Biography of Patrick Daly Dalton (1891-1939) by daughter Lynnette and son Patrick
Colaborador: lightofday Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
DALTON FAMILY HISTORY
Where do the Dalton family roots go? Ireland--and that makes it a problem to begin with. Irish records are hard to acquire. The excuse is, "They were destroyed in Parish fires during the many civil disturbances in the 19th Century." If the troubles of Ulster in the latter 20th Century are an example, this excuse becomes very believable.
There are several accounts held in the family records. The first account given here is a history written by Lynnette Dalton Verhaaren in June 1949, with as many details as far back as she could find from correspondence with relatives in Ireland.
Starting as far back as I now know on the Dalton line--the McFaddens came to Towney (Kilcar) Ireland as fishermen in the latter part of the 18th Century and followed that profession until about 90 or 100 years ago. There were three brothers--Edward, James (1784-1864) and Michael (1786-1866). Our Grandmother's father was James' son, John (abt. 1840). He and his wife Brigid Cannon (1850-1890 abt) had three children, Michael McFadden (1855- ), Mary (1857-1897), and Annie (1861-1942). Michael emigrated to Scotland at an early age, perhaps about the year 1879 or '80. Nothing else is known of him. Annie (Mrs. Joseph E. "Frank" Gillam) went to the United States about the same time, 1879 or '80. Mary went to the U.S. about the year 1885 or thereabouts.
As I understand it, Mary went right to Colorado where her sister Annie (whom we call Grandma Gillam) was living, married to Frank. Mary was nursemaid and housekeeper for Mrs. Mattie Brownell until she married Michael Dalton (abt. 1853-1898) on the 7th of March 1891, at Montrose, Colorado. At the time of their wedding he was 38 years old and Mary was 27 years old. He became a naturalized citizen 30 October 1894, renouncing all allegiance and fidelity to... Victoria, Queen of Great Britan and Empress of India. They had two children, Patrick Daly Dalton (1892-1939) and Mary Daly Dalton Harmon Von Fintel (1894-1980). Daddy's mother, Mary McFadden Dalton, died in the Spring of 1897 of dropsy. Mrs. Brownel, the lady Mary lived with until her marriage, wrote me that there never was a sweeter, cleaner, nor more religious girl than Mary. She had been to visit Mary in Newmire, Colorado just before Mary died. She remembered both Daddy, Patrick Daly Dalton, and Aunt Mary, who were left orphans after Michael died in the Spring of 1898 in Telluride, Colorado. Jim Harmon took all Michael's property and papers, and adopted Mary. Patrick was sent to Salt Lake City to stay with his mother's sister, Grandma Gillam.
Grandma Gillam's family was large and all had to work. Daddy was sent out to sell newspapers. The sons of Jesse W. Fox were also newsboys. Daddy was adopted, all but legally, by the Fox family. He went to live with them, thereby growing up in the church, instead of living with the Gillams and continuing to be Catholic. He was married in the Salt Lake Temple 12 April 1917 to Ora Victoria Johnson.
Mother was born in Payson, Utah 2 December 1894. Her parents were pioneers and both were born in the Church. Mother's family moved to Colonia Diaz, Mexico when she was quite young. They stayed there until they were driven out two years before the exodus.
Daddy and Mother lived in San Diego for a while after they were married. After he went to France in World War I, Mother went to Tucson to help her sister. Patsy was born there 2 January 1919. She was six months old when Daddy came home. Mother came to Salt Lake to meet him and there they stayed. Lynnette was born the 13th of October 1920. Pat, Jr. was born 11 October 1922, Grant 8 January 1925, and Lynn 28 November 1926.
I think we are a fine five. We played together more than we did with other children. When playing with others, if there was any quarreling, fighting or cheating, the five of us would leave for home--or go inside so they would go home. We controlled the dispositions of many ball games by taking half the team away.
Daddy was a Salt Lake City fireman. He was gassed in several fires as well as in France, leaving his lungs weak and thereby developing into asthma. He was very ill and suffered much pain for many years.
He was transferred from the Salt Lake Veterans Hospital to the one in Tucson. As soon as he found us a house we bought "Big 8" (1928 Buick Sedan) and drove down in January 1935.
I think the first Sunday we were in Arizona we went to Binghampton to Church. There we met many very nice people, among whom were the Jespersons.
Daddy died in 1939 trying the California cure. His heart burst during an asthma attack.
The Summer of 1939 we packed our belongings and moved to Mesa, Arizona, where we could live among members of the Church. Patsy and Lynnette attended Tempe College for almost a year. Ben Hall and Patsy were married 13 October 1940 in Tucson. They were sealed in the Arizona Temple 18 February 1942. Patsy died 16 November 1942.
Lynnette was called on a mission to East Central States in June 1941, but was unable to complete it. She was sent home with secondary anemia. She worked in an office until December 7, 1941, then went to work at Luke Field, and stationed at Luke Field was Werner Verhaaren. They were married in the Arizona Temple 11 November 1943.
Pat joined the Navy October 1942, Grant and Lynn the Air Force (Lynn in November 1944).
