Saturday, August 8, 2020



    Ann Hancock was born July 4, 1805 in Tunstal, Wolstanton, Stafforshire, England.  She was the daughter of John and Elizabth Houldcroft Hancock.  The Hncock family head the message of the Gospel of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  Her husband, Abraham Done passed away in May 1835 in Stockport, Cheshire, England.  They were the parents of: John, born January 28, 1826; James, born May 28, 1830; Abraham, born July 29, 1832 and died at age 1; and George, born March 18, 1834.
    Ann was baptized on January 26, 1852. Ann and her family were advised to immigrate to Zion.  It was decided that her to sons, James and George, would go first and left two years before other family members were able to follow.  Ann and her son, John and his wife and children would come as soon as possible after.
    Ann Hancock Done, her son, John, and his wife, Sarah Barker Done borrowed money for the Perpetual Immigration Company which enabled them to make the trip.  Ann, her son and his wife sailed along with John’s two children, Abraham and Elizabeth Anne on the ship, “The Samuel Curling.  The set sail on April 22, 1855.
    Set they set forth on their way to Zion from the Mormon Grove with the Milo Andurs Wagon Train Company on August 5, 1855 and arrived in Salt Lake City of October 24, 1855.  The trip across the plains was very difficult for the family.  John had never driven oxen before. His wife, Sarah walked most of the way with a baby in her arms.  One of their oxen got lost and was never recovered which created near tragedy for the family.
    The family first settled in Little Cottonwood which was located ten miles south of Salt Lake City.  It was a very difficult struggle since food was scarce and hard to get..  They later move to Payson.  Ann lived the rest of her life in Payson and died there on July, 28, 1871.  She was buried in the Payson City Cemetery.

Sunday, August 2, 2020




  John Boylston Fairbanks  was born 28 April 1817 in Sand Hill, Montgomery, New York  He was the son of Joseph Fairbanks IV and Mary Polly Brooks.   When John was nine years old he moved with his parents to New Jersey. 
    When he was 15 years old, he went to work as a clerk in a store.  The LDS missionaries visited Fort Mead where he worked.  He hears the gospel message.  Joseph, father of John Boylston, with other members of the Fairbanks family also heard and accepted the preaching of John Leach, a Morman missionary, and were baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on March 166, in  1843, Bergen County,  New  Jersey., John Boylston's mother was baptized in Feb 1844. 
    Sarah Van Wagmer was born July 11, 1822 in Pompton Plains, Bergen County, New Jersey.  She was the third daughter and youngest child of Halmagh J. and Mary Van Houten Van Wagoner.  They were both of Dutch descent.  Their ancestors came from Holland in the early 1600s.      The family converted ot Mormonism is 1843.
    The story goes that Sarah and friends saw John B. Fairbanks. walking down the road and Sarah turned to her companions and said, "that’s the man I'm going to marry".  That night they met at a cottage meeting, after which he escorted her home, thus beginning the romance which culminated their marriage, August 31,  1844. 
    The family formed a group to move to Nauvoo, and in two months they were ready.  arriving the November 1, 1845.  On  June 27. 1845,  their 1st child, John Joseph was born, but lived only a few hours. John B. was ordained into the 70th Quorum of 70's, on January 21, 1845.  During 1844-45,   John B. worked on the Temple and on the January 21, 1845 he and his wife were endowed and on the 23rd they were sealed for time and all eternity. 
    During the exodus from Nauvoo in 1846,  they crossed the Missippi River but didn't stay long, went onto Winter Quarters, preparing to move west.  While in Winter Quarters,  John lost his father in death and Sarah lost her mother.  Here also their 2nd child was born and named after John's sister Harriett.
        Shortly after  marriage John  and his Sarah and a group of relatives left to join the Saints in Nauvoo.   Their first child John Joseph was born and died 27 June 1845 in Nauvoo, Hancock,Illinois.  While they were in Nauvoo, he helped in building the Nauvoo Temple.
