May 27, 2015

The Stories We Tell

One of the greatest aspects of our lives (and one that I can enjoy every day of my new job) is to tell stories. Now, those of you who have read my books, or even read this blog, know that I have a HUGE fan of telling stories. Lady Hiva says that my stories get more embellished every time I tell them. I won’t argue that, I just get excited as I engage people in the story! Hehe.

This week as we were out and about for work we were able to learn more stories about Utah. The Mormon Pioneers came from the Eastern United States hundreds of years ago to avoid persecution and they made the desert their home. I often wonder what those people would think now if they saw the way the population is growing and growing. Their one time village and small strategic settlements spread across the region is now a large metropolitan city (I saw large, but compared to DC, Manila and Istanbul our last three homes, it is a bit small).

My own family has plenty of stories from the pioneer days of settling in South Central Utah. The levels of sacrifice and perseverance are unmatched. Today I was able to hear one stories that really touched me. There was a man, John Rowe Moyle, who came to settle in Alpine, Utah, 30 miles south of Salt Lake City. He built a modest home (large by the standards of his time) to house his young family out of stone. It is complete with a tower to defend the home against Indian invasion. He even made a trap door and started an underground tunnel from the home to the tower. The tunnel was not finished because the threat of invasion decreased and Moyle was busy as a stone mason for the Salt Lake City Temple.

Moyle would walk the 30 miles from Alpine to Salt Lake City every week. And he did it with a wooden leg! Talk about amazing ambition. His dedication to building the temple was unsurpassed. His legacy can still be seen in the stone work of the iconic LDS building. We were able to go with a friend who was asked to create a replica of the wooden leg for people who came to the home, now turned museum, to see what Moyle faced as he sacrificed for his beliefs.
Old Moyle home in Alpine, UT. Now is a museum dedicated to John Moyle

Entrance to the tunnel that was never finished and now houses the furnace

Hidden door to the tunnel

The Indian protection tower

What a story of dedication and love for their faith. I am not sure how many people could walk the 30 miles today, let alone to do it twice a week on a wooden leg. But he left us plenty of stories to tell. So think about your stories that you have in your lives. Write them down and pass them on. 

Holding the replica of Moyle's wood leg.
Just for fun, read this headstone caption...How about that for a story?: 

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