Monday, June 9, 2008

It Happened 160 Years Ago Today

That's right. 160 years ago today was the "Miracle of the Gulls." A few years ago, I put on a pioneer bonnet and told this story to the children in our Primary organization at church. You see, when the Mormon pioneers settled in Utah in the mid 1800's they planted crops. The crops were attacked by large crickets. As the story goes, the pioneers prayed to God that he would save them. If their crops failed, the pioneers would starve. Soon flocks of seagulls came and ate the crickets and theryby saved the crops. That's the story in a nutshell. But this is how it went when I told it to our Primary.
I told the children that the crickets attacked the crops and they were so worried. I asked them, "What do you think they should do?" One little boy raised his hand and said, "Call the bug man!"

I related this story to a friend who's parents had served a mission in Vietnam. They told this same story to a little Primary organization there. The children there could not believe the pioneers would pray to God and ask them to save the crops. You see, in Vietnam, crickets are food. They saw the crickets as more of a blessing!
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In 1848 when the Miracles of the Gulls took place, my ancestors were still in England trying to earn enough money to get to America. Thomas Midgley, a shoemaker in Yorkshire, England, joined the Mormon church with his wife and 7 children. He and one of his sons went ahead of the family to Utah. His wife and the rest of the family came later. His wife died along the trail and his oldest daughter Ann (my great-great grandmother) had to bury her along the Platte River in Wyoming. She and her little brothers and sisters made the trek alone without any parents.
Thomas Midgley continued his business as a shoemaker in Nephi, Utah, south of Salt Lake City, until his death in 1870. His daughter Ann was a weaver and quilter. I wrote about her here: Why I Quilt.
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Quilt Progress: Here's the sampler quilt I'm working on. I'm just getting my strength back after my bad cold. It's getting done, slowly, but surely.
Have a great day!

8 comments:

Tina said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tina said...

Thanks for sharing the story about the gulls and about your own family history. I love to hear about the miracles that happened surrounding the early Mormon pioneers, they had such faith! Now I'm going to go back and read about your great, great grandmother!

Thimbleanna said...

Once again, beautiful quilting Vivian! Thanks for the history reminder -- I love the pioneer stories!

jlk said...

The Seagull story is my favorite. I was a missionary on Temple Square, and that was my favorite place to stop. It's a powerful reminder that God cares about the everyday things in our lives.

I love your quilts. You do such beautiful work!

Anonymous said...

I love your history comments. The sister, Elizabeth of my 5th great grandfather, Hezekiah Love, married the grandson of Mr. Smith while they were still in IL. Also, my maiden name is/was Love. Wish I had gotten your quilting genes. You are so talented.

Minou said...

Hope you are giving copies of your family history stories to your kids..they are such good stories.

The quilt is beuatiful. Hope you are on the mend

Suzanne

Diane said...

I remember going to the Mormon Miracle Pageant when I was a little girl. It was a yearly tradition. Thanks for sharing the story. I don't know if I would have remembered the date! Glad you're feeling better.

Marcie said...

My friend just directed me to your blog to see the masthead, which is wonderful! I am always excited to find other LDS quilting bloggers! Your blog is great! I just started a list of people making Prairie Paisley quilts on my blog. May I link to yours? Do you know anyone else making them? Come visit!