    His family traveled with the Saints to the Salt Lake Valley with the Jedediah M. Grant/Willard Snow Company departing on June 19,with 160 individuals in the company.  The family consisted of  John Boylston, age 20; his wife, Sarah VanWagoner, age 25;  Mary Jane age six; William Henry, age seven; Sarah’s mother, Polly Brooks Fairbanks, age 67;  John’s brother David age 37 and his wife, Susanna Fairbanks, age 27.   John’s daughter Harriet was just an infant.  She was born 27 November 1846 at Winter Quarters, Douglas, Nebraska.  
          John Boylston Fairbanks was a captain of ten and left a journal of their experiences as they came across the plains.  They were not the only company traveling west at that time.  There were probably 7-8 companies and lots of confusion and trials were experienced because of such amass exodus. 
    From his journal: “Tuesday,  June 22, 1847 they rolled westward up the Platte River to where the road touches the River again.  Parley P. Pratts Company started in front going double file. There was artillery on the right of Parley’s Company.  Elder Taylor’s Company was next in double file on the right of artillery.  Captain Grant’s Company was in the rear of Parleys in double file.  Captain Smoot’s Company was in the rear of Tailors in double file, the first 50 occupying the left and the second on the right hand of road.
          On June 26, their company was in the back of the companies, and it was very dusty.  About 11:00 the wind shifted and it helped a great deal.  On the 28 they were near a Pawnee Village which had been burned in the fall by the Indians.  It was now a missionary station.
          On  July 11, they were able to kill two or three buffalo calves from a herd of about 5,000.  The buffalo stampeded upsetting several wagons and scattering the cattle. After hunting for the animals, unable to find them; their loses amounted to 51 head, 40 work cattle and nine cows. By the 23 July they met a group of Sioux Indians, who were armed and made up in regular battle order with a flag for war or peace.  When they found the pioneers were friendly,they visited with the men, women, and children, trying to trade a few muskets.
          They reached Fort Laramie by August, 7 watered the animals and rested.  By the 9 August they were in a heavy rainstorm.  They had a little snow storm on the 17 August.  The feed for the animals was very poor and very little water. They reached the Saleratus Lakes by 27 August and took in what they wanted before rolling on six miles to the Sweetwater River.  It was a beautiful stream.  Several of the oxen died in this area,probably from the Saleratus Lakes.  They were at Independence Rock on the 29 August.
          Captain Grant had the company equalize their load so they could move forward as they reached the mountains.  From there they could see the Wind River Mountains were covered with snow.  President Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball met and spoke with the companies as they stopped on their way back to Winter Quarters.
        They crossed the Big Sandy and the Little Sandy on the 12 and 13 of September.  The feed was excellent.  By September 20, they were on Ham’s Fork.  It was very hot and dusty.  Two days later they were at Fort Bridger.  Sunday 3 October they repaired and rolled on down the canyon, turn to right after the last mountain, camped at the foot of the mountain and picked some service berries. They made it to the Great Salt Lake valley on October 4, 1847.”
          His father built a home in Salt Lake City and he served as a clerk of the First Ward.  Early in 1851 he moved his family to Payson,Utah, Utah Territory where he remained for the rest of his life.
          John and Sarah had eleven children.  John Joseph was born and died on 27 June 1845 in Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois.  Harriet was born 27 November 1846 in Winter Quarters, Douglas, Nebraska.    Henry was the first of their family to be born in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, Utah Territory.  The family then moved to Payson, Payson, Utah Territory. 
In June 1847 they were prepared to leave Winter Quarters, John B. was chosen captain of the 14th ten, of the 2nd fifty, of the 3rd hundred.  Willard Snow being the captain of the fifty and Jedediah M. Grant captain of the hundred.  Arriving in the Salt Lake valley Oct 6, 1847. 
