My Ancestral Legacy
Telitha page 1
My Cooper Legacy

Telitha Elizabeth Pattison


I Carried a Gun
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
    This part of my life I do not wish to recall, but as it is did happen, I must include some of these things. My husband was an honest man and trying to help others by testifying in court against a gang or mob of cattle rustlers. He became a man that was hated by the rustlers and was hunted by them with an intent to kill him. This was the situation for the fifteen years in which I carried a gun and was there to protect him against this bloodthirsty mob for these many years. I lived under this dread, fearing for his life at all times. We had lived for ten years in Arizona before I felt safe, for they had threatened
that they would follow us to Arizona and kill him. Any time a strange man came up to ask for Mr. Cooper, this old fear again comes to me.
    Story after story could be told in connection with this part of my life that would be more hair raising than any wild west Indian story that you might see or read. I will tell just a bit and leave the rest untold.
   Jim Drawdy often said, "If it wasn't for that Little Devil (as he called me) I could get Eli."


"She Never Missed"
By Nellie N. Olsen Ostler
    "I can remember that when my Mother, Libbie, told these stories to me, that she always said that Telitha had always accompanied Eli wherever he went. I pondered on the fact that he drove all the time and she "rode shotgun". Thinking it would have been more natural for Grandpa to have handled the gun, I asked why Grandma always had the gun, leaving the driving to Grandpa. My mother, Libbie simply said: "She was the best shot. She never missed .... and everyone knew it."
 
 
He Lost Most of His Ear
By Telitha E. Pattisoil Cooper
   One day Mr. Cooper was to tend to some business in Eustis. The sheriff had brought Mr. Cooper and Drawdy and his mob together to go to court. We were at the place of meeting of the court, and thinking he would be all right because he was in the hands of the law, Mr. Cooper told me to go on to my sister's place, while he took care of this business.
   At all times I carried my gun with me, but this time as I saw no danger, I left it in the buggy and went some 100 yards away in an upstairs room where my sister lived.
   Upon arriving there, I heard a commotion outside and ran to the upstairs porch. There below on the street, I saw my husband in the hands of the mob.
    After I had left, the sheriff had walked some distance from Mr. Cooper for some reason, allowing Drawdy and his men to try to get Mr. Cooper. Well, upon seeing this commotion, I was so excited my feet simply flew, and how I got down those stairs, I know not. I was running as fast as I could to get to the buggy and get my gun. As I ran, I heard the sheriff yell, "Catch her or there will be a lot of people killed."
    I succeeded in getting to the wagon, but they caught me before I got my gun. It was then that Dr. Reed stepped out from among the crowd watching and yelled, "Eli, come out of there."
    At that, the men unpiled somewhat and Mr. Cooper came crawling, bleeding from under them.
    At this point the sheriff wanted to make me feel good, so he said he would bet on me in any horse race and knew I would be the winner. He tried to tease me, but I was mad at the sheriff He was helping Jim Drawdy and I knew it, in spite of him trying to joke me.
    In the fight, Jim Drawdy had bit most of Mr. Cooper's ear off. He had also chewed his hand up quite badly. I got him to the doctor as soon as I could. The Doctor had taken care of his ear, but his hand was not cared for as yet, and he was bleeding badly. It was at this point the doctor saw Jim Drawdy and his mob coming toward his office. Everyone seemed afraid of Jim.
    The doctor only had Mr. Cooper's hand wrapped over a bit, but he hurriedly stuck us in a back room. He then took Jim and the men that were with him into the room in front that we had been. The Dr. took care of Jim's needs and after he was gone on his way, he finished with Mr. Cooper.
     The doctor was afraid of Drawdy and his men. Even the man that Mr. Cooper testified for did not dare to help him for fear of Jim Drawdy


Things that go Bump in the Night
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
   I often sat on guard with a gun in hand, while Mr. Cooper got his needed sleep. One night as I sat at my post on watch, I could hear a bump, then a bump in another place. I was sure some of the gang was right at the house, ready to attack. I took my gun and going to see what it was all about, found that some chickens were roosting under the house on a board that was balanced on something.
   They all wanted to be on the highest part and as they walked from one end of the board to the other, the end they were not on, went up and bumped tile house. Then as the chicken proceeded to the other higher end, the board would bump in another place on the floor of the house.
   But it was not like this always; no not at all, for in reality they came and tried in many ways to kill him.
 
