James Dalley’s wife Petrine (Thrine) Bertlesen was born in 1840 in Viborg, Denmark. When she was 19 years of age, Petrina was selected to go to America with an emigrating family. She made hasty preparations, bidding her parents and sisters goodbye. A steamer carried her to Liverpool, England, and here she boarded the sailing vessel “Wm. Tappscott.”
The ship was seven weeks on the ocean, and Thrine, as well as many others of those on board, were seasick most of the time. The only food she was able to retain in her stomach was a bowl of chicken soup given to her by the kind sea captain. She developed a strong aversion to the taste of small oranges, which many of the passengers were eating, only to vomit them up.
The company arrived in Salt Lake City in 1860. Thrine, who could scarcely speak enough English to make herself understood, had no place to go from the camping grounds. She was taken, finally, to the home of Franklin D. Richards and was made welcome and comfortable until her brother, Lars, arrived two days later. At the time her sister, Lette, who had preceded her to Zion by six years, and was the wife of James Dalley, came to see her and persuaded her to go with her to Summit. Soon she was married to James Dalley as his third wife.
For a number of years, her “castle” consisted of one log room about 14 feet square of hewn logs put together with wooden pegs instead of nails. She reared ten children to adulthood, all of whom married and reared families of fine, intelligent children of their own.
After James died at 72, she married John A. Beecroft. She confided to a family member some time after her marriage, "Nelse, you don't know how good it seems to have a man of your own." She died January 31, 1914 in Summit, at the age of 73.
Petrine History from Find A Grave
The William Tapscott built in 1852, carried Charles William MANN across the Atlantic from England in 1859 While on this voyage he married Livina Ann Smith. Photograph by Permission of the Peabody Essex Museum, East India Square, Salem, MA 01970
The William Tapscott was one of the largest full-rigged ships built in Maine during the 1850s. She was a typical "Down Easter"-sturdy, moneymaking, moderately sparred, and designed for carrying capacity. She was a three-decker with a square stern and billethead. Among her owners, including her namesake, were such well-known mariners as William Drummond, Gilbert C. Trufant, and George B. Cornish. She hailed from New York. After plying the oceans for about forty years the William Tapscott was lost in the English Channel in the early 1890s.
The William Tapscott: 1525 tons: 195’ x 41’ x 21’
Built: 1852 by William Drommond at Bath, Maine
The above from Conway B. Sonne.
Ships, Saints, and Mariners: A Maritime Encyclopedia of Mormon Migration 1830-1890 (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1983) pp. 198-199.
1860 June 16 New York Passenger:
1880 census Thrine Dalley
1880 census in printed form:
1910 census Thrine Dalley
1911 Iron County record Nov 3, Thrine Dalley
1912 Thrine's second marriage:
1913 Iron County Recorder December 5 Thrine sick
Photo from Ancestry:
Thrine's home in Summit, UT (according to her ganddaughter Hope Hulet):
Note on home from Hope Hulet:
Thrine in front of a home in Summit: (can you pick her out? )
Thrine's death certificate:
Threne B Dalley Aug 31, 1840 - Jan 31 1914 "I know that my Redeemer lives." (Faith in Every Footstep Pioneer Sticker.)
Who fed me from her gentle breast
And hushed me in her arms to rest,
And on my cheek sweet kisses prest?
When sleep forsook my open eyes,
Who was it sang sweet lullabies,
And rocked me that I should not cry?
Who sat and watched my infant head
When sleeping in my cradle bed,
And tears of sweet affection shed?
When pain and sickness made me cry,
Who gazed upon my heavy eye
And wept for fear that I should die?
Who ran to help me when I fell
And would some pretty story tell,
Or kiss the part to make it well?
Who taught my infant lips to pray,
To love God's holy word and day,
And walk in wisdom's pleasant way?
And can I ever cease to be
Affectionate and kind to thee
Who wast so very kind to me?
Oh no, the thought I cannot bear;
And if God please my life to spare
I hope I shall reward thy care,
When thou art feeble, old and gray,
My healthy arm shall be thy stay,
And I will soothe thy pains away
And when I see thee hang thy head,
Twill be my turn to watch thy bed,
And tears of sweet affection shed,
As Lette was the “Rock of Gibraltar” for the Dalleys of Summit, Petrina was the softening and educating influence for this remarkable family. Destined to be one of the Bertelsens who would travel alone over sea and dusty soil to reach the promise of the wilderness, this gentle, soft‑spoken girl was to exhibit a strength of character throughout her lifetime that would put to shame many of tougher fibre.
Thrine's journey was perhaps not fraught with the same excitement that had been Lette's, for Lette had been the first to come; her's was the breaking of a trail. Nor, certainly, did she suffer the misgivings of ten‑year‑old Lena Marie, who had come alone and unwillingly. Thrine was 20, mature, and had looked forward to a reunion with her brother and sisters who were already established in a Zion that in 1860 was on a somewhat sounder footing than it had been for either Lette, Lars or Lena Marie. And so, although modest almost to the point of shyness, Thrine, upon her arrival, could begin weaving the threads of her new life with reasonable security.
Like others of her family, Petrina had known only hard work and sacrifice from the beginning of her life. Yet, in spite of this, or perhaps even because of it, she developed traits of patience, understanding and helpfulness through the years that left indelible threads quietly but very well.
And into the cauldron of ingredients that were called for in the building of a hard and barren land — alongside the industry and earthy brawn of James; the patience and perseverance of Emma; the strength and capability of Lette — Thrine was to add the leavening agents of gentleness, warmth, and love of knowledge, to complete a powerful mixture in the settling of any land.
Louise B. Pearce
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Not only has it been a very great pleasure to compile the history of Petrina Bertelsen Dalley, it has also been comparatively easy, thanks to the efforts of three of her children who, with wisdom and affection, recorded her interesting and wonderful story.
