Monday, November 2, 2009


Melba Victoria Dunyon was born in Tooele, Utah where her father was teaching school, but her family soon moved to Salt Lake City where she grew up. We actually know less about Melba than any of the other girls. She was a talented musician and was known for her skill with the cello at a young age. Melba could also play an ukulele which was a very handy thing to know in the 1920s. The photo album includes several pictures of Melba accompanying songs around the campfire at Wylie Camp in Zion. This photo of Melba is one of my favorites. The photo is a snapshot from a photo album kept by Dora. Melba must have enjoyed pranks almost as much as Anne because Anne in her descriptions of the trip constantly mentions Melba as being a co-conspirator. Melba, along with most of the other girls, was a student at the University of Utah, but the following fall, she moved with her family to Berkeley, California, where she continued her education at UC Berkeley. Mildred followed Melba to UC Berkeley that year, and they must have talked quite a bit about their trip to Zion because a recounting of one of their more harrowing experiences in Zion could be found in the Oakland Tribune April 1921. A few years later, Melba married Earl Lyle Reed, and they had two children. Later she divorced and had to support her children and mother, who had moved in after the death of Melba's father. She worked hard throughout her life in various occupations including working on Treasure Island during the 1939 World's Fair and a manufacturers' representative for several toy companies. She didn't retire until she was 74 years old.

No comments: