Friday, July 17, 2009

Gerber/Davis/Barwick Reunion July11, 2009


On Saturday, July 11, 2009, we had the Gerber/Davis/Barwick Family Reunion at the Canyon Glen Park in Provo Canyon, Provo, Utah.

We had a great time. In the morning there was a light sprinkling rain. It was cloudy the rest of the day and there were a few sprinkles off and on. That was great because it kept it cool. On Friday, the following went on a hike up the Bridal Veil Falls: John Davis, Alan Davis, Hyrum Davis, Kierstin Baak, Brad Baak, Bryce Baak, Brian Baak and Buddie (the dog) Davis.

On Saturday morning everyone started arriving about 10 am. We put on name tags and milled around for a while. We waited for Michael Davis and the Barwick clan to arrive around 1 pm before we ate lunch. Everyone brought something for their family and then something to share with others. We had plenty of food.

After lunch, Del Gerber told us the story of Pepper John (Johannes Gerber). Johannes Gerber was the 2nd Great Grandfather of Carol, Delbert and Donna. He was called Pepper John because he fended off a band of pirates by using bombs filled with pepper. Johannes was a missionary for the Lutheran Church and went to Africa. When he became sick, his church sent him to St. Louis, Missouri, to preside over Lutheran Churches in the area. There he heard the missionaries and was converted to the Church.

We then had a discussion about when we should have the next reunion. It was decided that we would have a reunion every odd year. So the next one will be in 2011.

After Del's presentation we had games. Some people brought games for kids. At about 2:30 pm we had beach ball kick ball. That is kick ball played with a beach ball. Here are a couple of pictures of that:

After the games, John headed up a great group activity. He gave all the adults a three by five card. On each card we were to write three things: What we had done, Where we had been and what our talent was. They were not to write their name on the card.

Then John got up on a table and took the cards one at a time and read them to the group. After reading a card, we had to guess who the person was that turned in a card. My card said that I played the piano, I went to Italy and my talent was family history work. My talent gave me away.

The last thing we did was to take pictures of each family. Here are pictures of each family:

The Davis Family

The Gerber Family

The Barwick Family

Thursday, May 28, 2009

The ship Chimborazo

The ship Chimborazo

The Rees William Davies (Davis) family was converted in Wales and came to America in this ship:

Today I found the passenger list of the ship Chimborazo which lists the family of Rees W. (William) Davies (Davis). I knew that he was on the ship, but I had not seen the passenger list before. I found it on using the following search terms:

This is from the search result list:

This is the passenger list showing the Rees W. Davies/Davis family:

It shows Rees W. Davies, Margaret (wife), Mary (daughter), John (son), Rees (son), Catherine (daughter) and Gwenilian (it says M for male but then says Spinster (which means young woman). Gwenie was adopted and she was born in 1839.

Grandpa Roy in the 1911 Canadian Census

Yesterday I was so excited. I finally found Grandpa Roy in the Canadian 1911 Census. I knew his father, James David Davis, died in 1906 in Idaho. Grandpa always said it was in 1906, the year of the San Francisco Earthquake.

After his father died, his mother, Melissa Jane Avery Davis, married Charles Cole and they moved to Canada. Grandpa's history did not say where he was in Canada.

The following information is from

The census record shows the following:

Charles Cole - head
Melissa - wife
William Cole - son
Ethel Davis - step daughter
Rees Davis - step son
Howard Cole - son
Franklin Davis - step son
James Cole - son

They were living in McLeod, Alberta, Canada. McLeod is North of Calgary, Canada.


Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Memorial Day

Yesterday Carol, Michael, Karalee, Derrick and I went to visit graves of ancestors.

When I was younger, raising you kids, I remember going to genealogy classes where they would talk excitedly about going to graves of ancestors. I said to myself, "What's up with that? What good is it to visit the graves of those who have died?"

Now I find it gives me great satisfaction to visit graves of our ancestors. We have several ancestors that died in our vicinity. Carol's great grandfather, John Theopolis Gerber, is buried in the Taylorsville Cemetery. That is near the Walmart that we go to at least once a week.

Yesterday we visited the graves of ancestors that were in the Springville Cemetery and the Spanish Fork cemetery and put floweres on their graves.

In the Springville Cemetery we visited the graves of Elizabeth Garlick, her daughter, Sarah Garlick and her daughter, Susanna Garlick Wakefield Davis. We also visited the grave of Rees William Davis, his first wife, Margaret Davis, and two of their children, Rees William Jr. Davis and John Davis.

Who were these ancestors?

Elizabeth Garlick - The mother of Susanna and Sarah Garlick. While in Pennsylvania, she had a dream that two young men came up her walkway and a voice said, "These are messengers of God. Listent to them." A week later, two young men came up her walkway. They were the ones she saw in her dream.