The first was written by Threna Amelia Dalley Green, and later added to by Susannah Dalley Armstrong. This fine history comprises the bulk of the material presented. In most places it has been copied verbatim; some parts have been edited slightly, either to avoid repetition of material in the other stories that have already appeared, or in the interest of brevity. Parley Dalley's delightful additions have been interspersed where they best fitted the continuity of the story. I hope the resultant compilation will please her descendants. I cannot but add that it has been a warm and very pleasant experience to work with Parley in its preparation.
The Bertelsen family owes a great deal to Susannah May Grua, who, as historian of the Dalley family, provided us with the story of Thrine as well as the autobiography of Lette. Without her genuine and loving interest in history as well as her family, these two priceless stories may never have come to our attention.
Louise B. Pearce
“Mother was christened ‘Petrina’ according to records of the Lutheran Church in Denmark. It was years after she had passed away before I learned that Petrina was her name. To her family, friends and acquaintances she was known as ‘Thrine;' to many she was known as ‘Aunt Thrine.' To me, as a child, she was ‘Mama,' never just ‘Ma.' Later, it was ‘Mother' with all that the name implies. The living embodiment of love, kindness and devotion, her life was one of self‑sacrificing service to her family, friends, community and church.”
Thus wrote Parley Dalley, youngest child of James and Petrina Bertelsen Dalley, in his charming paper entitled “Memories of Mother.”
Petrina Bertelsen was born August 31, 1840, near Staarup, Viborg, Denmark, in a rented but pretty white cottage that had become very dear to her parents, brother and sisters. Her father, Niels, was a fisherman. From the sale of his “catch” he obtained the food and clothing for his large family of one son and nine daughters, of whom Petrina was the fifth. The mother, Maren Larsen Dam, although raised in a very strict and exacting manner, had been somewhat more materially privileged than many of the neighborhood, and was slated by her parents to marry a man of wealth. But fate, or whatever it is called, decided otherwise, as she married a poor fisherman and was disinherited.
Petrina was a person of quiet composure. She loved her parents devotedly, and was always on hand to do anything in her power to lighten the burden of their daily tasks. Life had always been hard and exacting for her father: using the nets with which to catch the fish; spending many long hours in his boat setting the nets; hauling them in when full and then hauling the fish to market, had left little time for leisure. Petrina learned to help him make and mend the large nets that were the tools of his trade.
She was sent to the public school at the age of seven, and became an ardent student. Very interested in books, she learned the letters of the alphabet and the spelling of several small words in three days' time. Unhappily, her attendance at school was to be short‑lived, for in the epoch‑making year of 1852, her parents heard and accepted the gospel of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter‑day Saints, and the ensuing criticism and opposition throughout the community — the ridicule and teasing in the school attended by Petrina and two older sisters, resulted in their being withdrawn.
Before this change in their lives, the Bertelsen family had had many friends — had been stalwarts in their community. But soon afterward, many of these erstwhile “friends” became bitter and relentless enemies — enemies that eventually succeeded in getting them expelled from the beloved white cottage.
Petrina had become an employee in Staarup at the age of fourteen. Her wages for the first year were ten dollars in addition to board and clothes. Although her employer ridiculed her for doing so, she never failed to pay her tithing out of that amount. Yet the man liked her, and to his bed of illness, where he had lain for seven years, he often called the young girl, with a request that she sing for him. One day sh.e innocently sang an L.D.S. hymn, “We Are the True Born Sons of Zion,” and this so enraged the patient he never again asked her to sing. But this couple, who had no children, loved Petrina, and asked her to stay with them and be treated as their own. Had not Maren so instilled in her daughter the principles of the new‑found faith that she would let nothing prevent her from going to Zion, it is probable that the girl's life would have been vastly different.
Although her employers had not treated the elders with kindness, or allowed them in the house, Thrine had managed to attend most of the meetings, and at. one of them had been baptized into the Church. After three years, Thrine left this home, and went to live with a family named Thorn, near the city of Aalborg, for by now the Bertelsens had become disheartened and disillusioned over the attitude of a large proportion of the people in Staarup, and decided to move closer to the church branch in that great northern city. Here, they hoped to find not only better treatment, but better work opportunities, for all must now work very hard to prepare for their emigration to America and Utah. In the home of the Thorns, Thrine was to receive much training that would prepare her for life in Utah, for a year after her arrival Mrs. Thorn died, leaving three small children in her care for a year and a half.
FAREWELL TO DANISH SHORES
In the spring of 1860, when she was 19 years of age, Petrina was selected to go to America with an emigrating family. She made hasty preparations, bidding her parents and sisters goodbye on the 5th of May. A steamer carried her to Liverpool, England, and here she boarded the sailing vessel “Wm. Tappscott,” her destination, Zion. Sailing on May 11th, the ship was seven weeks on the ocean, and Thrine, as well as many others of those on board, was seasick most of the time. The only food she was able to retain on her stomach was a bowl of chicken soup given her by the kind sea captain. She developed at this time a strong aversion to the taste of small oranges, which many of the passengers were eating, only to vomit them up. These physical disabilities did not, however, prevent the young emigrant from mothering five small children whose mother had died the first week of the voyage.
The sea‑weary travelers were overjoyed to see the trees of New York, only to be keenly disappointed upon learning that smallpox had broken out on board and they would have to remain for a time on the ship. Those who were stricken with the dread disease, including one of the little girls Petrina had been caring for, were taken to New York, there to be placed in quarantine. Although all on board had been exposed, no other cases developed, and after two weeks they were permitted to land.
The journey of three months across the plains, although long and tedious, was far more pleasant for Thrine than it had been for many, for she paid her way by caring for motherless children, and Joseph Young, captain of the company, was very kind and considerate to his charges. No serious Indian trouble occurred on the journey. Several colorful bands crossed their path, but were friendly.
The company arrived in Salt Lake City on the 5th of October, 1860. Petrina, who could scarcely speak enough English to make herself understood, had no place to go from the camping grounds. She was taken, finally, to the home of Franklin D. Richards and made welcome and comfortable until her brother, Lars, arrived two days later. With him she went to Ephraim, Sanpete County, to remain there that winter in the employ of a Brother Christian's family. She also worked for the Reuben Waters family in Mt. Pleasant for two months, and another family in Levan. At this time her sister, Johanna Bolette, who had preceded her to Zion by six years, and was the wife of James Dalley, came to see her and persuaded her to go with her to Summit. In the opinion of some members of the family, Lette had in mind at the time the providing of another wife for James, for she was completely converted to the principle of plural marriage.
