As 85-year-old President Lorenzo Snow struggles to vanquish the two million dollar indebtedness of the Mormon church in 1899, he feels inspired to journey from Salt Lake City by train and ... See full summary »
As 85-year-old President Lorenzo Snow struggles to vanquish the two million dollar indebtedness of the Mormon church in 1899, he feels inspired to journey from Salt Lake City by train and carriage to St. George in southern Utah. Along the way he witnesses the effects of severe drought. The next day, in the St. George Tabernacle, he receives inspiration that by paying tithing, the "windows of heaven" will open, pouring out blessings. He promises the people that they can plant crops and rain will come, then continues to preach tithing as he returns home where he awaits favorable weather reports from St. George. Written by
A steam locomotive of the vintage used at the end of the 19th Century was required for scenes of Pres. Snow's journey from Salt Lake City, and it had been assumed that one could be borrowed from the Geneva Steel Plant near the BYU studios. Several had been sitting idle there, but unfortunately it was found that they had been dismantled for scrap only six months earlier. Kennecott Copper was found to have access to an appropriate locomotive in Ely, Nevada, but it had to be used locally. Fortunately the scenery there was very similar to Modena, Utah where President Snow and his party had transferred from the train to carriages, for the last leg of his journey to St. George. See more »
[After George F. Gibbs, the secretary to Pres. Snow has been asked to arrange for President Snow's trip to St. George, known as "Utah's Dixie" due to mild weather]
George F. Gibbs (secretary to Pres. Snow):
Oh by the way, that's certainly a terrible drought they're having in St. George... driest season in many years according to reports. I do hope you don't dry up and blow away down there president.
You ought to know me better than that George, it takes more than a little "Dixie" hot air to melt this Snow.
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Disney-esquire version of story from Mormon History
The script of the movie comes from a well documented chapter in Mormon history. The movie itself (especially the original long version) has a very Walt Disney sappy happy happy feel. That's because the lead production people WERE Walt Disney alumni. The director, Wetzel Whitaker, was a Walt Disney pioneer who had worked for the studio for over 40 years.
Is it dated? Oh yes. In so many ways including the horribly bad fake beards it looks like something from 1963, which is when it was made. Kennedy was in the White House. The top movies were Lawrence of Arabia, Lilies of the Field and To Kill a Mockingbird.
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