Annie Jane Smith
Contributor: dfarmer55 Created: 9 months ago Updated: 9 months ago
ANNIE JANE SMITH
Annie Jane Smith was born 10, Oct. 1848 at Humansdorp, Cape of Good Hope, South Africa. She was the daughter of Henry and Martha (Knight) Smith. They were the parents of eight children; George Henry, Annie Jane, William Robert, Martha, Harriet Eliza, Rosa, Minnie and Joseph, all born in Africa, except Joseph, who was born in Salt Lake City. They also adopted Martha’s sister Rachael’s son, John O’Driscoll Jr. and James Knight, another nephew, whose parents had died.
A Mormon Elder, Henry Dixon converted the Smith family to Mormonism in 1865. They and others including Arthur and Alonzo Noon were baptized and confirmed members of the church.
They left Port Elizabeth 18 April 1865 aboard the Brig Mexicana bound for America. (The Brig Mexicana sailed from Port Elizabeth with 47 saints aboard under the direction of Miner G. Atwood) The company arrived at Castle Garden New York June 18, 1865. Church Chronology by N. Jensen
In New York they boarded a train and went to St. Joseph Mo. From here they traveled by boat up the Missouri River to Wyoming Nebraska. They remained here for over a month while they bought oxen, wagons and provisions for the journey to Utah, led by Miner G. Atwood. There being two companies, theirs being known as the Smith Noon company.
Throughout this time a romance grew between Annie Jane and Alonzo Noon. They were married July 10, 1865, at Wyoming Nebraska. They occupied one of the wagons, their bridal couch; a canvas stretched over sacks of flour, the hardest bed Annie ever slept on.
On one occasion, Alonzo being quick tempered and combative, loaded his musket to encounter some Indians, who he thought were stealing their cattle. Without his knowing it, Annie had removed the cap from his musket, which probably averted a massacre.
From on old letter by Alonzo to Annie written 22 May 1892 from Denver, in reviewing this trek he says - “that Denver was only a frontier settlement of about one hundred people on the border of the Platte River, whose inhabitants were mostly rough western adventurers, trappers and fierce Indians. The surrounding country a hunting ground where savages and wolves and prairie dogs made the nights hideous with their howling and barking. Here on the road to Pikes Peak men and women were scalped by Indians, and not far from here Indians attacked and scalped a Danish train. Also remember the times, when you had to get into the wagon, so as not to be seen when we passed through a grove of trees, where Indians had been seen. Remember the night when we had to camp on a hill without water, tired and thirsty and guard the camp from the red Devils. All of this happened in our knowledge of this Western country, all in the past, but still dear to our lives.”
They arrived in Salt Lake City 9 Nov. 1865, where they built a log house between 7th and 8th east on ninth south. Here they resided for about four years. Their two oldest children a boy, Henry Adolphus and a girl Annie Jane were born.
The winter of 1865-66 was a very severe one in Utah and especially so to those immigrants, who came from a tropical climate and were unprepared for winter weather. This was their first experience with snow and freezing temperatures. Annie’s two sisters Minnie and Rosa became ill and were buried in the city cemetery in Salt Lake City, during those first few years.
Annie and Alonzo moved to Provo, and then Alonzo went to Beaver for a short time, as he had some business activities to perform. He left Annie in Provo with her two babies. The Indians were troublesome at that time and Annie became very frightened. She had an opportunity to sell her sewing machine, so she did this, and taking the money gained from this transaction she went to Beaver to be with Alonzo, much to his surprise. After a short time they returned to Provo.
Alonzo built and operated a sawmill at Third North and Fifth West, where they sawed logs into slabs for the construction of houses, which they sold and traded. The old penstock remained in the millrace for many years.
Later they moved to their permanent residence on the southwest corner of first north and third west, which they bought and remodeled. It was one of the outstanding homesteads in Provo in early days, with asphalt sidewalks and a fine orchard of trees. The outbuildings, fences, and trunks of the trees were whitewashed every spring. It was here that eight of their eleven children were born; they were Harriet, Arthur Alonzo, Rose Elvira, Francis C., Ethel Minerva, Florence Opal, Pearl and Clifford, who died while small children and another baby who died in infancy.