Pat and Lela were married in the Arizona Temple, 20 December 1948, Lynn and Davida 7 June 1947. Grant went on a mission to the British Isles in 1947 (he returned today!)
LIFE STORY OF PATRICK DALY DALTON
(by Patrick D. Dalton, Jr.)
Patrick Daly Dalton was born on February 20, 1892 (or 91) in Montrose, Colorado the son of Michael Dalton and Mary McFadden (Fagan). His sister, Mary Daly Dalton, was born November 17, 1893 in Montrose, Colorado and his mother died in giving birth to a third child, who died the same day, on April 22, 1897 in Newmire, Colorado.
After the death of Mary, Michael turned the two children over to the keeping of Mrs. J. F. Harmon (the wife of his business partner, Jim). He left them in Newmire and went to work in the mines.
One year later (May 9, 1898) Harmon wrote Michael. Mary and Patrick were still with him and his wife. He related in a letter to Michael, "Patsy gave Ross boy a licking a few days ago. Ross boy jumped on him. Charley just let Patsy walk his log. He said it would do him good."
Young Patrick went with is father to the coal mine some time in late May or early June of 1898 and tried to help dig out the coal. On June 23 of that same year a friend of his father's came urging Mike to go to Telluride with him, saying that Harmon was stealing everything Mike owned. They were partners in a salon. Mike said he didn't care what Jim Harmon took as long as he took good care of his daughter, and he (Mike) had his son and the coal mine.
The friend said he would not leave the mine until Mike went with him. Finally, he won out. Mike wrapped Pat up in a blanket as it was then raining and put him on a horse in front, and they started out for Telluride. Upon their arrival there was quite a big argument between Mike and Jim Harmon, along with some other men. Finally, they settled down to play a game of poker--winner take all. Harmon served some beer to everyone, but Mike refused to drink his. Harmon kept throwing away Mike's stale, flattened beer, pouring him a new fresh mug. Pat reported that after awhile Harmon got a small bottle and poured something into the beer to make it taste better--supposedly some strong whiskey. However, who knows? Young Patrick was only 6 or 7 at the time and it was amazing that he remembered so well. However, he was still a teenager when he related this story on his first real date with his future wife.
Pat said when Harmon was asked what he was pouring into the beer he replied it was to make the beer taste better. Harmon handed the mug to Mike and demanded that he drink it so they could get on with the game--saying, "You are too glum to play straight." Mike took a few swallows and soon became sick. He left the card table and started outside.
Young Pat tried to go with him, but Harmon restrained him and would not allow him to leave with his father. One of the other men left the table and went outside. Soon there was a shot heard. The man who had left returned on the run and exclaimed "Mickey has killed himself--he shot himself in the head."
The story of a gun shot, self-inflicted wound and suicide was well repeated. It still persisted to be told even as late as September 1971 when Ora Dalton was told the same, or similar, story by Cliff Swainford, in Delta, Colorado who insisted he knew Mike and young Patrick well. However, facts do not support a story of suicide by gun shot. Several Colorado papers carried the news of Mike Dalton's death which was reported to be by "laudanum poisoning."
Doesn't it seem strange that a man would take his own life 10 months after his dear wife had passed away. Even had he been certain his 4 year old daughter was being well taken care of, there was still his young son Patrick, whom he dearly loved--or he would not have had him with him at the mine.
Michael Dalton died 4:00pm, 23rd June 1898. The death was reported as a suicide in the TELLURIDE JOURNAL on that date, in the MONTROSE PRESS, 30 June 1898, and also in the TELLURIDE NEWS 27 or 28 June 1898. A photo was carried of Michael with a large dog and a long rifle.
Mrs. Harmon took care of Pat at first. Mr. Harmon was mean to him--apparently because Pat resented Harmon. Even as a child Pat must have realized the conniving that went on in the card game and the beer drinking. Harmon threatened young Patrick if he ever told anyone about anything he had seen that day. Whenever Patrick heard Harmon coming home, he would run and hide, sometimes under Mrs. Harmon's skirt as she sat in her rocking chair sewing. (The fore-going story was related by Patrick as a young adult.)
Eventually Pat stayed in several homes, including the home of the Ross boy he had fought with. Another home was that of Cliff Swainford, a Mrs. Feritier and others. Later, he ended up in Salt Lake City, Utah with his Aunt Annie Gillam (the sister of his mother) who finally came for him after a year or so. He thought he was about 6-1/2 when his father died and about 7-1/2 when he went to Salt Lake City.
The Gillams were "dirt poor" Irish and one more mouth to feed was more than one too many. Gillam's lived next door to the Jesse W. Fox family. Frank Gillam was bent on sending Patrick to an orphanage. Leonard Grant Fox related:
"Pat was about 7 when he came. My sister Daisy (Ruth Fox) cried because
she didn't want him to go to an orphanage. He was hard to take care of
by the Gillams. The Fox family took him to their farm."
