Eleanor Homer Harper (1884 - 1955)
Colaborador: NottsGraves Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
written by her daughter, Ruby Adelia Harper Andrew
Ella, as she was always called at home, was born in Clarkston, Cache County, Utah, on June 7, 1884. She was the seventh child born to Benjamin John Homer and Mary Adelia Petty Homer. The older brothers and sisters were William Harrison Homer, Benjamin Petty Homer, John Albert Homer, Mary Adelia Homer, Nellie Maud Homer and Russell King Homer. The younger siblings were Francis “Frank” Homer, Robert Earl Homer, James Edgar Homer, Rosetta Homer and Joseph Petty Homer. She grew up with her brothers and sisters at the family farm in Trenton, Utah, and there received her schooling. Her father passed away when she was only ten years old.
She was of a very serious nature and believed everyone meant exactly what they said and took things very seriously to do much joking. She accepted responsibility very early in life and was always ready and willing to do her part in any task required of her or the family. She was kind and good to her mother and all the family. She was friendly but very much reserved. She didn't enjoy crowds but did like personal friends. She was quiet by nature and one of her neighbors said it was always “restful” to visit her, because of her disposition. She was not inclined to gossip or speak disrespectfully of people, she was more inclined to see a justification for the irregular situation. She was not a person to visit her neighbors, but in time of need she was always the first to respond to see what help she could be, and she always continued to help as long as there was a need for her services. She was neither proud nor haughty, and was always neat and clean and very presentable under all conditions.
At the age of twenty-three years and six months she married Archie John Harper of Smithfield, Utah. A.J. Merrill performed the ceremony on December 4, 1907, at the first home of the couple. Their friends and family had come that evening to have a party, and were pleasantly surprised to witness the ceremony. Their first home was a red brick located on the corner of 300 South and 300 West in Smithfield. They lived there for three years and then bought 20 acres of land in Trenton and built a small home there.
Ella was an excellent cook and “homey” homemaker. Her homemade bread couldn't be beat. She was very systematic in her work and scheduled her time to use it to the best advantage. There was never a more devoted wife and mother than Ella. As a Bishop's wife she accepted many of the farm responsibilities so her husband could carry on with his church work and public duties. She worried about the Bishop and tried to have his meals ready when he could eat, and she did everything to make his load lighter. Her two daughters also were by her side in hoeing and weeding the crops. She always made it a practice to serve lemonade and cookies or cake to the field help at 10:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. as well as a big dinner at noon for the help when they worked in the hay and the silage. The day the church was dedicated she served dinner to thirty people, including President David O. McKay and Sister McKay and visiting church officials.
For a year or so the ward had to furnish pork for the welfare assessment, and Ella raised and cared for the pigs until they were ready for market and the pigs were moist meat.
Her children were William Archie, who was born August 9, 1916, Ruby Adelia who was born July 15, 1922, and Ruth Janett who was born September 4, 1924. They were all born at the family home in Trenton, Utah.
One of the saddest events in the life of Ella was the death of William on November 8, 1936. William was a quiet boy, a hard worker, and accepted at a very early age the responsibilities for the farm and dairy cows. His death in early manhood was a great shock and cause of sorrow in the home.
On June 22, 1940, Ruby married Normand J Andrew, and on August 11, 1945, Ruth married John Lewis Kelly.
After living in Trenton for thirty-nine years they sold their home and farm there and moved to Smithfield for their retirement years. They enjoyed trips to visit their daughters, sons-in-law and their five granddaughters. Ruth had lived in Boise, Idaho, Medford, Oregon, and Spokane Washington. Ruby lived in LaConner, Washington. They drove each year until Archie's health began to fail rapidly in early 1952 and after a cancer surgery he passed away on July 13, 1952. He was buried in the Smithfield Cemetery beside his son, William.
Ella enjoyed doing handwork, sewing and working with flowers. She always had many beautiful houseplants. After Archie's death she assisted Mrs. Pearl Gordon, her next door neighbor, with her flower arranging at her floral shop and she loved it.
