Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Ann Prior Jarvis Diary — March 10, 1886

John Henry Smith. From Wikipedia.

[This is the first entry in the diary. It is out of order by two years. The next entries will be from 1884.]

March 10 [1886] We have been blest this conference with the teachings of Apostol John Henery Smith it appears to me we should never do wrong if we had such men with us all the time but we are left to ourselves and how weak we are  When we had Apostols with us all the time we was careless.  I think we shall see the time when visits will be few and far between and we shall have to [stand or] fall. Charley Maggie and Heber is living [at Nutrioso]. At [...] Sam at Mexico

John Henry Smith — John Henry Smith (1848-1911) was an apostle of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from 1880-1911. He was taking a short trip to the Southern settlements and his diary noted the day before this entry, "Pleasant. A Temple Association was Incorporated today."
Charley — Ann and George's adopted son Charles Godfrey Defriez Jarvis (1855-1919) was married to their daughter Margaret Jarvis, and they were living at the time in Nutrioso, Arizona. His father was a doctor, and Charley had picked up some medical skills, and he also later attended dental school in Chicago and ran a photography studio in St. Johns, Arizona.

Maggie — Daughter Margaret Jarvis Jarvis (1857-1934), married to Charles Godfrey Defriez Jarvis, living in Arizona, had four children at the time: Margaret Godfrey "Maggie," Annie, Stella, and Charles Reuel.
Heber — Heber Jarvis (1860-1953) was Ann's eighth child. He was born right after they arrived in Salt Lake City, the family including Ann just walked across the plains. He was living in Arizona, married to Susan Janet Smith, with one child, Heber Jarvis, and one (Jesse Rulon) on the way.
Sam — Son Samuel Walter Jarvis (1855-1923) was married to Frances "Fanny" Godfrey Defriez (the sister of Charles Defriez Jarvis) and was living in Mexico. Sam and Fanny had four children at this time: Samuel Jr., George, William Heber, and Frances.

Overson, Margaret Godfrey Jarvis. George Jarvis and Joseph George De Friez Genealogy. Mesa, Arizona: M.G. Jarvis Overson, 1957.
Smith, John H. and Jean Bickmore White, ed., "Chapter 2A: Time of Trials 1885-1892" in Church, State, Politics: The Diaries of John Henry Smith. Salt Lake City, Utah: Signature Books and Smith Research Associates, 1990, http://signaturebooks.com/2010/04/church-state-and-politics-the-diaries-of-john-henry-smith/.

Monday, December 30, 2013

The Journal of Ann Prior Jarvis, 1884-1899

Ann Prior Jarvis. Picture from Washington County DUP.

Ann Prior Jarvis (1829-1913) started a diary in 1884 [1] and kept it regularly for several years and then sporadically through 1899. Ann and her husband George Jarvis were English immigrants and members of the original 1861 Cotton Mission to St. George, Washington County, Utah Territory.

Ann's diary includes autobiographies, business notes, addresses, patriarchal blessings, and other contents. 

Many entries are brief and repetitious, but can be used in conjunction with other existing records to help create a vital record of the community, provide a glimpse into the day-to-day life of the family, and provide historical context. For example, the question came up in the Jarvis Family Organization whether the Jarvis family had been present in 1899 at Lorenzo Snow's well-known tithing speech. A glance at her diary suggested that members of the family had indeed attended. (George and Ann Prior Jarvis and "The Windows of Heaven.") In another case, another family had not kept a careful record of the death of their ancestor's first wife, but Ann had noted the occasion of the woman's funeral. (Jennett Potter Oxborrow.)

Over the next several years, I will be serializing and annotating her diary, a few entries at a time. [2] Many entries are not earth-shattering. For example:
19 [May 1884] Mon[day] Weather changable
One of the first things you will notice as you read her entries is that she was in poor health. Her health was often so poor that she couldn't get around, but the family had somehow managed to have a horse and buggy for her use and that provides some of the folksy drama and social interactions during the first years of the diary.

