Yuba Dam was being constructed and workers were given land and water rights in exchange for their labor. A number of families from the area moved to Millard County.
On June 6, 1895 she was baptized a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, in Hinckley where her mother served as Relief Society President for 17 years and her father was the first Mayor.
Harriet's father and mother moved to Hinckley, Utah in 1890. Hr father bought a farm about a mile North of Hinckley. Their home was the second one built in that town. As a young child she helped her father in the fields. He would cut the grain and the children would rake it, then they would bind it. Her mother in her later years was very ill and children had to do most all the house work.
Harriet went to work for Norman Ingles Bliss in 1907 to help care for his 5 young sons after the death of his first wife. They were married 1 April 1908 in the Salt Lake Temple. Norman Ingles was the son of Norman Ingles Bliss Sr. and Lydia Mariah Fisk Stout. Norman also came from the Toquerville area, near Duncan’s Retreat.
Harriet and Norman’s first child was born 31 January 1909 at Hinckley. They named him Norman Stanley Bliss.
In the year of 1910, Norman and Harriet moved to Abraham, a small settlement a few miles northwest of Hinckley. A Mr. Woodruff and Mr. Howard had purchased a half section of land and they had hired Norman to run it for them[1]. Three children were born to them while living in Abraham, Mary Zelma [Zel] 19 January 1911, Charles Howard 7 Sep 1912 and Theon Theobald [Bill] Bliss who was born 7 Jun 1914.
“Alfalfa seed was the main crop raised on the farm. One of the years while living in Abraham they had a bumper crop of seed. They threshed 1400 bags of seed. Norman told Harriet that she could gleen (sic) the fields and  could have all the money she could make.  Every morning, early she could been seen out in the fields gleening (sic) the ditch banks and other places where the mover could not get at. After the threshing was done and her seed sold she had a check in her hands of $125.00”.[2]
In the year 1915, the Bliss family moved back to Hinckley and purchased a farm that was previously owned by David Stout. This farm was located just across the road west of her father's farm. Their farm neighbored the farm of Apostle Hinckley.
Their last three children were born in Hinckley, they were Jesse Max born 24 March 1816, Ferron Lane born 5 January 1918, and George Ingles [Joe] who was born 14 July 1919. Harriet and Norman had to work hard to make a living, and were not able to give their children very many luxuries, but at Christmas time they went all out in seeing that their children had a good Christmas. Norman was a hard worker and the family had what they needed, plus plenty of opportunity for the boys to work
Norman purchased a hay-derrick and hired himself out to work hay for others in the community. In August he was pierced by a tine of the derrick fork and the wound became infected He was taken to Salt Lake City, Utah where he died 12 August 1919. This was a terrible shock for the family and especially Harriet who was left with the farm to run and a large family. Her youngest son was only a month old.
Harriet worked hard. She would arise early, harness the horses and hook the mower, rake or spring tooth and do what needed to be done. It was said that she could handle a team of horses as well as any man. The community would allow widows to glean the fields to help with their support and Harriet also did that. This meant that she could go into the fields, and by hand, reap any crops that were not harvested, or that were growing to close to the ditch banks for the harvesters to reach. All this work she did between her other jobs. Harriet would fix breakfast for her children, and get them off to school, then walk a mile and a half to the Woodbury Grocery Store where she worked. Mr. Woodbury was very good to Harriet and helped her out all that he could.
After getting home at night she could be found hoeing weeds or irrigating the currant patch or her garden. One yea in order to keep her garden alive she hauled water from a well. Generally watering was done by irrigation.
Harriet was very faithful to her church callings and she always tried to see that her children went to church.
At Christmas time Harriet would dress up as Santa Claus and go all over town visiting the families, and giving the children a sack of candy and nuts. Only a few of the residents of the town knew who Santa Claus was. This was also a way for her to bring in extra money to the family. The trials Harriet were going through were happening during the great depression. Harriet always saw that her boys, and one daughter, had a good Christmas. One year she bought baseball bats and balls and hid them away from the children, who of course found them. The story goes that the kids would come home from school and sneak out the baseball equipment, play a while and then hide it back before their Mom came home. When the gifts were opened on Christmas Morning, they showed signs of having been used.
On the 2 October 924 in the Salt Lake Temple, Harriet married John Raymond Lee who was a neighbor. John had a large family. John’s children that were still at home stayed at his house and he would visit them in the day time and keep things running at both households. They had two sons Leo John Lee born 29 July 1925, and Otto Lee 1 January 1927. [Otto was named after a good neighbor Otto Cook] Both sons were born in Hinckley.
After the birth of Otto, Harriet came down with a condition called “Milk Fever” or “Milk Leg”, and was an infection. Without the use of antibiotics, unknown at the time, it was often fatal. Harriet needed to be taken to Salt Lake where she could receive better medical care. She gathered her children, have made arrangements for them to stay with family and friends, and told them where she wanted them to stay. She died in Salt Lake 28 Feb 1927 leaving 9 of her own children, the youngest one month old. Otto went to live with a Bishop family in Hinckley. He drowned in cistern 3 August 1928. He was named after a very good neighbor, Otto Cook.
Harriet’s funeral sermon was given by Apostle Hinckley a neighbor and family friend. She was buried in the Hinckley Cemetery beside her first husband Norman Ingles Bliss.