Ella was an extremely independent person all her life, never permitting anyone to do a thing for her that she could do for herself. She enjoyed her move to Smithfield, where she could walk to church, the post office, and the stores. She was active until the time of her death. She had a heart attack the evening of October 6, 1955, and was laid to rest beside her husband and son in the Smithfield Utah Cemetery.
Archie John Harper (1885 - 1952)
Colaborador: NottsGraves Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
written by his daughter, Ruby Adelia Harper Andrew - May 1966
Archie John Harper was born February 15, 1885, at Smithfield, Cache County, Utah. He was the fourth child born to William Faulkner Harper and Elenor Janette Morrell Harper. He had four brothers and two sisters. Those elder were Ellen (Nellie), Richard, William and those younger were Joseph, Ruby and Earl.
When he was two years old, his younger brother, Joseph, who was ten months old, died. When he was five two of his brothers, Richard and William, were drowned in the creek at Smithfield. Shortly after the birth of his fourth brother, Earl, his mother died. Archie was five and a half at the time.
His early childhood was spent very close to home. He received his schooling at the grade school in Smithfield, As a boy, and later in life, he enjoyed different sports, hunting and fishing. His father's business of farming seemed to appeal to him and from early youth he learned to work hard and follow closely the pattern of life his father enjoyed. His father was very precise in his way of doing things and his good qualities in agriculture were passed on to his son. Archie took great pride in his farm and strived constantly to improve the soil and the yield per acre of crops. This was especially true in growing potatoes. Year after year he excelled in quality as well as quantity of potatoes grown on an acre of ground. He was particular in the selection of the seed, and he rotated his crops in an orderly manner. He knew just when to irrigate and the amount of water to apply. Harvesting potatoes was hard work, but there was always a joy and satisfaction in seeing the long rows of sacks uniformly places in the field filled with uniform potatoes. Potatoes used in the county fair were usually selected from the Harper farm. His opinion was sought by potato growers far and near. Sugar beets, peas, corn, tomatoes and alfalfa were usually the crops raised. A weed on the land was a rarity. He believed in keeping the children busy and out of mischief, so the girls spent most of the summer in the field with a hoe. Through better breeding and care of animals, the Harper family has helped bring the Cache Valley and Utah the attention of dairymen over the country.
On December 4, 1907, he was married to Eleanor (Ella) Homer, at Smithfield, Utah. A. J. Merrill performed the ceremony at their home. Their first home was a red and white brick house, built by James Thornley, and located on the corner of 300 West and 300 North. Archie's sister, Ellen (Nellie) had previously married Ella's brother, William Homer, so this made a double marriage in the family. They lived in Smithfield for three years and then purchased 20 acres of irrigated land in Trenton, located two and a half miles south of town. They built a small frame home there. It was in this home that their three children were born, William Archie on August 2, 1918, Ruby Adelia on July 15, 1922, and Ruth Janette on September 4, 1924. Just before Ruby's birth, Archie and Ella were sealed in the Logan LDS Temple. Archie was very fond of children and when a cousin was teasing him after the birth of William, about not getting much sleep, he said “Don't you see, before the baby was here I got one sleep each night, now I get a lot of them!” He was proud of his family and had bought additional land in hopes that William would work a farm next to him one day. The land was located directly west of the original farm.
In 1927 they built a brick home on the farm, the nicest and most convenient of that time. This is the home the children remember growing up in. They sold their first home to Arland Fackrell and he moved it to his farm. Later this farm was purchased by Merlin Andrew and it was his first home. Archie's father made his home with Archie and Ella for some years preceding his death. His father died on October 12, 1930.
