Elizabeth White


Thursday, Feb 22, 1838
London, England


Monday, May 22, 1854


Monday, May 7, 1917
Salt Lake City, Utah
Burial: Draper, Utah

perhaps second generation member?   Baptism: 22 May 1854   AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF ELIZABETH WHITE STEWART Written by herself at the age of seventy-six years I was born February 22nd, 1838, in Bloomsbury Square, London, England. I am the daughter of William and Mary Ann White. My father died when I was about five years old. I was taught to pray when very young, also to be honest, truthful, and kind. In 1854 we heard of the Gospel of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I was then sixteen years old. My brother, Barnard, and myself were baptized on the 22nd day of May 1854 and my mother, sister Eliza and brother a short time before. We were very anxious to emigrate where we could enjoy our religion more freely. As soon as our circumstances would permit, my dear mother made all arrangements for our journey. We left London on the 22nd day of May 1856, arriving in Liverpool that night; and on the 24th day of May sailed on the good ship Horizon, bound for Boston Harbor, under the Presidency of Edward Martin and Jessie Haven. We had a pleasant voyage with the exception of one storm. We had three deaths and three weddings. We had 856 passengers on board, all of the Mormon faith. We had our meetings on Sundays and sometimes through the week, also singing and dancing. Each passenger was allowed so much provisions. It consisted of hard sailor’s biscuits, made of very coarse flour, so hard we could scarcely break them; salt pork and beef, rice, and split peas. We had a large cookhouse on deck and cooks. We had so much water allowed each person, but it was very poor. When the sea was calm we could occupy our time in reading, sewing and taking our walk on deck, also listening to the sailors singing while they were pumping the water out from the bottom of the ship. They never worked without singing, so they could all pull together. Then it was grand to see the sun go down. We were all thankful when the captain told us we could see land. We arrived in Boston Harbor June 28th, being just five weeks on the sea. Some of the passengers had to stay to earn means to go the rest of the journey. We then had to travel by train 1500 miles from Boston to Iowa City, which was a very unpleasant journey. We were put in cars that had no seats. We had to sit on our trunks and baggage and had no room to lie down at night. When we completed our journey to Iowa City, we were informed that we would have to walk four miles to our camping ground. All felt delighted to have the privilege of a pleasant walk. We all started, about 500 of us, with our bedding. We had not gone far before it began to thunder and lightning and the rain poured. The roads became very muddy and slippery. The day was far advanced and it was late in the evening before we arrived at the camp. We all got very wet. The boys soon got our tent up so we were fixed for the night, although very wet. We camped there until September. The handcart company had started ahead of us. We started on our journey across the Plains on the third of September with two yoke of oxen, two cows, a tent, a covered wagon, our trunks and bedding and provisions, and seven of us in the family, so we had to walk except when we went through the water. I think we would travel from fifteen to twenty-five miles per day, when the weather was fair. We had about forty wagons in our company, led by Captain John Hunt. We got along real well, had no trouble with Indians, but when we were near Fort Laramie a herd of buffalos came along as we were traveling and caused our cattle to stampede, resulting in the death of Mrs. Walters. She was driving the team in front of ours. She was knocked down and tramped upon by the oxen. She never spoke, but died in a few minutes, leaving a young baby. This sad affair cast a gloom over our camp. She was sewed in a blanket and buried on the wayside. Another sad event, one night a father and little son went out for wood to make a fire. They never returned. One leg was found in the father’s boot. Wolves had eaten them. The weather was fair and we got along real well until we were near the Platte River. It was getting very cold by this time. We finally reached the last crossing of the Platte River. We were then about 500 miles from Salt Lake. Our company camped on the east side and the handcart company passed over that night. All our able-bodied men turned out to help them carry women and children over the river. Some of our men went through the river seventy-five times. The snow fell six inches during that night; there were thirteen deaths during the night. They were so worn out. It was a terrible night for them. This was on the twentieth of October. The snow continued falling for three days. From this time we had no food for our cattle; when it stopped snowing and we could see to travel, our cattle were so weak they would drop in the yoke. Then they would kill them for us to eat. Our provisions were getting very low and we were then living on a fourth pound of flour per day and we used nothing but the poor meat for our noon meal. [We] were in this condition until we reached Devil’s Gate. We could then go no further. Our two yoke of oxen and one cow had died and the rest of the company [was in] about the same [condition]. We had nothing to burn only the wet sagebrush from under the snow, and melt the snow off the sage for our water to make our tea and make our bread with soda and sage water, what little we had. The snow was then from three to ten inches deep. The ground was frozen so hard they could not drive the tent pins, so they had to raise the tent poles and stretch out the flaps and bank them down with snow. We were nearly out of provisions. Our dear mother said she had never seen her dear family want for bread, but said the Lord would provide. About midnight that night all the camp had retired and we were awakened with a noise, and thought it