At 1:00 a.m. on August 8, 1924 my father cranked up the old Model T Ford, which he had borrowed for this purpose, and went chugging up the road to the homes of Grouse Creek’s two faithful midwives, Mrs. Hadfield and Mrs. Blanthorn. At 4:00 a.m. of the same morning I, Dorothy Grace Kimber, was ushered into the world in the northeast room of my Grandma Tanner’s home. I was not weighed but I have been told I was just an average size baby, with blue eyes and dark brown hair and a little round face. My parents are Winfred Charles Kimber and Olive Tanner.
I took my first trip by railroad when I was about fifteen days old because Mother was not feeling well and they took us to Ogden for a few days.
At this time we lived with Grandmother Amanda Tanner in the same home I grew up in.
We lived a few months in Yost, Utah where Dad and Uncle Ray fed cattle one winter. We traveled over the mountain by sleigh in January when I was five months old. We traveled all day but it was nice and warm as we had a canvas cover over the sleigh and had a stove inside. Uncle Elmer helped us to the top with his team. When we were nearing Yost, the snow was falling very thick and fast and Dad did not know exactly where we were. He left Mother and I and mounted his saddle horse and rode out until he sighted some cedar trees, which served as a landmark. Mother was very glad when he came back as she was getting nervous. She was very glad to see the lights at the Gulley Ranch where Uncle Ray was waiting for us.
We returned to Grouse Creek in April. Mother and I rode in the wagon with Grandfather Charles Kimber and Dad helped drive cattle. The roads were dry but on the mountain we came to some large drifts that almost tipped us over and we had quite a time getting from one side of them to the other. However, we reached home safely.
The next few months we lived with Grandma Tanner, during which time I learned to walk and talk. In January a little after I was two years old, we moved to the Homestead. I can remember riding back and forth in the buggy, sitting between mother and dad. I wore a little gray coat of Kendall Kimber’s that Emma Kimber had given to me, a navy blue cap mother had made with ear pads on it, and a pair of mittens Grandma Tanner knit for me.
We had a big cedar tree at the corner of the house and Dad made me a swing on one of the limbs. I spent many hours there. I also spent a lot of time walking back and forth over two railroad ties which served as a bridge across the stream of water in front of the house. Mother warned me every day not to do it for I would fall in. I didn’t believe her until the day it happened. I was surely frightened.
I liked living at the homestead but was glad to move down with Grandma Tanner again. We lived in the back part of the house and Grandma had the two front rooms. We were living here when my sister, Delma, was born. I stayed with Grandma Tanner when Mother went for Delma and I can remember how excited and thrilled I was when Dad and I went to Ogden to get Mother and the new baby.
I remember Delma and I slipping in nearly every time Grandma had a meal and eating a little with her. She almost always had some candy in a dish in her cupboard for us. We would sit on her lap and she would tell us stories and sing to us. When she laughed she shook all over and we had quite a time staying on her lap.
When I was six, Grandma Tanner died and Bertha Kimber stayed with us and Uncle Val’s and Ralph’s children. We all had the whooping cough and could not go to the funeral. It was in January and Delma and I were both quite sick with it. When Grandfather Kimber died we couldn’t go to his funeral either. We had chicken pox. This disease also gave me one of my worst disappointments. I was chosen at school that spring to take the leading part in an opera and about a week before the time to present it we contracted the chicken pox and the part went to LaVon Richins.
I had the happiest of childhoods in a happy, fun home, made happy by parents who loved each other, were always so fun and such good examples. We always did things together and both parents had a marvelous sense of humor.
I had fun at the church-sponsored dances and other activities. The family had no car until I was ten years old. It didn’t take material things to make us happy.
I loved to roam around in the hills, pick wild flowers and probably knew every rock and bush.
Mom always played with us while we were working. We sang nursery rhymes and other songs. On Saturdays Mother wrote the jobs to be done on pieces of paper. We would all draw our jobs for the day and this made the work fun. I fed chickens and gathered eggs, but didn’t do much ranch work even though I knew how to milk the cow.