Archie had very little contact with the church in his early life. Circumstances that came into his life directed it that way. His mother died when he was real young and his father took no part in church activities, although he lived very close to most of the higher principles of the gospel. Their home was located some distance from town and he did not associate with those who were inclined to go to church. According to a story told by a Mrs. Marcella , an employee of the Genealogical Society of Utah, Archie was very inactive and bitter because of the many heartaches that had come into his life, especially after the death of his brother, Earl. Earl had fulfilled a mission for the Church in England, had returned to Smithfield and had joined the army to return to Europe during the World War I. He was killed just a week before the armistice. Archie could not understand why this should occur, or where justice was at this time. Mrs. Marcella , father, , then a counselor in the Smithfield Ward Bishopric, counseled with him for some time and it was through the efforts of this man that Archie was brought into activity in the Church. But, something like Paul, when comes the light of the truth came into his life, he was touched all over and tried from then on to make up for lsot time. As a convert to the Church he was eager to do his part, and do it well, as he had been over the years in all the things he had been interested in.
In early 1922 he was called to serve as a counselor to Bishop Elmer Robson in the Trenton Ward Bishopric. Albert Brough was the counselor and Ray S. Hansen was Ward Clerk. Bishop Robson did not own a car so Archie furnished all the transportation for the Bishopric. On May 3, 1930, Archie was sustained as Bishop of the Trenton Ward, Henson Stake, with Cliff Wiser and Frank Bybee as counselors, and Ray S. Hansen as clerk. About a year later Brother Bybee asked to be released because of health. Kefford Peek was sustained as second counselor in his place.
During the period of time from 1937 until the dedication of the new church building on February 9, 1941, the ward members worked hard and sacrificed for their new building in which to worship. These were the depression years and money was scarce. The ward was in debt when Archie was sustained as Bishop, and to help clear the debt the ward rented the first church farm from Luella Hunter for four or five years. With the money from this the organ, benches, and many of the things used today (1958) in the ward were purchased, as well as the old debts being cleared up. Archie was a good manager and financier. Kefford Peek tells of an experience while working on the new chapel. They were constructing the baptismal font shortly before the dedication of the building. Brother Peek said, “Bishop, you look tired.” Archie replied, “Brother Peek, I am tired. If when I die I find out there isn't anything to what I believe or have been preaching, somebody is going to get hell!” Brother Peek has told that he was often felt the same way in his positions of leadership as a Bishop and Stake President.
Cliff Wiser tells of the Bishopric visiting every family in the ward once each year for the eleven years they were in the Bishopric together. He recalled many times of their special prayers before going to help or give counsel with ward members on their problems, and he testifies that a greater power than man's helped them. When Dora Merrill was suffering with a stroke the Bishopric never missed a day going to her home to give her a blessing. She was paralyzed and couldn't speak, but she was relieved of her pain to some extent.
He was good to the poor in the ward, if he doubted their worthiness to receive church assistant he gave to them of his personal food as they needed. His church duties and responsibilities were never neglected. They were done when needed. If he had to get to the car and go to Salt Lake to get help from the general authorities he did this. He was a great counselor and anyone who took his counsel benefited by it.
Probably the happiest day in his life was the day the Trenton Ward chapel was dedicated. The building was a great asset to the town, and a big improvement over the classrooms that were formed by drawing curtains throughout the one large chapel room as had previously been done in the old church building. It also served another purpose, in that the recreation hall was continually busy with young people in their MIA sponsored activities, especially basketball, so all ages could really enjoy the building. It was a dream come true and a climax of years of planning, sacrifice, worry and hard work. President David O. McKay, a counselor to Heber J. Grant, dedicated the building on February 9, 1941. Shortly after on March 16, 1941, Archie was released as Bishop, after serving faithfully for 19 years as a counselor and Bishop. He had a strong testimony as to the truthfulness of the gospel, and he enjoyed his time of service to others.
Probably the saddest experience to Archie and Ella was the death of their son, William, on November 8, 1936. The parents always grieved over his passing. His death certificate lists the cause of death as a brain abscess.
