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GEMS OF REMINISCENCE ***




Produced by Lauren McGuinness, Mormon Texts Project Intern
(http://mormontextsproject.org/)







GEMS OF REMINISCENCE


SEVENTEENTH BOOK OF THE
FAITH PROMOTING SERIES
DESIGNED FOR THE INSTRUCTION AND
ENCOURAGEMENT OF YOUNG
LATTER-DAY SAINTS


COMPILED AND PUBLISHED BY
GEO. C. LAMBERT
SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH
1915



PREFACE

"Gems of Reminiscence," the title selected for this volume, is
sufficiently comprehensive to include incidents from real life on a
wide variety of subjects, so long as the effect is to promote faith.

The articles included in this volume are sufficiently varied as to
subject matter to interest most of those into whose hands it may come.

In making this volume double the size - that is, double the number of
pages - of its predecessors, we have acted upon the suggestion of a
literary friend who has had enough experience in publishing books to
realize how difficult it is to secure any profit from publishing small
editions of books of 96 pages each and binding the volumes separately
at the low price of 25 cents per volume, retail. The opinion was
expressed that most of those whose taste would lead them to buy such
a book would just as willingly pay 50 cents retail for a volume that
contained double the number of pages in the same style of binding.
We decided to try the experiment and if this venture meets with
encouragement, future volumes issued will probably be in the larger
size and the price 50 cents per volume instead of the smaller volumes
at the price of 25 cents each, as in the past.

That there is an abundance of material in the experience of faithful
members of the Church to furnish subject matter for an indefinite
number of volumes, of a faith-promoting nature, and that the young
people of the community may be benefited more by that class of reading
than any other, is as evident now as it ever has been in the past.

We bespeak the interest of all faithful members of the Church in
this work of providing the best of reading matter and at the same
time perpetuating a knowledge of incidents in their lives that might
otherwise be lost to posterity, and trust that all who have had
experience that would be faith-promoting if published, will furnish
us the material to continue the publication of the Faith-Promoting
Series as long as there is need for it. We can not promise them
pecuniary profit for so doing, but to those who will conscientiously
and intelligently help in the manner indicated we can promise the kind
of reward that has thus far encouraged us, that is, a consciousness of
having placed benefits within the reach of young Latter-day Saints that
will be appreciated in the future if not now.



CONTENTS

AMONG CANNIBALS.

CHAPTER I.

James S. Brown's Experience Previous to Being Sent as a Missionary
to the Society Islands - Remarkable Predictions by Presidents Brigham
Young and Willard Richards - Perilous Journey to California - Tragic
Fate of Most of the Company - Arrival in San Francisco - Landing
in Tahiti - Opposition from Priests and Ministers - Governor of
French Protectorate Arrayed Against Him - Elders Scatter Out - Lewd
Women Instigated by Ministers try to Entrap him - His First
Convert - Recognized by a Native who had seen him in a Dream.

CHAPTER II.

Catholic Priests Jealous of his Success - Arrested on a Trumped-up
Charge - Tried Before Governor's Aid-de-Camp - Frightful Scene Among
a School of Whales - Farce of a Trial before the Governor of the
Protectorate - Inspired to Plead his Own Cause - Impression Made
Upon the Governor - American Consul's Friendly Act - Banished from
Tahiti - Befriended by a Queen.

CHAPTER III.

Land Among Cannibals - Denounced as the American Plant - His Destruction
Demanded - Sentenced to be Roasted and Eaten - Fire Prepared - His
Defiance of the Rabid Host - Effect Upon the Wild Horde Who Were Eager
to Roast and Devour Him - Fierce Fight Among His Opponents.

PARKIN REMINISCENCE.

CHAPTER I.

Promise to Pay Money With Only Faith to Back It - How the Money was
Provided - Lesson His Wife Drew From It.

CHAPTER II.

Ashamed to Pay Tithing - Loss of Crop - Lesson He Learned By It - Potatoes
Purchased to Pay Delinquent Tithing - No Loss of Potato Crop Since.

