Naomi Roxanna LeBaron


Naomi Roxanna LeBaron fifth generation from the immigrant Doctor Francis LeBaron, was born in Leroy, Genesee, New York on the 7th of October 1815/16.  She was the daughter of David LeBaron and Azuba King.  She married James Sawyer Holman on March 24, 1833.  She was the mother of twelve children.  Seven of them were born as they followed the Mormon people from Pennsylvania to Nauvoo, Illinois.  The last five were born in Utah as they moved from one county to another helping to colonize this new land.

When the Saint began the trek across the plains, her husband was called to drive the sheep for the first company of pioneers.  This left her to care for the family as best she could.  There were six children, little Zilpha having died when she was 8 months old.  Her only help with the teams and wagon was young James Alonzo, age 12.  He was so small that he had to stand on the wagon tongue to harness the horses.  The father traveled with the sheep reaching the Utah valley in September 1847.

Early the next spring he started back to find his family.  Together they arrived in the Salt Lake Valley in September 1848.  They spent the winter in the Old Fort.  In the spring of 1849 they moved to a settlement north of Salt Lake called Sessions, Davis County.  This is now called Bountiful, Utah.  Here they built a home and stayed for two winters.  The crickets came and laid waste to their fields.  Then the gulls came to save what crop was left.  Here in Sessions, their eighth child Emma Jane was born.

In 1851, they were called to move to Santaquin.  Here they started another home, the first to be built in that town.  The Indians became so troublesome that they were forced to move to Payson in 1853 for protection.  In 1855 they were able to move back to Santaquin.  Three more children were born here, all of them died as babies.  Privations and hardships played their part, causing sorrow to the family.

In 1859, they moved to Fountain Green, here their last child, Isaac Lester, was born.  He was a real comfort to them after so much sorrow.  Another tragedy came on June 1, 1862 when sixteen-year-old Silas William was thrown from a horse and killed.

Soon after this they were called to help settle Holden in Millard County.  Here they hoped to make a permanent home. They were together until June 21, 1873 when her husband died quite suddenly.  He was not an old man but the trials and hardships they had endured made him look old and worn out.  Now she was alone except for her youngest son who must be away much of the time to earn the living.  She spent her remaining years in Holden near her youngest daughter.  She passed away on August 11, 1881 to a well-earned reward.  She was laid to rest by the side of her husband in the little cemetery in Holden.

On her gravestone was inscribed:

“Remember friends as you pass by

As you are now so once was I,

As I an now you yet must be

To death must bow as well as me.”

About 1962 under the direction of Grant R. Walker, a GGG Grandson and Farrell Holman, a GG Grandson, a new headstone was placed at the graves of Naomi Roxanna LeBaron and her husband James Sawyer Holman, in the Holden cemetery.

(from the files of Mary Jean Caldwell)

Matilda Arnold Walker, Almost a Centenarian


Almost a Centenarian from Newspaper of 1891

Died in Superior, Washtenaw Co., Feb. 1st 1891  Mrs. Matilda Walker, aged 91 years, 2 months and 4 days.  The deceased was born in the state of Maryland but moved with her parents to the state of New York when quite young and was married to Henson Walker in 1815 and came with her husband and children to Michigan and settled in township of Oceola in 1835.  Two years after arrival here, Mrs. Walker united with the M. E. Church, and remained a faithful  and consistent member until her death.  She was the mother of seven sons and two daughters of whom seven are still living.  Lewis Walker died in 1863 and Sarah Watrous in 1881; John Walker age 74 resides in Wayne Co.; George age 72 resides in Salem, Washtenaw Co.; Henson age 70 resides in Utah; Richard age 67, Thomas age 60, and Robert age 58 live in Oceola Township.  The youngest Cassie A. Pearson age 53 resides in Superior where Mrs. Walker died.  Seldom indeed are children as old as these blessed with a living parent.  She was rarely sick and retained her mental faculties remarkably well until a few hours proceeding her death.  The funeral services were conducted by Rev. J. H. Kilpatrick and were held at the residence of Richard Walker in Oceola on Wednesday last and the remains were interred in Oceola Riddle Cemetery.  A long and useful life is ended and another link in the chain which bound the buried to the past to the living present has been broken by the blighting hand of death.  She leaves to her children and her children’s children the memory of a noble life and a heritage of love and Christian life.

taken from a scrapbook—newspaper clippings belong to the late Clyde Pettibone family—prepared by Matilda F. Pettibone. 

Mary Jane Bezzant Wright


by Donald Wright—1955

The poet cried out in the rapture of his soul, “Oh what is so rare as a day in June.”  The nineteenth of June 1876 was a rare day for the family of the English immigrant Matthew Bezzant and his good English wife, Maria Ann Cook.  They were welcoming that day a newcomer to their home.  Although Matthew had nine times before welcomed a new little spirit into his home and although this was the fifth time the mother had gently snuggled a newborn gift by her side, their joys were unbounded.

They seemed to realize, as often parents do, that this new one was the last treasure that they would be permitted to create a mortal body for.  Hence, their love for the little girl was unstinted.

Now was the joy of her brothers and sisters, who were to be her playmates and companions through life, limited.  For Alfred, Emily Ann, Martha, and even little Joseph could hardly contain themselves.  Her two half-brothers, Mark and Sam (her two half-sisters had died in England), made themselves special messengers to spread the good work that, “It’s a girl.”

So in a little two-room lumber house in the west part of Lindon (then called Stringtown) Mary Jane Bezzant made her appearance on the world’s great stage.  Today the address where this frame house stood would be about 753 West Lakeview Drive, in Lindon, Utah.

Had she been able to talk, little Mary would have said as Nephi did, “I was born of goodly parents.”  Her father was a solid farmer, who had sacrificed much to make a home for his family near the headquarters of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint, to which he had been converted and which he loved.

Her mother, too, had made a sacrifice to come to “Zion.”  She had been driven from her home by her father because she had courage to join a church that was not popular among the people of England.

Mother’s younger days were spent in a fashion common to the time.  Much time was spent in work as she helped, along with the other members of her family, to wrest a livelihood from the fifteen-acre farm her father owned.  Mother remembers helping her father plant and pick up potatoes and doing other farm jobs.  She helped her mother gather and dry fruit for the family’s winter use.  With the other girls her age, she would gather cherries, scald and dry them and take them to Provo to sell to help buy her winter clothes.  She says they were happy days, for they found joy in the companionship of one another as they worked.

But all was not work.  Happiness and fun had a choice place in the humble home and in the pleasant neighborhood.  Speaking of her father, Mother says that he was always good to the children.  She remembers him taking the family on outing to Utah Lake to swim and have a picnic and fishing trips to Provo River.  There was bobsledding in the winter and hay rack rides in the summer.  Her father used to store apples in the ground and then open one pit each month during the wintertime and Mother remembers the gay occasions it was for the whole neighborhood when the pits were opened.

Just below the family home was a big sand hill.  There in the evening, crowds of all ages would gather.  There were the Wrights, the Pierponts, the Gillmans, and the Dittmores; friend of Alf, Emily, Marth, Joe, and Mary ready to join in the games around the big bonfire.  Above all, Mother remembers the wonderful celebrations that were held on the Fourth and Twenty-fourth of July with their speeches, games, parades and lemonade.  Mother says, “Oh, what fun we used to have.”

The church was an integral part of this home.  There was no ward in Stringtown then, so Grandfather used to load the family wagon and take them four miles to the Pleasant Grove Ward, where John Brown was Bishop.  Grandmother would pack a lunch to be eaten after Sunday School and then the whole family would stay for Sacrament Meeting in the afternoon.  Then it was hurry home, so that, with all the family pitching in, the chores could be done before dark.  Later a ward was organized in Lindon, with James Cobbley as Bishop, and the Bezzants lent their strength to that organization.

Mother remembers some of those who taught her in church.  There were Martha Wooley and Robert Cobbley in Sunday School; Suzanna Wooley, the Primary President; and Harriet Cullimore, the Mutual President (“Oh, she was so good!”).

There was schoolwork, too.  Oftentimes the winters were very bad.  Then Grandfather would bundle up Mary and Joe and take them to school.  But in the fall and spring the two happy youngsters would load on their favorite horse, Old Puss, and ride to and from school.

Her teachers were May Robinson Driggs, Della Winters, Augusta Winters (Mrs. Heber J. Grant), Addie Stewart, John Dalley and D. H. Robinson.  Her favorites were May and D. H.

At the age of twelve, Mother contracted Typhoid Fever.  She was very ill and lost much of her hair as a result of the fever.  Her hearing was also impaired.  Although her hair grew in again, her hearing remained poor for the rest of her life.

When Mother was fourteen, sorrow came to the home with the death of her father.  However, after the first deep sorrow had passed, Grandmother insisted that life should go on much the same as it had done before.

Mother worked out during the summer months and continued her school in the winter.  She worked in the homes of L. O. Taft and Roy Barney in Provo and for Dr. Steel, R. S. Richards and John Evans (father of Richard L. Evans) in Salt Lake.  Mother has always enjoyed doing house work.

But with all the work and school, there was still time for pleasure.  Her girl companions were Bessie, Annie and Clara Pierpont, Eva Keetch, Sara Ashton Emily Cobbley, Ellen Banks, and Eva Dittmore.  They enjoyed basket parties, dances at the Lindon Hall and dramatics.  Her brother Joe used to be in the plays quite often.  Mother used to recite during the intermission.

There were parties in the young people’s homes and out in the sand hills.  There were candy pulls and visits around the community.  There was a large group of young people Mother’s age, but of them all she seemed closest to the Pierpont girls.  They spent much time in each others homes until the Pierponts moved away.  (Mr. Pierpont was a polygamist and on the underground.)  The person nearest to Mother, of this young group, was her sister Emily.  They remained very close all through life to the time of Aunt Em’s death.

Just across the field from the Bezzants lived Hyrum I. Wright, his wife and family of ten children.  On 13 May 1902 his wife, Annie Harper, passed away leaving him with a family to raise.  Mother had known Father as a neighbor for many years and on June 10, 1904, she married and was sealed to him in Salt Lake City.  In doing so she took over the responsibility of a family, four of them six years old or younger.  Many young women would soon have tired of such a burden, but Mother made a good home for this family as well as her own.  Father’s first family come to hold Mother in the highest esteem and reverence.

Six more children were added to Mother and Father’s family.  They were Clifford LeRoy, Joseph, Mary Lucille, Harold Mathew, Emily Marie, and Isaac Donald.  (Clifford LeRoy was Mary Jane’s child and brought to the union with her.)

Mother and Father always provided a happy home for their children.  Until 1919 they lived on a farm in Lindon.  In that year they moved to a small fruit farm in Pleasant Grove.  Both Father and Mother loved to have company,  and it seemed that people liked to come to their home, for company was always there.  We children always felt free to bring our friends and knew that they would be welcomed.  Many people who were friends of the children remember trips they took with the family or the dinners they ate at Mother’s table.  Mother and Dad loved it.

Indicative of this attitude was the fact that the folks had one of the first phonographs in the community.  It played cylinder records and had a long horn on it and a handle on the side.  It had to be wound to make it play.  The neighbors would  come in to listen to it and enjoy an evening with the Wrights, Grandmother Bezzant, who spent her last years in Mother and Dad’s home, never ceased to be impressed by the talking machine.  “Well,” she would say, “what will they do next and how will they do it?”

