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Thelma Evelyn Tueller Dunford
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Birth: Apr. 14, 1900
Bear Lake County
Idaho, USA
Death: Jan. 22, 1978
Davis County
Utah, USA

On this 31st day of March, 1965 I, Thelma Tueller Dunford, attempt writing a brief history of my life. In the year 1900 on the 14th day of April, I was born to Jacob Tueller, Jr. and Louise Rogers Tueller in the town of Paris, Idaho. When I reached the age of eight years, I was baptized in the Paris creek by Adolph Hunzeker.

My early years were spent in Paris City Schools. I shall never forget the fear we all had of "Paddy Miles" the principal of that school. The old school house had a great many steps to climb and not a very large play area. My brother, Wilford Tueller, was a teacher in that school. He produced many interesting operettas. It really made going to school less tiring. When Velma, Abe's wife, and I were in the seventh and eighth grades, we had Dan Rich as our instructor. We spent much time debating and doing many competitive things. We always enjoyed competing with Earl Shephers, Raymond Budge, Adolph Tueller and many others. When we started school at Fielding Academy we thought no one knew as much as Dan Rich.

Much time in High School was spent in musical areas. It was always a great thrill to travel with the "Tueller Orchestra" when they played for dances in various areas. Bear Lake was a very popular place. I remember going to Soda Springs several times. We always stayed at the Lowe home. In those days the evenings the orchestra spent practicing were very popular. Many times in the summer time, our lawn was full of people listening. Abe was always performing, singing or playing cello. He was such a wonderful brother, always looking after my welfare. Our family did some traveling putting on family programs. The night we appeared in Bloomington, I met A. Teller Dunford, my future husband.

When I was seventeen years of age, I went to Ogden, Utah to live with Harrison and Ivy Greenhalgh. I was successful in obtaining employment at Greenwalls, a confectionary and eating place. All through the 1918 and early 1919 flu epidemic, I was there. We wore masks much of the time. Many troops of armed forces passed through Ogden going to many different places. Many of them visited our store on 25th Street. Often people were anxious to see a 'Mormon' and hear something of our religion. Ivy and her child, Darold, had the flu, so I quit my job to care for them. After I was able to travel, I returned to Paris, Idaho.

The night I arrived there, we attended a basketball game at Fielding Academy. The next morning almost everyone in town came down with the flu. Naturally the town was in quarantine. They came after me, but decided that they couldn't have got it from me, because I hadn't had it and everyone must have been exposed before that evening.

Teller and I had plans to get married. The temples were all closed. So we were married March 14th, 1919 by Bishop Ed Sutton. The following October, we traveled to Logan to take out our endowments. Teller had purchased the Paris Barber Shop. He became very successful. Our first baby, Russel, was born while we were still in Paris, as was Norma. When Russel was one year old he contracted intestinal flu, and we laid him to rest in the Bloomington cemetery.

When Norma was nine months old we journeyed to Provo, where Teller wanted to attend BYU. He had hopes of studying dentistry. Our family was growing and he was very popular as a ladies hairstylist, so he decided to work full time. He completed two years of college.

When Meryl was two years old (our youngest daughter) we decided to buy our first home in Provo, at 66 East 3rd North. It was a lovely home, but we had our basement built into rooms and felt we had to rent them to BYU students. Before the winter was over, I was feeding ten hungry football players besides my family. All those students seemed hungry for home life. While living at this location our experiences were varied. We moved into the basement so we could rent the upstairs to Professor Pardoe and his family.

Then the depression hit. Teller's work was very slow so we decided to give up our home. We rented a place in Grandview from a Mr. Taylor. We were able, because of new rules in FHA to repossess our home. We moved back but weren't too happy there. We were interested in getting some land so we could raise a garden. We purchased a plot in Pleasant View, in Provo where we had a home built. We were there about five years, and planted a lovely raspberry patch and a few of all kinds of fruit trees. Rex, our son, was interested in raising chickens in a future farmer project. So naturally, a lovely modern chicken coop was built. He was very successful in this. He won a scholarship to Utah State College.

The Second World War came along so many of the young men felt it their duty to enlist. So off to war they went. Teller had always wanted a shop of his own. When he heard Pop Martin offering his place on 8th North for sale, he wanted it. Nothing would do but sell our home and purchase that property. We did. It was very interesting to build the place into a thriving business. Much remodeling was done. We worked very hard. Teller had three rooms for his beauty shop. We had a garage with a nice room built over it. The work here was very hard because of the long hours, sometimes 6 AM until 1 or 2 AM. I had an eating place and a grocery store. I never could have done it except for Georgia Adams. She remained with us while she attended college.

While here we discovered our youngest son Chaunce had contracted a disease of his hips, pertussis disease. We had him in a cast during his first year in school. We decided we could not keep up working so hard, so we decided to build a modern beauty shop in front of the home and sell the store. Floyd Booth bought the store and we moved into the new shop in March. That August, Teller had a slight stroke. I felt that even though he couldn't work, the shop would take care of us, but it bothered him having people call asking for him.

That property was valuable so someone was always after it, so he sold it and we moved into a little house on Smoot Avenue in Provo. I could see our money dwindling and nothing coming in. I was at Relief Society one day and heard some women talking about chicken farms in American Fork. That evening the real estate man took us to American Fork. He told us not to get our hopes up because so many people had looked at this place and the people wouldn't sell. Everything worked out and in a short time we were caring for chickens. That was a rewarding project, but Teller was continually becoming weaker so nothing would do but to move to California.

When we were settled in San Anselmo, we went to "Guide Dogs for the Blind" where we secured employment as a couple. We were there for five years. People there were wonderful to us. While there Teller passed away on March 7, 1958. I knew "Guide Dogs" needed a new couple because Teller hadn't been able to do anything for such a long time, so I handed in my resignation. I then came back to Utah, visited with my children for a while, but I wasn't happy. So I went to the Relief Society building in Salt Lake to see what kind of employment they would recommend. They read the recommendation from "Guide Dogs" and suggested I try a mission home. I went to the Northern California Mission home in San Francisco. I remained there five years as housekeeper and cook. I shall always thank my Heavenly Father for that experience.

--Source:, [Original: Thelma Tueller Dunford, March 31, 1965]; accessed online and transcribed by Annie Duckett Hundley, 16 September 2011.
Family links: 
  Jacob Tueller (1855 - 1939)
  Emma Rogers Tueller (1865 - 1949)
  Alma Teller Dunford (1897 - 1958)*
  Russell Gooding Dunford (1920 - 1921)*
  Norma Dunford Burbidge (1922 - 2008)*
  Alma Rex Dunford (1924 - 2006)*
  Richard Dunford (1930 - 1930)*
  Annie Emaline Tueller Harris (1877 - 1962)**
  Wilford Lorenzo Tueller (1889 - 1992)*
  Abraham Horace Tueller (1896 - 1946)*
  Thelma Evelyn Tueller Dunford (1900 - 1978)
  Archibald Isaac Tueller (1904 - 1982)*
*Calculated relationship
East Lawn Memorial Hills Cemetery
Utah County
Utah, USA
Created by: Annie Duckett Hundley
Record added: Sep 17, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 76624341
Thelma Evelyn <i>Tueller</i> Dunford
Added by: Annie Duckett Hundley
Thelma Evelyn <i>Tueller</i> Dunford
Added by: Annie Duckett Hundley
Thelma Evelyn <i>Tueller</i> Dunford
Cemetery Photo
Added by: John Warnke
Photos may be scaled.
Click on image for full size.

- Annie Duckett Hundley
 Added: Sep. 17, 2011

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