Ella Gladys Barker Anderson b. 3 Feb 1905, d. 19 July 1995

Ella Gladys Barker Anderson was a granddaughter of Jacob and Charlotte Bushman.  She was born on this day in 1905, the same day her mother Ella Isadora was born in 1884.  She is pictured below with her husband, Hugh Cheney Anderson and their first son, Robert Hugh Anderson who was born in 1926.

Hugh and Gladys with Bobby

Theodore Turley Family Book p. 523  (published in 1978):

I was born Feb. 3, 1905 in Fairview, Utah. I married Hugh Cheney Anderson on Sept. 2, 1925 in the Manti Temple. To this union was born five children.

I spent most of my childhood on the Barker farm north of Fairview where my mother, Ella, lived as a child, part of the time moving to Fairview in the winter time. Those were happy times. My mother would read to us and my father would sing. Every night was “family night.”

I started teaching Sunday School when I was 17 years old, and have taught in the organization most of my life. I graduated from high school, intending to go to college, but my mother had a very serious heart attack. The second time we almost lost her, so for the next three and one-half years I cared for my six brothers and my father and mother. I felt this was more of a blessing than a burden because besides being very fond of my brothers I felt I was better prepared for marriage than the average girl.

When Hugh Anderson and I were married we moved to Provo, Utah where he finished his schooling at BYU. Our children were all gifted musically, so we spent many wonderful times around the piano singing. My husband taught school and we have a small farm which is large enough to keep our four boys busy. Three of them have served in the armed forces, and one has served on a mission. All of our children are and have been active in the Church.

My greatest joy besides our family was working in the Manti Temple with my husband as ordinance workers for four years until my husband passed away Nov. 26, 1971. I am still working there. My hobbies are flowers and art-work painting. We have 21 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren.

Children of Ella Gladys Barker and Hugh Cheney Anderson:
Robert Hugh Anderson, born Oct. 26, 1926 in Provo, Utah
Ella Florine Anderson Nielson, born Sept. 22, 1928 in Rexburg, Idaho
Orrin Dale Anderson, born Nov. 22, 1930 in Fairview, Utah
John Carroll Anderson, born July 28, 1933 in Fairview
Terry Gene Anderson, born Dec. 22, 1937 in Fairview

anderson-ella-gladys-artist    barker-ella-gladys-with-horse

Life Sketch given by her son, Robert H. Anderson  
Ella Gladys Barker Anderson Funeral July 25, 1995

It is difficult to compress the highlights of a ninety year life into a ten minute life sketch and tribute. It is even more difficult to tell it to others when you have been very close to the person for nearly 69 years, but I will try. My mother, Ella Gladys Barker Anderson, was born on her mother’s 21st birthday February 3, 1905 in her grandfather’s bedroom at the home of her Aunt Sarah Fowles about three blocks from here. It was not planned to happen there but some things are difficult to schedule and over the next few years until his death, she and her Grandfather Bushman were great friends.

Her parents were Rufus Orrin and Ella Isadora Bushman Barker. She had one brother, Bazil, and would have five more in the next 12 years, but no sisters. About the time of her birth her parents bought a farm about three miles north of Fairview that had belonged to her Aunt Sarah but later became known as the Barker Farm and from the time she was about 3 1/2 years old until she was married, she lived on the farm except for a few months when her father found work in Salt Lake City and some winters when the family moved to Fairview usually when anticipating the arrival of a new baby. Mother lived in nine different homes in Fairview as she was growing up. There was no electricity, no telephone, and no running water or indoor plumbing but there was a lot of love in the two room log house on the farm. Her younger brothers were all born in town except her youngest brother, Eugene, who was born on the farm in the same log house in which his mother had been born in 1884.

When she became eight years of age, it was necessary for her to travel on the train to the Manti Temple to be baptized because it was winter and there was no suitable place available in Fairview.

