Uncle Howard Cheney Was a Doughboy

Joseph Howard Cheney
Joseph Howard Cheney in his World War I Uniform

I have always thought this a great photo. It is only after doing some research into the military service of Howard Cheney, that I can appreciate the proud, though somewhat terrified look as he stands at attention in his uniform.

Joseph Howard Cheney

Joseph Howard Cheney, was my grandmother’s brother, making him my Great Uncle. I have come to see him as Great in another way. He was born in Jackson Hole, Wyoming on June 20, 1891, the fifth child and fourth son of Selar Cheney and Mary Alice Wilson. His childhood in Jackson Hole was probably adventurous, but could it possibly have prepared him for what was to come?

Howard, as he was called, was a young man as World War I raged across the ocean. The United States was slow to join her allies in this War, waiting and watching until officially declaring War on April 6, 1917. Howard likely read available newspapers accounts and maybe thought about this War as he worked on his ranch.

The first U.S. Draft began in June 1917 and Howard was one of the first to register on June 5, 1917. He was 25 years old. On his registration card he indicated that he had no disability or exception to service.

Private Joseph Howard Cheney

Howard enlisted on May 24, 1918. He was sent to Camp Lewis in American Lake, Washington for training. Having been to this very place earlier this year, I can picture that. Camp Lewis has now morphed into Joint Base Lewis McChord, where my son-in-law was stationed.

Howard served as a Private in Battery A 145th Field Artillery 40 Division. On August 5, 1918, he sailed on the ship Scotian from New York City to France. Unfortunately, there a few available details about his service other than that he served in France until the end of the War. Just knowing about the horrors of this war and the devastation caused to France, we can assume that it was a frightening and horrible experience. Howard was not wounded, though one must wonder if he carried home unseen wounds.

The Armistice was signed on November 11, 1918, ending this Great War. Howard left Bordeaux, France on December 23rd and arrived in Hoboken, New Jersey on January 5, 1919. He was discharged January 24, 1919 at Logan, Utah.

Article in Jackson’s Hole Courier
30 January 1919

Return to the Ranch in Jackson Hole

Howard returned to Jackson Hole January 26, 1919 and resumed ranching. He married Pearl Estella Mangum November 7, 1923. They had five children and raised four to adulthood. Howard farmed and fed his family through the Great Depression.

Howard with his children

With the entry of the United States into another World War, Howard again dutifully registered for the Draft. He was then 50 years old.

Howard died on the eve of Independence Day, July 3, 1949 in Brigham City, Utah at the relatively young age of 58.

Joseph Howard Cheney
Howard and Pearl in Brigham City

After his death, Howard’s wife Pearl applied for a Military Headstone for his grave. She was living in Brigham City, Utah at the time of the application, July 3, 1951. She had the stone marker shipped to her son-in-law Keith Shinkle of Victor, Idaho to the Wilson, Wyoming Post Office, which was on the other side of Teton Pass. This granite marker was placed on Howard’s grave in the South Park Cemetery, in Jackson, Wyoming.

Joseph Howard Cheney
Joseph H Cheney Headstone
South Park Cemetery, Jackson, Wyoming

Eliza Eggleston Barron

I would really like to have known Aunt Eliza Eggleston Barron. The glimpses we have of her, especially from her letters, give me the impression she was quite spunky and would have been an entertaining storyteller. Her life was not necessarily easy and was not very long.

Eliza’s Early Life

Eliza Eggleston Barron was born March 25, 1810 in Marcellus, Onondaga, New York. Family records had estimated her birth as 1802, but there appeared to be confusion with her sister Electa. Eliza was the youngest daughter in the family. In genealogical information sent by Orson to his father in 1876, he gave this birth date for Eliza. Eliza died November 4, 1869.

Eliza married Carr D. Barron May 9, 1840 in Owasco, Cayuga, New York. He was born February 15, 1809 in Owasco, Cayuga, New York. Eliza and Carr Barron moved from Springwater, Livingston, New York to Michigan, apparently before her sister Electa and family came.

Glimpses of Eliza’s Life through Letters

Much of the sense I get of Eliza’s personality, I gain from a letter she wrote to her brother Samuel June 8, 1862 from Groveland, Michigan. She wrote:

Groveland, June 8, 1862

“It is a long time since I have written to you. You must excuse my neglect for it is quite a task for me to write a letter. My health is not very good but I work some and attend to my business. Carr’s health is poor but he works as hard as ever. Two years ago last fall he had a fit of the palsy, the second one. It was a long time before he could work much. It hurt his speech and memory but we are mortals subject to decay. I suppose you will want to know about the children. Almon will be 21 in August next. Mary was 19 in April and Sarah 17 in May. Barton is 10. They are healthy children and a great help to us.”

Letter from Eliza Eggleston Barron to Samuel Eggleston

After this general family news and health report, she told her brother Samuel about other family members. This is what she had to say about their younger brother Ansel:

“Five years ago this summer Ansel come her head up and pockets full of gold. He said he was on his way to Pennsylvania to get some money that was a comeing to him. He staid here a week and then left and in January after he came here again poorer than Job turkeys. He said he had come from Des Moines and he had left Mary there. She had a boy and he dident know whether it was his or not. He had started for California. He staid here four weeks and then wrote to Mary to come here in about two weeks she came and such a bundle of rags you never saw. She had on an old black calico dress narrow and nasty. It was all she had. Ne bed nor bedding. We found them house, stove, chairs, bed bedding, dishes, and a cow. Through that summer and the next winter he tot into a shop to shoemake and made a living. After that he took a notion to go on his own hooks and wanted Carr to sign with him but he refused and he has been mad at me ever since. I think he is kind of ticklish property. He is now at Holley a shoemaking. They now get a good living.”

Later in the later she mentions, as if she forgot and then just remembered, “”Ansel has 3 boys.” Eliza also shared with Samuel some information about a contact with another Eggleston regarding genealogy. She seemed to want direction from Samuel about how to respond to this person.

“I had a letter the other day from Rev. A. Eggleston, Broome Co., N.Y. He wants me to give him the births, marriages and deaths of my father, mother, brothers and sisters, all except you and their children and grandchildren, if they have any, and all their names and ages, who they married and their occupation. I think he must be crazy. He give his address Broome Co., N.Y. but not the Post Office where it was mailed was rubbed off. . . Write as soon as you get this and tell me if you know what postoffice to direct my letter to him. Your affectionate sister

Eliza Barron

Write soon and direct your letter to Goodrichville, Genesee Co., Mich.”

If this Rev. A. Eggleston was crazy, as Eliza says, then I must be too. I understand the mindset of a genealogist trying to gather family information. In fact Eliza’s nephew Orson asked for the same kind of information when he visited her family while on his mission.