CHAPTER III.

Farming on Shares - A New Vocation - Future Home Shown in Vision - Home
Recognized When First Seen in Utah - Reputation Gained as a Faithful and
Thorough Worker - Providential Fulfillment of Vision - Home Viewed as a
Sacred Heritage.

CHAPTER IV.

Ambitious to Work in a Goal Mine - Day Spent in Mine as a
Spectator - Fatal Accident - His Narrow Escape from Being a Victim.

CHAPTER V.

Resort to Mining - Caught in a Snowslide - Carried a Mile Down the
Mountain As If Fired From a Catapult - Miraculous Escape - Fails to Find
Companion - Return to Mine and Then Home - Companion's Subsequent Escape.

CHAPTER VI.

Father John Parkin a Pugilist - Defends a Mormon Elder - Shelters Him
From a Storm and Learns Something of Mormonism - Whole Family Embrace
the Gospel.

CHAPTER VII.

Selling a Load of Carrots to An Ex-Missionary, Whose Parsimony is
Exhibited - Some Reflections Thereon.

A SAILOR-SAINT'S ADVENTURES.

CHAPTER I.

E. R. S. Schnelle's Belief in a Providence Over His Life - Birth
and Succession of Accidents - Goes to Sea as Cabin Boy - Gruel
Treatment - Pumping Sugar and Water - Ship Crushed Against
Breakwater - Reckless Jump - Woes as a Cook.

CHAPTER II.

Embarks as Ordinary Seaman - Captain's Premonition and Sailors'
Fear - Amazone Wrecked - Dying Sailor's Vision - Grewsome Seat - a
Typhoon - Ship Seized by French - Travel in Russia - Finds A
Wife - Converted to "Mormonism."

CHAPTER III.

Sent to Hospital - Blue Jacket Converted - Warned by Spirit to Leave
Ship - Disobeys Warning - Narrow Escape When Ship Founders - A Dangerous
Fall - Led by Inspiration - Inspired Promise Fulfilled - Work in
Temple - Departure for Mission.

OBTAINING GENEALOGIES.

At Solicitation of Saints in Utah, Engages in Genealogical
Research While Serving as a Missionary - Takes a Special Mission
for Such Work - Impression That He Was Receiving Help from the
Spirit World - Search for Williams' Genealogies - A Sign and a
Mutual Impression - Valuable Data Obtained form a Stranger, Who Was
Evidently inspired - Research of Chamberlain Family Record Helped by a
Stranger Who Was Also Evidently Inspired to Do So - Valuable Records
Providentially Found in Unexpected Place.

WARNED BY THE SPIRIT.

CHAPTER I.

Chauncey W. West Sent on a Mission to Asia - Dreams of the Wreck of a
Vessel Upon Which He had Engaged Passage - Left the Ship, and Afterwards
Learned From the Grew of the Vessel Being Wrecked Just as He Had
Dreamed that it Would be - While Awaiting Another Opportunity to Ship
to California was Prompted to Vacate a House Where He and Companion
Elder Were Staying - House Immediately Afterwards Crushed by Large Stone
Rolling Down From Side of Mountain.

CHAPTER II.

Elder James Lawson Inspired to Quit a Steamboat on Which he was a
Passenger - Jumped on a Flatboat - A Few moments later the Steamboat
Sank, and most of the Passengers were Drowned.

CHAPTER III.

Comforting Assurance Experienced by A. O. Smoot During a Storm at
Sea - His Narrow Escape from being a Victim of the Saluda Disaster - His
Account of the Explosion.

CHAPTER IV.

Series of Escapes Experienced by President Woodruff Through Heeding the
Spirit's Warnings - Instance of Failing to do so.

RECALLED BY ELDER HEBER J. GRANT.

