Sunday, September 11, 2016

Little Did He Know

Who once said that if he had his way he would make the plow boy know more about the Bible than the Pope?
a.                  William Tyndale
b.                  Martin Luther
c.                   Joseph Smith
d.                  Brigham Young
Yesterday’s answer:
(C)   The cutting of hay in a local meadow
Ephraim, Utah 1925:   To the west and north was an extensive natural meadow from which hay could be harvested. Right to the use of this meadow before it was possible to secure legal title thereto was determined in an interesting manner and with the desire to have all share equally. It was agreed that no one should cut hay in the meadow until after midnight on the evening of July 25. Everyone who wished to cut some hay would naturally desire to get it where it was most accessible and of the best quality. Accordingly there was a premium attached to getting on the ground first. A community dance would be held until twelve o’clock, when all would yoke up their oxen and make a dash for the hayfield.
   There was, however, always this provision—each man, without any assistance should cut a swath with the scythe around the hay which he desired. But he must not encircle more than he could cut, single handed, in one day. For if there was any left standing at the close of the day, anyone could come in and take it without interference. After the first day there were no restrictions. 
   This meadow was about equidistant from three settlements, so that intercommunity rights had to be established. Accordingly, one of the Apostles of the Mormon Church came out from Salt Lake City and acted as a judge in deciding the area which should belong to each community.  
   Sometime later it was decided to allot the right to this land to the individuals in the respective towns as had been done with the other farm lands. The meadow was two miles in length and sufficient by the other dimensions to allow each man a “frontage” of three rods. As a result each farmer had a piece of meadow three rods wide by two miles long. This meadow was subsequently ruined by the diversion of waters higher up the valley. The present yield of hay is very low and in very dry years practically nothing. Furthermore, a few men own most of the meadow.

Lowry Nelson, The Mormon Village (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1952), 138-139.

No comments:

Post a Comment