Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Tour of America Day #3

We attended church in a lovely ward not far from Kirtland. 
We then headed to actual Kirtland and  started our day at the Temple. 
 The grounds were beautiful and we had a nice time walking around and enjoying them. 
During the tour, I was continuously in awe at the amount of manual labor that was required to build such a sacred building. The saints were aware of the sacred nature of what they were constructing and were willing to give of there time and talents.  It is different today when a temple or church is built. The church is obviously in a vastly different financial situation and of course there is the advancement of technology that allows for greater ease in construction. I love the temple and the peace I feel there when I attend or sometimes just think of it. But, I have to wonder if I would hold it even more sacred if I had to sacrifice more to enjoy such blessings, as these early saints did. 

 A lovely family from Chicago took this for us. 
 These kids are my world. 

They each wanted a picture- okay mostly the girls and I asked the boys to take one too. 
 The Newell K Whitney store was really interesting. I love how they have worked to preserve it. And to think of the revelation that took place there, was incredible. 
 There is a book there of people that made purchases and I found one of my ancestors- Albert Miner. I wish I would have taken a few minutes to search for a few others. Seeing his name there (I actually guided Jon in finding it) I felt something of a connection to this place. My ancestors walked here, worked here, lived here; this is a part of my story. 
 After we had a great tour of some other Kirtland sites and took different kids to the bathroom at different times at least a dozen times, we went to the Isaac Morley Farm. 
 Peter had felt really strongly that we should go here. It is a short mile or so up the road from Kirtland (or what we as members think of as Kirtland). As the sister missionary was explaining who Isaac Morely was and what his role in the early days of the church was, she talked of a time after they had left Kirtland and were in Nauvoo. She spoke of an attack when some men were killed defending their homes including Edmond Durfee- my ancestor (Albert Miner's father-in-law). It was surreal to hear an ancestors name mentioned.  Then I suddenly remembered that when the Durfees and Miners moved to Kirtland they had lived on some land that was offered to saints and yes, you are right it was the Morley farm. 
There was once a school house a ways up from here and general conference was held there. 
Below is a picture of the field (all the way to the trees off in the distance) where Isaac Morley offered newly arriving saints to settle. I am grateful for his generosity.  

 We were so glad to have made it to the Johnson farm just in time to get a tour. 
This home was so beautiful and truly a fine house. Again, I am in awe at the generosity and hospitality of people at this time. I don't think this was something that was only common to the saints of the church but I would think it true of people of other walks of life. I do know that there were people that were constantly driving the saints from place to place so it was not common to everyone.  I do wonder if this same characteristic of sharing what we have and using it to support a good cause is as powerful in people now as it was then. 
I could not get over the size of these hydrangeas. So big and so beautiful!  
We drove past some Amish farms! It was so much fun to see! 
Being as it was Sunday, there were several farms we passed that were having large parties/gatherings and so there were tons of buggies parked next to each other and a whole lot of people in black and plain blue and purple dresses. And the buggies on the road and the buggy sign (a bit blurry below). There are supposed to be some great Amish restaurants in the area but they are closed on Sunday-so sad!  

 We started the day in Ohio, drove through part of Pennsylvania and made it to New York.
 We stayed that night in Niagara Falls, New York. 

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