Wednesday, January 8, 2014

LITTLE GRANDMA'S STORY

Little Grandma
MAREN KIRSTINE SORENSEN
18 November 1834---4 October 1923
By Eugene Halverson
House that Peter Boel gave to Grandma Halverson
Aunt Mary with Grandma Halverson 
Eighty years ago I spent three long lonely summers with Grandma until school began in September.  I traded my mountain for a farm in Mapleton.  No one told me why I had to go and I was angry and hurt.  When I came home a new baby was being tended, first Paul and then Vivian. 
Grandma did need help and she kept me busy.  I was happy when I was helping and I learned many things.  I fed the chickens, pigs and the cows.  I liked to watch Uncle Joe milk the cows.  I can still see him sitting on this one-legged stool and begin milking them.  The cats were all sitting in a row waiting for a squirt.  Joe was good he would hit them right in the mouth.  They would lick themselves clean and wait for more.  When I tried I missed the whole cat. 
Little Grandma's room behind Donna, Grandma and 2 Aunt Marys
Grandma would pour the milk into the bowl of the separator and I would turn the handle and watch the milk go one way and the cream the other.   Later I paddled the cream into butter and put them in molds.  Grandma would wrap them in “Halverson Wraps” to sell them.  Oh, how I loved the buttermilk.
I was always careful to stay out of Grandma’s way but the house seemed quite mysterious to me.  There were many places that I was not allowed to go.  I peeked into her bedroom easy enough.  She let me look at some of her keep-sakes in the most beautiful dresser I had ever seen.  I just about asked her what that pot in the corner was but when I smelled it I knew.

Joe, barn and cows
The Parlor was the secret place and off limits but at times she let me look.  It must have been a room of memories.  She cleaned it but never used it.  I can still remember horse-hair chairs, spinning-wheels, a peddle sewing machine, an organ and many other treasures.  They were just thrown away by her children. 

The grain would ripen in July and I would get this big scythe and cradle out and cut and tie them together and then stand them up.  Then a threshing machine and crew would come.  Wheat came out one side and straw out the other.  The wheat would go into a big open bin in back of the granary. 

left -Mary Halverson Peterson
My fishing Buddy
The granary was the family’s outdoor storage place.  The east wall had three wooden hand-plane hanging one above the other.  One was at least 36 inches long.  I was told these Grandpa Halverson’s.  G Grandpa Boel had a great assortment of black-smithing tools.  One of them was a bellows made from a brown and white milk-cow.  He made and used it to make hotter fire I used it blow grain around.  They were treasures and wasting away.  I asked Dad about taking one of Grandpa’s wood plane and an antique gun.  Most of that went to waste.
 I walked behind the hay-cutter to help save the poor baby pheasants when the mother was killed.  The hay was raked, dried and loaded on a horse pulled wagon.  At the barn giant forks would drop and grab the hay, lift it up, take it inside and drop it. 


I did learn a little bit about farming and I got to know our double-cousins, the Petersons as well as the Halversons.  One day both families were picnicking in Hobble Creek Canyon.  Aunt Mary Peterson noticed me of by myself looking lost.  Come on she said lets go fish.  A willow, a string a safety pin and my grass-hopper and off we went.  We didn’t catch any fish but I found an aunt that I’ll always love.  I did get to know both families and learned to love them.    
Anne Marie Pousdatter
mother of Peter & Christiana Petersen
she said we go to America now
The wheat would go into a big bin in the granary.  I spent a lot of time in there with all of Grandpa Halverson’s carpentry tools Great Grandfather Boel’s blacksmithing tool.  They were treasures and wasting away.  I asked Dad about taking one of Grandpa’s wood plane and an antique gun.  Most of that went to waste.
I got to see them bring in a horse-pulled hay-cutter.  So I would walk behind to help save the poor baby pheasants.  Sometimes if they were lucky they just got separated from the mother but not always. The hay was left to dry, raked in piles, and dried again and hand loaded on a horse pulled wagon.  At the barn giant forks would drop and grab the hay, lift it up, take it inside and drop it.  

