15 July 2011

Mathias Christian Funk Lund - by his son, Francis

Remember when I did a Google Search for Mathias in all his many names? Well, as "Mathias Christian Funk Lund" I got a gem...a personal history by his son Francis Marion Lund! Here's the full text.

Mathias Christian Funk Lund
by Francis M. Lund

My father, Mathias Christian Funk Lund, was born September 1, 1848 at Arnager, Bornholm, Denmark, a son of Dedrick Funk Lund and Karen (Catherina) Christina Hansen.  Father was one of a family of six boys and one girl.  Grandmother had the daughter before she married grandfather.  The daughter's name was Claudia Christine.  She married Pehr Jenson in Denmark.  They emigrated to America some time later than her parents and brothers.  They all accepted the Gospel and joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  The boys names were:  Hans Peter Funk Lund, Jacob Andreas Funk Lund, Mathias Christian Funk Lund, Janus Funk Lund, Lewis Julius Funk Lund and Willard Richard Funk Lund.

In 1864 Hans Peter, the oldest son came to America.  In 1868, Jacob Andreas came.  In 1869 Mathias Christian came.  Janus cam in 1870.  On June 20, 1871 Dedrick, his wife Karen and their youngest son, Willard Richard, left Denmark on the steamship Skandia.  They arrived in Copenhagen next morning.  Leaving there the 23 of June for England, they arrived in Hull, England, June 26, and were transferred to Liverpool by railroad the same day or during the night.  "We left England June 27, on steamship Minnesota and arrived in New York, July 5.  We left New York, July 5, arriving in Ogden, July 21, 1871." The first night they spent in Utah they slept in Mr. Van Dike's straw stack.  Mr. and Mrs. Christian Olsen were with them.

As these boys came here one at a time they worked earning money to send home so others could come.  Lewis Julius was the last of the family to come.  He came later, in 1871.

The Lund family all located in Plain City, Weber County, Utah.  A few years later, Lewis married Minnie Josephine Hansen, a young lady from Brigham City and they made their home in Brigham City.  Hans Peter married Bertha Emelia Anderson.  They had two daughters, Mary Cathrine, born October 16, 1871, at Plain City, and Annie Emelia.

Jacob Andreas died a young man.  He did not marry.

Mathias Christian married Pauline Swenson.

Janus married Christina Swenson, a sister to Pauline.  After her death, he married Martha Berry.

Lewis Julius married Minnie Josephine Hansen and Wilhelmina Katrine Romer.

Willard Richard married (first wire) Bertha Amelia after her first husband, Hans Peter died.  After Bertha's death, he married Bertha's half-sister, Anna Esther Christina Anderson.

My mother, Pauline Swenson, was born December 10, 1854 in Swalov, Swalov County, Sweden.  Her mother, Anna Pearson Swenson, joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and was baptized September 20, 1854.  Pauline never knew her father as he died of a sunstroke and was found in a wheat field where he had been working in August before she was born.  This left grandmother with one small child, Christina, to care for.

In the year 1862, when Pauline was eight years old and Christina was ten years old, their mother emigrated to America for the sake of the Gospel.  They were on the ocean six weeks.  The mother was very ill during the entire trip, leaving the girls pretty much to themselves.  Upon one occasion, during a terrible storm, they were playing on deck and narrowly escaped drowning.  Through the quick action of the captain, they were saved.  He brought them to their mother, one under each arm, soaking wet.  Their mother was very much upset, naturally.

They arrived at Castle Gardens, New York and Joined a company of Saints to cross the plains with a covered wagon and ox team.  On the way both children came down with measles.

All able bodied persons were supposed to walk and carry their children.  If they were ill they usually found a place to ride part of the time.  The children would get so tired they would take their turn riding just when they couldn't walk any further.

One day grandmother had an accident.  The wagon wheel ran over her foot and she had to ride until her foot was well enough to walk again.  This made it so the girls had to walk.  When their shoes wore out they tied rags on their feet.  When these wore out they went bare foot; poor little feet, sore and bleeding, but they just had to keep going.

After many unpleasant experiences with Indians and other troubles, they arrived in Salt Lake City, where they remained for a short time.  The they went on to Ogden, and finally to Plain City in the fall of 1863 to settle there.  They were six months coming from their native land to Utah.

This family passed through all the hardships incident to pioneer life.  They knew what it was to be hungry, barefoot and cold.  Their dwellings at first were just dugouts, merely cellars dug in the ground and covered with willows and dirt.  They had quite a struggle for existence during the fight with the grasshoppers.

Pauline and Christina worked very hard helping their mother with the weaving of carpets; spooling the warp and many other things.  They also gleaned the wheat fields, picking up the heads of wheat and other grain that the farmers left behind.  The farmers out their grain with a scythe and tied the bundles with a few strands of the tall grain.  This work was all done by hand.  The girls and women would glean the wheat fields, picking up the heads of grain that the farmers left behind.  They would put the grain in a sack and pull it along with them.  Sometimes, they gathered several sacks a day, if the farmers were careless.