[1] History of Harriet Theobald Bliss Lee by Jesse Max Bliss [her son].
[2] Ibid

Friday, August 14, 2015

History Norman Ingles Bliss 1875-1919

Norman Ingles Bliss, son of Norman Ingles and Lydia Mariah Stout Bliss, was born the 23 January 1875 at Toquerville, Utah. Norman Jr. was seven years old when his father was killed in a accident. His mother Lydia, then had her brother David (Stout) moved them from Toquerville to Rockville, Utah a town a few miles east.
Norman as a young man carried the mail in the Zion Canyon area. One of the places on his route he would have to lower the mail over a steep cliff, where another many would take it from there.

His mother, in the early part of 1884 married Cyrus M. Jennings. They had one son, David Stout Jennings, who later married Henrietta Webb.

Norman's mother died 14 Sept. 1888, leaving five children. Another son Stanford died (earlier) 29 May 1882. The other children are Fanny, Norman, Lillie, Alfred an David. Six months later Fanny married John P. Terry, she then had her sister and brothers come and live with her and John.

Norman married Mary Elizabeth Morris, the 31 Oct. 1895 at Rockville, Utah. She was the daughter of Daniel and Sophia Russell Morris. She was born the 16 of June 1878 at Grafton, Utah. To them was (sic) born five children; Clarence, Leon Clark, Oren Vernon, Maitlan and Earl Morris Bliss. Clarence was born in Rockville, Utah.
In 1897 they moved to Hinckley, Utah where the other four children were born. after arriving in Hinckley Norman jobbed around where ever he could get work. he worked for President Hinckley on his farm, and also hauled ore for him. Drum, a place about forty miles northwest of Hinckley, was were they hauled their ore from. There were quite a few people hauling ore and they would work together. Sometime in the early spring when the ground was thawing it would take them all day just to travel a mile. They would help each other pull their wagon(s) in the deep mud. It was so cold at nights that the horses would paw the ground trying to keep warm.

There was an old mine shaft that went down about three hundred feet. At the bottom it was full of water. They would hook a large wooden bucket on the end of a rope and lower it down the shaft to get water for their horses. the bucket would then be pulled up by a horse. One time this bucket got lodged at the bottom of the well. They tried all different ways to get it loose, but nothing seemed to work. Finally, Norman said that he would go down and try to free it. He put his back against one side and his feet against the other, then grasping the rope with his hands e went down the wall. There were some very exciting minutes waiting to hear from him that the bucket was free. After much maneuvering he freed the bucket and gave them the signal to pull it up.