Father and Mother also had one of the early cars in the area.  It was a large seven-passenger Studebaker.  All of the children remember it and the rides they took in it.  They used that car until 1924, when they sold it for something more modern.

After her marriage, Mother continued to be active in Church work.  She was a member of the sunshine committee in Lindon Ward for about four years.  Others on that committee were Aunt Annie Wright, Eva Thorne and Annie Anderson.  They used to go about visiting the shut-ins and taking them something.  It was a service Mother enjoyed doing.  She also busied herself at quilting around the community, thus combining her social activity with something practical.

When she moved Pleasant Grove, Mother became a Relief Society teacher.  Her first companion was Mrs. Rosetta Weeks, with whom she served for about twenty years.  Since then she has continued to serve in this capacity with different companions.  This work in which she is still engaged also has brought her much joy.

She served for a time as a member of the Relief Society refreshment committee.  Father and Mother were called to a temple mission to do endowments for the dead for six months in January of 1934.  They completed the assigned work and were given an honorable release in July of that year.

Mother always enjoyed Church activity and meetings, especially funerals.  We children joked with her some about never missing a good funeral.  She has liked to attend her Relief Society and Sunday School classes.  After Father’s death she attended every general Conference until television made it easier for her to hear by staying home.

After moving to Pleasant Grove, Mother took great pride in the lovely home Father provided for her.  While Dad had the “green thumb” and did the gardening, Mother found deep satisfaction in its loveliness.  She  helped in picking the fruit and berries and seemed to find pleasure in doing so.

Mother says of these years, “They were wonderful years.  My husband kept our fruit farm beautiful.  There were no weeds and he was a wonderful gardener.  We had the most beautiful flower garden and thought it was a paradise.  We were so happy and loved our home.  We wished it could go on and on.  But things don’t work out that way.”

In 1937 Father died.  All of the children were then married, with families of their own.  Mother could never have been happy living alone. Caring only for her own needs.  She sold her home to her daughter, Lucille, and has spent the last eighteen years going from one of our homes to the other as we have called her to help us in our hours of need.  Even as I write this she is preparing to go to Harold’s place to take care of his children while he and his wife go to San Francisco on business and pleasure.

In my own home, I don’t know how we could have managed without her so many times during these years.  She has laughingly said, that as she goes from home to home, she has baked enough bread to go around the world.  She often says that she couldn’t live without being busy.  She says that when the day comes that she isn’t needed she will die.  Judging from the great demands we children make of her now, she will live forever.

All of Mother’s life has not been smooth.  Since her early years she has been handicapped with her hearing.  Shortly after moving to Pleasant Grove she had a second serious illness of her life.  Her hearing became worse as a result of this.  Since 1938 she has worn a hearing aid.  Although almost totally deaf without it, Mother has never complained and has adjusted her life beautifully to her disability.

Only one other time did she ever have a serious illness.  She was spending the Christmas season with Margaret and me in Tooele in 1947.  Shortly after the first of the year she became ill and had cramps in her stomach.  She refused to let me call a doctor for a day or two, until finally I insisted.

We took her to a clinic.  Her appendix was ruptured and had been for some time.  She was then approaching her seventy-second birthday.  The doctors were so concerned with her condition that they would not delay the operation even long enough for any of the other children to get there.

She asked to be administered to and President Alex F. Dunn was called in.   Mother says of this occasion:

“He was one of the most spiritual men I have ever been around.  He came just before I went to the operation table.  When he started to administer to me, all fear left me.  He told me I would go through the operations safe and be made well and strong again.  When he stopped praying, I thanked him for coming and said, ‘It is wonderful to feel your influence.’

“He said, ‘Now, don’t worry, you will come through it all right.’

“Then she said, ‘I know I will if you say so.’

“‘It isn’t me saying so,’ President Dunn replied, ‘It is the voice of the Lord, so you will be made well.’

“I never felt a bit afraid after that, I wasn’t afraid at all.  Every night I was in the hospital  I was administered to for the first week.  I surely do believe in administration.  I know what it means.  I got well, and my chances were not too good either.”

Mother has told me that she firmly believes she was healed by the power of the Lord.  I testify that the doctors expressed very little hope of pulling her through by their own skill.

After Father’s death, Mother did some traveling.  She made three trips to Denver with Aunt Em to visit Gene, Aunt Em’s son.  She and Aunt Em also made a trip with Harold to California and up the Pacific Coast.  She has been to Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Boulder Dam and all over southern Nevada and to southern California.  She made the latter trip with Aunt Josephine and spent a month in and around Los Angles visiting relatives.  It was in her words, “a most wonderful trip.”

Mother has always had a wonderful ability to make friends.  I suppose it is because she is so friendly herself.  She is always sending cards to people she knows on their anniversaries, when they are sick, or bereaved.  Her friendliness, kindness, and thoughtfulness have repaid her many times over, for there are people scattered in many cities where she has been who hold her in respect and love.

And now, eighty years have passed since that rare day in June in 1876.  Many changes have taken place in her full life.  indicative of these is the fact that in her life, Mother says she has “ridden behind ox teams, horses and wagons, one- horse buggies, two-horse surreys, and automobiles.”

Mother has wept at the bier of all her family who were present on that June day long ago.  She has wept at the death of her husband, two sons, five stepchildren, and two grandchildren.  Many of the old friends, too, have passed beyond.

As she prepares to greet her friends on her eightieth birthday, what is her philosophy of life?  it is simple:  “Live each day and get all the joy and happiness out of it you can.”

What word would she leave to us today?  I’ll let her say it:

“I am so thankful for my family and I know how really blessed I am to have them.  All of my children attended BYU, and my grandchildren are now in the colleges.  I hope and pray that they will continue to live and appreciate the gospel because I know that it is the only thing that will bring true happiness.

“I appreciate my membership in the church more than anything in life.  I have a strong testimony of the gospel.”

And I add the Savior’s words recorded in Matthew, the namesake of her Father:  “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.”   (Matthew 25:21)



by Emily Wright Tyler—her daughter

Mother always worked hard.  She would get very tired.  She dreamed one night that she washed all night long.

Mother made eight loaves of bread every morning while the family lived on the farm.  This she did while Lucille and I washed the breakfast dishes.  She would can about 1000 quarts of fruit a year, using rubber rings on the bottles and aluminum lids that had to be tightened by hand.

Mother was an excellent Relief Society visiting teacher.  While on the farm she went in a horse and buggy.  After moving “uptown” she would walk.  She dearly loved Relief Society day, which was usually on Tuesday.  She and Father were called to do a certain number of temple endowments in a year.  They would travel to Salt Lake on the interurban—an electric streetcar, which ran on rails from Payson to Salt Lake City.

Mother was an industrious person.  In later years if she sat down, she had needlework or crocheting in hand.  She made many temple aprons for the stake when stakes handled temple clothing.  Her children and many of her grandchildren have temple aprons she made.

Mother had her own cow.  She was extremely fussy about the cleanliness of her food and, in fact, everything around her.  She would not use milk that anyone else milked.  She milked her cow herself and kept this milk to use in her home.  On the farm they had many cows, but Mother always had her special one.  When we left the farm and moved uptown, she took her own cow.  She could be seen twice a day going to milk her cow with two buckets and some clean cloths.  One bucket for the milk and one with warm water to wash the cow down and the cloths to wipe the cow clean.  When she returned to the house, the milk was carefully strained using the regular milk strainer, plus a clean cloth for any other impurities.  The milk was then poured into shallow pans and placed in the cool basement room.  Next day thick cream was skimmed off with a cream skimmer.  Most of this was churned into butter.  If ever there was extra butter, it was in demand by the neighbors.

Mother was ill, bedridden with a heart condition for some time.  It became harder and harder for her to get around and it was finally necessary to take her to a rest home, where she could be bathed and cared for properly.  She died at the Utah Valley Convalescent Center, where she resided until she passed away on 26 March 1965.

Patriarch Warren B. Smith promised her, as he laid his hands on her head on 26 February 1921: “I seal you up against the powers of darkness and unto eternal life to come forth in the morning of the first resurrection holding a queenly position in thy family in the eternal world. . . . Thy name will be honored through thy children from generation to generation.”

She gave each love and support.  With this came a feeling of security.  I grew up feeling good about myself, and when I left her, I was able to face life’s problems on my own.  During my growing up years, I was as happy as a child could be.  Almost all my memories of this time revolve around her.  This is tribute to her.  I grew up with a strong, healthy body, love for the gospel, faith in myself and what I could do.  She was indeed a good mother.


Don Wright—her son

We think food storage is a new idea.  It was just part of life for Father and Mother.  Each fall they would get a supply of flour in fifty-pound bags and sugar in hundred-pound sacks.  They stored these over the cellar stairway in Pleasant Grove and in the pantry in Lindon.  When I was young, I used to play “Jack in the Beanstalk” and climb over them.

They also stored apples, potatoes, squash, cabbage, and carrots in the cellar under the shanty.  Father raised all these.  Mother bottled fruit that was stored in a cupboard in the same cellar.

They also put in a year’s supply of coal in the coal-shed.  There was always a large wood pile to use as fuel.

Father always raised one or two pigs each year.  We would feed them in the summer and they would feed us in the winter.  Dad raised chickens mostly for our own use and a few eggs to trade at the store.  He liked to try various kinds of chickens.  I remember an incident connected with this.  He had some Partridge Wyndottes, a large meat-type chicken.  He had a couple of roosters of which he was especially proud.  One day Mother opened some bottled beets that were spoiled.  Not thinking, she put them in with the other scraps and threw them into the pen with the roosters.  Next morning both roosters were dead, poisoned by the beets.

Mother was a good cook.  The food she prepared was wholesome and tasty.  She was meticulously clean and set a nice table.

Mother, with the whole family involved, would clean the house twice each year, although the house was always clean.  This was a big project.  As children we dreaded housecleaning time.  The curtains were taken down and the carpets taken up from the floor.  Every piece of furniture was moved.  The contents of every drawer dumped out.  The drawers, along with everything else in the room, were scrubbed clean.

Oh, what a clean fresh smell came from a room after it had been house cleaned.  How proud all the women were when they finished their spring and fall house cleaning.  Then was the time to invite company and celebrate.

My job was to pull the tacks out of the carpet so that they could be moved.  The carpets were taken outside and placed over the clothesline.  The dirt was beaten out of them with sticks or rug beaters that looked something like tennis rackets.


Lucille W. Walker—her daughter

I remember Mother carrying water from the well in Lindon.  All water for house use was carried from a pump well by the side of the house.  I remember the large amount of water Mother carried in a bucket in both hands on washday.

We had an apple orchard in back of the house in Lindon.  Nearly every summer the neighbors would gather around big tables under the apple trees and all would peel and quarter apples for drying.

Another big day was the day we threshed grain.  Mother would cook for a week before the men came, making tables of pies and cakes.  They sometimes were there for two days and Mother prepared all their meals, including breakfast.  She worked hard and never complained.

It seemed like everyone in the family that died was brought to our house for the viewing in our parlor, and how frightened I was of that room when I was small.

Mother use to read to Father in the long winter evenings.  They would sit around the stove and Mother read while Father was busy doing something with his hands, maybe making the children whistles or tops or a tippie.