Petrina's position was like that of many others who came to Zion for the sake of the religion they had espoused. Speaking a foreign language; conditions of living so different from what she was familiar with; living among strangers, many of whom were inclined to ridicule anyone different from themselves, made adjustment somewhat difficult. She had been in Utah almost a year when she was married to James Dalley as his third wife then living, and under such conditions took on the responsibilities of a plural wife on October 9, 1861, in the Endowment House in Salt Lake City. Yet she accepted all, never doubting that the principle of polygamy was from God, and no matter what trials came to her, she bore them bravely. “Self” was forgotten in her desire to serve others.
PETRINA BEGINS HER ROLE AS WIFE, MOTHER AND PIONEER
James tried hard to see that his three families were treated fairly. Each of the wives had her own home, the first three being built near each other in a row running east and west, with Thrine's on the east. For a number of years, her “castle” consisted of one log room about 14 feet square, of hewn logs put together with wooden pegs instead of nails. The logs were squared so that there was not much chinking required. The roof was of split poles, covered with straw and a heavy layer of dirt.
The house faced the north, with one door in the north and one in the south, and a window of twenty‑four panes of glass measuring 8 by 10 inches. A large fireplace made of rock and mortar graced the east end of the room on which, for a while, the cooking was done. The hearth was of flat rocks.
In this room was a four‑poster bed with pegs on the sides and ends on which a cord rope was tightly wound or woven to form squares. On this was laid the straw mattress and on top of this was placed a feather tick made by Thrine. Feathers were used in the pillows, as well. Blankets, quilts and clothing were made from the wool of their sheep, after it had been sheared, carded, spun and woven. There was a trundle bed for the children, which was rolled under the four-poster in the daytime and pulled out at night; also a cradle shaped something like a boat, with rockers underneath, for the baby. As babies had to be rocked to keep them asleep at that time, Thrine would sometimes have one foot on the rocker while operating the spinning wheel with the other. A loom stood in the corner at one side of the fireplace, and a cross‑legged table graced the center of the room, with a bench on one side for the older children to sit upon at mealtime. There was a large rocking chair in which James sat, and Petrina had a stool or other chair.
She cooked on the fireplace for about five years, when James was able to buy three stoves called the “New Era,” each of which had four holes of lids on top and an oven of about 12 or 14 inches square, with an oven door on each side. In the front, two small doors opened into the fire box. There was no grate, but a projection in front with a two‑inch depression, caught the ashes. In this stove, cedar wood, of which there was plenty in the nearby hills, was burned. Fine pitch pine was used in the fireplace, over which, on the mantlepiece, stood a large eight‑day clock.
The families were self‑supporting, Petrina having her own milk cows to provide butter and cheese, as well as many milk dishes, such as balled milk, milk toast, junket, sweet soup, rice cooked in milk, and other nourishing dishes. She had her own chicken coop and chickens, and was able to sell eggs and chickens to the store for cash, which helped with incidentals. Soon, William White came to Summit and began buying such products to freight to the mining town of Pioche, Nevada, thereby helping the people of Summit to cash their produce, and also helping himself to a good living. Sweets were not plentiful, as sugar was high in price, and until they began making molasses in Dixie, bringing it to the towns to the north, even this luxury was not to be had. When her little daughter Della was ill, Petrina bought a small one‑pound can of honey for medicine, at a cost of forty cents. Fortunately, she mixed it with olive oil, which prevented the other children from eating it. One time, she had a small sack of sugar which she put, for safe keeping, on a high shelf above a dresser that had been made from a large chest, and in which all the best dresses were kept. It was propped on two boxes, making it about forty or forty‑two inches high, with a curtain or valance around it and a cover on top. One day, while Thrine was out, one of the little girls climbed on the dresser from a stool, stepping on the dresses in her eagerness to get a taste of the delicious sugar. When she heard her mother returning, she hastily scrambled down, but stepped into the cradle in which baby Fred was sleeping, and awakened him. He began to cry, thus giving the little girl away. But Thrine did not punish her; surely she knew how her pioneer children craved something sweet.
Petrina became an expert at carding, spinning, weaving and knitting. At one time, one of the children needed stockings to wear to Sunday School the next day. She washed some wool, dried it by the fire, carded it into rolls, spun the yarn, knitted the stockings, and the child wore them to Sunday School the following morning.
Although her health was never the best (she suffered many attacks of lumbago that laid her up for weeks at a time) she had a baby every two years, and some even closer. Indeed, the babies came along regularly to all James' wives until he was the father of forty‑four. Some of them died in infancy, but thirty of them were raised to honorable man and womanhood. Through it all, Petrina carried on uncomplainingly. Never was she attended by a doctor in any of her 14 confinements, although Lette was the area's midwife and did everything she could to ease her sister's pain. Three children died as babies, and little Della died of scarlet fever at the age of three. This last death was a lifelong sorrow to gentle Thrine, who felt it had been unnecessary. (She had been forbidden to give the child water to. drink‑‑it was said it would be like pouring cold water on a hot stove.) But she never forgot how her dear little baby begged for a drink. Another victim of ignorance, Lehi B., died at the age of twelve with appendicitis, at that time called inflammation of the bowels. However, she reared ten children to adulthood, all of whom married and reared families of fine, intelligent children.
The one‑room log house was home until after the birth of Thrine's eighth child, at which time Emma, James' second wife, died giving birth to her fifteenth child. Emma had moved some years previously into an adobe house of four rooms and an attic, and Lette had her own seven‑room house on the north corner of the lot. Had Emma lived, Thrine was to have had a house built on what was called The Other Lot. When Emma passed on, the unmarried members of her family were taken into Lette's home, with the exception of the baby, Melissa, who was taken over to be cared for by Thrine. Thrine nursed the baby for about nine months, when the oldest daughter of Emma requested of her father that she be allowed to take the baby and care for it. Petrina reluctantly consented, for she loved the tiny tot as her own.