Norman was considered a good boxer and he was quite often challenged by  new comers or they would have him box at different celebrations. Baseball was his favorite sport, at which he because very good. There was always baseball equipment around for his children to play with. Nearly all of sons became very good at the sport. His first wife, Mary, could play the organ, and he was a good singer. At parties and different occasions they would have his wife play and he would sing. While hauling ore or freight he would sing to pass the time.
He was considered a very good farmer, an expert in handling or horses, and a top driver in the hauling of freight. His horses were always taken good care of, and his equipment was in the best of condition. He was a good blacksmith and did all the shoeing of his horses. he owned a riding horse that he called Brownie, it was about the best roping horse in the country. Money could not buy this horse from Norman. A good fried of his, Alfred Jones, made him a raw hide quirt, and hackmore (sic), and a lariet (sic).
As a young man he would go out and catch wild horses, ride the, then just before he turned them loose he would pull out of their tail, by doing this he was able to collect enough horse hair to braid into a long rope. He was a very good horse trader, and seldom did he get beaten in a trade. He had the ability to look at an animal and tell if it would suit his purposes.
At one time the rail road washed out in the Southern part o the state, and he volunteered to take his horses and equipment and go down an help repair the washed out rail road. They loaded all their horses and equipment and shipped them down by rail.
On June 7 1907, his wife Mary died leaving Norman and five children, the youngest was just one and a half years old. Ten months later, on the first day of April, he married Harriet Theobald, the daughter of George and Naomi Ruth Tanner Theobald. She was born 30 March 1887 at Duncan's Retreat, Washington County Utah [town doesn't currently exist it was in the Rockville Utah area]. They were married in the Salt Lake Temple. After He and Harriet had been married and sealed to each other, they went through again, and Harriet acted as proxy for Norman’s first wife. Norman also had his five children sealed to him and Mary.

After Norman and Harriet's first child, Stanley, was born they moved to Abraham, a settlement, a few miles northwest of Hinkle. A Mr. Newton Woodruff and Mr. Howard had purchased a half section of land (320 acres). They hired Norman to run it. Normal was to furnish all the animals and they would furnish the equipment. they agreed to pay him $125.00 per month. Alfalfa and alfalfa seed was the main crop raised; sugar beets were also grown. One year they harvested 1400 bags of alfalfa seed, each bag weighing around 180 lbs. they received about 14 cents per pound.

Three children were born to them in Abraham; Mary Zelma (Zel), Charles Howard, and Theon Theobald (Bill) Bliss. Just before Howard was born, Norman had to go to Oak City. He told his son Clarence if anything came up that he was needed, he was to call by phone. A day or so later, Harriet told Clarence he had better call his dad, for she was already in pain. When Norman received word he borrowed the fastest horse he could get from Mr. Collier Lovell to make the trip. In just a little over an hour he had covered the distance from Oak City to Abraham, which is a little over twenty miles.
In 1915 they moved back to Hinckley and purchased a farm owned by David Stout. This farm was located about one mile north of Hinckley. Three mroe boys were born to them; Jesse Max, Ferron Lane, and George Ingles (Joe). This made a total of sever children born to Norman and Harriet. All together Norman was the father of eleven sons and one daughter.

In July, about a week after their last son was born, Normal had a terrible accident, which caused his death. he was getting ready to move a derrick they used to stack hay with, when the Jackson Fork got loose and swung around and one fork tine struck him in the back and penetrated his body. he suffered this terrible pain about three weeks before he passed away. He died the 12th day of August, 1919 at Hinckley, Millard County, Utah. (He actually was transported to Salt Lake where he died). He was buried in the Hinckley Cemetery beside his wife Mary.

The one thing that people said about Norman was that his word was as good as his bond.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Eliza Bliss Divorce Continued

Second hearing in divorce of Eliza Bliss. On the 11 July in 1872 Eliza gave birth to a daughter Lucy Francena Kane, in Holden, Utah. [transcribed as it appears in the filmed record-see previous post for LDS film number].

p 138

Territory of Utah} Probate Court in and for said

Millard County } County Special Term at 10 A. M.

on the 18th day of May A. D. 1872

Hon. E. Partridge Judge

Case of }

Eliza Bliss }

V.S. }

Michael Kain}

decision of the Court:

The Court considers that Eliza Bliss had not fully

sustained her case in regard to being scared into

signing the agreement before the Referes (sic); but no

one taking up for her, and not being of very strong mind

and also, what was said going to show that her friends

considered the offer of Michael Kain a liberal one, as much

or more than she deserved, the Court feels authorized

to make a new division of Property between the parties,

Mr. Kain married Eliza Bliss without the concent (sic)

of her only legal guardian and against the advice

of one of her friends or relatives, and after living with

her as her husband for several months leave her

enciente [pregnant], although there appears to the mind of the

Court sufficient grounds fo a Bill of Divorce, both

parties being willings, yet the Court does not consider that

Mr. Kain should leave Eliza Bliss in her present cir (sic)