Jerry Walker—a grandson

She didn’t know how not to be doing something or to be idle.  I can still see her sitting in the kitchen with the large ten-gallon bread mixer gripped between her thighs as she turned a large batch of dough that would soon be put into the oven and baked in loaves of delicious bread.  No one, it seemed in those days could make bread as good or tasty as she.

I remember her as a very patient, gentle, and compassionate woman.  She loved to visit, just talk with neighbors, friends, relatives, or even us unimportant kids—but it didn’t seem we were unimportant to her but very important.  We got her full attention!

She believed in the mission of Joseph Smith and of Christ and of the authenticity of the Book of Mormon.  Being a true mother in Zion, she is worthy of the highest esteem and honor and reverence that can be given her by her children and grandchildren.


Lamont Tyler—a grandson

One of my vivid memories of Grandmother is of her telling me about the coming of electric power to the family home in Lindon.  Grandfather negotiated with the power company, who wanted to string lines across his farm to the sugar beet plant west of his home, to bring power to his house.  She told me often of the many things they acquired as a result.


Marilyn W. Krantz—a granddaughter

I remember holding out my arms to hold her yarn as she rolled it into balls and watching her quilt with such perfect stitches.  She had great pleasure in making and presenting us with aprons, especially temple aprons in our teens.  She just couldn’t do enough for her family.


Norman E. Wright—a grandson

When I think of Grandma, I think of books, good books.  This was often her gift to her children or grandchildren on those very special occasions when she wanted to give something lasting or that would have uplifting impact.  And impact it had, particularly on me.  A good book is, indeed, a treasure in one’s life, and to have the note inside “From your Grandmother on your graduation” penned in the flyleaf made it doubly so.


Glen Walker—a grandson

I can still see her sitting on the couch knitting.  I even use to help her roll yarn.  I remember her reading her scriptures.  She did a lot of it.  I have her book.  It is well used.


Beverly W. Merrill—a granddaughter

I always remember Grandma and Aunt Em coming to dinner, especially their visits on Memorial Day.  Grandma always had lovely dresses and as a young girl I loved her beads and earrings.  I can never remember her dirty in appearance.  She was always clean in attire, hair neat, and always wore a clean apron.  She was the only person who called me by my full name, Beverly Ann.


James Walker—a grandson

I remember the raspberry patch and early mornings.  I remember Memorial Day and the washtubs of flowers and taking them to the cemetery with her and Aunt Em.  I especially remember the mouse in the root cellar under the old shanty.


LeGrand Wright—a grandson

The greatest friend of a grandson.  I remember her going to town and always upon returning she gave out her favorite surprise, orange slices.  It was always a great occasion when she visited.  She was a great checker player!


Richard Wright—a grandson

She would come to Salt Lake City from Pleasant Grove on a bus.  Many times we would not know when she would arrive and she would just walk up to the house with her suitcase.  When I had my tonsils out, she was there and read Janet and me stories until it was our turn to go into the kitchen and have the operation on the kitchen table.  She took the best of care until we recovered.  She was always where she was needed.


Austin Tyler—a son-in-law

I remember Grandma Wright telling of her parents going to the temple.  They drove from Pleasant Grove to Salt Lake City by ox team—two days to go to Salt Lake, one day spent at the temple and two days to return.

(from the files of Mary Jean Caldwell)



Margaret Mann (Munn) was born in Thomastown, Franklin, Pennsylvania on 11 December 1801.  Her parents, David Mann and Mary Rock, had twelve children.  Her father died when she was four years old, leaving her mother with six boys and five girls; one child died in infancy.  Seven years later the mother died, and the following year Margaret was taken into the home and into the hearts of Daniel and Ann Borier.  They were kind, religious people and were Protestants.

The Borier’s kept a tavern.  They had a son who devotedly loved their foster daughter and wished to make her his wife.  So pure and unselfish was their love for Margaret that they refused their consent because they felt their son was not worthy of this girl, who they loved and treated as their own daughter.

Margaret was blessed with wonderful health and delighted to pay her foster parents with service.  She milked cows, churned, washed dishes, went to market and often got out of bed at midnight to prepare a meal for some delayed traveler.  She could not remember that she ever was tired.

This kind couple provided for her education in the best way they could.  There was a little log schoolhouse near, with a German teacher.  The only study was reading the German language, which was spoken exclusively in her home.  “Our teacher was a quiet man.” She said, “He would march us up in front by rapping on the table with a stick. When through, we would take our seats.”

When Margaret was fourteen years old she was a woman of responsibility and was destined to soon meet her future husband.  To their home one day came a fine looking young man of fair complexion to borrow an auger.  So impressed was she with his looks and personality that she inquired his name.  It was Jacob Foutz, who was of German descent.  “Right then,” Margaret said, “I decided that he was the man I wanted to marry.”  After a smooth sailing courtship of five years, they were married 22 July 1822 (or 1819) by a priest in Greencastle and went to housekeeping in their brother-in-law’s house.

The young husband was a bricklayer by trade and made a good living.  They moved from Pennsylvania to Star County, Ohio where they lived for several years.

Until this time, Margaret had never joined any church.  Here in Ohio, they both became Methodists.  They traveled by ox-team to Richland County in the same state hoping to better their condition.  Soon after arriving in Richland County, Jacob was away attending a two-day Methodist revival and while he was gone, two men called at their home saying they were preachers of the Gospel.  They asked if they might stay all night.  Margaret directed them to their neighbors, although she knew they had no more room than the Foutz’s had.  But that night she attended their meeting and said she did not believe a word they said.

Her husband returned the next day and they both attended the meeting that evening and listened to Elders Derby and Tripple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  “My husband,” said Margaret, “returned home that evening a believer in this new religion in spite of the fact that he had just returned the day before from the Methodist revival and he said, “This is just what I have been looking for.”  The following day he was baptized into the church.  I called him “green” their, but a month later, I too recognized the truth and joined the Church.”

Jacob Foutz was soon called to preside over the branch of the church there.  He had a throat or lung infection and it had reached the stage where he could not speak above a whisper but he said, “If the Lord wants me to preside He will restore my health,” and he was administered to by the Elders and made whole immediately.

Said Margaret, “The following summer we moved to Missouri to join the other Saints and we bought land on Crooked River and while here my husband was chosen with a few others to guard Brother Haun’s mill as a mob had threatened to destroy it.

There is quoted here some incidents relating to the Haun’s Mill Massacre, recorded late in life as she recalled them:

“I was at home with my little family of five children and could hear the firing of guns.  In a moment I knew that the mob was upon us.  Soon a runner came telling the women and children to hasten into the woods and secret themselves.  This we did in all haste without taking anything to keep us warm; and had we been fleeing from the scalping knife of the Indian we would not have made greater haste.  As we ran from house to house, gathering as we went, we finally numbered about forty or fifty women and children.

“We ran about three miles into the woods and there huddled together, spreading what few blankets and shawls we chanced to have upon the ground for the children.  There we remained until two o’clock the next morning before we heard anything of the result of the firing at the mill.  Who can imagine our feelings during this dreadful suspense?  When the news did come, lo!  What terrible news!  Fathers, brothers, husbands killed!

“We now took up the line of march for home, but alas what a home!  Who would we find there?  Now with our minds full of the most fearful forebodings, we retraced those three long, dreary miles.  As we were returning I saw Brother Myers who had been shot through the body.  In that dreadful state he had crawled on his hands and knees about two miles to his home.

“On the way to the mill, in the first house I came to, there were three dead men.  One, a Brother McBride, was a terrible sight to behold, having been cut and chopped and mangled with a corn cutter.  I was told he was a survivor of the Revolutionary War.

“After I arrived at my house with my children, I hastily made a fire to warm them and then started for the mill, about two miles distant.  My children would not remain at home as they said, “If father and mother are going to be killed, we want to be with them.”  I hurried on, looking for my husband and finally found him in an old house covered with some rubbish.  He had been shot in the thigh.  I there rendered him all the aid that I could, but it was evening before I could get him home.

“I saw thirteen more dead bodies at the shop and witnessed the beginning of the burial which consisted in throwing the men that the mob had killed into a vault that formerly was intended for a well.  They threw the bodies in headfirst or feet first as the case might be.  When they had thrown in three my heart sickened and I could not stand it more.  I turned away to keep from fainting.

“My husband and another brother had drawn dead bodies over themselves and pretended to be dead.  By so doing they saved their own lives and heard what some the mob said.  After the firing was over two little boys that were in the shop begged for their lives, but no, one of the mob said, “They will make Mormons “ and he put the muzzle of his gun to the boys’ heads and blew their brains out.”

“Oh, what change one short day had brought!  Here were our friends dead and dying, one in particular asked me to take a hammer and give him relief by knocking his brains out, so great was his agony.  And in all this we knew not what moment our enemies would be upon us again.  All this suffering, not because we had broken any law, on the contrary, it was part of our religion to keep the laws of the land, but because the evil spirit was at work among the children of men.

“In the evening Brother Evans got a team and wagon and conveyed my husband to our home.  He carried him in and placed him on the bed.  I then had to attend him alone, without a doctor or anyone to tell me what to do for him.  Six days later my husband, himself, helped me to extract the bullet, which was buried deep in the thick part of his thigh and was flattened like a knife.  We did this with a kitchen knife.

“During the first ten days the mob came every day with blackened faces (more like demons from the infernal pit than like human beings) cursing and swearing that they would kill the old Mormon preacher, who was my husband.  At times like these when human nature would quail, I have felt the power of God upon me to that degree that I have stood before the mob fearless although a woman and alone, these demons in human shape had to succumb to the power which they knew not of.  During these days of danger I sometimes hid my husband out in the woods behind our home and covered him with leaves.  When he was able to sit up he was dressed as a woman and put at the spinning wheel.  In this way his life was protected.  Thus, during my husband’s illness was I harassed by mobocratic violence.”

In another account she tells of how one afternoon a mob of sixty or seventy men came, their faces were blackened and they were riding full speed.  Margaret was on her way to get a pail of water when the mob spied her and began shooting.  She threw herself behind a large fallen tree and lay there unhurt until they left boasting, “there is one woman less.”

When Margaret returned to her home and five children, her son came and told her to run for her life to the woods.  Later, twenty-eight bullets were cut out of the log where she had first fallen and many more were picked up from the ground where she had fallen.  All that night she, with some forty or fifty women and children huddled together in the woods with a few shawls and blankets.

The story is told that on one occasion when the mob to Sister Foutz’s looking for her husband, she felt the power of God upon her to such an extent that she totally unafraid.  She commanded the mobbers, inasmuch as they had killed and injured the men of the community, to kill and dress a pig for her and her little ones to eat.  These men trembled before this little woman and did as she had told them to do.  Sister Foutz often told how she surprised herself on such occasions, but she was humble and gave credit and thanks to her God for this extra courage and strength.

President Brigham Young was also among the number at Haun’s Mill and although the balls flew around him like hail, he was not wounded.

While in Missouri, Susan, the eldest child, was very sick with a fever.  She had been speechless for twenty-four hours.  The Prophet Joseph was traveling through the country and stopped a half-mile from their home.  They sent for him and he sent two of the brethren in his stead.  They knelt down and prayed and then administered to her.  The next morning Susan got up and ate her breakfast and that same morning called at their home and shook hands with everyone and said, “I knew she would be all right this morning.”