Susanna Garlick - One of those two young missionaries was John Fleming Wakefield. After his mission, he went back to Pennsylvania and married Susannah Garlick. They moved to Nauvoo. In Nauvoo, they had 7 children. John died before he could move his family to Utah. So, Susanna took her 7 children across the plains in 1855 to Utah. They wound up in Springville, Utah. Her mother, Elizabeth, and sister Sarah, also went to Springville.

While all this was happening, Rees William Davis, and his wife Margaret, were living in Glamorgan, Wales. He had 7 children. They were converted to the Church. In 1855 they emigrated from Wales to the United States in Springville, Utah, with 4 children on the ship Chimbarazo. In 1858, Margaret died.

Since Rees William Davis was there in Springville, Utah without a wife and Susanna Garlick Wakefield was there without a husband, they figured a marriage union would be a good thing so they got married in April, 1860. Four months later, August 1860, Rees William Davis died. He never knew that a son, James David Davis, (son of Rees and Susanna) would be born to Susanna 24 Apr 1861.

Then in Spanish Fork we visited the grave of Moses Trader Shepherd and his wife, Eliza Jane Adamson.

Moses Trader Shepherd was a polygamist and Eliza was one of his wives. She is the one we come through. Moses and Eliza had a daughter named Eliza Jane Shepherd. She married William Howard Avery. William and Eliza had a daughter named Eliza Jane Avery and she married James David Davis.

Next year we will visit the grave of John Theopolis Gerber and and his son George Gerber in Taylorsville and the graves of many of our ancestors in the Clinton, Utah Cemetery.

Love, DAD

New position at the Family History Mission

On Monday, May 18, 2009, I was transferred from the Indexing Zone of the Family History Mission in the Joseph Smith Building to the US/Canada Zone of the Family History Mission in the Family History Library.

Since Monday, May 18th, I have been in a 3 week training class.


This is where I have always wanted to be working. I will be helping patrons at the Family History Library find their US or Canada ancestors.

I enjoyed my work in the Indexing Zone, even though I went there kicking and screaming. When they gave us a tour of the mission in February, 2005, I remember touring the 6th Floor of the Joseph Smith Building to the Indexing Zone. I thought to myself, "This is not where I want to be assigned". I was happy when I was not assigned to go there, but Carol was assigned to go there. They asked me if it was ok with me if we were separated. I said, "No problem". During the next 2 weeks they asked me several times if I minded that we were separated and each time I said it was all right with me.

Finally, they called me in and said that Carol was having a rough time and had erased some very important information from the computer. They asked me if I had any suggestions as to what they could do. I said what about transferring her to another department in the mission since they had 17 departments in the mission. They said, "what department would you suggest?" I said I did not know enough about the mission departments to make that suggestion. They asked if I had any other suggestions. I said, "No". So they said they would have to release us.

So, Carol and I went back to California thinking that was the end of our mission. In the meantime, the stake president of the Huntington Beach Stake called the Mission President and asked to give us another chance. So we went back to Salt Lake. I met with the Mission Presidency. I said, "Maybe I could be with her in the Indexing Zone." They said, "What a great idea." It turns out that is what they wanted all along.

The indexing zone was responsible for auditing extraction work that was coming in from the extraction centers throughout the Church. This extraction work was providing temples with over 40% of the names for the temples. After the indexing zone audited the extraction work, it went over to a department that made sure the work had not already been done for those names. Then the names were sent over to the temple for baptisms for the dead, initiatories, endowments, sealings to parents and sealings to spouses.

When we started working in the Indexing Zone, there was only 3 months reserve of temple names. The Indexing Zone was processing 300,000 names for the temple each week. But, the temples were using 500,000 names a week. The leaders were sweating bullets. It looked like the temples would have to be closed.

The leader of over the employees and the missionaries gave the missionary leadership a goal to process over 1,000,000 names a week by July, 2005 (we got to the mission in February of 2005). By May, 2005, we met that goal. By July, 2005, we were processing 1,500,000 names a week. By September, 2005, we were processing 2,000,000 names a week. By the end of our mission the church had a reserve of over 200 months of temple names. Everyone was breathing easier.

During our mission, Carol had two serious operations. The first operation was to remove an ulcer that was at the juncture of her stomach and her intestine.

The scar tissue from that first operation, eventually closed the opening between her stomach and her intestine. To fix that they removed 1/4 of her stomach and rerouted her intestine.

A while after our mission, I went back to being a Church Service Missionary (part time missionary) in the Family History Mission in the same Indexing Zone. I went back to that zone because I had some good friends that were still working there.

Two weeks ago, I suddenly started to have the feeling that I had been in that department long enough. So, I asked for a transfer. The Lord, through the mission presidency, sent assigned me to the US/Canada Zone of the Family History Library.

This is where I have wanted to be all along.

Yeah, yeah and yeah!!!

