Letter to granddaughter creates an addendum to the story of Alma Raymond and Rose Pitcher
Colaborador: Jane Little Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
This is a transcription written 26 of March 2002 of a letter written in 1975 by Ireta Pitcher Raymond to me, Sandra Raymond Jarvis. I had asked my grandmother, Ireta, to tell me the story of the triplets born to Grandma Rose. I have tried to follow the original as closely as I could figure it out.
The Life Story of Alma & Rose Raymond
Rose Ella Phillipa Pitcher was the daughter of John and Rebecca Brown Pitcher Jr. She was born 17 Oct. 1873 in Smithfield.
She married Erle Ewing, son of John Jackson and Rebecca Smith Ewing. He was born 18 Feb 1871 in Smithfield. They were married Sept. 1900.
Alma Raymond was born 3 Jun 1871, son of Alonzo Pearce and Elizabeth Raymond. He married Cordelia Jane Ewing, daughter of John Jackson and Rebecca Smith Jackson [Ewing?], brother or Erle.
Rose and Erle had 6 children - Zelda B. 23 April 1901. Lois B. 1 Nov. 1902. Martell B. 24 June 1904. Myrle 12 Mar 1906. LaRue 29 Dec 1907. Cordelia 12 July 1909. Alma & Cordelia was married 14 April 1892 (maybe a 6 written over it.).
Alma and Cordelia Raymond had children - Alma Ewing B. 5 [maybe 15] Feb 1896. Wickliff Clayton B.13 Mar 1898. Glen B. 4 May 1900. Florence B. 13 Oct 1902. Shele B. 12 May 1906. Mother Cordelia had cancer & was in bed all 9 months of pregnancy. The baby girl was born 11 June 1913. Cordelia finally went and stayed with her mother, Rebecca Smith Ewing and died in Sept, 1913.
Erle Ewing had diabetes, was just skin & bones. They lived in a little 2 room log house just across the street from Alma & Rose. He [Erle] was too ill to work. Had no way of making a living for his children so he bootlegged. (Liquor) The city officials didn’t try to stop him as he had no other way of support for his family. The house was 2 log rooms & a shanty at the E. of the house, but not attached. Erle died in Aug. 1917.
Alma & Rose lived in a little home that belonged to Alma’s mother, Grandma Raymond.
(Elizabeth). It consisted of one small room on the E. that she used for all purposes. And it was an outside toilet. On Alma’s side of the house there was a fairly good kitchen. Just a kitchen cabinet. A small room about 2 ft. wider than a double bed. No doors either into the kitchen or living room. Curtains to pull & a pretty good sized living room.
After Clate’s mother died, he & his Dad started to buy the Gilt Edge Mill at the cross roads west of Richmond. Clate was putting nearly all his wages into the mill he & his Dad were trying to buy it. But after Erle Ewing died, he [Alma] spent most of his time with Rose. He left Clate alone at the mill to do everything. He, [Clate] couldn’t keep it up so they lost it all. $1500.00. That was a lot of money.
One of Rose’s Girls was Zelda. Alma & Rose were married in April & she [Zelda] got pregnant in Aug. You can imagine Alma’s reactions. Rose’s family were still sleeping over at the old house. Ewing had got married the Aug before, so Clate, Glen & Shele slept up in the attic. Florence went and lived with Aunt Kate & Uncle Wick, he was Cordelia’s brother. They had 4 daughters. She lived there 4 years.
About this time Martell was old enough to work for farmers. He had got a job with Brown Wood over in Amalga. They had a daughter that had just received a diamond engagement ring. In a few days it came up missing. Of course, they soon traced it to Mart. They arrested him. They gave him his choice of going to prison for 2 years or going into the Navy for 2 years. He went into the Navy.
After Zelda’s baby was born, it was a little girl, Alma insisted she get rid of it. Zelda was working down at the café & anyone & everyone was helping to take care of it. Sometimes it got fed too often & others she went hungry, crying all the time. They were trying to keep her quiet with paregoric.
Alma & Rose’s boy, Myrle, didn’t get along. Alma had ordered him to stay off the place. He was only about 16. He had a night job doing something, but didn’t have a place to sleep and wanted to know if he could sleep at our place. I only had one bed & no extra bedding, but I told him he could sleep there during the day. Can you imagine the reaction when Clate got home? He slept there and I cooked breakfast for him for about 2 months. Clate called him Ireta’s Star Border [Boarder].
Well, at this time, Rose got pregnant. She was 39 & Alma was 47. It really was tragic. She kept getting larger and larger. Those days you had your babys [sic] at home. Grandma Elizabeth Raymond, Alma’s mother, was the mid-wife. She was 82 years old. There was triplets; one still born. They weighed about 2 ½ lbs. The only was to care for them was in shoe boxes & then in the rocking chair in front of the circulating heater with a blanket around them.
They only lived 2 days. The one that was still-born Alma just took out & buried it in the orchard. Church officials heard about it & made him get cemetery permits & bury it in the cemetery.
About this time Zelda had put her baby up for adoption. A professor, Dr. Merrill from the Utah State Agricultural college adopted her. Zelda never had any more children. She married [Frederick Kenneth] Dine. They moved to California & she adopted a little girl.
In Nov. 1917, Clate & I had been going together off & on, more off than on, for 3 years and decided to get married in Nov. When we told his Dad; his Dad thought we were too young & said he had called for a meeting with the bishop who was his mother’s brother - Bp. C. J. Plowman. They decided we were too young. I lacked one month of being 18 & Clate lacked 3 months of being 20. Boy, was I boiling! After Alma got married the next May, & all the kids & confusion, in the fall he asked Clate why he didn’t get married.
Every time Rose would have trouble which was often, she would pack her whole family up & go down to her mothers.
After Alma’s death, Rose tried several times through her bishop & her stake presidency to see if she could get a Church divorce from Alma. She & Erle were just married by a civil judge. When she and Alma were married they went to the temple. Alma & Cordelia had married in the Temple. And what I think was sure simple was she allowed herself to be sealed to Alma.
Rose’s girls now have done the work for their Dad & would like to get a [temple] divorce so they could have their mother & the family sealed to him. . [Eventually the policy was changed, allowing a deceased woman to be sealed to all of her deceased husbands. The sealing for Erle and Rose was performed 6 June 1991 in the Seattle, Washington Temple.]
They named the two boys that lived a couple of days - Arom & Owen [Maybe Oran].
Sandra, I have all kinds of records you could get a lot of information right from me.
That’s a lovely picture that was taken at Gwens. I got the negative & had it enlarged.
Love, Grandma [Ireta] Raymond