The Minidoka Company of Daughters of Utah Pioneers, Rupert, Idaho is happy to be together again after months of no formal meetings due to the Covid 19 Pandemic. As local businesses and communities began to open up, the Company board decided it was time to move forward and reconnect with their camps and members.
“We needed to come together again and celebrate that we all made it through this closure,” Said Company President June Potter. “We needed to have a Jubilee that is worth remembering.”
The Daughters of the Utah Pioneers (DUP) camps and companies traditionally take a recess during the summer months finishing at the end of May and beginning again in early September each year. But this time the closure was extended many months due to Covid restrictions and concern for health of members. Members have not met regularly since early fall 2020.
The Minidoka Company board chose as the 2021 Jubilee theme, “A Bright Future Built Upon the Past”. It was held on August 23. Dr. Rick Parker, curator of the Minidoka County Museum was the featured speaker. He explained the growth of the museum and paid homage to many local citizens who helped procure items for the museum. A musical number, pioneer reading and luncheon were also part of the celebration attended by 32 members and guests.
According to the International Society Daughters of Utah Pioneers (ISDUP) web page, the group was organized in 1901 “solely for historical, educational, and public purposes and is completely non-political and non-sectarian.” Honoring the men, women and children who founded Utah is just the beginning for DUP. Many of these pioneers continued on to settle in Idaho, California, and other parts of north America. The national society encompasses “a broad scope of services” which includes, among other services, preserving historic landmarks and educating school children and adults regarding their pioneer forbears. One way DUP passes on this learning is through the organization of Camps and Companies throughout the United States and Canada.
“Camps are small local groups of members who come together to learn about pioneers through lessons, histories and music,” noted Minidoka Company Secretary, Terri Johnson. “We meet monthly and each camp varies in membership numbers, ages, backgrounds and interests.”
“A Company within DUP provides structure and leadership for one or more camps within a geographical area such as Minidoka County or Cassia County,” explained Potter. “The company presidency and board provide support and strength to camps in its jurisdiction and is a liaison between ISDUP and each camp.”
Both Potter and Johnson agree that learning and practicing leadership skills is a bonus to learning about pioneers for members of the camps and company.
“Our future IS brighter than some of us thought it would be after such a long closure,” says Johnson. “We have some camps with multiple new members as we begin this 2021-22 year and we welcome four new members to our Company Board – members who have not served with us before. What a great new beginning – renewal – after a long separation from each other!”
“And our arms are open to welcome more members to share with us,” Added Potter.
If you have pioneer ancestry including railroad workers and more, and you are interested in information how you might get involved with DUP, check out the website isdup.org. Information regarding contacting local Camps and Companies is also available on the website.