    The first home of John Boylston and his wife Sarah was the wagon box they came across the plains in.  A piece of carpet hung at the front of the wagon for a door; at the rear was a bed, under which were the trunks; in front was a small stove, and a piece of carpet covered the floor.  One chair was the extent of their furniture, yet Sarah said it was the happiest winter she had ever experienced.
    On the 20th of Mar 1849 their 3rd child was born, Henry by name.  In 1851 he with others was asked by Brigham Young to go South to settle; and they went as far as what is now know as Payson.  Along the Peteetneet Creek, but because of the scarcity of water they moved three miles east to Pond Town where there was a large spring.  They made a dam across the ravine, and then took the water out onto the land, which secured good crops.  but because of trouble with the Indians, they moved again south to Payson which was then called Peteetneet, and here to was a fort.
Nathaniel was born 2 August 1851 in Payson, Utah, Utah Territory and died 6 August 1859 in Payson.  He had just turned eight.  Sarah Ann was born 22 April 1853 and died 10 August 1857; John B. was born 27 December 1855; Mary was born 18 February 1858; Alicia was born 6 April 1860; Lillie Maria was born 22 August 1862; Franklin was born 2 June 1865; and George A. was born 26 January 1869.

     John was a member of the city council in 1853-56.  On the 15 Feb 1862 he was set apart as Bishop of Payson.  He was a great friend to the Indians and they showed their appreciation by putting their arms around him and patting him on the back and shoulders.  When told of his death, the Indians shed tears. 
    While still a Bishop he was called to go to the Eastern States on a mission. returning 10 april 1870.  A year later 20 April 1871 he left for another mission, this time to Great Britain.  He returned home in charge of 510 saints, which sailed from Liverpool 3 Sep 1873.  Arriving in New York 27 sep 1873.  When he returned he was no longer Bishop.He died 14 May 1875 of Typhoid Pneumonia.  the attendance at his funeral held in the Payson Tabernacle, was the largest Payson had ever known.  He left his wife Sarah, eight children, four sons and four daughters.
          John  died May 14, 1875 at the age of 58 in Payson and was buried May 16, 1875 in Payson, Utah, Utah Territory.  Sarah Fairbanks died 8 February 1898 at the age of 75 in Payson and was buried May 14, 1875 in Payson, Utah, Utah Territory.  He is buried in the Payson City Cemetery

Thursday, July 30, 2020



    Elizabeth Humphry Dixon was born in Flamouth, Nova Scotia, March 29, 1778. She was the daughter of William and Jane Flintoff Humphry, early settlers of Flamouth. When her father died in 1795, Charles Dixon (1st), an old family friend happed in on one of his journeys to market. He advised Mrs. Humphry to remove her family of three sons and two daughters to Sackville, where he was engaged in a small way in merchandise, purchasing his goods and supplies, and marketing the surplus products of his farm at Halifax. He offered her a lot on his land situated on the main road through the village. Mrs. Humphry accepted promptly, and a house was erected on the property.
    In due time, the family moved in. Elizabeth's mother was evidently a capable woman as she commenced very soon to keep a Public House, as it was called, and her house was for many years sort of a headquarters where much of the semi-public or parish business was transacted. Mr. Dixon held his justice courts there until a brief period before his death.
    On October 13, 1799, Elizabeth became the wife of Charles Dixon II, a young widower, and the son of the Humphry's benefactor. His first wife was Rhoda Emerson, a daughter of one of the original grantees of Sackville. She died at the age of thirty. His marriage to Elizabeth took place very soon after the death of his first wife, and quite shocked the sense of propriety of Mr. Dixon's Methodist associates. It caused for a time some estrangement, but the offense, if any, was soon overlooked inasmuch as the bride was a Yorkshire Lass and the alliance was regarded with great favor. Doubtless they believed as most Yorkshire people do to the present day,  there is no one quite the equal of a good Yorkshireman.