Eliza’s Passing

In a letter to Samuel dated March 5, 1873, their brother Ambrose wrote that he did not know where Eliza was. “I have had no correspondence with her since I moved into Allegany.” Apparently they had not kept in touch, and he was not aware of her death. At the time Orson was on his mission in Michigan in 1876, Eliza was dead. He did spend some time there with his Uncle Carr and cousins.

Eliza Eggleston Barron died of cancer November 4, 1869 in Groveland, Oakland, Michigan. Unfortunately her death record does not give her parents names and has her birthplace as New Jersey, not New York.

Death Record of Eliza Eggleston Barron
Death Record for Eliza Barron, the last entry showing on this image.

Eliza was buried in the Ortonville Cemetery in Oakland County, Michigan. There is a large Barron marker there.

After Eliza’s death, Carr married Sarah M. Beach Thurston March 2, 1870. She was born July 6, 1812 in Gates, Monroe, New York. They had no children.

David H. Johnson Water Wars

Introduction and Disclaimer

I have been intrigued by the story of Uncle David Johnson since my father told it to me years ago. I always found it rather sad.  I have done some digging in an attempt to get a better understanding of what really happened. Some families may be embarrassed by this kind of story and even refuse to discuss it. I find these kinds of things fascinating. They kind of bring out an inner detective in me.

With many such stories, there is the family version and a somewhat different version given through records. Some of the family version is what my father has remembered, being just a child when all these things happened.

I have poured though David’s numerous petitions, trying to make sense of them. They have the outward appearance of formal legal documents, but they are rambling, disjointed, repetitive, and confusing. The ones I have copies of are dated 1958-1960, so were written long after the incidents.

I searched legal records at the Utah State History office and found even more petitions among the court documents. Some of the newspaper articles I have read have obvious errors.

I of course, have my own biases and perspective based on my experiences. I will try to present what I have learned and what conclusions I have made, as well as what questions I still have.

The Family Story

The story my father told starts with David being a very successful farmer.  The land west of Ogden was alkaline. David developed a drainage system which leeched the alkali from the soil. He raised very good crops there, much better than his neighbors, which raised suspicion and allegations that he was taking more than his share of water.

The picture in my mind as I heard Dad’s story was of a wild west shootout with David in a ditch shooting to defend himself. David was shot in the head. The other guy was shot too – but he died. David was convicted of murder and served a life sentence in the Utah State Penitentiary.

Through research I realized that this was just the final chapter of David’s story, which had many more interesting details.

Water Wars Part One

David Johnson homesteaded some land in Ogden Valley as a young man. He was married at age 25 in 1900, so may have already owned this land for a while before his marriage. He had a dispute there with some of the neighbors over water rights. He outlined this dispute in a document titled “Attachment to Brief on Appeal” apparently drafted as part of an appeal to this first conviction.

David owned 160 acres located at the mouth of Wolf Creek Canyon in Eden. The officers of the Eden Irrigation Canal Company at that time were George Fuller, Ben Colvin and Virgil Stallings. David apparently had two shares and an allotted time to water his land, but one week when there had been rain, he diverted “surplus” water to a narrow strip of land, where it would run into the canal.

David was accused of stealing the canal water, was found guilty by a Justice of the Peace and fined $1200.00. David appealed this decision to the District Court.

The details in David’s petition are rather confusing, but the sense I get is that he felt that the Canal trustees had resources and power and pressured him to abandon his land. He was rather young at this time, and according to my father, he agreed to sell rather than face legal consequences. David sold this land in February 1904 to Anthon F. Anderson.

Water Wars Part Two

After selling his land and leaving Eden in 1905, David lived in Ogden City for several years. He first lived on Jefferson Avenue and then later in West Ogden on E. Ave. He bought a farm in Kanesville, in Weber County in 1914.

On June 2, 1929 David had another dispute over a bill for pasturage. This one was with a neighbor named Carl D. Johnson (no relation). David fired three shots at this other Johnson, one going through his hat. Carl Johnson hit David and knocked him down with a shovel. David was charged with assault with a deadly weapon and intent to commit murder.

Complaint of assault with intent to commit murder 1929

The case was transferred to the Court of Justice of the Peace Gladwell in Burch Creek (now South Ogden).

Salt Lake Tribune 6-13-1929

Salt Lake Tribune 10-16-1929

Water Wars Part Three

Adjacent to David’s land in Kanesville was land owned by John Kap. David claimed he had been threatened by Kap and Kap’s brother-in-law Chris Bowhuis, “If you don’t leave this country at once and give us your land ditch and water in this street, we are going to kill you and bury you like a rat.” Apparently they had dug a “grave” already for him.

David asserted that the State of Utah had denied all right held by David H. Johnson of land ditch and water as stood in this street. This had been acquired by Weber County on the construction of Utah Central Railroad in 1876, and when the road grade was built, it dug up the Salt Lake Valley hard pan rock, and stopped the flow of such under ground water coursing west to the lake. The State of Utah engineer, George M. Bason accorded this to David H. Johnson by State filing No. 9727 April 1925. This was proved up on and recorded January 1928. David Johnson used this for 11 years to May 19, 1936.

Map drawn by David

The Shootout

May 19, 1936, John Kap went to this ditch which was adjacent to Johnson’s land, armed with a 22 rifle and shovel. David was working on his land as Kap passed. David described the incident:

“As I Johnson took up a 22 rifle loaded with a long bullet and walked to my ditch in this street a legal appurtenance to my land, and saw Kap and Bowhuis dug grave and threw all into the gutter east of the pile of dirt, crawled to the pile of dirt to see where old Kap was; he was standing with his 22 rifle resting, pointed at me and fired a 22 bullet into my head, and then Kap walked to me living to stiff to raise up, when I shot old Kap in the center breast bone in self defense.”

Apparently Chris Bowhuis called the Sheriff’s office and Deputy Gaylord Taylor arrested David and took him to the Dee Hospital. According to his own account, David had a

“small wound in the frontal hair line about two and one half inches above the superorbital notch; the bullet of a short 22 calibre bullet was found two and half inches back of entrance. The X-ray picture is on file at the hospital. J. Howard Jenkins (Hospital Principle). The morning of May 20, 1836 the hospital informed the county Physican, doctor Feller, who examined this head and reported death is imminent unless the foreign body is removed at once from this man head. The hospital X-rayed his head and Doctor Feller parted to scalp to show the bullet, then shaved the bullet down to the part he removed it.”

John Kap was apparently also taken to the hospital. His wounds were described in court transcripts:

“The X-ray picture reveals he was shot from the front of his body with a long 22 bullet that struck his center breast bone; and entivraly turned to the right, and lodged in his left lung. Juryman you see the metal specks shattered all over his cut open breast, from the bullet striking his breast bone.”

John Kap died May 27, 1936. Apparently he was recovering from his wound, but later died of a lung hemorrhage. David was then charged with murder.