The farmers gave them all the grain they gathered.  They were very grateful for this privilege; it really kept the wolf from the door.  They were so afraid of the Indians that they sometimes gave them all the food they had in the house.

This family lived in Plain City the rest of their lives.  In 1864, grandmother married Thomas Davis.  They had one daughter, Josephine.  Grandmother later gave Mr. Davis up to his first wife because the first wife was so jealous.

In 1867, she married Jens Christian Christensen.  They had one daughter, Hilda Charlotte, and a son, Peter Julius Christensen.  The step-father, Christensen did not like Christina and Pauline and was very unkind to them.  He made them work very hard in the fields and wouldn't let them go to school.

When Pauline became old enough to work for others, she went to Salt Lake City to work for Zina D. Young, one of President Brigham Young's wifes.  She was staying there at the time she married father, Mathias Christian Lund.  They were married in the Salt Lake Endowment House on May 11, 1874, by Daniel Wells.  Sister Young made dinner for them after the wedding.  She made a nice cake for dessert.  Pauline had told sister Young that Mathias couldn't afford a ring at the time, so Sister Young took a ring for her own finger and put this ring in the cake.  She marked the place and cut the cake then told them that someone would find a surprise in their piece of cake and the lucky one was to keep it.  Mother found the ring in her cake but she knew that the ring had been given to sister Young by her husband and she could not accept it.  Zina Young was very kind to my mother and a gracious lady to every one.

Both father and mother were faithful church workers.  They bought a home one block east of the northeast corner of the square in Plain City.  They had two rooms and a shanty.  They planted fruit trees, grapes and berries.  Father loved flowers as his father had done and he took pride in raising beautiful flowers.  He sent to Holland for tulip bulbs.  He had the first two-toned yellow and red tulips in Plain City.  Children were Emma Pauline, Elvira Morilla, Francis M. and Etta Laticia.

Father received a call to go on a mission and in the spring, May, 1888 he left home to go to Denmark; the country where he was born.  He was happy to accept the call.

Their fifth child was born seven months after he went on his mission, Victor Erastus.  I, Francis, was three years and eight months old when my father went on his mission.  I remember my father taking one of his work horses, putting a halter on her and riding her to Ogden to sell her to obtain money for his passage to Denmark.  The family all worked hard to keep him on his mission.  He filled his mission successfully and they were all proud and happy to have him home with them again.

The other members of the family were Heber Cornelious, Sadie Bardella, Lettie Rosella, Cyrus Moroni and Clide Erma.  Cyrus Moroni died at the age of four months from the effects of Whooping Cough.

All nine children married and had families, all living in Plain City or surrounding towns.  Mother passed away on January 21, 1924 after an illness of six days. (After having had a stroke).  She was sixty-nine years old.  All of the family were with her at the time of passing.  Sadie and Clide lived with father until his death, March 2, 1926; just two years and two months after mother's death.

I remember what a good cook my mother was.  Her pies and cakes were of the very best.  She loved to have her friends and neighbors come in the afternoon and chat over a cup of coffee and some delicious cake or pie.  Mother loved to attend her meetings and saw that all of the family were ready and off to church on time.

I remember when the ward held a fair to raise money to build a new meeting house.  People donated anything they had and it was sold for what they could get for it.  Father went to the fair; when he came home he had a beautiful bay pony for me.  I was so happy but cried because I had mumps and couldn't go out to see it and ride it.  But we had lots of fun with it after I was well.

When father was away on his mission, my sister, Emma, had to milk the cows.  I liked to take my little tin cup with me and she would milk in the cup for me to drink.  I loved it fresh and warm.  We children had a lot of fun; we made fun of almost nothing.  We didn't have to have so many toys as they have these days but I am sure we enjoyed what we had to play with better when than the children do today.

My grandmother, mother's mother, lived a half block from our home.  She was ill for a long time.  Mother used to go over there every day to take care of her.  I remember the big apple tree near the house.  Those apples were so good.  They were early apples.

In the fall of the year, when it was raining, we would get a large pan and fill it with grapes, apples and pears and sit around the table and enjoy eating them while it rained and we couldn't go outside.  There was a big pear tree near the house.  I like to get up early and get the nice big pears that fell during the night.  They were delicious.

I was a bashful boy and went out of my way to miss meeting girls.  When I went out with the boys on Halloween night we might take foot bridges that crossed the path but when they did too much mischief I went home and kept out of trouble.  I always had a nice horse and buggy.  I had no trouble getting girls.  My friend, Delwin Sharp, and I had great times together.  When the new meeting house was finished all of the children saved their pennies to help buy a silver sacrament set; four plates for the bread, two pitchers for the water and two goblets with a handle on each side to pass the water in.  It was passed to the  people and each person took a swallow of water and passed it on to the next person.  When this set was discarded for the more modern sacrament set, Alminda Lund Johnson took care of the old set.  We now have this set in the Daughters of the Pioneers Log Cabin in Plain City.

I used to go with my father to take care of my grandmother's place after I was big enough to help.  When grandfather Lund was alive he had part of the lot in strawberries and orchard in the rest.  Their place was two blocks north and one block east of my father's home.  They built a house of adobes; two rooms with a full porch on the south and two slope rooms on the north that were never finished.