    About the year of 1803, Mr. Dixon left for a visit to the United States with a neighbor, Timothy Richardson. Most of the journey was made on foot until they reached Ohio. There they had a boat constructed in which they pursued their journey down to New Orleans. From there, they took passage by sea to New York, where Mr. Dixon fell ill. Fortunately, his brother-in-law, George Bulber was in New York and finally located Mr. Dixon and Mr. Richardson, gave them such aid as they needed to get back to their home. The boat passage for home with Captain Burnham was to hold back father; for at Mount Desert they were detained by severe weather and lost considerable time. At length they reached home, and Elizabeth wept for joy at the sight of her husband, as she had received no word from him since his departure.
    After the destruction of Mr. Dixon's lumber mill by fire, he and his son-in-law entered into an arrangement to build ships for commerce with England. They built several, but due to the decline in prices to both ships and merchandise they ceased work, and two years later sold their ship business to other parties, and confined their energies to farming.
    One evening when Charles Dixon and his son Christopher were returning from a parish meeting, they passed two Mormon elders holding a street meeting. Christopher paused a moment to listen. He was very impressed and persuaded his father to return with him the next evening to hear them. He likewise was moved by their doctrine, and soon after Charles II, Elizabeth his wife, and their seven youngest children embraced the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints faith.
    The Dixon's from their early beginning had been people of religious nature. Charles Dixon I emigrated to Nova Scotia in 1772 at the age of 42. There was much religious and economic unrest in England at this time. Mr. Dixon owned the Hutton (paper Mills) at Hutton Rudby, and was active in public affairs. He and his family sailed from Liverpool on board the Duke of York, March 16, 1772 with 62 passengers aboard. In a letter to Charles Dixon II and his daughter Sara, he tells of conditions in England and reveals a progressive religious nature that in future years influenced the destiny of his children and their children in a religious way. Part of this letter is as follows.
    In 1837, Charles and Elizabeth Dixon and their seven youngest children moved to Kirtland, Ohio, feeling this was the only proper and safe course to pursue due to their religion which was so unpopular at that time. They left September 1, 1837 and traveled in covered wagons arriving in Kirtland  on October 14 where they purchased property and resumed their old occupation of farming.
    The following autumn, Charles Dixon II and his daughter Jane and youngest son started for Missouri. Soon after they crossed the Missouri River they met a large number of Mormons being driven by force from the state. Most of them were in a destitute condition. They returned with these people to Quincy Illinois where Mr. Dixon hired a house and remained all the winter. He liberally used his means in relieving the necessities of these poor suffering brethren. Charles Dixon II became an intimate friend of the Prophet Joseph Smith. He received a Patriarchal Blessing from the Prophet's Father in 1837 in the Kirtland Temple when the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was just seven years old. Joseph Smith, Sr., was the first Patriarch of the Church. The Dixon children were all baptized in a stream in Kirtland, Ohio. Christopher Dixon purchased Joseph Smith's home from his brother Hyrum, and lived there with his family until they set out for Utah.
    The Dixons without exception were devout followers of Joseph Smith, and on more than one occasion Charles and his son Christopher affirmed their belief by saying, "I would follow Joseph Smith to the ends of the earth." The news of the Prophet's death fell as a heavy blow to the family, and the consequent splitting of the church was confusing. It wasn't until the spring of 1854 that they finally made up their minds to go west. Charles Dixon II had entered his eighty-ninth year and Elizabeth her seventy-seventh, but despite their age the fact that Mr. Dixon was nearly blind, they sold their belongings in Ohio and set out for Salt Lake City. Alfred Dixon and Leonard Dixon went on to Sacramento. Edward Dixon another son of Ruth Dixon Ohara (Mrs. George O'hara) arrived in Utah August 9, 1859. They visited with their people then went on to Sacramento.
    Charles Dixon II, his wife Elizabeth Humphrey and Martha & Orrawell Simons arrived in Rock Island and halted for a few days while their party fitted teams for the journey across the plains. Here Charles Dixon fell from the steps of the hotel and broke his hip. His injuries proved fatal. He died 17 July 1854 in a covered wagon and was buried on the plains near Davenport, Iowa. He was born in Yorkshire, England January 1, 1766.