Emma's house now became available for Thrine and her family, and although she was disappointed in not having her long‑looked‑for new home, she was glad to have more and comfortable rooms under any conditions, for the log house had become almost too uncomfortable to abide. Whenever it stormed, she would have to utilize every pan, bucket and tub to catch the leaking water. She finally told James that something must be done, and she was then moved into Emma's unfinished adobe. It was open around the eaves so that the dust came into the attic with the frequent windstorms common to that locality and there were no stairs, so an inch of dust lay on the attic floor when the family moved in. Later, carpenters put in a stairway so the upper floor could be used, one of them saying, while working there, that it made him think of an Irish house. The attic was finally cleaned and used for storage purposes.
The high, southwest windstorms in Summit were something to be reckoned with. As a precaution, James had early placed a long pine log against the north side of the adobe as a brace. In the early 1890's, an ample frame kitchen was added to the west end of the house, directly over a large cellar. This kitchen and Thrine's Home Comfort range were the pride and joy of her life.
Nothing was “scrapped” in pioneer days. Parley describes how the one‑room log house was utilized after Thrine left it: “Mother's home, the one farthest east, had been converted into a corn storage and harness room. We called it the Wash House, indicating that for a time after being abandoned as a residence, it was used as a laundry room. I have two vivid memories of the Wash House. One is of the Early Harvest apple tree that grew back of it, spreading its branches over the roof and providing us with our first ripe apples in the early summer; the other is of the hundreds of mice that infested the building.”
As the year of 1877 neared, Petrina's cousin, Hannah Petrina, came from Denmark for a visit. She was a thrifty, industrious girl, and as Petrina's health was poor at the time, this girl was a blessing to the family. There was much work to be done with seven children, the eldest fifteen and the youngest two years of age, and it was on the 26th of June of that year that Thrine gave birth to twin girls. As there was not enough breast milk and no nursing bottles, the twins had to be fed with a spoon. It took one person to hold the bowl of food and with a spoon pour the food into a spoon held in the baby's mouth by Petrina, the other baby very likely crying loudly to be fed. The food was potato starch made by grating the potatoes and washing and straining the pulp from the starch until the water came away clear, and then drying the starch. It was put in a sack to be cooked when needed. This was done by stirring a small quantity in cold water and pouring boiling water into it until of a proper consistency. This cooked starch was then prepared with some cream or top milk, sweetened, with a few drops of peppermint added to prevent colic. The babies grew and thrived on this diet until old enough to eat other food. The many diapers to be washed were a never‑ending task, which usually fell to some younger member of the family. There was nothing too good for those twins. Where before there were no high chairs, little rocking chairs or big cradle, all of these things were bought for the twins. They both slept in one big cradle‑‑one in each end‑‑and Petrina rocked them to sleep while she worked.
Two years later, on the 4th of a cold and stormy October, another baby was born, but he died at ten days of age. Petrina was very ill, brought on more or less by her taking cold when the apples were carried through her bedroom up the stairs to the attic to be stored. The baby was named Sylvanus. During this same winter, Petrina had a severe abscess on her face, from which she suffered intensely. Hot packs and poultices were applied by her children and the treatment finally broke the abscess and relieved her.
During these years, the fruit trees were bearing, when the late frost did not freeze the buds, and the work of caring for the fruit fell to the women and children, for the men and boys were busy in the fields. There was a large orchard of apple, peach, plum and pear trees, and it was a real task taking care of so much produce. It had to be cut, peeled and sun dried, since there were no facilities for canning at the time. The only market for it was in Salt Lake City, where it was taken along with the wool to be traded for merchandise such as cloth, shoes, groceries and other things needed for the family — and maybe some cash. The amount received for the fruit was from 3 to 5 cents per pound, not much for such hard work. But Petrina, along with her children, worked early and late to dry as much as possible. Inasmuch as these duties were in addition to her regular labors in caring for her large family, it is no wonder her back gave way, prostrating her at times. But she always got up and went at it again.
PLURAL MARRIAGE IN SERIOUS TROUBLE
When Parley, her youngest child, was only a few weeks old, Petrina was compelled to flee from the deputy marshals so as not to appear against her husband for having more than one wife. Seemingly, to be arrested meant conviction regardless of whether there were witnesses or not, but the women did all in their power to avoid being taken as witnesses, for in court they were insulted, browbeaten and humiliated before the jury, which was made up of any hobo who was prejudiced against the Mormon prisoner. After the deputies came and searched the house and found her gone, a wife never knew at what time, day or night, they might return and take her to Beaver, about forty‑five miles from her home.
And so in January of 1887, though the weather was cold and stormy, Thrine decided to go on an extended visit to Monroe, Sevier County, where her sister, Lena Marie, was residing. A team and wagon were prepared to take her and her baby through the Little Creek, Bear Valley and Circle Valley canyons. Phillip, a son of James, drove the team, and daughter Ida went along to help. The wagon had a canvas cover and was as comfortable as such conveyances were in those days. Thrine sat in the back under the cover, on a roll of bedding with quilts for wraps. In spite of this, however, she was fearful that she or the baby would take cold during this mid‑winter trip. She later related how she silently prayed for Divine protection and comfort, when suddenly the wagon cover seemed to be removed and she was under a bright, starry sky. Ahead of the wagon she could see six white horses being led by a man dressed in white. She could hardly believe what she saw, and felt first one side and then the other to make sure that the cover was still on the wagon and over her.
This manifestation was a great comfort to Thrine, as she felt that her Heavenly Father was watching over her. When she arrived at Lena Marie's home, she was welcomed and made as comfortable as posible, but her trip did not prevent James' arrest on March 5, 1887, nor some of his sons and daughters from having to appear as witnesses at the court in Beaver. Her husband and his brother William, and a number of others were bound over for trial by jury and later went through the farce of a trial and were sentenced to six months' imprisonment and three hundred dollars fine. This was the maximum sentence, and they served it with one month off for good behavior.