When I was small, I used to bring a little bucket of milk or some butter to grandma; my mother made such good butter.  Grandma always had some rock candy or a drink of her homemade beer; this beer was very good too.

I never knew my grandfather as I was only thirteen months old when he died of a sunstroke.  Grandma made the beer by putting barley in a pan and browning it in the oven.  She stirred it to keep it from scorching.  When it was brown she put water over it, some homemade yeast, sugar, cooked hops and put the water in it.  She put it in an earthen crock, covered this and kept it in a warm place for several days until it fermented good, skimmed the foam off then strained and put the liquid in bottles.  She corked the bottles and tied them down by putting string over the corks and around the bottle neck.  The bottles were placed in a cool place and opened as needed.  The folks made such good sausage and rolapolsa when they killed their pigs.  They made Suva; they put some of this homemade beer in a pan on the stove and warmed it when they put milk and bread in it and ate it like bread and milk.

Pete Peterson had a molasses mill just across the street east of grandma's house.  The neighbors took their sugar cane to him and he pressed the juice out of the cane, boiled it in a vat and made molasses from it.  We would stretch it until yellow and pretty.  We enjoyed this and honey candy as we couldn't buy much candy at the store, only at Christmas time.  Some folks had bees so we could get honey.  Some of the first pioneers raised silkworms and made silk, They fed the worms mulberry leaves.

Grandma lived in the big room and used the east room to store things in.  She had her bed in one corner of the room.  She had a rope that came from the ceiling hanging over her bed.  She tied small pieces of bright colored cloth along this rope and used the rope to pull herself up.  It was very helpful to her as she lived alone.  Her children were all grown when they came here.  Grandma was blessed with good health most of the time.  In the spring of 1907 her health began to fail.  She was in the habit of visiting her children often.  One day in May she left her home, walked through the lot and around Christopher Folman's blacksmith shop and into the street and a block south to my father's place.  She visited there for an hour or so then she left to visit Uncle Richard's family, about four blocks west of father's home.  She stayed there for awhile, then she went to see uncle Janus, a block south of Uncle Richard's home.  While here, she became ill and stayed at Uncle Janus' and on the 17 of May, 1907 she passed away at the age of 92 years.  She had lived a long and useful life but was never a burden to any of her family.  February 27, 1907 I married Elizabeth Ellis.  After grandmother's death, I bought her old home.  I had just been married three months and needed a place to live.  The house needed some repairs.  We were living in a two room adobe house of Robert Maw's.  We stayed there two years then Uncle George Moyes repaired the old house and we moved into it.  At this time we had one little girl, Beatrice LeVera.  We lived in the two rooms; it was small but we were happy there.  There were still tulips around the house and on the ditch bank and St. Jacobs lilies that grandpa had brought from Denmark.

We lived in this little house twelve years and by this time we had two more little girls:  Phebe Pauline (she was named Phebe for my wife's mother and Pauline for my mother) and Orla May.  Now we decided we needed a larger house.

In May, 1921 we began tearing down the old house.  We saved the adobes and lined our new home with them.  Richard Bates, a friend of ours, and John Ellis, my wife's father, did most of the building.  I helped all I could.  I had ten acres of land out on the north range I bought from Uncle Joe Rawson, aunt Josephine's second husband, and my brothers and I did the work on our father's fourteen acres near my land out north.

We had such fun in that little old house.  We had children's birthday parties in the afternoon, then the parents, uncles and aunts, all came for supper.  We popped corn, made candy and ice cream and had pie, cvake or cookies.  Vira's husband, Peter M. Folman, had a big icehouse.  They would cut ice from the pond in Warren and Four Mile in the winter when the ice was thickest.  They cut large blocks and put it in the ice house with straw under, around and over each layer of ice.  This way the ice lasted all summer.  Peter's father had a store and after his death, Peter, Vira and family lived there and ran the store.  He also had a butcher shop and sold meat.

Out new home was finished so we moved into it September, 1921.  We lived in part of Elmer Carver's house while our house was being built and our first baby boy was born there, July, 22, 1921.  We named him Ellis Marrion.  Ellis was my wife's maiden name.  In 1925, May 22, we were blessed with twins, a boy and a girl.  We named them Grant Fancis and Grace.  When they were three years old and on the 6th of May, 1928, we had another set of twins, two more adorable little boys, Each child brought more happiness into our home.  We named these boys Kenneth Dee and Leith Lee.  The Lord has blessed us very much with our family and we thank him every day of our lives for giving us such wonderful children.  Those who live in Ogden come to see us as often as they can.  Keith and Kenneth and Orla live near us and they come every day to help us with any work that needs to be done.  What would we do without our children.  We can truthfully say that our family have never given us any heartaches or trouble.  We have a prayer in our hearts always that our children may follow the teachings of the Church and keep the commandments of God.

(Source: Lund, Francis. Mathias Christian Funk Lund: Personal History. Posted online by Maynard Hammond. http://hammond-home.com)

You can also download the pdf here if you'd like.

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