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 Mary Millissa/Melissa <I>Walker</I> Harper

Mary Millissa/Melissa Walker Harper

Birth
Pleasant Grove, Utah County, Utah, USA
Death 10 Mar 1900 (aged 41)
Pleasant Grove, Utah County, Utah, USA
Burial Pleasant Grove, Utah County, Utah, USA
Plot B-28-007-01
Memorial ID 37965 · View Source
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Daughter of Henson Walker, Jr, and Mary Green

Her full name: Mary Melissa Walker

Wife of Alfred William Harper, married 18 Sep 1876 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, UTah, USA


Melissa was the oldest child of a family of seven children, and her responsibilities were many. The hardships of pioneer life developed a love in her for her family and tenderness in her heart which grew with the years.

In telling her life story, she once said the first thing impressive in her life happened when she was almost three years old. Her mother took Melissa and her baby brother, Will, to see an Aunt who had a tiny baby. The soldiers were in town fighting the Indians, and they wheeled their cannons in this home. Mary and her sister-in-law Pemlo Green had to take their children and flee. Mary was leading Melissa by the hand and carrying Will in her arms. As she went to the street, the Indains called, "Run Squaw, run, we shoot, we shoot." They ceased their fire until the family was across the street. The tradegy to Melissa was not of the Indians but the fact that she lost one of her new shoes in the mud of the street and her Mother daren't let her stop for it.

Melissa lived on a farm. Her life was like all pioneer daughters. She helped on the farm as well as in the house. She could handle a team of horses as well as a man could. She worked hard to help her parents get the necessities of life.

Melissa was a beautiful girl, being slender, having black hair and dark brown eyes. She had a friendly, sweet disposition which endearded her to all who knew her. She was always happiest when she could help others.

She married Alfred William Harper Sep. 18 1875 in the Endowment House in Salt Lake City, Utah. They moved to Lindon, Utah, one mile south of Pleasant Grove, Utah. From a tent on a sagebrush flat they built a beautiful home, surrounded by shade trees, large lawns, and flowers of evry kind. Flowers such as the early Snowdrop, narcissus, violets and chrysanthemums in the late fall could be found around our home.

Melissa & Alfred were a happy and devoted couple, sharing joy and sorrow together.

Alfred was called to fulfill a mission to New Zealand which he did very honorably. Melissa took over the responiblity of the home and family of four small children, the baby being but three months old.

The means of their liveihood then was that of a fruit farm. In those days fruit was dried for market, so during the fruit season our large lawn was covered with scaffolds of drying fruit.

It was the custom of the neighbors to gather ten or twenty busheld of peaches or other fruit during the day, then that evening group themselves together and have a fruit cutting. Refreshments were served and all had a good time as they worked together.

The Indains were no longer hostiles, yet they came often in groups to beg for food & clothing. Gypsies roamed the country and begged or stole whatever they needed. Melissa, alone with her small family, was often frightened. Do we, as her famiy, appreciate her faith and courage and the long hours of hard work.

After Alfred came home from his Mission, they purchased more land. Their home was always an open house and all were made welcome. The children's friends were as important to Melissa & Alfred as were their own friends. They loved children and enjoyed their company. their home was the center of activity whenever a party or soical gathering ws had. Reunions were held on our spacious lawns and in our home.

Melissa was a good cook, efficient seamstress and yet she found time to help a needy friend or neighbor.

Melissa was sincere in her faith and religion. In her ealy married life, she worked in the Sunday School. she worked in the mutual organization, was a member of the Ward Choir and a Relief Society teacher. She was sustained as Primary President Sept 14, 1890 and held this until her death March 10, 1900. She was governed by love, was always sincere in her religion and faith in the Lord. She will always be remebered for her love of living and the assocation of people. She was the mother of nine children, namely: Mary, Annie, Bertha, Alfred, Perry, Ruth, Leah, Tabitha and Seth Roy.

All of the children have thrilled many times as people have told us "You had a wonderful mother; no one ever more kind or more loved." Her last words were a regret that she must leave Alfred alone with their little children to raise.

She passed away, as before stated, March 10, 1900 at the age of 41, shortly after the birth of her ninth child, Seth Roy Walker Harper, her third son. This child followed her in death and was buried in her arms in the same casket.
By Helen Harper



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  • Maintained by: SRBentz
  • Originally Created by: Utah State Historical Society
  • Added: 2 Feb 2000
  • Find A Grave Memorial 37965
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Mary Millissa/Melissa Walker Harper (8 Mar 1859–10 Mar 1900), Find A Grave Memorial no. 37965, citing Pleasant Grove City Cemetery, Pleasant Grove, Utah County, Utah, USA ; Maintained by SRBentz (contributor 47051679) .