The Trial

The main witnesses at the trial were the family members of the victim and the police officer. I question whether David had very good legal counsel. David fell asleep at his preliminary hearing, and reportedly got angry at the Judge at times during the trial. The Judge also indicated that David had given varying details at times and he did not believe some of his claims.

Ogden Standard 6-2-1936

The Story From the Judge

The letter that Judge Leslie Wade wrote to the Parole Board gives his summary of the charges and the trial with additional details. He explained the dispute about the water and a statement David made to the Watermaster that he would kill Kap if he attempted to take water from the ditch. At 6 pm on May 19, Kap went to the ditch armed with a shotgun and a shovel, and with his brother-in-law Chris Bowhuis on lookout for any trouble.

David was there with a 22 rifle and a .38 caliber revolver. The judge described the incident as David firing first at Kap and then Kap rose up after falling to the ground and fired a shot at David which hit him in the head. Apparently there were more shots fired as Kap walked away.

The Judge also gave some additional background on David, which shows his opinion of him. He stated:

“Mr. Johnson has a rather notorious past history. He lives by himself in a very poorly furnished and very poorly built house. He has several chicken-coops and stables, and a person traveling by his place on the road wouldn’t know which was the house and which was the stable and which was a chicken-coop. I am informed that he has been married, but that his wife died many years ago, and that since about 1915 he has lived alone out in the neighborhood of where he lived at the time of the shooting.”

The Judge did give some indication that all sides were partly at fault in the ongoing water dispute. County Water Commissioners attempted to arbitrate the matter and there was previous court action. Interestingly the Judge stated that he had been involved as David’s attorney in a previous case and later withdrew, which raises some questions about his impartiality in this case.

The Judge also reviewed the earlier 1929 case, disputes in 1931 and 1932 with Kap and Bowhuis, and other petty court actions.

The Judge’s Assessment of David

“He seems to be a man that has brooded over his troubles so long that he is absolutely unable to see anything from the standpoint of the other person. He seems to be of a very sutbborn disposition, and has worked himself up to a stage where he feels that he is going to have his way or he is going to kill some one. As long as he is in this frame of mind, I felt that he is a very dangerous man to the public, or the community in which he lives.”

The Verdict

The jury was given options of finding David guilty of First Degree Murder, Second Degree Murder or involuntary manslaughter. David was convicted of Second Degree Murder. He was sentenced to the Utah State Penitentiary for life, a sentence which the judge described as “the extreme penalty which the law allowed me to give him, to wit, imprisonment for the remainder of his natural life.”

Petitions

David filed numerous and very detailed petitions. Petitions were directed to the District Court, the Utah State Supreme Court, The United States Supreme Court, Congress, and leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He even has some addressed “To Whom it may Concern” and “If you have a conscience, read this”. Some list David as petitioner vs. the State of Utah, but one has David H. Johnson, plaintiff vs. Warden Turner, the Prison Warden. (The one who said at the time of his death, that Dave was a model prisoner.)

David must have gained some knowledge of the judicial system,  some through experience, and likely through study in prison. He knew enough to create petitions, which contain some legal terminology, but are rather confusing and difficult to follow. He didn’t seem to understand appropriate procedures well.

One petition with handwritten cover page over mimeograph copy. In the top right hand corner the pages are fastened together with thread sewn though.

In his petitions, David cited the Constitution and other laws to try to establish that he had acted in self defense. Part of defense in these petitions involved the allegation that his property had been illegally taken from him. Apparently Chris Bowhuis was allowed to possess David’s “land ditch and water, 6 cows two horses 500 chickens and 5000 value of chattel property and imprison Johnson for life.”

Some of the petitions included hand drawn maps.

Appeals and Parole Hearings

David’s case went before the Parole board a number of times and was denied each time. He was denied Parole in February 1940.

Ogden Standard-Examiner 3-17-1946

A self-prepared clemency appeal was denied by the Pardon board March 17, 1946. Mrs. Kap, the widow of John Kap appeared before the board and said that she would fear for her safety if David was released.

Dec 23, 1951, David made another appeal to the parole board, still saying he was innocent.

It is interesting that the Prison Warden, John Turner, is quoted in this article after David’s death, saying that he was a model prisoner and caused no trouble there, yet the Judge had indicated in his letter to the Parole Board that if David’s attitude changed, parole might be appropriate.

Warden Turner also said that to his knowledge David had never been up for parole or termination. “He may have had desires to get out but apparently didn’t push the matter”. I wonder how well this Warden actually knew David. It does appear that David spent the remainder of his life rather obsessed with trying to get out of prison.

The End of David’s Life and Struggle

David did spend the remainder of his life in prison. He actually was taken to Salt Lake General Hospital and died there, rather than in the prison itself.

Ogden Standard-Examiner Jan 25, 1961

My Impressions

Are we seeing a pattern here? A single incident might lead one to believe that David had indeed been ganged up on, provoked and taken advantage of. But there seem to be repeated conflicts with neighbors which escalated to the point of violence. David clearly had trouble getting along with neighbors and had a hot temper.

I do believe that David felt that he was being threatened and needed to defend himself and his property. I think he truly felt he was the one being attacked and acted in self-defense.

In the first incident in Eden, David was very young and up against the established leaders of the community. In the last incident, the “victim” Kap and neighbor Bouwhuis were relatives and had other family members taking their side. David’s property was very literally surrounded by the land of these two.

But I have to wonder if some of this feeling like a victim of conspiracies was a bit of paranoia. The mention from the Prison Warden about David being sent to the State Mental Hospital and the institution in American Fork, may suggest that some thought that he suffered from some impairment or mental illness. Also there was mention of a potential insanity defense to the murder charge.

Having some experience with traumatic brain injuries, it would make some sense to me that after the last incident where David was shot in the head, he may have had some impairment because of that. That might account for some things, like not being able to communicate coherently his account and falling asleep in court during his preliminary hearing. Though feelings of persecution and violent responses were evident much earlier.

I still feel that Uncle David’s life was rather sad.

Lola Eggleston Gorder Allen

Lola Eggleston Gorder Allen – her story in her own words.

I was born December 15, 1917 to Joseph Smith and Talitha Cuma Cheney Eggleston, in Grovant, Wyoming. My family was Alice, Wesley, Me, Orland, Laura, Melvin, Dale, and DeLoss.

Birth Notice in the Jackson paper – Lola was the baby girl born December 15, 1917

Mama died when she was 49. She had an operation to remove some scar tissue. On Sunday she was sitting up in bed crocheting and on Tuesday we got the word she had died. Papa married Stella, who was Mama’s niece. Papa died at the age of 83.

Move to Utah

When I was two years old we moved to Utah by train. I was running in the isles of the train and a man thought I was such a pretty little girl he gave me a silver dollar. Mom bought me a pair of shoes with it.