On June 22, 1940, Ruby was married to Normand J Andrew, and on August 11, 1945, Ruth was married to John Lewis Kelly.
Archie realized that he was THE family representative left bearing the Harper name. He was the only son living in his family, and his father was an only son, and with the death of William this eliminated the perpetuation of the Harper name. He spent much time and money in research for genealogy. Also he enjoyed going to the Logan Temple as often as his work would permit.
Archie was very serious in this thinking and planning. He was forthright in all he said, no one was mistaken in what he thought, he didn't say one thing to your face and another to your back. He may not have been as tactful at times as others would have been. He was true blue to those he considered his friends. He wanted no fanfare from anyone for kindnesses he extended. He gave service whether to individuals or people, from the depth of his soul, and he never forgot a kindness extended to him. One of his greatest virtues was honesty, both in word and deed. He had very little use for anyone he couldn't depend upon.
He served as manager for the West Cache Irrigation Canal for some years. His health began to fail and he sold his farm to Rex Reed, the son of a neighbor. They moved to Smithfield, Utah, to spend their retirement years. In early 1952 he became quite seriously ill with cancer, and on July 13, 1952, he passed away in Smithfield. He was buried in the Smithfield City Cemetery next to his son, William.
Funeral Services of Sister Eleanor Homer Harper
Colaborador: NottsGraves Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
Held October 10, 1955
Prayer in the home by Sam Sorensen
Our Father which art in Heaven, we the members of the family and close associates of Sister Harper meeting here at this time before departing to the meeting house, feel to offer unto Thee the thanks and gratitude of our hearts for the manner which Sister Harper has been taken, that she has been spared the suffering and sickness that usually accompanies age and the precedence of death. We feel to recognize Thy hand in all things and, especially at this time, in the departure of Sister Harper and we ask Thee to bless those who remain here on earth that we may always be mindful
of her life, character and the example she has set and that we may emulate to the greatest degree the things that she has taught us and set before us and we thank Thee for her life and our association with her. Now as we depart to the meeting house where the service will be held, we pray that Thy blessings will continue to be with us that nothing of a harmful nature will befall us we ask these things in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
Funeral Services conducted by Bishop Robert S. Budge
Remarks: Bishop Robert Budge
My dear brothers and sisters and friends, it is certainly nice to see such a great number out today to pay last respects to Sister Harper. We will certainly miss her a great deal. She was always willing to help her neighbors and be kind to everyone who came by. I feel very left out in that I didn't know her somewhat better, but from everyone else who has been near her, I feel that she is certainly a queen with her thoughts and her doings. One word that I would like to leave with the family at this time is that it seems a great sorrow to them but we are the only people in the world who can have a feeling of joy at the time of death because we know that we are close at hand and are present today and the time element will be very short, relatively, until you will be joined with your mother again.
The opening song will be "The Lord is My Shepherd" by the Choir, and the opening prayer will be given by Bishop Archie Cottle.
Song: The Lord is My Shepherd
The Lord is my shepherd, no want shall I know,
I feed in green pastures, safe folded I rest.
He leadesth my soul where the still waters flow,
Restores me when wandering, redeems when oppressed,
Restores me when wandering, redeems when oppressed.
Through the valley and shadow of death tho' I stray,
Since Thou art my guardian, no evil I fear.
They rod shall defend me; Thy staff be my stay;
No harm can befall, with my comforter near;
No harm can befall with my comforter near.