I did learn a little bit about farming and I got to know our double-cousins, the Petersons as well as the Halversons.  One day both families were picnicking in Hobble Creek Canyon.  Aunt Mary Peterson noticed me of by myself looking lost.  Come on she said lets go fish.  A willow, a string a safety pin and my grass-hopper and off we went.  We didn’t catch any fish but I found an aunt that I’ll always love.  I did get to know both families and learned to love them.   

Little Grandma's family
Chris, Jens, Pierre, Peter
Aunt Mary, Elsine, Little Grandma
  The hay was raked, dried and loaded on a horse pulled wagon and taken to the barn.  Where these giant forks would drop and grab the hay and drop it in the barn.  Anyway there were very few of us who got to know the family. 
Little Grandma’s Room
Well, the last room was where Uncle Joe slept and it was still called Little Grandma’s room and this is what I learned.

GREAT GRANDMA BOEL (Little Grandma)
My cousin Erma Ashby Drummond tells this story
 "My memory of her is so vivid in my mind.  She lived in a lean-to room tacked onto the back of the old brick house at Mapleton.  Grandma Halverson always warned us not to bother her as she was old and sick.  We went to Utah in the summer time when we were small.  I believe Mom went home to help grandma can peaches as she was allergic to peach fuzz.  Anyway I was about 4-1/2 or 5 and went back and knocked on her door.  She had a cozy room with a wood range, table and bed.  I thought she was enchanting and not sick or old.  She was sweet and loving and made me a necklace.  And in all the never mind how many years since then, no piece of jewelry has ever meant so much.  In those olden days they made ribbon candy with colorful designs on them.  She put a string through one loop and tied it around my neck.  I was so proud I wouldn't eat it." 
Myrtle H. Ashby with son, Arnold
Mary Peterson Halverson, Little Grandma
Coffee   Nothing could separate the Danes from their beloved coffee.  I can remember great Grandpa Boel visiting once with other Boel people.  Grandma had cups with deep saucers, almost like a small bowl.  Sugar cubes were on the table along with a small knife.  They cut the cubes in half and then half again.  The coffee in the cups were poured into the saucers to cool.  A piece of sugar cube was held between the teeth and the coffee was sipped threw it.  When we were little Grandma made us “Cambric Tea” or Sassafras tea.  Cambric tea was hot water with a little cream and sugar in it.  We thought it was wonderful with one of her cream cookies. 
Great Grandma was down to her last front tooth but it held the cube sugar very well.  Some called her “Lump Sugar Grandma”.  She was a feisty old lady so everyone had to tease her. 
Jens & Mary Peterson home
Uncle Joe used to talk about her to me.  He always teased her, he said - because she couldn't say "ashes" - She called them "asses" and would ask Joe to come take the "asses|" out of her stove.  I don't know if she spoke English as I can't ever recall seeing her but once.

