Words of Clarence Gardiner:
Frederick Gardiner was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, 26 March 1879, the son of Robert and Margaret Stewart Gardiner, who emigrated from Dundee, Scotland.
His father, Robert Gardiner owned a restaurant and candy shop. The location of the home and factory was directly back of what is now known as the Kearns Building (136 South Main). It was here that Frederick was born; the fifth child in what later grew to ten members---five boys and five girls.
The regular schooling of Fred in his early boyhood may be said to have ended when these early “grades” were completed as the fortunes of the family became involved in the disturbed economic conditions of the country which assumed serious proportions in the early 1890’s, when a great depression caused widespread suffering and loss of property throughout the United States and was particularly severe in Utah. The farm proved unproductive and Robert Gardiner becomes involved in financial difficulties. Some of the near neighbors of Fred were “sheep men” owning large herds, which were taken during the summer months to the mountains and valleys o the upper Bear River, and wintered in and about Skull Valley in the western part of the State. Two of these neighbors, Henry Sutton and James W. Marsh, were engaged in this enterprise, and at an early age Fred was engaged as a herder and camp-tender in their employ, and in his earlier years spent many months on the “sheep range”. He also engaged in the same activity with Bishop James Wrathall, of Grantsville, and was held in high esteem by those keen and careful sheep men, because of this intimate understanding of the characteristics of the flocks entrusted to his keeping. His associates on the range had him in great esteem because of his rather profound ability, carefully planning the movements of the sheep to the best advantage. The interests of his employers were always uppermost in his mind and he treats their property, both of livestock and camp equipage with the feeling that it was a sacred trust imposed on him, and that it had to be fulfilled with the best and ability he had
Family Moves Fred 15
About the year 1893, the family moved fro the farm into the city, locating in the Fourteenth Ward, but Fred continued for some years following his vocation with the sheep.
LDS Business College - Fred is 22
About 1900, deciding to spend more time at home, he was enrolled for two winters in the L.D.S. Business College, and also worked for some time in the shops of the street-car company as repairman, and took up the study of electrical mechanics. But the “call of the wild” seemed always to be beckoning him back to the life and friendships of his earlier associations and he seemed to feel, in the confinement of the city, like a prisoner waiting of the day of liberation, or an apprentice counting the days of his servitude, and not long afterward he had accepted the responsibility employment as foreman for a large sheep and cattle company in southern Idaho.
It would seem like the “call of destiny” that Fred should determine on this change in his earlier region of activity and employment; for it was here, in the region in and about Sublett, Idaho, that he formed the acquaintance, fell in love with and later married Hope Hulet, a beautiful and intellectual young schoolteacher in that somewhat rural community. Life in this semi-barren region was hard at best, the Fred’s companion met all the changing vicissitudes of life with a stoical courage and fortitude filled with faith and optimism that overcame all obstacles and brought to their union a happy home of eight wonderful, ambitious children. A more gifted pen must record the life and labors of his family in the town of Malta, Idaho, where a lasting impress has been established in the life the community both in a religious and civic capacity.
On the morning of December 26, 1960, Fred Gardiner passed away at his home in Malta, Idaho, just three months prior to his eighty-second birthday.
Summary Life of Fred Gardiner
Fred Gardiner in his early manhood was deprived of many of the tender associations of home and family, and the guiding influence of parents, in his determination to help to alleviate to some extend the struggles through which they were forces to face, but from boyhood the throughout his life he manifested a deep and abiding strength of character, under many and varied forms, and kept himself free from the setting vices and follies that were common among the vulgar classes of society with which he as often forces to mingle. Though deprived of the many and admirable facilities of the Church in training the young men to lead lives of righteousness, yet he seemed to be inborn in his very nature a deep and profound faith in the Gospel of our Lord, which sustained him in all the changing vicissitudes of life, and ennobled all his later years. And it may be truthfully be said, that in choosing a marvelous woman as his life’s companion, he found the one who could awaken and develop those more or less latent qualities which merged together, enriched their life’s, which qualities they have transmitted to their posterity, worthy of emulation, and a precious heritage “of golden memories, that are good and sweet!’
Notes on the Life of Fred Gardiner by his wife Hope Gardiner
He was good company and had a good sense of humor.
