HISTORY OF TOMAS BROUGHTON LAST
Thomas Broughton Last was born November 8, 1902 in Holloway, London, England. He was the second child, and second son born to Walter George David Last and Sarah Ann Hardesty. His middle name Broughton is the maiden name of his maternal grandmother, Eliza Broughton. When Thomas was born he had one older flill brother who had been bern four years and seven months earlier. His name was Charles Henry Last. He also had eight half brothers and sisters.
When Thomas was born his father was forty-four years old. His mother was 27. There were probably nine children living in the home Irart of the time in the year of 1902 His father had eight children born to his first wife, Alice Rachel Baveystock. Alice died the 9th of January 1898 leaving Walter with the eight children to raise. The oldest child was 17 and the youngest one was five years. Walter married Sarah Ann one month and three days after Alice Rachel died. Sarah Ann stepped into the rnarriage with a fledged family when she was twenty three years old By the time Thomas was horn his oldest half brother was twenty one.
On April 5, 1908 Thomas' father, mother, brother Charles, half-sister Daisy, and Kitty Morgan, the fiancee of one of the older brothers were baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Thomas would have been alniost six years old. The spirit of gathering to Zion engulfed the home and it was decided that Walter should go first and earn enough money for the rest of the family to come. He emigrated to the United States in 1910 and the rest of the family came eighteen months later in January of 1912. The beat that brought them to this new land docked in Portland, Maine. They then took a train to Toronto, Canada then on to Chicago and Salt Lake City. From Salt Lake City they caught a train to Irrestor, Idaho. The family was met by their father and a borrowed team and bobsled.
Thomas was 9 when he came to America. He had been baptized a year earlier in England He immediately star'ted school
Letter to Garth sometime in the 1968: ~ assure you I am well, mentally and physically.
Letter. I'll see you in August. Do you remember telling me I'd do well to settle near you. Is there any cheap land available. Are tax delinquent properties available?
Letter to George from Dorothy written while Tom was living in Seattle. ~ think I told you that Tom passed the physical and eye examinations with flying colors. I told you ,George, we bathe too much. He looks well and Bruce wonders why we are worrying about him. He thinks he will live to see us all gone. Remember what I told you bout bathing too much."
PLACES TOM HAS LIVED;
In Seattle before Tom moved to Walla Walla he had an apartment. It was a nice place and a lot of good fliends and members of the church looked afler him. He got a hot meal every day from somewhere. His apartment was a mess, but the family felt he was better off than supposed when they checked on him. At this time it was felt the only improvement would be to move him close to someone in the family as he was lonely and did not remember well.
1978 Letter to Garth from Bruce: ~ called Mom this morning and found she had received a call from Tom's Bishop Sunday. Tommy had a fire. The High Priests Group had cleaned up and found rnany checks and letters unopened. The Bishop said the time had come for Tom to be cared for completely. Mom found a place for him where she used to work and Uncle Jim is now getting Tom to Walla Walla. He's also going to try and find out what Tom has for resources. He told us he still had property. Mom was checking into the State paying the bill and I'm sure they would. But, they are not mentioned in the Lord's plan."
He played the violin. Who can give us some details
From a letter Uncle Tom wrote to Garth (undated)
I am contemplating a tripto Canada in search of my Uncle Bob who came over to America about 1930. He wrote us once and we answered but have not heard a word since. I have written to every source that I can think of, but no soap. I wrote to England to try and pick up his trail. To the Somerset House, Canada House, the Strand and every place anyone hinted that may give a trail. The letter we got I think came from Saskatchewan, Canada but I cannot prove that afler all these years.
He was my mother's brother and was born about 1875 50 would likely be dead under normal conditions, but Dorothy says she heard of a Mr. Hardesty being in a raikoad wreck up in Canada yuears ago. I do not know where to write for such info, but I'll go to the Seattle Library and perhaps the Canadian Mounted can wise me up on that
WHAT DID UNCLE TOM DO FOR A LIVING
CONTACT WITH RELATIVES IN ENGLAND
I remember when George was afraid he would go to England and ruin our reputation with the cousins over there. Did Tom ever go. This was written in a letter to Garth and Shirlee from Tom (undated)
I wrote to my half-sister in Wales and her son sent me knowledge of two of his sisters who are now living in Detroit. So I contacted them. I'm getting quite a mailing list.
I expect to drop in on my two newly acquired neices on the rip to Canada and do a lot of things that need doing The Geneology is not moving very fast, but perhaps the tripto England next fall will stir things up a bit. I am tr}ing to contact all the family over there sothat I will know how to meet them and where. There is a real gang of them.
GARTH'S ASSESMENT OF UNCLE TOM IN 1952. Written in a letter to Shirlee when he was in the Army.