Alonzo, interested in mining, prospected the Tintic district, making trips to Tintic with horse and buggy, taking several days for the trip. He located several important mines including the Iron King. He shipped iron ore to smelters and mills all over Utah. The softer and more colorful ore was ground in a mill in Provo and mixed with linseed oil. This proved to be a very useful and successful iron ore paint. It was used for the preservation of roofs and out buildings.
Alonzo was judge of the Juvenile Court of Provo for over twenty years. Although they came to Utah as converts, they joined the Methodist Church because of some misunderstandings..
Alonzo was a personal friend of Karl G. Maeser, and Annie was well acquainted with his wives. She had much sympathy for them, after the Manifesto. Delia Maeser, his sister, taught piano lessons to Annie and Rosa.
At the time of the Smoot investigation, Annie was privileged to accompany Alonzo to Washington D.C., all expenses paid. There, Alonzo testified in Senator Reed Smoot’s behalf that he was not a polygamist. Senator Smoot retained his seat in the U.S. Senate. Annie enjoyed this trip very much.
Annie was an excellent housekeeper and was said to have “a place for everything and everything in its place.” She enjoyed cooking tasty meals, and was devoted to her husband and children.
Their oldest son Henry died Jan. 1, 1889 of pneumonia, while still a young man. This was a great shock to the family and grieved them tremendously, especially Annie. This and the loss of their other children, contributed to her poor health the last few years of her life. She died at the age of 58 on 8 Oct 1906 and was buried in the Provo Cemetery.
She had only 11 grandchildren and 20 great grandchildren.
This history was written by Edda Noon for the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers, compiled from excerpts in family records and letters.
Biography of Alonzo Arthur Noon
Contributor: dfarmer55 Created: 9 months ago Updated: 9 months ago
ALONZO ARTHUR NOON
Written by his son Arthur Alonzo Noon in 1932, additional explanations and comments added by Lois N. Huff.
Alonzo A. Noon was born in London England 28 June 1837. His father was
Charles Peter Whitaker; his mother was Susan Noon. His father Charles Peter Whitaker was a graduate from the University of Gottengen in Germany. Susan was his second wife after his first wife Elizabeth Kerry died. She had five children, Charles Napoleon, Clara, Alonzo, Adolphus and Susan. She lost her own life when Susan was born. (Charles Napoleon must have died as an infant)
Some years later Charles married Susanah Newland and by action of an English law, the children took their mother’s maiden name, Noon, expecting at some future date the distribution of the Noon estate. All of the children were christened Noon Whitaker and by legal advise retained only the name of Noon. In a letter to one of his children, Charles P. Whitaker spoke of Susan as being a terrestrial Angel and said he would never cease to mourn her loss. She was distinctly English. She was buried in the Deptford churchyard where her monument can be seen at the present day.
My father Alonzo and his brother Adolphus were put in the charge of an old English nurse named Elizabeth Ballard when they were very young. The two boys grew to love her very much and remained in her charge until they were old enough to attend school, which they did. This school was an old English boarding school of strict discipline. The two boys arising at the sound of a bell to wash and prepare for breakfast, with so many hours for study and so many hours for recreation, and at the sound of a bell to retire. Every garment was folded and placed on a chair by the bed. Under these strict regulations these boys remained until Alonzo was twelve.
At this time his father placed Alonzo aboard a sailing vessel commanded by Reginald Whitaker, a half brother. He remained at sea for several years, putting up with many hardships and trials, as cabin boy. I remember him speaking of the meager rations of a biscuit a day and perhaps a bowl of soup, the ship probably being delayed by storms at sea or unfavorable winds. He also spoke of his comrades and passengers dying. He would help to wrap them in canvas with weights on their feet, and with an informal ceremony cast them into the tempestuous sea, while the wind and the billows sang on. On one occasion he was thrown overboard. Being able to swim, he followed the ship until he was missed and finally picked up, exhausted from overexertion and cold. With these and other unfortunate conditions he sailed on.