In February 1839 the Saints were driven by the mobs from Missouri.  They took refuge in Illinois and Iowa.  Margaret’s husband, Jacob, in the Nauvoo area successively served as a Bishop’s Counselor, Bishop of the Nauvoo Fifth and Eighth Wards.  He was a Bishop when the Saints were driven from Nauvoo.

“I received my endowments and second anointing in the Nauvoo Temple,” Margaret tells us.

Jacob Foutz was a captain of the second fifty in his company in crossing the plains, which started in June 1847 from Winter Quarters.  They arrived in Salt Lake Valley 25 September 1847.  Margaret and her husband worked hard to get settled in this new land.  Jacob worked long hours in building their adobe house, hauling logs and sawing them into flooring and with hand saws.  He had never fully recovered from the wound he received at Haun’s Mill and with the hardships in crossing the plains his life was shortened.  Five month after arriving in Salt Lake City he passed away, leaving his wife and children, the youngest but five week old.  Jacob was Bishop of his ward in Salt Lake City until his death.  Their earthly possessions besides the adobe house consisted of seven bushels of wheat, two cows, one city lot, and five acres of sagebrush land.  Of their twelve children, five died without raising families.  (Margaret speaks in one biography as being a widow and eight children.)  The rest of their children all grew to manhood and womanhood, raised a numerous posterity, which is scattered from Canada to Mexico, and as far as we know, they all belong to the Church of their parents.

In March 1852 Margaret moved with her family to Pleasant Grove, Utah.  They first located on the land where the J. P. Hayes home now stands. (1937) Later they moved into a log cabin on the lot where the old Foutz home stood for many years.  This was on the northwest corner of First West and Center Street.  At that time there was a rock wall around the city, forming a fort.  This wall bordered the north side of the Foutz property.  February 20, 1882, George S. Clark, first Bishop of Pleasant Grove, wrote to the Deseret News:  “We have only five spinning wheels at present in operation, but hope soon to have many more so that we can have some of the best music in our domestic circles.”  Margaret, it seems had one of these five wheels and together with her daughter, Margaret, they spun wool for their neighbors.  They received wool for pay, which they made into homespun material and socks, selling the same for a good price.

In spite of the long hours spent in earning a living, their life in this pioneer country was not all toil.  Many evenings were spent in merrymaking at the Church socials and in homes of neighbors.  They often gathered for quilting bees, wool carding bees and so forth.  On these occasions the men folk would join them later in the evenings when the chores were done and they all enjoyed parched corn and apples or some simple refreshment, which the hostess was able to furnish.

Margaret M. Foutz was a splendid neighbor, independent, and she strictly practiced the Mormon creed, “Mind your own business.”  She was well liked by her neighbors.  She and her family enjoyed the friendship and association all in the little community.  Being a good neighbor and a good manager, Margaret found time to do for others as well as her own.  She was always ready to help and accommodate whenever she could.  She was an ideal Pioneer woman, honest, frugal, extremely neat, and made the best of every condition.  Her granddaughter, Mary Abigail White West, said of her:

“She could live in a hovel

And make of it a house of prayer

With peace for all who entered there.”

In 1876, when Margaret was living alone in her log home, one of her neighbors, Annie Swenson, who later became the wife of Ezra F. Walker, wrote the story of her life as Margaret dictated it to her.  The following paragraph is taken from this story:  “I am now in my seventy-sixth year, the mother of twelve children, fifty-two grandchildren and twelve great grandchildren.  I have witnessed the growth of our American government under the inspired document, the Constitution of the United States, and have rejoiced under the wise administration of pure and good laws.  And I have also witnessed law set at defiance, and mobocratic violence run rampant, yea, verily, when the wicked rule the people mourn.”

Later for some years this pioneer mother lived with her daughter, Catherine.  Her daughter, Maranda, did her washing and ironing and often fixed dainty food for her, but the mother was independent and to the last, chose to do for herself all that she could do.  Old as she was, she was good-natured and always looked on the bright side of everything.

On the morning of Aug. 5, 1896, Margaret arose as usual for breakfast.  She tidied up her room and seemingly was in good health but before noon, she had passed away.  Only her daughter, Catherine, was with her at the time.

This mother of twelve children, at the time of her death—95 years old—had 70 grandchildren, 126 great grandchildren, and 9 great, great grandchildren.

(from the files of Mary Jean Caldwell.)

Mary Lucille Wright


Lucille, as she was always called, was born 26th of July 1906 in Lindon, Utah.  As was the custom of the day she was born at her parents home.  She was the second child of Hyrum Isaac and Mary Jane Bezzant Wright.  Even so, with their combined families she was the thirteenth child and would eventually have one younger sister and two younger brothers.  She immediately became the much desired property of her older sister, Eileen.  Eileen loved to dress her up and play house with her.  They shared the same bedroom until Eileen married.

Her family consisted of her father, Hyrum who was a farmer and nurseryman; her mother, Mary Jane; a younger brother, Harold; a younger sister, Emily; and the family baby, Don.  Both parents had families before they married each other.  Four older brothers; Reuben, Bert, Cliff, and Leon were still at home as well as an older sister, Eileen; Eilee was her idol.  One of her fondest memories was playing with her brother, Bert.  He always seemed to have time for her.  He later drowned in Idaho when she was six years old.

Harold, being one and a half years younger, was her playmate.  One time they were playing butcher shop on their front porch using milkweed pods for meat.  They ran out of the milk weed pods and couldn’t find any more for the butcher shop, so Lucille went into the house and got a sharp knife and proceeded to prepare to cut Harold’s wrist for the badly needed meat.  Her mother caught her in the act and this was stopped immediately and for good.

Emily was three years younger and was the “little” sister.  As big sisters do, Lucille sometimes objected to her “tagging along” whenever she went anyplace, and was constantly trying to ditch her.  When they both became teenagers this quickly changed and they became very close sisters.

Don was seven years younger, so Lucille was his baby sitter.  The day he was born, the Doctor came down the street; Lucille, with Harold and Em in tow, went over to their Aunt Hattie’s to play with their cousins.  When they returned home they had a new baby brother.

On the horseshoe shaped street where she lived there were cousins by the dozens to play with and she was always allowed to go to play at one house or the other.  Roaming up, down and around the street was okay by her mother as long as she came when called or sent for.  Grandma Bezzant lived right across the street and down a little, living in a house built on short stilts.  Lucille knew well the adage “if Mama and Daddy say no, ask Grandma”.

Lucille was surrounded by cousins.  Aunt Hattie and Uncle Sam Bezzant lived down the street from her house with two girls about the same age and a boy just a little older.  She spent much of her younger life at their home.  She liked to spend the summer in their summer kitchen, it seemed there were always pies and cakes cooking and in the winter time it made a fine playhouse.  Oh, the good times she had with Clarissa and Chloe and Floyd.

On the top of the hill lived Uncle Jim and Aunt Annie Wright.  They also had children the same age.  One son Lafe was just a year older than Lucille and was one of her favorite cousins.  Vera, his sister, was one year younger.  They all picked Sego Lilies in the sand hills across from these cousins home, and made sand castles , tunnels, bridges and forts there.  Aunt Annie made the best chocolate pies anyone ever ate.

Up the street a ways lived Uncle Joe and Aunt Elva Bezzant.  That house had been Grandfather and Grandmother Bezzant’s home originally.  One day with cousins Mary and Elva D, Lucille crawled under the house to find ant furniture,  Lucille’s knee was cut on a piece of an old glass bottle which she knelt on and the adventure was canceled.  Elva and Lucille often were mean to Mary and aggravated her.  Once when Mary was angry, she decided to take Lucille’s rocking chair to her house, so Lucille and Elva D climbed on top of the barn and threw rocks at her.  She left the chair in the middle of the road and went home, which was what they wanted her to do..  Of course, the chair was retrieved and played with by Lucille and Elva D, which made them very happy as this was what they wanted in the first place.

Everyone in the family liked to play house on the haystack next to the barn.  The playhouse always extended to the attic above the barn.  That was the best fun.  The haystack was soft and they liked to play on it and slide down it.  This behavior was unacceptable to their father but sometimes they did it when he wasn’t around and ran the chance of punishment—they really weren’t too frightened as he was the gentlest, kindest man ever.

When Lucille started school her two older brothers, Lynn and Cliff, were assigned to carry her on their shoulders one mile to her friends house and then she walked the last mile to school with her.  In the winter sometimes her father would take them to school in the horse drawn buggy.  If the snow was too deep, he drove a sled.  There was no central heating in homes but there was at the school, so in the cold of the winter she wore two or three wool flannel petticoats under her dress, a panty waist (this looked like a vest) to hold up her heavy socks, long underwear (to the ankle and to the wrist), high top button shoes, boots, mittens, a muff over her hands, a heavy winter coat, a scarf over most of her face, neck and head, and a hat.  For the usual school day when the weather was warm she still had to wear high top button up shoes, long stockings, one petticoat, a dress and a cover-up apron.  One day she decided she didn’t want to wear the apron and hid it under the bridge after leaving home.  That afternoon she couldn’t find her apron when she returned.  Her mother gave her a scotch blessing and the punishment was such that she never did the stunt again.

The biggest thrill of all was when she would board the train alone and go to visit her Aunt Em and Uncle August Peterson and their family.  Her father would flag the train and see that she got on O.K.  Then the journey was up to her.  Aunt Em’s family always met her in Salt Lake City.  What a thrill to be in the big city.  Aunt Em was truly a second mother to her.  She lived on 2nd West and 8th South in Salt Lake City.

Lucille and her cousins walked to town to see the shows, sometimes they rode the trolley car.  It was great fun for a country girl.  The block was filled with children to play with and all were glad to see her again.  Lucille grew up as much with these cousins as she did with her friends in Lindon.  There were four girls and one boy in Aunt Em’s family.   Gene the boy was 11 years older than Lucille, Edna was about three years older, Tess one year older and Hazel one year younger.  Aunt Em’s husband, Uncle August, was a policeman at Liberty Park.  He would get tickets for the rides on all the concessions and at different eating places for free.  Did everyone ever have a good time!  Sometimes these visits lasted three or four weeks.  Then Lucille and one of the cousins, usually Tess, boarded the train for Pleasant Grove.

Just before her High School years started (seventh grade) her Dad sold his farm and moved to a fruit farm in Pleasant Grove—right next to the High School.  (This school later became the Third Ward meeting house).  It was here she met the young man who would become her husband.

Theirs was fruit farm with raspberries and gooseberries planted among the apricot, apple, pear, cherry and peach trees around the home.  Her father developed a strain called “Uncle Jim Hale” peaches.  She became a very proficient berry picker.  She would put on a large brim straw hat, a cover up apron over her dress (heaven forbid a lady wore pants), tie a lard bucket with an old silk stockings around her waist, and go out at dawn and stay until the two acres of berries were finished.