When it was time to go to school I didn’t start because I wan’t 6 in time so I had to wait a year. My first grade teacher was a fat woman. I didn’t like her. She taught for the first three years. On the fourth of July I had a chance to fish in the fishpond. She was the one to give the prizes. She had a black heavy straw hat she said was for the first pretty little girl that came by. I hated it. I never wore it. It was an old woman’s hat with thick rims and was flat on the top. I wanted a purse like the other kids were getting. It was so ugly. She brought her daughter to school the day it started. She put her in the second grade and said, “keep her there.” She later skipped a year so she was two years ahead of me and younger than me.

I like to do the ironing when I was little and I had to do the dishes a lot. The iron was a coal stove iron. You had to have a real hot fire to heat the iron. You’d have to use two of them so you could trade off. This was before we had electricity.

School was 2 1/2 miles from where we lived. We had to walk to catch a bus to go to high school. In the winter it was so cold and the snow so deep. When I was about 16 and going in the 10th grade, I moved to Ogden to work for my room and board and go to school. The first place I lived was with friends, Ray and Olive Rudd.

Lola as a Senior in High School

I went to the Junior Prom with a boy that played in an orchestra they made up themselves. I went to the girls dance and we had to ask the boy. I went with the boy that took me to the Cadet hop at his school. I went to all the school dances with guys that were older. I loved to dance. When I graduated, Wesley gave me my class ring and Alice gave me a yearbook.

I was staying in Ogden with George and Kathrin Stouckland and Phil chased with Kathrin’s brother. That’s how I met Phil. I used to tend Selma’s baby and didn’t know she was Phil’s sister.

Alice, Joe, Melvin, Stella and Lola

Marriage to Phil Gorder

Phil and I got married in Norman and Nettie’s house. We didn’t have a honeymoon. We first lived at the old Nelson house. Winters were cold; the tea bottle would freeze and the linoleum would curl. I used to put the ashes in a board box and just put the box on a platform by the stove. We came home from the store one day and the hot ashes in the box had burned through the floor but the house didn’t catch fire. I never did figure out why it didn’t. We lived there for two years while Phil built us a new home. We stayed with the folks for a while. I had a miscarriage first, then I had Gail. I raised chickens and sold the eggs for extra money.

Being a Mother

The night Gail was born: I woke up – didn’t have any pain but was uncomfortable. Phil called his mother. We sat there talking and finally decided to go to the hospital. My water broke going down the stairs. I sat on the toilet while Phil went for the car. I still wasn’t having pains. Mother said I’d better get started. So we left. The pain started on the way really pressing going down the canyon. We made it to the hospital in a little over ten minutes. I told Phil to go get a cart. He came back and said the wanted me to walk in and I said I couldn’t move. So he went and got one. When I got to the delivery room and they were trying to undress me and I’d have a pain and couldn’t move. He was born 2:10 AM. That was before the canyon was changed. It had a horseshoe bend that was a really sharp turn. I never had long or hard labor with any of my kids.

Gary was the only one that would “take the breast.” Gail and Dee wouldn’t, they’d just cry. So, with Cuma I just said “get a damn bottle, I don’t want to fight anymore.”

My kids all turned out pretty good. I’m proud of all of them.

Family Reunion Photo. Back row Joe, Stella, Alice, Lola Front row Orland, Doc, Wesley, Melvin

Farm Life

Once we decided to fatten and eat an orphaned lamb. We bottle-fed it, and soon it became a pet. When it came time to butcher it, nobody would to it. So we ate beef.

In about 1998, Gail was in the hospital for high blood pressure. Ivan Rick was visiting and told of when he and some friends stole some of my chickens. He said there were so tough he couldn’t bite into the meat.

We had some good friends, Dave and Bell Clawson. We did everything together. One day when we were riding around, we went to the Stoddard slough and saw this old boat and decided to take a ride. We went up the stream and back and then Dave and I got out of the boat. When Phil and Bell were getting out, the boat tipped over. They went down in all the weeds and dirty slough. Bell had just gotten her a hair permanent and she came out of all the mud and said “there’s $10 gone to hell!” Phil had on a pair of white wool pants that shrunk to where he couldn’t wear them anymore. We all laughed. We still do when we think of it.

When Phil joined the church our troubles started. He didn’t like me to do what I liked to do and seemed to get upset if I got any attention. He started drinking and staying away from home. One time he was gone for over a week. I didn’t know where he was and couldn’t take care of the cows so I sold them. He never did come home so I filed for divorce. He didn’t talk to me after that.

Marriage to Vern Allen

I married Vern Allen on May 24, 1969. We went to Las Vegas and lived there for 16 years. He got sick with cancer so we moved back to Ogden to live until he died on November 23, 1983. I did Temple work doing sealings, then I did extraction work. I enjoyed it. That lasted for several years.

Dee’s Memories

Lola ended her story here, but her son Dee wrote some memories of her. He said:

I don’t know much about Mom’s growing up years. She never said a lot that I remember, past the usual “why, when I was little, we had to walk two miles to catch the bus, the snow so deep we walked over the fence tops” when any any of us kids complained about having to stand in the cold while waiting for the school bus. I suspect that in her case, it was probably very near the truth.

I don’t believe Mom’s growing up years, for the most part, held many pleasant memories for her. In my untrained view, Mom was punished a lot by her father and she was very afraid of him. Her Dad, Grandpa Eggleston, was held in check to some degree by Mom’s mother before she died. Mom felt singled out by her Dad. She tells of one time he “beat me with a singletree.” For all that, she loved him and took some pride in how well he maintained his farm and how well he cared for his cows and other animals.

Mom always seemed to me to be unhappy. By the time I was old enough to notice, Mom and Dad were having trouble, so maybe that was part of the reason.

Mom and Dad divorced, then Mom married Vern Allen. Vern was also from Morgan, an old neighbor in fact. He was a reformed alcoholic himself, but Mom seemed to like him and was happy during her time with him.

While Dad and us boys were out doing farm and animal stuff, Mom worked at maintaining a neat and comfortable home for us. She baked bread and I remember on occasion she made her own lye soap. In addition to maintaining the house, Mom was mostly in charge of caring for two chicken coops full of laying hens.

My Memories

Lola’s Obituary mentioned that she “enjoyed quilting and hand needle work, creating countless beautiful works of art over her lifetime. All are treasures to those fortunate enough to own one. I am one who was fortunate to own one – a tablecloth she gave me for a wedding gift.

Photo of the last four siblings – Alice, Mel, Lola and Doc

In 2001 we had an Eggleston Family Reunion. We had not had one for many, many years. This was the last time Lola was with many family members.

Doc, Alice and Lola at the 2001 Family Reunion

Lola’s Death

I remember that Lola fell and broke her hip some months before she died. I visited her in the Care Center. She passed away on February 8, 2003. She was buried in the Milton Cemetery.