After sailing around the world several times, while still young, he ran away from the ship at Australia only to meet up with other trials and privations. He pathetically told of his loneliness and troubles after he left the ship and said, “My experiences then and subsequently always made me a friend to a boy or child in trouble. Being left alone in this cold and cruel world perhaps helped to fit me for my duties as a judge of the juvenile court.” Which position my father held in later years. He worked diligently in this capacity for over twenty years. It was in Australia that he had his first experience in mining and the management of mines, which he adopted and made his life work, in which he was a success.
He finally tired of Australia and made a voyage to India as a sailor, where the Sepoy revolution had just broken out. He helped to suppress that uprising. After five years he moved to South Africa in hopes of finding his brother who was in the British army. Also his sister Clara was in South Africa. He located Adolphus at Grahamstown. The boys loved each other very much and from that time on for several years, worked together in business and otherwise until Adolphus left for California.
From Grahamastown they went to Natal and were made welcome by their sister Clara and her husband Richard King. King was running a sugar plantation and was glad to get some active assistance. They rented a tract of land from King and realized an excellent income. They got a capitalist by the name of Vanderbyl to loan them some money. With this they bought the mill and part of the plantation from King as he had other interests of importance. Taken from the Geographic Magazine of April 1931, is the following; ‘A beautiful statue represents Richard King, who rode 600 miles to Grahamstown in ten days to get relief for the British, when the Dutch were besieging Durban, it stands on the Victoria Embankment of Durban.’
They employed from 150 to 200 Kaffers and East Indians on the plantation, which depended somewhat on the season. Adolphus was general business manager and Alonzo was in charge of all labor transactions and field operations. It was called the Esipingo Sugar Estate. This sugar industry proved to be successful, paid off their indebtedness and was very profitable.
Through the influence of Henry Dixon, a Mormon missionary and others including the Smith family they were converted to Mormonism. The glowing opportunities in America had taken possession of their imaginations. They sold out their holdings and interests and with the means realized, were not wealthy but in very favorable and comfortable circumstances. They gathered their personal effects and from Port Elizabeth they set sail for America aboard the Brig Mexicana April 18, 1865. Landing in New York, they organized a company called the Noon and Smith Co. Equipping themselves with cattle, wagons and supplies of various kinds, they started on their way to Utah. Although they were considered among the late pioneers they put up with many hardships. Full of zeal, riding in covered wagons drawn by oxen, while Indians lurked around the sand moles and underbrush. Through it all my father enjoyed more or less a romance with a bright-eyed young lady of sixteen, with dark brown wavy hair. Her name was Annie Jane Smith. They became very much infatuated with each other. She would help him handle the cattle. They had more or less trouble with the Indians stealing their oxen and provisions. On one occasion, my father being quick tempered, encountered some Indians, who were stealing their cattle. Without his knowledge Miss Smith had taken the cap of his old musket, which no doubt saved them considerable trouble.
They were married in Wyoming Nebraska July 10, 1865 by one of the Mormon Elders. They lived in one of the covered wagons, cooking their food over a campfire. They stopped for a few days for a honeymoon before resuming their way. Their bed consisted of a canvas stretched over sacks of flour for a mattress, which my mother said was the hardest bed she ever slept on.
They arrived in Salt Lake City Nov. 9, 1865, where he fixed them a log house in the first ward between 9th south and Seventh East where they lived for about four years. It was here that their two oldest children were born - a boy and a girl.
In company with his brother Adolphus they moved to Provo. Alonzo rented a one-room log cabin on 3rd West and 1st North from a man named Sam Slaughter, father-in-law to his brother Adolphus.
They moved to Beaver for a short time as he had some business activities to perform. Mother was left in Provo with her two babies. The Indians were troublesome at that time and my mother became frightened. She had an opportunity to sell her sewing machine and with the collateral gained, she went to Beaver to be with my father, much to his surprise. After a short time they returned with their two babies back to Provo and again lived on the Sam Slaughter property where a girl was born to bless their home.