'My miniature uncle who is serving on a mission in the New England States wrote me a very thoughtful letter and it made me feel very good inside. Uncle Tom (I refer to him as miniature for he will not reach over sixty-two inches into the stratosphere) is the second oldest in dad's family. Fortune decreed that he should go through life up to this point in the fraternal organization of bachelorhood. He is ardent in his testimony of the gospel and I have always had a lildng for him. He has a likeable, somewhat childish personality. He loves youngsters and they him; however, it many ways he is a very impractical men, uses little foresite and in mode of dress and social etiquette, he doesn't cut a very impressive figure. Still, it doesn't detract from his own wonderfiil way and I know that he will come home from his mission a changed person, even to the disastrous result that he may give up his freedom for the serfdom of matrimony. I pray there is one woman in this world for my dear uncle."
It is my understanding that Uncle Tom did write to a woman while he was on his mission and did contemplate marriage. When he came home he met the woman and it didn't work out. Does anyone know any flirther details?
TOM'S ASSESSMENT OF GEORGE;
From a letter written to Garth from Uncle Tom in the late 1960's: ~~Your dad and ma are just the same, guess they will never change."
GEORGE'S ASSESSMENT OF TOM
When Tom came to visit' he smelled worse than the out house. I soon got him in the bathtub and a new set of clothes. I guess some things never change.
SENSE OF HUMOR
From letter written to Garth in the 1960's: I did not run into anyone, didn't even graze them, so 1 did fairly well, didn't speed so I got no tickets. Thanks to the consideration of the Lord in having an angel on my shoulder giving me a little promplings
UNCLE TOM STORIES
Boyce: About the time he found Uncle Tom at the Portland Temple
Bruce: About the fire in Seattle that precipitated finding a home for Uncle Tom where he could have more supervision
In later years Uncle Tom's antictes were oflen discussed around the dinner table.
Aunt Dorothy reports, "Tommy is still driving me up the wall at times but I am trying not to let it bother me. He is different and some of the things he come out with embta'rassess me, like the time he was in the store and let out a couple of farts. Most people would have tried to cover it up but not Tommy. He said, "Bang. Bang."
Dorothy: I get his personal laundry. He is really concerned about me and doesn't have much for me to do. Alter a week when I go there and he still doesn't have any, I tell him to go to the shower room and strip off. I get his dtrty underwear before he has a chance to put it on under his clean ones. Yesterday he had his head through the crotch again. I can't think that would be easy. 'What happens on the other end with his legs through the anms and neck? I can only imagine"
When Tom was moved out of his appartment in Seattle, Dorothy wrote George that the clean-up bill was $86.00. His deposit was $50.00 so the difference would have to be paid: Her dry wit comment was "It costs to be as dirty as Tom is."
Sherry writes: I still have some postcards from Uncle Tom that he sent rne from Massachusetts while he was on his mission. He was always a hit with us kids. Probably because he took the time for us. He used to have my young aunts and uncles climb up on the haying equipment (1t had long, wooden teeth which were 10-12 feet off the ground) andjump down into his arms. He taught me to do a somersault and stand on my head. I practiced for hours till I got it right so I could show him my accomplislunents.
Sherry continues: "I also remember cleaning his trailer when he lived beside us while I was in High School. Now that was a job!!
Sherry: While we lived in Kelso, we got a phone call from him. We lived in the country and he was calling from town. He said he was out of gas, so Mike went in to pick him up. Mike asked if he was hungry. Tom said, "Not really". They did go to a restaurant and Mike said he must not have eaten for days. He stayed overnight with us, got up and had a healthy breakfast. We took him back to town. He got into his little V.W. and drove off. I'm not sure what ha~ned to the gas pnoblem. The next time I saw him he was in a nursing home in Walla Walla."
Tales of the Garth B. Last family
Shirlee does not have a sense of smell. Uncle Tom's problem with body odor never did affect her. 'When he did come to visit Greg gave his bedroom to Uncle Toni. After one visit which lasted a week or so, Greg insisted that his room be cleaned from top to bottom to get rid of the odor. No one had said anything about the smell to Shirlee before then. It reminds me of the time Craig wanted his sheets changed after Grandpa George had been to Ron's. The reason be gave 'Grandpa snored in there!"
It was probably during the same visit that his big dog which looked like an Alaskan Husky killed one of our neighbors sheep. Uncle Tom took the dog for a walk every morning and one morning the dog saw the sheep and in spite of Tom's efforts to reign the dog in' it took afier the sheep and Tom stood by rather helpless. Tom was very frustrated and angry at his dog. To teach it a lesson, get even, vent his feelings or whatever, he took the dog up to the canal that runs behind our place and threw the dog in. The dog struggled against the current and finally got itself out. Then into the canal it went again. He would come down to the house and in a little while he would say to our son Brad, Come on, let's go throw the dog in again." Garth thought it was very funny and loved to tell the story over and over. Tom did pay for the sheep.