Her folks planted a rose bed with peonies around the edge of the garden on the east side of the house.   He father liked crossing different varieties of roses and this became a hobby of his.  (When Calvin and Lucille later sold this place to the Alpine School District, she would insist these roses go with her to their new home.)  There was a large lawn around the house on all sides.  In the front (south) lawn was a large evergreen which everyone seemed to want to have the cones from, they looked like small brown roses; across the lawn and down a little was a forsythia bush which made a good hiding place and a great playhouse.  Also on this side of the house were three walnut trees along the irrigation ditch.  On the west side of the house was a long hedge with a white and a purple lilac tree between it and the house.  In the back yard (north) was a Bartlett Pear tree and a Bing cherry tree next to the clothesline.  Here close by was also a shanty (coal bin, wash house and fruit shed combined), chicken coup, granary and carriage barn, and a barn for the cow.  When the family got their car (the first one in town) her Dad built it a garage.

At this time her father bought her a piano and she took lessons from A. R. Overlade. Originally he lived just through the Church House property and one more block west.  She became very proficient at playing the piano and during her last few years in High School she accompanied a lot of the musical performances and people in town.

When Lucille finished High School she immediately enrolled at the Brigham Young Academy, desiring to receive her normal degree and teach elementary school.  After finishing her first year, she couldn’t find a job close by so she went back for one more year.  She then got a teaching position in Lehi and rode the “Leaping Lena”—the urban back and forth from home to work.  All this time she corresponded with Calvin who was at the U.S.A.C. (Logan) and dated his buddies while he wasn’t around.

One story she would later tell to her daughters about her schooling was about a genealogy class she enrolled in during her second year.   She went to the class on the first day and was instructed what was expected of everyone and how the class would proceed.  The instructor gave the quarter’s assignment that day, told them they would take three trips to Salt Lake to the new Library the church had opened for research, and said as long as they were gathering their genealogy they didn’t need to come to class but he would be there for consultation during that hour for any who needed him.  Of course the grading was discussed!  For an “A” they would need to turn in all the family group sheets they now had and a pedigree chart and then at the end of the quarter they would need to have   eight new facts to the sheets.  For a “B” up to six new facts on the sheets were necessary, a “C” at least four new facts, a “D” was just two new facts and any thing less was an “F”—flunking the class.  She went to the next class and turned in her incomplete family group sheets belonging to her Grandparents.  During the rest of the quarter she faithfully studied “lawnology” with the boys and girls outside on the grass.  She had a great quarter during the genealogy class.  Then came finals!  She hadn’t even thought of the class assignment!  In desperation she asked the “lawnology” class for help.  She had just one hour before she would fail the class.  They all put their heads together and came up with a beautiful solution.  On her Grandfather Bezzant they gave him some brothers and sisters, the turned in sheet didn’t have any so why not.  So Mathew received brothers named Mark, Luke and John and two sisters named Elizabeth and Mary.  They were half way to an “A”.  So to complete the Cook sheet it would need two events so they “died off” two of Maria’s brothers.  Then her father’s family—oh yes—his father gained and lost a child called unknown.  All this was done via correspondence with the parishes they came from.  Excellent strategy except the instructor took all the work done in the class and submitted it to the new “Genealogy Library” in Salt Lake for all posterity to use for future research.  This would trouble her until all facts were corrected many years later.

When Calvin graduated from USAC with a teaching degree, they immediately got married and moved to Duchesne to teach.  Lucille had been considered the family old maid at the age of 23.  They were married in the Salt Lake Temple and honeymooned on their way to Duchesne.  While in Duchesne they spent a lot of their time with the Madison family who were originally from Pleasant Grove.

When Lucille got pregnant with her first child she discovered fish didn’t agree with her.  Calvin would fish for dinner and she would try to cook it.  It soon became her husband’s job to cook the dinner if they were having fish, the smell made her nauseous.  She never could stand fish, again.

The next year they moved to Lehi for two years and then to Pleasant Grove.  Lucille’s father passed away in 1937 and a short time later they bought her folks home.  Once again she was back to the fruit picking and canning all summer.  Summer canning was always a big deal and she organized her family to help her as soon as possible.  The older ones pealing the vegies and fruit, the younger one rinsing the food off and carrying their bowls of produce to the peelers.  By the time it got to the peaches and pears everyone was sick of it and everyone got silly.  Lucille would end up with side aches laughing with her children at nothing.  If someone got her going she couldn’t stop.  But it got the work done in a good mood.  You would think her children would learn that she was out of commission when her side ache got bad and they would have to finish the job by themselves but they just couldn’t help themselves.

She tolerated and enjoyed a good, clean joke among the family (April Fools day was always a big deal and you hardly dared to eat breakfast for fear of what was in the pepper and salt shaker and the sugar bowl).  She even encouraged the boys by looking the other way when they tied Grandma Wright to a chair with her apron strings.  (Even Aunt Hattie and Aunt Tish were fair game for the kids.)  But the minute it got out of hand she immediately put a stop to it, “enough is enough,” she would say and her children knew she meant it.

She was a mother that believed in bribery.  “If you will clean up the kitchen, I will talk your Dad into a picnic on the west side of the lake,” she would say.  Or maybe it was a trip to their cousins in American Fork Canyon for a picnic or a trip to the town dump going fast over the bump in the road on the hill.  It was a treat so everyone pitched in.  Picnics were a family tradition.  They went places like the Big Springs Farm, Aunt Josie’s, Uncle Tom’s house up the canyon, Uncle Austin’s and Provo City Park, Tabiona for pine nuts, West Canyon, Battle Creek, Granite Flat, Pittsburgh Lake, Tibble Fork, Mutual Dell, and the top of the Divide.  The list could on and on.  Frequently friends and cousin were taken so everyone sat two deep,  “what difference can a few extra mouths make with this crowd” was her answer to her children when they asked to take a friend.

Every fall when Calvin attended the UEA convention, she took her daughters and went shopping.  Usually there was $10.00 in her purse when she started out and $5.00 when she finished for lunch had to be bought.  But every hat, coat, dress and shoe anyone wanted to try on was tried on.  It was always a day to remember and a day to look forward to, after all the boys were left at home baby sitting.

She felt she needed to teach all her girls to sew, clean a house, can, and cook.  The funny mistakes made like greasing a pie pan, burning boiled eggs and putting a left sleeve in the right armhole were laughed at by both and corrected.  Many times a dress or blouse wanted was seen in a store and then the sewing machine went to humming as it was made like the one in the store, but in a favorite color, at home.  Even the boys were taught and knew how to cook and clean a house if they ever need to do so.

Christmas was a big thing to her.  The house was decorated on Mary Jean’s birthday and the decorations were taken down on Della’s birthday.  Not many families could brag of a full month of the Christmas Tree or Valentines on their tree.  On Christmas Eve the family gathered to open Christmas presents from each other; that was as big as Christmas and everyone had a lot to be thankful for.  Grandma Wright always chastised the family for opening presents before Christmas Day and then went to her room to get presents to open besides what the family had given her.  She always wanted to be with us for Christmas because it was such a joyous occasion.  Grandma Josie Walker loved the tradition and after Ben married and left home she would often join the family for the festivities

During the years as her family was growing up, she was active in her church.  She served in the Primary, Sunday School, Relief Society and YWMIA as a teacher and in the Presidencies.  When her husband was Bishop she was one of the very first Cub Scout Den Leaders of the ward.

As the years moved on the children started to marry and leave home.  Each one was hard for her and also a joy because of who they married.  Many moved away and that meant trips to parts of the country she had never seen.  She was able to see the historic country and church sites and attend many church pageants.  They even went to Israel, walking all over the country.  Now she and Calvin were back at the beginning, just the two of them at home.  They worked in the Provo Temple, which they loved doing.  She cooked and cared for her first and only love and kept up their home.  They bought a Volkswagen Bus and went fishing.  She still didn’t like to eat fish and wouldn’t fish but she had her own pole given to her as a present from her husband.  She always took her crocheting and tatting along to keep her busy and a book just in case.  No one ever knew what “just in case” meant.

When Calvin died in 1980.  She stayed in their home and continued keeping it a home in which her family could gather.  Sunday evenings were full of people visiting her.  She still traveled a little bit to visit her two daughters who lived in Arizona.  When she was there she pitched in and helped with many project—wedding plans, high school homecoming dance dresses, and canning.

Life had lost its light with her eternal companion gone.  The years rolled on without much difference in them or in the long days and lonesome nights.  Della and Dean stopped by regularly to see how she was and worried about her weight loss.  One of Dean and Della’s daughters would stay at night so she would have someone there in case of a need.  They also helped fix breakfast and eat with her in the mornings.  Then the family found a gem by the name of Joy.  Joy became a live-in companion to Lucille, tenderly and lovingly caring for her.  She soon became the information center for the whole family and she got to know the family almost better than the children, grandchildren and great grandchildren did.  Lucille and Joy lived together in the big house many years and the family would go in to visit and give encouragement and love to both of them.

Lucille got so feeble that she finally needed to go to nursing facility.  The family that was close to her home gathered together to help with the move and she went with dignity to the Orem Care Center and later to the one in American Fork.  Here she received visits from family and friends.  She ate better and seemed to thrive but she still was lonesome and she would have rather be at home with Joy, but Joy had re-married and was no longer available.  She lost her desire to crochet and to read.  After all Calvin wasn’t out there fishing, anymore.

Lucille died on the 15th of December 2001 with all her children there except Mary Jean.  At the time of her death the children, except Glen, had gone to eat and she said good-bye to him and raised her arm up to someone and moved on.  Though sad for the family, she had been alone for twenty years and wanted so bad to join her sweetheart, Calvin, that all felt her happiness at the ending this separation.  She left behind a wonderful posterity of 8 children and their mates, 57 grandchildren, 147 great-grandchildren, and 1 great-great grandchild.

(from the files of Mary Jean Caldwell)

Henson Walker

Printed from the LDS Collectors Library: Early LDS Membership Data
Page 31

In 1841 Henson began the ecclesiastical duties of a life of devotion to the work of God. In the year that followed, he with his father-in-law, traveled from New York (how about just from Michigan) to Michigan (how about to New York) and thence to Illinois by team. While here they visited the city of Nauvoo, where they first met the Prophet Joseph. About this time he was ordained to the office of a Seventy by Joseph Young. In the early spring of 1843 the happiness of their sunny Salem home was increased by the arrival of their first child, a boy. But when the warm summer days came his wife sickened and died, leaving her bereaved husband to care for the babe, then only five months old. Henson then moved to the home of father-in-law, where the child was tenderly cared for. While living with the Bouk family, he became well acquainted with the Prophet Joseph Smith and stood guard for him at different times, when his life was in danger. The trials and sufferings of the Prophet were then at their height. When the Prophet was kidnapped, near Dixon, Ill., by Joseph H. Reynolds and Harmon T. Wilson, in June 1843, Henson was called with others to rescue him. They rode night and day until they overtook him. On their return they rode along by the carriage that contained the Prophet and the officers. One of the officers put his head out of the carriage and seeing more than a hundred people riding along, he said, “We would never have come after the Prophet, if we had known he had so many friends.” Henson was a member of the Nauvoo Legion and enjoyed their drill very much, but more than all else in the world he enjoyed standing in the square listening to the inspired commanding tones of that humble young Prophet, Joseph Smith. He was always happy when in company with him and was more than willing to render him all possible aid. He was with the Legion at the old frame house, near the Mansion, June 18, 1844 when the Prophet unsheathed his sword for the last time. When Joseph left Nauvoo for Carthage, Henson was very anxious to see an armed escort go with him, because he was pledged to support him. In a dream he was told that Joseph and Hyrum were all right, that they were beyond the reach of the mob. And when the next news came, they were truly beyond the reach of all the mobs. Henson was present at the time that Sidney Rigdon set forth his claims to the presidency. He also witnessed the mantle of Joseph resting upon Brigham Young and was fully convinced that he was the future Prophet of God. He now commenced work on the Nauvoo Temple, remaining at work until it was completed for endowments and baptisms for the dead. He married Elizabeth Foutz. A few days after the celebration of this happy event, his little child, now three years old, was accidentally drowned. In May 1846, he started west with Elder Cutler’s company and crossed the Missouri River. He returned to assist in suppressing the mob.