From there they moved to Fifth West where he put up a sawmill. He sawed logs and slabs for the construction of houses, which he sold and traded to meet his obligations. The penstock remained in the millrace for many years after.
Later he moved to a house on the South West corner of First North and Third West, which father bought and remodeled. Our parents spent many happy years there and six more children were born to them making a total of eleven. It was a two-story gable roofed adobe house. It was here that I was born. The fence was substantial but crude with cedar posts and three boards high. On the side walk stood four large locust trees. I remember my older brother telling me how our mother used to send him upstairs to take a nap and how he would climb out of the window into one of the trees to go play with the boys in the neighborhood. He would then climb back and go down stairs very much refreshed from his afternoon nap. This home became one of the outstanding homes in Provo, with asphalt sidewalks, and orchard of trees. The outbuildings and the trunks of the trees were whitewashed every spring, also the fence. This was one of my responsibilities. Father was very neat in caring for his property.
The two young men did considerable prospecting of the Tintic district. They made the trip with horse and buggy, stopping at the home of Jonathan Page in Payson and at the Steel Boarding House in Goshen. One of the properties they located is now known as the Iron King mining property. He located several important mines. He took a very active part in the mining business; sold and shipped considerable iron ore to the smelters and mills for fluxing in different parts of the state. The softer and more colorful variety of iron ore was ground up in a mill in Provo. When mixed with linseed oil, it proved to be a very useful and successful Iron Ore Paint, especially used for the preservation of roofs and outbuildings.
In the early nineties Alonzo was elected Justice of the Peace. This office he held for over twenty years. Although he was a staunch and active worker of the Republican Party, he still retained this office during the Democratic administrations. In connection with the office of justice of the Peace, he held the office of Judge of the Juvenile Court, County Mining Recorder, and business manager of the West Tintic Iron Ore Mining Co.
Coming to Utah as a convert to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, he was disappointed with that he found here. Because of some broken promises made by some church leaders and his aversion to polygamy, he and his family joined the Methodist church. He was also a Mason. Quoting from the obituary from the Deseret News . . .. “Judge Noon was the last surviving charter member of the Story Lodge #4 A.F. & A.M. and was the first grandmaster of the lodge. This obituary also states that in the early years of his residency in Utah he engaged in school teaching.
He was a personal friend of Karl G. Maeser, whose sister Delia Maeser taught piano lessons to Annie and Rosa. At the time of the Smoot Investigation, he and Annie went to Washington D.C., all expenses paid, to testify in Senator Reed Smoot’s behalf, that he was not a polygamist. Reed Smoot retained his seat in the U.S. Senate.
He passed away Feb. 28, 1911 at 74 years of age. Internment was in the Provo cemetery. He was loved and respected by his friends and associates. He was a resident of Utah for over forty-six years.
The following excerpts from letters written by Alonzo Arthur give added insight to this fine man:
Letter of Nov. 1906 to bother Adolphus soon after his wife had passed away…
“But Dear old Brother, that does not fill the vacancy in my heart or home or to my children, but hope and faith brings us up a little, and we have to turn to life’s duties and bury in our hearts the past sweet memories of a gentle kind and pure woman, with who I lived for over 41 years and the results of that marriage, the remaining seven children, who are good and kind, who have not at any time, so far, brought sorrow to their Mother or I. And for those sweet memories of the past, and though sometimes the floodgates of my heart will overflow with tears, I know I cannot bring her back, or impress upon her cheek a loving kiss as I have done every morning for so many years. I must be contented until we meet again, with the memories of the past and pass all my love now to the children left by her to me.”
