Beehive Homes Community Spotlight: Joan Ludlow
Every community has people in it that to family. Spanish Fork was a bustling development make it great. I’m talking about salt-of- by the time Joan was a teenager the-earth kinda people. Join us as each with people flocking to the area because month as we highlight one of our longtime of inexpensive housing and job opportunities members in the community. in construction and at Geneva Steel.
Joan Ludlow was born in July of 1929 Joan started working on Main Street at at her grandmother’s house on 100 South the local switch board as an operator. This in Spanish Fork. Joan and her older brother was where she would meet and fall in love Clair grew up humble in Spanish Fork. with Gordon Ludlow. Her father left when she was just 3 years Gordon and Joan went to Spanish Fork old, and her mother Ruby Jex Hales raised High School at the same time, although them alone while working several jobs to Gordon was several grades above her. He provide for her children. Ruby would never was drafted into WWII out of high school remarry. One of her jobs was to help in and served honorably in the U.S. Navy. the family business started by her father. Upon returning home, Gordon started Jex and Sons Broom Factory was established working at Geneva Steel. He caught the in the 1850s in Spanish Fork. Ruby’s bus every day for work in front of the brothers helped run that side of the switch board office. After many sightings business while she and her mother ran a through the window by Joan, her co-workers seamstress business called the Thread convinced her to go out with him. They Shed. were set up on a blind date of sorts that
Joan was raised within the hustle and ended up being a date to a wedding of all bustle of entrepreneurship. Her mother places. “The food was good and the atmosphere worked tirelessly to create a good life for pleasant,” Joan said. Gordon and Clair and Joan. Joan and Clair learned the Joan would date six months before getting principles of hard work and commitment married in 1950. They just celebrated their
wedding anniversary. Joan and Gordon lived on 600 North from that time to now. They raised six children in their humble home. “I told God I would have as many kids as he wanted me to, and I guess six was enough,” Joan said. The Ludlows grew up with little means; Grandma Ruby made everything the kids wore, even their underwear. Joan was a master in the kitchen; she canned everything under the sun and had a beautiful garden every year. She looked after her mother Ruby with a special love until Ruby passed away of old age.
Joan was a prankster. She enjoyed all holidays but especially enjoyed April Fool’s Day. “I always packed Gordon’s lunch for work. I once packed him nothing but chicken bones. When he sat down for lunch, all he had were bare bones to eat — of course I packed him some money so he could buy lunch that day,” Joan said. The kids would always worry and stir about what Mom would trick them with every year.
Joan really loved traditions. Christmas, Thanksgiving and Easter were special times for family get-togethers and building relationships. “One year Gordon talked me into going for a ride in his motorcycle sidecar — I reluctantly agreed, and he crashed the sidecar into our tree, right in the front yard. That was the last time I ever went for a ride on any of his motorcycles,” Joan said.
Joan now lives at Beehive Homes of Spanish Fork, living the quiet life, thinking of times that have passed and taking peace in knowing her children are well. She has 20 grandchildren and 25 great-grandchildren. Thank you, Joan Ludlow, for raising an amazing family and helping to make our community great. If you would like to contact Joan, you may write or visit her at Beehive Homes of Spanish Fork, 858 E. 100 South, Spanish Fork, UT 84660.
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