Love, DAD

Sunday, April 5, 2009


On 1 April 2009, I received a surprising cell phone call. A female voice said, "Hello, Robin Davis. Guess who this is." I knew it wasn't any of my children because I know their names. But I did feel that it was a foreigner because of the accent. I asked, "Does your name start with an S". She said, "Yes." I knew it was Silvana Longone.

It turns out that this was no April Fools Joke even though it was on April 1. Silvana lived in Taranto, Italy. When I arrived there, Silvana was being taught by the missionaries that had just been transferred. They had been teaching her for a long time. They answered many of her questions.

On our first visit there, Silvana said that she wanted an explanation of a scripture in John. It was the great intercessory prayer of our Savior to Father in Heaven. It is that very scripture where the Savior explains how he is one with our Heavenly Father. In that scripture He asks that the apostles may be one with Him as He is one with the Father. He further asks that all those that believe on the words of the apostles may be one with them as He is one with the Father.

It wasn't long after that that she was baptized.

Here is a picture of me and Silvana at her baptism:

Robin Davis and Silvana Longone

October 28 1967, Taranto, Italy

Her conversion story is on the Internet (in Italian) at the following address:

This is a recent picture of Silvana and her husband, Robert Echols:

Robert Echols and Silvana Longone

This is a picture of her son, Ermanno, Silvana and Robert:

Ermanno went on a mission to England. I asked him if that wasn't a little strange since he is Italian. He said there were several Italians on his mission to England. He is now married and has a daughter. They are living in Provo, Utah.

This has been an exciting time for me. I now have a greater appreciation for the scripture in the D&C which says if you should work all the days of your life and convert one person to the gospel of Jesus Christ, how great will be your joy with that person in the next life (paraphrasing).

Thank you Silvana.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Carol has a cell phone

Hey fam,

Carol now has a cell phone. If you call during the day, please call on her cell phone. The land line phone is behind a row of couches and she usually cannot get there in time to get your call because she has to go through the kitchen to get around behind the couches. Also, you won't have to wait until after the answering machine message since we screen our calls on the land line.

On her cell phone, theoretically she will answer right away.

Her cell phone # is:


I also try to take my cell phone wherever I go and it would be better if you called me on my cell phone. My cell phone # is:




Monday, January 26, 2009

Draper Temple Open House

The Draper Temple Open House has been going on since Jan 15, 2009. It is a beautiful little temple in the city of Draper, which is the city north of the point of the mountain, in the Salt Lake Valley.

It has a beautiful chandelier in the Celestial Room. It also has the largest sealing room of all the temples in the world.

The endowment rooms have murals which look like paintings of the forests in the Payson Mountains.

The temple will serve 60,000 members of the church. Since it is a small temple, it will not have any temple clothing that you can rent and it will not have a cafeteria. To attend the temple after it is dedicated, members will have to make an appointment.

The open house will end March 14, 2009. It will be dedicated a week or so after that.

In a few months the Oquirrh Mountain temple will have an open house. It is another little temple that is on the west side of the Salt Lake valley below the Copper mine.

The Draper Temple and the Oquirrh Mountain temple were built to take off some of the pressure from the Jordan River temple. Right now the Jordan River temple has about 110 stakes in its temple district. It is always crowded.

It was a great pleasure to go to the Draper Temple Open House. On February 21, 2009, Carol, Michael, Karalee, Derrick and myself are planning to go to the open house.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Car Show January 2009

Yesterday, 1/19/2009, Michael and I went to the car show in Sandy, Utah.

As we walked into the showroom, there were two great looking Corvettes. Michael and I liked the red convertible the best. They let us get in and I took a picture of Michael in the car and then he took a picture of me in the car.

Michael in a Brand New Corvette Convertible

Me in the same Corvette

We saw some other way cool cars like this Ferrari:

Ferrari. WOW!!

The disappointment of the car show was that most of the normal passenger cars (you know, the ones you may be able to afford some day) only got around 30 mpg. There was a Honda Accord hybrid that got 45 mpg.

Of course there was the Toyota Prius hybrid which was listed as 48 mpg city and 45 mpg highway (isn't that strange). I think the Prius is ugly. The Honda looks a lot better.

Maybe next year they will have cars with better gas mileage??

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Phoenix trip to John

Hi family,

We went to John's for the New Years celebration in Phoenix. We had a great time with John, Allison, Alan and Hyrum.

While there, they took us to an archealogical dig of the indian ruins that lived in Phoenix many years ago. We were surprised at all the archealogical sites that were in the Phoenix area. Some of them were at the end of the airport runway. They were surprisingly advanced in their irrigation system which they used to water their crops.

We also enjoyed going to the temple with John and Allison. Since Michael let his temple recommend expire, he stayed home to babysit Alan and Hyrum.

On Sunday, January 4, we celebrated Carol's birthday. Allison took a picture of Carol blowing out candles on her birthday cake and posted it on their blog.

Thank you John and Allison for a great time.