 
They Were Really Out There
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
   Another night, all being dark, but I was at my post with a gun in my hand, the hunting dogs that were locked up just roared. Something was wrong. There was one hunting dog, that was out. As I stepped out on the porch, gun in hand, to see what the trouble was, she came to me. I lowered my hand to rest on her back. She was growling softly and deep in her throat, and as she did, the hair on her back raised to a standing position. This I felt with my hand resting on her. As this happened, ! strained my eyes to search and see if I could see anything and one by one, I saw figures with guns coming into the walk leading to the house. I raised my gun and fired it. They left in a hurry and did not bother us again that night.
   The beds were moved from place to place every day, so the mob would not know just were Mr. Cooper was sleeping. At night the lamps were always put next to the window, with the shades drawn. That way no shadow would fall on the window shades. They were never able to be out at night to see the stars, moon, anything. At all times, no one outside the house was to be able to know where anyone inside the house was.


I Hurried Back Home
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
    One time I was on my way to my sister Mamie's house. I was in a buggy driving Buckskin, a balky horse. I had my two babies, Libbie and Mentie with me. I entered a stream in the road, and the horse just stopped in the middle of the stream. To add to the frightening situation, there in the road ahead was Jim Drawdy and his mob heading straight for me. I was so afraid I was frozen to the buggy, as if I could do anything much else. Jim being in the lead, rode out into the water right up to the buggy and putting his
foot out onto the wheel said, "By G__, Lizzie, are you stuck?"                     
     I could not speak because I was so frightened. He shouted to his men, "By G__,
Lizzie is stuck. Come on men, let's help her out." So saying, they got behind and in front of the horse and got the horse, buggy and me and my babies out of the stream. So doing, they went through the stream and on their way.
     But I could not go on to my sister's. No! They were headed in the direction of my home and Mr. Cooper, and they knew I (the Little Devil) was not there. So 1 whirled the buggy around and headed for home as fast as I could go, on another route. Jim Drawdy did not show up that day for which I was thankful.


The First Time I Ever Heard of a Mormon

by Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
    When I was eight years old, my parents moved from Georgia to Florida. In about a year after we moved, Mama received a letter from Georgia telling her that her best friend had been stolen by a Mormon Elder and carried to Utah to be one of Brigham Young's slave wives.
   My! What a commotion things were in. It worried us kids so much that we asked questions to see what it was all about.
     They told us there was a man who lived away out west in Utah. He sent young men out to entice young women to go to Utah with them. Then they would take them to this man, Brigham Young, who had hundreds of wives and sat on a stump with a big long whip and made them do the work. This friend of Mama's, Mrs. Maddox, had been stolen and carried out west.
     About 20 years later when I was converted to Mormonism and my husband and I came west, we saw Mrs. Maddox. We didn't see any of the signs left from the whippings by Brigham Young, nor did she ever tell us about it, because it never happened. She was just as strong in the faith as anyone and lived the Gospel in its purity.
 
 
A Visitation from My Mother
by Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
    One night Elder Lewis and Elder Tate were at our home and we talked on the principles of the Gospel. I was very much concerned and in earnest to know just what was right.
    When I lay down to sleep that night, I did not realize that I had my eyes closed when I looked out and saw my mother. Now Mama had been dead for some time. She was dressed in a white robe and white cloth shoes, and seemed to be floating in the air toward me. I ran out to meet hear. She looked just as natural as if she was still alive. She handed me a package and said, "Read and obey!" I took the package and looked at it. When I looked up again, she was gone.
    I opened the package and it was a cup turned upside down in a saucer. This cup and saucer was trimmed in red and yellow roses with green leaves, just such as was the fad at that time to give for birthday and Christmas presents. Under the cup was a note. I lifted up the cup and read, "These men are messengers from our Heavenly Father. Obey their council."
    I awoke and found I was still on the bed. Seeing my mother was so real. I pondered over this. I had heard the gospel that these men had taught and was convinced that it was the true gospel, but I had never been baptized. I did not feel as though I had lived as good a life as I should have, so I felt that this was a warning to me. I was a heavy coffee drinker. Coffee had been introduced to me as a premature baby before any other food. I stopped drinking coffee and prepared myself for baptism.
    The next morning I told these Elders my dream. They encouraged me to live the Gospel and prepare myself for baptism. They never urged anyone into baptism, they only urged them to live the Gospel in its purity.
    Telitha's daughter, Nellie C. Cooper Roger adds:
    "At the age of 89 she remembers this warning and drinks no coffee. Even though doctors have prescribed for her to drink coffee she still refused to take up the habit again."
    "Her body needed the stimulant in the caffeine but she felt that to take coffee would break her covenant because she had never lost her craving for it, therefore to drink it, even for medical purposes, she knew she would enjoy it and pick up the habit again, and then that would be breaking her covenant with God she made at baptism. So she took caffeine pills instead."
 