Henson was the first bishop and the first mayor of Pleasant Grove, Utah. He was a veteran of the Indian wars.

Joseph Daniel Davis

By Zola Walker Gogarty

Joseph Daniel Davis was born 24 December 1822 in Bewdley, Worcester, England, the son of Thomas Davis and Elizabeth Green. Joseph Davis was the youngest child of a family of six.  The other brothers and sisters were: Henry born 4 September 1814, Jane born 12 November 1815, Eliza born 1 April 1816, John born 30 January 1819 and Susanna born 5 March 1821.

He lived for a short time before leaving England at Shropshire Bridge North.  He arrived here 6 October 1853, having sailed on the ship “Ellen Maria”.

Joseph spent most of his life in Pleasant Grove, Utah.

President Brigham Young sealed both Harriet Showell and Ellen Kendall to him in the Endowment House on 31 August 1857 at 10:35 a.m.  Henson Walker and D. O. Calder witnessed the sealings.

It seems likely that Ellen had been married previously and Kendall was her maiden name.

Joseph was engaged in farming all of his life.

The 1860 United States Census lists:

Call #F, Utah 1B State of Utah, County of Utah,

Page 362 #3132 Joseph Davis, age 37, male, farmer, value 200/100, born: England, residence: Battle Creek

Ellen Davis, age 38, female, birthplace: England

Mara, age 16, male, birthplace: England

Franklin C., age 13, male, birthplace: England

Page 364, Harriet Davis, age 36, female, farmer, birthplace, United Kingdom, resident: Battle Creek

Joseph F. Davis, age 2, male Birthplace: Utah

John E. Davis, age 10/12 male, Birthplace: Utah

An obituary from the Deseret News on 12 October 1865:

Died in Pleasant Grove, Utah 7 September 1865, Joseph Daniel Davis from Worchestershire, England, age 41 years, 8 months and 4 days.  He was the first man buried in the Pleasant Grove Cemetery, Pleasant Grove Utah.

He was in the Bishopric in Pleasant Grove and a member of the 1st Quorum of the Seventies.


Further research has shown the Thomas Davis family had more children, but I would question a lot of them unless it is a combined family of the father’s children and mother’s children.  The mother was christened in 1780 in Rock and the father in1778, same place.  Joseph’s mother would have been 42 when he was born.  She was 34 when Henry was born.  I even question these children’s dates of the younger ones as the dates just don’t add up.

If he sailed and arrived in Utah in 1853 he was 30 years old at that time.  Because he died in 1865, he lived here a very short time—12 years. 

His other wife, Ellen, was married before and her children were born in England.  Her full name was Ellen Edmondson Kendall Banks.  John Banks being her previous husband and the father of her children.  She was older than Joseph Davis.

This is just a starting point for research.  So much to correct and prove here and part of it I would blame on the automatic match and merge.

(from the files of Mary Jean Caldwell)

John and Hannah Sutton Smith


By Charlotte Wright Harris in 1929

John Smith was born on the 4th day of August 1795, in Winwick, Huntingtonshire, England.  He attended the parish school in his youth.  He followed the occupation of farming and stock raising and was a devout Methodist.

About 1819 he was married to Hannah Sutton.  They had nine children as follows: Robert, Ann, Jane, James, Hannah Sarah, Charlotte, Harriet and John.

Ann married Mr. Birdsall.

Jane married Mr. James Skinner

Hannah married Mr. Thomas Woolley

*Sarah married Mr. Thomas Cobbley

*Charlotte married Mr. John Wright

Harriet married Mr. Reuben Harrison

Robert died while young

James was killed in the Crimean War in Russia about 1854

John died in Utah from Cancer

John had made a trip to a Salt Lake City hospital in company with Joseph Foutz, who died in his wagon very suddenly from hemorrhage and was buried in Salt Lake City.

John and Hannah joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1854.

In February 1855 they and their son John, a daughter, and their married daughter and son-in-law, Thomas and Hannah Woolley, left Liverpool on the ship “Mary Ann Sidous” with 430 saints on board, bound for American.  After nine weeks on the ocean they arrived in America.

Utah was their destination, but for lack of means they remained Philadelphia to get employment and the Woolley’s continued on their journey to Utah.

In 1860 John Woolley, father of Thomas and his family came from England and joined the Smiths in Chester County, Pennsylvania, as he was too ill to go on to Utah.  In the spring of 1861 these two families made their way to Florence, Nebraska, where they were met by Thomas Woolley, who had come with the Church teams from Utah to meet the immigrants.  He loaded them all eight in his wagon and brought them to Utah free of charge, but he was later reimbursed by John Smith for his family.  They traveled in company with the Church teams and arrived in Pleasant Grove, Utah in the fall.  Thomas brought a stove with him, which he traded to Joseph Wadley for a lot next to the Mayhew lot, where they made their home.

John Smith died on 16th October 1862 and was buried in Pleasant Grove, Utah.

After her husband’s death Hannah Smith adapted herself to the crude condition of the new country and pioneering life and worked for her maintenance.  Brother Robert Thorne states that one year while working on the grain thrasher they ran through the machine her gleanings from the harvest fields that season and it made forty bushels of wheat.  She died on 15th June 1868 and was buried next to her husband in the Pleasant Grove Cemetery.

* Direct Line

MY NOTE:  My dad always said that John Wright married Caralotta and he teased Grandma about it for some reason.

(from the files of Mary Jean Caldwell)

John and Charlotte Smith Wright


by Emily Wright Tyler

John Wright, son of William Wright and Catherine Hare, was born 8 October 1832 in Thorney, Cambridgeshire, England.  During his youth, whenever possible, John attended school.  He was required to pay two pence each week as tuition.  If the parents could not raise that amount the child would have to miss school that week.  John first worked long hours on farms, and at the age of fourteen he became an apprentice to learn the mason trade.  Always after he was able to hire out as a mason.  On 26 October 1850 he married Charlotte Smith.

Charlotte Smith was born 20 March 1830 in the town of Winwick, Huntingshire, England.  She was the daughter of John Smith and Hannah Sutton.  Charlotte grew up in the Methodist Church.

After she and John were married they rented a small house and John worked as a mason.  The first two children born to them died as small children.  William was born in 1851 and died in 1852.  Jane was born in 1853 and died at the age of three.

John and his wife, Charlotte, were baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints on 5 February 1854 by Elder Moses McHarms and were confirmed the same day by Elder John Richmond.

The next child that was born to them was a son and they named him Hyrum Isaac.  These three children were born in Thorney, Cambridgeshire.  When Hyrum was a year old, John moved his family to Bolingbroke in Lincolnshire to secure work in a cotton factory.  A son, John, Jr. and a daughter Sarah Ann, were born to them while they lived here.

These cotton factories were dependent upon cotton from America. Which was raised in the southern states.  At this time the Civil War was raging between the northern and southern states of America.  In 1862 the northern forces completely blockaded the southern ports, not allowing any cotton to be sent to England.  This brought about what was called “the Cotton Famine” in England.  The result was closed factories.

During the following winter months there was a lack of food and clothing in the area.   Much suffering and hardship resulted.  As soon as the necessary arrangements could be made, John moved his family to Liverpool, in 1863.

John and Charlotte’s greatest desire was to take their family to America and on to Utah, the headquarters of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  charlotte’s parents, John and Hannah Sutton Smith had sailed from Liverpool for America several years before and were well established in Utah.  Charlotte longed to join them.

Through the Perpetual Immigration Fund, their journey began early in 1866.  John, thirty five years old; Charlotte, thirty-six; Hyrum, ten; John, Jr., seven, and Sarah Ann, not yet three; left Liverpool and sailed on the ship Arkright.  After seven weeks and five days on the ocean they arrived in New York.  They traveled by railroad to Omaha, Nebraska.  The company of Saints remained at Omaha three days to prepare for the journey overland by ox team.

While in Omaha, Sarah Ann died.  Sarah Ann had been sick since she had come down with the measles while on the ocean.  Charlotte sat in the shelter of some trees and held the dead child in her arms until morning, when she was buried in a board coffin, that had hurriedly been made.  There were many graves there and along the route across the plains, graves of those who could not stand the hardships of the journey.

The next morning the family left Omaha to travel west in the Andrew H. Scott company.  They arrived in Salt Lake City on 8 October 1866.  They continued their journey southward to Pleasant Grove, where Charlotte’s mother lived.

Andrew Jensen, later assistant Church Historian (1917) crossed the plains in Captain Scott’s train.  The following account of the journey is culled from Brother Jensen’s journal:

Thursday, August 9 (1866).  “We broke camp at 8 o’clock a.m. and traveled till noon.  Then we stopped about four hours, during which time provisions were distributed to the passengers.  The rations consisted of 1 ½ pounds of flour and one pound of bacon per day for each adult, besides sugar, molasses, coffee, dried fruit, etc., all of which we were to cook and prepare to suit our respective tastes.

“Some of us found the baking of bread and the cooking of meals in the open air a very difficult task, but after a few day’s experience we mastered the situation quite satisfactorily.  The life on the plains and our daily travel soon became quite natural and pleasant to those of us who were young.  To the older members of the company and to such as had large families of children, the experience was a hard one indeed.

“Our general daily routine was something like the following: We generally broke camp at 8 o’clock in the morning to travel from fifteen to twenty miles a day.  As a rule, we stopped about two hours at noon to rest and feed ourselves and animals.  The task of walking as much as possible was enjoined upon ever young and able bodied person.  Only the old and weak were permitted to ride to any great extent.  Of course, I was numbered among those who walker nearly all the way  and I rather enjoyed it.

“When camping we had our busiest time.  First, we pitched our tents and gathered fuel and fetched water.  Then we made fires, baked bread and cooked food, and finally ate our meals around our campfires on the grass.  It was indeed a new life to lead but we soon got used to it and acted our different parts tolerably well, though we often found our energies taxed to the utmost.

“Fuel was frequently a scarce article and we resorted to the use of cattle chips in such cases.  They served as a very good substitute and when we got use to them we never complained, if we could only find enough of them.

“Often we cooked our meals when the rain poured down in torrents and drenched us to the skin and put out our fires.  Other times the wind blew so hard that our tents fell and our food became spiced with sand.  We looked upon these things as unavoidable difficulties and bore them without murmur or fault finding.

“In making our camps, the usual Mormon method of forming two half-circles with the wagons was observed, so that a corral was made into which oxen could be driven to be caught and yoked anew.  Our tents were pitched outside the enclosure, each tent opposite the wagon to which it belonged.  Regular night watch was taken in turn by immigrating brethren.  We traveled today about twenty-two miles and encamped about 6:00 p.m.