So, single entries might be underwhelming, but taken altogether, her diary is an intimate portrait of an immigrant family, not wealthy by any means, but fairly secure two decades years after they were the first settlers to drive their wagon onto their newly assigned town lot in St. George.

[1] The original copy of Ann's diary is not known to be in existence. There are various photocopies held by family members and archives and a digital copy has been kindly provided by Mark Jarvis on the family web site. (Jarvis Family Web.) This copy of the diary is called "Book C" so it is possible that she created other diaries previous to this one.

[2] I will begin with the March 10, 1886 entry since that's when she started keeping her diary reliably and go from there. I will add the autobiographies and other materials later. I will be preserving her spelling but will add light punctuation as needed. I will index the diary separately from Ann Prior Jarvis's main index entry, so these diary entries will be found under "APJ Diary (year)."

Jarvis, Ann Prior. Journal of Ann Prior Jarvis, Book C, 1884-1899. Digital scan of photocopy of holograph, George and Ann Prior Jarvis Family Web Site, accessed February 29, 2012, http://george-and-ann-prior-jarvis.org.

Monday, December 16, 2013

The James and Mary McNair Hamilton Family: Paisley to Glasgow to Salt Lake City

I've never done much work on the Hamiltons, but a relative from Australia contacted me today with a question, so here are the pictures and some basic resources on the family. To start, here is the family line:

Beverly Glade Wessman (1924-2008)

William Lester Glade (1894-1952)

Annie Harris Hamilton Glade (1873-1957)

James Harris Hamilton (1838-1887) and Mary McNair Hamilton (1836-1922)
Standing (L to R): John, Elizabeth or Mary.
Seated in chairs: Elizabeth or Mary, James, Mary.
Seated in front: Annie.

John Hamilton (1817-) and Ann Harris Hamilton McQueen (1819-1892)
Note: This is the picture I've had labeled as John, but looking at the age of the picture, it is John Hamilton, the boy shown in the picture directly above. I am showing it here to state that it is not our ancestor John Hamilton, and I have removed it from the listing of the family found at the top left of this blog.

Here are some more pictures of the James and Mary Hamilton Family.

James Hamilton.
Mary McNair Hamilton.

The Hamilton entries in the Church Emigration Records. See Mormon Migration.
Salt Lake Herald, "Died," November 25, 1887, 5.

James Hamilton in the Salt Lake death registers. Entry 14172. This is really a fascinating group of deaths: note Eliza R. Snow, the widow of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young, and other notable names.
Since James Hamilton was president of the Glasgow Branch there will be plenty about him in the history of the Church. See, for example:

Hunter, John, "Glasgow District Meeting," Millennial Star 45, No. 48, 465. 
Here is the obituary for daughter Agnes:

"Died," Millennial Star 43, No. 18, 288.
Here is Mary's entry in the Salt Lake Death Registers:

Her death certificate has the same information, so I will not include it here.

Here's Mary's funeral notice. I've read the Deseret News through the 18th and don't see a standard obituary.
Deseret News, "Funeral Notice," April 14, 1922, 2.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Survey: The Springthorpe Family

Morgan Family

My father, sister, and I are working on documenting the Springthorpe family and figuring out which children listed on Family Tree belong in the family.

Here's a brief summary. First, the line we're working on:

Jessie Maxine Morgan Tanner

Jessie Christensen Morgan

Frances Ann Thomas Christensen

Adeline Springthorpe Sparks Thomas

James and Frances Springthorpe
Leicestershire countryside, Flickr.

James Springthorpe married Frances Springthorpe on November 11, 1816 in Derbyshire, England.

James was born in 1785 in Leicestershire; Frances was born in 1797 in Lincolnshire. They tended to live in Leicestershire and Staffordshire after their marriage.




Staffordshire, and West Bromwich in particular, were an active area for the early missionary efforts of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. That may be where Adeline Springthorpe was baptized in 1854, and she may have known noted missionary Cyrus Wheelock, the author of "Ye Elders of Israel."