There was a small ward at Sublett, but Fred’s work took him out on the range so much of the time that he had had little connection with the Church activities after he left Salt Lake. He had missed this side of living, but always had the Standard Works with him and studied them whenever he could. He always had a dictionary handy and liked to learn new words. While riding alone, he practiced the times tables and could give offhand any of the times tables up to the twenties. While I was teaching summer school that summer, I too felt the lack of Church activity, and our belief in common for the Church made us become friends very soon.
Although Fred Gardiner owned the home where I boarded, I did not see him for some time after I arrived there. He was away on the summer range with his sheep and only came to the ranch occasionally. He seemed rather shy and did not have much to say for a while. As time went on we became good friends. He was good company to be around. He had a keen sense of humor and liked to tease. The Welches seemed to think a great deal of him, but the women folk sometimes didn’t know how to take his joking.
Times were hard for people then, and they were many miles from a store. Likely at times it was hard to provide the necessary food. However, while I was boarding with them, they served adequate meals. But I learned that once they had cooked a jackrabbit when Fred was with them for a meal. He couldn’t bring himself to partake of any of that meat. Mrs. Welch and Mrs. Whitney were very much offended and no doubt embarrassed. I do not know what was said or done at that time, as it happened before I arrived.
Fred’s Horse Pud
One morning as I was walking to the schoolhouse, Fred was leaving to go to his sheep camp. He walked along with me as far as the schoolhouse leading his saddle horse, “Pud.” When we reached the schoolhouse, Fred noticed that the cover was off the water cistern. He said some motorist passing by must have stopped to get some water and left the cover off. When he looked into the cistern there was a drowned jackrabbit in it. Fred got the rabbit out and, with a mischievous look on his face, proceeded to tie that stiff, bedraggled, wet jackrabbit on the back of his saddle. I said, “What are you going to do with that old rabbit?” He said, “I’m going to take it down for Mrs. Welch to cook.”
The thought of him offering that specimen to them to cook struck me as being so funny and ridiculous, I could hardly keep from laughing every time I thought of it during the day. Then when I learned that evening that Fred had actually taken that wet, old rabbit down to the house to those folks, I couldn’t keep from laughing, and couldn’t stop laughing for a while even though I didn’t blame them for being vexed with me. I know Mrs. Welch was boiling mad at me, but I had to have my laugh out anyway. She said, “Well, laugh if you want to, but I don’t think it is funny.” Well, from her point of view, it wasn’t funny. It was embarrassing and I felt foolish to think I had added to her hurt feelings. It was the picture in my mind of that wet, stiff jackrabbit tied on the back of that saddle to be offered to anyone to cook that struck me as being so unheard of and funny. If they had had a sense of humor and not taken it so seriously, they could have laughed along with me and we all would have been happier. Those people were very kind and thoughtful of me as long as I stayed with them. The cistern had to be emptied and cleaned out, and more water hauled to fill it.
During that summer there was very little recreation for Leora and me, so occasionally we went for a horseback ride on Fred’s gentle little bay pony, Pud. He was very nice and easy to ride, as he did not jolt one as some horses do. I really enjoyed riding that pony.
When Fred knew how much I liked Pud, he told me he was going to give him to me. But such a prize was not to be for me. Before I went back to Meadow Creek the next summer, Pud had found the granary open and ate some poison grain, which killed him.
Fred had a natural talent in music and enjoyed playing the violin, although he never had the opportunity to take many music lessons. While he lived at Meadow Creek, he often played for the dances at the schoolhouse, and often was asked to play for dances at Malta. Flossie Smith usually accompanied him on the piano at Malta.
When I was ready to leave Meadow Creek to go home the fall of 1919, Fred took me as far as Malta. He had been asked to play for a dance that night at Malta. I went over to the dance with him for a little while, but soon decided that I was too tired to stay. I had had a busy day at the schoolhouse, besides getting my belongings packed. I had a room at the Deardorf Hotel for that night. During the evening Fred came over for a few minutes. He brought a welcome treat, a large glass of pineapple ice cream soda. The weather was very hot and sultry. He went back to play for the dance a while longer. I went to bed and soon fell asleep, but was awakened by a lot of wild whooping and hollering out in the street between the hotel and the dance hall. I couldn’t figure why there was so much noise and commotion at that time of night. I had heard something in the past about some of the Malta boys being rowdy and drinking liquor, so decided something like that was happening. Next morning when Fred came to take me to breakfast, I asked him what was happening the night before. He said some of the boys had been drinking, and got too noisy. One of those noisy fellows had been a passenger in Fred’s car when we rode to Malta that afternoon. During that ride he was as quiet and timid as a little mouse, and I figured he must be very reserved and bashful. It took only a swig of whiskey to make him as loud and uncouth as an Indian on the warpath. I thought then, “One thing for sure, I never want to live in Malta.” Little did I think that Malta would be where I would spend most of the rest of my life. However, I have found there were many fine, good people living in Malta.