Jesse W. Fox had two homes and two wives. Aunt Polly (Ruth May) Fox in town (Salt Lake City) and Rose Johnson Fox on the farm (at Granger). Thank goodness for Daisy. Patrick was taken by Brother Fox to the farm and there grew up and went to school. During those growing up years Pat's closest friends included Johnse and Leonard Grant Fox. Pat's birthday was the 20th of February and Leonard Grant's was the 25th. They celebrated together on Washington's birthday.
Aunt Polly (Ruth May Fox) took pity on Pat and shared Grant's clothes with him--started him in school and saw that he had regular weekly baths and often tucked him in bed with Grant.
As related by L. Grant Fox (in 1979), "During those years Pat and I walked home from Murray one night to the Fox farm. We had been careless about smoking and I threw mine away and he said, 'If you are going to quit, so am I' and threw his in the Jordan River."
It wasn't until Patrick was 11 years old before Anne and Frank Gillam finally gave consent for Patrick to remain at the Fox farm. The Gillams were Catholic and it was hard for them to turn over their nephew to a Mormon family--better the Nun's orphanage. But Daisy made too much fuss, so finally they gave in.
There are some good old Irish anecdotes told about Uncle Frank. He was the typical imbibing Irishman and often found his way home with difficulty and "several sheets in the wind." One night when Frank arrived home pie-eyed as a pickled herring, Aunt Annie met him at the back door where he was attempting to smuggle himself into the house and bed without notice. With her broom, Aunt Annie began to work him over like the Spring cleaning of the parlor rug. Frank was taking about all he could and finally, sobering up somewhat, called out, "Annie, Annie, sure an if ye stop beatin' me, 'tis promising ya that I am that hereafter it's two days a year only that I'll be getting drunk.....".
Annie paused and inquired, "Sure now, an' what two days will that be?"
And Frank answered, "Christmas and Saturdays."
Well, she managed to reform him a litter better than that, at least for awhile. After some time, being stone sober and in the Spring of the year, Frank approached Annie and petitioned.
"Sure now, Annie, if ye'd be giving me 4 bits, 'tis to the corner store I'll be going to get a kite for the kiddies."
"How nice," she thought, "'tis a kite he'll be flying with the brians [bairns?]" and she gave him the cash. He left but didn't return and she became very concerned. Donning her shawl and heading for town--sure enough, there she found him on the corner by the Pub--high as a kite!
At the Fox farm Pat was more of an intruder than a family member as he had been with the town family. Aunt Polly, the town wife, was older, more sedate--a very talented and genteel lady who, along with Daisy, took much pity on young Patrick. She was the General President of the YWMIA. Her daughter, Daisy, and young Grant were Patrick's closest friends in town.
The country wife, Rose Johnson Fox, was younger. She was a country girl and had been somewhat of a tomboy in her youth. She first attracted the attention of Jesse W. by kicking off his hat.
Rose was the daughter of Joseph E. Johnson (Brother of B. F. Johnson) and she was a cousin to Heber Johnson. Her father was very selective and restrictive about the maturation, courting and marriage of his progeny. Joseph E. was almost as determined his [B. F. Johnson's--kdw] son William and daughter Rose WOULD NOT marry as William and Rose were they would. Rose, becoming rebellious, declared "If you refuse to allow us to marry, I'll marry the first married man who's hat I can kick off." Shortly after that she was at Uncle Benji's (B. F. Johnson's) who was in the yard discussing something important with J. W. Fox. Rose walked up to Jesse W., kicked off his hat, and went right into the house. Later she married him. She was the Mother of Maude (who married Avard Fairbanks), Johnse and Angus (good friends of Dad's).
At this point it should be mentioned that when Rose was left a widow, after Jesse W. died, she did finally marry Uncle Will (who was left a widower). Will and Rose lived out their lives together in happiness.
Pat was an outside in this new Fox family. Rose's family was large and there wasn't an extra room in the house. Pat was bedded in the bunk house with the hired hands and some other relatives. He was fed with the family and treated otherwise as one of them. At first he ended up doing whatever chores the Fox boys did not want to do. In the bunk house Pat became close friends with Charlie Johnson (Rose's brother). Being shy and somewhat different, Pat did not gather with the rest of the family at evening story time (Family Home Evening), held most every night because there wasn't radio, television and other contraptions in those days to break apart the family. Pat also because friendly with another older man only remembered as "Teddy." Teddy wasn't too easy to get close to. He was a loner. This is probably why Pat was drawn to him. They were both more or less loners. Teddy helped Pat with much of his homework for school. They mutually gained each other's confidence. As they came closer, Teddy became a surrogate Father. He helped Pat to tolerate and understand the wrongs of others, especially older people, and more especially, older men. Even yet Pat retained a burning resentment of Jim Harmon, but with the help and understanding of Charlie Johnson and Teddy, Pat learned to forget that hurt. He remembered Harmon, but his hate had been so consuming he had forgotten that he even had a sister.
It was during these years at the Fox farm, when he was a teenager, that he learned about Mary and they met. Mary made a trip from Colorado to Salt Lake City before she was married to Gus Von Fintel. Mary was 16, going on 17, when she and Gus married and was about 15 or 16 when she and Pat met in Salt Lake City. Mary was raised a Protestant by the Harmons.