She went to school in Fairview and Mt. Pleasant and was the next youngest graduate from North Sanpete High School in 1922 because she had been double promoted twice in elementary school. She was the first of all of the Barkers to graduate from high school. Being the only daughter, she decided against further education so that she could help her mother, who was suffering ill health. care for her younger brothers. She learned to be an excellent cook (nobody could make a more delicious lamb roast) and seamstress (she made most of her own clothes).

During the next year or so, she dated boys as is usual for teenage girls, and then she met and later married my father, Hugh Cheney Anderson on September 2, 1925 in the Manti Temple the same day that their friends, Cy and Ila Jensen, were married. Right after they were married they moved to Provo so that Dad could attend school at BYU. Dad encouraged Mother to take some Art and Interior Decorating classes and this was the beginning of her love for art. A sample of her pastel paintings can be seen across the street at the new museum. The picture there is her interpretation of how Indian Chief Walker looked. During this time in Provo, I was born in October 1926 and the year before, Dad bought his very first new car, a 1925 Model T Ford, for $500 and I have distinct memories of it and its tragic end in the mountains east of Fairview. It was a one seat roadster and Dad later made a pickup out of it which became useful to transport their Maytag washer from Rexburg to Fairview. The washing machine was their other major new possession and Dad had bought it to make washing my diapers easier for Mother. It served the family well for many years and one of my early chores was to drain it after mother had finished the wash.

It was just six weeks before I was born that Mother came back to the Barker Farm because her 11 year old brother, Wells, was very ill and while she was there he died. I never knew Wells but from all that I have heard and read about him, he was a fun loving boy like my other uncles whom I enjoyed very much.

After Dad finished school, we moved to Rexburg, Idaho for two years during which time my sister, Florine, was born and she has been my good friend ever since. We then moved to Fairview to the old Anderson Family home in which my father was born, just one block from the house where Mother was born five years after Dad. My three brothers, Dale, John, and Terry were all born there also and that is the place we all remember as home.

During all those years Mother sang or hummed as she worked around the house and we all learned to love music. Dad had taught himself to play the mandolin before he met mother while he was herding sheep alone in the west Utah desert and he usually accompanied us. Mother had a beautiful alto voice and Dad sang bass. Family gatherings, especially at the Barker Farm, always included a lot of singing because our uncles, aunts, and cousins could also make good music.


Besides sewing, Mother liked to crochet and she had learned to tat as a young girl. Now I don’t know what a camisole is but I understand that it was one of Mother’s favorite tatting projects. She also took great pleasure in growing flowers and had many around the house including my favorite, a Peace Rose outside the front porch. She had a real knack for growing African Violets. She liked her callings in the Church and took special delight in the young women she taught in M.I.A.

She has seen some of the world. She and Dad went with my family to Ohio to pick up Terry at the end of his mission and we went on to Washington D.C. and New York City. On our return trip we visited all of the Church historical sites. After Dad died in November 1971, she went with John and Ruth to Guatemala and often talked about her experiences there. When we were children, Dad and Mother made sure that we went to places like Yellowstone and Grand Canyon. Some of her favorite places, however, were in the mountains east of Fairview and from the time she was a little girl she had opportunities to either live there for short periods or camp there with her family. She also liked to drive on some of the local scenic byways with Terry in the old ’37 60 Coupe.

She was proud of her international family. Among her descendants are some wonderful people from Guatemala, Korea, Tonga, China by way of Australia, Germany, Puerto Rico, and we used to tease our dear sister-in-law, Laurie, about being from a foreign land because of her precious Louisiana accent.

Grandfather Barker was well known for his White Leghorn chickens and Dad’s father was a sheep man so naturally, besides the usual cows and pigs that people had, we also had sheep and chickens and mother continued that tradition for many years even after Dad died. She felt that the grandchildren should have a feeling for the things that their ancestors did to survive and to know the joy to be found from working with our animal friends.

