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Mary Andrus photographs

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS P 1462

Scope and Contents

This collection includes black and white photographs, mostly portraits, of various members of the Erickson and Andrus families. It also includes black and white photographs of the Spanish Fork Relief Society from 1929 to 1962. Some feature portraits of the Relief Society presidencies, and others large groups of women gathered together for events such as centennial and birthday celebrations.

No negatives for this collection are on file.


  • approximately 1929-1962


Conditions Governing Access

Open for public research. Items kept in cold storage; access requires 24 hours advance notice.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from Mary Andrus photographs must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Board of Curators.

Biographical History

Mary Erickson Higginson Andrus (1890-1975) was the child of Mormon pioneers from Iceland and long time resident of Spanish Fork, Utah. She served in various organizations during the course of her life, principally in the Icelandic Association of Utah, the Icelandic Genealogical Society, and the Relief Society. She was also a librarian at the Spanish Fork Public Library.

Mary Erickson was born February 18th, 1890 at Spanish Fork, Utah. Her father, Eyjolfur Eiriksson, and her mother, Jarthrudur Runolfsdottir, were immigrants from Iceland, and had their last name changed to Erickson when they became citizens of the United States. After arriving from Iceland, Eyjolfur and Jarthrudur traveled to Spanish Fork, Utah, where they built a home on the corner of 700 East and 200 South. It was there that Mary grew up with her two sisters Ellenborg, and Sigurveig, and her three brothers Noah Erastus, Erick Ronald, and Matthew Thorgur. As a child Mary worked in the fields thinning and toping sugar beet. She also worked as cook for some traveling sheep shearers, often traveling as far as Verdi, Utah, Duchesne, Utah, and even Wyoming. When Mary's father died in 1907 they received much-needed assistance from their next-door neighbors, the McKell family. During this time Mary's mother Jarthrudur made a living quilting, sewing rug rags, knitting socks and doing other handiwork.

Mary married Ralph Daniel Higginson on June 5th, 1912 in the Salt Lake City Temple. They had four children: Ruth, Sarah, Phyllis, and Ralph. After six years of marriage Mary's husband died October 29th, 1918 of influenza. Fortuitously Mary lived next door to her sister Sarah and they were able to assist each other in the care of their respective children.

Mary married Alma Archibald Andrus on July 16th, 1943. Archibald owned a small farm in Leland, just southwest of Spanish Fork, where he raised cows, pigs, chickens and sheep. As a family they would take a short vacation each year, and visit Yellowstone, Texas, California, Nevada, Colorado, and the National Parks in Utah. In December of 1967 Mary and Archibald sold the farm and moved to Spanish Fork where they bought a home located at 510 East 300 North. Mary died January 30th, 1975 almost two years after her husband, and is buried in the Spanish Fork City Cemetery.

During her lifetime Mary was active in both civic and religious activities. She served as a Relief Society president, World War I registrar, member of the Price Control Administration (for which she received a certificate of award from United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt), secretary of the Icelandic Association of Utah, member of the Icelandic Genealogical Society, and librarian at the Spanish Fork Library.


2 folders (0.16 linear ft.)

Language of Materials



This collection includes photographs of various members of the Erickson and Andrus families, and of the Spanish Fork Relief Society form 1929 to 1962, including photos of the Relief Society presidencies and centennial and birthday celebrations.

Physical Location

L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah 84602.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated; Ruth M. Lewis and Phyllis H. Ashley; 1975.


Photographs (Photograph Archives).

Related Materials

See also the Mary Andrus papers, 1902-1975 (MSS 1462).

Separated Materials

See also the Mary Higginson papers (MSS 1462), concerning Mary Andrus' personal history.

Processing Information

Processed; Nathan Everett; 2007.

Register of Mary Andrus photographs
Abe Austin
2012 February 23
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English in Latin script.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States