Descripción de editorial
In presenting this work to the public, I not only fulfill the desires of my own heart and those of my kindred who have undertaken to publish what is here written and compiled, but likewise, I am persuaded, the wish of our departed ancestor. Laying the foundation for such a work while living (as the copious selections from his own writings will testify), he left its bringing forth as a sacred legacy to his posterity.
For many years this duty, unenjoined in words, but accepted by all in the light of a behest, was permitted to lie dormant. The death of President Kimball, on the 22nd of June, 1868, was a calamity so sudden and heavy in its effect upon his family, as to almost paralyze thought and effort. Though trained to independence and self-reliance, under his wise government, and never pampered in ease and luxury, they had ever looked to him for guidance and support, and had never known the weight of responsibility resting upon him as their parent and provider, only as from time to time he had taken certain ones into his confidence and permitted them to share his burdens.
In his absence they were as sheep that had lost their shepherd. "Who will provide for us now, and what shall we do to earn a livelihood?" Such were the thoughts presented to their minds, and the questions asked of their secret souls, as they looked around upon their temporal situation. The division of the parental estate had left them comfortable, though far from rich, None of his sons had trades, but all had been brought up to work. Realizing that a city life was no longer their lot, they resolved to separate, and, following the example of their ancestors for generations, go forth and colonize new regions. Some moved north, and others south, but few remaining in the city of their birth, and at the expiration of fifteen years, many had become almost as strangers to each other.
About the year 1883 a spirit of inquiry commenced to manifest itself among the members of the Kimball family, causing them to "feel after" and evince more interest in each other's welfare. This sentiment increasing, some of the elder members at length opened a correspondence on the subject of a family reunion. By many this was deemed impracticable, owing to their scattered condition; some living in Idaho, some in southern Arizona, and others in California; and nearly all in circumstances which, it was thought, would hardly justify the necessary outlay. But the desire to meet and mingle with each other finally grew so urgent and so general among them—as though some unseen power were at work in their midst, with this object in view—that it was determined to hold the reunion, no matter what sacrifice it entailed.
During the summer of 1886, a number of the family met and appointed a Committee on Reunion, selecting for the day, June 14th, 1887, (the eighty-sixth anniversary of their father's birth) and as the place of meeting, Fuller's Hill Gardens, Salt Lake City. There came together on that memorable occasion, fully three hundred members and relatives of the Kimball family, with others who had been invited to take part in the celebration. A programme, previously arranged, consisting of speeches, recitations, readings, vocal and instrumental music, etc., was carried out to the satisfaction and enjoyment of all, and the remainder of the time spent in amusement, festivity and recreation. A spirit of peace and union, powerful and indescribable, pervaded the assembly and permeated the whole occasion, causing every heart to swell with love, and many an eye to glisten with tears of gratitude and joy. As though, indeed, the spirits of the departed were there, bringing with them the sweet influences of the celestial world, to weld anew, as links of a broken chain, the souls of those so long separated. It was, in truth, a day never to be forgotten.