I’m not going to say that we missed out on an occasional spanking but it seems to me that we were mostly raised by love and trust and good example. I’m sure that sincere expectations without undue pressure helped us all to graduate from High School as honor students. Mother and Dad did their parenting quietly but well and their posterity now numbers 23 grandchildren, 48 great- grandchildren, and just recently, one great-great-grandchild plus a bunch of exceptional in-law family members .

She learned to drive and got her driver’s license at age 60 after many years of remembering when she broke a wheel while driving the Model T over the railroad tracks on the north side of town. She continued to drive in a limited way until she was in her eighties.

On her 85th birthday the family presented her with a printed copy of the journal she began writing in 1965. There is still information to be added but she enjoyed having us read parts of it to her in recent years. For some time after moving to Orem her memory of things past was good and she would finish the stories that we had started to read.

For some twenty years after Dad died, Mother lived alone in Fairview. I am truly grateful to Leon and Florine for being close by and giving her so much help. I am also grateful for all her old neighbors and friends, many of whom are here to honor her today.

There came a time about three years ago when it was better for her to live at a place where she could have 24 hour care. For about the first year and a half my children were responsible for her financial and medical management while Carol and I were away and we appreciated knowing that she was in loving hands. I want to also thank the trained and caring workers at Family Living Center and Orchard Park Nursing Home in Orem for their excellent attention to Mother’s needs. They made her days as pleasant as possible and in the last few days of her life helped to make her passing peaceful and dignified. That has proven to be a blessing to them also as she made many friends with her great sense of humor. Some of them are here today.  Her’s was truly a long and fruitful life well lived.

I have had the privilege over the last 20 months of visiting her nearly every day. I have greatly benefited from those visits and I will especially remember Saturday evenings at the Family Living Center when we would watch Lawrence Welk and she would sometimes sing along with the performers. She still had music in her soul and a song she kept humming was “Melody of Love”. She had other favorite songs and hymns and one she liked a lot was “Just a Song at Twilight”. These two songs were included in Dale’s prelude music for which I thank him. My sincere appreciation to all who have contributed in any way to make this day special.

Now in closing let me thank all of you on behalf of the family for being here to pay your respects to Mother. Her life of service was one worthy of emulation.

Gladys and Hugh Anderson

Ella Gladys Barker Anderson, 90, of Fairview, Utah, died July 19, 1995 in Orem.

She was born February 3, 1905 in Fairview to Rufus Orrin and Ella Isadora Bushman Barker. She married Hugh Cheney Anderson September 2, 1925 in the Manti LDS Temple. He died November 26, 1971.She was educated in Fairview and Mt. Pleasant schools and lived most of her life in Fairview. She was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and served in many capacities. She and her husband served for several years in the Manti Temple. She was an excellent seamstress and made many of her own clothes. She loved growing flowers in her house and garden and she liked to paint pictures with pastel chalk. She had a beautiful alto voice and encouraged her children to use their musical talents.

Survivors include three sons and one daughter, Robert H. (Carol) Anderson, Orem; Florine (Leon) Nielsen, Fairview; John C. (Ruth) Anderson, Salt Lake City; Terry G. (Judy) Anderson, Richfield; a son, Orin D. and his wife, Laurie died in 1987. She has 23 grandchildren, 48 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild. Her youngest brother, Eugene Barker, lives in American Fork.

Funeral services will be held Tuesday, July 25, 1995 at 11 a.m., Fairview 2nd LDS Ward Chapel. Friends call at ward chapel from 9-10:45 a.m. prior to services. Burial, Fairview City Cemetery under the direction of Ursenbach Funeral Home.


Ella Gladys wrote her life history.  If you are interested in a copy (it’s almost 100 pages long), please let me know and I can send it to you.  annlewis@byu.net


About annlaemmlenlewis

I am member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and I am currently serving as a Missionary in the Washington Yakima Mission. Welcome to my personal blog, Ann's Words, and my Mission blog, Our Yakima Mission. If you are interested in family history stories and histories, you can find those posted in Ann's Stories. Thanks for looking in!
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