Sunday, November 3, 2013


Hi everyone,
     Last week was quite cool, requiring a jacket on our walks.  But now it is back to sunny and beautiful weather.  We have also discovered another fruit that grows on the back fence.  It is orange, soft and about the size of an apricot, but with small red seeds inside.  It is edible, but having very little flavor.  So far, besides this fruit, there are figs, oranges, olives and a bunch of small bananas.  The figs are actually quite good.
     Last week we both had the opportunity to teach classes in the Center for the 3-day intensive course. Max taught the "getting started" class. Because one of the teachers couldn't be there due to her daughter being sick and needing her help, so we taught two of her classes. Luana Gilstrap had great power-points so we had to study them and maybe add our own insights. The death records class that Max taught was Luana's and Mary taught Luana's class on wills and probates.  The classes went well.   As Mary was researching and studying about wills, she thought she should use a couple of her own ancestors' wills as illustrations.  So she looked up on "The Genealogist" to find the will of James Wheatley which was written in 1825, but was not probated until after he died in 1846.  He mainly wrote his will to make sure his daughter Maria would be taken care of since she was a child born to them later than the rest of his children.  He doesn't mention any of the other children; they probably were already established or possibly got their inheritances already.  He also wanted to be buried in Bunhill Fields, a nonconformist cemetery in London (a nonconformist is anyone who does not belong to the Church of England).
     Anyway Mary also looked on "Ancestry" since they have a site called "England & Wales National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills & Administrations 1858-1966)" where you can find a summary of a will if you just type in their name; so she found "Joseph Rollings' will with effects under 100 pounds [proved] on 12 Feb 1866.  The Will of Joseph Rollings late of Monmore Green Bilston-road Wolverhampton in the County of Stafford[,] Miner deceased who died 12 July 1865 at Monmore Green aforesaid was proved at Lichfield by the oath of Benjamin Davis Rollings of Monmore Green aforesaid Carpenter the Son one of the surviving Executors." Joseph was the father of Sadie Rollings, her mother's grandmother.
     And while searching she found the 13-page will of Daniel Williams which she hadn't seen before, dated 20 September 1841.  There were pages with an inventory of all his books and which child would get them. He was a Baptist minister in Fairford, Gloucestershire.  He listed all 6 of his surviving children (2 had passed away).  His 2 sons-in-law were the executors of his estate. Earlier that year, in 1841, Daniel appeared in the census as an 80 (really 82)-year-old father living with his daughter Sarah who was married to Henry Gamble (also a minister).
     The sister missionaries next door asked us to help them teach Jonathan, a new member of the Church. They were going to teach a lesson about the first principles of the Gospel.  Even after baptism, it's good to continue teaching them.  So Max and Mary went to the Visitor's Center on Friday evening and helped by sharing our testimonies about faith and some scriptures.  It was good to remember our lessons we learned in the MTC.  We also have been teaching parts of  Lesson 3 in Preach My Gospel in prayer meeting since there is a nonmember who meets with us that everyone agrees could accept the gospel and be baptized.
     We also went to the Jewish Society and then again to the British Genealogical Society that meet in the Family History Center, none of whom are members.  We talk with them and help if needed.  We are also involved  on a planning committee for the Black "Discover Your Roots Conference" which will be held in March.  We might also be involved in teaching then: Max about Archives and Mary in teaching young people.  We need to work on these lessons, that's for sure.
     We often help patrons who come in to the Center:  helping them print cards to take to the temple, work with the Family Tree, and whatever they are trying to find.  Mary helped Sister Tucker, wife of the Institute director from our ward, to sort out who was her ancestor's mother, since the father had two wives. She had a great family picture.  She wanted to be accurate since she was making a book to give to each of her six children.  We found her answer on the Census and on Find-a-Grave.
Pat Nixon's tombstone
Richard Nixon's tombstone
     For our day off last week, Max and Mary went to the Nixon Library and Birthplace.  That is where his boyhood home is.  All the furniture had been stored and was authentic.  They didn't have electricity.  Even the dishes were preserved. Did you know he played 5 instruments:  piano, accordion, clarinet, violin and saxophone.  He also was on the cover of Time magazine 54 times.  There was a very good commentary on Watergate; in a film presentation was piece of an interview with Elder Christofferson of the Council of the Twelve. He had been a law clerk to Judge Sirica in Washington.  He said because of all the true and accurate testimony given, he was proud of his profession.  And we saw the helicopter that the presidents use around Washington and fly back and forth to Camp David.

   This week we went to Hollywood to see the stars on the Hollywood "walk of fame." Each star in the sidewalk has the name of a famous actor, singer, dancer, director, or producer. Nearby at the famous Chinese theater are performers' signatures with their hand and footprints in the concrete.  It was late in the afternoon so we took a tourmobile of Beverly Hills in the dark to see where movie stars live or lived.

Doris Day added hers the year Max graduated from high school.  Remember Red Skelton?

Love to all,
Elder and Sister Evans