 
The Elder Was Not Alone
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
    One time a mob came to our door, calling for Mr. Cooper. The Elders were with us, and as I started for the door with my gun, as I always did when someone asked for Mr. Cooper, the Elders would not let me go this time. Elder Brodrick brought me back into the room and then he went to face the mob, talking with them.
    We all prayed, Mr. Cooper, myself, and Thomas and the other Elder. He returned to the house, and the mob went away. I asked him if he was not afraid, and he said, "No, I was not afraid for I was not alone. I had company. The Lord was with me." Surely the
Lord answered our prayers and cared for these Elders who were preaching the true Gospel of Jesus Christ.
    These Mormon missionaries often went hungry before returning to our home because there was no one that would take them in and feed them as they traveled, until they returned to us.


Which Road Do We Take?
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
   When the Mormon Elders came in, we both began to investigate because we were not satisfied with any religion that we had heard. All of these churches were afraid of what might happen, so they all united. First we would have one minister for dinner and then another, all trying to prove that Mormonism was false. Naturally this made us very humble and prayerful, so we might be lead to know which was really the right church.
    Among these ministers was one who claimed to have the spirit of interpretation, like Joseph of old. From childhood he had interpreted my dreams.
    One night after a great deal of hard study and prayer to find out which was the right way, I went to sleep and dreamed that my husband and I were standing on a hill about two miles from our home and there were four roads leading down the hill. Each one leading to a different church. One of the roads was a beautiful white sandy road and the others were not traveled so much. I said to my husband, "Which one of these roads shall we take?"
     He said, "Take hold of my arm and we will go where ever our feet carry us." I took hold of his arm and our feet seemed to carry us over the broad white sandy road. We walked up to the little church. There we were met by two Mormon Elders and they made us feel welcome. Here I awoke from the dream.
     My husband and I talked it over. We prayed and were very humble. We were fully converted that it was the right church. Yet, we were desirous to know how this one minister would interpret the dream.
     He came to see us again within a few days and spent the night. After supper, while we were still sitting around the table, I told him my dream, all except that I with held the name of the church to which our feet took us.
     Then I asked him to interpret it for us. He said it was too plain to interpret because it was already interpreted for us. The church we went to was of course the right church. Then I asked him which church he thought we went to. He said, "Why, the Primitive Baptist, of course."
     Then I told him that it was the house where the Mormon Elders held their meetings that our feet had carried us. He immediately stood up and with heavy gestures said, "You should never follow your feet, but follow your heart."
     Our minister friend tried for hours that night to prove to us that Mormonism was not right, but it seemed that all of his statements turned out wrong and he could not gain his point because we were fully convinced and Satan had no power over us.


Light After the Dark

by Telitha E. Pallison Cooper
   I feel that if we had not been the only ones who would take in the Elders and they had not of stayed with us so much and spent so much time explaining and teaching us the Gospel, I would not have been converted, at least not then. Every time I go into a dark room and turn on a light, I think of the Gospel. I was as in a dark room before I heard the Gospel and after I had heard and accepted it, I was in a lighted room. I was in darkness so long.