Date to Marry
When school closed and I was ready to go home for the summer, Fred insisted we set a date to be married. So June 2 was the date. Since I had only about two weeks to get ready to be married, my mother and sister, Verda, did much to help. They did most of the sewing on my wedding dress.
I was home about two weeks before Fred arrived there. He had been to Salt Lake to see his folks. His brother, Clarence, was a bishop in one of the wards there at that time. He ordained Fred an Elder on 30 May l920. Although I was of age, I insisted that Fred ask my parents consent. He did so, but took good care that I was not present when he did. I remember how shocked Father was when he learned that Fred’s hair was grayer than his own. Fred’s hair started turning gray quite early. Father’s hair was not all gray when he died at eighty-five years of age. He always had beautiful, thick, wavy hair. Fred’s hair was not too thick, but had a natural, kinky curl.
I had wished that both father and Mother could go with us to be married, but Father could not ride in a car without becoming very carsick. Mother went with us to Salt Lake. On our way, we had just reached the foot of the mountain road near the mouth of Weber Canyon when the car stopped. Fred looked the situation over and found that there was no gas in the tank, although he had filled it the day before. There was nothing to do but for him to walk about three miles to the nearest store to get some gas. Although it was an inconvenience, we still thought it quite a humorous happening at such a time. Mother and I stayed at a hotel that night. Fred stayed at his brother Clarence’s home.
That was just a beginning of our financial troubles. While Fred was back East to take a bunch of lambs to market, someone (he suspected one of the herders) made off with about 300 ewes. Those depression years had ruined many stockmen. The banks and loan companies, which had loaned money to buy feed and stock, began closing in on those who had been obliged to borrow money. We fared as others in the same situation. About August of that year both of Fred’s ranches were lost as well as the sheep.
The first day we got to Meadow Creek, the man from the bank that had the mortgage on the sheep and ranches came to see Fred. We knew what was ahead of us, because many others had lost all their possessions in that depression. When the man from the bank came, he hadn’t had any dinner and there wasn’t any place but our place where he could get any food. I had mixed bread early that morning before I started driving the team, but hadn’t had a chance to bake before dinnertime. So I made some fried bread for our dinner. That was all I could do for Mr. Hoover. I thought I gave him a fairly good meal considering our just arriving in a camp wagon. I asked him if he had had enough to eat. He gave me a rather smirky answer, and said it would keep him from starving. If I had known his lack of consideration I might have let him go without dinner.
He got angry with Fred once because the sheep got on his land. He threatened Fred’s life for that. He came one day about a week after the baby was born and offered to help in any way he could. Fred told him that he didn’t know of anything that we needed right then. Mr. Evans likely was offended the reason he was so angry the day Mother and I met him. Mother said, “He is the meanest looking man I ever saw”. He was really a handsome man, but his terrible temper and bad disposition were something to deal with, both for his family and his neighbors.
In August 1921, the bank foreclosed on us and we lost the sheep and both ranches. Incidentally, in the 1960’s, the interstate highway was built through Meadow Creek. In the time since I taught in the Meadow Creek School, most of the dry farmers had left their farms and homes, and moved to other parts of the country. Mr. Arthur D. Pierce, of Malta, had bought many of the abandoned dry farms from the County or the banks. Thus, he became a wealthy landowner and stockman. He became owner of both of Fred Gardiner’s ranches, as well as many others. The old rock schoolhouse and the Pierce buildings on Fred’s home ranch are about the only landmarks left in the Meadow Creek area now that the freeway passes through.
There was very little work available that winter, so there was little income. Occasionally Brother Smith, who was a counselor to Bishop I. J. Neddo, would ask Fred to play the violin for a ward dance. That was expected to be done as a free service. Had our circumstances been better, I would not have thought much of it, but I did feel that it was not quite fair to Fred. He had to buy gasoline and travel about five miles to town. One night at a dance, not a Church dance, a man decided to pass the hat to pay for the playing. When he reached in his pocket for money to pay Fred, he brought out $1.50. He kept the rest. He was so considerate.
Fred got work on the railroad very soon after we got there.