’

Note: Lola wrote her story, which her son Dee and wife Karen included in a Gorder Family History book.

Stella May Cheney Robinson Eggleston

Stella May Cheney Robinson Eggleston

Stella’s Life in Her Own Words

I, Stella May Cheney, was born 13 Nov. 1905 at Wilson, Teton Co., Wyoming. (This was Uinta Co., then Lincoln and now Teton County.)

I was born in a log cabin on Fish Creek, near Uncle “Nick” (E. N.) Wilson’s home. I knew him and his son, George, was my childhood play mate.

My father was Selar Sylvester Cheney, a son of Selar Cheney who was a son of Elam, whose Father, Aaron Cheney, joined the L.D.S. [Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints] Church in New York in 1831.

My mother was Edith Vivian Nethercott; she was born 28 April 1885 in Corning, Tehema Co., California. Her father was Alfred Nethercott, born 20 March 1856 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Alfred Nethercott’s father, Alfred Alexander Nethercott, his mother Charlotte Pearce and his grandparents, James Nethercott and Rachel James, were from England. They lived in Utah and Calif., and later Alfred Alexander, his wife, Charlotte and Alfred Nethercott, his wife, Ida Ann Thompson and children went to Wyoming about 1900.

My mother’s mother was Ida Ann Thompson – born at Trenton, Grundy Co., Missouri. The family went to California when my grandmother was a child. John Alexander Campbell Thompson and his wife, Amanda Caroline Williams – parents of Ida Ann Thompson.

Continue reading

Annie Christine Johnson Eggleston

Annie Christine Johnson Eggleston

Annie Christine Johnson Eggleston

Christine’s Early Life

Annie Christine Johnson Eggleston was born November 7, 1864 in Salt Lake City, a daughter of Peter Johnson and Ane Maria Madsen. Her parents had immigrated from Denmark separately just a few years earlier. They married September 27, 1862 in Salt Lake City. Annie Christine was their second child and was born before they moved to Eden. She was known as Christine, probably because her mother was Ane Marie and her older sister Annie Marie. She grew up in Eden on the family farm. Her father died in 1878 when she was 14 years old. She probably helped to care for her seven younger siblings.

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Orson Hyde Eggleston

Orson Hyde Eggleston

Early Life of Orson Hyde Eggleston

Orson Hyde Eggleston was born October 3, 1841 in Niles, Cayuga Co. New York. He was born four months after his parents, Samuel and Lurania Powers Burgess Eggleston, were baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He was named after Orson Hyde, whom his parents had apparently met in 1832 when he came to the area as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

In July 1842, when Orson was less than a year old, his father Samuel moved the family to Nauvoo, Illinois. Orson would have spent his early childhood in the growing town of Nauvoo. In early 1846, the Saints were driven from Nauvoo and the Eggleston family left in the spring. They went to Winter Quarters where another son, Samuel was born and died in August 1847.

Orson indicated in a handwritten biography that “my father not having means to come west with the Pioneers moved back across the Missouri River to Iowa, lived for a time at Traders Point, then went to Council Bluffs and lived for a time, then went 7 miles north to Crescent City.” The family remained in this area until 1862. Orson would have received his schooling there. He apparently learned the printers trade in Pottawattamie County, along with his brother Reuben. The 1860 Census listed Orson H., age 18, as printer. Orson was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints December 30, 1860 at the age of 19. He indicated that in the winter of 1860-61 his parents renewed their covenants by baptism and he was also baptized at that time. He was also ordained an Elder that winter, as was his brother Reuben.

Migration to Utah

In the summer of 1861, Orson came to Utah with his brother Reuben and his family in the David H. Cannon Company. The rest of the family remained in Council Bluffs until 1862. Orson mentioned in a brief biography that “in the spring of 1862 I was called to go to the frontier as a teamster and in 1863 I was called and went the second time, went to the little town of Wyoming the outfitting point that season assisted Joe N. Young in forwarding the Saints and on the return trip was appointed commissary of the train.”

By this time, Church leaders in Utah had discontinued the handcart companies as an inexpensive means to transport the large numbers of Saints immigrating from Europe. There was then a good supply of wagons and teams in the Salt Lake Valley and the railroad had moved further west, making it possible for teamsters to leave Salt Lake in the early spring, travel to the outfitting point where the railroad ended and bring the Saints to the Salt Lake Valley before winter set in. Orson being a young, single and likely healthy man, was called to assist with this work. It appears that Orson returned to Utah with his family in the summer of 1862 and returned with them in the James Wareham Company. The Deseret News of September 16, 1862 included a Report on the immigration.

“The day was warm in G. S. L. City. Elder Amasa M. Lyman & Charles C. Rich & Co. arrived in Salt Lake City. Capt. James Wareham’s Independent Co. members—Samuel, Lurania, Orson H. & Mary E. Eggleston; Edwin, Eliza R. Charlotte & John F. Eggleston”.

Records indicate that Orson made a third trip in 1864 with the John R. Murdock Company.

Life in Ogden, Utah

Orson and his family settled in Ogden, Utah. Weber County land records show that Orson owned one acre of land, Lot six of Block 27 Plat A, Ogden City. Orson and Reuben were ordained Seventies in the 53rd Quorum the winter after they arrived in Ogden.

Orson apparently became an involved member of the community. The Deseret News of July 4, 1863 included a detailed account of the festivities in Ogden for the holiday. The day began with a flag ceremony at dawn, followed by the band parading through town. Then a breakfast was served at the home of Richard Ballantyne at 7 a.m. A large parade followed at 9:00. The 10th of 16 entries in this parade was described as “12 young men under the direction of Mr. Orson Eggleston.” Following the parade there were speeches and music.

On November 18, 1865 Orson was elected Captain in the Nauvoo Legion in the Weber Military District, Company C Infantry, 2nd Battalion, 1st Regiment 1st Brigade. He received a commission from Gov. Charles Durkee. The Nauvoo Legion was the local Militia. It was named after the Militia of Nauvoo headed by Joseph Smith. Because the Saints were isolated in Utah without any military to defend them, in fact the U.S. military being in the position of enemy for some time, the Nauvoo Legion was established to provide protection and defense. A Deseret News article of August 13, 1869 included a report from Ogden including an account of the re-organization of the Weber County Militia, first Regiment, first Brigade. Listed as a Captain was Orson Eggleston.

In 1868 T. B. H. Stenhouse began publishing a newspaper in Ogden and Orson and his brother Reuben were hired as compositors. This paper only lasted until October 1869, but by December 1869, a number of enterprising townspeople had organized the Ogden Junction Publishing Co. The first semi-weekly Ogden Junction was published January 1, 1870. Orson and Reuben Eggleston were among the first compositors employed on the paper. The editor of this paper was Franklin D. Richards and Charles W. Penrose was associate editor.