Opening Prayer: Bishop Archie Cottle
Our Father in Heaven, according to appointment, we the family, relatives and friends of Sister Ella Homer Harper, have assembled in this beautiful chapel to pay respects for this, Thy daughter, whom Thou hast seen fit to call home and we who have been privileged to enjoy her association, we were indeed blessed by her quiet, retiring spirit, her understanding of the gospel and her testimony, that she had and that I have heard her bear in the home, of the divinity of the gospel. We are thankful, Our Father in Heaven, for the gospel and that it teaches us that she is now in the companionship of her husband and son and the others who have departed before her. Therefore, we are not concerned with her state for we know because of the life she led, it is well with her, but we are concerned, our Father, for those of us who are left behind who have been blessed with her association and who now bear her memory. May we follow the example which she has given in her quiet way, the teachings for good that she has administered to those whom she has contacted and we ask Thee to bless her daughters and their daughters especially. Here was a life well spent. She has served well. She has done her duty. She has been a loving daughter, a good wife and a wonderful mother. May they follow in her footsteps. May Thy spirit administer to them to give them comfort and joy in the knowledge they have of the place she will take now. We ask this blessing to be with all of us that we might understand our responsibility, that we might try to live for the blessings that are ours and will be ours. Inasmuch as we have gathered here to pay tribute, may Thy spirit be with us that those who speak and those who sing might do so in a pleasing way unto Thee and unto themselves and be gratifying and consoling to those who listen. We ask for these blessings, and ask forgiveness for our shortcomings and imperfections, we humbly pray in the name of Thy Son, Jesus Christ, Amen.
Speaker: Bishop Cliff Wiser
My Brothers and Sisters, I have been extremely honored today in this assignment to take some little part in this program. It is my humble desire that I might enjoy the spirit of this occasion, that I might relate some things to you that would be interesting and uplifting. It has certainly been a rich experience in my life to be associated with the Harper and Homer families. Eleanor (Ella) Home Harper was born June 7, 1884 in Clarkston, a daughter of Benjamin John and Mary Adelia Petty Homer. She received her education in Cache County schools, had been active throughout her life in L.D.S. Church auxiliaries, especially in the Relief Society. Mr. Harper was Bishop of the Trenton Ward for many years. The couple were married on December 4, 1907 in the Logan L.D.S. Temple. Bishop Harper died in July 1952. Surviving Mrs. Harper are two daughters, Mrs. Norman (Ruby) Andrew, La Conner, Washington, and Mrs. John (Ruth) Kelly, Spokane, Washington; six brothers and one sister: William H. Homer, Logan, J. Albert Homer, Long Beach, California, Russell K. Homer, Venice, California, Frank Homer, ElMonte, California, James Edgar Homer, Montpelier, Idaho, Joseph Homer, Paramount, California, Mrs. Nellie Sparks, Trenton, Utah, and five granddaughters.
It seems from reading this that you realize that Sister Ella Homer is a member of a large family of pioneer stock. I am told that her grandfather, Russell King Homer, was born in New York and came to Pennsylvania where he first met the Prophet Joseph Smith. He attended a meeting at which the Prophet spoke and he was so impressed with his spiritual counsel and advice and the doctrine he taught, that after the meeting was over, he went up and shook hands with the prophet and as he did so, he left a $20.00 gold piece in the prophet's hand. The prophet looked at him and said, "Brother Homer, you will never want for food for you and your family." I am told that this good pioneer joined the church, crossed the plains with an ox team and made many other trips across the plains and that the promise has been fulfilled in every instance. He passed through tribes of Indians unmolested, was never without plenty of grub and the Indians found nothing in him but a friend. Neither did they try to molest him or harm him on his journey. Hence, the $20.00 investment was a good insurance policy that the Lord had given him. The story is also told that as a boy, he used to go out in the open spaces and gather up the bones he saw and build a fence with them and that was the way he liked to spend his play hours. One day a man delivered a parcel to him and asked if he was Mr. Homer. He replied, "Yes." The man then said, "This parcel is from Martin Harris." He opened the parcel and it was the Book of Mormon. A voice then came to him and said, "This is the history of the bones of the people you have loved to play with so." He made a great study of that book and become a great instigator in promotion truth.