Excerpts from Discourse Delivered in the Tabernacle, Salt Lake
City, April 26,1914 - Methodist Episcopal Minister Converted to
Mormonism - Goes to England as a Mormon Missionary - Calls Upon His
Former Minister - His Undignified Reception - Anti "Mormon" Assertion
Disproved by Facts - A Minister's Confession - Puzzling Questions
Propounded to Ministers, Unanswered - Attitude of Latter-Day Saints
Thereon - Unseen Evidence of Power - A Prediction by the Gift of Tongues
that was Literally Fulfilled - Truth Only Strengthened by Attempts
to Overthrow it - Karl G. Maeser's Conversion - His Pledge and its
Fulfillment - Ben Butler's Advice.

A BUSY LIFE

CHAPTER I.

Anson Call's Birth and Character - Investigated "Mormonism" to Disprove
it, and Became Converted - Impediment in His Speech Cured When
Administered to - An Anti-"Mormon" Missourian - Buy Farms in Caldwell
County - The Prophet Visits Missouri - Advises Abandonment of Homes - Mob
Tries to Prevent their Removal - Flee by Night - Adam-Ondi-Ahman and Far
West Besieged.

CHAPTER II.

Suffering from Gold Weather - Anson Visits Elk Horn - Captured and
Ill-Treated by a Mob - Treats the Mob to Whiskey, and Escapes - Tiresome
Journey to Far West - Visits His Farm Contrary to Counsel - Finds his
Property in Possession of Mobocrats, who Assault Him - Apostates Try to
Use Anson to Discredit the Prophet - Anson's Fidelity.

CHAPTER III.

Removal to Illinois - A Perilous Journey - Overtaken by the Prophet While
Escaping from Missouri Prison - Anson and Wife Visit in Ohio - Locate
in Macedonia - Remove to Nauvoo - Mission to Ohio - Prophet's Vision and
Prediction as to Saints Locating in West - Judge Thomas' Advice - Service
as a Delegate.

CHAPTER IV.

Judge Thomas' Willingness to Sacrifice the Prophet - Vain Efforts
to See and Report to the Prophet - Perfidy of Reynolds Cahoon and
Alpheus Cutler - Prophet's Last Speech - News of the Martyrdom - Its
Effect - Atrocities of Mob.

CHAPTER V.

Preparations for Abandonment of Nauvoo - Journey Westward - Winter
Near Indian Camp - Test of Fealty - Westward Journey Temporarily
Abandoned - Employment in Missouri - Journey to Utah - Choice
of Home - Mission to Colonize Parowan - Mission to Colonize
Fillmore - Massacre of Gunnison Party.

CHAPTER VI.

Call's Fort Established - Acts as Deputy U. S. Marshal - Mission
to Colonize Carson Valley - Prepares to Burn Home - The "Move"
South - Brother Killed by Indians - Call's Landing Established - His Last
Days.

ELDER BROWN'S EXPERIENCE

Frigid Trip on Lonely Road - Team Exhausted - Agony of Freezing - Prayer
for Deliverance - Friend Inspired to Go to His Relief - Sheep Herder
Inspired to Move Camp - Effects of Freezing on Feet.

CHAPTER II.

Sent on a Mission - Stricken with Chills and Fever - President of
Mission Proffers to Release Him - Unwilling to be Released - Instantly
Healed when Administered to - Twin Boys Healed in Answer to Elder
Brown's Prayer - Elder Brown Has a Relapse - Instantly Healed when Again
Administered to - Again Urged to Accept His Release - Field of Labor
Changed - Health Fails, and He is Sent Home - Reproved by President
Woodruff - Victim of a Street Car Accident - Healed in Answer to Prayer.

REMARKABLE PATRIARCHAL BLESSING.

Dr. Gledhill's Wife Operated Upon Repeatedly for Internal
Tumor - Blessed by a Patriarch - Promised that She Should Recover and
Give Birth to More Children - Scientific Opinions Upset by Fulfillment
of Inspired Promise.

LAMBERT REMINISCENCE.