A Special Story
   This next story about my grandmother being healed from advanced cancer has always been a special story to me. This story is why I wrote this book. I wanted you to have it.
   There have been many times that I remembered this story and remembered that if God could restore the health of an obscure woman in the Piney Woods of Florida, through her faith and the priesthood of a young elder on a mission, then a like miracle was my inheritance if I had faith.
   As I have grown in faith, God has given me many miracles in my life. And I want you to know that as her great grandchild or great-great grandchild, you too have miracles as your inheritance.
   When you believe that God will bless you and answer your prayers, He will. Sometimes it takes us awhile to be able to understand that the blessing he gives us, the miracle he gives us is perfect for us. If you continue in your belief and faith in God, you will be thrilled at all the miracles in your life. It is your inheritance.
I love you, Grandma Ostler (Nellie).


A Miraculous Healing
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
   There was a band of gypsies that came through our part of the country. The Elders had taught us that we should not have our fortunes told. Instead, we should have our Patriarchal Blessings from the Patriarch of the Mission. But the Gypsies insisted and finally told parts of my husband's past. They told it so straight and so many things that only he knew that he thought they really must know the truth. I decided that maybe I would have my fortune told.
    They began to tell me my past, but they got it all mixed up. They told me my Papa was dead. Instead, Mama was dead and Papa was still alive. Then, they told me my husband's first wife's back life for mine. This made me very indignant and I told them so. So, they then proceeded to tell me my future. They told me my husband didn't love me, that he only married me for conveniency sake. They then said that I would be stricken and through carelessness and indifference on the part of my husband I would only live five years, if I lived that long. They continued to tell me many unnecessary things that made me feel very bad.
   In the near future, my right breast became very sore. I went to the doctor and he told me there was nothing to be concerned about. In about six months my right breast was the size two should have been. I began to ponder over what the gypsies had said. My husband took me to four different physicians who pronounced it a cancer that was too far gone to operate.
    Our old family physician wrote to a cancer specialist describing the case in full. He received the same answer and said I could only last about six months longer. Imagine my feeling, with the words of the Gypsies ringing in my ears. Then the words of the Elders came to my mind that it was not right to have your fortune told. Then I thought of how wrong the Gypsies had been when telling me my past life. Why couldn't they be just as wrong about the future?
    We were a great distance from the mission headquarters and there were no patriarchs out there but that did not justify me in having the Gypsies tell me my fortune. With the greatest humility I knelt before my Heavenly Father and asked forgiveness. It was then that the thought came to me that there was the gift of healing in our church.
     I talked to my husband about it and told him I wanted to go to where the Elders were to be administered to. By this time, one side of my breast had bulged out in a large knot and a good portion of it had turned black.
     We thought I could go and 1 wrote to the Elders that I was coming to conference which they were holding in Jacksonville, Florida. I got all ready to go but when the time came, we could not get the money, so I couldn't go. The Elders met three different trains at Jacksonville, and wondered why I did not come.
     I was very disappointed, but I still had faith. I prayed sincerely that the Elders might be sent to me. I had perfect faith that if I could be administered to by the Elders, I could be healed no matter what the Gypsies had said. However, I had not told the Elders why I was coming to conference, so they did not know of my need and I could only pray that the Lord would send them to me.
     One day some time later, I looked out across the woods and saw two Mormon Elders coming. I was so happy that I went a ways to meet them. They were two Elders who had come straight from the conference at Jacksonville. They were being sent to a district further south in the state and as they were traveling without purse or script, they came by our house for entertainment. (In those day to go to a house for entertainment meant that you went to spend some time and to eat and possibly find a place to sleep that night.)
     I was overjoyed at their coming, but did not tell them at once of my secret. I prepared them a meal as they had walked thirty miles with nothing to eat. I knew they were hungry and I had always been taught that men could do better work when they had a full stomach.
     After supper, my husband and I told them that I wanted to be administered to that night. The youngest one, Elder Allred, was very excited and expressed himself that way. This had a tendency to weaken my faith for a few moments. But Elder Tate, who was very quiet and calm said, "Well, sister, we are very sorry you did not mention this to us before we ate. It is necessary to fast when anything as serious as this comes before us. We cannot administer to you tonight. But we will administer to you tomorrow after fasting.
     I felt very bad because I had made this mistake and did not know about the principle of fasting. I went to bed and I still felt that through the administration I could be healed. My husband and I talked about it. He said, "You know what the Gypsies said. I can't see any chance for you."
    The Elders administered to me just before dark the next day after a day of fasting. Elder Allred anointed and Elder Tate sealed the anointing. I prepared them a good meal and they left as they were supposed to meet some other Elders in their new district and must go on so they would not be late in arriving.
    The next morning as I was going to my sister's, which was two miles away, my breast hurt me as it had never hurt me before. It was so intense I thought I could not stand it any longer. The words of the Gypsies rang over and over in my mind. Then my husband's words of the night before, that he could see no chance for me, came to my mind. Then something in my mind stood up before me and mockingly said, "I knew it would do you no good. I knew you were doomed to die."
    I straightened up and said, "Get thee behind me, Satan!" Almost instantly my breast eased and it has never had such intense pain since. My breast was healed and I have had two children since. This was thirty years ago, and the words of the Gypsies have not come true yet.
    It was only through my faith in Jesus Christ and the power He has vested in his servants and my overcoming the evil spirit that tried to rob me of my blessing that 1 was healed.
This story was told and dated: March 20, 1932 at Mesa, Arizona
                                          Signed: Telitha Pattison Cooper

