The first meeting of the Jane Davis Camp for 2019-20 was held on Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019, at the First/Fourth Ward church beginning at 1:35 p.m. Captain Linda Arnell called the meeting to order and gave the patriotic thought and led the Pledge of Allegiance. The song “Daughters of the Utah Pioneers” was sung, led by Linda and accompanied by Debra Jacobs. Linda thanked everyone who had helped with the museum this summer and it was announced that our camp is in charge of the Christmas party this year, possibly to be held on Monday, December 2. Dues were collected from those present.
The pioneer history of Harriet Jane Osburn Davis, after whom our camp is named, was given by Linda Arnell. Harriet Jane Osburn was born February 8, 1847 in Mercer, Missouri, the ninth child of David Osburn and Cynthia Butler. Her mother died when she was only five years old, and she was raised by two different stepmothers, both of whom were very unkind to her and her siblings. The family crossed the plains and settled first in Bountiful, Utah and later moved to East Weber and later Hyrum, Utah. She enjoyed working in the fields with her father as it was better than being in the house with her stepmothers. When she was sixteen, she convinced her father to let her go and work for a family in Salt Lake, thus being away from the stepmothers. She later went to work for a family in Brigham and eventually married their son, Jared Moroni Davis, on 26 January 1864. They were called to settle in the Bear Lake Valley and settled in Montpelier, Idaho in 1864. Her son, Jefferson Moroni Davis was born that fall, the first male child born in Bear Lake County. She had thirteen children, ten of whom lived to adulthood. Her husband died in 1906. She was a faithful member of the Church and later wrote a paper on the pioneering of Bear Lake Valley, particularly Montpelier, for the Daughters of Utah Pioneers Camp in Montpelier. She was eighty five years old when she passed away on June 6, 1932, in her home in Montpelier.
Linda Arnell then showed us a picture of an antique pump organ that used to belong to her Arnell grandparents and which is now hers. We will take turn presenting personal items for our artifact presentation each month. The practice song “Wedding of the Rails” was sung and discussed.
Denice Gentrup gave the lesson, “Stories from the Iron Mission.” In 1849 Brigham Young sent Parley P. Pratt and a group of 47 men to explore the central and southern portions of the Utah Territory. They split into two groups, one group establishing a base camp and the other group going down to the Cedar City and St. George areas. They discovered iron ore in the area which is now Iron County as well as coal and lead. In 1850 there was a call for volunteers to establish an iron foundry and about one hundred families were called to establish the Iron Mission. Parowan became the “mother community” of southern Utah. An iron furnace was built to melt down the iron ore. More iron workers were called to go help in 1853, but there was trouble with the Indians because they felt the pioneers were trying to take over their land. During the years of 1863-1867, the Saints erected an Old Rock Church in Parowan at a cost of about $8000. It was made from the yellow sandstone quarried locally. It was later turned into a DUP museum.
Refreshments were served by Bonnie Phillips. Attending the meeting were Linda Arnell, Bonnie Hemmert, Debra Jacobs, Denice Genrup, Beth Woolstenhulme, Bonnie Phillips, and visitor Marsha Passey.