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Bernice Gertrude Phillips Gibbs

Female 1900 - 1981  (80 years)

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  • Name Bernice Gertrude Phillips Gibbs  [1
    Born 5 Aug 1900  Denver, Colorado, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Gender Female 
    Reference Number 12342 
    Buried May 1981  Bear River City, Box Elder, Utah, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • Bear River Cemetery
    Died 19 May 1981  Brigham City, Box Elder, Utah, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I12342  kukkusfamilies
    Last Modified 14 Oct 2018 

    Family Laron Gustave Anderson,   b. 26 Dec 1898, Wellsville, Cache, Utah, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 23 Nov 1973, Brigham City, Box Elder, Utah, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 74 years) 
    Married 18 Sep 1918  Wellsville, Cache, Utah, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    +1. Ruth Margaret Anderson,   b. 13 Jun 1921, Corinne, Box Elder, Utah, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 21 Jun 1988, Ogden, Weber, Utah, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 67 years)  [natural]
    Last Modified 14 Oct 2018 
    Family ID F3751  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 5 Aug 1900 - Denver, Colorado, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 18 Sep 1918 - Wellsville, Cache, Utah, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBuried - May 1981 - Bear River City, Box Elder, Utah, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 19 May 1981 - Brigham City, Box Elder, Utah, USA Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 

  • Photos
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  • Notes 
    • Golden Spike Site Nearly Was Forgotten
      Will Bagley
      Published: 05/05/2002 Edition: Final Section: Utah Page: B1
      A single determined individual can make a remarkable difference. When it comes to commemorating Utah's past, few people made more of a contribution than Bernice Anderson, whose tenacity and persistence helped create the Golden Spike National Historic Site.

      Friday, thousands of railroad buffs will gather for the 30th time to celebrate the joining of the rails at Promontory Summit on May 10, 1869, when the Union Pacific and Central Pacific met to create the transcontinental railroad.

      Bernice Gibbs was born Aug. 5, 1900, and spent most of her life in Corinne, "the Berg on the Bear." Married at 18, she raised six children and reported on Box Elder County for The Salt Lake Tribune. A devoted historian, Anderson considered the desolation at Promontory Summit a national scandal. The historic spot was so poorly marked with a "lonely cement pyramid" that one visitor complained he could build a better monument in his back yard.

      "It is the most neglected historical spot in our land," Bernice said. She wrote hundreds of letters to Congress, the president and Park Service officials to convince them to make Promontory a national historic monument. The question of why the Park Service was not doing more to preserve and promote the site had no answer, Bernice wrote. "At least not acceptable to me."

      Many of the visitors to the forgotten spot would ask why Promontory had not been made a national monument. Others, Bernice said, asked "What! No beer?" Anderson was president of the Golden Spike Association when it began holding annual re-enactment ceremonies at Promontory on May 10, 1952.

      "This is sacred soil, dedicated to the sacrifices of the thousands who labored in the great race to build the first transcontinental railway," she said in 1957. "Will it take its rightful place in the heritage and traditions of America, preserved and protected by a grateful government, or will it remain desolate and forgotten to sink into oblivion?"

      Former National Park Service Historian Robert Utley recalls visiting Promontory in a battered government truck to evaluate the spot with Anderson in January 1960. Utley was astonished at the emptiness of the snow-covered hills and prairie surrounding the summit, which is actually flat.

      "There was nothing there," he recalled. The track had been scrapped during World War II, leaving little evidence of the railroad. But nearby, the bed of the old road ran across the desert through cuts and fills, including the Big Fill where in two months 500 Mormon workers dumped 10,000 cubic yards of dirt to cross 500 feet of a 70-foot-deep valley.

      On the way back to Brigham City, the truck slid off the icy road. Utley told Bernice, "I'm afraid you'll have to sit in the back if we're going to get out of here." It worked, and Anderson convinced Utley that Promontory was indeed a historic spot. Promontory "made the first serious and permanent breech in the frontier and established the process by which the entire frontier was to be demolished," Utley wrote. "Promontory Summit best illustrates the historical meaning, as well as the dramatic construction story, of the first transcontinental railroad."

      Promontory became a national historic site under private ownership in 1957.

      On July 30, 1965, Anderson finally won her battle when Congress agreed to make Promontory Summit a federal site with full funding. Anderson died in 1981, but thousands of dedicated railroaders will meet Friday to celebrate the 133rd anniversary of the driving the Golden Spike. Each one owes thanks to a dedicated and persistent woman, Bernice Gibbs Anderson.



      Bernlce Gibbs Anderson Obituary

      CORINNE-Bernice Gibbs Anderson, 80, died May 19, 1981, in a Brigham City nursing home.

      Born August 5, 1900, Denver, Colorado, to James Monroe and Frankie Phillips Gibbs. She married Laron G, Anderson September 18, 1918 in the Salt Lake LDS Temple.

      She lived with her grandmother from six weeks of age. Attended Corinne schools, and Boxelder High School. She was a former reporter for the Salt Lake Tribune, a newspaper correspondent and columnist for 12 years.

      Was a historical and poetry writer, had written numerous stories on the Golden Spike, railroading, the founding of Corrine, Utah, and other historical happenings In Northern Utah. She was appointed honorary chairman of the Utah Golden Spike Centennial Commission, by Governor Calvin S. Rampton. She founded the National Golden Spike Society in 1957, which has annually presented the May 10 Commemoration of the Driving of the Golden Spike.

      Survived by two daughters, four sons, Mrs. Ruth M. Michelli, Corinne; Mrs. Gaye B. Nelson, Vernal; Wayne L., Clinton M., and Darrell L., all Phoonix, Arizona; Max C. Pleasant View; 24 grandchildren; 20 great-grandchildren.

      Funeral services will be conducted Saturday, May 23, 11 a.m. at the Corinne LDS Ward Chapel. Friends may call at the Olsen Funeral Home, Brigham City, Friday, 7 to 9 p.m. and at the Corinne Ward Relief Society Room, Saturday, one hour Prior to services.

      Interment, Bear River Cemetery.

      Bear River Cemetery
      Bear River City
      Box Elder County
      Utah, USA

  • Sources 
    1. [S327] Utah, Select County Marriages, 1887-1937, Ancestry.com, (Name: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc.; Location: Provo, UT, USA; Date: 2014;).
      Record for Bernice Gertrude Phillips Gibbs