    Whether Charles Dixon II outstripped Charles I in purity of heart and holiness of life was for no man to judge, but the fact remains that the fact of his life was an attempt to join the people of the church of his choice, that he had given so much of his life to.
    Elizabeth continued the journey with her daughter and son-in-law, Orrawell Simons, and made her home with them until the arrival of her son Christopher, who did not arrive in Utah until October 1862. They all lived in an adobe house which they built at 340 West 4th North the fall of their arrival. It is located directly across the road from the spot where the first pioneers camped, and is situated far back from the road in the front of a large grove of willow and cottonwood trees. The grove for many years was used for town celebrations and enjoyed by the whole community. A small foundation still remains under a second growth of Box Elder trees. The history of the Adobe house built in 1862 appeared in the Deseret News, March 13, 1948. It has been remodeled and has been occupied by six generations of Elizabeth Humphry Dixon's descendants. Elizabeth died at the age of 87 years on July 17, 1864--ten years to the day after the death of her husband. When she was  advanced yearsburied, she was the oldest woman in the Payson City Cemetery. Besides yer lies the grave of a little Indian girl who helped her during her advanced years.
    The children of Charles II and Elizabeth Humphry Dixon are as follows:
John: Born Aug. 9, 1800;  Elizabeth: Born January 1, 1803; Sidney: Born Aug 9, 1805; Leonard: Born July 12, 1808;  Jane: Born October 13, 1810;  Ruth: Born August 4, 1813;  Christopher Flintoff; Born May 6, 1816;  Edward: Born August 17, 1818; Alfred: Born January 31, 1821; and
Mary: Born July 13, 1823.
    Elizabeth passed away on July 17, 1864 in Payson.  It was ten years to the day after the death of her husband Charles Dixon II.  When she passed,  she was the oldest woman  at 87 years of age.   at the time of her burial. in the Payson City Cemetary. Nearby is the grave of a little Indian girl who helped her in her advanced years.

Sunday, July 19, 2020


    Hyrum King Elmer was the seventh child and third son born to John and Sally (Polly) Peake Elmer on June 4, 1816 in Norwich, Orange County, Vermont.  Nothing more is known of his early years growing up in Vermont.
    Hyrum’s first marriage was to his cousin, Lucina Elmer.  To this couple were born two children.  Henry Elmer was born March 7, 1841 in Sand Prairie, Adams, Illinois.  Lucy Lodia Elmer was born July 3, 1843 in Lee County, Iowa.  Lucina Elmer died January 4, 1844, leaving the two young children in the care of an aunt, Hannah Child Elmer.  Hyrum’s mother, Sally Peake, had died about 1832 and is buried in Indiana.
    Hyrum was a river-runner. He would go up the river and cut logs, which were then bound together in a raft and floated down river to their destination. His father was a shingle maker. After his marriage to Mary she was often left alone while Hyrym rode the rafts down the Mississippi River to keep the logs floating.  She knew how dangerous this could be for more than one man had slipped between the logs to fade forever out of sight.
    The Mississippi River was frightening and many times when she was left alone, she would ppick up her babies and go to her father’s for the night.  It was said she would place Henry in the horse and the baby o a large stump.  She would get on the horse with Henry and then pick up the baby.
    Ont night she was alone with only a younger brother for companym she heard a prowler.  She realized the possibility they might be murdered.  Once again her prayers were answered, for when her young brother called of to the would-be intruder, his voice was so gruff and mature it frightened the prowler away..
    Hyrum grew up hearing and reading the Bible. He was ready when the missionaries came with the gospel in 1835 and was soon baptized, as was his family.  In 1835 Abram Butterfield, a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints paid a visit to the Elmer home.  Hyrum was baptized by Elder Butterfield and confirmed by Elder Hazen Eldrege.
