Parley P. Pratt adopted Caroline, his niece, after her father died.  1851 Salt Lake City.
Written by Caroline Amelia Pratt Van Cott about 1848-1850.

Do you know dear sister mine
That I have wondered many a time
You, Mother, in heaven know
How we have suffered here below.

And if she does, how can it be
That she from sorrow can be free.
For even, I, her baby girl,
Whose golden hair, inclined to curl
Has went about from door to door
Asking alike both rich and poor,
If they had something I could do
To earn my bread and clothing too.

At length, when all tired out,
I sat me down to look about.
A lady, from her cottage came,
“My child,” she said, “What is your name?”

“And why are you sitting here alone?”
I have no parents, nor no home.
“Surely, my child,” she said to me.
“If you’re a niece of Parley P.
You must have done something wrong
Or he would give to you a home.”

She did not think, as I well knew
He had wives and children, and not a few
Who depended upon his tender care,
As husbands and fathers means to share.

But I turned away and hung my head
And almost wished that I were dead.
And as the tears rolled down my cheek,
My heart so full, I could not speak.
I thought of her in that far off place
And wished that I beside her laid.

–submitted by Mildred Palmer Larch

[courtesy of Carol J. Larson, transcribed and proofread by David Grow, Mar. 2007]

caroline pratt van cott poem

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