Photograph Showcase: Blanche & Montice, Sisters

HUBAND, Blanche & Montice, about 1899

Blanche Octavia Huband & Montice Cheney Huband, about 1900

Blanche Octavia Huband is my great-grandmother.  Montice Cheney Huband is her younger sister.  Blanche was born 21 May 1895 and Montice was born 7 December 1897.  They are the daughters of Hattie Margaret Cheney & Heber Albert Huband.

While this photo is undated, it was likely taken in about 1900.  Blanche is so clear in this photo, while Montice is slightly blurred.  I imagine it was hard for such a young girl to hold still enough to be in perfect focus.

Hattie & Heber were the parents of eight children:

  • Lola Huband, born 21 August 1890
  • Nina Huband, born 27 April 1893
  • Blanche Octavia Huband, born 21 May 1895
  • Montice Cheney Huband, born 7 December 1897
  • Edwin Perry Huband, born 29 October 1900
  • Lane Augustus Huband, born 16 December 1903
  • Gene Ann Huband, born 30 November 1908
  • Grant Cheney Huband, born 18 May 1911

At the time this lovely photo of Blanche & Montice was taken, they were the only living children.  Sadly four of Hattie & Heber’s children would die as young children:

  • Lola, died 27 July 1894
  • Nina, died 2 August 1894
  • Montice, died 6 November 1900
  • Edwin, died 11 March 1907

I have not seen a photo of Lola or Nina.  I don’t know if one exists.

As much as I love the photo of Blanche & Montice, I feel terribly, terribly sad when I look at it.  How must it have been for Hattie & Heber to bury four of their precious children at such young ages?  However, I’m glad this photo exists.  It is the only known photo of Montice.

HUBAND, Blanche & Montice, about 1899, back

This is the back of the photo.  I do not recognize the handwriting in blue ink at the top.  Could it be Hattie’s?  It doesn’t appear to be Blanche’s handwriting.  The notes in black ink were written by my Grandma, Mary Margaret Ellis, Blanche’s daughter.




Happy Thursday, do you happen to have a precious “only” photo of one of your relatives?  Have you scanned and shared it?  If not, I hope you will today!  xoxo




Photograph Showcase: Edwin Perry Huband, our brother


Edwin Perry Huband

Edwin Perry Huband is my great-granduncle.  He is the son of my 2nd great-grandparents Heber Albert Huband & Hattie Margaret Cheney.  He was born 29 October 1900 in Shelly, Bingham, Idaho.  A very short, six years, ten months, and four days later, he died of appendicitis on 11 March 1907 in Logan, Cache, Utah.

The back of the photo reads: “Edwin Huband our Brother” written by an unknown writer, although it is likely that Blanche Octavia Huband may have written it; and “born Oct 29, 1900 died March 11, 1907” written by Blanche’s daughter, and my Grandmother, Mary Margaret Ellis.

Until last week, I did not know there were any photos of Edwin.  I found this precious little picture in a folder created by my Grandma that she labeled, “Huband”.  The photo is a copy of the original.  The original must have been quite damaged.  I cleaned the scan up a bit but you can see that it must have torn or experienced a severe stain of some kind.

I was very happy to see that I had already taken a photo of Edwin’s headstone and shared it on FindAGrave.

HUBAND, Edwin Perry, headstone

Headstone of Edwin Perry Huband in the Logan City Cemetery.



Happy Thursday, I hope you come across a photo of someone in your family for whom you did not know a photo existed very, very soon!  xoxo




Photograph Showcase: Grandmother Folkman

THOMASEN, Maren with the Shurtliffs

l-r: Haskill Heber Shurtliff, possibly Wilford Haskill Shurtliff, Annie Christine Folkman, Maren Katrine Thomasen

Maren Katrine Thomasen is my 3rd great-grandmother.  Here she is with her oldest daughter, Annie Christine Folkman, and Annie’s husband Haskill Heber Shurtliff, and their child.  Annie and Haskill’s oldest child was Wilford Haskill Shurtliff, born in 1886.  Maren was about 50 when Wilford was born.  It seems likely that the child in this photo is Wilford.

