The Mystery Cup

Now I know that I left some of you hanging last week on this little cup thing. I knew that my close friends and family would know what this cup is and the significance it had…to me anyway–but they were banned from telling what they knew. It would have been cheating anyway.

So I’ll tell you.

Years ago, I did some intense research for a book I was writing called, “Ellie’s Gold.” It took place in the year 1897 when the Utah pioneers had officially been in the valley for 50 years. Salt Lake City had a huge Jubilee celebration that lasted nearly a week. The activities included parades, fireworks, games, exhibits, parties, carnivals, and concerts…just to name a few.  I’d read in and old newspaper that in commemoration of the event, the city had a special “Jubilee Cup” made that showed scenes from the “old pioneer days.” If a person wanted one–back in 1897–they had to mail order it for $1.00.  In my book, I had the family send for one. When it arrived, this is what Ellie said:

Now, I’d seen one of these cups in the Pioneer museum many years ago and it made my heart just skip a beat. There it was–for real. I even got so brave as to ask the lady at the desk if I could look at it up close and maybe even touch it…just for a second. She looked like I’d pinched her cat and said, “Why no dear.” She was a terrible sharer.

I was crushed.

So there we were, April and I, a zillion years later in the antique shop and there it sat behind the glass case.

Only this time, the lady said, “Would you like to hold it?”

“YES!” I said. There’s a slight chance I might have screamed a little. But the lady just smiled at me and put the cup in my hand. A real live, 106 year old Jubilee cup, that somebody ordered from the newspaper, and drank water out of for a long, long time and then tucked away in the attic somewhere until it was clean forgotten, for years and years by almost everybody.


And it’s my very own now.

If you come over, I’ll let you hold it…

because some people know how to share real good.



17 Replies to “The Mystery Cup”

  1. I thought it had something to do with the book. Too bad I am not a close friend. 🙁 I probably did know that information but it is safely locked away in my mind. I need to find that key somewhere. 😉

  2. I love pioneer history! That is so amazing! I’d be just as giddy. Can I read your book and hold your cup? I’ll be right over if you let me!

  3. I LOVE the way you explain things. I knew what it was and it was STILL exciting to read about it. I probably got a little choked up even. I’m so glad you can hold that cup ALL you want now. 🙂 I love seeing what makes people SO happy! It’s always so different from person to person.

  4. You wrote a book??!! Is there any talent you DON’T possess Launi?! What an awesome treasure to find and one of these days, I would love to read your book…and hold your cup!

  5. Had no idea that you wrote “Ellie’s Gold”!! We will have to check it out again and read it…now knowing that we “know” the author!!! 🙂

  6. Yeaaah…that’s me. I guess most people don’t really know because I haven’t written an official “book” in a few years. I have a few in my head…but I’ve been blogging instead. It’s sort of writing… :}

  7. Well, they are just middle-grade readers, but of course you’re welcome to read them…and hold the cup. :}

  8. Remember when that girl in your class did a report on the Jubilee cup and showed one and then THREW it in her backpack? You said you nearly fainted. haha–now we have our own!!

  9. You guys weren’t into middle-grade readers back then. You probably knew I was a writer, but it was no big deal at the time. And YOU are family…so there.

  10. Even I know what this is as it was just on antiques roadshow on monday!!! good on ya, mate! a very big deal.

  11. Oh, believe me–there’s plenty of things I can’t do. Keeping my mouth shut comes to mind. haha…

  12. Wow! What an amazing find! I’m glad that cup found its home with you, someone who will appreciate it. I can only imagine how exciting that must have been for you and would have loved to have been there to see your delight.

  13. Is there a reason that I can’t see any of your updates anymore. This is the last one that I can see. I type in the usual address and it only pulls this open. I have missed your last 2 posts :(.

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