First Marriage to Constant Ann Stephens

On December 4, 1864 Orson married Constant Ann Stephens, the daughter of John Stephens and Elizabeth Briggs. The family settled in Weber County where her father built the first reservoir in 1856. At the time of their marriage Orson was 24 and Constant was almost 16. They were the parents of 11 children.

Mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Orson served a mission for the Church to Michigan in 1876-77, leaving his wife home with five children. Orson kept a journal of this mission, which is currently in the Archives of the History Department of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

He was called on the mission October 7, 1876 at General Conference. It was common for mission calls to be made from the pulpit at General Conference. He was one of 36 missionaries called on Missions to the United States at that Conference. Orson stated in his journal, “I was called by the General Conference to go on a mission to the United States.” Though the mission was to the United States, he served mainly in Michigan. Perhaps he had some choice in that. He had many relatives in Michigan with whom he was able to visit, teach and obtain genealogical information.

Orson was blessed and set apart for this mission by Elder Orson Pratt October 21, 1876 in the Historians office in Salt Lake City. He did not have a great deal of time to prepare for this mission. He left Ogden November 15, 1876 with an Elder Porter and headed toward Chicago, stopping first in Council Bluffs. Orson visited with his brother Edwin who was living there. He also visited “A host of friends all of whom seemed glad to see me.” Having grown up mostly in the Council Bluffs area, Orson would have had many friends and acquaintances still there.

After leaving Council Bluffs they stopped at Missouri Valley 24 miles north of Council Bluffs where they spent the night with some of his wife Constant’s cousins. They were members of the Church and he indicated they “had a good time taught them the Gospel and encouraged them in the latter-day work which they had already embraced.” From there they continued to Iowa, stopping at Marshall and then traveling north to Parkersburg, where Orson visited his Uncle Ambrose Eggleston. Ambrose was a Baptist minister, so they probably had some interesting conversations regarding religion.

Orson did not have much success as far as convert baptisms, however he did visit family members and gathered a great deal of genealogical information. He sent this information home in letters to his father.

July 3rd the Ogden Junction reported:

“Elder O. H. Eggleston returned on Sunday evening from a mission to the Western States, having left Ogden on the 15th of November last. He labored principally in Michigan and Iowa, and reports the people in some sections as being inclined towards anything rather than religion– mines being the principal item of interest. He had fair success, however. The latter part of his labors were at Council Bluffs Iowa; where he worked in conjunction with Elder James A. Little of Toquerville. Elder Eggleston has not had good health during the past two months.”

Another report was published in the Deseret News 10 November 1877:

“Missionary—Elder O. H. Eggleston, of Ogden, called upon us to-day. He recently returned from a mission to the State of Michigan, where he was busily and successfully engaged in the ministry about eight months. Since his return, he has suffered severely from the effects of a fall from a building in Ogden, on which he commenced work soon after his arrival home.”

Second Marriage to Mariett Orinda Farley

On July 11, 1879 Orson married a second wife, Mariett Orinda Farley, the daughter of Winthrop Farley and Angeline Calkin. Mariett was born August 17, 1855 after her family had migrated to Utah. At the time of this marriage, Orson was 37, Constant was 30 and Mariett was 24. Orson and Mariett had nine children.

Orson with Mariett and their children

Third Marriage to Annie Christine Johnson

February 10, 1881 Orson married a third wife, Annie Christine Johnson, the 17 year old daughter of Danish immigrants, Peter and Anna Maria Madsen Johnson who lived near his home in Eden. Annie Christine was born November 7, 1864 in Salt Lake City. Orson and Annie Christine had five children.

Move to Eden, Utah

In the fall of 1877, Orson moved to Eden in Ogden Valley. Orson’s handwritten biography stated “while living in Eden I married Mariett O. Farley and Anna Christine Johnson as plural wives.”

Upon moving to Eden, Orson purchased the home of Richard Ballantyne, who had been the first Presiding Elder in Eden. Elder Ballantyne moved to Ogden at that time. This house still stands in Eden across the street from the Eden Park. Though remodeled over the years, it was reported to still have a pioneer root cellar in 1977.

Home of Orson Hyde Eggleston

Orson’s home in Eden.

Eden was one of three small towns in Ogden Valley. This rather isolated valley was used as a pioneer herding ground in the 1850’s. A few cabins were built by the herders, but the first permanent settlers didn’t arrive until 1859. Travel into the Valley was very difficult until a road was built through Ogden Canyon. The valley had previously been a camping area for the Shoshone Indians and they continued to camp there in the early years.

The L.D.S. residents of Eden were originally a branch under the direction of Captain Jefferson Hunt of Huntsville. They were known as the North Fork District of the Hunstville Ward of the Weber Stake. Richard Ballantyne was the first Branch President from 1865-1874. Josiah Marsh Ferrin was the second Branch President from 1874-1877 with Henry Holmes and Peter Johnson as counselors. The Eden Ward was formed June 10, 1877, around the time that Orson moved there. Josiah Ferrin was first Bishop, with Peter Johnson and Enoch Burns as Counselors. Orson served as Sunday School Superintendent after moving to Eden. He was also listed as YMMIA Superintendent. Orson was ordained a High Priest March 3, 1878 by Bishop Josiah Ferrin and was called as second counselor in the Bishopric at that time, replacing Enoch Burns who had moved to southeastern Utah. Orson served in this Bishopric with first counselor Peter Johnson, whose daughter Annie Christine he later married. In January 1879, after the death of Peter Johnson, Orson was made first counselor. After this Bishopric was released November 1, 1883, Orson was made Ward Clerk. He served in that position for several years.

The Eden Ward records contain many interesting comments made by Orson, which were quoted in “History of the Eden Ward”. March 8, 1879 he reported: “We have had a first-class day school the past winter and it is yet in session, being taught by Brother Edward H. Anderson of Huntsville.”

In an entry dated January 6, 1881, as Counselor, Orson exhorted all to pay their tithing. He also requested Sunday store trading be discontinued and hoped the brethren from the north end of the valley would take note of this so Brother John Farrell and his family would be able to attend their meetings, and he hoped the ward teachers would notify their people to that effect. Another note dated March 8, 1879 stated:

“Our Sunday meetings have been unusually interesting and well attended the past winter. Our YMMIA meetings have been very interesting, our schoolhouse being filled every evening we hold meetings. There has been an inter-missionary labor kept up between this place and Huntsville by our young men of the two societies and a marked improvement is manifest.”

A Ward Teaching report dated October 29, 1884 indicated that Elder Orson Eggleston said he had heard some complain the spirit of infidelity was growing among some of the young people and said he was sorry to hear it. As conclusion to their book “History of the Eden Ward”, Ren and Melba Colvin quoted Orson as saying on March 8, 1879:

“We are not blessed here as the people are in many places with two or three grades of society; here we are all brethren and sisters, and have but one class of society and that is first class.”