Here is the family in the 1841 England and Wales Census.

1841 England Census, Wednesbury, South Offlow, West Bromwich, Staffordshire, England.

Jas Springthorpe, 50
Frances Springthorpe, 40
James Springthorpe, 18
John Springthorpe, 16
Adaline Springthorpe, 15
Charles Springthorpe, 10
Thomas Springthorpe, 5
Wm Howe, 20
Mary [Springthorpe] Howe, 20
Hannah Howe, 2
Augustus Howe, 6 Mo
Thos Smallwood, 20
Geo Bentley, 20
Wm Smith, 20

James Springthorpe died in 1849 in Ashby de la Zouch, Leicestershire.

Here is the remaining family in the 1851 England and Wales Census.

1851 England Census, Thringstone, Ashby de la Zouch, Leicestershire.

Francis Springthorpe, 52
Adeline Springthorpe, 23
Charles Springthorpe, 21
Francis Springthorpe, 17
Ayashe Howe, 16

Problem: This census lists a male child, Francis. The next census lists Frances as a female, married name Matchett. (She was probably married to Francis Matchett. Yes, Frances married Francis. Is this the same Frances that later married David Thomas as his third wife? That Frances had two sons, reportedly with the last name Hewitt. We need to figure out more about Frances!)

Here are Frances and a few family members in the 1861 England and Wales Census.

1861 England Census, Whitwick, Ashby de la Zouch, Leicestershire.

John Springthorpe, 34
Jessie [Doman] Springthorpe, 32
Hyrum Springthorpe, 3
Francis Springthorpe, 64
Francis Matchett, 26

The census notes that Frances was blind due to old age. She died in 1862.

Adeline, now married to Elijah Sparks and probably widowed, was waiting until after her mother died to emigrate to America. A month later, Adeline was on the John J. Boyd, sailing for America. On the ship she met Welsh widower David Nathan Thomas. They were married in Utah.

Adeline's brother John Springthorpe and his family emigrated in 1869 and 1870.

I can't find emigration information for Francis Springthorpe/Hewitt and James and John Hewitt. 

And that's a brief summary of the current state of research on the family.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Amanda Hall Wessman's Headstone

Amanda is buried at the base of this tree. 
If you look closely, you can see the orange flag marking her headstone. 

After several unexpected delays, Amanda Hall Wessman’s headstone has finally been set. We are so grateful to all of those who donated time and money to help with this special endeavor.

A little about the headstone and its design. It is gray granite, similar to the stone the Salt Lake Temple is made out of. It is the largest stone the cemetery would allow, but we had a lot of information we wanted to put on the headstone!

Amanda Hall Wessman

On the left side of Amanda’s headstone is an image of the Salt Lake Temple. The image represents all her family sacrificed to follow their beliefs and become an eternal family. Fifteen days after Johan’s death in 1898, Amanda had his temple work completed, by proxy, and they were sealed in the Salt Lake Temple for time and all eternity. On January 22, 1902, Amanda and her living children gathered in the Salt Lake Temple to be sealed as a family. As part of that special day, Johan and Amanda’s two children, who passed away in Sweden in 1881, were sealed to their parents as well. 

Johan Bengtsson Wessman
Since Johan is buried in an unmarked grave in Kamas, Utah, we decided to put an image of a sailing ship representing Johan and what he did for a living to support his family.  It is also symbolic of the family leaving their ancestral home and coming to America. (Wind powered ships were no longer in use when they immigrated, but a sailing ship looks better on a headstone than a steam powered ship.)
Johan, Amanda and their seven children are buried in many different places, three of them in unknown locations. For this reason, we felt it was important to list all of the family’s names on the headstone. 
Back, left to right: Henry, Herbert, Joseph.
Seated, left to right: Fanny, Amanda, Bertha.
Photo taken 1906 in Salt Lake City, Utah.

This headstone is a fitting memorial to Johan, Amanda and their children who worked hard and sacrificed so much.  Because of this, we, their descendants, have much to be grateful for.