On the 6th of October, 1890, a manifesto was issued and voted on by the Saints in the general conference of the Church wherein the practice of plural marriage was discontinued. Along with many other members of the Church, Thrina experienced a sore trial at this time. Her husband, who had always adhered to the counsel of those in authority and did his utmost to obey every requirement, decided he would not live with Petrina as a wife, and that he would divide his property between his two living wives and the children of Emma, the property being in land, water, sheep, stock and horses. “It was twelve years after the manifesto, however, just before he became incapacitated, that Father's will is dated. A final division of the property was not made until after his death in May, 1905.
Father supervised operations of his farms and livestock as long as his health permitted, doing much of the farming himself. He was assisted, of course, by his sons. At various times some of his farmland, sheep and cattle were leased to sons, proceeds being used for the maintenance of the family as a whole — that is, the two wives and unmarried children. The division of the property was more or less of a gradual process. Both wives had their own chickens, and quota of cows to milk, and each had her own lot after Mother moved into her new home. As I remember, there was no discrimination.”
But the financial arrangements did allow Petrina to handle her own property as she wished, and it was not long before she began planning the frame home about which she had always dreamed.
"It was at the time of the Spanish American war that Mother's last home was built on her own lot a hundred yards or more west of the adobe house. The lumber for the house was sawed at a small saw‑ and shingle mill owned and operated by Isaac Jones, her daughter Lena's husband. A large dining and living room was built on the west of the first floor, with a fireplace at the middle of the west end, and a well‑made, decorative front door with a top panel of glass and a transom above opened onto a spacious front porch, above which was a small balcony. (Mother insisted on bringing the large, sandstone hearth from the adobe house for the fireplace in the new home.) There was a parlor with a bay window front, and a large bedroom on the east. The parlor projected far enough beyond the front porch for another glass door entrance. A stairway led from the southeast corner of the dining room to three bedrooms on a second floor. Two chimneys made it possible to have a stove in any of the rooms, if needed. The rooms were well lighted, with large windows — those in the front of the dining — living room being double. The sash of each window held just one large pane of glass, somewhat of an innovation at that time. Another innovation was the corrugated sheet iron roof. How well I remember the sound of the rain and hail on that roof.
“The frame kitchen was moved from the adobe house and joined to the dining room on the south. A screened‑in porch was added to the kitchen on the east. Mother now had a beautiful seven‑room home, of which she was justly proud, and for which, needless to say, she was very happy and appreciative.
“The old quaking asp pole fence along the front of the lot was replaced with an attractive picket fence, and a substantial board fence was built the full length of the dividing line between her lot and Aunt Lette's. A large cellar with concrete walls and a shingle roof rested on a brick superstructure back, or south, of the kitchen. The home faced the street, now Highway 91, on the north.
“Due to the ingenuity and labor of Isaac Jones, Lena and Mother had the first water system in Summit. Isaac built a small water‑tight tank near the corner of Uncle William Dalley's lot, just where the south irrigation ditch turns from west to north. He laid a three‑quarter‑(or half) inch pipe from this tank to his own home, and then a line onto Mother' s home about one block north. By using the headgate for diverting water onto Uncle William's lot, water could be run into the tank through a flume and then through the pipes to Lena's and Mother's homes. Even though the outlets were just standup pipes in the back yards, (or in the sinks), it was much better than carrying water from the irrigation ditches. Difficulties arising from filling the tank on any but their own water turns led to the abandonment of the system later.”
Although she had attended public school in Denmark just three years, Thrine's quest for knowledge and education did not stop there. After coming to Utah, she learned to speak, read and write the English language, and, as did her brother and seven sisters, spoke without the usual Scandinavian accent, or brogue. “But realizing her lack of formal education, she urged and assisted her own children, as well as other members of the family, to take advantage of every opportunity to advance themselves scholastically. My earliest recollections of Cedar City are of the time when Mother was staying with and caring for some of the family — probably Fred, Jesse, Charles and Lillian — while they attended the Parowan Stake Academy. We lived in the little log cabin that now stands as a pioneer relic in the City Park. At that time it stood just south of the George H. Wood residence on lower Main Street, and had a small, lean‑to room on one side. I was too young then to have retained very definite memories.”
The year of 1897 was hectic for Petrina. The Branch Normal School in Cedar City was to open in September, and she planned to move there so that she could look after Minnie, Amelia and Julius, who would be attending. Now fifty‑seven years of age, Petrina had taken on a new responsibility in July, when the wife of Emma's son, Henry, had died, hopefully leaving in Petrina's gentle hands the care of her baby, Mabel. Thrine, feeling a bit weary after having raised her own large family, nevertheless took on this added burden, promising to do her best. The baby was ill at the time, with painful sores in her groins as well as stomach ailments. However, Thrine moved to Cedar City, taking her daughter Esther, son Parley and baby Mabel with her.
Home was now a four‑room, white plastered adobe house on a large lot which afforded ample room for a shed for Violet, the jersey cow, and space to store her hay. Mabel, being bottle fed, counted heavily on Violet. (In the light of present knowledge the little family cow was no doubt contributing to the baby's illnesses with her hard‑curd milk.) Along with her many other duties, Petrina tended the baby day and night, searching for something that would alleviate the little one's suffering. Finally, in August of 1898, after the birth of a baby boy to Susie, Petrina took Mabel to live at her daughter's home so that the sickly little girl could receive some good mother's milk. She also tried Vaseline on the stubborn sores. The total treatment seemed to be just what Mabel needed, for before long she became fat and rosy. Petrina reared this girl to adulthood.
