Pioneer Gratitude – Claron Bradshaw Family, Sponsor
When Claron Bradshaw was asked by the Heritage Park Foundation Committee if he would sponsor the expense of casting the “Pioneer Gratitude” statue in bronze and placing it on the monument in the park, he responded —
“I appreciate my Dixie Pioneer
Heritage! I will do it!”
Claron is the grandson of Ira Elsey Bradshaw and Marian Hinton Bradshaw who built the first permanent home in Hurricane. When Hurricane City was colonized in 1906, they moved down from Virgin City and lived in this home. The Bradshaws let the community use their front room for school, social and religious services until other facilities were built. The home was also used as a hotel for many years.
Claron’s father, Sherwin, was born December 29, 1905 in Virgin City and came with his folks to Hurricane in 1906. His mother, Maree Wood Bradshaw was born in Cedar City, Utah which her progenitors hepled colonize.
The historic Bradshaw home still stands on the southwest corner of the block across the street east from the Heritage.
Pioneer Gratitude – George O. Cornish, Sculptor
George O. Cornish did not charge for the hundreds of hours he used sculpting “Pioneer Gratitude.”
He visualized a Utah’s Dixie pioneer family with physical stamina and undaunted spiritual strength who faced unpredictable calamities, tragedies, hardships, and food scarcity that honed characters of calm, stoic dignity.
The father toiled many cold, grueling, winter months in the deep Timpoweap Canyon that was carved by the turbulent Rio Virgin through the Hurricane Cliffs between the communities of Hurricane and La Verkin, Utah.
He worked with pick, shovel, crowbar, and wheelbarrow building the Hurricane Canal along ledges, through tunnels and across side canyons on flumes. When the canal came out of the west end of the canyon into the Hurricane Valley, it was clinging to the face of the hazardous cliffs several hundred feet above Pah Tempe Hot Mineral Springs that gurgle into the Rio Virgin near the mouth of the canyon.
While the father was working in the canyon during the week, his wife and son took care of the many chores at home. Saturday evening, the father came home to worship with his family on the Sabbath.
The family represented in this statue a feeling of the joyful satisfaction of a bountiful harvest from a new farm they helped pioneer in the fertile Hurricane Valley.
Brother Cornish has written: “They pause in their work and thank God. Heads are bowed and eyes closed as they speak to the Creator. They are grateful too, for the newborn infant on the mother’s arm.
“The father has his feet widespread and firmly planted. His pose and stature represent the physical and inner strength of those who conquered the desert with its searing summer heat and piercing winter cold. The father’s and mother’s fingers are touching softly. They have not forgotten courtesy, or tenderness, or love!
“This lovely woman represents the great spirit of those who worked beside their men; kept their homes; bore, and with love, trained their children.”
I’ve read several articles online about the King America, King World carving (1935) in Moab and have really wanted to find it because it is the kind of thing I am fascinated by.
I looked for this location many times, learning that it was where the King World Water Park used to be, over behind the Arthur Taylor House / Moab Springs Ranch. The Water Park being named after the carving. I finally learned that the rock that was carved was moved over to the hospital in town and was able to go see it.
- Moab, Utah
Melvin the Frog is a sculpture by Gary Lee Price, sculptures by Gary are regularly seen all over Springville and other places. Growing up in Mapleton/Springville I remember seeing Melvin on a post here on 1200 South for many years and he just showed up here in front of Duke’s Jewelers on Springville Main Street. I’ve seen him a few other places too.