     Her daughter, Nellie Cooper Rogers, sent this note with the story: "This is December of the year 1963; over thirty one years since the above story, "A Miraculous Healing" was written. Over sixty one years have passed since the Elders healed our dear Mother and grandmother and she is still here to inspire and watch her posterity grow, and she is now ninety years of age.
    Since she came to Arizona, she obtained three Patriarchal Blessings; copies of these her daughters have. In these blessings are mentioned her long life: "With the blessing of a long life even until you are satisfied with life." "Your days shall be lengthened upon the land for you shall live as long as life is desirable."
    We, her posterity are also mentioned in these blessings: "You shall rear up a posterity that will look upon you as a mother in Israel and call you blessed." "Thy posterity shall be numbered and as to the increase thereof there shall be no end. Thy sons shall be mighty men in the Priesthood and thy daughters shall be women of renown. Thy children shall be great comfort unto thee. They shall rise up and call thee blessed." "The Lord has prepared for you an inheritance in the Celestial Kingdom and none shall receive greater honor when brought forth in the morning of the First Resurrection to be crowned a queen over your posterity forever."
    As this beautiful Christmas season draws near, she wants to wish you, her children, grand children, great grandchildren and second great grandchildren, a MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR. Her prayers are continually for your faithfulness in the Gospel and your happiness."


UTAH
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
   As we came to Salt Lake City and got off at the depot, we were greeted by a man who seemed to think we needed direction to a cheap hotel. "No use paying a high price for lodging." So we went with him and the hotel he took us to was surely not much. This man had a room right across the hall from us and as Mr. Cooper went out to get us some groceries, he came in to intrude on us. When Mr. Cooper returned and was told about this man, he did not leave us again, but remained with us.
   As we returned to the depot we met a lady whom I asked about the Latter Day Saints here. She said, "Oh, yes! I was a Mormon once." She offered to take us to see the President of the Church. As we neared the President's home, I could see him in an upstairs window. But the doorkeeper said he was busy dressing. We asked if we could wait and see him, but she said, "Oh he is too busy a man for that." It was quite a blow to me, but later I realized that this lady whom I was with was an apostate from the Church, and that the President knew her and had nothing to say to her. However, he did not know me, but only the company whom I was with.


