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Nellie McArthur Gubler family papers

As part of our general collection development policy for 20th and 21st century Western American, Utah, and Latter-day Saint history, the L. Tom Perry Special Collections preserves family history collections (including journals, letters, scrapbooks, photographs, business records, family histories, family newsletters,  autobiographies, literary manuscripts, and electronic materials).  The Nellie McArthur Gubler family papers chronicle the remarkable history of one Southern Utah family.  Nellie McArthur Gubler was an extraordinary woman who cared deeply about three things:  her family, her home in Southern Utah, and her membership in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Nellie was born, in 1908, to Moroni McArthur and Emma Jarvis Cottam McArthur, two longtime St. George residents and descendants of early Southern Utah pioneers. She was the second of ten children, but after losing her older brother, Nellie was the big sister. Nellie carefully maintained family records and scrapbooks for her parents and each of her siblings, which are contained in her collection.

Moroni McArthur and Emma Jarvis Cottam McArthur family, 1930

In 1929 she married Emil Gubler, the son of an original Santa Clara, Utah, pioneer.  After their marriage in the St. George LDS Temple, the couple moved to Santa Clara and Nellie claimed to “like it so well” that she never moved back to St. George, a mere 5-7 miles away. Emil eventually became part-owner of the Rocky Mountain Produce Company. Emil and Nellie raised twelve children, nine sons and three daughters, in their Santa Clara home. At the time of her death in 2007, Nellie and Emil were the progenitors of an extraordinary family of 73 grandchildren, 188 great-grandchildren, and 52 great-great-grandchildren.

Emil Gubler and Nellie McArthur Gubler family, 1962

Nellie McArthur Gubler was involved in her community.  She participated in the annual Swiss Days in Santa Clara, the Dixie Roundup, and the St. George Heritage Days for many years. She was also a member of the Santa Clara chapter of the Daughters of Utah Pioneers.  In addition, she served in several Latter-day Saint auxiliary organizations, including the Relief Society, Primary, and the Mutual Improvement Association.

Nellie devoted much time in her life to preserving Southern Utah community and religious history. She compiled several volumes that documented the foundation and history of Santa Clara, St. George, and many of the local, founding families. Nellie was particularly interested in the history of Southern Utah schools, buildings, and LDS church organizations, and in family history. She also studied the history of the Santa Clara Ward and its auxiliaries.

Nellie McArthur Gubler’s family papers contain scrapbooks that document each of these areas and reflect her passion for family, Southern Utah, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. During her lifetime Nellie served and loved those around her, but she also preserved an historical record of her own life, her family, and her beloved Southern Utah.

A finding aid, prepared by Student Manuscript Processor, Audrey Spainhower and Curator, John M. Murphy,  is found here:  http://findingaid.lib.byu.edu/viewItem/MSS%207551.

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