circurstances(sic) and condition with no provision for her being

taken care of during her approaching sickness and the

maintainance(sic) of her ofspring (sic) should she have one living

Therefore the Court decides that Michael Kain give Eliza

Bliss what was agreed upon before the Referes (sic) if he has

not already done so, and in addition he shall provide

for her from this date through her confinement and

recovery with suitable care and attention by

furnishing her with board and lodging and someone

to wait on her: Also that Michael Kain place two

hundred ($200) in the hands of her Father

or some other person that may hereafter be agreed

upon by Mr. Kain and the Court for the benefit of

page 139

their mutual ofspring (sic), if anythere(sic) shall be, Provided

that said father of Eliza Bliss or such other person as

may be agreed upon by Mr. Kain and the Court, shall

give bonds for the proper management of said two hundred

dollars, to the satisfaction of the a selectmen* of the County

where said Father or other person, herin (sic) mentioned may

reside; And furthermore, whenever the offspring, afore

said shall die then the property aforesaid or as much

of it as much of it [phrase repeated twice] as may have necessarily been

used for the benefit and maintainance(sic) of the child

shall revert to the aforesaid Michael Kain.

Court awarded that the cost be paid by Michael



Judges frees $ 6.00 P

Clerks 4.00 P

Summons .50 P

Subpoena .25 P

5 depositions 1.25

6 witnesses 2.50

5 witnesses @ 150 9.00 P

Constable fees 3.00 P

Paid in full $26.00

Edward Partridge (signature)

Probate Judge

*not sure if this word is selectmen or not

Eliza Bliss Divorce

Eliza Bliss was the daughter of Norman Bliss Sr. and Sariah Lewis. I can find no record of her marriage, but here is her divorce at age 16 [she delivered a child couple of months after her divorce] Document is transcribed line by line as it appeared in the filmed record.

Film # 0482034

Millard County Utah Courthouse Filed at Fillmore July 5, 1966

Probate Court Record Book C, December 12, 1870 – November 18, 1887

p 136

Territory of Utah} Probate Court in and

Millard County} for Said County. Special

term May 15th 1872 at 11. A.M.

Hon Edw Partridge Judge

Case of }

Eliza Bliss }

V.S. } Demand a ridivision(sic) of

Michael Kain} Property

The Petition of Eliza Bliss was read by the


The parties were ready for trial and the witnesses

were present.

Eliza Bliss said she was married to Michael Kain and

lived with him six months, I was scared, by

parties saying saying (sic) if this case went to Fillmore

my character would be down forever.

Wm R Teeples as the third man he advised them

to make it up and live together. But Kain would not

make up. Eliza was willing to try it longer. He

advised them to settle it themselves, as Kain offered her

$50.00. Father Harmon said, that is a liberal offer.

He Teeples, said he be damned if he thought it was right.

We signed the division of property, but it was made

by themselves and not by us as Refferees (sic). Wee (sic) thought

there was some undue influences used to make her

sign the agreement. After he gave a cow he thought

it was liberal.

Sidney Teeples gave testimony that would tend to urge

her to accept the offer of Kain. He thought she was frigh-

tened to accept, by Father Harmon and her Mother. The hous

hold (sic) property was worth $35.00

Deposition of Nicholas Teeples was read

page 137

Michale Cain said he came here 2 ½ years ago. I got acq-

uainted with Miss Bliss and married her. He tried to have her

do right so people would have no excuse to talk about him,

she said a man came to her and offired(sic) her money and her

mother sent him. This man wanted her to go to salt Kaynon

with him. I could not stand it any longer. She said

her mother gave her poison to give to him and he was

afraid of his life. She would take laudanum

and have

fits and run out into the Cedars. She took Poison again

and tried to die. She would throw things in the fire and

burn them up when she got mad. She stole a dollars

of Mrs. Colby, she also stole factory. She never told one

one(sic) truth while we lived together.

Deposition of Nancy Harmon [and of

Letty Stevens were read by the clerk

E. E. Dodge said the, matter was settled by

the parties to their satisfaction. He never heard a

word said to intimidate her. Father Harmon said

he thought it was a liberal offer.

Jesse P. Harmon never heard a word said to frighten


Ransford Colby gave evidence corroberating(sic)

Kains statement

Margret Colby gave the same testimony

Sarah Tyler her mother never said a word to intimidate her

non did any one else in my hearing.

Naomy Colby said he talked very bad to Kain.

David Savage for the Plaintiff made some


Isiah Huntsman for the Defendant made

some remarks

Court took the case under advisement until next

Saturday the 18th day of May inst.[within the same month]] at 10 A. M.

Court adjourned sine die [without day]

Edward Partridge [signature] Probate Judge