Maren was born in Denmark in 1837.  She joined the LDS church in Denmark in about 1862 and emigrated about two years later arriving in Utah in 1864.  She married Jens Peter Folkman the following year as his second wife.  Together, they had four children: Annie Christine Folkman, Josephine Christiana Folkman, Joseph Moroni Folkman, and Jane Zina Petrina Folkman – who went by Petrina.  Petrina is my 2nd great-grandmother.

The really exciting thing about this photograph is that it is only the second photograph I have ever seen of Maren!  On FamilySearch, there are only two photos of Maren.  I have not found any other photos so far online or elsewhere.  What a treasure!



Happy Thursday, I hope you find a way to preserve and share a precious photo today!  xoxo




Treasures: A Pioneer Letter

Today is a very loved holiday in the state of Utah – the 24th of July.  It’s the day we celebrate the first Mormon Pioneers arriving in the Salt Lake Valley on 24 July 1847.  After years of persecution and being driven from place to place, those pioneers finally fled Nauvoo and began the difficult journey to Utah.  Some traveled by ox cart, many walked alongside the wagons, others traveled by handcart which meant a lot of walking, and a very small group of Saints traveled on the Ship Brooklyn sailing from New York, around Cape Horn, and arriving in Yerba Buena, California six months later.  My own ancestors were among each of those groups.

In honor of my pioneer ancestors, on this 24th of July, I have a special treasure to share.  I just discovered this gem last week while going through some more of my Grandma’s collection.

Pictured above you can see my 4th great-grandfather, Julius Augustus Caesar Austin, then the headstone for his wife, my 4th great-grandmother Octavia Ann Lane, and then their daughter, Louise Maria Austin, my 3rd great-grandmother.  In my searching, so far I have not found any photos of Octavia.

In 1846, Julius, Octavia, and their three surviving children, Louise – age 7, Edwin – age 5, and Newton – age 2, all began their journey to Utah on the Ship Brooklyn.  I’ve known that was the case for many years, but discovering this transcription of a letter written by Octavia during that journey was such a cool find.  The transcription was completed by Julius and Octavia’s granddaughter, Louise Delina Cheney in 1934.  What a treasure!

img044 - smaller


“Copy of

Photostat of a letter written by grand mother Austin to her parents while on Ship Brooklyn.

Honolula, Oahu

June 29 – 1846

Dear Parents and Brothers & Sisters

I take this time to write a few lines, but one sheet of paper to communicate one’s thots  If you knew my feelings for your eternal happiness.  I want you to come where we are to live – and die with the Saints of God.

Give my love to Sister King and enquering friends.  One thing more we met some. relatives on board Brother Nathan Burr married Chloe Clarke, grandchild of Thomas Pratt grandmother’s brother; she was acquainted with Aunt Stocking, has been to Uncle Stannard’s house   they are first rate folks, she looks some like your mother

Julius sends love

Octavia A. Austin.

To you all.


Copied at Genealogical Office From Mss.  Oct 15 – 1934 by Delina Willis.  There is also copy of another letter written by grandmother dated 29 Sept 1846″


The details about Chloe Clarke, Thomas Pratt, and Aunt Stocking have got me curious.  This is a line I haven’t spent any time on.  I’ve got to see where these clues lead me!  Also, Aunt Stocking?  I love that name.

I was also curious to see if the original letter was viewable on the LDS Church History Library website.  The image is not, but I discovered that this note from Octavia was a postscript to a letter written by her sister, Emeline Lane, as seen here.  Emeline wrote an additional letter that is also held there, as seen here.  I can’t see any trace of the letter Delina mentions from 29 September 1846.  That letter must be in a private collection, or in another department.  I have some digging to do!  AND, I think a trip to Salt Lake is in order to view the two Emeline letters.  I can’t wait to see Octavia’s handwriting!!  I better make a list of other treasures in the Church History Library about my family.  I found that at least one letter written by Emeline is included in the book Scoundrel’s Tale: The Samuel Brannan Papers by, Will Bagley.  I ordered a copy.


Happy 24th of July!  It’s a day that honors Mormon Pioneers and their sacrifices so that LDS church members would be able to live what they believed in peace and safety.  I am thankful for them, so many of whom reside in my very own tree.