In 1900‑01, the first six graduates from the Branch Normal School, which included Thrine's daughter Amelia and Lette's son Julius, went as a group to Salt Lake City to attend the University of Utah. Thrine was chosen to go along as house‑mother. Mabel, now a three‑year‑old, was taken along, but Parley remained with “Aunt Lette.” Thrine and Mabel returned to Summit the next spring. After her graduation, Amelia taught in the one‑ room school at Summit for a year, Parley finishing the eighth grade as one of her students. The following September, Petrina rented a nice frame house in Cedar City so that Esther and Parley could attend the Branch Normal, and Amelia could pursue her career as Cedar's new fifth grade teacher. Others attending school lived with them, as well, during this year and part of the next. “It was Mother, always, who was ready to go with and care for, not only her own children, but many others in their efforts to obtain an education. It was Mother's encouragement and assistance, financial and otherwise, along with encouragement and help from other members of the family, especially Amelia, that made it possible for me to attend the University of Utah for four years and graduate with the degree of B.S. in Chemical Engineering in 1909.”
And so her last child, with the exception of Mabel, reached the age of responsible adulthood. One by one they had married, and by now her oldest children had large families of their own. Thirty‑four of the grand‑ children who were born in Summit or nearby were welcomed into the world with the tender hands of their grandmother, who often gave them their first baths and cared for their mothers until she was certain all was well. Parley recalls one such occasion: “When our first child, Mary, was born September 30, 1911, my wife's aunt gave her the first baths, but very soon after, both Mother and Aunt Lette came from Summit bringing with them a cradle and other gifts. It was the cradle in which I and other younger members of the family had been rocked to sleep and reposed as infants.”
To Parley, also, are we indebted for the account of another famous family birthday; “The advent of one of Mother's grandchildren that I remember best, besides my own children, of course, was the birth of Hope Hulet Gardner on the Christmas Eve of 1893. Mother and sister Lena were both in attendance upon Ida, Hope's mother, at her home across the street. Lena's three children, Margaret, Joseph and Freddie, and Ida's two oldest, John and Edna, were bedded down at our home, supposedly for the night. The stockings had been filled early and we were left. to dream of the coming of Santa Claus. Little dreaming was done, however, as the six of us were up before midnight, our stockings emptied, enjoying the goodies and other presents with which they had been filled. One of my presents was a candy pig which disappeared mysteriously during the course of our revelries. Finally, Freddie, the youngest of the group, explained the mystery with the statement: ‘I just opened my mouf and it walked wight down my froat.' A night to remember!”
FAMILY AND COMMUNITY ACTIVITIES
Petrina's greatest happinesses were derived from her family and her religion. Serving as counselor and president in the Primary organization for many years, she also labored as Relief Society teacher, again for many years. She encouraged her family to attend religious meetings regularly, as well. “Sunday was the important day at the Dalley homes, and at all homes in Summit. Sunday School in the forenoon, especially for the younger people, and Sacramental Meeting in the afternoon. Another event that should be mentioned at Mother's home was Sunday dinner, either at noon or after church. Usually one or more of the married children and their families would be present to enjoy the delicious chicken and dumplings that only Mother knew how to make.”
A never‑to‑be‑forgotten event occurred in 1888 when Thrine, with her six sisters met with their mother in the Manti Temple to be sealed to their parents. Parley has noted how she enjoyed the Deseret News and other L.D.S. publications. He also speaks of other activities: “I think that attendance at L.D.S. conferences, especially Primary conference, was the outstanding recreation in Mother's life. She attended most of the stake conferences which were held at either Parowan or Cedar City, and, on rare occasions, a general conference at Salt Lake City. As president of the Summit Ward Primary for many years, it was the Primary conferences in which she participated most actively, and from which she derived the most satisfaction and pleasure. Programs for this great event were made up of songs, readings, etc., provided by the various Primary organizations of the stake. We spoke of a reading as ‘Speaking a Piece.' I still remember songs I sang and pieces I spoke at Primary conference.
“The usual conveyance to and from Parowan or Cedar City was a Studebaker wagon with three or more spring seats evenly spaced along the top of the wagon box, with ‘Mat and Kit,’ ‘Doc and Pat,' ‘Doc and Nig,' or some other sturdy team of horses as motive power.”
By the time Parley was old enough to remember, “Aunt Lette' s” home and “Aunt Thrine' s” home had become more or less categorized. Lette was the postmistress, and also maintained the only store in the community for many years. Here, businessmen and other travellers found overnight lodging. Thus her home took on an aura of the business center of Summit.
“Mother's home was more like a recreational or cultural center, especially for the young people, who seemed to gravitate to Mother's parlor on Sunday nights and on other nights when there was an occasion for bringing them together. Here they would sing, visit, have parties, and good times in general. Delightful occasions for congregating in Mother's parlor were the concerts put on by Jim and Lars Nielsen from Annabella, Sevier County, Utah, sons of Uncle Lars Nielsen. Jim was a real virtuoso on the violin, while Lars was an accomplished accompanist with a guitar or mandolin. The parlor would be filled to overflowing. How thrilled the audience was with ‘Listen To The Mockingbird' and many other pleasing melodies. I usually had a choice position during these concerts, coiled around the legs of the round center table and concealed by the cover.”
The demands of pioneer life and the difficulties of pioneer transportation allowed for little in the way of traveling, even had there been time and money to do so. For this reason, the few trips Petrina did take were undoubtedly thrilling adventures. In the spring of 1907, Thrine, with Mabel, went by train to Otto, Wyoming, in the Big Horn Basin, to visit with Lena, Minnie and Esther and their families. Shortly after the turn of the century, Lena and Minnie, with their husbands, had pioneered this vast Wyoming rangeland, and Esther had followed them in 1904 to teach in the public school. Parley lends a poignant note to his mother's return from this trip: “Mother sent me a postcard from Denver, Colorado, during her return trip from the Big Horn Basin, which is dated April 3, 1907. On the card in what I would be happy to know is her own handwriting is the following message: ‘Dear Parley we are here at Denver, will stop at Provo one day, Emma is with me, we are all well, love from Mam T Dall.' (The stop at Provo was to see and visit with her son Fred (Samuel A.) and his family.) But from the way her name is spelled at the end, I think she must have had somebody on the train write the card for her.”
In 1908 an outstanding event occurred for the Bertelsen family in Utah. A reunion was held in Mount Pleasant at which time a monument was placed at the grave of Niels Bertelsen. It was the 100th anniversary of his birth and his seven living daughters were present. Lars, was to have been there as well, but illness sadly prevented his presence. “The sisters were: Lette, Thrine, Kistie, Leanie, Annie, Stenie, and Lanie. I have given the names as I knew them, not the Danish names. Aunt Hannah and Aunt Lena Marie had passed on before this time.”