AUNT MARY HALVERSON BOWEN, said, “I can't tell you much more about Lump Sugar Grandma, as she was called by everyone in the community.  She did have a very sad and unhappy life but she was happy with who she was and the love she felt from those about her.  She was indeed a great little lady.  Everyone loved her, except the man she loved, Christian P. Bole.  Aunt Myrtle said she was also called "Molly". 
Her spinning wheel was put in the loft of the new garage that was built for the Model T Ford, after Raymond died, don't remember what happened to it.  The organ was put in the new granary.  All the screws were taken out and it was destroyed.  I also remember that after Andrew was dead, our neighbor, Dell Roundy took a lot out of the granary, talked Joe out of a lot of tools and stuff.  My Mother, Mary was very upset about it. 
Pierre & Molly Boel home and farm
Dad told me about the rope hanging from the rafters above the bed but when I looked it was gone.  That was how she got out of bed without falling.     
She wore her wooden shoes and they were quite pretty and fancy.  She liked them because it made her feet look small and dainty because they were short.  Aunt Mary Halverson Bowen said she very seldom let anyone see her feet.  Her toes stuck straight up.  Her shoes were made to bend the toes up.  It was a Danish custom to cramp and bend a woman’s foot.  I wanted to see them but Aunt Mary said she had burned them. “No”, she said, “I was there when she put them in her little stove”.
JOE BOEL’S STORY
Cutting and stacking hay
Grandfather picked up his mother and five kids, and the housekeeper and came to Utah then two years later, grandmother (Maren Kirstine Sorensdatter Boel) was able to sell this piece of property, so she picked up the three kids and traveled to Utah.  Grandfather (Boel) was living in Pleasant Grove with the housekeeper and in the meantime had joined the church.  Grandfather and the housekeeper, Anna Johanna Jensen, went to the Salt Lake endowment house and they were sealed for all time and eternity in about 1879.  So when grandmother showed up with the other three kids, Aunt Hanna as we called her, said to grandmother “well you have to be the second wife, because I’m the first wife”.  (and you will find a history of this in Mapleton, that’s where they eventually lived,  on page 81, 1915, in the amusement hall of an old folks outing and grandfather is in the picture with Aunt Hanna and grandmother and (grandmother is listed as Christian Peter Boel’s) second wife.
lifting hay into barn
Aunt Mary told story about grandfather coming home drunk one day and Aunt Hanna kicked him out.  He walked two miles on State Road to his sister’s house and went in and cried “Why did I ever get mixed up with this second woman?  I had a good wife and didn’t know it.” 
Eugene’s Story
They all promised their father that they would stay and care for him.  He died on September 6, 1877 at age 79.  Anne Marie Poulsdatter now 77 years old told her son, Christian Peter Peterson that it was time to go and find her daughter Christiana, who left Denmark 22 years earlier. With them went Kristine Petrine, age 13; Christen 11; Soren Peter 9; Elsine Kirstine and Jens 7.  His two servants, Anne Johanna Jensen (Hanna) and Andres Anderson also accompanied them.  Two years later Little Grandma, my Grandma, Mary, 5 year old twins Niels and Pierre followed them.  Expecting to be welcomed. 

Christiana Peterson Twede
MARY BOEL HALVERSON said, at the age of ten years I accompanied my mother and the twins, Pierre and Niels, to join my father in Great Salt Lake.  We came from New York by train, arriving in Utah on June 24, 1880.  "I recall that I was not seasick on my voyage to this country, and each evening the missionaries would come and conduct prayer.  This was strange to me, as we had never had prayer in our home. "Upon arrival in Salt Lake, we stayed in a big room of a building in the tithing yard.  We stayed there for about two days and then moved down to Pleasant Grove.  Mormons were practicing polygamy then and ordered him to marry Hannah.

Grandma Boel was angry when she found out her husband had married her maid, Hannah.  She said she would never live in the same house with Aunt Hanna.  She lived in a house near them in Pleasant Grove.  When they moved to Mapleton where she lived in a dugout.  Grandma Halverson lived with her mother in the dugout until a new house was built.  In the winter the walls, ceiling and furniture became covered with frost.  In 1889 when Mary and Andrew were married, Little Grandma came to live with them until her death 34 years later. 

7th Handcart co. with Christiana 1100 mile walk
Their first home was in South Mapleton - a one-room rock house with a dirt roof.  The home was at the mouth of Spanish Fork Canyon, just below the Powder Plant.  It was called "Skarpenswee" a Danish name for sharp penetrating wind, "Oh how the wind would blow in the morning".  From there they moved to Redmond in southern Utah and then back to Palmyra for a while.  Dad was about five years old when they loaded everything they owned on a wagon and walked to Ucon, Idaho.  Then came the “Big Freeze” and their crops were left frozen in the ground.  They sold everything they owned went back to Mapleton.  Grandpa Boel met them on their way and gave Grandma Halverson the Old Aaron Johnson home with seven acres of land for taking care of his wife, Little Grandma.  It was deeded to her and she told Andrew, I am not moving again and she didn’t.  After a few additions and repairing the leaky roof they were quite happy and contented. 