Pat hadn't really been taught the gospel. Growing up around the older men, he had been overlooked and he did not really understand the "true principles of the Gospel." Nevertheless, when he was 14 years old, Jessie W. Fox called him in and said, "Pat, you have been with us long enough now. I think it is time for you to be baptized." So he was.
He began to attend Priesthood meetings, Sunday School and Church regularly. He went with the other boys in the family. Consequently, he began to become more a part of the family. Shortly after his baptism he received the Aaronic Priesthood and was made the secretary of the Jordan Ward Sunday School. What a thrill that was to him.
Slowly, but surely, he began to emerge from his shell. However, even with all this improvement he was still somewhat socially mal-adjusted. He never learned to dance, and for growing up in a large Mormon family that was almost unheard of. Yet, on the other hand, he was more active in school, becoming, by popular election, the president of his class. With the help of Aunt Polly he started older and wiser than most of the schoolmates. He was not too big during these years. His height came later as he grew to 6 feet at maturity. But during those teen years he was somewhat of a runt, which made him fit in with the younger children at school very well.
By his later teen years he graduated from Jordan School in the Granite School District at an age when most young people would be in High School. One of the regrets that Pat had to his death was what he felt was his "lack of education." He always wanted to make sure that his own children would have the best possible education. It was regretful that he didn't live to see all three of his sons complete college educations and earn advanced degrees.
During the Summer prior to Pat's last year of school, he was sent by Brother Fox to Nevada where he worked in the Fox's "Rosemary" mine. This was an exciting experience for Pat. It was hard, strenuous work with much muscle building. He enjoyed it and was thankful for the opportunity, but when he returned in the Fall his Sunday School job as secretary had been assigned to another--and a girl at that. Pat was offered the opportunity to serve as her assistant. Assistant to a girl--no way! He quit the Sunday School job with much remorse. It is really too bad that happened. Things later in his life might have been much different had he been able to retain that simple job that had been keeping him active. Without that responsibility, he was easy prey to slipping backwards, more so because he'd never had the strength of a full family life in the Church.
Pat's last year of school was one of study, work, and executive experience as class president. What a day--that day of graduation. School was over and behind him. Now he was a man. He could be on his own. Out there was the whole wide world. He would leave the farm.
Pat and Johnse decided to move into Salt Lake City. They found a room at the home of Brother and Sister Mathius Cowley, and took jobs clerking in stores. This was a time of becoming a part of the big, wide world and renewing old friendships. It was a long, fun Summer for they were stretching their wings and feeling their oats.
One night in October, Johnse came home and told Pat he'd just met a good looking cousin, granddaughter of B. R. Johnson, named Ora and had invited her to the upcoming Halloween party out at the Fox farm. Ora was playing the game of being hard to get, but her Grandmother (her Mother's Mother), with whom she was staying, insisted she go. So it was all set. Pat was anxious to meet this living doll. Johnse picked Ora up after work and they caught the street car for Murray. They sat down a few seats in front of where Pat was already located. Yes, Johnse was right. She was beautiful, though sort of shy and withdrawn. It was apparent that she was there because she was told to be. She was not going all out to be friendly. As Johnse talked to her, she turned and took a long look at Pat. His heart skipped a beat. As he caught her eye, he was somewhat dumbfounded by the expression on her face. Was she impressed? How did she feel? What was Johnse telling her?
When the trolley car reached the end of the line in Murray, they were met by Angus Fox with a buggy to take them to the farm. Johnse had made all the arrangements. All his family was waiting and anxious to meet this good looking cousin of theirs. They treated her as an extra special honored guest. But poor Pat. All night he constantly was endeavoring to establish a firmer acquaintance with Ora. But she seemed to be purposely avoiding him. That only fired him up more. He was going to succeed in winning this girl's attention.
That night, after the party, Pat and Johnse made their plans. They would tell Ora that Johnse had to go back early--and he would leave after making arrangements for Pat to see her home. The next afternoon the plan was executed. Johnse found Ora and excitedly informed her of his sudden necessary departure to catch the next trolley back to town. He could not wait for her, and Pat would take her home. Now the way was finally open for Pat and Ora to really get acquainted. Ora was so shy, timid and quiet. She seemed very reluctant to go--but did. She wasn't very talkative. On the way back to town, Pat did everything he could think of to get her to talk. Her response to his small talk was stifled, brief and almost non-existent. He wanted so much to become her friend. She was not very interested. The ride back to Salt Lake City seemed extra long. Finally, they reached Ora's home. She made a mad dash for the door. Hardly saying "goodnight" and "thank you," she was gone. Gone.....but Pat could not forget her.
Every night when he got off work he would rush to her rooming house and watch for her to come home. She always seemed to be in such a hurry and as though making a dash for safety into the house. Just the glimpse of her made him feel good. Yes, indeed, she was beautiful!
One night one of the men at the rooming house came to him and asked, "Young man, every night I see you standing here. What do you want?"
"I'm hoping to see Miss Johnson," Pat replied. "I was introduced to her a few weeks ago and I keep hoping she'll see me and speak."