Again, in 1909, Thrine had a joyful trip. At the end of summer school that year, Petrina and little Mabel joined Parley in Salt Lake City for a two‑week vacation and visit with some of her children who had moved from Summit. Their journey took them to Morgan County, Utah, where Ida and her family had settled; to Ririe, Idaho, for a short stay with Susie and family; then by stagecoach into the lush and magnificent Teton Basin where lived Robert and his two wives and families, Amelia and her children, Sarah, Lette's daughter, and Emma's daughter Mallie, with their families. Great was the joy of this reunion with loved ones.
These trips to the Big Horn and Teton Basins were the only times Thrine was out of Utah after arriving from Denmark.
And so one by one the children and grandchildren had drifted away as work opportunities scarcened in Summit. Lillian and family still remained, and Parley and his wife Mabel had settled in Cedar City, but time hung a bit heavy for Petrina. Perhaps because of this she welcomed the friendship of John A. Beecroft, who along with many other Latter‑day Saints had returned from his Mexican sojourn because of the Pancho Villa revolution, and sought refuge, once again, in Utah. The old adobe house formerly occupied by Petrina became the temporary home of the Beecroft family, and it was not long before a strong friendship grew between John and Petrina, who was now nearing 72 years of age. Parley gives an excellent account of this period of his mother's life:
“John A. Beecroft and Mother obtained a license to wed at the County Court House in Parowan, February 8, 1912, and were married in the evening of February 10th. The ceremony was performed by Bishop Charles R. Dalley. The signatures of Eliza B. Farnsworth (Lette’s oldest child) and Parley Dalley as witnesses are on the marriage certificate. The wedding was in the parlor of Mother's home. Immediate relatives and friends of both families were present during the ceremony and participated in the informal party which followed.
“Why did Mother marry again? It must not be inferred that it was just a response to pressure and persuasion of the Beecroft family — the marriage was by mutual consent, with seemingly apparent advantages for both. All of Mother's children were married and lived away from Summit with the exception of Lillian. Mabel had reached the age where she too would either marry or be away at school. The companionship or a fine, congenial gentleman about her age and a good Latter‑day Saint offered much in the way of filling the void which loomed ahead. Then, too, for once in her life she would have a man of her own. (She had confided to her nephew, Nelse Madsen, some time after her marriage, ‘Nelse, you don't know how good it seems to have a man of your own.')
“John A. Beecroft was an honest, cheerful, industrious, kindly old gentleman whose greatest handicap was deafness. He was not a polygamist, as were most men who had gone to Mexico. He and his wife had raised a large family before his wife died. After this, he had married again, a highly temperamental woman from whom he separated soon after their marriage.
“During the time he lived with Mother he seemed to be always busy. Among other jobs, besides the outside chores, he trimmed the orchard trees and cut the trimmings up for firewood. During late spring, summer and fall, he would go to the fields with a scythe, cut alfalfa and other vegetation from the ditch banks, and then trudge home with a tremendous load on his back to be fed to ‘Old Hetty,' the milk cow. His plodding along next to the highway so burdened is one picture of him I retain in my mind.”
Although their life together was to be very brief, Parley sincerely feels that they were as congenial and happy during the little less than two years of their marriage as could be expected. After Thrine's death, $161.55 of the meager funds of her estate was allotted to this good old gentleman. This was barely enough to pay his way back to Mexico, where he died soon after his return as the result of being knocked over in a cattle corral. It is an unusual coincidence that the same kind of accident incapacitated James for the last years of his life.
SWEET REPOSE, GENTLE PIONEER
Early in January of 1914, Petrina became quite ill. She was placed under the care of Dr. M. J. Macfarlane as soon as it was apparent that she was seriously ailing. Parley immediately sent to Preston, Idaho, for Mabel, who came willingly and did all she could to provide adequate care for her beloved benefactress. Daughter Lillian and her family were on hand, and Parley and his wife in Cedar City kept in constant touch, as did daughter Susanna (Susie) who arrived soon at her bedside. But life had ebbed away for the gracious little pioneer — a tumor of long standing finally succeeded in striking her down on January 31st at Summit, where she had lived for fifty‑three years. She was seventy‑four years and six months old.
And thus the light of a beautiful life flickered out. She had passed her days in the service of others, with never a selfish thought or act in all the years of an eventful lifetime. She never knowingly wronged anyone, and many had cause to be grateful for the help and comfort she gave them in time of need. Fittingly, she was laid to rest with other of the immortals who had shaped the small summit in Iron County into a loved community.