Applies for Work Upon Nauvoo Temple - Accepts Work Without Prospect of
Pay - His Hat Stoned - Offered Work by Lucifer, who Displays Abundance of
Gold - Journey Westward - Money Providentially Furnished for Completion
of Wagon - Money for Medicine Obtained in Like Mysterious Way - Arrival
in Winter Quarters - Ambition to Go West With Pioneers - Plan Foiled by
Indians Killing Team Animals - President Young's Confidence - New Shoes
Providentially Found - Dislocated Arm Providentially Restored to Use.

A TIMELY WARNING.

Visit to a Volcano - Madam Pele's Hair - Narrow Escape from Falling into
Volcano.

ONE OF NATURE'S GENTLEMEN.

Fine Specimen of Maori - Effect of the Gospel Upon Him - His Excellent
Family.

PRAYING TO DEATH.

Attempt of Hawaiian Priest to Pray Mormon Elder to Death - His Failure
and Hawaiian Discomfiture.



AMONG CANNIBALS



CHAPTER I.

JAMES S. BROWN'S EXPERIENCE PREVIOUS TO BEING SENT AS A MISSIONARY
TO THE SOCIETY ISLANDS - REMARKABLE PREDICTION BY PRESIDENTS BRIGHAM
YOUNG AND WILLARD RICHARDS - PERILOUS JOURNEY TO CALIFORNIA - TRAGIC
FATE OF MOST OF THE COMPANY - ARRIVAL IN SAN FRANCISCO - LANDING
IN TAHITI - OPPOSITION FROM PRIESTS AND MINISTERS - GOVERNOR OF
FRENCH PROTECTORATE ARRAYED AGAINST HIM - ELDERS SCATTER OUT - LEWD
WOMEN, INSTIGATED BY MINISTERS, TRY TO ENTRAP HIM - HIS FIRST
CONVERT - RECOGNIZED BY A NATIVE WHO HAD SEEN HIM IN A DREAM.

The late Elder James S. Brown, who for many years was a resident of the
17th Ward of this city, (and who died in 1902) had a most interesting
and eventful life, and a few incidents therefrom, in which a special
providence was manifest, are here given, the facts being mainly culled
from his autobiography published under the title of "Life of a Pioneer."

Elder Brown was a member of the famous Mormon Battalion, and on being
mustered out of service in California in July, 1847, he journeyed to
Sutter's Fort on the Sacramento river, and became one of the original
discoverers of gold in California. After working in California for an
outfit, he with others made a hazardous journey eastward in search of
their friends the Pioneers, who, under the leadership of Brigham Young,
had located, as they understood, somewhere in the rocky mountains, but
just where they were uncertain. He arrived in Salt Lake valley on the
28th of September, 1848, and found the pioneers living in a fort on
what is now Pioneer Square. There he was warmly welcomed by relatives
and friends and settled down to help develop the country.

In the summer of 1849 he witnessed the threatened destruction of the
whole of the crops being raised in the valley by the onslaught of
crickets, and the miraculous saving of the crops by swarms of seagulls
coming from the west and devouring the crickets.

Then he was called to go upon a mission to the Society Islands.
President Brigham Young said to him "I promise you in the name of the
Lord, God of Israel that if you go you will be blessed, and do good,
and be an honor to yourself and to the Church and Kingdom of God.
Although men will seek your life, you shall be spared and return to the
bosom of the Church in safety." President Willard Richards also said to
him "Brother James, when you are upon yonder distant islands, called
to preside over a branch of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
Saints, men will seek your life, and to all human appearance there will
be no possible escape; then look unto God, and His angels shall drawn
near unto you, and you shall be delivered to return home unto this
people."

In company with Elder Addison Pratt, who had previously filled a
mission to the Society Islands, he set out, first proceeding to
California by the southern route. They had occasion to feel that
they were providentially preserved on the journey, as, through a
disagreement as to the road they should travel, the majority of the
company (including about 500 emigrants bound for California from
somewhere in the east) and who persisted in going contrary to the
advice of Apostle Charles C. Rich, got lost and nearly all of them
perished from thirst and starvation in Death Valley. The missionaries
were content to follow the advice of Apostle Rich, and, after a
somewhat perilous journey arrived safely in San Francisco. There
they secured passage on the brig "Frederick" and sailed away to the
southwest for Tahiti April 20, 1850.