    He lived in Vermont for 22 years and after his conversion, he went to Massachusetts to work to earn the money for his parents and family to join the saints. After two years, he went home, got his parents and left for Missouri .

    On June 9, 1845, eighteen months after the death of his first wife, Hyrum married sixteen year old, Mary Huffman, the daughter of James and Nancy Summers Huffman in Lee County, Iowa.  Mary was born April 16, 1829 in Columbia, Wood County, Ohio.   Mary took these two children of Hyrum to her heart and became a real mother to them.
    To this union were born twelve children, three sons and nine daughters as follows:
One unnamed son born in 1846 and died in infancy; Francis Marion Elmer, born November 11, 1847;  Cynthia Elmer, born May 13, 1850; Sally Elmer, born March 14, 1852; Mary Elizabeth Elmer, born June 7, 1854; Diana Elmer, born December 12, 1857; Tryphena Elmer, born April 5, 1860; Lovina Ursula Elmer, born December 1, 1862; Almira Jane Elmer, born April 18, 1865; Lucinda  Elmer, born September 20, 1867; Hyrum John Elmer, born April 1, 1871; Roxy Ann Elmer, born January 7, 1873.  The last seven of these children were born in Payson, Utah County, Utah.
    The Elmer family were in the midst of the wandering and persecutions of the Saints.  They eventually made the decision to come to the Valley of the Great Salt Lake.  They prepared to leave for their westward trek.  Their team consisted of one yoike of oxen and two yokes of cows. After making the necessary preparations, they departed Kanesville, Iowa June 28, 1852 in a company under the direction of Capt. Uriah Curtis.  Traveling in this same company were two of Hyrum’s brothers, William and Ira and their young families.  This company arrived in the Salt Lake Valley between September 29 and October 1, 1852.
    The rest of the family gradually made their way west. Upon their arrival they made their home near Bingham Canyon in Wight's Fort . Hyrum made shingles and ran Bishop Hunter 's cattle and dairy. In the spring of 1857 , Hyrum moved his family to Payson where they remained. He helped build up the community, where he was well liked and respected. Besides his own children, he and his wife took five children into their home to raise.
    Family records indicate that Hyrum King Elmer married twenty-one year old Margaret Huffman, sister to his wife, Mary, in 1852.  This marriage probably took place before their departure west.  Margaret died in 1854.
    The family spent their first year in Provo and then moved to  Whites Fort in 1853, where they made shingles from logs hauled from Bingham Canyon.  They also engaged in farming and raising livestock.
    In the spring of 1857, Hyrum moved his family to Payson, Utah County, Utah.  He and his son, Henry, remained at Whites Fort to continue working there for a few months.  Henry worked for Bishop Hunter who had charge of the church cattle, and operated a dairy near the fort.
In 1857 they moved to Payson, Utah where they acquired a good acreage of farm land.  Their first home was a log house with a mud roof, on the East bench or Hungry Slope as it was called.  They later built an adobe home which was one of the better homes in Payson at the time.
    Most of Hyrum’s family remained in Payson and helped to build up the community.  They passed through many trials and hardships pioneering the west.  Hyrum was well known for his thrift and industry and his kindly disposition.  Besides their own large family, Hyrum and Mary took five children into their home to raise and care for.
     Mary was a good motherly type woman and loved her family very much.  In her later years she loved to sit on one side of the heating stove in her rocker with her husband on the other side enjoying each other's companionship.
    Mary Huffman Elmer suffered a stroke in January 1900 and was ill for several months and passed away on December 10, 1902 at the age of 73..  Hyrum departed from this life on September 30, 1909 at the age of 93,  He passed away at his old home, owned then by his daughter, Mary McBeth.  He was survived by two sons, seven daughters, 76 grandchildren, 169 great-grandchildren and 3 great great-grandchildren.  Both Hyrum and Mary are buried in the Payson City Cemetery.

