Just For Fun~My creative blog for scrapbooking and digital freebies!
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Sunday, May 18, 2008

H is for Hippo, I is for Igloo, J is for...

JERUSHA...my middle name is Jerusha. I am named after my great grandma on my dad's side of the family.




Jerusha Layne was born on Christmas day of 1886 in Lewiston Utah. Her father was a polygamist with two wives so Jerusha was her Mother’s ninth child but her father’s sixteenth.
When Jerusha was only 8 months old her family had to flee Utah to avoid the Edmund's Law that made the practice of Polygamy illegal. She attended school in a one room building that served as school, church and activities center.

At the age of twelve Jerusha’s mother died, leaving Jerusha to do all the household chores for her father and brothers. Less than six weeks later her dad also passed away. Jerusha was diagnosed with Diabetes and at the time there was no known cure. She passed away on August 11, 1911 at the young age of 24. Those who knew her described Jerusha as jovial, attractive and happy.


There are times in my life (like Junior High school) when I hated my middle name. Kids teased me because it was different. Then came high school where it was cool to be different and suddenly my middle name wasn't so bad. When I began cheerleading it seemed that every squad I was on had multiple Amys. My Dad had always called me Amy J. and so it stuck. My cheer buddies at BYU never called me anything else, to this day every Christmas card is still addressed to Amy J and I love it.


As a side note, my parents were actually going to give me Jerusha as a first name but then decided against it. Ummmm, lets see..."Let's name our new daughter Jerusha. No one has ever heard of it, only 1 in a billion girls will have that name and it is about as unusual as you can get!" "No, let's name her Amy, everyone has heard of it, only 1 billion girls will have that name and it is about as usual as you can get!"


As an adult I have received interesting reactions to the name Jerusha. Comments like, "Oh that's interesting" and "I have never heard that name before" are the most popular. There are a few who think it is pretty. I love it, but John is not as convinced as I am that it is a cool name. He was opposed to giving it to Sydney as a middle name so I gave in and to this day that is a decision that I have regretted. It was my idea to give her the middle name Erin (John's middle name is Aaron) and so I will never have a little girl that I can give my beautiful middle name. I can only hope for a granddaughter...

14 comments:

Jan said...

So glad you posted this. I was wondering what the J was and then when I heard that name, then I wondered where it came from. She is so beautiful. What an interesting story too. It really brings it to life as to the times of the early church. Wow. I like the name. It is very unique and special I think. Thanks for this information Miss Amy Jerusha.

*Side Note to you-that picture of Snoop and the BofM was a huge April Fools joke. It had a story saying that Gladys Knight introduced him and he was hooked. It went rippling around the globe as it being true because the sight had CNN.com on it, making it appear real. I still love the photo. It could happen. Well maybe by proxy :)

Movie Queen said...

Amy, this was such a great idea for a post. I think your middle name is so cool. Someone also told me it was Brigham Young's first wife's name or something to that affect. It's also in the Bible one time.

I was wondering the same thing about that picture! I was pretty sure I had heard it was a joke, but couldn't remember. Thanks for clarifying.

Brenda said...

I love unique names...especially ones that have a great story behind them, like yours. What an honor to be named after such a beautiful person from your history.

I have have gotten a lot of ohhh and wow, that's different comments on my daughter's name lately (Cheznee). Oh and a lot of "like Kenny Chesney?" which is not at all why we named her. My husband is just WAY TO PICKY and I like unique. I guess all that matters is that her name fits her and we think it is pretty... Ohh, and I love how my boys call her Chez and Chezie.

Amy J. said...

Alicia it is in 2nd Kings, it is the name of a mother of a King. It was also Hyrum Smiths first wifes name. Brenda I love her name, very cool. And Jan, I am often amazed by the people who have been baptized that I knew in school...never say never.

debsters said...

Jerusha is unique and I love that it has some family meaning. My boys all have family names as their middle names and I think it's neat to tell them the stories of their ancestors.

meohmyers said...

What a great post! Love your name and the story behind it! I, too, have used family names for each of my kids names and I love the history behind each name. Or I should say starting a history for each name. You get the idea.

Noelle said...

hi amy. so glad you started one of these. i will now begin to stalk you too. watch out. i was one of those who thought you had a weird middle name - sorry. love the history but when did she get married and have kids enough at dying at 24 to spawn your dad's family?

Jodi said...

Thanks for the story Amy - that was really fun to read. I also have a middle name that I kept secret until HS. I was named after my great-aunt Louise. I'll have to look into her background a little more and do a post. Thanks for the idea...I have a tough time coming up with posts. Everyone feel free to give me ideas (Jan, who seems to post 2-3 times a day). ;)

terramisu said...

What a beautiful story! I was wondering what the J stood for!

Em & M's said...

Amy--I just found out you have a blog! I'm excited, especially because I know you always have great book recommendations. This story about your middle name is so interesting! It's fun to discover your heritage.

l.a.c. said...

amy, you are super woman! i loved seeing you on your mower with sweet baby on the front -- both smiling and enjoying the evening weather. it is great to get "caught up" with you. names with meanings are the best...and your middle name is lovely. my girls both have middle names with meaning...hoping that the strength, wisdom, and beauty will live on in them too :)

Rachel said...

You know that I love the name Jerusha. It is fun to see people's facial expressions when I tell them Emma's middle name (which is Jerusha...unlike John, Chad actually agreed to it.) You can totally tell what their real feeling about the name is by their face.

Shayla said...

I used to feel the same way about my middle name in school. I don't know why, it's not like it's so uncommon...maybe it just felt old-fashioned. Now I'm so proud of it and the history it holds for me and my family. I gave my girls middle names after Grandma's, but sometimes I wish I had passed down mine (Jane) to them, too. Great post.

SuzanSayz said...

I remember when you were born and I heard your middle name and the story behind it. I have loved the name Jerusha ever since then. I thought about using it for one of my girls but I was worried that it seemed like copying. Stupid me I should have done it anyway.
From your cousin Susan