They landed at Papeete, the capital of Tahiti, the largest island of
the Society group, May 24, 1850, where they were met and welcomed by
a few natives whom Addison Pratt had converted while on a previous
mission.

They soon learned that they would have to meet the combined opposition
of Protestant ministers and Catholic priests, who were determined,
if possible, to prevent them from becoming established there. These
opponents had great influence with the representatives of the French
government that maintained a protectorate over the greater part of the
Society Islands.

They called upon the governor of the French protectorate and tried
to obtain permission to visit Tubuai, a distant island, to which
place they had a chance of obtaining free passage, but were refused
permission, as the governor expressed fear of the effect of their
preaching. He required that they furnish him a detailed statement of
the principles they taught and the methods and policy they pursued in
their missionary work, all of which, however, failed to satisfy the
governor that he could safely trust them. The governor then prepared
a list of questions for the Elders to answer and pledges for them to
subscribe to, all of which they complied with, but all to no avail,
for the governor had evidently determined not to allow them to do any
proselyting.

Elder Brown made the acquaintance of many ministers and missionaries of
other creeds, some of whom professed to have a feeling of friendship
for him and his work, but who secretly exerted all their powers and
influence to oppose him and instigate the government to curtail his
liberties and prevent the spread of the Gospel. Upon one occasion he
was visited by two very pretty young native women who were attractively
dressed and highly perfumed, and who expressed a desire to investigate
"Mormonism." He received them cordially and offered to afford them any
information he could, but was blessed with the spirit of discernment
and impressed with the fact that they were not sincere in their
profession, but had, in fact, come for the purpose of seducing him.
He surprised them by telling them of his suspicion as to the purpose
of their visit, and that certain rival ministers had induced them to
come to him, suggesting to them that Elder Brown was hypocritical in
his profession of religion, and in reality a licentious man who would
readily succumb to the cunning wiles of lewd women and, by being
caught in the trap devised by them, have his reputation blasted and
his missionary work effectually stopped by the exposure that would
follow. The women acknowledged that he had correctly discerned and
described the cause and purpose of their visit and the identity of its
instigators, and on being warned to repent and assured that "Mormon"
missionaries were not such characters as they had been led to suppose,
the women abandoned the scheme to which they had lent themselves, and
left him.

The first baptism in which Elder Brown officiated on the islands was
that of a highly educated and influential young native woman who had
become convinced of the truth of the principles he taught and applied
to him to baptize her. She was so ill that she had to be carried into
the water, but when she was baptized she was immediately healed and
walked out of the water without help. The ministers raised a great
outcry about his endangering her life by immersing her, and soon had
the police searching for him for the purpose of placing him under
arrest. The officers failed to find him, although he made no effort
to evade them, and the excitement over the baptism of the young woman
gradually subsided.

Failing to get the consent of the governor or other officials for them
to engage in missionary labor, and tiring of the restraint of remaining
in comparative idleness in the region of Papeete, the Elders decided to
scatter out and do missionary work as they might find opportunity.

While Elder Brown was on his way to Tubuai, where he was appointed
to preside, the boat upon which he was making the voyage had to put
into the harbor of the island of Laivavai to seek refuge from a storm.
He mentions that the island was only four miles in length and two in
width, and had a population of three hundred and eighty-three people.
He described them as having the wildest and fiercest look of any
that he had ever met. However, he had no cause to complain of their
treatment at the time. His next stop was on the island of Tubuai, which
is only twelve or fifteen miles in length, and had a population of four
hundred. It was upon this island that the gospel was first introduced.
That was in July, 1844, the missionaries being Addison Pratt, Noah
Rogers and B. F. Grouard, who were sent on a mission from Nauvoo by the
Prophet Joseph Smith, in 1843. Knowlton F. Hanks was also one of the
party called to fill this mission, but he died during the voyage to his
field of labor. While attempting to effect a landing, the boat had the
narrowest possible escape from being wrecked upon a coral reef. As it
was, the passengers were spilled into the raging billows among crags
and rocks, but were fortunate in escaping serious injury.