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Following are the children of JAMES DALLEY, born December 20, 1822, and PETRINA BERTELSEN DALLEY, born August 31, 1840:
NAME DATE OF BIRTH MARRIED TO DATE OF DEATH
Robert Bertelsen September 24, 1862 Sophia Farrow November 29, 1953Luella Hulet
John James January 15, 1864 January 15, 1864
Mary Ida November 15, 1866 Sylvanus C. Hulet May 6, 1948
Lette Selena February 14, 1867 Isaac Jones April 25, 1925
Susanna B. December 27, 1868 Joseph S. Armstrong September 28, 1957
Della Delilah March 9, 1871 November 24, 1874
Samuel Alfred October 25, 1872 Virgie A. Benson October 2, 1958
Lillian Rosilla January 26, 1875 Herbert White December 3, 1947
Thrine Amelia June 26, 1877 George B. Green November 26, 1960
Minnie Tryphena June 26, 1877 Lehi A. Thorley October 30. 1912
Sylvanus October 4, 1879 October 14. 1879
Esther Leona October 24, 1880 Niels E. Winters December 13, 1965
Lehi Bertelsen September 9, 1882 February 1, 1895
Parley November 15, 1886 Mabel Naegle
BIOGRAPHY: "Mother was christened 'Petrine' according to the records of the Lutheran Church in Denmark. It was years after she had passed away before I learned that Petrine was her name. To her family, friends and acquaintances she was known as 'Thrine'; to many she was known as taunt Thrine.' To me, as a child, she was 'Mama,' never 'Ma.' Later, it was 'Mother,' with all that the name implies. The living embodiment of love, kindness and devotion, her life was one of self-sacrificing service to her family, friends, community and church." Thus wrote Parley Dalley, youngest child of James and Petrine Bertelsen Dalley, in his charming paper entitled "Memories of Mother." BIOGRAPHY: Petrine Bertelsen was born August 31, 1840. She was a person of quiet composure. She loved her parents devotedly, and was always on hand to do anything in her power to lighten the burden of their daily tasks. Life had always been hard and exacting for her father: using nets with which to catch the fish; spending many long hours in his boat setting the nets; hauling them in when full and then hauling the fish to market; these tasks left little time for leisure. Petrine learned to help him make and mend the large nets that were the tools or his trade. Petrine (Thrine) Dalley An Enduring Legacy, Volume Four, p.305 "Mother was christened 'Petrine' according to the records of the Lutheran Church in Denmark. It was years after she had passed away before I learned that Petrine was her name. To her family, friends and acquaintances she was known as 'Thrine'; to many she was known as taunt Thrine.' To me, as a child, she was 'Mama,' never 'Ma.' Later, it was 'Mother,' with all that the name implies. The living embodiment of love, kindness and devotion, her life was one of self-sacrificing service to her family, friends, community and church." Thus wrote Parley Dalley, youngest child of James and Petrine Bertelsen Dalley, in his charming paper entitled "Memories of Mother." An Enduring Legacy, Volume Four, p.305 Petrine Bertelsen was born August 31, 1840. She was a person of quiet composure. She loved her parents devotedly, and was always on hand to do anything in her power to lighten the burden of their daily tasks. Life had always been hard and exacting for her father: using nets with which to catch the fish; spending many long hours in his boat setting the nets; hauling them in when full and then hauling the fish to market; these tasks left little time for leisure. Petrine learned to help him make and mend the large nets that were the tools or his trade. An Enduring Legacy, Volume Four, p.306 She was sent to public school at the age of seven, and became an ardent student. Very interested in books, she learned the letters of the alphabet and the spelling of several small words in three days' time. Unhappily, her attendance at school was to be short-lived, for after her parents joined the LDS Church, criticism and opposition exhibited throughout the community resulted in the withdrawal from school of Thrine and her older sisters. An Enduring Legacy, Volume Four, p.306 Petrine became an employee in Staarup at the age of fourteen. Her wages for the first year were ten dollars in addition to board and clothes. Although her employer ridiculed her for doing so, she never failed to pay her tithing out of that amount. Yet the man liked her, and he often called the young girl to his bed of illness, where he had lain for seven years, with a request that she sing for him. One day she innocently sang an LDS hymn, "We Are the True Born Sons of Zion," and this so enraged the patient he never again asked her to sing. But this couple, who had no children, loved Thrine and asked her to stay with them and be treated as their own. Had Maren not instilled in her daughter the principles of the new-found faith so firmly that she would let nothing prevent her from going to Zion, it is probable that the girl's life would have been vastly different. An Enduring Legacy, Volume Four, p. 306 Although her employers had not treated the elders with kindness, nor allowed them in the house, Thrine had managed to attend most of the meetings and at one of them had been baptized. After three years, she left this home and went to live with a family by the name of Thorn, near the city of Aalborg, for by now the Bertelsens had become disheartened and disillusioned over the attitude of a large proportion of the people in Staarup, and decided to move closer to the branch in the north. Here they hoped to find not only better treatment, but better work opportunities, for all must now work very hard to prepare for their emigration to America and Utah. In the home of the Thorns Thrine received much training that prepared her for life in Utah, for a year after her arrival Mrs. Thorn died, leaving three small children in her care for a year and a half. An Enduring Legacy, Volume Four, p.306 In the spring of 1860, when she was nineteen years of age, Thrine was selected to go to America with an emigrating family. She made hasty preparations, bidding her parents and sister good-bye on May 5. A steamer carried her to Liverpool, England, where she boarded the vessel Wm. Tappscott. Sailing on May 11, the ship was seven weeks on the ocean, and Thrine, as well as many others on board, was seasick most of the time. The only food she was able to retain was a bowl of chicken soup given her by the kind captain. An Enduring Legacy, Volume Four, p.306 The sea-weary travelers were overjoyed to see the trees of New York, only to be keenly disappointed upon learning that smallpox had broken out on board and they would have to remain for a time on the ship. Those who were stricken with the dread disease, including one of the little girls Petrine had been caring for, were taken to New York to be placed in quarantine. Although all on board had been exposed, no other cases developed, and after two weeks they were permitted to land. An Enduring Legacy, Volume Four, p.307 The company arrive d in Salt Lake City on October 5, 1860. Thrine, who could scarcely speak enough English to make herself understood, had no place to go from the camping grounds. She was finally taken to the home of Franklin D. Richards and made welcome and comfortable until her brother Lars arrived two days later. With him she went to Ephraim, to remain that winter in the employ of a Brother Christian's family. At this time her sister Lettie came to see her and persuaded her to go to Summit. An Enduring Legacy, Volume Four, p.307 Petrine's position was like that of many others who came to Zion for the sake of the religion they had espoused. She spoke a foreign language, conditions of living were so different from what she was familiar with, she was living among strangers, many of whom were inclined to ridicule anyone different from themselves all circumstances that made adjustment difficult. She had been in Utah not quite a year when she was married to James Dalley as his third wife on October 9, 1861, in the Endowment House in Salt Lake City. An Enduring Legacy, Volume Four, p.307 James tried to see that his three families were treated fairly. Each of the wives had her own home, all three being built near each other in a row running east and west, with Thrine's on the east. For a number of years, her "castle" consisted of one large room about fourteen feet square, of hewn logs put together with wooden pegs instead of nails. For a while cooking was done on a large fireplace which graced the east end of the room. An Enduring Legacy, Volume Four,