Ellis Album, Photo 50 – Claude LeRoy Cheney

CHENEY, Claude LeRoy

Claude LeRoy Cheney

Claude is my 2nd great-granduncle.  He is the son of my 3rd great-grandparents, Joseph Thompson Cheney & Louise Maria Austin.  Before seeing this photo, I did not know anything about Claude aside from a few scant details that lived in my tree.  After editing this photo and uploading it to FamilySearch I spent some time updating my Ancestry tree and looking at the memories and facts found on FamilySearch about Claude.

Two and a half years before his death, Claude wrote a personal history.  Reading that history broke my heart.  Claude married Ethel Lavina Weir when he was 35.  They had three children together.  Unfortunately, this first marriage fell victim to the Great Depression.  Claude bounced around the US for many, many years trying to secure a job.  At the age of 63, he married again.  He and Mary enjoyed twenty-one years together before her death in 1967.  Less than one month later, Claude also passed.

I am grateful that this beautiful portrait was part of my great-grandmother’s album.  Because of this portrait, I spent a little time learning about Uncle Claude.  I hope this photo will be found and enjoyed by some of his descendants.



You can read more about Claude’s life here.


This photo comes from the twenty-sixth page of the album.  Here are pages twenty-six and twenty-seven to give context for this photo:


This post is part of a series sharing this wonderful old family photo album.  You can learn more about the album here.



Dear cousin, Nancy – I get every single comment you leave.  I always comment back.  Are you seeing those?  As for my email address on the sidebar – it is written strangely to help prevent spam for me. Replace the {at} with the normal @ and replace the {dot} with a normal period – .  I hope that helps! Would love to hear from you. ❤




Ellis Album, Photo 49 – Four Cheney Sisters

CHENEY, four sisters

Back, l-r:  Louise Delina Cheney, Blanche Lenore Cheney.  Front, l-r:  Hattie Margaret Cheney, Della Maude Cheney.

This photo is one I am very familiar with.  There is a copy in my Dad’s book of remembrance.  I looked through that book so many times growing up, often at the side of my Grandmother who had created it.  Even though the photo was familiar, the women were not.  It was much later in life that I understood the significance of this photo.

The woman at the bottom left is my 2nd great-grandmother, Hattie Margaret Cheney.  Hattie is the daughter of Joseph Thompson Cheney and Louise Maria Austin.  Hattie was born in Paris, Bear Lake, Idaho on 9 July 1866.  She was the third of eight children.  She had four sisters and three brothers.

Here she is seen with three of her sisters – Louise Delina (who went by Delina), Blanche Lenore, and Della Maude. At the time this photo would have been taken, the fifth sister, Octavia Achsa, was no longer living.  Hattie would go on to name her own daughter Blanche Octavia – who was my great-grandmother and the creator of this wonderful photo album.  Della was the only sibling who never married or had any children.

What a treasure to have a photo of these four elderly sisters together!  What makes it even more remarkable is that the four sisters lived in three different states – Idaho, Utah, and California.  I wonder what event brought them together?  I wonder whose idea it was to have this photograph taken?  I would like to thank them.  😉



This photo comes from the twenty-sixth page of the album.  Here are pages twenty-six and twenty-seven to give context for this photo:


This post is part of a series sharing this wonderful old family photo album.  You can learn more about the album here.  Pages seventeen through twenty-five were filled with twenty-two wonderful photos that all contained at least one living person.  Descendants of Paul & Claudia Nye – email me if you would like files of those photos.  My address is on the sidebar.




Photograph Showcase: Thomas & Lettie Peterson

Thomas William Peterson & Lettie Taylor are my 2nd great-grandparents.  They were both born in Utah, Thomas in 1872 and Lettie in 1883.  They married in 1901 in Salt Lake and went on to have four sons.  I descend from their son Rulon.

I love the details of their clothing in these photos.  They aren’t dated so I can’t be certain of the occasion on which they were both taken.  But that white tie definitely screams special event.  What do you think?

I do know that these were not taken at the time of their wedding.  I have a photo from that day and Thomas is sans mustache.

Thomas William Peterson

Thomas William Peterson & Lettie Taylor on their wedding day, 10 April 1901.

I think they look older in the first two photos.  What do you think?



Happy Thursday, I hope you make a fantastic photo discovery very soon!  If not, I hope you will preserve and share a favorite photo.  xoxo