Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Time Travel Tuesdays~A New Country, Nursing School, Sorrow & Joy~Annie Dean Part 3

It was July 1907.  Annie Dean is 23 years old and had just emigrated to the United States from England.
HMS Republic ~White Star Line

America seemed so wonderful to me. I felt such freedom, I felt as though I had been born here. Everything was so familiar to me with one exception and that was the money. I had to trust people to take the right amount and give me the right change.

After I "worked back" my immigration money, I tried to learn to demonstrate cosmetics in a drug store. I didn't like it too well so I went to work for Judge Williams as a housekeeper. From there, I went to Provo to work for the Pierponts. I became desirous of learning something besides housework. I went to work as a night attendant in an insane asylum for two years. During the two years, I saved enough money to enter Nurses Training School. After graduation, I practiced nursing until the time of my marriage to Walter H. Corbett.

We moved to Blackfoot, Idaho. While there, We lost our first child, a girl. She died in birth. Being very ill, I went to Provo for a two months' rest, staying with Mrs. Corbett. My husband's first wife had lost her life on the Titanic after going to England to train to be a midwife. She had "hired on" as a stewardess on the ship. Walter Corbett used the insurance money to learn the insurance business. He worked for the Beneficial Life Insurance Co. in Blackfoot. We had an awfully hard time to make ends meet so we returned to Provo.

Six week later I gave birth to twin girls, Dora and Lora. It was Thanksgiving Day, November 30, 1916. My husband died from cancer of the aorta when the twins were just two months old. After the funeral expenses were paid, there wasn't much money left and I was still ill from the twins birth so (I) went to stay with some friends in Springville. They were English people named Boyer. When I regained my health, I moved back to Provo and worked as the School Nurse.

John Cummard and his wife, Eva, came up to Conference from Mesa and came to see me. They were another family from England. They asked me to work for them while they were on vacation in Long Beach, California. I worked for my "board and room" - "no pay". When they returned to their home in Mesa, I went with them. On arrival I hired a girl to work for (the) Cummards and I took in private nursing cases.

The Southside District Hospital opened and I worked as a head nurse. I soon quit because I didn't like the way they ran it. I opened a maternity home and Jetta Pomeroy, another practical nurse, came to help me.

I met my second husband, George Franklin Ellsworth, Jr. while helping care for his wife during her illness with a kidney condition. After his wife died, he began to "court" me. The Maricopa Stake was giving a party for the Saints who had done things for the Elders in the field. This was our first date. After three months of courtship, we married in Phoenix, Arizona, then went to the St. George Temple. Our wedding date was September 22, 1920.

This is where Annie's written account ends. I have gone back over my grandfather's story, which is much more detailed and covers all of their time together, to make a timeline of Annie's life after 1920. I'l share that next time.

I have in my possession only a few photos of Annie during these years. They are as follows:

I don't know when this portrait was taken. She appears younger than when she met and married my grandfather, but older that the other portrait I included at the beginning of Part One.
 Isn't she so lovely?

This is an invitation to a celebration in her honor upon 
graduation from Nurse's Training at Provo General Hospital.
I could find no photos of this hospital, only that it opened in 1905.
I have also never seen the portrait of Annie on this invitation 
anywhere but on the invitaiton!
It's really a lovely one!

This must have been from her graduation day. 
Notice the three floral arrangements she has beside her. She is nearly 30 years old here.

The party was at Provo's Hotel Roberts. It stood at 200 S. & University Avenue.
This is what the Hotel Roberts looked like originally.
On a Side note... 
After 1926 , and several renovations, the hotel  ended up looking like this.
I include this picture because The Hotel Roberts was my brother Dean's home for quite awhile during his mission. (He is named Arthur Dean after Annie's father by the way!) Dean was called to Argentina and checked into Provo's Language Training Mission or LTM in August of 1967. After six weeks (I think) he was supposed to leave for Buenos Aries. His and several other Elder's Visas did not come through so they had to check out of the LTM to make room for other incoming missionaries. 
The Church put them up in the Hotel Roberts for several long  & boring months. Sadly, the Hotel fell into disrepair and was torn down in 2004. The lot will now house the visitor's center for the new Provo City Center Temple!

  I know of no picture of Annie with her first husband Walter Harris Corbett. 
Here she is with her twin daughters, Lora Dean & Dora Dean Corbett.
I love this picture! Annie had been through such sadness in the months before this
 but I see a look of courage and resolve in her eyes.