Thursday, July 9, 2020



    Alta Hancock was the second, of five children born to Solomon Hancock and Phoebe Adams.  She was born June 18, 1840 in Adams County, Illinois.  The Hancock and Adams families were hard working and enduring people.   They were among the first to embrace the Gospel after the Church was organized.
    Alta saw the Prophet Joseph Smith many times, as he was a frequent visitor at the home of her father Solomon Hancock.  Although, only four years of age at the time the Prophet Joseph was martyred, she never forgot his majestic bearing as well as the strength and power which accompanied his words.  She said “One felt on seeing and hearing him talk that he was indeed a Prophet of God.”  Alta with her father’s family was forced to leave their homes many times and make new ones. They were in all the attacked by mobs  and were driven along with the Saints of Missouri and who were in Nauvoo when the Prophet Joseph Smith and his brother Hyrum were so cruelly martyred at Carthage jail.  
    With a good Christian Mother like Phoebe and a firm staunch father, Solomon, we are not surprised at the wonderful woman Alta the daughter became.  One instance she often spoke of was when her father and mother along with their small children were driven from their home.  They settled on a clearing, with the log house in the center so that they might see the approach of the enemy from any direction.  Some of the people were living the United Order.   Solomon Hancock, being the steward, had the grain and produce stored in a granary at his home, to be divided out to the Saints according to their needs.  Government troops were stationed there to guard the provisions. 
    The Hancock home consisted of two log rooms.  The soldiers occupied one room and  Solomon’s family the other.  One evening as the soldiers were sleeping, the guards blew the whistle, signaling that enemies were approaching.  Instantly all was excitement as the soldiers were ready for any emergency.  Again the whistles blew, the soldiers looked out, saw the stacks on fire and ran to save them.  This is exactly what the mob wished them to do.
    They were jealous of the growth of the Mormon Settlements, and wished to kill the leaders. They particularly wanted to get Solomon that night because he was the president of the branch and a trusted servant of the Prophet Joseph Smith.  The mob let the soldiers go unmolested as they eagerly waited to get a shot at Solomon.  One of the mob shouted “There he is now!”  A shot was fired and a man went down.  It was not Solomon as they supposed, but Edwin Durthy whom they had killed. 
    They tried several times to shoot Solomon as he worked with the others to stop the fire, but the bullets seemed to lack the power to harm him.  Alta often related this story and told how thankful they were to God for protecting their father’s life that night.  Although they murdered a man, burned the stacks and tried to kill her husband, Phoebe, Solomon’s wife, invited them in and gave them food and drink, after their anger had some what cooled down thus heaping coals of fire upon their heads.
    The family experienced hardships and hunger and also the blessings of the Lord.  Due to the exposure and hardships, Solomon died near winter quarters December 2, 1847 at the age of 54 years and was buried in Pottawattamie Co., Iowa.  Alta’s mother and her children and other saints, were tired of being harassed and driven.  They obtained outfits to come west to the land which had been chosen for the Latter-day Saints.  They left winter quarters with the Allen Taylor Wagon Train in June 1849.
    They were three months in crossing the plains.  Alta was baptized in a river as they crossed the plains.  Alta’s mother drove her own ox-team most of the way.  Allen Taylor was captain of the 100 wagons in their company.  They arrived in Salt Lake City in September 1849.  Alta then a girl of nine had walked the entire distance.  She and her brother Isaac drove the cattle and their feet were sore and bleeding from the prickly pears.
    The Hancock family arrived in Payson in 1851.
    Alta met a Canadian, Jonathan Glisten Davis.  They were married on  January 28, 1858 and were later endowed in the Endowment house at Salt Lake City on November 24, 1865. 
They liived in Payson near the DRGW Depot in northwest Payson. Their home was always open and ready to receive their friends and strangers.  Alta fed many tramps who came to their home hungry.  Johnathan passed away on July 1, 1901 and was buried inthe Payson City Cemetery
    An earnest Church worker, Alta served as Primary Counselor of the Second Ward, Primary President in the Third District before the wards were divided, Sunday School Teacher, and member of the burial committee.