My first recollection of Sister Harper was when I was a boy about 10 years old. My father and his family were over on the place where I live now, putting up hay. When evening came, my father said that I should stay there all night and take care of the horses, water them and feed them and the rest of the family would go home and milk the cows and take care of things there. The next morning when I arose, I was watering the horses with a good old pump that you worked up and down to get a little stream of water and pumped enough water for 16 heads of horses. There was a mare and a little colt and in watering the horses, the little colt kicked me 3 or 4 times in the stomach. Just as the lights went out, I saw the team and buggy pull in the gate and I knew I wasn't alone. My father picked me up and told my sister, who had come to cook the noon meal for us, to take me home. We got in the buggy and when we got in front of the old Homer home, where Nellie now lives, I got so sick and weak, I thought I was going to faint, and my sister turned the house into the Homer home. There were three ladies that came out of the house. They gave me what I needed and it relieved the pressure in my abdomen and the pain, and my sister went on her way. I did remember the mother and the two daughters, which Nellie tells me was she and her sister Ella, and their mother. I mention this to bring out a point. It didn't matter whether it was a stranger or whether it was a member of the family, if something happened that was unfortunate they were taken into their home with the greatest of sympathy and kindness, given any attention that they would give their son. That taught me quite a lesson through my life. When I moved to Trenton in 1926, Bishop Harper was a member of the Bishopric. I went to see them one evening and Sister Harper came out and said supper was ready and insisted that I come in and join them. Ruby and Ruth were small children then. I have never set down to a nicer meal than I did on that occasion served in a small two room house. It is the home Merlin Andrew lives in now. The home was fixed up like a palace and many times since then, I have had the honor of setting with my feet under the table at meals and found her to be a genuine cook and a very fine and loving homemaker. She was a lady that was quiet and reserved and I don't know of anybody that had more ability to mind her own business than did Sister Harper. She never interfered in anybody's doing. No man could be a good bishop without the help of a good wife and Sister Harper certainly gave Archie her support during her husband's labor in the bishopric. Archie was called in to the bishopric as a counselor in 1922 until 1930 and was then made bishop and served for 11 more years as bishop. It was my privilege and honor, along with Brother Frank Bybee, to work as his counselors. This made a total of 19 years that Archie gave to church service, and you know Archie, know that if he undertook a job, it wasn't satisfactory to him until he had done everything he knew how to make it a success. I feel that my life has been richer and has been better through my experience with the Harper family. I have been neighbors since that time with to her sister Nellie and I find them to be exactly the same caliber of people. I think it was Abraham Lincoln who said that the Lord must have loved the common people because he made so many of them, and I can surely go along with that. I think that the Homers are people of high caliber, community minded men and women, people who are willing to roll up their sleeves and do whatever was necessary to build roads, bridges, churches and to do whatever was necessary to make things move along and make things good. As I knew them, they were not people who enjoyed getting up in public, getting up before classes as instructors, but when it came to real work, there was no finer people and no better workers than the Homer people and I am very grateful for my experience with them.
These girls, Ruby and Ruth, were raised in that home to be honorable and upright and I am sure that they have exemplified that in their teachings to their children. For some time now, they have been away from us and it has been hard for them to accept an assignment of this kind when their mother was so far away from them, but I believe I have heard them both express the thought that they were so happy that their mother could leave in the manner she did and how fortunate she was to get out of the drudgery of sickness, physical deformities, heart attack, that could have left her an invalid for a time and Ella wouldn't have liked that and neither would the girls and if I knew Archie Harper, I feel sure that he is a happy today to have by his side his companion with their only son, William, and so I think this, in some sense of the word, should be a time of rejoicing to those who have passed beyond at a former day.
I have a testimony of the divinity of this work. I know that it is true. I know that if we live as we should and make and earnest effort to promote the work of his kingdom, we will be doing the will of the Father and when our time comes, we will receive as, I am sure, Sister Harper has received.
I sympathize with her closest neighbor, this brother and sister who were so neighborly to her and who looked after her and who Sister Harper visited so often. I am sure that they will miss her. I am sure that it isn't Sister Harper's thought to leave quite as quick as she did but when it came to her, she had no choice.