Another written May 26, 1908
“My past experience in the rough tumble of life, I suppose, fitted me for my present position…(juvenile court judge). I can enter into the feelings of the unfortunate, as well as the careless. I seem to know when a child is lying or letting the truth sour. The people say they like my way of speaking with them, and with the parents-I have to deal with them both occasionally. Many matters I have seen in life, when I was a roving boy, have been valuable to me as Judge of the Juveniles. Yet it seems strange that as Father would call me a Dunce, which to some extent I was, now in older age I should be counseling and instructing thousands of children the better way of life. I came to visit all the district schools, and instruct the children on the principles of the correct life, both at home or away from home and for every day life, the teachers are pleased at my way of imparting instruction to them. I talk Straight. Could you believe, such a thing as an apostate Mormon, counseling thousands of Mormon children, in the way of life, would occur about 32 years since you left Utah? Of course, I do not preach religion, only severely correct those who use profanity. And cause none to do so, and advocate to them following principles of life that make good citizens, patience, virtue, manly and womanly conduct, kindness and love, avoid profane language, strong and improper words at home or abroad, showing them the difference between ignorance and intelligence. And as you say old man, indeed life is stranger than fiction.”
Another letter, Aug 1908
“Don’t it seem funny for me to speak of you as grandfather, but when I come to see, and think, a good many years have passed since we got that licking from the old schoolmaster at Bermansy, for going to see a nurse, who had been a mother to us when babies. Or when I landed a poor and penniless boy, in Australia, without education or home, when all the church bells seemed to be ringing for everyone but me. Yes, that was a Sunday, and well do I remember it. I took shelter in an archway from the rain, it was raining, and my first companion for the day was a Street-Arab, but he showed me where to go for a lodging. The next morning I found work. That boy, to me, became lost; but he did me a good turn, since then I have always been employed one way or another, and since then, I feel for poor boys that are cast adrift, as I was in a strange country, among strangers. But let me say that I found among them good people, whose hearts are tender and helped the little cast away. When I think of my feelings, I revolt against him who was called father, but still I forgive him as I know he was wrongly led by and unfeeling woman, yet in himself I know his heart was good, and my bitter feelings go out toward him and he is quietly accepted with all his faults. I hope he has forgiven me as I have forgiven him, though he committed a cowardly act to all us four children, but we have weathered the gale, because we had it in us, which we partially got from him, some good blood. Well my boy there is nothing more to say at this time.”
Your affectionate brother, A. A. Noon
June 1910 in part . . .“I greet you the ‘Mayor of Nogales'. . . Yes, it does seem strange our present conditions in life. The changes and experiences that all four of us have passed through differ only in environment. To you and I ‘Mormonism” was in it’s time good. You, by following it, were lead to be more thoughtful and kind, me more moral and truthful. You know as a boy, I was a little wild, I like you, had no guide, only that dear old lady’s memory, Mrs. Ballard, whose Sunday readings from her Bible, followed me along in my boy days, and had much to do in influencing me in keeping me out of wrong, and somehow or another, I always have thought that our mother, as far as she could, was with us and guarded us to some extent. That may be all imagination but always in my thoughtful moments, it seemed so to me. Thus we have not always been without a guiding spirit, when we listened to its prompting.”
Sept.15, 1910 “The years are rolling on fast, it will not be long many years at least before the roll call is made for us. The three score and ten years passed for both of us and we must be nearing the other shore, but I do not desire to get there any sooner than I can help. But, when I look back and see the great changes in everything, I see the handwriting on the wall very plainly. It would be nice to see my old brother once more before the call is made. Certainly, Susan has proven herself a woman of character in every way. None of us have been weaklings; we were evidently made of good material. Our father in many things foolish, and certainly to his four children by our mother, neglectful: he was a good man no doubt, a brave and scholarly man, but very unwise in money matters, but a natural gentleman, who had squandered more money that he should have done, And with his last wife been very unwise, but she was an unusually bright woman, and was always kind and loving to him. There are thousands in this world like him. A woman’s influence is great, for good or evil, if properly directed for good, but if improperly directed, can work much harm especially if there are other children in the same family. There are few women, who can love another woman’s children.”
(On the back of this letter Adolphus wrote . . . “ This letter was written by my brother just 5 months before he passed away – he felt a premonition. Alonzo died in harness as ‘Justice of the Peace’ and ‘Judge of the juvenile Court’.” Pretty good for the Sailor Boy of 15, and mining prospector, in those days of old.”)