"Well, for heaven's sake, why don't you go tell her you're here. I'll go for you," he said, and turned and went back in the house.
Pat was very nervous and anxious. He didn't know whether to stand or run. Soon the man returned.
"She can't come out," he said. "Why don't you go in there yourself?"
Go in? Pat was somewhat shy himself. He'd never felt this way about anyone before. Did he have enough fortitude to go in? No. not tonight. Another time!
The evening watch continued. The words of the older roomer kept ringing in the ears of his memory. He began to acquire strength. A few nights after the first meeting with the older man Pat got some fresh fruit and decided to take it as a gift to Ora and her Grandmother. Pat's courage reached a maximum point. He slowly inched into the rooming house. Slowly he worked his way to Ora's apartment. He raised his hand to knock, and then withdrew it. Maybe she would still reject him. Ah, hell, he might as well find out. He did so much want to become friends with her. He raised his hand again and with his knuckles to the door...knocked.
Well, that was that. He'd done it. But now he felt like running. Why had he knocked? She wasn't going to ask him in. After all, what was he..... a nobody. She was a granddaughter of B. F. Johnson and she was beautiful. Should he turn and run? It is amazing how much goes through the mind in such a short time, but it seemed like an eternity.
Then the door opened. There she was. The lovely Ora Johnson. He was embarrassed. He could feel himself turning red. He shifted his weight from one foot to the other.
"I thought you might like some fresh fruit, for you and your Grandmother," he stammered. Ora looked at him. Would she reject him? Would she invite him in?
"Come in" she said. Yes, yes, she did. She actually invited him in. The fruit was from the store where he worked as a fruit delivery man.
Her grandmother, Mrs. Senior, was seated in the room. "Come in young man, come in." She was so pleasant and friendly. Right away she started a conversation. She encouraged Pat to talk. She asked questions. He told her about being raised with the Fox boys. Sister Senior agreed, "The sons of Jesse W. Fox are all fine boys."
That was Pat's chance. "Grant Fox and I are going to Saltaire next Saturday. Grant will be going with his girlfriend, Olive Harlin. I sure would be pleased if Ora could go with me. I would take good care of her. And we'll have a good time."
"Why that sounds like a wonderful opportunity for you, Ora." Sister Senior said. "I think it will be fine for you to go with this nice young man."
Pat was thrilled. Sister Senior liked him. She trusted him, and Ora would be going with him. That was the beginning of a long-lasting friendship between Pat and Ora and Grant and Olive. Ora and Olive hit it off well. They spent a lot of time together. Eventually, Pat and Ora spent time together by themselves. Pat was falling in love. He was sure that Ora was becoming fond of him. He told her his life story. This is always a sign of true love, when the boy tells the girl his life story. It was a wonderful time. Young love--few cares and every tomorrow had a bright shining sunrise.
Then one day Ora's brother suddenly arrived from Arizona and before Pat knew it Ora was on her way back to Mesa, Arizona where her parents lived. But they would keep in touch. They would write. This separation would either destroy or cement their blossoming love.
During the Summer of 1915 Pat had enlisted in the Utah National Guard, along with Johnse Fox and Rufus Johnson. Shortly after the time that Ora went home to Mesa, the Utah National Guard was activated and dispatched to the Arizona-Mexican border as part of General John J. Pershing's forces to maintain peace and protect Americans from the raidings of Poncho Villa.
Pat was a teamster in the Medical Supply Corps. Poncho Villa kept the troops busy. He operated mostly out of Chihuahua, Mexico and Columbia, New Mexico. There was not much activity in Arizona and Sonora. However, the troops were kept busy, living in tents and moving back and forth along the border. Actually, the entire exercise was a training ground for allied troops later in France during World War I.
Occasionally, the troops were allowed to visit Tucson. In the Fall of 1916 the Medical Supply group would make such a trip. Pat wrote to Ora and informed her of the pending visit. He inquired as to the possibility of Ora coming to Tucson and meeting him. Ora wrote back.. she would be coming, but her father was sending her older sister, Cassie, with her. Well, that was all right, as long as Ora could make the trip.
Cassie wasn't too bad. She was friendly enough, certainly the antithesis of her younger sister. Where Ora had been shy and retiring, Cassie was bold, forward and in the driver's seat. She was fun, but a drag where Ora was concerned.
The day was spent in sightseeing with a Mexican dinner in a quaint little restaurant that evening. Finally, later that evening, Pat had an opportunity to spend some time alone with Ora. How nice it was to once again talk with her and enjoy her company.
The next day Brother Johnson arrived to take his daughters home. He issued an invitation to the entire group to come to Mesa for Thanksgiving. Pat and his friends conditionally accepted. Now this would take some real Army maneuvering. The trip to Tucson had been more or less on Army business--to pick up medical supplies. Who could blame a soldier for taking some off-duty time for recreation. But going to Mesa.....that would require leave time.