May God bless her family, her near relatives and friends. May we be as prepared to go and meet our Maker as she was, are the blessings I humbly ask in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen
Trio: "Softly and Tenderly" LaFaye Sorenson, Leone Chambers and Mary Pitcher
Accompanied by Martha Poulson
"Softly and tenderly, Jesus is calling, calling for you and for me.
See at the portals he's waiting and watching,
watching for you and for me.
Come home, come home, ye who are weary, come home.
Earnestly, Tenderly, Jesus is calling, calling for you and for me.
Why should we tarry when Jesus is pleading,
Pleading for you and for me.
Why should we linger and head not his mercies,
Mercies for you and for me.
Think of the wonderful love he has promised,
Promised for you and for me.
All we have sinned He has pardoned,
Pardoned for you and for me.
Come home, come home, ye who are weary come home.
Earnestly, tender, Jesus is calling, calling for you and for me.
Speaker: Bishop Vern Toolson
My Brothers and Sisters, I hope and pray that I can render my part on this program as lovely and as nice as this trio has rendered their song. I think it was Lincoln who said "Music is the universal language of mankind." Carlisle said, "It is the speech of angels," and I believe it brings us closer to our Heavenly Father than anything there is.
I feel it a distinct honor to have this privilege of saying a few words at these services this afternoon. The poet has said, "Tis what we are, not what we claim to be, that helps to shape the common destiny, It is what we are that speaks the loudest through, not what we say but rather what we do."
I thought that since the death of Sister Ella Harper how I have admired the lovely traits of character which she possessed, the things she did that a lot of us did not know, her devotion to her husband and home, the kind of a mother she was to her children and always kind and loving to her neighbors. I would like to read what the Lord says about this kind of an individual. It is found in Proverbs: "Who can find a virtuous woman for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband does safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil." Brother Archie Harper could trust her in every particular. "She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands. She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth food from afar. She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens. She considereth a field and buyeth it; with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard. She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms. She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff." The success that is attained, both spiritual and financial, she can have 50 percent of the credit.
"She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy. She is not afraid of the snow for her household; for all her household are clothed with scarlet. She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple. Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land. She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant. Strength and honor are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come. She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness." We have had the kindness that she did reiterated by Bishop Wiser.
"She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her." We know that to be true because there is no person to take the place of mother. " Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all. Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates." I think that the life she has lived, she will be praised by her Father in Heaven who is the righteous judge.
The other thing, the important thing in her life was that she was a good Latter-Day Saint. What do we believe in as Latter-Day Saint people? We believe in a family relationship, that husband and wife, father and mother and children shall again be reunited providing we live up to the commandments which the Lord, our God, has given us. Wouldn't it be dreadful if we believed as other people do, that "If in this life only we have hope of Christ we are of all men the most miserable." On the other hand, are the people who understand the principles of the gospel and we know beyond the shadow of a doubt that this is not the end, that we, in the probationary state, if we live up to the teachings that have been revealed to us, we will be again reunited. I often think on these occasions of Mary and Martha when they came to Jesus and they had implicit faith in his teachings saying if he had come a little sooner, when their brother was sick, that he would not have died. After Jesus came to them, He said and uttered one of the greatest statements He ever uttered in his life, "I am the resurrection and the life, he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live." He raised Lazarus back to mortal life. He had that power and it was acknowledged by the people who lived there at that time.
