Friday, January 18, 2013

Complete List of John Tanner's Wives and Children

I've been doing some work on John Tanner and his family. I thought it would be a simple task to put his census records into a blog post, but it has been a complex project and is still under way. 

For the time being, here is a list of the Tanner family that I put on Family Tree the other day. Two of John Tanner's wives and six of his children predeceased him. Reminder: John Tanner had a very large family but he was not married polygamously. Some of his sons were, and the Tanners tended to have large families in any case, so he has an extensive descendancy.

I have already seen that some of the information from the book used as the source for this family list is not entirely accurate. Eventually, I will put up information about all aspects of the Tanner family history.

* * *

John Tanner (1778-1850) married (1) Tabitha Bently (1780-1801). Their child:
(1-1) Elisha Bently Tanner (1801-1858)

John Tanner (1778-1850) married (2) Lydia Stewart (1773-1825). Their children:
(2-1) William Stewart Tanner (1802-1875)
(2-2) Matilda Tanner (Randall) (1804-1888)
(2-3) Willard Tanner (1806-1807)
(2-4) Sidney Tanner (1809-1895)
(2-5) John Joshua Tanner (1811-1896)
(2-6) Romelia Tanner (1814-1814)
(2-7) Nathan Tanner (1815-1910)
(2-8) Edward Tanner, twin (1817-1817)
(2-9) Edwin Tanner, twin (1817-1817)
(2-10) Louisa Maria Tanner (Lyman) (1818-1906)*
(2-11) Martin Henry Tanner (1822-1907)
(2-12) Albert Miles Tanner (1825-1879)

John Tanner (1778-1850) married (3) Elizabeth Beswick (1803-1890). Their children:
(3-1) Myron Tanner (1826-1903)
(3-2) Seth Benjamin Tanner (1828-1918)
(3-3) Freeman Everton Tanner (1830-1918)
(3-4) Joseph Smith Tanner (1833-1910)
(3-5) Philomelia Tanner (1835-1838)
(3-6) David Dan Tanner (1838-1918)
(3-7) Sariah Tanner (1840-1853)
(3-8) Francis Tanner (1843-1844)

*Louisa Maria Tanner Lyman went by the name "Maria" so she often shows up in family records as "Maria Louisa," but correspondence, census, death records, and the book John Tanner and His Family show her correct name as "Louisa Maria."

Tanner, George S. John Tanner and His Family: A History-Biography of John Tanner of Lake George, New York, Born August 15, 1778, Hopkinton, Rhode Island, Died April 13, 1850, at South Cottonwood, Utah. Salt Lake City: John Tanner Family, 1974.


  1. I think it's interesting to see that 3 of John's children died in 1918 (Seth, Freeman, & David), likely in the Influenza pandemic (that also killed Pres. Joseph F. Smith and some 20-40 million others around the world). In any case, I thought it pretty remarkable that sons of John Tanner lived to see WWI).

  2. That is curious that they all died in 1918, but it seems to be a coincidence. Neither Freeman nor David Dan died of the flu. I don't know what Seth died of -- his death certificate doesn't seem to be available from the State of Arizona -- but it was probably just old age.

    I've been exceedingly busy recently, but I've found a little time to get some work done on the Tanner line, and I should blog that as I find it.

  3. I guess my hypothesis was incorrect - it was worth a shot. :) 1918 was just the time for the last of the Tanner children to go home.

    I also never realized that John was 64-65 when his youngest was born (his wife was 39-40).

    Also, do you know if all John's children (except maybe the oldest) join the church?

  4. Did they all join the Church? I don't know. Elisha didn't. William Stewart's and Matilda's temple work was done the year after Matilda died so William probably didn't join the Church. Matilda may or may not have joined the Church. She moved to Ohio with her family but no further. I assume the rest would have been members of the Church even if they didn't stay with the Church. I just posted a brief history of Elisha today — he was a medical doctor in Manhattan — and I'll eventually get to the history of the other children who didn't move West.

  5. My father wrote the "John Tanner Family" (Maurice Tanner). There is such sweet memories of him as I read of how far reaching the work has progressed. The other day I met with three friends - each of us from a different son of John Tanner! Here in Cardston, AB where we have retired - there is a large Tanner family connection through Joseph Smith Tanner, Nathan Tanner and Henry Tanner. I grew up in Arizona so my Sidney Tanner line was in Utah and Arizona. There has to be great rejoicing on the other side of the veil.

    1. That's lovely, Marsha. The work that your father and others have done has really helped created a sense of family for the Tanners, and that's valuable societally and psychologically, as noted in this write-up:

      The Family Stories That Bind Us

  6. You know, I really love reading about John Tanner. He is such inspiration to me, and for trek I am going to be Philomelia because she will get to live on and make the trek through me, even though she didn't on her own.

  7. You know, I really love reading about John Tanner. He is such inspiration to me, and for trek I am going to be Philomelia because she will get to live on and make the trek through me, even though she didn't on her own.

  8. When I was in College, I was in a history class and as often happens, I was put in a group for a group product. There were about 5 of us in the group. After we met each other we figured out that all 5 of us were descendants of John Tanner. :) We even had a Lyman in the group. I descend from Seth. I don't know that he died from the flu. But he was 90 years old when he died.