A Brief History of Anna Christine Anderson Thorup III

Herman and Anna had five children – Anne, Herman, Joseph, Eliza, and William. The little girl died in an epidemic that also took two of the remaining children of the first wife.

There were sad times from this. Also, the persecution because of the practice of polygamy was a trial hard to bear. Many children died directly or indirectly because of it, and the family had to be separated because of the prison terms that Herman was sentenced to. We shall not dwell on the problems that accompanied these prison sentences, though they were many. But Benjamin Harrison, then President of the United States of America, wrote out a commutation for the six-month sentence Herman was serving, due to his splendid record and his suffering family. Many pages could be written of the cruelty of the U.S. Marshals and the suffering heaped upon the Saints who were trying to live the Gospel of Jesus Christ.


The sterling qualities that Anna Christine possessed are worth noting here. When she made a promise, it was fulfilled. If someone confided in her, it was respected and never told to anyone. She never gossiped if she could not speak good of anyone she never said evil. She recognized that all problems have two sides. She never judged and punished her children if they did. If the children were naughty, she punished them and taught them the fallacy of their ways. If she promised a chastisement for disobedience she kept her word regardless of what it cost. For this reason, her children knew that she meant what she said and it was a strong factor in shaping their lives. She was constant in the guiding of her children’s lives. She was exemplary and her steadfastness and devotion to her family and to her Church was inspiration to many. She never complained. She worked for many years in the Relief Society Presidency. For years she washed the sacrament linen and furnished sweet home made bread for the sacrament washed the dishes and glasses so all was in readiness for the following Sunday.

While in the Relief Society Presidency, the need for nurses was great, so Anna Christina took a nursing course under Dr. B. H. Roberts wife, who was a skilled Doctor. She received her certificate of graduation, and her work among the people of the First Ward began. Just back of her home were people who had her help. Also, on the North West corner of the block at 6th South and 6th East was "Rock Row". (This is right across the street from what we now know as Trolley Square). Rock row was a long continuous row of apartments, and here, it appears, a good many emigrants lived till they could better themselves and there was much poverty there. To the east on the same block were a number of houses. The 6th South entrance made a "U" road. Here also was poverty. Anna Christine made her rounds among these homes regularly. Besides these needy cases, there were confinement cases and patients with serious illness that needed her attention. At this time, she had young children of her own that needed attention, and so when she was needed by the sick her youngest son, William went with her. She would not leave him alone. So William had the job of holding the baby upon it’s arrival while his mother took care of the mother. In the winter, William sat In front of the oven to keep the new baby warm and was a very good assistant to his mother. He always managed to give the baby It’s first kiss because the rest were busy with the new mothers which was a real pride to William.

At Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years there were special baskets prepared by Anna Christine and her children for blind brother Larson and other lonely folks. Pies, cakes, vegetables, chicken and other delicacies she generously gathered together for these folks. Then she commissioned the children to deliver them for her. Eliza and William remember well how they would vie for the honor of handing it to the recipient, and the expressions of gratitude on the faces was an indelible impression for these youngsters.

Anna Christine was immaculately clean with what she had but she had no modern conveniences to assist her. There was no telephone, no electricity, no bathroom facilities. Instead, she had a wooden sink to wash her dishes In, coal oil lamp for light, and coal stove for heat. Her son William was rather sickly as a small child, and one time when he had a bad spell of sickness he said to his mother, "I’m going to die". At this