|Isaac Joseph Seely, concluded|
He named his first daughter Lucy after his mother. This daughter spent happy days in association with her grandmother Lucy Ann. She learned to sew, and baked her first cake in her grandmother's home and under her direction. With a young family, Isaac was called to pioneer in Hoytsville, Summit County, Utah. The family later moved to East Mill Creek, Salt Lake County, Utah, where they lived until the parents’ deaths. Elizabeth died October 14, 1885, and Isaac was left a widower. The two oldest children, both girls, helped with the younger boys and when Lucy married, she took one of the younger children into her home, and kept reminding the other children to remember the religious training their mother had given them. It is said of Isaac that one would not call him a particularly religious man, but one who was straight as a string and honest as the day is long.
There are generally two side to every story. Isaac said that at one time a group of men, Church men, approached him about making a change in his main irrigation ditch on his property. Knowing that water is the lifeblood of the soil, and believing the change would be disastrous to his welfare, he refused them. The men then told him to be at a hearing to be held on a certain date. Isaac smiled--and did not attend. Shortly afterward, he was informed that the hearing had been held and he was cut off from the Church. Years later and after his death, a son had Isaac reinstated in the Church. The minutes of that memorable hearing when Isaac was cut off from the Church had been recorded upon a torn piece of wrapping paper. Once a daughter said to him, “Dad, how do you expect to get to heaven?” and he replied with a twinkle in his eye, “Well, Brigham Young told me once he would help save me and I’m sure counting on that!”
A son came to him and told him he would like to go on a mission for his Church and his father did not stop to complain, he was a widower caring for the family who were not married, but gladly sent the son into the mission field. Isaac raised an honest family. He gave to the poor and was available at all times to help those who needed it.
Among the family stories the children told was the one about the baking powder biscuits he made for them every day. It was one of the younger boys who ran home from school one day, bursting through the kitchen doorway to shout, “Hold everything, Dad--our teacher said if anyone ate baking powder biscuits every day of his life for thirty years it would pretty near kill him!” His father said, “Well son, let’s keep track of time and when you reach the age of twenty-two we'll stop eating ’em.”
So lived a hardy, early pioneer who had an abundance of intestinal fortitude and a great compassion for the down-trodden.
Carter, Kate. Our Pioneer Heritage: Recollections of Pioneer Days (1958), pp. 187-189.
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(Isaac Joseph Seely)
Updated Mar 2014
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