 I found record of her first child whom she only calls "a girl" in her story, on Familysearch.org, as being named Mary Corbett, born and died on Nov. 15, 1915. She is buried in Blackfoot, Idaho. The birth of these twins just a year later must have been such a joyous thing for Annie and Walter. That joy was short-lived when Walter passed away just a few months later Feb. 4, 1917. It is a strange thing, the subject of his death. The Provo newspaper that carried his obituary says he passed away from "dropsy" which is a swelling or edema in the tissues and organs. This could be cardio-pulmonary edema or fluid in and around the heart and lungs. Annie says he died from cancer of the aorta. A news article in which Walter's grandson was interviewed in 2012 (for the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic upon which Walter's first wife Irene Colvin Corbett died) states,

Irene's children -- Walter, 5, Roene, 3, and Mack, 22 months -- were left motherless. Custody of the children was granted to Irene's parents. Their father, Walter, Irene's husband -- who Don Corbett described as a "kind, gentle man" -- was in a mining accident four years later and died from surgical complications."

 Interesting. Why so many different stories? This article also answered a question I had. Did Annie care for Walter's first three children? Did they go to Blackfoot with Walter and Annie? No. Somehow, for some reason, Irene's parents were given custody of the children two years before Annie and Walter met. Was he so distraught that he could not care for them? It makes me sad to think that those three little children lost both their mother and their father within 5 years of each other. My Aunts Dora and Lora have three half-siblings. Does anyone in the Hunsaker or Steverson family know if they ever had any contact? I do know that my grandfather took Annie and the children back to Utah so that Dora and Lora could visit Walter's family. His father had passed away in 1912 but his mother Mary Emily Harris Corbett was still alive until 1947.
I include the following pictures not because I am related to Walter H. Corbett, but many of my cousins are.
Isn't his mother a pretty lady? His father is quite handsome too!  It is Mary Emily Corbett who took care of Annie after she lost baby Mary at birth.
Walter Sutton Corbett & Mary Emily Harris Corbett with son Walter Harris Corbett
Provo, Utah 1887
All of my life I had known about Walter H. Corbett but I had never seen a photo of him until a few years ago when the 100th Anniversary of the Titanic sinking brought his and Irene's story into the local Provo news. When I first saw this photo I gasped! My Aunt Lora has several sons and daughters whose resemblance to Walter is astonishing! I always wondered who they looked like!

       Irene Colvin Corbett                                 Walter 5, Kady Roene 3, and Mack 22  mos.

Below are John and Eva Cummard. They are the friends of Annie's who took her and the twins to Long Beach, California for a vacation after the death of Walter. She in turn helped them care for their children Jack & Zena while there. This trip offered Annie a much needed chance to rest from the worries of providing for herself and the girls as well as a chance to heal physically and emotionally from all that had happened to her in the last year. I did a little research and have reasoned that Annie knew the Cummards from her time spent working at the LDS Mission Home in Liverpool before she came to America. The Cummards were actually from Liverpool and joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1907 just as Annie had.
This is how Annie came to live in Mesa, Arizona as well. The Cummards invited her to come to Mesa with them when their extended California trip was done. They remained friends all of their lives. I remember my father speaking of them often. Mr. Cummard sold insurance and was also on the Mesa Temple site selection committee. He served in the Maricopa Stake Presidency at that time with Pres. James Lesueur. I copied the following from the website for the Temple Historic District in Mesa: 
"John Cummard was a relative latecomer to Mesa. He arrived in the United States form Liverpool in 1908 as an LDS convert. He moved to Mesa in 1912 where he obtained his US citizenship in 1918. Cummard was president of the Maricopa Stake for 19 years. He served on the Arizona Corporation Commission from 1933 to 1935, and as state examiner from 1939 to 1941. He was also a charter member of the Rotary Club and chairman of the Mesa Red Cross. Beyond finding time for these church and community activities, Cummard was in the real estate and insurance business."

He and Eva owned a home on North Robson Street I am guessing Annie stayed with them for awhile until she hired the new girl and started working as a nurse.
 I love Robson St. and all of the old bungalows in that area.
 It's fun to picture her out on the covered front porch watching her twins grow.
John and Eva Cummard.
  1. Below-Eva in front of the home on N. Robson St.

 I found a few photos taken at Long Beach, California during that time period. This is what they saw when the went to the beach.
 I would love to know if Annie was brave enough to go on that crazy corkscrew ride.

I don't know...would you have ridden that ride?

Next time I will share that timeline showing the rest of Annie's life. Grandpa Ellsworth was very detailed in his life story and fills in the big blank left when Grandma didn't write past the time she met him.

I hope you are enjoying these posts as much as I have loved doing the research and finding out what I can to fill in the blanks. Let me hear from you if you know of anything I have left out.


Dean said...

Marianne, I was named after Annie's older brother Arthur Dean. The Hotel Roberts was an overflow for the Language Training Mission. All older groups moved out for younger ones. We did stay almost two months waiting for our visas and spent Thanksgiving in the hotel in 1967.

Polly Aird said...

I have a photo of the Provo General Hospital if you want to write to me--it was started by my grandfather, Dr. John W. Aird.
Polly Aird