Sunday, April 29, 2012

Ancestors in Heaven Vol. 3 - William ATKINSON and Phebe CAMPBELL

ATKINSON Phebe and William 2
Phebe Campbell Atkinson and William Atkinson

                                  Great-grandparents of Edmund Newlove Atkinson
      (Transcribed from two different typed copies,with the few differences shown in [brackets].)

My paternal great-grandfather, William Atkinson, was born on the 20th of September, 1812 at St. John, New Brunswick, Canada.  He was the son of Christopher Atkinson and Nancy [Ann] Smith. His grandfather, Robert Atkinson, came from Yorkshire, England to Canada 1774.

St Johns New Brunswick
Map showing St. John, New Brunswick
      He settled [first] at River Herbert, Cumberland County, Nova Scotia. 

Sackville MtAllison sprintime
Mt. Allison Univ in the springtime (Sackville, New Brunswick)
He did not remain there for any length of time, but purchased a farm in Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada. 

His family moved there with him.  His farm is now the site of the Mt. Allison Educational Institute.

    William was married in December, 1833 to Phebe Campbell. 

She was also born at Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada on the 7th of October, 1809. 

She was the daughter of Isaac Campbell and Ann Wry.  She had a brother named John. 

To William and Phebe were born fifteen children, which included one pair of twin girls and a pair of twin boys.  These four and one other child died in infancy in Canada. 

Phebe’s father was a sea captain and was drowned at sea.
Baptism in a pond color
Baptism in frozen pond
    William and Phebe heard the Gospel and early in the spring of 1851 they were baptized by Elder Henry Skerry.  They had to cut through 2 feet of ice in order to be baptized.

On the 22nd of April, 1853, William and Phebe with five daughters and three sons left Sackville to gather with the Saints in Utah. 

Elder Marriner Merrill and Sarah Ann Atkinson Merrill
They were also accompanied by Marriner Merrill, a recent convert.

After arriving in Utah, Brother Merrill married their oldest daughter, Sarah Ann Atkinson.

    Their journey was by way of St. John, New Brunswick, Canada, East Port, Maine, Boston, Massachusetts, Troy, New York, Buffalo, New York, Detroit, Michigan, Chicago, Illinois, La Salle, Illinois, St. Louis, Missouri, and from there up the Mississippi River to Keokuk, Iowa. 
Keokuk Iowa engraving
Keokuk, Iowa

wagon train Not Alone Teichert
Not Alone by Minerva Teichert
Keokuk was a town twelve miles below Nauvoo, Illinois.  From there they were to go West by team.

   They arrived Keokuk on the 9th of May, 1853.  At this point, they found others going to the Salt Lake Valley across the then Territory of Iowa and the great plains of the west.  It was here that teams bought, usually two yokes or pairs of oxen to a wagon. 

In some instances, the cows were yoked up and placed in teams to assist in pulling the wagons.  William was elected Captain of this division.  They were in the Crosby Company. 

On the 18th of May, 1853, they rode out of Keokuk. 

Mormons_bury wagon train
Burying their dead
On the 19th of May, William and Phebe’s youngest daughter, Profinda, just two and a half years old died. 

This delayed the Company one day.

    Because of the newness of the country, the lack of bridges and the rain they encountered, the 330 mile journey across the Territory of Iowa was extremely difficult. 
ferry long flat boat
Flat-boat ferry across the river
However, on the 17th of June they arrived at Council Bluffs with their company.  Here they camped near the Missouri River. They made arrangements to be ferried across the Missouri River on a large flat boat.  After a few days, they succeeded in getting across the river safely with all their outfits.

    On the 1st of July, 1853, they left the Missouri River and wended their way slowly to the Rocky Mountains.  Nothing serious occurred that impeded their progress. 

Indians allow wagon train to pass
However, some little incidents occurred occasionally to cause a fad feeling in camp.  On one occasion they were stopped by a large band of some five hundred Sioux Indians. 

They placed themselves across the road and stopped the teams. 
The Indians demanded coffee, sugar flour, tobacco, etc. 

The company complied cheerfully to their wishes because it was their only safety. 

After receiving their demands, the Indians reluctantly let them pass and continue on their journey.
Buffalo herd 1
Buffalo herd
    The company also had one small stampede with their teams as they were being hitched to the wagons, but without serious damage.  They encountered many herds of wild buffalo which at times came near stampeding their teams.  By using caution and stopping their teams, what seemed to be pending calamity was averted. These herds of wild buffalo were often seen on the Laramie Plains and west of them by the thousands.  There were ten or fifteen thousand in a herd.  The herd would sometimes cover many acres of ground.  Buffalo are a species of wild cattle, larger than our common cattle and very ferocious looking.  They are covered with long coarse hair, dark brown to black in color.
wagontrain emerges echo canyon to slc2
Entering Salt Lake Valley
    The train of wagons arrived in Salt Lake City on the 11th of September, 1853 [and it was a pleasing spectacle to behold civilization again]. The people were pleased at the sight of civilization. 
Oregon-Trail wagon train
Arriving to a crude state of civilization
The houses where the people lived with comforts around them seemed very nice, even though they were still in a crude state. 
It must be remembered that the first pioneers had only been in the country a little over six years. 