Orson seems to have enjoyed living in Eden. In addition to church service, he was the postmaster for several years.

Orson’s wife Constance was made first Counselor in the Relief Society June 7, 1878. Orson, as Counselor in the Bishopric conducted the meeting when this took place. Constance served in this position until June 17, 1886 when she moved to Star Valley. Mariett Eggleston was called as treasurer of the Primary June 24, 1881.

Deaths and a New Cemetery

Orson lost two children, Samuel Lee and John Stephens in October 1878 during a Diphtheria epidemic. They were probably buried in the Ogden City Cemetery. Orson had bought a plot there, where there are two infants in unmarked graves. His parents Samuel and Lurania were also buried in this plot.

The people of Eden, feeling the need of a Cemetery there, assembled a committee in 1882 to pursue acquiring some property from Orson Eggleston for a Cemetery. This was part of his farm, sitting on a hill which now overlooks the north arm of the Pineview Reservoir. It is now known as the Eden Meadow View Cemetery.

A Ward Teachers report of September 30, 1882 stated:

“Bishop John Farrell stated that he wished to say something in regards to the burying ground for our dead, as the people were not satisfied with it at present. He wished Brother Eggleston to make a statement in regard to the land which has been purchased for that purpose located in his field. He (brother Eggleston) stated that he let the people have the land with the understanding that they pay him $25.00 for the same, which as yet he had never been paid. It was decided that the teachers, in visiting the people, inquire of them if they were willing to buy the land from brother Eggleston and have it fenced in and deed to the people, that they may be sure of a place to bury their dead, and report at the next priesthood meeting what the people are willing to do in regards to this matter.”

November 30, 1882 the committee appointed to see to the grave yard reported their success in purchasing the land for the same and what it would cost to fence it in by itself.” Orson and his family moved to Star Valley shortly after this was all settled, so the only member of his family buried there was his son Joseph who returned to Eden to live. Orson’s father-in-law, Peter Johnson and family were buried there.

Eden Meadow View Cemetery

Eden Meadow View Cemetery with view of Pineview Reservoir

 

Journey to Star Valley, Wyoming

After the Edmunds anti-Polygamy Act was passed in 1882, life became more difficult for families practicing polygamy. No specific incidents have been reported regarding Orson when he lived in Eden, but he may have felt less safe after this time. The government of Wyoming, in attempting to encourage settlers to that territory, did not seem as concerned about the practice of polygamy. They appeared to see Mormon settlers as hard working, stable citizens. Theywere not very cooperative with authorities attempting to enforce polygamy laws. These factors probably influenced Orson to move his family to Star Valley, Wyoming.

In November 1885, Orson went with J. C. Stephens to Star Valley. This was probably his wife Constant’s brother John Cornelius Stephens, as Orson also referred to him as Corniel. Orson left two of his wives with new babies and the other wife expecting and was separated from them for over six months. Orson kept a journal during this time which provides some interesting insights into this experience. It took a week to travel to Star Valley. They stopped in Montpelier to visit Jeff Stephens, a relative of his wife Constant. Jeff accompanied them into the valley. On this journey they got stuck in mud and were rescued by three men who came along. Orson related that they later administered to a sick horse, which did recover. They arrived in the valley November 10, 1885.

In his journal, Orson referred to their destination as the Salt River Valley. Star Valley actually consists of two small valleys, united by a narrow pass. Along the side of the valley is the Salt River mountain range. The Salt River, which is one of the Snake River’s largest tributaries, runs from the southeast end of the valley northward through both valleys. In the summer of 1880, Moses Thatcher, who had been sent by Brigham Young to find areas for settlement of Latter-day Saints in Wyoming, named the valley “Star Valley”.

Upon arriving in the Valley, Orson and his companions visited Bro. Charles C. Cazier, who had been made the Presiding Elder of the few Saints in the valley. When a Ward was organized in Afton in 1887, Brother Cazier was the first Bishop. Orson spent the winter of 1885-86 living in a tent. He was involved in surveying the town of Afton and making plans for a meetinghouse, as well as staking out a land claim for himself. Charles Cazier had been instructed to survey a townsite containing 30 blocks, each of 10 acres. This survey was done using a common carpenter’s square and rope. The townsite was later professionally re-surveyed, finding the original survey off only a few feet.

Life in Afton, Wyoming

Orson obtained a Homestead Land Grant from the Federal Government. It was issued April 29, 1893. It consisted of three pieces of land totaling 160 acres. One was the Southeast quarter of the southeast quarter of Section 15 in Township 32 North Range 119 West North of the 6th Principal Meridian in the State of Wyoming, County of Lincoln. The second was the East half of the Northeast quarter of Section 22 in Township 32 North Range 119 West North of 6th Principal Meridian in Lincoln County, Wyoming. The third for the northeast quarter of the southeast quarter of section 22 in Township 32 North Range 119 West North of 6th Principal meridian Lincoln County.

An early Map of the town of Afton in A History of Star Valley, showed that Orson lived on Sixth Avenue, east of Adams Street.

Postcard with a view of early Afton, Wyoming

Emil Vaterlaus started a newspaper in Afton in 1901 called The Star Valley Pioneer. In 1902 The Pioneer was published on Fridays and publishers were Emil Vaterlaus and his brother Conrad. December 12, 1902 Conrad S. Vaterlaus took over as editor and publisher. The name of the paper was changed to The Star Valley Independent on September 9, 1903. Conrad Vaterlaus continued as editor until sometime around September 1907. Henry H. Billings was listed as editor in a paper dated September 13, 1907. He operated the paper with O. H. Eggleston as typesetter until 1913. Apparently the Vaterlaus brothers recruited Orson to work with them on this paper because of his previous experience in the business.

This photograph shows the building with a sign “The Independent” and two men standing in front. On back of the photograph they are identified as Conrad Vaterlaus editor and Orson Eggleston, Compositor. Typesetting was still done by hand on this paper, which would have been a very tedious job. With Orson’s previous experience however, he was probably very proficient at it.

The Afton Ward was organized in 1887 with Charles Cazier as first Bishop. Orson served as Sunday School Superintendent and clerk of the High Priests Quorum. His wife Anne Christine served as the Secretary of the Relief Society. The Star Valley Stake was organized in August 1892. Orson served as a member of the High Council. A Tabernacle was begun in 1904 and dedicated August 15, 1909. This was a rather impressive structure built of sandstone, of middle English design with a large tower 140 feet tall. Almost everyone in the valley assisted in some way in the building of this Tabernacle, so most likely Orson and his family contributed financially, with labor on the actual building or in fund raising projects.

Afton Tabernacle of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Orson practiced dentistry in Afton and his first wife Constant assisted the sick and delivered about 500 babies in the valley. Apparently by the early 1900’s electricity had come to Afton as shown by Orson’s 1911 electric bill.