Aunt Mary remembers when her father would sing these Old Danish songs to her mother at night.  The Danish language and customs were passed down to all the daughters.  We had fun singing together at night.  I still remember them and this is what we sang. 
Little Grandma, Peter Boel
TOMAS de MAUS         
Tomas ta maus
Da rattery hooks
Ta bitt tast auer
So skafa noon

Tomas de maus
De rotte ind hus
De lidt de stor
Sa skaffe nogen


English Translation
Thomas the mouse
Take the rats in the house
The little and the big
So I can't find any

Joe Bole said, “My grandparents were married when she was 33 years old and he was 23 years old.  They had nine children in eight years, boom-boom-boom, he just wore grandmother right out, one of them died in infancy, so they actually had eight kids altogether.  (Nine)

I talked to everyone I could find to learn what I could.  My Dad and all the men-folk I talked too liked and admired Grandpa Boel.  Joe Boel and his mother, Molly hated him.  The three Aunt Mary’s and Elda were often unhappy with him.  But he give a house and land to Jens and Mary, another to Pierre and Molly and one the Andrew and Mary.  My Grandmother never ever condemned him and loved him.  I wished I could have known him. 

Peter & Aunt Hanna
Grandpa Boel was a very good at everything he did.  He became rich when all the farmers around him were starving.  I do have a few of his blacksmithing tools and a very small delicate vice he made for making clock parts and gears.  Dad tells of all the clocks he repaired.  They were all ticking away on his walls.  He could do almost anything he put his mind to but he seemed to get in trouble driving his fancy car.  There were no traffic laws then so he challenged the street-car for the right-of-way and got fined.  He paid money to a boy he hit to make sure he wouldn't be sued. 
Ane Melvina Boel died at 5 years
Aunt Hannah's second child
Dad loved to be his chauffeur and he liked to be pampered.  He didn’t have to crank his automobile anymore, fix a flat, adjust the bands or repair it.  Dad made sure it was ready to go when he wanted it.  He came often to visit with his sister, Christiana Twede .   he had no idea that Dad, Gidian and Herman Twede and John Hafen would push his car silently away from the house, start it up and away they would go.
Peter Boel, Herman & Gidion Twede, John Hafen

Little Grandma lived in Grandma’s home for about 34 years.   She had her own room on the south side of Andrew's and Mary's home.  She was cared for and everyone loved her she died in 1923.   A year later, Grandma's father, Christian Boel, moved into their home and was cared for until his death in 1926
Little Grandma Sorensen was born in Denmark and was buried in Mapleton, Utah at the age of 88 years old. 

 I inherited a great deal of her genealogy lost in Andrew Halverson’s book.  She has brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, cousins, grandpas and grandma we know nothing about.  Her penmanship is beautiful and she seemed to be very intelligent.   


A baby picture was found a few years ago.  No one wanted it or knew who she was so now it is hanging on my wall.  It was the only living child of Aunt Hannah and Peter Boel.  Ane Melvina was their their second child born and buried in Pleasant Grove.  Imagine Little Grandma’s surprise finding her maid with husbands baby. 


