There shall none come into this land save they shall be brought by the hand of the Lord. Wherefore, this land is consecrated unto him whom he shall bring. And if it so be that they shall serve him according to the commandments which he hath given, it shall be a land of liberty unto them...
One bright May morning in the early eighties, mother, my brother Nathan Jr., and myself left so called merry England for Utah. Mother had sold all the goods and chattels she wanted to sell, and some not being saleable, she gave them away or left them in the house for others to use. However, Mother had some nice China tea sets and some Dresden ware and other brick-a-brack that she neither would sell or give away and other heirlooms that were dear to the heart of English women.[Biographical sketch of Percy Groom, courtesy of the LDS Church History Library.]
Things went well at the start. We boarded the good ship Wisconsin at Liverpool and with about 300 other emigrating Saints from Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Germany, Holland and other parts of the British Isles. We started across the mighty deep. The old ship was a rather rickety tub and it was in the habit of twisting, yawning, squeaking and groaning as it made its way against the buffeting of the waves, but the Saints were going to Zion, and they made the welkin ring with their Mormon songs. Strange, but all these nationalities could sing the piece; that is the tune was the same, but the words were expressed differently. But what lacked in unison of words, they made up in the rendition of such songs as: “Come, Come ye Saints,” “We Thank Thee Oh God for a Prophet,” and “Israel, Israel God is Calling,” etc.
The trip was quite exciting seeing whales, porpoises and other marine animals and birds. It is strange how long a flock of seagulls will follow a ship and keep up with it without resting a spell. Some thirty large icebergs were seen on the way as May is a good time to cross if one wants to see these dull, silent, gray piles of arctic glaciers as they majestically float down from Greenland and eventually melt in the Gulf Stream. One large pile of ice had as a passenger a polar bear. This boy was no doubt beyond his depths, as when the iceberg melted, which it surely would do, then the bear would be without a footing and while very clever in water, they have to come up for breathing, and eventually the poor bear would become a victim of its own thoughtlessness. It took a total of thirty days to cross the Atlantic.
The immigrant passengers on the ship Wisconsin crowded the deck, everyone pushing to the rail jostling one another to get their first glimpse of America. Mother[s] lifted their small children to a better vantage point. The Statue of Liberty lifted her torch to the new residents entering New York Harbor. Each member of the family read the inscription on the base of the giant lady which reads, in part: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teaming shore, send these the homeless, tempest tossed, to me. I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”
My mother never thought that Uncle Sam [would be] so keen nosed to search through her baggage. They spied the sets of china, the Dresden plate and other brick-a-brack and immediately put the usual tariff charges against it. This placed her in a position to either leave her precious goods in the hands of the government or pay the charges; she chose the latter. However, this almost cleaned her out of our passage money to buy food from New York to Salt Lake City. After shelling out to Uncle Sam, she had in American money the sum of $1.96 to keep herself and two boys in food from the American metropolis to Zion.
Customs completed, we made our way to Grand Central Station in New York to board the train for the four day trip to Utah. With good Scotch thrift, mother made the $1.96 go as far as it could, but even then our food consisted of water from the tap, bread, and canned meat. The train journey seemed long and our meager rations dwindled to none. No more food became available until the morning after our arrival in Buttlerville Bench, east of Murray, Utah. I was so hungry and my stomach hurt so badly I was unable to sleep my first night in Zion.The family had been separated in part for two years, but now their journey to Utah was complete and so was the family....
By Elspeth C. Young
the story in this painting
the creation of this paintingOriginal artworks produced by the Artists of Al Young Studios are part of themed collections because the Studios is organized after the pattern of the Renaissance workshops of the old masters. The Artists take the long view of their work as being a lifetime journey toward mastery of artistic expression through selected techniques, reaching as far back as the 16th century. Artists work as peers in an intensely creative community in which each artist pursues his or her own work as part of the group's philosophy... Read more »
By Al R. Young This blank-book journal sells for $32 (plus shipping) direct from Al Young Studios. Printed in full color on heavy paper, the book is bound with black plastic spiral to rest flat when open.
In Their Footsteps: A Personal Journal features 29 original artworks consisting of 18 original oil paintings from the Artists of Al Young Studios, 2 images from the Studios' Limited Editions Collection, four artworks from Ashton' private portfolio, and five pencil drawings from Al's private portfolio... Read more »
By Al R. Young Sweet Land Of Liberty is the newest oil painting to be added to the line of original artworks from Al Young Studios.
Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of prints--if any are available.... Read more »
By Al R. Young
We have framed our own artworks for more than 25 years, and during that time we have provided a variety of framing services to patrons upon request. For various reasons--including constant change in the availability of moulding styles--we cannot offer off-the-shelf framing options or response times typically associated with such a service. Of necessity, all of our framing projects are custom projects that are priced, completed, and billed accordingly. For example, inasmuch as the Studios does not maintain a selection of off-the-shelf moulding options, moulding styles actually available at the time of a request for information about framing options must be researched... Read more »