was the yelling of Indians. We got up expecting they were upon us, but to our great surprise the noise was caused by the teamsters of the relief team and some of the camp shouted for joy. They were loaded with all kinds of provisions: flour, bread, butter, meat of all kinds, but all frozen so hard. Everything was so good. The bread was like cake, so sweet and nice. I remember we had to cut everything with the hatchet, but oh how thankful we all were that the Lord had answered our prayers and saved us all from starvation. Through the timely action of President Brigham Young in organizing this company, we were saved. The loaded wagon that came to our camp was from Draper. George Clawson and Gurnsey Brown were the teamsters. The next evening we had made our campfires. The boys had cleared the snow away and several of us young folks were sitting around the fire singing when our captain, John Hunt, and those two teamsters stood there until we got through, then the Captain came to me. He said that Mr. Brown was going to take a load of sick and old folks and if I would go with them, as his wife needed help, he would give me a horse, but I told him I would rather he would take my mother, as I could not leave her, but she begged me to go and said they would soon follow. I bade my dear mother good-bye, thinking she and the folks would soon follow, but they did not for two long weeks. I was lonesome when I left camp and we overtook the camp ahead of us. We stayed there and got Sister Esther Brown, one of the girls that crossed the sea with me. I felt so pleased to have her with us. We had a load of sick and infirm folks under the cover. We had to sit in the front with the men folks. We had to walk considerable. When we got to the foot of the big mountain, the snow was so deep I had to put men’s boots on. The teamsters were tall and so was Esther, and she could step in their tracks, but I could not in hers and had to make my own road up both mountains, frequently falling down. The snow was so deep and drifted but they told us when we got to the top we would see Salt Lake City. We were so thankful and delighted that it seemed to renew our strength and energy. It was the hardest part of my journey, but the thought of being nearly at our journey’s end after six months traveling and camping was cheering. If only my dear mother had been so near, I would have felt so much better. When we got to the top of the big mountains, the men folks took off their hats and we waved our handkerchiefs. They then pointed out Salt Lake City and I could not believe it was, for it looked to me like a patch of sagebrush covered with snow. I could not believe it until we got nearly to it. We arrived in Salt Lake City just at sundown on the thirtieth day of November 1856. The last handcart company came in on the afternoon of that day. Bishop Hunter came to the wagon. “Well,” he says, “Brother Brown, I thought you were to bring the sick and the old folks.” He said, “I have.” “Well, it does not look like it when we look at those girls,” he smiled, and found the rest under the cover. They took us to Ephraim Hank’s home to stay all night. Next morning they took us to Draper in a sleigh, and the snow being about two feet deep on the level. It was my first sleigh ride, and the longest I ever had. We arrived there all right and were welcomed by Sister Harriet Brown. I never can forget her kindness to me, a stranger in a strange land. My happiness would have been complete if I only had my dear mother, brothers, and sister with me. It was two long weeks before they arrived, then my happiness was completed. We did not know how to be thankful enough to our Heavenly Father for his preserving care over us during our journey, for the health and strength we enjoyed, and for every blessing he bestowed upon us. We kept behind the last handcart company so that our able-bodied men could assist them. My brother Barnard, with others, would go into their camp and see how they were suffering. He said it was terrible. Our company assisted them all they could, but there does not seem to be any account of our assistance in their history. After my folks came in, Bishop I. M. Stewart gave my brother, Barnard, employment. My mother made her home with me at Sister Brown’s, until she went to Sister Burnhamïs. My brother, Richard, about fourteen years of age, went to Salt Lake City, and William Godbe, the druggist, took him as errand boy and he was there for years, from errand boy, to clerk in the store. My sister, Eliza, stayed at Cottonwood with her husband’s sister, so we were all blessed with good homes for the winter and all enjoyed good health, which is one of the greatest blessings we can enjoy. Barnard was soon able to get a home, so our dear mother could live with him. I remained with Sister Brown two months, and then went to live at Bishop Stewart’s home. I lived with them about five weeks, and was married to Isaac M. Stewart on the eighth of March 1857. In July we received an invitation from the Presidency of the Church to celebrate the twenty-fourth of July up Big Cottonwood. It was while celebrating that the news came that Johnston’s Army was coming to wipe us out, but they did not. They Lord was on our side and they did not have power to destroy us. They came and everything was prepared for them. It was in the year 1864 that John R. Park came to Draper and to our home. I was then living in a small house with four little children. My husband, Isaac M. Stewart, being greatly interested in education, learned he was a schoolteacher, and got him employed to teach. He also baptized him a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Note: Elizabeth White Stewart died May 7, 1917, in Salt Lake City, and was buried at Draper, Salt Lake County, but the side of Isaac M. Stewart May 10, 1917.     Name: Elizabeth White Relationship to Primary Person: Spouse Marriage Date: 8 Mar 1857 Alternate Marriage Dates: 1856 Marriage Place: Draper, Salt Lake, Utah, USA   From    


Copyright © 2009-2020, Dave Lyon. All Rights Reserved