Now I would like to say a word or two in reference to those who will come forth in the morning of the resurrection. We are told that "by man came death into the world and also by man came the resurrection of the dead, for in Adam we all die and even so in Christ shall we all be made alive." Who are those who keep the commandments of the Lord. When Christ came, what did He do? He came for a twofold purpose, the first one was to redeem us from the fall of Adam. The important one to us is the second one, the principles of life and salvation were taught by Him, He gave us the principles of the gospel and opened up the way to the Celestial Kingdom of God. We start out with baptism and go on up the ladder and keep them all if we can. Sister Ella Harper and Brother Archie Harper have complied with these commandments. Those are the ones who the Lord, our Savior, is going to come to first. They are the ones resurrected from the grave first, according to the scriptures, and will receive their exaltation and salvation in the Kingdom of Heaven. Brother and sisters, we have everything to be thankful for. When I think of the death of Sister Ella, it has been my pleasure to be in her company quite often since coming to Smithfield, she died as she lived, unassuming. She didn't want to be a burden to anyone. How kind and gracious our Heavenly Father was to call her home like that. It was a blessing.
I wish to read some words to these lovely girls and their husbands. It is entitled "O Hearts Bereaved" by Winifred M. Tibbs:
Be comforted and know that God is just,
He knows the pain that parting brings from those we love.
But they are HIs and when He calls them home,
it is His will and we must yield and thankful be,
For knowledge that he has given, that death is not the end
But the beginning of a better, happier life,
Where time is not gauged by day or years but by eternal plan.
Be brave, O hearts bereaved, and keep the faith
And then when we are called, we, too, shall live again
And mingle with the ones we leave throughout eternity.
Be reconciled and wait.
I pray that we who are left may honor and revere and emulate the fine life of Sister Ella Harper, that we may be brothers in this church of ours and always have sympathy and love for our neighbors, I pray in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Closing Song: Choir Abide With Me, Tis Eventide
Abide with me! fast falls the eventide;
The darkness deepens. Lord, with me abide!
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, oh, abide with me!
Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day.
Earth’s joys grow dim; its glories pass away.
Change and decay in all around I see;
O thou who changest not, abide with me!
I need thy presence ev’ry passing hour.
What but thy grace can foil the tempter’s pow’r?
Who, like thyself, my guide and stay can be?
Thru cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me!
Closing Prayer: Brother Robert Reeder
Our Father in Heaven, at the close of these beautiful services, we feel to render unto Thee the thanks and gratitude of our hearts for the privilege we have had of knowing this good sister who has been a mother to all we contacted. We thank Thee for the example she has set, for the advice and instructions she has given us, as friends and neighbors, throughout her life. We ask Thee to bless us that we may call to memory these things, that we may be a servant of all as she has been. We ask Thee to bless her daughters and husbands and families, that when they become discouraged and feel the need for comfort, that they may turn to Thee that they may receive blessings and comfort from Thee. We ask Thee to bless us as we leave these services that no harm or accident may befall us on the road to the cemet4ry, that we may go in peace and safety, that all might be in accordance with Thy holy mind and will. These blessings and all others that Thou seest we need, we ask them in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
Pallbearers: John Sparks, George Sparks, David Sparks, Fred Homer, Albert Homer and Harold Homer
Song at the Graveside: The Lord's Prayer by Charles Jensen
Dedication of the Grave: Kefford Peek
Our kind Heavenly Father, as we gather here at this spot that has been selected as a resting place for this, our dear sister, we do humbly bow our heads and thank Thee for the blessings we have received at having known had this loved one in our midst for 71 years and for all that she has given us, the fine example and the life she has led. We do dedicate this spot of ground, the casket, clothing and everything pertaining to it, we dedicate this ground as a resting place for Sister Ella Harper that her body may reset here until the morning of the first resurrection and only those things in keeping with the plan of life will be permitted to enter, that nothing of an evil or harmful nature will mar or destroy the resting place of this body.
Father, we pray that Thou will bless those who mourn, especially Ruby and Ruth, their good husbands and their families. Bless them and endow them with Thy hold spirit. Watch over them and protect them that Thy spirit may be with them that they may have peace and harmony, that they may return to their homes blessed and protected on their journey and on their arrival, know that all is well with their homes. Bless all that we may appreciate life here and that we may see the example of good that is given to us by those we love and cherish. These blessings we pronounce in this dedication and we do it humbly in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.