The group was stationed at Nogales. That was only 60 miles from Tucson. But Mesa was an additional 120 miles. It would take much longer to get there and back. It would require a week, from the Tuesday before Thanksgiving to the Tuesday following. The Sergeant... he could arrange it. First, invite him to come along. Then the Company Clerk. Invite him also. And so the preparations were under way. As the middle of November approached, the leave was granted. Only 15 men were involved. Could the Johnsons handle such a group?
Ora wrote back and said "yes." Everything was set.
The Johnsons were living in an old school house. Their former home had burned down. This little school house had several rooms. There was room for everyone. And what a time everyone had. Ora's sister, Cassie, sort of took over. With 15 men she was in high spirits.
Pat managed to get alone with Brother and Sister Johnson. They were very friendly. He could tell at once they really liked him. He told Brother Johnson of his love for his daughter and requested his permission to marry her. There, he'd done it. He had pleaded his case. Now he held his breath. Would he be given the bum's rush back to the Guard? Or would he be laughed at? Or could it possibly be he'd be accepted as a son-in-law? Once again it seemed like an eternity. Pat recalled standing in front of Ora's door the first time he visited at her Grandmother's. All kinds of thoughts were rushing through his mind. As he sat there anxious, he heard Brother Johnson say, "I would be overjoyed to welcome you into my family." And then, "Mother, our Ora and this fine young man will be married." Sister Johnson was as happy as if she was to be the bride.
Pat couldn't believe it had actually happened. He had courted the lovely Ora, cousin of Johnse. He had won her and had received her father's approval. What a Thanksgiving that was. He would always remember it....November 1916.
Early in 1917 the Utah Guard was deactivated and by March all the boys were home. Pat was back in Salt Lake City and Ora was still in Mesa. Ora's Mother had come to Utah for the funeral of her Mother. Sister Senior, who had suddenly passed away. Half of a train round trip tick was less than a one way ticket. Pat paid for half of the round trip ticket for Ora to come to Salt Lake City and the other half was purchased by Heber Johnson as the return portion for Ora's Mother to return to Mesa, Arizona.
On the 6th of April 1917 the United States declared war on Germany and her allies. It was certain now that the Utah National Guard would again be activated. After all, the duty on the Mexican border was really a training exercise. The boys had only been home for such a short time. The country was in a war fever. "Save the world for Democracy!" was the cry. Pat was sure he didn't have much time left. It was now imperative that the wedding take place. Preparations proceeded at a stepped up pace and arrangements were made.
On the 12th of April 1917 Pat and Ora went to the Salt Lake Temple where they were sealed together for time and all eternity. Even though the marriage certificate does not show it, due to the signing being done prior to the ceremony, the actual sealing was done by Patriarch Hyrum G. Smith. This was the same man who gave Patrick his Patriarchal Blessing on 20 June 1917. The name on the marriage certificate is Alvin Smith, but that is incorrect.
After the wedding Pat and Ora spent their honeymoon in Price, Utah at the home of Ora's older sister Klea Ballinger and husband. It was a joyful, pleasant time they had together there. They knew it would not be for long. It was only a matter of time before Pat would be called up to return to military service. The letter came, directing him to report for duty with the Utah Guard. In a way it was a relief. He was assigned to go to San Diego, California for activation and training. In August 1917 Pat shipped out for duty in San Diego. Ora remained in Salt Lake City, Utah. She moved into the home of Brother and Sister Mathius Cowley, into the same room that Pat had previously occupied before he and Ora married.
Ten weeks later, in October, Pat was able to send for Ora. She joined him in San Diego. Pat was working in the 347th Field Hospital which was located in Balboa Park. He and some of his associates had been fortunate in locating apartments in a building close to the park.
The young couple, along with their many friends, new and old (from the Utah group), including both Johnson and Fox relatives, had many enjoyable times and associations. Ora's brother, Harland, was in San Diego in the U. S. Navy. Pat and Ora and Harland had many good times together. By late Spring 1918 Pat's unit was ready for overseas duty and they shipped out. Soon after Ora moved to Tucson, Arizona to stay with her sister Vivia and Ernest Farr.
Pat's outfit traveled overland to New York and from there embarked by troup transport for France. His service included the Muese-Argonne Forest engagement, at which time he was mildly gassed in the trenches in the process of retrieving wounded troops. The gassing was not considered serious and he apparently showed no ill effects then and recovered satisfactorily. However, damage was sustained and it would tell on him later in life.
Pat was the Supply Non-Com at a Staff Sergeant rating in the 347th Field Hospital. One of his assignments was the preparation of dead bodies for military burial. He related the story of how, with the assistance of a couple of negros [sic], he had to prepare a very large dead man for internment. The dead man had gigantic, large feet -- the largest Pat had ever seen. Pat's own feet were rather small for a man of his height -- 6 feet. this was because as a young lad his shoes were always hand-me-downs from someone else (the results of being an orphan). He was always so glad to have a pair of shoes, he took extremely good care of them and made them last as long as possible. Consequently, his feet never grew normally during those growing years. He ended up at manhood with size 7 shoe.