“Saturday, August 18th.  We broke our encampment at 7 a.m. and traveled six miles, which brought us to Fort Kearney.  This fort is situated on a broad plain about a mile from the Platte River.  About two miles west of the fort is a trading post, where we took in some provisions, which Captain Scott’s company had left there on their journey out.

Monday, August 20th.  We traveled about twenty miles and crossed Plum Creek.  This evening one of the brethren who had traveled with the mule train died, and during the day two died in our own company.  As they were English, I did not learn their names; yet it cast a gloom over us all, and when we witnessed their earthly remains deposited in mother earth in the wilderness we all wept or felt like weeping, for the thought of burying dear ones in this manner, when friends and relatives must immediately hasten away, without hopes of ever visiting the resting places of their dead again, was sad and trying indeed.

“Yes, there thy rest, where the wild Indians sing their war songs and where the buffalo and other wild animals roam at large; but their graves will be found when Gabriel sounds his trump in the morning of the first resurrection.  These departed ones laid down their bodies as they were marching towards Zion.  The Lord called them home before they reached their destination; they were not permitted to see Zion in the flesh; but they shall receive glory and rejoice hereafter; they died while endeavoring to obey God and keep his commandments and blessed are they who died in the Lord.

“These were the feelings of us survivors, who buried our brethren and sisters in the wilderness.  Those who died today were only the beginning of the mortality in our company, for I believe nearly thirty of our number died before we reached Great Salt Lake City.

“Friday, August 24th.  We traveled about twenty miles in the forenoon and camped for noon near the river, close to an Indian camp.  About one hundred Indians were encamped here and some of their tents were large and comfortable.

“These were the first Indians we had seen on our journey, and after we had subdued our fear and timidity they became the object of our greatest attention and curiosity and as they were a friendly band, a number of them soon appeared in our camp.  Some of the young warriors entertained us by showing us their skill as marksmen with their arrows.  Most of them were scantily clad and some of the young boys were entirely naked, a feature which was rather shocking to us people from the North, who had never seen anything like it before.  Some of them who made themselves more free with us than the rest partook of our food and seemed to be particularly fond of our bread and pancakes.

“Tuesday, September 4th.  We saw a number of Indians who appeared to be hostile and bent on mischief.  In the afternoon we crossed Laramie River and encamped for the night about a mile from Fort Laramie.  Fort Laramie is about midway between the Missouri River and Great Salt Lake Valley and the most important military post on the road.

“Wednesday, September 12th.  We reached Platte Bridge, near which there is quite a trading village.  The few people who constituted the inhabitants of Platte Bridge Village were of the rough western type, and not much like Christians.

“At this point our train took in a supply of provisions which the train had left when it journeyed east, but thirty-eight head of cattle which had been left here at the same time, for the purpose of strengthening the ox force on the return journey were lost, most likely stolen.

“Saturday, September 15th.  We traveled about fifteen miles and passed Devil’s Gate in the forenoon.  It rained briskly and continued all night.  Besides the rain, we were annoyed all night by the howling of wolves, which approached our camp in large packs.

“Devil’s Gate station was established by some mountaineers many years ago and is especially known for the events of 1856, when a terrific snowstorm overtook some of our hand-cart immigrants.

“Wednesday, September 19th. When we awoke this morning the ground was covered with about six inches of snow and it continued to snow all forenoon.  It was cold indeed and we all suffered in consequence severely.  What added to our discomfort was the scarcity of fuel.  There was no timber near and the snow covered the sagebrush and everything that could burn.

“The snow continued all forenoon and we made no attempt to move.  It was truly the coldest and most unpleasant day on the whole journey.  Toward noon, the teamsters succeeded, after much labor, to get the hungry, half-frozen oxen hitched up to the wagons, and we traveled a few miles.  But as the snow was deep and more kept falling, we only made very slow headway and soon found it necessary to form as encampment in a snug little valley.  This is a cold country, the altitude being high and the country very windy.

“Monday, September 24th.  Traveled about twenty miles and reached the Green River.  Camped about sundown near the east bank of the river.

“Sunday, September 30th.  Made an early start and traveled fourteen miles; encamped for the night in a beautiful place near Fort Bridger.  We are now 112 miles from the Great Salt Lake City.

“Tuesday, October 2nd.  Crossed Bear River; traveled fifteen miles and encamped for the night in a beautiful valley.

“Wednesday, October 5th.  Passed through the little settlement of Coalville.  Day’s journey, twenty miles.

“Sunday, October 7th.  Made an early start and passed over the summit into Parley’s Canyon.  We traveled slowly down through Parley’s Canyon, passed Hardy’s Ranch, and reached the mouth of the canyon late in the afternoon.  Climbing a hill on the right, I obtained my first view of Great Salt Lake City.  it appeared grand and beautiful, as it nestled in the full blaze of the afternoon sun.  with my companions I almost shouted with joy at the realization of our fondest heart’s desire.  As long as I can remember I had prayed and hoped for this opportunity.  Now at last, the city lay there, exposed to our  gaze.  Our dreams were about to be realized, in entering the chief city of the Saints—the home of Prophets and Apostles.  After getting out of the mountain pass we traveled through the Sugar House Ward, crossed the State Road and encamped for the night on the Church Farm.

“Monday, October 8th.  We traveled about four miles and arrive in Great Salt Lake City.  the train went into the Tithing Yard, where everything was unloaded, and then left again taking along only the immigrants expected to locate in Utah County, whence nearly all the wagons or teams had come.

“Our family which had not decided what part of the territory to locate in, remained in Great Salt Lake City, that is, in the Tithing Yard.  Consequently, we said good-bye to many of our fellow travelers, with whom we had crossed the plains and mountains.  They scattered to different parts of the territory, where they had friends and relatives.  We, who remained in the Tithing Yard temporarily were well treated and fed at the expense of the church.  We slept under sheds.”

We are grateful to have these excerpts from Andrew Jensen’s dairy, for we know that John Wright and his wife, Charlotte, and sons, Hyrum and John experienced the things written here, including the great thrill of arriving in Great Salt Lake Valley.

Hyrum and Andrew Jensen remained lifelong friends.  Andrew Jensen was often spoken of in our home.  Hyrum always enjoyed visiting with Brother Jensen, which was usually at conference time.

The Desert News notices the arrival of Captain Andrew H. Scott’s train into Great Salt Lake City from the Missouri River with a company of immigrants, as follows:

“TRAIN IN—Captain A. H. Scott’s train of forty nine wagons and about

three hundred passengers got in on Monday morning, the cattle of the

company looking well and the passengers as a general thing in good health, although a few were sick.  This company of people is reported as one of

the finest that has got in for a long tine.  They are mostly from Norway,

in Europe, from a highly respectable class of society and have a fine choir

of twenty-five voices.”

Two days later, John and Charlotte and their two sons, Hyrum and John, Jr.

arrived in Pleasant Grove, Utah.  Charlotte was overjoyed to again see her mother and to have her mother see her two fine sons.  There was happiness and also sorrow because of the death of Charlotte’s father, who had died on the 16 October 1862, before Charlotte could get to Utah.

The Wright’s first home in Utah was a one-room dugout with a willow and dirt

roof.  Later they moved to a one-room log cabin.

John worked in a sawmill up in American Fork Canyon.  He also sold lumber and

logs to the settlers, hauling them from the canyon with a span of mules.

In 1871 they moved to Lindon, bought a farm and here made a permanent home.  At first they lived in a dugout or half cellar, but soon John built an adobe and rock house.  He was a good mason and he hauled sand and clay, built molds, and made his own adobes.  No mansion was more homey or more appreciated.

Three more children were born to this family: James Thomas, Harriet Charlotte, and Catherine Latisha.  They also cared for a granddaughter, Charlotte Wright Harris, whose mother (Harriet Elizabeth Lords, wife of John Wright, Jr.) had died soon after Charlotte was born.

They joined the United Order.  This was an organization in which all property was held in common as a community family.  It was later found to be impractical and discontinued.

John was ordained a High Priest in 1891 by Bishop James Cobbley of the Lindon Ward.  He was a progressive and successful farmer.

John and Charlotte lived together for forty-three years.  They were the parents of nine children, five living to maturity.  On 9 May 1893 John died, at the age of sixty-two.  Three years later Charlotte followed him in death, on 25 September 1896.  They are buried side-by-side in the Pleasant Grove City Cemetery.

May Bezzant Harris (Charlotte’s granddaughter) said of Grandmother Wright: “She was a very industrious woman.  After churning all morning she would walk to American Fork with her butter and eggs to trade for groceries.  She walked along the railroad tracks.  She always had peppermint candy for her grandchildren as they ran to meet her.  She was a pleasant person and very beloved.”

May also said of her grandfather, John:  “He was pleasant and everyone loved him.  The day he took sick he came over to his daughter Harriet’s after taking his cows to the pasture.  He asked me for a drink of water.  He went home ill and never got out of bed again.  He was noted for having delicious apples, beautiful flowers and was very industrious.

(from the files of Mary Jean Caldwell)

Hyrum Isaac Wright


by daughter Emily Tyler (using  Don Wrights writings)

It was spring in Bolingbrook, Lincolnshire, England, when on 26th of March 1856 a stalwart English mother, Charlotte Smith Wright, nestled her newborn son by her side.  John Wright beamed with pride a he looked at his new son.

This was not the first child to be born to Charlotte and John.  Two preceded him, William and Hannah, but both died as very small children.  The joyful couple were full of hope that this son would grow to manhood and perpetuate the name they bore.

It was with happy hearts that they took their baby to the Latter-day Saint Church, which they had joined less than two years before and there hear the elders promise the child a long life and give him the name of Hyrum Isaac Wright.  But even their fondest dreams probably did not foresee the four score years that their son would live, no the number of descendants he would leave to carry on, for on the one hundredth anniversary of his birth he had become a family of 230 people.

It was a humble home in which he grew.  The gospel of Jesus Christ was the most important thing in the lives of his parents, John and Charlotte. They had been baptized into the Church in February 1854 by Elder Mosses McHarms and confirmed the same day by Elder Joseph B. Richmond.

There was love present in the home, so baby Hyrum grew strong in body, mind, and spirit.  Nor was he lonely, for three years later little brother John came to keep him company.  Later a sister, Sarah Ann, was born.

John Wright wanted to take his family to Zion in the mountains of the western United States, where they could worship God in a way they knew was right.  To accomplish this they moved To Lancashire in 1860.  John went to work in a cotton factory.  He worked there until the cotton famine.  Factories had to shut there doors because of the lack of cotton resulting from the Civil War between the northern and southern states of America.  England depended upon the southern states for their cotton.  In 1862 the union forces completely blockaded the Southern ports and they were unable to sent cotton to England.

With no available work in Lancashire, John moved his family to Liverpool, where he established a temporary home for his small family.  John was a brick mason by trade and he worked in this trade in Liverpool.  Hyrum, now about nine years old, worked with his father as an apprentice.  Although Hyrum worked as a brick mason only for a short time, he was always after skilled in laying bricks as the need arose.

The joy of this faithful Father and Mother was unbounded when with their three children they boarded the ship Arkright, bound for America, in June 1866.  The missionaries helped make this possible for them through the Perpetual Emigration Fund.