Peace, good will and brotherly kindness seemed to prevail in all the land.

    There were no grog shops, no drunkenness and no profanity anywhere in all the city of Salt Lake.  The people could lie down in peace and rise up in safety with doors and windows open.  No fears were entertained of burglars or any one to disturb the quiet of any in all the City of the Saints.

    But in opening up a new country there were many things to contend with in a financial way.  The country was new and the climate was arid.  Those first years were very dry.  There were grasshoppers and crickets by the millions to contend with.  All these things had a tendency to discourage the early settlers of this region.  Had it not been for the former experiences of the “Mormon” people with mobs killing and being expelled from society no doubt many would have been discouraged and left the country.  There were seasons along in the 1850’s when not a drop of rain fell on the parched earth from April until November.  Flour in those days was more precious than fine gold.  In 1855, twenty dollars was offered for one hundred pounds of flour and it is said that in 1848, flour was worth a dollar per pound.  There were no settlers west of the Mississippi River in those days and the country was very sparsely settled east of the river for hundreds of miles.
Pres Brigham Young
Come come ye saints
Saints settle and colonize
   (This account of leaving Canada, crossing the plains and up to this point was taken from the diary of Apostle Marriner Wood Merrill.)

    The Atkinson family camped in Salt Lake City for a short time where William Atkinson became acquainted with Brigham Young and received counsel from him.

William went to Bountiful, Davis County, Utah and rented a farm from a Mr. Perrie.

The Atkinsons were one of the first families to settle in Bountiful. 

After working for two years, he bought a farm which he owned until his death.

William Atkinson 1812 no eye patch
William Atkinson
    William Atkinson made one trip back after handcart companies.

At the time of the Johnson army scare, he moved his family south to Provo with the rest of the Saints and then returned when things were settled again. 

William went on a mission to his old home in New Brunswick, Canada. 

emma-smith_lindsley HR
Emma Smith

At one time, he met the [Prophet Joseph Smith’s] prophet’s mother and also his wife, Emma Smith.

 He visited with them and when he left he gave them some money. 

On the 3rd of May, 1856, their 15th and last child Rhoda was born.

Bountiful Tabernacle dup hist markers
Bountiful Tabernacle

    In Bountiful he was called to be First Counselor to Bishop John Stoker [Stocker]. 

About 1857, he was called to preside over the saints of South Bountiful before it was made a Ward. [He also assisted in erecting many public buildings.]

The Endowment House
All of his children were married either in the old Endowment House or in one of the Temples. 

    The Atkinsons were a religious people.  They were very loyal, not only to the Church, but to the government as well. 

They were all a very industrious people and have all been well off financially. 

They were also an independent people, believing not only in taking care of themselves but doing all they could for their fellow men.

    The Atkinsons were large of stature, especially the men. 

They seemed to believe in large families which all of them had.  There were several pairs of twins in the families.  They were also a long-lived people, several of them living into their nineties.

William Atkinson 1812
William Atkinson with eye patch
It was said that they were a congenial and a jolly family.

    William, at one time, had Erysipillas and lost an eye.

    William’s occupation was farming, cattle raising and horse raising.  [He helped Hatch, Moss and Pace homestead the Silver Creek ranch and later bought half interest in it.]

Having investigated the Silver Creek and Parleys Park area in Summit County, he with William Brown, Joseph Nobels, Edwin Pace and Eric Hogan formed the B1 T2 Ranch.

mowing machine
Mowing Machine
Daniel Wood and Joseph Moyle joined them later.  William bought the first mowing machine that came to Utah. He and Horace Eldredge also bought the first threshing machine in the area.

    William bought a Mr. Peck’s place because Mr. Peck had been called on a mission for the church. 
Atkinson Sarah Ann Tingey 2
Sarah Ann Tingey Atkinson
While he was gone William fed and clothed his family.

    In November, 1862, William married Sarah A. Tingey, a daughter of Henry Tingey and Ann Young, also pioneers of 1852. 

She was born on the first of March, 1847 at Bedfordshire, England.  To them were born eight children.

    William and Sarah would live on the Silver Creek farm and Phebe and her son Amos would live on the Bountiful Ranch for a while, then they would change around.

dream tree life BOM-03-01
Dream of gathering

 Just a short time before his death, William had a dream that Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball and others were in a gathering and having the names of those that were to go back and settle Jackson County Missouri written in a book. 

In the dream, Brother Kimball asked Brigham if he should write William Atkinson’s name down.