Ane Mary Peterson Halverson

Anni Damkjaer and Her Discoveries

Anni lives in Denmark.  She is my “friend and small cousin” (distant cousin).  She asked if she could help and she did.  She used Little Grandma’s notes to solve a hundred year old Peterson and Halverson family puzzle.  She said she is stubborn and will not quit until it’s finished.  She not only built us a “Family Tree” and we now have a “History” to add to our family.
Little Grandma wrote many notes about her family.  They sat idle for almost a hundred years.  The writing is fading and paper is brittle but I have copied them.  Many of us have looked at the notes and just put them away as nothing important. 
Anni looked at what we had and said there is something wrong.
Well Soren Nielsen in Denmark is like Jack Smith here, just too many of them. 
Anni said, “Wow”, “You have sent me a “Gold Mine”.  “I salute that sweet old lady for writing this down”.  You must delete all you have about Soren Nielsen and his parents, they have nothing to do with your family.  Our prized proofs did show Ellen and Soren but led us astray.  Grandma told us the right Parish to search.
Ane Mary Peterson Halverson
  
Danish Census showed us what was happening in the Sorensen home. 

Maren Kirstine (Little Grandma) was born in 1834,
Her sister, Else was born live 10 days and died in 1835,
Her brother, Jens Christen is born 1837
Her father dies in 1838
Her mother is sent to prison in 1839,
The family dwindled down to two babies. 

Then somehow Anni found them on a farm, called Sonderstedhus in Ajstrup Parish.  The children are listed as “plejeborn” poor people who are too poor to support themselves and the Parish cares for them.  Maren Kirstine is now 5 years and her brother, Jens Christian 2 years.  The foster parents Niels Nielsen 65 and his wife, Kirsten 56 will care for them for the next dozen years or so.  Maren Kirstine was given more schooling than the average Danish girl.  She was taught to read and write as well as being trained to run a house and farm.  Her penmanship was beautiful, and easy to read.  She wrote her notes late in life.  At least 40 years after talking to her mother and writing about relatives that she had not known.
Andreas, man-servant from Denmark
In the1860 Census, Aalborg, Delete, Store Ajstrup, we find mother and daughter living here in the parish.  Ellen Kirstine Jensdatter is called a 47 year old widow, died in the Parish at age of 69.  Her brother, Jens Christian at a young age moved to Skarp Salling for work.   But Maren Kirstine is now 26 and should have been married or sent away to work after her training, is still here with the Nielsen family like a daughter would.  Was she now caring for her foster parents who are now 85 and 76 years old? 
 I have no idea when mother and daughter found each other.  They must have spent a lot of time together for Maren to learn as much as she did about family and relatives.  It was here in Store Ajstrup a few years later she marries Christian Peter and give birth to nine children




 “I salute that sweet old lady for writing this down”.  You must delete all you have about Soren Nielsen and his parents, they have nothing to do with your family. 
Things were happening in the Sorensen home Little Grandma was born in 1834, her sister, Else died in 1835, her father dies in 1838 and her mother is sent to prison in 1839, now only the children were left.  

Peter Boel top with black beard, Aunt Hanna center
Then somehow Anni found them on a farm, called Sonderstedhus in Ajstrup Parish.  In the 1840 Census the children are listed as “plejeborn” poor people who are too poor to support themselves and the Parish cares for them.  Maren Kirstine is now 5 years and her brother, Jens Christian 2 years. 


She was given more schooling than the average Danish girl.  She was taught to read and write as well as being trained to run a house and farm.  Her penmanship was beautiful, and easy to read.  She wrote her notes late in life.  At least 40 years after talking to her mother and writing about relatives that she had not known.

Mary Halvorsen Peterson
Jens Peterson
Maren Kirstine is now 26 and should have been married or sent away to work after her training but is staying with the Nielsen family like a daughter would.  She I think was now a care giver for an 85 years old man and his 76 wife. 

 I have no idea when mother and daughter found each other but Maren did learn who she was and who here relatives were.  It was here in Store Ajstrup a few years later she marries Christian Peter and give birth to nine children.   

In the1860 Census, Aalborg, Delete, Store Ajstrup, we find mother and daughter living here in the parish.  Ellen Kirstine Jensdatter is called a 47 year old widow years.  She seems to have had enough of married life and died a 69 year old widow.  Her brother, Jens Christian at a young age has been sent to Skarp Salling to work.   

