Pratt Family Reunion

We acknowledge the receipt of an invitation to attend a “Picnic Gathering of the Pratt Family,” to be held at the residence of Mrs. Marian R. Pratt, in the Nineteenth Ward, on Monday, the 19th inst., the birthday anniversary of the late Apostle Orson Pratt. The committee of arrangements are: Laron Pratt, Parley P. Pratt, Mathoni W. Pratt, Moroni L. Pratt, Milando Pratt, Alma Pratt, Belinda P. Musser, Wm. Bailey.

These family reunions are delightful affairs, and aid in the cultivation of highest instincts of human nature. They preserve, fresh and green in the memory, the good examples and precepts of ancestors, and strengthen the bonds of affection between their descendants. No doubt all who participate in the reunion of the numerous and honored Pratt family will heartily enjoy and profit by the occasion.

[Journal History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Sept. 7, 1887, 3]
[Deseret News, Sept. 7, 1887]

[transcribed and proofread by David Grow, Apr. 2006]


Pratt Family Reunion

Several of the members of the Pratt family have arranged for a picnic gathering to be held at the residence of Mrs. Marian R. Pratt, in the Nineteenth Ward, on the anniversary of the late Apostle Orson Pratt, Monday, September 19, commencing at 10 a.m. Cards of invitation have been issue, to which there will doubtless be a general response. The committee of arrangements are: Laron Pratt, Parley P. Pratt, Mathoni W. Pratt, Moroni L. Pratt, Milando Pratt, Alma Pratt, Belinda P. Musser, and William Bailey. The gathering will doubtless be a most happy affair, and will serve to bring together one of the largest families in the country, some of the members of which have probably not met for years.

[Journal History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Sept. 8, 1887, 3]

[transcribed and proofread by David Grow, Apr. 2006]


The Pratt family reunion will be held on Monday next, at the residence of Mrs. Marian R. Pratt, in the Nineteenth Ward, as previously announced in the News. It will commemorate the 76th anniversary of the birth of the late Orson Pratt, whose memory will never fade among the Latter-day Saints.

[Journal History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Sept. 17, 1887, 2]

[transcribed and proofread by David Grow, Apr. 2006]


The Pratt Family Reunion
A Highly Enjoyable and Interesting Occasion

According to previous announcement there was a large gathering of the families of the late Parley P. and Orson Pratt, to commemorate the 76th anniversary of the latter’s birthday, at the residence of Sister Marian R. Pratt in the Nineteenth Ward. Among the invited guests were President D.H. Wells, President A.M. Cannon, and Sisters E.R. Snow Smith, Presinda Kimball, Zina D. Young, Susan Snively Young, and many others. The grounds were tastefully arranged and decorated with national flags, etc. On the spacious lawn an awning was spread and seats provided for the entire company. Adjoining the lawn a table 100 feet long was spread, and at 3 p.m. about 150 of the family and guests partook of a sumptuous repast which had been provided. After dinner the company repaired to the lawn and was called in order by Elder Milando Pratt.

The following address written by Elder Laron Pratt, was then read by Elder Milando Pratt:

Brethren, Sisters and Friends:

I have been called upon the make the opening address on this interesting occasion. I am very much pleased to see before me so large a gathering of relatives and friends, and in the name of the family I bid you a hearty welcome, and hope peace, joy, thankfulness, and kindly feeling will characterize this gathering.

It is very good, very pleasant and profitable to have such family reunions, wherein we can interchange thoughts, greetings and remembrances, and renew old associations, and I hope to see many such gatherings, that a feeling of love and affection may disseminate among us, and bring us into still closer relations of kinship.

We meet today to celebrate an occasion which should be to us a pleasant memory, and to converse of one whom we all loved and esteemed, who filled the measure of his creation and has gone hence to render an account of his doings here in the flesh, and to continue the good work in a higher sphere.

