I called a friend one day and her daughter answered the phone. She called out to her mom, it’s one of your duppy friends. What is a duppy? Actually, DUP is the real acronym for Daughters of the Utah Pioneers. Yes, I belong – I have 18 pioneers who crossed the plains – now some were children and I count each husband and wife because sometimes they separated or lived longer. There were some that remarried, there were some who became polygamists and some who refused.
One lady in our DUP meeting today even took a black shirt and added in giant foot long letters made out of rhinestones “DUP”. Now that is dedication. We learned about flax making and silk worms in which the pioneers made their own linens and silk. It was quite a process – some women even wore the silkworm eggs in a pouch around their necks to protect them from the up and down spikes of temperatures. Pioneer women wore their precious needle. Sometimes they wore a jewelry case which carried their needle or they always had their needle on them so that it was never lost.
There was a man who worked his horses during the week but decided that on Sunday that they needed rest so he walked to church. His wife, however, hitched up the buggy and drove by him on her way to church. They sat in the church on opposite sides of the church. He walked home and she drove herself home. I bet Sunday was not a pleasant day in their household.
One woman who had had 11 children was told by her husband that he was going to take an 18 year old wife. His first wife said, “if she walks in the front door, I will leave by the back door” and he did and she did. He eventually moved away with his 18 year old wife and his older wife stayed in their original home. A pioneer divorce.
Eunice Miner was born in 1783 at Shelbourne, Massachusetts; had 10 children in New York, moved to Ohio when they joined the Mormons and then to Iowa when her husband Andrew Allen got a land grant from being in the War of 1812. He stayed in Iowa and she left him and went to Utah with her children. She died in 1866 In Bountiful, Utah. Her husband remarried to a younger widow and had another child. Another pioneer divorce.