Life in Polygamy

Orson did practice polygamy freely in Afton. Eventually he had separate houses for his wives. The 1900 Census of Afton listed the family in three households. Orson was head of one household, 58 years old with wife Merry E. [Mariett] age 44 and children. Annie C. Johnson was the head of the next household at age 35 with three children. The next household was Constant Eggleston as head age 51, with two adult and one teenage son.

There was a place in Star Valley called Signal Hill which served as a lookout. It was visible from all parts of the valley and the entire valley could be seen from it. From there smoke from a signal fire warned settlers of approaching strangers and especially federal authorities looking for polygamists. This would have given them time to hide. Another signal was given if the approaching people turned out to be harmless and it was again safe.

Orson was arrested at least one time for practicing polygamy, though he was not convicted. Records for the Fourth District Court, at Ogden July 30, 1892, indicated that the cases of several men charged with polygamy, adultery, and u.c., including Orson Eggleston, were dismissed . U.S. Marshall Eli H. Parsons, made the motion to dismiss because it was impossible to secure evidence sufficient to justify a conviction. This would have been during the time he lived in Afton.

Orson’s first wife Constance eventually divorced him and remarried. Third wife Christine died before Orson, so at his death he had only one wife, Mariett. Orson died February 9, 1917 in Afton, Wyoming and was buried in the Afton Cemetery.

Notes and Sources:

This biography was adapted from the chapter on Orson and his family in my book The Joseph Eggleston Family: Seven Generations from Joseph (d.1767) of Stonington, Connecticut to Joseph (1885-1965) of Utah and Wyoming (Including Maternal Lines: Hill, Burgess, Titus, Sammis & Johnson) and from histories submitted to Daughters of the Utah Pioneers. Sources listed in my book include:

History of Orson Hyde Eggleston by Virgie Eggleston Stoffers (Daughters of Utah Pioneers)

“A Short Autobiography of Samuel Eggleston” from records of Laura Eggleston Cutler (Daughters of Utah Pioneers)

Milton R. Hunter, Beneath Ben Lomond’s Peak, A History of Weber County 1824-1900, Daughters of Utah Pioneers, Salt Lake City, Publishers Press, 1966.

Hilda Faulkner Brown, The Michigan Mormons: Their History from 1831-1952 and a Little Beyond, Provo, Utah: H. F. Brown c 1985. (977.4 K2b)

Melba and Ren Colvin, History of the Eden Ward, Ogden Stake Utah 1877-1977 (1977)

Laverna Burnett Newey, Remember My Valleey, A History of Ogden Canyon, Huntsville, Liberty and Eden, Utah from 1825-1976 (Salt Lake City, Utah: Hawkes Publishing, Inc., 1977)

Forrest Weber Kennington & Kathaleen Kennington Hamblin, A History of Star Valley, Formerly Salt River Valley 1800-1900 (Salt Lake City, Utah:Valley Graphics, 1989)

Lee R. Call, Star Valley and Its Communities, Afton Wyoming, Star Valley Independent, 1970 (978,782 H2s, FHL film 1059486 item 8)

Thaya Eggleston Gilmore, Eggleston, Call, Baxter Family History Book, December 2002

Esshom, Frank, Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah: comprising photographs, genealogies, biographies (Salt Lake City, UT: Utah Pioneers Book, 1913) (979.2 D3) p. 550, 856.

Tripp, Bartlett, 1839-1911, Journal 1861 David H. Canon Company (Church Emigration Book Vol. 3) Church History Department Archives, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Eden Ward Records (FHL film 0025921)

Biography of Orson Hyde Eggleston written for the Genealogical Society of Utah, p. 130-133. Photocopy in possession of the author.

Eggleston, Orson Hyde 1841–Reminiscences and Diary, 1876 Nov-1877 Jan., Church History Department Archives, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, photocopy in possession of the author. listed in Davis Bitton, Guide to Mormon Diaries and Autobiographies, Provo, Utah: BYU Press c. 1977, p. 98.

 

Mariett Orinda Farley Eggleston

Mariett Orinda Farley Eggleston

Mariett Orinda Farley Eggleston

I knew very little about Mariett Farley, Orson Hyde Eggleston’s second wife, until I met Donna. She shared with me some photos and also a biography of Mariett’s daughter Vedia, and a biography written about Veda by her daughter Fern. From these and a little more digging, I have learned a little more about Mariett.

Early Life of Mariett Orinda Farley Eggleston

Mariett Orinda Farley was born August 17, 1855 in Ogden, Weber Utah, a daughter of Winthrop Farley and Angeline Caulkin. She was listed as Maryetta age 14 in the 1870 Census of Ogden in the home of her father Winthrop Farley, who was a blacksmith. The Farley family migrated to Utah in 1850.

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Lurania Powers Burgess Eggleston

Early Life of Lurania Powers Burgess Eggleston

Lurania Powers Burgess, daughter of Mary (Polly) Titus and Harvey Burgess was born August 15, 1808 in Sempronius, Cayuga County, New York. Her father Harvey’s family can be traced back to Thomas Burges, an early resident of Plymouth, Massachusetts and the Hopkins family of the Mayflower. Her Mother Mary’s parents came from Long Island where their ancestors were early colonial residents.

The Burgess and Titus familles migrated from Stillwater, Saratoga, County New York to Sempronius, Cayuga County about the same time and quite possibly together. A History of Cayuga county mentions the Burgess family coming in 1796, and being one of the first families to settle Sempronius. Mary’s father Jonas Titus died in 1795 in Stillwater, and his widow and children probably came shortly after that. Both of these families were members of the Baptist church in Stillwater and are listed as original members of the First Baptist Church of Sempronius. The two families were neighbors in Sempronius and probably were very close as Harvey and Mary grew up together in both Stillwater and Sempronius. Harvey Burgess and Mary (Polly) Titus were married in Sempronius around 1802. Lurania was the third of their eleven children.

Skaneateles Lake

Sempronius, Cayuga County is in the finger lakes area of northern New York. It consists of hilly country nestled in between Oswaco and Skaneateles Lakes. The area was largely settled after the Revolutionary War. It was part of what was known as the Military Tract, which consisted of land given by the government to Veterans of the Revolutionary War, though the majority of Veterans given land never lived there. The Burgess and Titus families came as pioneers to this new settlement.

Lurania grew up in this small new frontier town where her extended family made up a large portion of the initial population. Her grandfather Seth Burgess had the first tavern in the area, which probably served as a community as well as family gathering place during Lurania’s early childhood. The first school was in a log building on the Titus farm, belonging to one of Lurania’s uncles. Later a school was built on her cousin Byron Burgess’ land. Lurania may have attended this school in her early years, but most likely attended a newer school built in 1815 at Sayles Corners near her home. The first Town Officers of Sempronius included Lurania’s grandfather and uncle.

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