For those of you who would like to visit Amanda’s grave, in person or virtually, click here.  This will take you to Billion Graves website where you can view an image, obtain a map and get directions.
Here is a list of the rest of the family and where they are buried: 
  • Johan Bengtsson is buried in Kamas, Utah, unknown location
  • Fanny Constantia is buried here in Salt Lake City Cemetery, Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Bertha Maria is buried here, a short walk from her mother's grave, in Wasatch Lawn Memorial Park, Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Gerda Hildegard is buried in Sweden, unknown location
  • Anders Johan Herbert is buried in Sweden, unknown location
  • John Herbert is buried here in Salt Lake City Cemetery, Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Henry Richard Emanuel is buried here in Salt Lake City Cemetery, Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Joseph Harold Moroni is buried here, by his mother, in Wasatch Lawn Memorial Park, Salt Lake City, Utah
The view from Amanda's grave, looking east. 
The yellow and red flowers are by her headstone.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Kind Angels Watch Her Sleeping Dust...

There was a picture of Lydia Tanner's gravestone on FindaGrave, but the poem was not readable, so I put out a request on FindAGrave for a new picture. A kind local volunteer, Thomas Moné, took a lovely clear photo, used here by permission.

The inscription says, in typical early 19th century language:

In memory of
consort of John Tanner,
who died May 31st 1825,
aged 41 years, 6 months
& 13 days.

Kind angels watch her sleeping dust,
Till Jesus comes to raise the just.
Then may she wake in sweet surprise.
And in her saviour's image rise.

The poem was used on gravestones in the 19th century as widely as the American South and Australia. I haven't been able to track down its origin, but it was in print in an 1860s memorial catalog.

The willow-tree-and-urn motif on the top of the gravestone became common in the late 18th century. It symbolized, simply, mourning.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Some Thoughts on Veteran's Day

A Brief Genealogical Survey of Our Military Servicemen

James Tanner, one of our blog authors, was in the service during the Vietnam War.

Wallace Tanner served in the Army Air Forces during the Second World War:

John Wessman served in the Army during the Second World War. 
His many brothers also served in the war:

Roy Tanner served in Europe during the First World War:

Lester Glade enlisted in the Army but the Armistice 
was signed before he was sent overseas:

John Morgan served in the Civil War, 
fighting for the Union with Wilder's Lightning Brigade:

Samuel Shepherd served in the War of 1812, 
spending time in a prisoner of war camp in Canada:

A number of ancestors fought in the Revolutionary War. 
Here are our Vermont soldiers: The Green Mountain Boys.

Going back further in history, a number of family lines have 
military connections to the French-Indian Wars:

Looking beyond the ocean, Alexander Hill fought at the 
Battle of the Nile during the Napoleonic Wars:

And there are more, but that's what I can remember off the top of my head.

A Personal Note about Observances Around the World This Week

There's a quote going around Facebook right now, misattributed to Winston Churchill, “We sleep safely at night because rough men stand ready to visit violence on those who would harm us.” Besides the fact that it doesn't sound like Churchill, it was originally attributed to George Orwell, who evidently also didn't say it.

Right now I am helping prepare a series of posts and arrange a number of guest posts for Keepapitchinin: The Mormon History Blog on the topic of German Memorial Day (Volkstrauertag), which is coming up this Sunday. The series will begin this Wednesday and run until we run out of posts.

It has been a deeply emotional experience to process and write about the experience of the German Latter-day Saints during the wars of the 20th Century. The soldiers who wrote back home about their experiences, much like any young men anywhere in the world pressed into military service, were not "rough men." They were tender-hearted soldier-missionaries, and like so many American and British soldiers, many of them lie buried in graves all over Europe, having given the ultimate sacrifice for their beloved homeland.

(Do not mistake my comments as approval for the German regimes during either war.)

Don't miss today's post at Keepapitchinin"Every Effort to Promote Love": Changing the Focus of Armistice Day, and let us use the observances of Memorial Day and Veteran's Day to commit ourselves to peace and justice around the world.