After about four weeks out to sea an epidemic of measles broke out among the children.  Hyrum and John recovered from their measles.  Not so with little Sarah Ann.  With each passing day she became worse.  Huge sharks, with open mouths followed the ship, waiting for their prey as one little body after another was prepared for burial at sea.  Mother Charlotte pleaded with God to let her child live, if only to be laid away in Mother Earth.  This prayer was answered, and Sarah Ann remained with them for a time.

After seven weeks and five days on the water, they landed in New York and from there traveled by railroad to Omaha, Nebraska.  The company of Saints remained in Omaha three days to prepare for the journey overland by ox team.

While in Omaha, Sarah Ann died.  The mother sat in the shelter of some trees and held the dead child in her arms until morning.  A sister, Miss Kettle (afterward Mrs. John Peters), made some burial clothing, a board coffin was made, and the three year old girl was buried.

The next morning the sad family left Omaha and traveled by ox team across the plains.  Hyrum, then ten years old, walked most of the way.  They traveled in Andrew H. Scott’s company.  Later they were transferred to John Haw’s company.

On 8 October 1866 they arrived in Great Salt Lake City.  this made Hyrum a Utah pioneer.  After a brief rest they continued their journey southward to Pleasant Grove, where Hyrum’s grandmother, Hannah Sutton Smith lived.

During the winter, Hyrum attended school for a short time.  In the summer he took care of a large herd of cows for the community.  He would gather them up in the morning and take them out to the foothills and then return them in the evening.  While living in Pleasant Grove, Hyrum’s other two sisters, Harriet and Latisha, and a brother James, were born.

In 1871 Hyrum’s father moved his family a few miles south to a farm in Lindon.  John built a new adobe house for his family.  He was a good mason and hauled sand and clay, built molds, and made his own adobes.

When Hyrum was fifteen, he worked in the canyons cutting timber for sawmills.  The family joined the United Order putting all they had into the common storehouse, with charitable and unselfish hearts.  The purpose of the order was for families to gather and store together, thus mingling as one large family.  As time went on, this plan proved unsatisfactory and the idea was abandoned in 1879.

Hyrum was baptized into the Church on 12 May 1866 by his Uncle Thomas Wooley.  He was ordained a priest in 1874 and a high priest in 1905.  His religion always meant much to him and he was still active as a missionary to do temple work until three years before his death.

At the age of twenty, Hyrum married Annie Elizabeth Harper, the daughter of Benjamin and Elizabeth Harper.  To this couple were born ten children, eight sons and two daughters.  Hyrum’s wife, Annie, died May 13, 1902.  On June 10, 1903 he married Mary Jane Bezzant, the daughter of Matthew and Maria Ann Cook Bezzant.  Six children—four boys and two girls—were added to this family through this union, making a total of sixteen branches in the family tree.  As Jacob of old, Hyrum was blessed with twelve sons and he had the added blessing of four daughters.

The two-story red-brick home he built for his family in 1900 still stands at the bend of the road, one mile west of the foot of Lindon Hill—778 West Lakeview Drive, Lindon, Utah.  The farm on which he built this home was about sixty acres.  He also had a dairy herd of considerable size.

It was here on his farm that Hyrum started the Lindon Nursery.  He excelled in budding and grafting desirable fruit on poor but strong roots.  Through his efforts in the nursery business, he imported many new varieties of fruits and many varieties of flowers.  He loved to try something new and different.  He was always a great lover o flowers and took much joy in working in them.  In later years his reputation as a gardener spread and his flowers were widely known.  Prizes at flower shows and fairs came to him.

He landscaped the Third Ward church grounds in Pleasant Grove and he took special pride in caring for these grounds.  Under his care they became one of the show places of the city.  Also, the grounds of his home were always very beautiful.  He was never happier than when working with flowers.

In his youth and early manhood, Hyrum was a large man with a full, long, sandy brown beard, but the years of hard work took their toll on his size.  As his youngest daughter, I remember my father in his declining years as a rather small, white-haired man with a white mustache.  He became in later years a typical grandfather type man—small, quiet, reserved, and lovable.

Throughout the years, Father had been a progressive and successful farmer.  In his younger days he would haul his fruits and vegetables by horse and wagon to the Salt Lake farmer’s market.  This trip to Salt Lake would take two days each way.  He would stop overnight at the Halfway House.  In later years, as we made this trip by automobile in a few hours, Father would point out the Halfway House, where he used to stay and marvel at the great changes taking place.

Perhaps Father was more prosperous than those who lived around us, or perhaps it was his desire to try the new, but we had the first Edison phonograph around.  It played cylinder records and had a large horn like the one in the advertisement for a Victrola, where the dog sits and listens to his master’s voice.  It had to be wound up with a crank to make it play.  People came from all around to listen to it or to the player piano.  The piano had peddles and we had to pump to make the bellows go to turn the rolls of music.

Father loved to have company and he loved music.  He played a bass horn in the first band organized in the area.  This horn is now in the Pioneer building in Pleasant Grove.

About 1914 Father purchased a seven-passenger Studebaker car.  In addition to the front and back seat, it had two jump seats which pulled out from under the back seat.  As a young child I always sat on the jump seat.

I can remember clearly riding along Lindon roads and people coming out of their houses to watch something so new and unusual as an automobile.  One time we traveled to Salt Lake City in the Studebaker with my brother, Cliff, driving.  He accelerated to a speed of twenty-five miles an hour.  We talked about this for many days.

In the winter the Studebaker was put into a wooden garage.  The wheels were jacked up and logs were placed under the axles to keep the tires off the ground.  The battery was taken out and put in the cellar so it would not freeze.  The oil and water were drained out of the car and there it sat until spring.

Somewhere around 1915 Father sold the west end of his property to a sugar beet company for the construction of a beet slicer.  In order for electricity to reach the slicer, power lines had to cross Father’s farm.  An agreement was reached with the sugar company that if Father would allow the poles to be put on his farm, the company would bring electricity to his home.  Because of this agreement we had electricity long before we otherwise would have.

Father was a member of the irrigation water board for many years.  He served as president of the board until we moved to Pleasant Grove.

About 1918 there was a bad epidemic of influenza.  Many people died from it.  All of us had the influenza except Father.  He cared for the sick.  He never wore a gauze mask like the others did.  He insisted that his mustache  kept out germs out. he was an attentive and considerate nurse and cared for sick members of the family with a tenderness usually reserved for women.  Mustang Liniment was his cure for most ailments.

As he grew older, working a large farm became a hardship for him.  In 1919 he sold his farm in Lindon and moved to a lovely home in Pleasant Grove.

It may seem strange that a father who had so little schooling and a mother who had very little more should be concerned with the education of their children.  Yet all of Mother’s children graduated from high school and received a college education.

All was not pleasure in life for Father.  He mourned at the death of his first wife, six of his children, his father and mother, and all his brothers and sisters, except one.

I don’t recall Father ever being sick except in his final illness.  In 1936 Father had to give up active work.  His heart just seemed to wear out and he became bedfast.

An interesting incident tells something of the character of this man.  The doctor told Father he should get some brandy and have a toddy once or twice a day as a stimulant for his heart and to help him sleep.  Father refused to do this.  He said he had never use alcohol and he wasn’t about to start now.

On the first day of January 1947 about fifteen minutes past midnight his spirit left his body and he passed on to meet his loved ones who had gone on before.  Three days later his funeral services were held in the Pleasant Grove Tabernacle, with a profusion of the flowers he so loved in life.

ADDENDUM;   by his son Donald Wright

As a young man, father worked cutting logs at a sawmill at Bear Flats (Mutual Dell).  Uncle Mark Bezzant, Mother’s brother, operated the mill.  Dad apparently learned to enjoy chopping wood here and was a good man with an ax all his life.

Father had a full beard down to his chest—like President Joseph F. Smith—when he was a young man.  My brother John said that one day he left home and went to Pleasant Grove.  When he returned his beard was gone.  All that was left was the moustache, which wore the rest of his life.  he told no one of his intentions.  John says when he came toward the house, the dog bit him—that’s what he said.

Father was a great family man.  He loved his children and was very close to his brothers and sisters.  Aunt Tish (Latisha Wright Long Hansen) lived in Salt Lake City and was not as available as the others.

Uncle John, Uncle Jim and Aunt Hattie (Harriet Wright Bezzant who married Mother’s brother Sam.) and Father all lived within a small area in Lindon.  Their relationship was very close.  It continued even after we moved a few miles away to Pleasant Grove.  Both of Father’s brothers died before he did, each as the result of an accident involving a horse.

When I was a youngster, each year or so we used to get all of Grandfather’s tribe together in a family reunion.  The ones I remember best were held in the old Lindon Hall, a frame building about one-half way up Lindon Hill on the main road.  They seemed the most gay times I can remember.

Uncle Jim used to sing for us “A little pig curled up his tail in the mud”.  And we danced, little folks and big folks, and we ate and ate.  Father loved the reunions and so did the rest of us.

The farm that Dad had in Lindon was a pretty good sized chunk of land for the days of horse power.  In all there were about sixty acres.  Some of it was meadow land and not cultivated.

Father had a dairy herd in Lindon.  Not the size of those served by milking machines today, but a good “handmilking-size” herd.  They were pastured on part of the farm.  They were milked twice a day.  This was what is known as one of the chores, along with feeding and caring for the pigs, horses, and chickens.  Farm life was more than romance when Dad farmed.

There was one chore Dad likes—caring for the flowers.  He had a “green thumb”.  I don’t recall Lindon, but I do Pleasant Grove, where his home was something of a show place.  There was green lawn all around the house to the east and the front of the house.  Further east there was an area of perennial flowers, peonies, roses, etc., and beyond that across the fence in the garden area were annuals.  His dahlias were prize winners at the flower shows and fairs.  He had beds of hyacinths, tulips, and other annuals.  Our Pleasant Grove home really was lovely.

He made trips to Salt Lake City from Lindon to sell his fruit at the farmer’s market.  He never hauled fruit from Pleasant Grove.  The peaches, prunes, apricots, raspberries, strawberries and blackberries as well as tomatoes were in demand locally.  People would come to our home to buy the produce knowing full well they would always get more than their money’s worth.  Later on people started to come from Salt Lake City for his fruit.  Neighbors would send their children over for ten cents worth of tomatoes and leave with nearly one-half bushel.

The Church bought the old high school building, and after some years it was remodeled to better suit the ward’s needs.  Father was involved in beautifying the grounds.  He planned and planted most of the grounds.  The grounds were a showplace and father was never happier.  When the remodeling was complete, Dad was hired as custodian.  It was quite a task for him as he was well into his seventies.  He continued with this as long as his health and strength would permit.

Father’s heart began to wear out and the last year of his life he was pretty much confined to the house.  During this last illness, Father was so ill that he was thought to be dying.  He went into a coma.  During the time of unconsciousness, he repeated several times the name of his youngest brother, Jim, who had been dead for a number of years.

He rallied and regained consciousness, he said that he had seen the other side of the veil and those of his family who had proceeded him in death.  He said he had been with Jim, and that now he was going to get better and go to church.  three days after we thought he was dying, Father sat up for Sunday dinner, and a week later he did go to church.  however it was a short reprieve and a few months later he again joined his loved ones beyond the veil.


(from the files of Mary Jean Caldwell)