So soon Fred was riding like Paul Revere to the Peterson store two miles away to telephone Dr. Dorland. (Golden Born)
I will never forget one stormy night that summer when Fred had to go Malta for groceries. It was about dark when he started home. The sky was dark with heavy dark clouds. While he was traveling there was a terrific electric storm. I do not remember a more frightening electric storm than that one was. To make bad matters worse, the car lights went out. The flashes of lightning came one right after another so that it was light most of the time. Fred would have to travel as far as he could with each flash of lightning. It took him a long time to get home and I was so worried about him, and so scared of all the thunder and lightning. I had put the children to bed before the storm got so terrific. I was glad they were asleep and were not frightened. Sister Gunnell told me the next day how her children had been so frightened and clung to her, and how they took turns praying for their safety. I, too, was frightened and prayed for Fred’s safety and for our own safety and for others, also. What a wonderful feeling of relief and thankfulness I experienced when Fred finally arrived home safely after such a dangerous and difficult experience. The storm finally passed over and we were very thankful to be safe and able to go to bed and rest.
Fence the Place
Fred worked hard all that spring and summer on the desert land. He had to fence the place, and needed help to measure the land so he would know where to put the fence. He had no one to help him except June who was not yet four years old. His father would carry him part way, usually, as he was not too strong. June would hold one end of the long rope for his father and they measured the 200 acres. When they got it measured, Mr. Gunnell said it wasn’t right, so they had to do the measuring all over again. That was a hard thing under the circumstances, but they did it.
Death of a Horse
He cleared the sagebrush off quite an area. He had to dig a well and irrigate the land and plow it before he could plant it to alfalfa. He irrigated it partly from Raft River and later from the well. One side of the well was dug out so the horses could walk down and get a drink. One day when one of the horses, “Old Nick,” went down to get a drink, he slipped and fell down and couldn’t get up again; probably his neck was broken. Fred felt really bad about losing that horse. He thought so much of that team, “Nick” and “Brownie.” Nick had a white strip down his face and was a tan color; Brownie was a dark brown color. They were such high-spirited animals, always willing to do their best.
One day we took a lunch, and Fred took the children and me over to see what he had been doing on the place. He had bought a nice lamb roast in town the day before. He took his bake oven and roasted that lamb meat, and how good it did taste to all of us. It was a real picnic day for us as a family.
Fred felt really bad about losing that horse. He thought so much of that team, “Nick” and “Brownie.” Nick had a white strip down his face and was a tan color; Brownie was a dark brown color. They were such high-spirited animals, always willing to do their best.
When Fred tried to find out what the trouble was, he couldn’t see anything around, but next morning two young fryers were missing. Fred made nests of hay near the wagon so the children could get the eggs easily. One day Golden, who was less than three years old, had noticed one of the Plymouth Rock hens on the nest, so was anxious to be the one to bring the egg to me. He sat down outside to wait. After waiting awhile he became impatient. I heard him talking and looked to see to whom he was talking. He was saying, “Son of a gun, son of a gun,” over and over. He was tired and impatient waiting for her to get off the nest so he could get and bring the egg.
It was late when Fred got back. He had been having difficulties. The heavy bedsprings kept sliding off the top of the loaded car. In the dark it was hard to see how things were doing.
Fred worked helping build the highway between Strevell and Idahome, so was away from home much of the time. The summer of 1926, June was five years old, Golden was three and a half years old and Mary was one and a half years. Sometimes the two little boys would take a two-quart pail and bring us a drink of fresh water. They were so willing to help any way they could. Mary was very young, but just as willing and anxious to help.
Fred made a small coop for the chickens. When spring (1926) came we had eggs enough for our needs and could have a chicken to eat occasionally, which was helpful. Fruit was scarce and hard to get, but we did manage to get a few peaches to can. We set the hens that wanted to set and raised quite a few young chickens. While we were still living at the Sears place, I would send about a half-bushel of eggs to the store and get my groceries. I could get a five-pound brick of cheese for $1.25. Now (1977) one pound of cheese costs much more than that amount.
In November of 1926, we decided to go back to Peterson for the winter. We were expecting our fourth child. As Fred was working on the highway, he would take us to Peterson and then return to Malta to work and batch it. The highway wasn’t as good then as it is now and the Model T did not travel very fast.
