Heritage Park dedicates the Emery Cabin
The Emery County Cabin at This Is The Place Heritage Park was dedicated on June 20 at 2 p.m. Nearly 100 people gathered to watch the dedication of the cabin that was built between 1879 and 1882 and was the home of pioneer Casper Christensen. The modest one-room cabin served as the official post office of both Muddy Creek and Quitchupah, which both consolidated to become the present town of Emery. The cabin was relocated from Muddy Creek to Emery in the 1920s; in 2004 it was donated to This is The Place Heritage Park. In conjunction with the dedication, the park held Emery County Day, where Emery County residents were granted free admission for the festivities.
The dedication ceremonies were held in the park's Relief Society Hall, where an overflow crowd heard from several descendents of Casper Christensen. Jennifer Jackson played a violin that belonged to her great-grandfather Isaac Allred, who was a son-in-law of Christensen. Allred had played the exact violin notably for Joseph Smith, prior to Smith's death. The dedication moved outside under favorable weather to the cabin where Ellis Allred, Christensen's great-great-grandson, dedicated it.
The Utah Home Builder's Association adopted the building through This is The Place Foundation's "Adopt-a-Home" program. HBA helped reconstruct and provide assistance to the renovation of the frontier post office. In addition to a post office, the structure served as the town's doctor office, school, and meetinghouse. Due to its historical multi-purpose, it will serve as home to the parks interpretive potter. This entry will be the Park's first entry from Emery County.
Carolyn Allred was present at the dedication and said, "My husband Ellis V. Allred is from Heber City. He is a descendent a great-great-grandson of Casper Christensen and he gave the dedicatory prayer. Jennifer Jackson (also a great-great- granddaughter) who played the old (original) violin that Isaac Allred played for the Prophet Joseph Smith. They also have a printed copy of the dedicatory prayer. There was a large group who attended the dedication and many were from Emery County."
Ellis V. Allred is a great- grandson of Casper Christensen and was asked to dedicate the cabin. Casper was the first white settler on the Muddy, which eventually became the town of Emery, where Ellis lived the first 18 years of his life. The violinist, Jennifer Lewis Jackson, a great-great-grand daughter, played, 'A Poor Wayfaring Man of Grief,' on an old (original) violin which, at one time, entertained the prophet Joseph Smith.
In his remarks prior to the dedication, Brother Allred asked those in attendance to compare the advantages of this log cabin to the humble dug-out, previously used by the Christensen family. Going one step farther, he suggested that we compare this one room cabin to the homes each one lives in today. Those differences provided many reasons why those industrious and hard working pioneers sacrificed so much. It was their desire to give to their descendants the improvements we have in our lifestyle and homes of today.
Casper Christensen left his homeland in Denmark after joining the LDS Church. They came as immigrants on the tall ships that transported them and so many others, who had dreams of a new and better life in the United States.
Allred in his dedication of the cabin said: "We meet today descendants and friends of Casper Christensen and a handful of Pioneer Saints who settled Muddy Creek in the early 1880s. We meet to honor them and to dedicate this small cabin in memory of their pioneer spirit and sacrifices. We are grateful to those who recognized the significance of this pioneer cabin and cared enough to brIng about the restoring of it in this Pioneer Park. We pray that those efforts will continue.
"We focus today on the many faces and the lives it played a part in. Being a home, a post office, a school, a meeting house, a doctor's office, a Bishop's office and a community gathering place. Oh, what stories these walls might tell if they could speak.
"We dedicate it to be a source of information and history to be added to and enjoyed through the years to come. For all those who visit here. For we know how important this history is. It was the faith of Casper Christensen and others that drove him to be instrumental in building a strong community, and a better life in this new land and to help all of us to have a vision of the country we want to create.
"May each of us follow the example of these industrious, hard working people, in doing our part to make a better life for our posterity.
"We bless it that it will be protected and preserved through time for generations to come to be a reminder of our pioneer ancestor's sacrifices for all those who have followed them.
"We bless the ground and structure that it will be a place of comfort and peace to those who come seeking solace and quiet that the spirit may be nourished by attending this piece of property," said Allred.