Monday, June 21, 2010

The Cripps Family Emigrates

Charles and Elizabeth Cripps emigrated to Utah in 1863 and 1861. Five of their children died at a young age and were buried in England. Four of their children emigrated to Utah (although it's not clear whether Frederick stayed there). Four of their children stayed in England, but at least one of them visited Utah many years later.

Here are some notes about each family member.

Father: Charles Cripps (1863)
Ship: Amazon
Wagon Company: unidentified

Charles Cripps' entry in the Pioneer Overland Trail database says that, "Evidence from emigration and church (Perpetual Emigrating Fund) records proves he traveled to Utah in 1863."

His biography by Ida Thayle Cripps DeWitt Smith says:
It was yet two years before Charles could get enough money to join [his family] in America. He sailed on the ship Amazon a capacity of 1600 tons, 4 June 1863, and arrived in New York City 18 July 1863. Destination: Florence, Nebraska. The ship was a church-chartered vessel sailed by Mr. Hovey, Capt. There were 882 persons aboard. William Bramall was president of the company. Charles was 68 years old. He was issued ticket #96 and he used 420 (some form of currency) from London account of the church’s emigration fund. The group he was with were from “Coventry.”

Charles Dickens, the great English novelist, was on that ship, the Amazon. Dickens described the ship at Liverpool Harbor, England. “A Mormon emigrant ship with more than 800 Mormon converts…in their degree, the pick and flower of England” and concluded with these comments:

What is in store for this poor people on the shores of the Great Salt Lake, what happy delusions they are laboring under now, on what miserable blindness their eyes may be opened then, I do not pretend to say. But I went aboard their ship to bear testimony against them if they deserved it, as I believed they would; to my great astonishment they did not deserve it; and my predispositions and tendencies must not affect me as an honest witness. I went over the Amazon’s side, feeling it impossible to deny that, so far, some remarkable influence had produced a remarkable result, which better known influences have often missed.
Here is another biography of Charles Cripps. Here is an article about the sailing of the Amazon.

Mother: Elizabeth Baker Cripps (1861)
Wagon Company: unidentified
Traveled with: daughter Emma Hodges and her family

Here is what her biography says about her trip:
She left from Liverpool, England, on April 8, 1861 at the age of 60 on the ship the "Underwriter" with her daughter Emma Godbe Cripps Hodges, her husband William Augustus Hodges and their oldest son. She left her husband Charles behind. It would be two long years later until she would be reunited with him in Utah.

Elizabeth was skilled as a nurse. This was a profession that the pioneers were thankful for many times. She was the nurse who delivered her daughter's baby in the wilderness outside Florence, Nebraska in July of 1861. The baby was named Florence because they were approaching Florence, Nebraska where they were to meet the wagons on the "Down and Back" teams from Salt Lake.

The trip to Keokuk, Iowa, was a very difficult journey for them. They had no wagon team so day by day; they walked by the side of someone else's wagon. Elizabeth had a vase that meant very much to her. It was her only possession from England. She refused to leave it behind. As a result, she carried this vase in the folds of her apron as she walked along with her pregnant daughter, Emma. The wagon master had told them that each person could only bring 20 pounds. This consisted only of food and clothing.

Child #1: Elizabeth Mary Cripps Spicer (1856)
Born: 7 May 1826
Died: 25 April 1898

Ship: Horizon
Wagon Company: Dan Jones/John A. Hunt
Traveled with: husband William Spicer

Their wagon company entered the Salt Lake Valley several weeks after the Martin and Willie Handcart Pioneers. Here is Elizabeth's obituary.

Child #2: Henry Charles Cripps
Born: 16 November 1827
Died: 9 Dec 1827

Died as an infant.

Child #3: Caroline Cripps Billings
Born: 6 April 1829
Died: after 1910

Remained in England with her husband, Henry Billings, and five children.

Child #4: Sarah Ann Cripps Hayward (1853)
Born: 1 August 1830
Died: 15 February 1932

Wagon Company: Jacob Gates
Traveled with: husband Gammon, daughter Sarah, and son Henry

Here is Sarah Ann Hayward's biography.

Child #5: Frederick George Cripps (1880)
Born: 11 April 1832
Died: 21 July 1916

Ship: Wisconsin
Traveled with: his five children, Ada (11), Charles (8), Henry (5), Frederick (3), and Alice (infant). 

Frederick's wife, Eliza Hamblin, died about 1879, so Frederick was taking his children to be raised by his elderly mother in Utah. The youngest was an infant. That must have been quite a trip across the ocean! Ada shows up in the genealogy as Ada Cripps Spicer, married to Daniel Spencer Wallace, so she was probably adopted by her aunt Elizabeth Spicer.

Child #6: Eliza Jane Cripps
Born: 26 July 1833
Died: 10 May 1935
Did not emigrate. I have no record of a marriage. This daughter is not listed in the 1841 census although she would have been seven or eight years old at the time, and she is also not listed in the 1851 census.

Child #7: John William Cripps
Born: 17 December 1834
Died: 27 February 1917

Stayed in England. Married to Mary Jane Woodward. They had 12 children. His great-granddaughter Ida Smith wrote a biography of Charles Cripps which I quote above in the section about Charles Cripps. She notes that John Cripps visited Utah, and his grandson Percy Charles Cripps moved to America.

Here is the record of John's 1898 Utah visit.

And here is Percy's Declaration of Intention to become a U.S. citizen. Note the statement that he had to sign.

I also recently received a kind email from one of John's great-great-great grandsons, who lives in England. It's wonderful to think that there is still some contact between different branches of the Cripps family, 149 years after Elizabeth left England. Their family was very important to Charles and Elizabeth, and I imagine they would be pleased.

Child #8: Ellen Cripps
Born: 9 April 1835
Died: as a child

The name of this child is from the family records. There is no record of her in New Family Search. Should she be added? Does anyone have a source for her birth?

Child #9: Daughter
Born: 9 May 1836
Died: stillborn

Child #10: James Alfred Cripps
Born: 13 April 1837
Died: 30 August 1846

Child #11: Emma Goadbey Cripps Hodges (1861)
Born: 1 February 1839
Died: 14 February 1924

Wagon Company: unindentified
Traveled with: mother Elizabeth, husband William Hodges, son William (2), and starting in Nebraska, her newborn daughter Florence.

Child #12: Stephen Baker Cripps
Born: 9 May 1840
Died: 4 August 1881

Stayed in England. Married to Ann Dredge George. I don't have a record of any children.

Child #13: Donald Edwin Cripps
Born: 4 October 1844
Died: 1845

Coming soon ...  census records about the Cripps family

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