No Car Lights
Fred told the man he would help him get by our car, “but would he help get our car lights fixed first?” The man said, “Oh, no, I am in a hurry, I can’t stop. I have to get by.” He managed somehow to get his car past our car, but I expected to see it slide down the mountain. That man surely had no consideration for anyone but himself. Fred finally got the lights fixed, but it was a time of great anxiety for us while he was working. We were surely relieved and thankful when we could get going and reach my.
In April 1927, Fred went to Salt Lake City to General Conference. While he was there his father, who was 82 years of age, passed away. He had been living for a while at the home of his son, Clarence. While going down the basement stairs, he fell and broke his collarbone. During the time he was recovering from that accident, he suffered a stroke and lived only a short time after that.
That April, Fred was made a member of the Stake High Council and worked in that capacity for several years. John A. Elison was Stake President at the time. During the time that Bishop Orson Sanders was in office, Fred was made Ward Clerk for the Malta Ward and served for several years. Later, he was first assistant to William W. Barrett, the High Priest Group leader.
Although Fred had worked in areas where he had no chance for activity in the Church, he was always ready and willing to attend church services and do whatever was asked of him by those in authority. He was a great reader, and always had a good book handy. He studied the Scriptures whenever he had time to read. He never forced the children to attend church, but always was ready to go with them. Many times when he had no means for transportation, he walked a long distance to church meetings.
We should have written all of those stories down then, because now we have forgotten too much to be able to tell them as Fred did. His sense of humor helped make his story telling more interesting.
Fred went out to try to locate her and see what the trouble was. He was walking along the creek where the noise had seemed to come from. He saw something white down in the grass. He started to reach down to pick it up to see what it was when he got a whiff of skunk scent. He decided quickly not to pick that white thing up. It was lucky for him that he made a quick decision. Skunks are better left untouched.
Fred got permission to baptize June in the middle fork of Cassia Creek that runs through the back yard near the house. He was baptized 10 August 1929 by his father and confirmed the next day in Sacrament Meeting by I. J. Neddo
Fred had promised the bishop that he would take his truck and haul some benches from the Sublett church house that morning for use at conference. The children had no way to get to conference so they stayed home that day.
Later in the fall they were able to move to the new schoolhouse. Fred was hired as custodian. The wages were $40 a month. Then when the depression was at its worst stage, the trustees decided to let another man with a large family share the job with Fred. They each got $20 per month. While he had the whole job of sweeping and tending the boiler room, Golden and June would help with the sweeping and dusting. When he just took care of the boiler room and the heating, he often had to stay late when there was a school meeting, a basket ball game, or some other activity. The children liked to go where he was in the boiler room and eat their lunches while he ate his. While Fred was working around the school, if he had a few spare minutes he would read Scriptures or read some good book. He took a high school class or two. He liked mathematics. During those years and later, he completed several correspondence classes.
While Fred was working around the school, if he had a few spare minutes he would read Scriptures or read some good book. He took a high school class or two. He liked mathematics. During those years and later, he completed several correspondence classes.
The summer of 1930 we had a good crop of turkeys and Fred raised some hay and grain, but there was always a struggle to provide the necessities of life.
He passed away suddenly on the morning of 26 December 1960. We had had a very pleasant Christmas. Mary and Frank were with us. It was a great shock and loss to us as a family, and home has never been the same since. There have been many years without him, but what a blessing my family has been to me. All have been kind and considerate, and what a satisfaction it is to see them all living good, honorable lives.
Fred was always very faithful in carrying out his Church assignments and he studied the Scriptures regularly.
In his earlier years he would study books I the evenings but later he would just study the scriptures. His scriptures were well worn from use and well marked from study.
Grandpa had beautiful handwriting. He would practice often at the table in the front room after he was done with the chores of the day
He got so good that he was in demand as a secretary in the church. For many years he was secretary to the high priests quorum, a position which he held up until his death.
After he got back active into the church he went down to a bar and grill to talk to someone on business. The guys in there were rude. They said some derogatory things about those Mormons.
He picked up the loudest of the group and physically put him on the floor.
A year later the same guy got drunk on the 4th of July and said that he and Fred would take on the entire town.
Fred received a patent for a homestead entry in 1914. This became part of the lower ranch at Meadow Creek. In 1917 Fred received a patent for a desert land entry. This became part of the upper ranch at Meadow Creek. In 1920 Fred purchased an "isolated tract" that became part of the lower ranch. Hope received a patent for a desert land entry in 1943 (the Bridge place). Fred had already used his right to file on a desert entry so Hope filed on the Bridge place.