After laboring for awhile on the island of Tubuai, he proceeded to
Anaa, in the Tuamotu group. A somewhat unusual incident occured when
Elder Brown and a number of other passengers were about to land at
Tuuhora on the island of Auaa. As they neared the shore a native came
bounding through the water until he reached the stern of the boat where
Elder Brown was seated. Then he reached out his hand which had in it
five pearls wrapped in a small rag, saying at the same time: "Here, I
have seen you before. You have come to be our president, for you have
been shown to me in a dream. Welcome, welcome to our land!" He then
turned his broad, muscular back towards Elder Brown and invited the
missionary to mount and be carried ashore. The Elder gladly did so,
and notwithstanding he was an unusually large man, he was carried with
ease to the shore, where he was joyfully greeted by a goodly number of
church members who soon prepared a feast of welcome for him.



CHAPTER II.

CATHOLIC PRIESTS JEALOUS OF HIS SUCCESS - ARRESTED ON A TRUMPED-UP
CHARGE - TRIED BEFORE GOVERNOR'S AID-DE-CAMP - FRIGHTFUL SCENE AMONG
A SCHOOL OF WHALES - FARCE OF A TRIAL BEFORE THE GOVERNOR OF THE
PROTECTORATE - INSPIRED TO PLEAD HIS OWN CAUSE - IMPRESSION MADE
UPON THE GOVERNOR - AMERICAN CONSUL'S FRIENDLY ACT - BANISHED FROM
TAHITI - BEFRIENDED BY A QUEEN.

The natives were eager for the Gospel, and he lost no time in
commencing the work of proselyting among them. He also engaged in
conducting day schools among the natives with good effect, the natives
being anxious to attend and quick to learn. The Catholic priests of the
region, however, who were making almost frantic efforts to proselyte
as well as to establish schools in imitation of those of Elder Brown,
were so jealous of his success and so chagrined at their own failure,
that they set about devising schemes to discredit Elder Brown and
gain an advantage over him. They even went to the extreme of taking
forcible possession of a meeting house built and exclusively owned
by the Latter-day Saints, and trying to monopolize the use of it.
They presumed upon their influence with the officers of the French
protectorate to sustain them in this arbitrary and high-handed conduct,
and continued it even in the face of a decision against them, when the
officers could find no warrant even in the rank anti-"Mormon" prejudice
then prevailing for favoring the priests, much as they desired to do so.

While at Putuhara, on the island of Anaa, Elder Brown was arrested
on a trumped-up charge and haled before the governor's aid-de camp,
who had arrived on the French war frigate "Durance." It was soon
evident that the Catholic priests had conspired to entrap him for the
purpose of breaking down his influence with the natives and closing
his schools. When the charges, which were both frivolous and absurd,
were read to him he plead not guilty and asked the privilege of being
tried in the vicinity, where he felt sure he could soon establish his
innocence. This privilege was refused on the plea that his offense
was too great and he was too dangerous to be tried before any less
personage than the governor. He would therefore have to go to Tahiti
and appear before the governor. After being compelled to witness the
most shameless and revolting immorality on the part of the guard who
had him in charge he was thrust into a filthy and foul smelling old
oil boat and thus conveyed to the war frigate, which was lying off
shore, there being no harbor or anchorage at that island. While the
boat was proceeding to the frigate it ran into a school of whales that
numbered hundreds if not thousands. The native oarsmen propelling the
boat were almost paralyzed with fear, and withdrew their oars and
scarcely dared to breath while the whales were passing. Elder Brown
in relating the circumstance admitted that although he had been in a
great many dangerous places he had never felt the hair on his head so
much inclined to stand on end before as while witnessing the passing of
those huge sea monsters, so close as to be touched with the hand, and
having the power if they had chosen to exert it, to smash the boat and
send its passengers into eternity by a mere whisk of the tail.


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