Written History of Ralph Emanuel Whitney


Clay and Lorraine W. Nelson

After Clay and I were married we were very close to Dad and Mom.  We went on many trips with them and had many pleasant memories.  They nearly always spent Christmas with us as we had the least amount of children.

Some of the happiest days of my father’s life were when he and Mother were called to work in the St. George Temple.  December 1960 they moved to St. George.  When we took Cindy to be sealed to us in February 1962 it was a thrill for me to see him working there and so happy.

Clay and I and Cindy went on many fishing trips with my dad and mom. In August 1965 Cindy and I went to St. George to spend the weekend.  Dad wanted to go fishing so Mom asked me if I would take him.  She was worn out from caring for him and wanted to spend the day alone.  I took him to New Castle Reservoir.  I think that was his last fishing trip.  On the way back we took the back way down through New Harmony and back to St. George.

I remember on Halloween when Cindy was four (1965) Dad and Mom came down from St. George to spend a couple of days with me as Clay was gone deer hunting.  We took their pickup and went to Goodsprings and around the back to explore a mine. We stopped by the Yellow Pine Mine (Dad worked here when they lived in Goodsprings) and it had been covered up.  There was a pipe sticking up out of the ground and when the wind blew it sounded like a ghost howling.  I think that was the last time he was able to come to Vegas due to his failing health.

I thank the Lord for my wonderful, loving, caring parents.  Now that they are gone I miss them very much and will rejoice when the day comes that I can be with them again.


Laverne Stevens:

These are some of my favorite memories that I think about every now and then and some I have remembered since I received your request.  They are not in the order that they happened as I don’t remember the year they happened.

I remember having a hard time with math even though I always liked it.  But I had to count on my fingers when doing addition.  One evening while doing my homework Dad saw me counting on my fingers and sat down beside and taught me how to do it in my head without using my fingers.  I enjoyed math more throughout my school years and still enjoy doing math.

Laverne Whitney

One weekend Dad took us on a trip to the Black Mountains (as we called them) about 10+ miles from our ranch.  Just the four younger kids were still at home I believe. We went with the team of horses and wagon and stayed one night and two days, I think. We felt like pioneers and had a wonderful time camping out, cooking on a campfire and sleeping in the wagon.  I remember when Mom and Dad scouted ahead to find the best route for the wagon, he let me “drive” the team following them.  I guess that was one of the highlights of the trip for me.  I had never driven a two horse team, only one horse.

We always liked to go watch the floods in the washes the other side of where we lived. One time we heard the flood water and Mom and us four kids went to see it.  There wasn’t any water in the first wash so we crossed and went to the next one and there was a lot of water there.  After a while we started home but found that water had come in the first wash, and we were stuck between the washes as they were running very full. After we didn’t return home, Dad came to see what was keeping us and found our predicament and went and got the horse to get us home.


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