    One of her most happy labors was performing work for her beloved dead in the Temples of Salt Lake, Manti, and St. George.  She was the mother of eleven children, four dying in infancy.  Alta bore all her bereavements with a sweet loving trust that it was God’s will.  Through all of her trials she was an example of patience and fidelity.  Besides her own family, she mothered and cared for the little daughter of Jonathan by his first wife. 
    In her later years she lived with her children.  She was always welcomed with love when she came to visit for a few weeks or months as the case might be.  She was a pillar of strength and comfort in the home of Henry Chester Haskell during the illness and death of his wife, and her daughter Phoebe Ann Davis, March 21, 1920.
    She will be remembered and appreciated most of all for her charming personality free from envy, jealousy, and prejudice as well as her abundance of sympathy and love.  She was greatly loved and revered by her own family, the 33 grand children, 70 great grandchildren and 13 great great grandchildren.  She passed away on May 8, 1927 at the age of 87.   She was buried in the Payson City Cemetery next to her husband Jonathon G. Davis.

Friday, June 26, 2020



    Jane Ann Sheffield was born in Bethany, New York on February 16, 1834.  Her parents were Anson Sheffield and Maria Mott.   Jane Ann was the eighth of nine children.  Her parents became acquainted with the Prophet Joseph Smith and were baptized into the church at an early date by Robert Samuelson in Kirtland, Ohio.  The Mississippi and Ohio Rivers were the frontier in those days.   
    When the saints were coming west in 1850, Jane Ann was sent ahead to travel with the Ferimorz Little family and help take care of their children.  She milked cows and hung the pail under the back of the wagon, so it would be churned into butter for supper.  Jane Ann walked most of the way to the Salt Lake Valley, as there was no room for her to sleep in the wagon.  She enjoyed the evenings of singing and dancing while on the trail.  After the company arrived in Salt Lake, Jane stayed with the Little family until her parents arrived in the valley in 1852.  After their arrival they travel onto Payson with their family.
    The Sheffield family then moved to Payson to settle down.  It was here in the early fall of 1852 that Jane first met her future husband, Thomas English Daniels.  Jane would go to the fort every day to milk the family cow and Thomas was there for the same purpose.   Thomas was flirting, and went to her at once and offered to milk her cow.  Jane explained to him that her cow was not used to strangers, but Thomas insisted.  He sat down on the stool and proceeded to nearly fill the pail with milk, when the cow suddenly turned her head and got a good look at who was doing the milking.  The cow lifted her foot and with a kick, sent Thomas and the milk sprawling on the ground.  This introduction soon made Jane and Thomas the best of friends.
    That friendship developed into love and they were married on November 25, 1855, in Payson, Utah.  Thomas described the couple’s first few months like this, “Our bridal chamber was in a one room log house that my mother and brother occupied; mother on her high post bed in one corner, Joseph on the floor in another corner, and my bride and I made our bed on the floor next to the fireplace.”  Thomas soon built Jane a two-story adobe home where they raised thier ten children.
    Jane Ann made some of the best pastry and bread, cured all the meats, and carded, spun and wove on the loom all the clothing for the family.  Thomas and Jane were the parents of ten children.  Jane also taught Sunday School and filled other service positions for the church.  Jane’s eldest daughter, Louisa Jane, died at the age of twenty-two, leaving her mother and father a newborn baby to raise along with their large family.
    Thomas and Jane celebrated their fiftieth wedding anniversary on November 25, 1905 surrounded with family and friends, in the same adobe house that Thomas built them when married.  A year later, Jane caught pneumonia and passed away suddenly on October 18, 1906.  Thomas followed her quickly to the other side, passing away on November 6, 1906.  The Daniels couple are buried in the family plot in the Payson Cemetery.