My little Town Carving

Carving of:

MY LITTLE TOWN

Fayette town carvingIn June 2008 I was approached by the Mayor of Fayette, Scott Bartholomew, to see what the possibilities were of doing a carving to hang in the new town hall.  We discussed many different possibilities to carve, He handed me some old photographs from the town’s archives.  We started taking pictures around town and this is what we came up with.  The original piece is 10′ wide by 4′ tall and hangs in the town hall in the City of Fayette, UT.  To view the full piece click on the picture to the right.

The story is as follows:


In the spring of 1861 my great, great grandfather Joseph Bartholomew and James Mellor were asked by Brigham Young to move their families to the warm creek area of Sanpete co, later called Fayette.  Upon arrival, they found that the Indians claimed ownership of the spring, which was to be the life line of the valley.  They soon made peace with Chief Arropene and Joseph Bartholomew traded 2 fat oxen for the spring.  Later the meadows below the spring were bought for 2 calves.

When the Bartholomew’s and Mellor’s first arrived at the spring, their homes were earthen dug outs with hardened dirt floors.  In 1870 Joseph Bartholomew started construction of his new home.  This home was made of red sandstone, quarried in the hills just southeast of town.  The walls of the home were 18” thick.  The original home has been remolded several times but is still standing.  My Father John P. Bartholomew and Kathleen Day Bartholomew are living in that 138 year old home today.

My great grand Father, John Bartholomew served as the ward Bishop from 1874 to 1914.  It was customary for the traveling Brethren of the church to stay with the Bishops along the way.  On one occasion, Wilford Woodruff, President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, was staying at the Bartholomew home.  He was in the upstairs bedroom for the evening when a rider from Salt Lake caught up with him to inform him of John Taylor’s death.  I have a hand written page from Wilford Woodruff’s journal explaining the anguish he felt as he felt the mantel of the Prophet fall up on him that night in Bishop Bartholomew’s home.

The old school house, even though modern for the times, had no running water or bathroom facilities.  For a period of time, Philo T Farnsworth (the inventor of the Television) was living with my Grand Parents and teaching school in this old school house.   At the time Mr. Farnsworth was living with the family, my father was born in this old home.  Grandma and Grandpa were so impressed with Mr. Farnsworth that they named my dad, John Philo, after Mr. Farnsworth.

When the towns’ children began being transported to the neighboring town, Gunnison to attend school, the old school became a meeting house for the church.  This is where I attended church as a youth.

The old school bell would ring for special occasions.  It could be rung from a rope pulled inside the building.  On really special occasions the boys and girls from town would climb up the tree to get on top of the roof and ring the bell, especially, very early in the morning of the 4th and 24th of July, (waking up the whole town).  Even though the old school house has been torn down now, the old school bell has a new home sitting on top a monument in front of the new church.

When the footings were being dug for the new town hall, the footings of the old school house were found again.

The horizon of this carving depicts the actual mountain scene as it is today, the prominent rugged rock ledges of Mellor’s Canyon, to the north east, the Caterpillar Mountain Range directly east of town and the Molly’s Nipple peeking through the lower hills capping off the skyline to the south.

Around the parameter, bordering the carving, is a replica of each of the brands that have been registered to the residents of Fayette.

Today as you visit my little town of Fayette you will see the fields of corn and hay that are being watered by the warm spring.  Down below town is the Northern end of the Sevier River as it empties in the Yuba Reservoir, and if you watch you may see some cattle in the fields.  If you are really lucky you may even see some deer coming up into the fields to feed from the tamarack covered river bottoms.  The music that you will hear is not the hustle and bustle of a city life, but the honking of the resident geese.  There are quite a few geese that call Fayette home year round, but during the fall the skies and fields are full of the sights and sounds of the geese.  When asked where home is, I have to refer to my little town.

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One Response to “My little Town Carving”

  • Diana Lewis:

    Hi,

    I’m a film student at BYU and currently I’m in a class that is making a series of short documentaries on people from different counties in Utah. I came across your website while doing research on the smaller towns of the state and was wondering if you would be interested in being interviewed as part of a project. I’m still in the process of gathering stories so I’m not certain if this is the one that I will do this semester but if you are at all willing to speak to me about your work that would be great. You can get a hold of me by email or phone. Thanks and have a nice day.

    Diana Lewis
    480-365-9959
    deedeelewis@gmail.com

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