Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Alfred Lorenzo Baddley (1862-1936)

It was after George Baddley and Charlotte DeGrey had accepted the call for a mission in Dixie in Southern Utah and had settled in the small community of Rockville, Washington County, Utah, that Alfred Lorenzo Baddley was born. His birth place was a small makeshift cabin at the foot of the mountain and he made his appearance on September 14, 1862.

Though no knowledge of it found said in the tiny child of Alfred Lorenzo, the family had many trials and hardships. Besides the daily struggle for existence, there was the constant fear of Indians to rasp the heart and soul of those faithful builders of empires.

One evening after George had left his young wife and small son alone while he went tracting, there came a knock at the door. When Charlotte, Alfred Lorenzo's mother, timidly opened the door she saw several buck Indians standing at the doorstep. They pushed their way into the tiny cabin and all sat down on the floor. The Indians knew she was terrified at their presence, so they sat and kept pointing their fingers at her and laughing loudly. Charlotte feared for herself but her first thoughts were for her small son sleeping soundly in his crib. She gave the Indians many articles, besides some much-needed sugar and goods before they finally left.

After spending three years in the Dixie Mission helping to build and develop the small community. Alfred Lorenzo's parents were released to return to Salt Lake City because of his father's ill health. The extreme heat and hardships of pioneering were too much for George Baddley so he moved his young family back to Salt Lake City.

Alfred, however, had grown and developed into a sturdy lad. His home life in Rockville was a pleasant one for those days of hardship. There was plenty to occupy a young active mind. Alfred's father was very strict but he was a devoted father and the children learned very young in life the virtue of honesty and truthfulness.

Alfred was eight years old when his father put him on a mule and tied a sack of wheat behind him and sent him to the mill (which [was] in Liberty Park in Salt Lake City) to have the wheat ground into flour. When the process had been completed, the miller put the sack of flour on the mule behind Alfred, but failed to tie the sack on securely. On his arrival home the sack was nearly empty and there was a white trail of flour along the road. His father was quite quick-tempered, so Alfred Lorenzo received a sound spanking.

Alfred's duties as a boy were many for he was very young when his father died. He was the eldest child in the family and felt his responsibility and helped his mother in many ways. Until the time he married, Alfred always gave his mother the money he earned.

When still a young lad, Alfred and other boys herded cows for some neighbors in Emigration Canyon at Salt Lake to earn a little extra money to help their families.

One day while watching the cows, Alfred saw a rattlesnake by the creek. The boys were collecting toads, lizards, and other animals for a circus they were planning to have, so Alfred decided to capture the reptile and add it to the collection. He found a forked stick which he placed over the neck of the snake to keep it quiet while they tried to tie a string around its neck. The snake struck Alfred on the thumb. The boys screamed for help and finally attracted the attention of some people who took him to the nearest place which happened to be the Wagner Brewery. There he was treated and suffered no ill effects from the snakebite. He was given the rattle from the snake and kept it all his life.

"Many times I have heard my father tell of the wonderful, happy times they had at his mother's home when he was a young man; dances, corn-husking parties, and many other parties." Words written by a daughter, Edythe Irene B. Donaldson.

Alfred had three brothers and two sisters. Henry Orson was born on April 16, 1864 near Lehi, Utah in a covered wagon as the family were returning from Rockville in the Dixie Mission. A sister, Maria, was born October 10, 1866, after the family was settled again in Salt Lake City. On February 4, 1869, another brother, George, was born, then on January 16, 1871, William was born. Sarah was the last child and second sister to Alfred Lorenzo. She was born in Salt Lake City, too, on June 13, 1872.

Again we quote the words of daughter, Edythe: "I do not know a great deal concerning my father and mother's courtship, but I do remember my mother telling of how she met Alfred. She said that while visiting an aunt in Salt Lake City, she attended a church dance with her aunt. During the dance my father (Alfred) entered and mother asked her aunt who the handsome man was. Mother said he was dressed so nicely -- high silk hat, kid gloves, and cane. He was so well-mannered and courteous. Mother told her aunt that Alfred was her idea of a husband and right there made up her mind that he was hers. Mother was a very beautiful young girl, so I guess it was love at first sight for them both."

That was the beginning of their courtship. Priscilla Lowe, who was born October 2, 1868, at Willard, Utah; and Alfred Lorenzo, who was just six years older than Priscilla. Alfred had a nice brick home built for his wife in Salt lake City when she moved in as a bride. Several years later they sold their home in Salt Lake City and moved to Willard, Utah. They built another nice home. They had a large farm and nine children to care for, so both of them had to work long and hard hours to manage their affairs. Later they built another home with all the latest conveniences for Priscilla.

Alfred and Priscilla worked hard to have a happy home for their children. They were blessed with nine fine sons and daughters, namely: Alfred Le Roy Baddley, born October 16, 1889 at Salt Lake City, and died March 2, 1890; Leo William, born April 23, 1891; George Clifford, born October 7, 1892; Lester Howard, who was born July 12, 1894; Henry Arnold, born July 3, 1896; Edythe Irene, born April 5,1900; Wallace DeGrey, who was born June 1, 1903; Ernest Wilburn, born March 10, 1905; and Constance Ilene, born November 29, 1910.

They taught their children to honor and respect their religion; to work and help take care of each other. They spent many hours with their children both in work and play. There were always games and recreation at home and various church activities in which the whole family, young and old, participated. In winter, the favorite family sport was sleigh riding and in summer there were the pleasant trips to Ogden, fifteen miles north of Willard, in the family's handsome, fringed, white-top buggy. These family activities brought unity and deeper love for one another.

To quote Edythe again, "Every year we looked forward to the trip to Ogden to see the big Ringling Brothers Circus and then dinner at one of the best restaurants. That was surely a thrill for all the family."

Priscilla was very beautiful and talented and was the leading lady in the home talent group of Willard. This group traveled to nearby towns of Ogden, North Ogden, [and] Brigham City, and had an outstanding record for the talent and entertainment they presented.

Alfred and his wife enjoyed such activities and never missed the opportunity to attend all the plays given by the old Salt Lake Theater group, both in Ogden and Salt Lake City.

Both were active and sincere in their church activities. Priscilla was President of the Primary Organization and worked in the Relief Society.

When Priscilla died at Willard, Utah on September 13, 1927, Alfred was like a man lost in a fog, so to speak. He and his wife had always been so close as they reared their family and worked for their good.

Nine years later when Alfred passed away on February 25, 1936 at Willard, Utah, those who were fortunate descendants of this fine couple lost the second part of a union which brought joy and happiness to their family and those neighbors and friends who knew them while they sojourned in mortal life.

Alfred was a dependable and good man. His religious convictions were a foundation for his action[s] and thoughts in his every day life. He kept the Word of Wisdom and lived a very respected life. He, like his own father, taught his children honesty and goodness. He was ever a friend to those in need and helped the less fortunate whenever he was able to do so. His life was a standard by which his family can live and benefit.

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