The dead soldier had to be fully dressed in military uniform all the way down to size 15 feet. The military uniform of that period was an awkward thing to put on another person. The trousers were of the knicker-type and wrap-around leggens were work from the ankle to the knees. They finally got the body fully clothed but still no shoes. So, Patrick said to his two assistants, "Find the biggest pair you can, and we'll cut his foot down to size." The two darkies [sic] weren't to happy about that, but they had no other choice. So the process was begun and finally the ordeal was over. But, when they were through, the work had caused the knees to be elevated. Well, he'd have to be flattened to fit the coffin. Turning to the two black assistants Pat said, "Push his knees down ....." and they did. As a consequence of the time it had taken to prepare this body, slight rigor mortis had begun to set in, and the muscles in the hips were tight. As the knees were pushed down, the torso was caused to raise in an upright sitting position. Air in the lungs escaped past the vocal cords causing a moanful, penetrating "ooooooh!"
The two darkies [sic] opened their eyes the size of saucers -- turning, they took off like streaks of lightening. One of them missed the tent door, creating a new one as he departed. Patrick ended the tale by saying as far as he knew, the two are still running to this day.
Another story often told by Pat concerning the burial detail was about a time when there was a short break in activities and a group of "dough-boys" set down to a card game. Card games were one of the most common relaxing ways utilized by the troops during the short breaks they occasionally had. One of the participants suddenly provided a couple of bottles of French wine which he had acquired some where along the line--"by conscription" the solider called it. The wine was warm and one imbiber said "How great this would be if we could cool it."
Another soldier, on the burial detail, spoke up and said, "I can get ice." He left the group and returned with ice. That was great! They put the ice right into the drink. Soon the ice melted and the drink became warm again. The ice-procurer said "I'll get more" and he again left the game.
The other participants said to each other, "Where is he getting the ice?" One of them suggested they follow and find out. So they did. The group slowly and stealthly followed the soldier going for ice. He headed for the tent that had the bodies waiting for burial preparation. After the dispatched soldier entered the tent, the group (in a secretive manner) sneaked up to the tent flap. Pulling back the flap slowly they were able to observe his movements in the tent. The "ice man" went to a large container holding the deceased bodies, packed in ice, and there by "loan" was borrowing ice for the wine. That was the end of the drinking party!!
On the 11th hour of the 11th day of November 1918 the war came to an end. Germany ceased hostilities and surrendered. Everyone thought they would go home soon--but not so. There were many mopping up operations, and the American troops apparently had the required assets to provide the work.
Pat's first child (Mary Ellen) was born 2 January 1919 in Tucson, Arizona while he was yet in France. He was stationed at Mars-la-tour at that time. His foster brother and long time friend, L. Grant Fox, was the regimental clerk at Regiment Headquarters. Grant Fox related that "It was a thrill for me to find Pat in Mars-la-tour". (The following from Grant Fox's Journal.....)
"January 28, 1919. Tuesday. Received a letter from Pat telling me that
he had received a cablegram from home stating that a daughter had been
born to him.
"I have written to him to see if he could 'sleep me' and 'eat me', and
if so I would call on him the latter part of February."
Arrangements were made. Pat was happy with the chance of a reunion with his dear foster brother, Grant. Grant arrived at Mars-la-tour on 20 February 1919. Pat met him at about 4:00 p.m. It was a happy meeting. Pat had a cot for Grant and a bed made up with sheets. It was a real privilege for Grant to be sleeping between sheets. The regular troops had not been so fortunate. As Supply Sergeant in the Field Hospital, sheets were somewhat more available. Being expert as a Supply Sergeant, Pat was easily able to requisition the necessary sheets and other supplies.
Many other Utah men were in the same area and met with Pat and Grant. Among them were: Besso Picco, Joe Williams, Matthew F. Noall, Charles E. Crosby, Roy N. Dundas and others.
Among the activities of the friends were hikes and walks out over the former battlegrounds. They visited a former German aviation field and climbed up the observation tower, about 60 feet high. Grant Fox recorded February 22, 1919:
"Three years ago today Pat and Ora, and Olive and I were entertained by
Fera and Anna (Fox) for our birthdays, at 124 North State St."
Fera Fox was President of the old L.D.S. Business College.
They also visited old gun emplacements and ammunition dumps. They saw many monuments erected by the Germans for soldiers of 1870.
By mid-Summer 1919 Pat was back home in Salt Lake City and honorably discharged from the U. S. Army. A World War I veteran with a wife and infant daughter and no work. That Fall he went to work picking fruit and working at whatever job he could acquire. He was a door to door shoe salesman. He took many and various jobs. [including census enumerator for the 1920 Federal census--kdw] Finally, by 1922, he became a member of the Utah State Fireman's Association and was employed by the Salt Lake City Fire Department.
The foregoing has been gleaned from the stories and reports of other individuals plus the recollections of my own conversations with my Father. (Patrick D. Dalton, Jr. -- May 1981)
ABOUT MY DA --
(by Lynnette Dalton Verhaaren)
I call him that now because when I was young and he was with us I did not know that Irish term of endearment for a favorite parent -- and he was Irish.