Occasionally the family would go to Ogden, catching the train in Lucin. It was exciting to go to Lucin just to watch the trains. I still have a love of trains.
I always wanted to play the piano and would go next door to Aunt Annie Barlow’s home and spend hours teaching myself how to play. My cousin, LaVerne Barlow, helped me learn how to play a few chords. When I was fourteen years old my parents bought a piano.
That same year we got the first battery operated radio that I can remember having. We never had electricity so everything was battery-ran. Also, we used kerosene lamps for light.
I played in a high school dance band and also played with the Grouse Creek orchestra. I have always loved music and still play piano in a dance band.
Grouse Creek had so many dances for recreation that I learned how to dance when very young. First they had the children’s dance and then the adult’s dance. The children were put to bed on the wooden benches in heavy quilt beds. I can’t remember ever having a baby sitter because we always went where our parents went.
My school years, first through tenth, were spent at Grouse Creek school, which had three rooms and about 100 students.
I started to school when I was six years old. I liked to visit other children after school and sometimes would not get home until late. Mother broke me of this habit by keeping me home from school for a day or two, which was a great punishment for me.
Miss Grace Madsen taught a group of girls to tap dance. She was my fifth grade teacher. LaVon and I were the youngest in the group. We did quite a few dances together on different programs. Mr. Henry, another teacher, had us dance at Yost and Park Valley at the track meet programs and several programs in Grouse Creek. One of my ambitions was to learn to dance well, but I have not had the opportunity to carry on with it.
When I was sixteen years old, I had to leave home and board with a family in Brigham City for the nine-month school year. I attended the eleventh and twelfth grades and graduated from Box Elder High School. I did not attend my graduation ceremonies because I came down with the measles.
Following graduation I went home for the summer and then back to Brigham City to get a job. I worked for a few months at Hamilton’s Drug Store and then got a job at Bushnell General Hospital. It was here I met Al Covieo. He was recovering from a bone graft from his leg to a broken arm he had suffered inCalifornia and he was sent to Bushnell for the operation.
We were married in Las Vegas on July 15, 1944. We made our first home in Ogden, Utah. It was during World War II and apartments were hard to find but we found a place on Lincoln Avenue. It was such a dirty place to live, with the trains and iron works nearby. Linda and Lana were born while we lived there.
We started building a basement house at 1535-22nd Street. We moved into it before it had running water and Al had to carry water home for us. While living here Wynn was born, during the horrible winter of 1949.
Al got tired of building the basement home and we moved into our present home. Kimber was born the first year we lived here. Annette was born five years after Kim and Alene was born eighteen months later.
I have held many positions in the LDS Church. I was Beehive Teacher, Seagull Teacher, MIA Maid Teacher in the Mutual. I was Counselor and organist in the Primary. Also Counselor, Secretary, and Work Director and Visiting Teaching Secretary in the Relief Society. I served on the Service and Activities Committee when it was first started and also I and Al were Dance Directors. At present I am a Relief Society Teacher.
I worked at selling Avon for twelve and a half years. I quit Avon and was released from the Primary Presidency at the same time when I went to work and felt as if I had been dropped out of the world as it was quite a change in my life. I went to work for ZCMI and am still working there.
I love to sew and crochet but do not have time to do much anymore. I like to read, especially books about history.
My family is always together at Christmas and other holidays. The family was sealed in the Salt Lake Temple on February 6, 1961. It was a long wait and I wouldn’t recommend waiting to go to the Temple to anyone – do it right the first time. The day we were sealed was a special day, it was so great to see all six of our children being brought into the sealing room, and it was wonderful when all of their hands were clasped together on the altar.
After a long bout with cancer, Al passed away on July 3, 1977.
My philosophy is that everyone should always have a cheerful countenance and be loving to one another. I try to be a good example. My goal is to keep my family close together for now and for all eternity. I feel that happiness comes from having church activity in our lives. My favorite song is, “As I have Loved You,” and my favorite hymn is, “Love at Home.” My favorite famous persons are my Mom and Dad. I hope to do more temple and genealogy work. My favorite scripture is found in St. John 13:34, “a new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.”