ARIZONA
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
   We bought 20 acres on South Home in Mesa, Arizona, only it wasn't South Home then, it was Home Evans Lane or more commonly called Muddy Lane. It was continually flooded with irrigation water.
   Thomas, Mr. Cooper and I built our new home. It was 12 by 21 feet, a two room house. By the time we got the house up we had a well dug. Water was about 12 feet under the ground at that spot. Later we built on two more rooms on the back. Porches were later added on the front and north sides. Later we added a kitchen on the south near the well.
   Dudley Lewis let us have 30 herd of cattle to milk. We milked them, separated and sold the cream, using the milk for hogs and chickens. When Dudley needed his cows, we gave them back, but he let us keep one cow. Then Mr. Cooper got a milk route. With wagon and team he collected milk from ranchers and delivered it to the creamery.
   It was not until later when the cotton came to be raised here in Arizona that we could make enough money and was able to raise (or pay off) the mortgage on our place and finish paying for it.
   I helped all I could by washing, ironing, picking cotton, sewing and anything I could get to do to pay the taxes and payments on the place. I worked away from home quite a bit. I helped my sister, Mary Stinsen, in a home laundry she had, and I did housework for others.
We went out on the desert, to get mesquite wood for our stoves.
   There we killed Jack and Bunny rabbits and quail. The Jack and Bunny rabbits would come right up into the farms and eat the vegetables.


Church
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
   When we had received this wonderful light, the Gospel, and there was no place that we could attend Church nor Sunday School and continue to grow in it. With this thought in mind, together with the fifteen years of trouble we had been having with the mobs, we decided to go West where we would be free from the mobs and could enjoy the blessings of the Gospel.
   This was our first time in an organized ward, and we did not know what to expect. There was only one ward in the Mormon Church in Mesa. When we first arrived in Arizona, we went to Sunday School. We went for four Sundays and just sat all together, remaining where we first sat during the class period. The fourth time, Adelaid Peterson came up to us and asked us if we did not want to go to class. I told her yes, but that we did not know where to go. She showed us, and from then on we knew where to go.
 

Horses
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
    I have had many experiences as well as some broken bones driving horses and buggies.
   As a girl I never rode horses much. We had a gentle horse (Fred) or at least he was supposed to be gentle. One day Mama gave me some bundles to carry to Mrs. Morris. I was holding the reigns with one hand. The horse started to galloping and I dropped one bundle and then another. Fred didn't like that. The dropping bundles spooked him, so he kept galloping as I dropped one bundle after another.
   We always had a horse and buggy. If all of the family went, we went in the wagon. When I was big enough, I was always the one to go and hook up the horse to the wagon or buggy.
Mr. Cooper had one buggy horse and two saddle horses that he also used to plow with. He was a cattle man.
   When we came to Arizona, we got two horses, Molly and Dolly. Dudley Lewis bought them for us. Later Mr. Cooper bought Prince and Old Gray to do the heavy work. Fannie (a brown horse) was the balking horse.
   I took the buggy and horse and went to the schoolhouse to get the children when it was muddy. Of course there were no school busses in those days.
    I also visited the sick and needy this way also, as well as shopping, or anything else that was my job to do.
 
. . . And the Winner is . . .Telitha!!!
   Johnny Scott lived down the lane from us. ! surely did have swell times racing him down the road. We would challenge each other most of the time when we met. Other times we would set it up ahead of time.
I was always the winner, you may be sure.
I was way past 30 years of age when I did this
 

Horse and Buggy Accidents
By Telitha E. Pattison Cooper
   I was coming from Dana's on Chandler Road one day, when a car approached from the opposite direction. Now there were no cars to speak of at this time, and the lights from this car shined under the buggy and scared the horse. He jumped to one side, throwing me out into the ditch by the side of the road. The horses' hind hips landed on me, breaking my collar bone. The car stopped as quickly as possible and came to our assistance. They wanted to take me to the hospital, but I had them take me home. Libbie took the horse and buggy back to Dana's. Dr. Drain came and set my shoulder.
   Another time when Papa (my father) was here, I turned the buggy too sharply and it turned over, hurting me. Papa jumped clear and it did not hurt him
 

Fannie
By Libbie E. Cooper Olsen
   Mother and I had been to town. Mama had bought a mattress. We tied the mattress to the back of the buggy seat. We were driving Fannie (the balky horse). While I was getting the mail, Fannie turned to give Mama the wicked look she always did when she was going to balk. In looking back she saw the mattress. It spooked her. Fannie took off for home in a big run. Mama was yelling "Whoa, Whoa!" at the top of her voice and trying to do all she could to stop her. I was running after them yelling at the top of my voice. If anyone saw us, they never mentioned the hilarious scene we made.
 
My Ancestral Legacy
Telitha page 1
"My Cooper Legacy"