Farmer, Livestock Rancher, Church
Leader, Pioneer and Civic Leader
By Clive Perry Ririe
(From NETWORK, the family newsletter,
volume 3, October 1997)
As one of the officials of The Great
Feeder Canal Company, H.M. Perry was honored to be the final speaker
at the Dedication program. He sensed that folks were tired and uncomfortable
so he limited his remarks to a recitation of a poem that bears absolutely
no connection to water, engineering, construction, financing or anything
else that had thus far been related even though he, as corporate treasurer,
was probably the one attendant most capable of telling the story of the
money required for the project. This is the poem he recited:
A Hindu died, a happy thing
His twenty years united with us through,
He joyfully for entrance cried before the gates of Brahma's
"Hast thou been through purgatory?"
I've been married, he meekly hung his head.
"Welcome and come to my son.
Marriage and purgatory are but one!"
Another Hindu died and to gates
he sped and did not tarry.
The same quiz: "Hast thou been through purgatory
or did thou marry?"
Marry? I married twice!
"Begone, we'll have no fools in paradise!"
This performance, under those conditions,
says that he was not only sensitive and caring but that he was a modest
and witty man who worried little about his peers' perception; that he
saw no need for self-glorification.
His eldest son, Leslie Thomas Perry
recorded: "Soon after I was born Father became disgusted with the
efforts of little Three Mile Creek as it hurried from farm to farm trying
to do the work of a river. He also found it hard to get enough wood to
keep the home fires burring through the winters. He sought a place where
these two essentials of pioneer life in an arid country could easily
be found." The son further records that in 1885, Cache Valley was
already too populous so he continued north to the rich lands of Blackfoot
and Idaho Falls where there was ample irrigation water but not enough
wood. He finally found what he was looking for as he approached the Snake
River near the present site of Ririe, Idaho.
Another son, Albert Z. Perry wrote
extensively of his father's participation in planning and building the
great feeder system. It appears that he was a construction boss after
he helped in the course selection and right-of-way procurement as well
as being Secretary-treasurer and President.
Born at Perry, Box Elder county, Utah
on 3 December, 1856; a settlement probably named for his Grandfather,
he lived to see a ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day saints
named Perry in his honor in Jefferson county, Idaho. He participated
in the naming of the settlement from which the Perry Ward was separated.
He was chosen to be the scribe at a gathering whose purpose was to petition
the U.S. Postal Service to locate a new post office. It was decided that
the name would be Ruby but apparently Perry's printing of the word came
out Rudy so the new office was approved for Rudy, Idaho and all the participants
seem to have agreed that having a post office was the important thing
and they could live with Rudy as the name even though that wasn't their
Note: This is a piece that I sent to
Elder Lee for inclusion in a history of the Great Feeder System he is
doing. Even though the Hindu poem was in the last publication, I thought
its inclusion in this brief biography of Grandfather Perry was justified.
Return to Clive
Return to Family History Main