Maren Kirstine is now 26 and should have been married or sent away to work after her training but is staying with the Nielsen family like a daughter would.  She was a care giver for an 85 years old man and 76 wife. 
 I have no idea when mother and daughter found each other but this was when Maren learn who she was and who here relatives were.  It was here in Store Ajstrup a few years later she marries Christian Peter and give birth to nine children.
back center Peter Boel
Aunt Hanna,  Little Grandma (Maren Kirstine)
together at Church

A Family Witch
Aunt Mary Halverson Bowen said her mother, grandmother and aunts passed on some scary tales. 

1st-in Denmark, Andreas came into the house as a servant for “Board and Room” but here in America Peter Boel was told that he must be paid.  One day he came back from town with a beautiful brass poster bed and a modern mattress.  Every morning he would wake up and tell Hannah how wonderful it was.  Well soon got angry enough to cast a spell on Andrea’s new bed.  The next morning she asked him how well he slept.  As soon drifted off to sleep he would find himself on the floor.  He kept the bed and slept beside it.  He knew she had powers and always avoided her.


2nd-  one day Aunt Hannah felt slighted by a neighbor, as she watched Aunt Hannah walked up and looked into the soft brown eyes of the cow and gave it the “evil eye”.  The cow dried up and never gave milk again.  Now the neighbors were afraid of her. 

Tales and stories about her lived long after her death.  1n 1915 Aunt Hannah had a stroke and died.  While everyone was at the cemetery, Maren (Mary) Kirstine Sorensen, Mary Halvorsen Petersen and Mary Petersen Halverson went into her bedroom and found her book took it outside and burned it.  The name on the cover was “Cyprianus”.  It was a book of magic formulas, magic healing, medical prescriptions and some conjuring tricks.  It was the Devils book and it had in itself a strange and dangerous power.  Neither Heaven nor Hell will have her.  As a “Ghost” she’ll walk in the Ever Green Cemetery forever. 


Grandma's son, Raymond Halverson who died soon after in 1918 said, "Don't bury me in the Ever Green Cemetery with Aunt Hannah or I will come back and haunt you", he was buried as he wished in Spanish Fork. 

Aunt Hannah did get her man, house and position, she chased Little Grandma out of the American Fork home and Molly McClain from the Mapleton home.  She won every battle but lost the War.  She was feared and despised by everyone.  It must have been sad and lonely life.   


Aunt Hannah's Cypriaus Book
CYPRIANUS--Whether this book has been printed is uncertain, but manuscript copies of it are concealed here and there among the common people, who regard it as something sacred. Those who possess the book of Cyprianus need never want money; they can read the devil to them and from them, and no one can harm them, not even the devil himself.  But whoever possesses the book cannot get rid of it; for whether he sells, burns or buries it, it will come back; and if a person cannot dispose of it before his death, it will go badly with him. The only method is, to write his name in it in his own blood, and lay it in a secret place in the church, together with four shillings clerk's fee.

MORE WITCHES
A court document dated 1675 told how an old woman, Margeta, was dragged in front of the court and accused of witch craft.  Margeta was disabled and she couldn't move without help.  She was accused of having visited Blakulla, a place where witches gather and do whatever witches do.  The principal witness was a Margeta's grandchild, a seven year old boy she told the court that she had not done any witchcraft.  After several demands to try to persuade (torture) this woman to confess, they finally got her to confess and she was sentenced to death by the court.  She and six other witches were soon burned alive.

WISE WOMEN
Long before Cyprianus became a book of the Devil it was a dream book, to interpret your dreams.  Today it contains recipes of medicine, too, medicine made out of things found in the nature, flowers, grass etc. with formulary of how to make it and how to use it.  If people don’t feel that the cure they get from the doctor helps, some of them go to a wise woman or man, to get nature medicine or healing. So those people healing and making nature medicine today are those who were called witches then.



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