Others like Brother Grant, who is a tremendous collector of historical (ancient and recent) stories, and Leonard Grant Fox who was as close to a brother as my Da had, may be able to go into more detail about the period of time before I can draw on MY memory. L. Grant Fox knew my Da from when he was six and went to his mother's sister in Salt Lake City after the murder of his father. L. G. Fox was in WW I in France with my Da and has a large collection of tales of their adventures.
He was born in Colorado 20 Feb 189_. His father was Michael Dalton and mother Mary McFadden (Fagan). He let a letter from Harmon (the people who adopted his little sister) affect him sorely all his life, that he was born before his parents were wed. I was able to correspond with the lady with whom Mary lived in Colorado and her letter to me is somewhere in the family history book given to my Da and mother from Ruth May Fox as a wedding present. The letter from the lady in Colorado states firmly that no finer, nor purer young lady had she ever met and absolutely not--she did not have a bairn before Mickey Dalton claimed her hand. Harmon had found in Michael and Mary's papers a letter Mary had written to her sister, with the wrong year in the date, lamenting the death of their mother "With no one there to close the dear eyes" also stating, "I was married in the Catholic
church and have a son." My understanding is that if it were the other way. . . "I had a child and was married in the church" it is most unlikely that the Catholics would allow a church wedding. Anyway, my letter from Colorado came too late to put the mind of my Da at rest. He died the year I graduated from high school, 1939.
[Note: Montrose County, Colorado records indicate that they were not married in the Catholic church, but were married by W. R. Agard, Justice of the Peace of Montrose County, 7 March 1891, after Patrick was born.]
But let's go back a ways....... I'm told he and my sister selected my name--the Frances I never use he wanted because he had come home from France after some very harrowing experiences like being gassed in the trenches, rain, mud....lonely and cold. One experience he used to enjoy telling was when in the Medical Corps he and a black man were assigned the unpleasant detail of lining up on slabs the bodies of the soldiers who had died. One soldier's knees were very bent. In pressing them down to straighten them it forced the body into a sitting position. The air still in the body came out of the mouth in a groan that sent the assistant running and my Da would laugh and add, "I bet he is still running."
I'm told he was dancing my sister on his knee when she pointed out the window to a bird. My Da told her it was a linnet. She repeated "linnet--linnet--lynnette. My Da said, "That sounds like a good name for our girl" and that's been it.
The Salt Lake City directories in the LDS Genealogical Library for the years starting 1920 list the following addresses for us and occupations for my Da:
1919 no PDD listed
1920 no book in the library, but I know we lived at 172 Beryl Ave.
1921 172 Beryl Ave.
1922 108 Third Avenue (gone)
1923 263 Fifth Avenue (now apartments)
1924 289 N. West Temple (gone)
1925 293 N. Main St.
1926 246 Almond Street (gone)
1927 440 Van Ness
1928 " " "
1929-30 361 East 8th South (gone)
1931 868 South 5th East (gone)
1932 1582 South 6th East
(here until the time we moved to Arizona)
I have photos of most of the above and somewhere I have the Arizona addresses.
I do not know the real reason we moved so often. I've been told it was because my Da was a fireman and those days a fireman was home one day and gone two. Mother wanted us to be as close as possible to his assigned station. I'm more inclined to believe our moves were to make more space as the family increased one more every other year.
My Da was really strong until he became ill. He could lift all five of us and walk around the room. He was a tease too. It was from him that we learned to laugh when someone teased us and he always said people do not tease people they do not like. It really made it easier to be teased.
One of my first big disappointments was when I was eight and it was during one of the two days gone that I was scheduled to go to the Tabernacle in downtown Salt Lake City to be baptized and he couldn't even be there. He and I were real pals. As a fireman he was allowed into theaters to "inspect" and he'd take me with him... it seemed often. He would leave me to see the movie while he did his inspecting until he could join me. I remember most vividly the first "talkie" I saw. It was Jack Okie in "Hit the Deck". We would stay and watch the live stage show that followed and then go home and together practice the dance steps. We were quite good at a lot of them. My Da did a tremendous soft shoe.
He struggled valiantly to stay at work with the fire department for ten years to provide a pension, although he was quite ill. After being gassed again in a bad fire at Wolfes Department Store in Salt Lake City, he gave up and was sent to the hospital where it took ten years for him to suffer to death.
In going through some papers later, Davida and I found among some letters one that my Da had written regarding how sad he was to have failed so. His dream was to have his sons get the formal education he had not received. He finished through the sixth grade but by hard work and self direction he became quite knowledgable. I know he knows his sons all have college degrees -- two of them with doctorate degrees.
When I am in Salt Lake City I sometimes enjoy driving around our old neighborhoods, especially where my well is on the corner of Eighth South and Fifth East. He and I used to roller skate around that block, stopping to get a drink at then what was only a horse trough with water running that never stopped. Now a lovely park has been built on my corner. Driving around my old neighborhoods I borrow memories and feelings from the past and sometimes I can imagine I feel the presence of my Da.
I do know that someday we will be together again.
(Frances) Lynnette Dalton Verhaaren