  President Young answered, “No, his name has been there a long time.”

A short time after this William was kicked by a horse. [and] He lived only three more days.  William Atkinson died the 25th of August, 1879, at his home in Bountiful.  He was 66 years, 11 months and 21 days old.

    In those days there were no cars or buggies, only old shaky wagons.  The young men would not consent to have him taken to the church in one of them so they carried him a distance of a half a mile.  Then they carried him from there to the cemetery, a distance of about three and half miles.  There were twelve young men taking shifts of six at a time.  It was such a hot, dry day that it kept two others carrying water for them.  He was the first and the last person to be carried that distance.  He was buried in the Bountiful Cemetery.

    William was a man of noble traits and of strong character.  He was a great favorite of the young people and was always welcome at their dances and parties.  He was a great fun-maker and delighted in telling and playing jokes.
ATKINSON Phoebe Campbell_4 dau
Phebe Cambell Atkinson and her four daughters
    Phebe Campbell Atkinson was a large, strong, healthy woman. 

 She was a very industrious wife and a splendid manager.  She made butter and cheese and sold them in Salt Lake City to help with expenses.

Phebe was a lover of all mankind.  She kept an open house for all her friends and relatives and did lots of entertaining. 

Phebe was a step dancer and danced up until a few days before her death.

    The following is quoted from a clipping from a newspaper at the time of her death:
ATKINSON Phoebe Campbell
Phebe Campbell Atkinson

    “Mrs. Phebe Campbell Atkinson was in her 95th year.  Her living descendants aggrate to a total of 460 souls. She is represented by 15 children, 77 grandchildren, 329 great-grandchildren and 39 great-great-grandchildren.  She was an exceedingly active woman and until a few weeks prior to her death was accustomed to taking a daily ride. Mrs. Atkinson was born at New Brunswick near the Bay of Funday, Canada on the 9th of October 1809.  Her marriage to Mr. William Atkinson occurred in 1834 when she was 25 years of age.  She came to Utah with him in 1853.  They settled in Bountiful when that village had hardly a single inhabitant.  Since then, she has been prominently identified with church work as well as socially.  She is well known as a faithful and an aggressive Latter-Day Saint.”

    It is worthy to note that at the time of her death [in 1904] there had not been one child or grandchild married outside of the temple.  She died at the old home at Bountiful where she had lived alone with her daughter Rhoda for years.  She was buried in the Bountiful Cemetery.
    Phebe Campbell Atkinson was an officer in the Relief Society of Bountiful from the time it was organized until the ward was divided in 1877.  She was appointed President of the South Bountiful Ward Relief Society on the 26th of January, 1879.  She held this position for fifteen years then resigned because of ill health.

    The following is a note taken from the book, EAST OF ANTELOPE ISLAND, published by the Daughters of Utah Pioneers, Davis County Company in 1948.  It is a history of Davis County, Utah:
    “In the winter of 1854, William and his son-in-law, Marrineer Merrill went into the mountains east of Bountiful and made some 17,000 shingles.  They were sold the following summer for $8.00 per 1,000.”
All living pioneers in 1897


Veda said...

Great re-write of the history! I love the pictures you added to it. Thanks for sharing!

bevanmission said...

Thanks, Veda! I didn't re-write Grandpa Atkinson's history. I only added the 'very few' additions/differences between his two versions. They're not dated so it's difficult to tell which one was written first. I'm still waiting for the other 'Histories' you've been sitting on so that I can incorporate them into posts, too. I'm glad you like the extra photos. They help me to visualize the times and see the events in my 'mind's eye'.

Daynia Lewis said...

These are my direct ancestors. Thank you for sharing!!!
Daynia Lewis

bevanmission said...

@Daynia: Hello Cousin! We descend through William Newlove Atkinson md Selina Knighton and then to Oscar Atkinson md Caroline Webb. Here's a link from our family pedigree:
It's wonderful to hear from new cousins! Please let us know how you tie in, too.
Love, Hollie Bevan

bevanmission said...

@Daynia: We're 4th Cousins!! You descend through Mary Jane Atkinson md Edwin C Pace and then to Sarah Jane Pace md Parley Pratt Willey!!

...and baby makes 4 said...

This was absolutely a wonderful find. I am related to Phebe and William Atkinson from their son William Newlove and Selina Knighton Atkinson, and then their daughter Sarah Jane Atkinson who married Stephen Cornelius Hatch and then from them my great grandpa William Ira Hatch etc... My grandpa hatch made a family history book but still had some holes. There was only one photo of Phebe Atkinson but no photo of her husband so it was just wonderful to find his picture and the history on the types of people they were. Wow, they are definitely on the list of ancestors to be proud of. Oh by the way, I'm still looking for extra information on Stephen Cornelius Hatch, if anyone has a photo or extra info on him I'd absolutely love to hear of it. my email is Thank you for posting this.

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