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The Dee Lora Hays Autobiography.

His own words that describe the life of an amazing man and his family.



"I was born the 7th of march 1877 at Riverton ( Cickasaw ) Alabama of goodly parents who were John Jesse Hays and Caldonia Grady. My mother was a cousin to Henry Woodfin Grady the great southern writer. My Mother had a ( Twin ) sister named Harriet. She married John Powell. My father was a soldier in the Southern Army, a farmer, and a man who always stood for right. I was the third child. Before me were John Winston and Wiley. After me were Monroe, Rose Tillman, Cora, and Maud Cleveland. Just before Wiley died, he wanted mother to feed me to the hogs. ( He was only three years old and very sick and as I was the baby, he was a little gealous of me.) Monroe died when he was about nine years old. Cleveland died when he was about 27 years old. Tillman died when she was 33 years old. She was married to Clarence Tice. Father died in 1924. Mother died in 1925. I was raised in the backwoods of Alabama. I attended school for a very short time. I left school to go to work for the government at the age of fifteen on the Tennessee River. The project now the Muscle Sholes. I worked on and off on the river and furnished timber for the government during the construction of the canals just below what is now known as the Wilson Dam. While I was working near Riverton, I met two Elders of the Latter-day Saints Church. Elders Mason and Hubbard. I invited them to my fathers place. From that time on they made my fathers home headquarters for the church for that part of the state. After making a complete investigation, I left the Methodist Church and joined the Latter-day Saints Church. I was baptized by Elder Sidney S. Reynolds of Salt Lake City. I was confirmed a member of the Church by Elder Thomas H. Humphreys. I labored on and off with the elders in Alabama for two years serving as superintendent of the Sunday School. Then I emigrated to Zion. I was the first member of my family to join the Church. Shortly after, the others joined. I arrived in the spring of 1900. After working for a short time in Salt Lake City and in Grantsville, I went to Paris Idaho and engaged in the creamery business making butter and cheese for about four years. I lived for a short time at the home of some very fine people. Bishop H. T. Humphreys and family. Then I went to board with a old english family. James and Mary Davis. It was there I met dear little Stella, who after 15 months court-ship, became my dear wife and companion and has been very largely my inspiration up to the present time. For several years I have been active in the Church, both ward and stake, acting as Stake Treasurer in the Sunday School for the Bear Lake Stake. For a number of years I visited sunday schools making long trips early Sunday morning with the weather below zero. While living in Paris Idaho, we were blessed with two lovely children. Jesse and Ethel. We also had the pleasure of taking care of our little Jean Thromander, who's mother died at birth. Jean was the same age as our daughter Ethel. Her father came for her when she was about eleven months old, and took her to his new wife and home. We moved from Paris Idaho to Driggs in abot 1905 to open a dairy business in the Teton Basin. While working in the creamery in driggs under the direction of president Don C. Driggs, I was bothered by rheumatism and gave up the dairy business. I went to Bear Lake County and engaged in the life insurance business. During this time our dear little Mary came to live wth us. We then moved to Pocatello and I worked for the railroad. Soon after, I transferred to Montpelier Idaho. I wrote life insurance as a side line for the Intermountain Life for about a year. Then in 1908 I moved back to Paris and put my full time to writing insurance up to early in 1913. We moved to Salt Lake City where I was made agency director for the Utah Life Insurance Company ( Intermountan Life ). We moved to Evanston Wyoming where I had the state agency for two years. During the latter part of 1925 I was persuaded to start selling what prove to be "bad" stocks ( Baldwin Radio) and we moved to Montana. We lived near Glacier National Park, and worked there for about two years. I had trouble about selling these bad stocks, so we moved back to Salt Lake, and in February 1933 I was fully exonerated through the courts from the bad stock deal. During this rapidly covered period of time, we have had seven other beautiful children. I have had many joys and few sorrowful experiences. The two main ones is, that we were called upon for a short time to part with, in death, our dear little Stella and William Forest. I have had much sorrow with witnessing operations and much serious illness which came to mother ( my wife ); but, thanks to the great blessing, mercies, and answers to my prayers to my Heavenly Father, her life was spared and she is now enjoying a fair degree of health at this time. She recently has had her health partially restored through a blessing under the hands of the Acting Patriarch of the Church. This covers the the main events, or nearly all, of the main events in my life up to date, November 1933. I, now being I think, of entirely rational mind, I want to pay this tribute and dedicate this to the wife of my youth. My dear little help-mate. She was and has been a faithful help-mate though joy and sorrow, a faithful Latter-day Saint, and a good mother. Mothers fighting the great battle of life. They are the great conquerors. The great captains in life. If I could relate all the good things and noble acts and deeds, that I can think of, which Mother, with the other good Mothers do perform, in the language of a great man, M.W. Cowley, I could not relate a 1000th part of the great good and noble acts and sacrifices of mothers. They have never been told. In closing, I want to bear my testimony to my children that I know that my redeemer lives. That Joseph Smith was a true Prophet, Seer, and Revelator in this dispensation. And that Heber J. Grant is, at this time, a true Prophet, Seer, and Revelator. And that I know our Father in Heaven hears and answers the prayers of the righteous and his humble children. I know that if you, my children, will heed council of the Authorities of the Church and will be guided by that still small voice, that your reward and joy and glories will be great." Dee Lora Hays November, 1933

DateNovember 1933
PlaceSalt Lake City
File nameThe Dee Lora Hays Autobiography
File Size
Linked toHAYS Dee Lora (1877)
AlbumsHays, Dee Lora and Stella Davis Hays family

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