History of Lydia Musetta Workman (Shirts)

Born 9 Dec 1874,  Died 9 Sept 1958

By Susan R. Bentz

The Christmas season was approaching the village of St. George, Utah when a little baby girl, Lydia Musetta Workman, was introduced into this world December 9, 1874, the third daughter and fifth child of Hyrum Smith Workman and Emily Herbert. The family home was Wallsburg, Utah but due to a work mission call from the President of the latter-Day Saints, President George A. Smith, Hyrum was called there to work as a mason on the St. George, Temple, the family was enjoying the sunny climate of Southern Utah and doing the work of the Lord. The following Spring, an apostle of the Lord visited St. George, he took the infant "Muse" (as she was lovingly called by her family) in his arms and carried her to an upper room of the unfinished Temple and said "Let it be known, that this is the first baby to enter this house of the Lord." The Workman family returned to Wallsburg where Muse grew to young girlhood. When she was twelve years old the family moved to Milfork, near Price, Utah. She often told how mountain lions played with their young on the cliffs and in the valley. At the age of fourteen Muse went to live and work at the St. John hotel at Green River, Utah. Serving meals to a hundred and fifty men twice a day at the dining hall. (She had five brothers, john Thomas, Herbert, Frank Smith, Robert James and Eugene and had four sisters, Emily Louisa, Ester Saphronia, Mary Elizabeth and Lois Martha). However it was there that she met her future companion, James Ellis Shirts. Shortly before Christmas, Muse's mother, Emily and the small children come to visit them. Emily's health was very poor and while there she became very ill and passed away in the arms of her beloved daughter Muse on Dec. 23, 1895. She was laid to rest in the little cemetery at Lone Tree, Wyoming. Father Hyrum and the younger children remained with Jim & Muse the remainder of the Winter. After Jim died, Muse felt she could not live in the home anymore so sold it to Mr. Jess Cameron. Soon she bought a small house across the street from the old home and also across the street from her daughter, Velva Jones. She had the house remodeled and moved in, living there alone until she was too ill to take care of herself. Her eye sight was poor so she could not read very much or do embroidery work to pass the time so she spent hours in her little rocking chair, looking out the window down the main street of Hailey. She was miserable living alone because of the fear she had all her life but industrious woman, well organized and able to accomplish more than most people. She was neat and clean in her person, beautiful young woman and lovely gracious older woman. It was while she was at Wendell, Idaho to visited her daughter, Vera Thomason, she had a severe heart attack and was taken to the St. Benedict hospital at Jerome, Idaho where she passed away the next day, Sept 9, 1958 at the age of 83. All the children came & visited with her the evening of the eighth. She was brought back to Hailey and funeral services were held at the Hailey Ward Chapel L.D.S. She was laid to rest beside her beloved husband, James Ellis Shirts, at the Hailey Cemetery. She was a life-time member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and obeyed the commandment to multiply and replenish the earth. The living posterity of Jim & Muse are six married children, twenty-five grandchildren, forty-four great-grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.


Back to Workman Family History web pages.