Our father, relative and friend, Orson Pratt, whose seventy-sixth birthday anniversary we are celebrating, lived to the allotted age of man, being a few days over 70 years of age when he died. He was a man of humble mien, possessed of great intelligence and many sterling qualities of heart, the most conspicuous among which was his staunch integrity and valiant, unflinching defense of the principles of the Gospel which he advocated. Fifty years of his life were given to the promulgations of the principles of truth. Earthly honors and ambitions were as nothing to him. The glittering bauble of worldly wealth had no attraction compared to the beauty and glory of human salvation. These things never made him swerve from the path he had chosen. He was a friend to all humanity in the fullest sense, when the spiritual condition of mankind was concerned. His constant thought was how to elevate his fellow beings, and fit them for a more exalted plan of usefulness. His heart was set upon doing the greatest amount of good to the greatest number, and performing a grand and glorious work for the salvation of the sons and daughters of God. From the time he was a youth of nineteen until he was taken from our midst, he labored incessantly and humbly for the welfare of mankind. His mind was wholly devoted to accomplishing the purposes of God, as he understood them, and he went forth without purse or scrip and traveled very extensively on sea and land, spreading the Gospel of life to many nations of the earth, prophesying of the things that were coming to pass and of the destruction that would overtake the wicked and corrupt.

Few men have labored so incessantly and earnestly for the accomplishment of such a grand and glorious purpose as the saving of poor fallen humanity. And as his prophetic voice was raised long and loud in proclaiming the glorious principles of salvation to the nations of the earth while he was here in the flesh, so also will his works and teachings, left on record, speak as with the voice of thunder to those whom he has left behind. Such a work as he has performed will leave an indelible impression upon those who have heard him in life. It needs no special exertion on our part to keep him in remembrance, for although he has filled his earthly mission and laid down an earthly form, his work among the people of God will never die, and may it always be kept green among his family by pleasant gathering like the present.

Again, his great mind was constantly exercised not only in relation to the salvation of the living but also the salvation of the dead; those who had died without a knowledge of the Gospel. So earnestly did he wish to secure to them all eternal life in the presence of their heavenly Father, that he spent considerable time in helping to compile a book of records of the Pratt family and its branches containing over 3,000 names. From this record we can now trace our lineage, with its numerous branches some 300 years. During the latter part of his lifetime he selected most of these names and then called upon his family and relations in his Territory to perform certain ordinances in the house of the Lord for these deceased ancestors and friends; thus opening to them their prison doors in the spirit world.

But he was far from doing all he intended. He has left this unfinished work for his sons and his daughters, his relations and connections to continue until it is accomplished. Should we not be proud to labor in this noble work which is already planned out for us? We should wake up to the necessity of bestirring ourselves in the matter, and unite as one in such a glorious purpose. We must remember that life is short and we were not born to waste away our time in idle pleasures. Our heavenly Father gave us mortal existence for a little season to see what use we will make of it, and if we do good we will be worthy of a better life; but if we throw away our opportunities, then our chance of eternal life will be commensurate therewith.

My brothers and sisters, let us be faithful, earnest and valiant in the good work; let us be united with love and affection for one another; treat one another with consideration and kindness, being charitable in all things, and follow the illustrious example set before us by our father and friend, that our minds may be filled with the light and intelligence of the spirit of God, and when our earthly career is ended we can look back over our lives with satisfaction and glorify God therefore.

May the Spirit of God rest upon you that your joys and pleasures may be unbounded this day, in the name of Jesus. Amen.

After the reading of the address, a previously arranged programme of exercises was carried out. Remarks were made by President D.H. wells, President A.M. Cannon, Alma Pratt, Sisters Eliza R. Snow Smith, Zina D. young and Presinda Kimball and others, all of whom spoke in terms of praise of Apostles Parley P. and Orson Pratt, their associations with them, and of their faithful labors and devotedness to the work of God, and exhorted all present to emulate their example and be faithful to their profession, so they might have the privilege of being reunited with them.

Songs and recitations were given by young members of the families. At sundown the benediction was pronounced by Elder Joseph Bull, after which the lawn was beautifully illuminated and the younger members of the various families enjoyed themselves in the dance. Everything passed off harmoniously, and all enjoyed themselves. The gathering of yesterday will long be remembered by all who participated.

There were present representatives of the families of Parley P., Orson, Anson and Wm. D. Pratt. A “Tribute to Orson Pratt,” written by Elder George G. Bywater, was read. It was a response to an invitation to be present, which the writer was prevented from accepting. The musical portions of the programme were nearly all rendered by members of the Pratt family, showing that a marked vein of musical talent runs through it.

[Journal History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Sept. 19, 1887, 4]
[Deseret News, Sept. 20, 1887]

[transcribed and proofread by David Grow, Apr. 2006]

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