Copy of letter written by Alonzo to his wife Annie, Denver Colo. May 22, 1893
I have made appointment to meet the new parties tomorrow and so as to improve my time and get all the information I can, while I am here I started in to see the city, that is to see the ends of it, north, west, east and south, so as to tell you and myself.
I start in by saying that the city proper is about twelve miles square, as far as from Provo to the other side of Battle Creek, in the length and the same in width, like Pueblo, the buildings are of stone and bricks, substantially built. Of course some of the original Western Buildings yet remain, the same as in Salt Lake City, but they are being replaced by large ones. The business and rush in the main part of the city is the same as in all large cities, electric cars and cables.
Cars run all through the main thoroughfares, so that you have to look sharp in crossing the streets, that you are not run over. You have no time to imagine who was the last of the Mohicans, while crossing the streets or getting into the streetcars. You have to get on the move. The wagons and carts have a pretty good move on them also.
The streets are beautifully paved, and all is hurry and rush, from one end of the city to the other from 6:00 A.M. to 11:00 P.M. but as I have not been up later than that, I cannot say further. Outside the business portion of the city, there are thousands of beautiful homes and also some very pretty cottages. In the suburban part, the Courthouse is a palace of itself, and the State House will be a grand place, when finished.
There is wealth, poverty and dissipation all mixed up in this city, the same as in all cities, but the majority are the go ahead youth type, let her go galiger sort of folks, full of intelligence and go-aheadness. It goes alright if it breaks alright, that is what made this city –taking chances, and making the best of them. The climate is like Utah, healthy.
I feel almost like “Rip Van Winkle” minus his dog, --when I think about crossing this country when Denver was only known as a frontier settlement of about one hundred people, on the border of the Platte River, whose inhabitants were mostly the rough western adventurer, trappers and fierce Indians. The surrounding country was the hunting ground where wolves and prairie dogs held high carnival and made the nights hideous with their howling and barking. Where on the road to Pikes Peak white men and women were murdered and scalped by the red devils that reigned supreme. It all happened in our knowledge of this Western country. Not far from here it was, that the Indians attacked the Danish Train, and where if you remember, you had to get in the wagon and not be seen when we passed through that grove of trees, where those devils had just been. That night we had to camp on a hill without water, tired and thirsty, and guard camp from the Demons. That was one of the nights that J. Glenfield showed his cowardice in refusing to go outside of the camp to guard. All this being in the past, and almost forgotten, but still dear in our lives. And in so brief a number of years. All that –and wilderness on this part of the Platte River, and now in its place advancement in all it’s phases. Thus we look back, and talk to the present young people, who are to a great extent ignorant of it all. And by railroad rush in this city, one wakes up, as it were, from a long sleep, and as I said before feels almost like “Rip Van Winkle.”
But with all the advancement, it is not all gold that glitters or diamonds that sparkle. There are also other views to take. Though there is much wealth and business here, there is also great competition. Rent of business houses is very high, and judging from the usual amount of people I see buying in the stores, unless I miss my guess, much, very much of it is difficult for them to pay their debts and keep afloat as in Utah, and perhaps in some instances more so.
I find also an unusual amount of laborers and mechanics out of work. That shows me at once, that the supply in Denver is far greater than the demand. And we in Utah are usually as well off as they are in Denver, considering the population. There is one thing Denver and Colorado endeavor to do, and that is to support all their industries, as far as they possibly can.
Well dear, I will now close this letter, hoping dear, you are improving in health, and that you are all well, and Hattie and the baby. I hope Dottie got over that scald she had alright, without serious inconvenience. She is a dear good girl. They are all good children, not withstanding they make us a little cross at times, in their young and inexperienced ways--we were young once and no doubt unwise and gave someone some trouble. But still if they do the best they can, and I know we do the best we can, how can we do any better. We are not always the controllers of our own dispositions and conditions of life. Naturally we are the creatures of circumstance, and we cannot always help ourselves.
Your Affectionate Husband