Peter Andrew Jensen was born in Parowan, Utah, Iron County, Utah
on April 14, 1867. His father
was sent to Parowan to help the early settlers there. Farming and ranching were
part of Peter's early life and he became skilled in the art of survival. Those
close to him commented on his kind personality and his great sense of humor.
Peter married Georgina Larsen in Richfield, Utah on November 11, 1896 (by Theodore
Bradley). Witnesses were Simon and Annie Larsen. Someone gave Peter a player
"I invited all the neighborhood kids over for a
for a street dance. Maude would be inside the
house pumping the piano while the rest of us
enjoyed ourselves outside in the front yard dancing.
Aunt Clara Jensen.
Farm life in Richfield was good. The Jensen family was self sufficient. Their
home had a well stocked root cellar just below the dining room. Many things were
stored there including a 25 gallon drum filled with sawdust and apples from their
apple trees. They made soap, buttermilk, grew their own corn, sewed their own
clothier and did everything else a frontier family is required to do to survive.
The hogs were fed skim milk mixed with bran. Some raw milk was kept out for the
The children turned cream into butter. This was a hard chore the kids did by
turning the handle on the churn. Some of the butter was sold. Eggs were collected
"I would be sent to Model's store to get
something like essence of coffee. It was traded
for one dozen eggs. The folks would give me one
extra egg, which I was then able to trade for candy."
Aunt Clara Jensen
Water was heated on the stove once a week for baths. The family had a big,
round porcelain wash tub with two handles, one on each side to make it easier
to dump. It would be filled with water, and two people had to use the same
bath water before it was refilled. Wood was hauled in for the cold winters;
cedar for the cook stove and pinewood for heating. They had a mattress with
heavy ticking. It had an opening in the middle. They would sometimes take out
the old straw and throw it away. New straw (thrashed wheat) was put in to replace
it. The kids loved to play on it because it was so soft. The Jensen's cured their
own hams. A hole was dug and a certain type of wood was used for the smoking.
One day Peter and Willis were out gathering wood in the cedars and kicked up
some baby coyotes. They took four home. The pups were mean at first, but soon as
they were touched, they became tame. They eventually were sold for a bounty of $6.00
"When I was about five (1915), Dad made a try at
Cove Fort. There was a water problem there; it had
to be purchased for 25 cents a gallon. We raked
the ground, but never planted.
The Jensen family moved from Richfield to McCormick on January 11, 1920,
They attended the Onidah Ward, Millard Stake. Peter was ordained an elder
in the LDS church by T. Clark McCallister on April 29, 1928 at the age of
51. that same year he was called to serve as the first assistant in the Sunday
School Presidency. In McCornick, nobody ever had to lock their doors. Everyone
liked to dance. At one costume dance, Peter Jensen dressed up with cowbells
attached to his clothes and went as "the bell of the ball". He won first prize.
Peter did not speak in Danish, but Georgina did.
"Everyone called Peter 'pa' and thought he was the
greatest, Georgina adored him. He sometimes performed
and told Uncle Josh Stories"
Aunt Clara Jensen
The men in the family did prospecting and had some claims. Father Peter Jensen
was a miner and a farmer. He found clay with special properties. If a tree were
dying, you could put this clay on it, and it would pick up. Plants in a hospital
window grew when the clay was applied, but not without it. It was sold for car wax.
A drought hit McCornick. This is why the Jensen's', and others,
"Our first car was a model T. Ma raised turkeys to pay
for it. Dad went out the first day to train himself.
As he sped down the road he saw one of the neighbors
plowing his field. Pa looked over and yelled hi, taking
his eyes off of the road. When he looked up he was heading
for a ditch. He yelled "Whoa!" The car kept on going. The
farmer unhitched his horse and pulled Pa's car out of the
Uncle Boyd Jensen
Peter mounted barrels on the sides of the Model so they could
get water from the neighbors artesian wells. The Jensen's raised hundreds
of wild turkeys. The turkeys were let go in the morning and stayed
away until nightfall. Peter made an adobe house for them, to keep the
One morning one of the mature pigs got caught in a fence. Peter
ran to get him loose and the ungrateful pit bit off his fingernail.
When Georgina needed flour, Peter would take a sack of wheat to the
mill and grind it.